Peel Memorial Phase II Announced

Peel Memorial Concept

The Province has announced it will build the second phase of Peel Memorial, effectively making the facility a full hospital, as well as committing to open an additional 37 beds at Brampton Civic Hospital in the next few weeks.

Dr. Eric Hoskins, the Minister of Health and Long Term Care for the Province of Ontario, stood before a group of invited guests, including Brampton Mayor Linda Jeffrey and former Ontario premier Bill Davis, to say that the Province would add 31 beds to the previously announced 6 beds at Brampton Civic Hospital, and that they would be in operation before the start of the holiday season.

“Together, these 37 additional beds are going to help reduce wait times in the hospital, helping patients get faster access to care, and these 37 additional beds will all be opened in a matter weeks and before the holiday season.” Hoskins said.

Following some applause, Hoskins then made the statement that many of the people assembled were hoping to hear.

“I also know that the leadership here at William Osler Health System is already hard at work on plans for the next step in redeveloping the Peel Memorial Site. And to further recognize the growing healthcare needs in the region, I am also here today to confirm that our government is funding Phase II of the redevelopment of the Peel Memorial site.”

Watch the announcement here:

Peel Memorial Phase 2 Announcement

PEEL MEMORIAL Phase 2 is announced! Watch as Dr. Eric Hoskins, the Ontario Minister of Health and Long Term Care, announces that the Province will build the second phase of Peel Memorial, in addition to opening 37 new beds at Brampton Civic Hospital.

Posted by Paul Vicente – Stand UP for Brampton on Thursday, November 9, 2017

The announcement comes on the heels of a briefing note that was uncovered by the Provincial NDP which revealed 4,352 patients were cared for in the hallways at Brampton Civic Hospital between April 2016 and April 2017.

Surge pressures at the Brampton facility have pushed occupancy rates to 114 per cent above capacity. “Code Gridlock”, an emergency status, was declared eight times for a total of 65 days between January to April 2017. During these times, patients would stay in the emergency department up to four days waiting for a bed.

The emergency department at Brampton Civic was originally built to serve 80,000 visitors annually, but now sees 138,000 every year. This high demand has caused over-crowding and resulted in the opening of unfunded beds, with patients being placed in hallways.

The news, spreading on social media and other traditional media outlets, galvanized the community with people demanding change from Queen’s Park. With 37 new beds being funded and allocated at Brampton Civic, wait times are now expected to improve.

Mayor Linda JeffreyBrampton Mayor Linda Jeffrey was pleased with the announcement being made so quickly after she published an open letter to urge the Province to make Brampton’s healthcare needs a priority. “I am extremely happy with the speed at which the Province acted, and the fact that we had the Minister here himself talking about the understanding he has for the high growth that we are experiencing.”

The construction and opening of a “full” Peel Memorial Hospital will be a long awaited next-step in the building of healthcare delivery for Brampton, a city which is one of the fastest growing cities in Canada.

Phase II of Peel Memorial is expected to add more inpatient services, including for patients with complex continuing care needs, and rehabilitation services for patients and families. “It will have well over a hundred new beds, and an investment from the government of hundreds of millions of dollars,” noted Hoskins, adding that the facility will be a tower located on the northeast corner of the property.

No dates or timelines were presented in today’s announcement.

Peel Memorial Hospital was closed down in 2007. At the time, the facility offered 360 acute care beds. The hospital employed over 1,800 professional and support personnel. There were 320 physicians as well as approximately 600 volunteers that contributed their services and fund raising efforts.

Over its long and storied past, it has undergone several renovations and expansions since its founding in 1925.

In 2012, the facility was demolished to make way for the new Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness at a cost of $530 million. The new facility opened in 2017 providing an Urgent Care Centre for dealing with non-life-threatening conditions which alleviates pressure on Brampton Civic Hospital. Peel Memorial also offers day surgery services, as well as mental health, diabetes care, senior rehabilitation and dialysis services to the residents of Brampton.

Please enjoy this historical perspective of the evolution of Peel Memorial.

