Erica Kelly is running for Etobicoke Centre City Councillor. As the only progressive council candidate running in Etobicoke Centre, she will fight for everyday people; for the single mother, for the student looking to embark upon a hopeful future, new families, and the seniors trying to make ends meet.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE THING TO DO IN YOUR COMMUNITY?
Walk my dogs through West Deane Park. Green space is so vital to our city and to Etobicoke. Our community experiences some of the worst air quality in the city due to our proximity to the highways and airport, so these spaces are very precious. We need to expand them.
TELL US ABOUT THE GREATEST CHALLENGES YOUR COMMUNITY FACES?
Fair and reliable access to quality transit. Knocking on doors, I have spoken with many people who tell me that their place of work is less than ten minutes away by car, but nearly an hour by transit. Over 90 percent of airport workers drive to work because there is no reasonable transit option. The majority of these workers are low-wage employees, and driving every day is expensive for most working people. Additionally, connecting to downtown Toronto with our current transit is time consuming and exhausting.
We need improved north-south bus routes in Etobicoke, with articulated buses where necessary to better connect our communities. We also need the Eglinton LRT to be completed ASAP, while taking communities West of Martingrove into consideration - something the current plan is missing. In Etobicoke we need cycling infrastructure that doesn’t reduce lanes of traffic, utilizing already available public land may be the solution.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO TO IMPROVE WOMEN'S HEALTH IN YOUR COMMUNITY? ...WOMEN'S ECONOMIC SECURITY IN YOUR COMMUNITY? ...WOMEN'S SAFETY IN YOUR COMMUNITY?
I will work with council, community groups, and residents to get a community center built in a location that makes sense. We cannot put the interests of developers ahead of our people, and seize the opportunity. The reality is that Etobicoke Centre receives less community services than any other part of Toronto. By improving public services that women are most likely to use, we can help improve health outcomes, economic opportunities, and safety. Alleviating poverty is the best way to improve safety for everyone, particularly women. I will pursue an aggressive strategy that includes youth programs to help our young people be productive and positive; transit to connect people to jobs, services and their neighbors; affordable housing; and more jobs in Etobicoke. In addition to this, city-wide public safety campaigns, well lit streets and paths, and a community-based approach to policing will all help to improve safety for women across Toronto.