As you probably are somewhat aware, the City is proposing some very large cuts to its budget. Essentially, 10% across the board. The proposed budget recently went through the Budget Committee and will be going to full Council in January (and Councillors will vote on the budget at that point).
As you can imagine, there is significant resistance to these proposals. Here is an article in the Toronto Star about the impact of the proposed cuts on nutrition programs – it features local school, Secord. I understand that the cuts to the nutrition program are no longer being considered, after much wailing and knashing of teeth. Also, it was announced today that the Toronto Public Libary Board (members include several Ford-ites) rejected the 10% cut.
And now, I will fully expose my bias – it is being proposed to de-classify the Secord Community Centre as a priority centre. My family uses and lives near this Community Centre, as do many of our friends and the school mates of our four year old son. A de-classification means that the programs that are currently being offered free of charge will be offered for a fee. A major outlet for people and their children in a high-needs area will no longer be as accessible. Let me tell you, this Community Centre is BUSY, PACKED and POPULAR in an area that needs it.
If you would like to voice your opposition to de-classification of the Secord Community Centre (among other cuts) a petition is being organized through the Secord School Parent Council. A form letter has been made, and is available to sign in the main office of the Community Centre at 91 Barrington Ave. If you’re walking by, poke your head in and sign a form.
For more information, you can email Secord.Council@gmail.com
It’s going to be really important that the many small details of the City’s proposed budget, like this one, don’t get lost amidst the noise of the larger issues like TTC and the Police. It’s these little programs – death by a million cuts – that will affect the daily lives of all Toronto residents. And when you look at it from a 50,000 foot perspective, it’s almost impossible to believe that the City’s budget ‘crisis’, imagined, perceived, or even slightly real, can be solved by taking away programs from our children.