Peel Memorial is Back

AMAZING NEWS! Peel Memorial is back. It has been a long road, and it's a story worth telling. Please share with your friends and neighbours.

Posted by Paul Vicente – Stand UP for Brampton on Saturday, November 12, 2016

 

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Uber taking a bite out of taxicab industry in Brampton

Taxicab industry in BRampton.

At today’s City of Brampton Council meeting, representatives from the city’s taxicab industry appealed to Councillors to not increase their annual taxi operation licensing fees.

A motion to levy an increase from the current fee of $410 to $450 as recommended by staff was being considered. Every year, the licence fee is increased in lockstep with inflation (CPI).

Zafer Tarek Uber TaxiDelegating to Council, Zafar Tariq, a taxicab operator and member of the city’s Taxicab Advisory Committee, pointed out that while license fees have increased every year, the meter rate, which governs what drivers charge, has remained frozen during the past five years. Ridesharing services set their own fees based on demand, and other providers like limousines can easily adjust rates to cover their costs.

Speaking to the Councillors seated in the chambers, Tariq referenced their own salary increases that were self-approved at the beginning of the term of office. “How many members sitting here have received raises in the past five years, but we have not received anything.”

The taxi industry is struggling to remain competitive, and wants fees to be kept in check. “It is not in the benefit of the public and the taxicab industry to raise the meter [fees] every year.” added Tariq.

City staff insist that the fee increases are needed to recover the costs of administration for the taxicab industry and that the program is revenue neutral. Revenues derived from the fees pay for staff time, legal fees and associated costs.

Martin Medeiros on Uber and Taxicab Taxi

Councillor Martin Medeiros expressed concern that ridesharing programs like Uber have been putting pressure on the traditional taxicab industry. “When we talk about the cost to the taxpayer, if there is no processing and we are paying the staff the same, nothing changes.” He said, questioning the need for a fee increase. “I think the taxicab industry needs our support right now.”

In 2016, the City of Brampton called on Uber to suspend their operations, but the wildly popular ridesharing company continues to run in the city exposing operators to potential fines ranging from $500 to $5000.

Despite over an hour of debate, a consensus could not be found, and no decision was made. Councillors voted to refer the matter back to the Taxi Advisory Committee for further debate with a report and decision expected in the future.

 

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Break-In Caught on Camera

A still frame from security camera footage.
A still frame from security camera footage.

A video showing a break-in via a front door entrance was uploaded to YouTube today by veteran journalist Pam Douglas, a writer for The Brampton Guardian.

The six-minute security camera video shows how a man knocked at the door of a home while the owners were away. He knocks several times at the door and when no one answers, he breaks through the door and proceeds to enter the home, taking items with him after spending a brief period inside the house.

Police authorities advise that if someone is knocking at your door when you are not expecting visitors, you should not ignore it; Instead, you should answer it, even if only by having a conversation with the door closed, so that crooks know you are home and move on.

This video highlights the importance of installing a heavy-duty striker plate, or latch, on your front doors to replace the original latch which came with your door.

Watch:

Other security tips include ensuring that your front entrance is visible from the street, and take steps to ensure your home looks lived in.

A monitored alarm system and a security surveillance system can make a difference to your peace of mind, and may prove useful to police investigators in the case of a break-in like this one.

Getting together with your neighbours and beginning a Neighbourhood Watch program in your area is an additional step you can take to make your community safer. You can visit Neighbourhood Watch Brampton’s website to sign up and begin taking the necessary steps.

This week is Crime Prevention Week in Peel. Please enjoy this educational moment with Peel Regional Police Constable Sandro Strangio as he explains why you should upgrade your door latch.

Crime Prevention Week 2017 – Break & Enter

It's Crime Prevention Week (Nov 5-11th) and we'll be sharing daily tips. Cst. Sandro Strangio from Peel Police explains why you should upgrade your door latch.

Posted by Neighbourhood Watch Brampton on Sunday, November 5, 2017

 

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Hospital Crisis in Brampton

This past week we learned that 4,352 patients were cared for in the hallways at Brampton Civic Hospital last year.

According to a briefing note revealed by a freedom of information request and presented by the Ontario NDP at Queen’s Park, surge pressures at the Brampton facility have pushed occupancy rates to 114 per cent above capacity.

When a hospital reaches and exceeds its capacity, “Code Gridlock” is declared and the two words go out on pagers and smart phones to physicians, administrators, nurses and support staff, and over the PA system. Code Gridlock was declared eight times for a total of 65 days between January to April 2017. During these times, patients can stay in the emergency department up to four days waiting for a bed.

The emergency department at Brampton Civic was originally built to serve 80,000 visitors annually, but now sees 138,000 every year. This high demand has caused over-crowding and resulted in the opening of unfunded beds, with patients being placed in hallways.

According to the briefing notes released this week, hallway patients “experience excessive noise and reduced privacy, which negatively affects their overall patient experience and quality of care, and may extend their overall length of stay.”

How did it get this way? What happened to our second hospital?

Brampton Civic Hospital opened in 2007, promising to add to the existing capacity of 367 beds at the original Peel Memorial Hospital. However, later that same year, Peel Memorial Hospital was closed, leaving Brampton again with only one facility.

Brampton Civic Hospital currently has 608 beds to service a population of over 600,000 residents, or 1 bed for every 986 people. In neighbouring Mississauga, 721,000 residents have a choice of two full-service hospital facilites and more than 1,200 beds, which works out to 1 bed for every 600 people.

When the new Peel Memorial Centre for Health and Wellness opened earlier this year, the facility promised to relieve the pressure on Brampton Civic Hospital; However, the facility offers no beds, and data indicates that the Urgent Care Centre is already bursting at the seams. Visits to Peel Memorial are projected to exceed 65,000 in its first year, 20,000 more than what it is funded by the Province to handle.

To solve these issues, William Osler is requesting a total of $30.2 million in additional funding from the Province to meet the city’s current needs, and notes that according to a recent third-party study, Brampton will need the addition of approximately 772 inpatient beds over the next 20 years.

On Thursday, Brampton Mayor Linda Jeffrey released a statement calling on Queen’s Park to take action.

“Our community’s needs are not being met in a timely manner and this will only get worse if nothing changes” she says, in her online statement. “In the short term the Provincial Government needs to immediately approve and start building phase two of the Peel Memorial Centre for Integrated Health and Wellness. Over the long term it is critical we move forward on a third hospital immediately, as by 2041 we will be a city of nearly one million residents.”

Hospital Crisis in Brampton

Brampton Mayor discussing the recent revelation that over 4300 patients at Brampton Civic Hospital were kept in hallways due to serious overcrowding (called "Code Gridlock"). Update: A statement has been issued here: bit.ly/2hzZPLw

Posted by Brampton Focus on Thursday, November 2, 2017

 

Phase two of Peel Memorial refers to a plan that is expected— but has not yet been announced— to build a full service healthcare facility on the Peel Memorial site that offers a full emergency department and inpatient beds.

Last month, Queen’s Park announced it would fund six additional beds for Brampton Civic Hospital in anticipation of the surge of patients expected during the upcoming flu season.

Andrea Horwath, leader of the Ontario NDP panned the move. “This crisis in our hospitals is the result of years of cuts, underfunding, and a stunning lack of leadership by this Liberal government and their Conservative predecessors,” said Horwath via a press release. “The Wynne government’s offer of a few temporary beds falls so far short of what is actually needed, it just shows that she doesn’t get it. She has let patients down again and again.”

Patrick Brown, leader of the Ontario PC Party also issued a statement. “This government is responsible for Ontario’s hospitals suffering through four years of budget freezes. This government has continued to cut funding, pushing our hospitals to a breaking point. Now over 4,000 hallway patients at the Brampton Civic Hospital are paying the price.”

Bed shortages have been a challenge for GTA hospitals for decades, with capacity at area hospitals lagging severely behind population growth. Recent Statistics Canada Census numbers show that Brampton is the second-fastest growing city in Canada, nearly three times faster than the national average.

Another factor exacerbating the problem is aging demographics, with more people requiring care and putting pressure on the system.

Responding to the opposition parties, Premier Kathleen Wynne defended her government’s track record on healthcare, citing year over year health budget increases, including $1 billion in new funding for hospitals over the past two years. “We are investing an extra $140 million in hospital, home and community sectors to create over 2,000 new beds and spaces; That’s the equivalent of six medium size hospitals.” She explained. “There isn’t a single solution. The solution doesn’t always lie in expansion of beds in hospitals. There are community solutions and other spaces that need to be provided.”

Successive provincial governments of all stripes have contributed to this problem in Brampton, and considering the pace of development of healthcare infrastructure, a gridlock of patients in our hospitals will continue. Unless a significant move is made to address the problem, and quickly, the quality of care for our residents will continue to suffer in the hallways of political inaction.

 

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Census Shows Brampton is Young, Diverse

Brampton - Photo by Herman Custodio.

As fellow Bramptonians, the recently released 2016 Statistics Canada Census data confirms what we already know; Brampton is a young and diverse city that is showing strong signs of growth, and is an attractive place for business and government investment.

Brampton’s growth continues to be driven by immigration, as over 52 per cent (308,790 people) of its population was born outside of Canada, a two per cent increase from the 2011 Census. Residents in the city originate from 234 distinct ethnic backgrounds, up from 209 reported ethnic backgrounds in 2011. Visible minorities form 73.3 per cent of the population.

“Brampton’s growth, youth and diversity is really remarkable – making our city truly unique in Canada. Brampton is an exciting and dynamic place to live and work,” says Mayor Linda Jeffrey, in a press release. “People from around the world are choosing to live here. Business and all levels of government are recognizing that growth through targeted investment in our city.”

Brampton is in a competitive position relative to surrounding municipalities in the GTA where growth is slowing.

In the previous 2011 census results, Brampton’s population stood at 523,906 residents. Since that time, Brampton’s growth of 13.3% has outpaced that of many other notable cities like Mississauga (1.1%), Vancouver (4.6%), Calgary (13%), Montreal (3.3%), and Toronto (4.5%), maintaining its position on the list of fastest-growing municipalities in Canada. Edmonton surpassed Brampton with a growth of 14.8%.

 

Quick Facts:

• February’s 2016 Census release on population showed almost 40 people choose to move to Brampton every day.

• Brampton’s growth rate is double that of the Region of Peel’s, three times greater than Ontario’s, and two-and-a-half times greater than Canada’s growth rate.

• With a net increase of almost 70,000 people since the 2011 census, Brampton is the second fastest growing community of Canada’s largest 25 cities.

• August’s language data release highlighted Brampton’s diversity, as the number of languages spoken in Brampton rose to 115 from the 89 reported in the 2011 census.

• May’s census release on age showed that Brampton’s continues to rank among the youngest large cities in Canada:

• Brampton has an average age of 36.5, compared to an average age of 39.7 for the Greater Toronto Area, 41.0 for the province, and a national average age of 41.0.

News of a young and growing population bodes well for Brampton. It comes fresh on the heels of news regarding the establishment of a new university, built by a Ryerson University and Sheridan College partnership, in downtown Brampton. The new university will offer courses in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) to foster innovation and skills development needed for tomorrow’s workforce.

The City has committed, in principle, to invest up to $150M for the new post-secondary facility and a joint-use community space to support the university. The investment is subject to a final review after Ryerson tables its final proposal before the end of this year.

What is absolutely clear in the latest Census is that our city has outgrown its small town suburban stereotype. Understanding demographic trends helps the City plan investments and development to compete on a global stage. However, governments must also take this as a signal to lead by actively engaging our youth and the creativity and skills that people from diverse backgrounds bring to our city.

Forecasts show that Brampton’s population will reach 700,000 before 2028.

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A (Brief) History of the LRT in Brampton

Exactly two years ago, the City of Brampton made a decision regarding the proposed Hurontario-Main Light Rail Transit (HMLRT) that is likely to cast a long, dark shadow over the future of the city.

In a narrow 6-5 vote, a decision was made that stopped a modern, fast, and fully funded LRT system from entering the heart of the city. That decision was enough to turn down the Provincial funding on the table for LRT north of Steeles Avenue. The money is now gone.

The original plan called for the HMLRT to pull straight into the heart of downtown Brampton, to the GO Train station. Its purpose: Connect Brampton and regional rail service to the rest of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

Recently, Ryerson University announced they plan to build their new university campus in the downtown Brampton area. The colossal blunder of not seeing the future potential of the area and the benefit that high order transit would bring to future generations of this city, cannot be overstated.

Long before the Councillors and Mayor assembled inside the Rose Theatre for what was to become a marathon meeting, the debate over the decision to proceed with Metrolinx’s plan to enhance transit and regional connectivity had led to many heated discussions over the issue.

Map of Peel County, 1937. Notice the Hurontario-Main corridor clearly lineated as the principal north/south corridor, and the same as the proposed Metrolinx LRT route.
Map of Peel County, 1937. Notice the Hurontario-Main corridor clearly lineated as the principal north/south corridor, and the same as the proposed Metrolinx LRT route.

Never mind that, since long before any of these members of Council had even been born, the folks who ran the County of Peel in 1937 had maps drawn up that clearly show Hurontario Street as the de facto spine of the region. Yes, it’s true that beautiful, stately, homes line the east and west sides of Main Street within the core of the city, but, when the early families had those homes built, they realized that they were located on one of the only major north-south thoroughfares located for miles.

For more than a decade, Main Street was slated for upgrade to LRT given the success of the Brampton Züm bus service which began service in 2010. Ridership numbers along that route, and indeed across the city, continue to outpace expectations. In fact, in October 2015, Brampton Transit ridership was 2,026,614. In September 2017, it was 2,619,854, a 29% increase in two years.

Despite the rapid pace of transit growth, a few members of Council declared the mantra that, in this city, we had a preference, a desired order of preference, for our three major transit priorities: 1. To see All-Day Two-Way GO Train service delivered to our city; 2. An LRT built on the Queen Street transit corridor; And finally, 3. An LRT on Main Street. This argument was used, like so many others, to derail and distract from the facts of the conversation. But who said these three priorities had to be achieved in that specific order?

As if to help break the stalemate, the Province of Ontario rose to the challenge and delivered on the All-Day Two-Way GO promise two months before Councillors had to make their decision on the HMLRT, essentially adding more trains to the Kitchener line. That move was touted as the first step towards true Two-Way, All-Day GO train service to the region. Since then, service levels have been increased even more, and there is a plan to deliver full service in the future.

As for the Queen Street Corridor, plans to study options for higher order transit finally got underway in 2016. But for years, the City has been looking at ridership numbers along the Queen Street transit corridor and comparing them to the transit numbers on Main Street. Ridership on Main Street is growing faster, and is projected to be within threshold of LRT capacity sooner than Queen Street.

In the meantime, the fallout from the October 27, 2015 decision continues to cause major headaches. Councillors who voted against the HMLRT plan began a push to find alternate routes for the LRT, even as they began to see issues with the “end of the line” at Shoppers World. Three alternate routes were proposed: A route along the Etobicoke Creek, a route along McLaughlin Road, and one along Kennedy Road.

The Etobicoke Creek idea, was a plan to route the LRT onto a valley that meanders past the downtown area and ends at Peel Memorial Hospital, as an alternative to the Main Street route. Staff warned the Councillors that such a route would not be possible, prompting responses such as, “If they can land on the moon, surely they can build transit along the creek.” A group naming itself “Stop The Creek Route” mobilized to oppose the idea and save the green space, and at a meeting of the Toronto Region and Conservation Authority, the idea was shut down by a unanimous vote, with members of the TRCA board declaring the idea as “nuts”.

With only two options left, options that have been looked at previously and dismissed by experts and city staff, Council embarked on a environmental study to look at the routes, at a cost of $4.4 million. That study will take until 2020, and is unlikely to show those routes to be superior to the original Main Street route.

The alternative LRT routes being studied.
The alternative LRT routes being studied.

Back at Shoppers World, engineers and staff are facing a major challenge. Brampton is studying a left and right hand turn at Steeles Avenue to bring the LRT route up to the downtown GO Train station. With the Gateway transit teminal located on the north side of Steeles, all passengers will be required to disembark the Hurontario LRT on the south side, and cross the full width of the intersection (one of the busiest in Ontario) to complete their trip by bus. This poses a safety hazard and may now necessitate the construction of either a pedestrian bridge or a tunnel.

It isn’t clear how much a tunnel or pedestrian bridge will cost, but since these changes are required to make the LRT route conform to Brampton’s plans, and are not part of the original route proposed by Metrolinx and fully funded by the Province, the capital cost, including the capital cost for building the alternate route, will not be covered by the Province; If these are ever built, it is expected to cost Brampton taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars.

And now, with the recent announcement that a university is being proposed by Ryerson for the downtown Brampton area, an influx of people are expected, and the decision made two years ago will be proven by history to be one of the worst ever made by a government on behalf of its residents; It takes vision to build the future, and six councillors didn’t see it.

 

Front page of The Brampton Guardian, October 29, 2015, following the LRT decision.
Front page of The Brampton Guardian, October 29, 2015, following the LRT decision.

 

 

City Commits $150M to New University Campus

Artist rendering only. No images have been released to the public.

In a landmark decision, the City of Brampton has made a commitment to an investment strategy for a once-in-a-generation opportunity for a university and a centre for education, innovation and collaboration to be built in Brampton.

Following a recommendation put forward by city staff, Council endorsed, in principle, to invest up to $50M over 10 years into a new post-secondary facility, and up to $100M into a joint-use community space to support the university, business innovation and collaboration, community interaction and cultural growth.

Work has already begun between staff and the City’s partners on a memorandum of understanding, outlining the details of the partnership, and establishing a process for measuring the impact of the municipal investment.

A full report on the economic and social benefits of a new university facility and the new centre for education, innovation and collaboration is anticipated in the upcoming weeks.

Earlier reports indicated that the economic benefits of a university, including a one-time construction impact of $370 million (1,800 jobs), will eventually rise to over $220 million (1,500 jobs) per year, based on a medium-term enrollment of 5,000 students. The initial enrollment is expected to be 1,000 students.

Ryerson University, partnering together with Sheridan College, plans to develop a unique facility that combines education with innovation and collaboration – something “beyond a traditional university campus”, according to the City.

The university will offer courses in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics, called “STEAM”. Courses in cyber security have also been discussed to be part of the new university’s offerings.

Last October, Ontario Finance Minister, Charles Sousa, made the announcement of a $180 million fund to build two universities, one in Milton, and the second located in Brampton.

According to a staff report, the university will be located in Downtown Brampton, where local amenities and easy access to transit can better serve students. The details of the exact location are not publicly known.

Ryerson University and Sheridan College will submit their final proposal to the Province and a formal announcement is expected before the end of this year.

Future King Orders More Tea

Daniel Lewis, a local purveyor of tea, took to Instagram to announce that he has received a “royal” request from “the palace” for more tea. In a brief video, Lewis loses himself while seated in his car, clearly due to his excitement over the news. You can check out the video below.

Last month, T by Daniel was invited to serve tea to Prince Charles, also known as His Royal Highness, Charles, Prince of Wales, along with his wife, Camila, the Duchess of Cornwall, at an undisclosed location during a recent visit to Canada to celebrate our country’s 150 anniversary. At the time when they announced the news, Lewis was speechless, saying, “This is truly the greatest honour we have ever been endowed with and are completely lost for words.”

Well, given this latest development, it’s likely that the owners of the little tea shop from downtown Brampton will be busy preparing batches of their famous “Lion Chai” for the British royals; But don’t worry, you can have your own tea as well– Visit them at 46 Main Street North, and they will treat you to their traditional high level of service.

 

Brampton Community is Mortgage-Free

A small community located in Brampton is celebrating an important milestone thanks to the fact that they have become mortgage-free. By-de-Molen Co-operative Homes, located on Amsterdam Crescent, consists of 98 non-profit housing units, and is among the first co-op communities in Ontario to eliminate its debt.

Residents moved into the newly constructed homes back in June, 1982, and since that time, By-de-Molen Co-Op has provided affordable housing to over 500 families, supporting the skills and values of people living in and around Brampton, including large and small businesses. A portion of the homes are offered to residents who pay rents based on their income, and the remainder are available at market-value rates.

A quick walk-through of Amsterdam Crescent reveals an idyllic place, with well-maintained homes, mature trees and well-manicured landscaping. An administration office doubles as a community centre, and lush city parks surround the neighbourhood.

Schools are nearby; There is a hockey arena and pool located next door at Chris Gibson Recreation Centre, and easy transit access to other parts of the city means that By-de-Molen is, really, next to everything.

By-de-Molen Co-operative Homes states that their goals are to foster youth development, and build a community where members share a commitment to work together and contribute toward the safety, security, and well-being of all its members and other communities. “This important milestone that could not have been achieved without the support of all our members, neighbouring communities, provincial and federal leaders.”

Marlon Ospina, manager for the co-operative, says that the community’s special glow is thanks to years of sound management. “They have proven that Co-Ops can be a successful and self-sufficient business; They are financially sound, with healthy capital reserves, and the homes are in excellent shape.”

Ospina says that good management, wise selection of building materials and expert maintenance contributes to the beauty of the neighbourhood, and results in a high quality of life for its residents. “It works. When everything is maintained, the people are happy because everything is in good condition.”

The “End of Mortgage Celebration” takes place on July 8, 2017, beginning at 10 a.m., at 17A Amsterdam Crescent, Brampton, ON, L6X 2T5.

Cathy Baikie, and her granddaughter, Jordan. Cathy has lived at By-de-Molen since the first day it opened in 1982.
An example of a home at the By-de-Molen Co-Operative.

Respect Accessible Parking

The City of Brampton has launched an awareness campaign themed “Respect the Space,” urging drivers to be mindful and respectful of accessible parking spaces. Coinciding with National Access Awareness Week, May 28 – June 2, the campaign aims to emphasize that accessible parking is not a privilege, but a necessity for those with disabilities to move around the city with ease.

Pat Fortini, City Councillor for Wards 7 and 8, is the Council representative on the City of Brampton’s Accessibility Advisory Committee. He is reminding Bramptonians that accessible parking spaces are used by people with varying forms of disabilities, both visible and invisible. Examples of visible disabilities include when a person uses an assisted device such as a wheelchair or walker, and an invisible disability could exist if an individual has sensory or cognitive impairments and health conditions that limit their ability to walk. They are all eligible to use accessible parking spaces.

“When residents and visitors are more mindful about accessible parking spaces, we can make Brampton a more inclusive city.” Says Pat Fortini. “We can help raise awareness of this important cause and respect for people of all abilities, their independence and dignity.”

One in seven people in Ontario has some form of disability. As our population ages, it is expected that in the next twenty years this number will rise to one in five people.

#RespectTheSpace

In the last three years, 3,400 parking tickets were issued for accessible parking violations. Non-permit holders are advised to avoid parking in an accessible spot even if it’s just for a “few minutes” or when running a “quick errand”, and should avoid parking on the access aisles adjacent to accessible parking spots to allow those with disabilities to get in and out of vehicles with ease.

Permit holders who are eligible to park in an accessible spot are required to display their permit visibly on the dashboard or front windshield. When the permit holder is a passenger, an accessible parking space may only be used when the permit holder is travelling in the vehicle.

During the next few months, this message will be spread through visual reminders at select accessible parking spots, video messages from community members, social media, and other channels, as well as an enforcement blitz.

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