Dear Ward 7 Residents,
We hope this newsletter finds you in good health and high spirits as we all are adjusting to more hectic summer schedules. As usual, we want you to be in the loop on the events and highlights in our vibrant community. From Ward 7 and beyond, there is a lot of to be proud of and excited about, so let’s dive right in!
What’s Happening in Town
Oakville Transit Ridership
In May, Oakville Transit saw a significant increase in ridership. Youth ridership rose by an impressive 85%, showcasing the convenience, popularity and reliability of our public transportation system as a result of the flagship Ride free with PRESTO initiative. Moreover, senior ridership experienced a remarkable 127% increase, demonstrating the expanded accessibility of our transit service to residents who need them most.
Draft Town of Oakville Council Strategic Plan and 2023-2026 Action Plan
The Town Council has developed a strategic plan outlining its goals and vision for the next three years. This plan, coupled with the 2023-2026 Action Plan, aims to enhance the quality of life, improve municipal services, and elevate our community as a whole for all Oakville residents. We encourage you to familiarize yourself with these plans to better understand the town's priorities here: https://www.oakville.ca/town-hall/town-studies-plans-projects/strategic-plan-and-accomplishments/
Oakville Fire Dept Door-to-Door Fire Safety Awareness Campaign
The Fire Department is conducting a fire safety awareness campaign, which involves visiting residents' homes to promote awareness about fire safety. This campaign will commence on June 27, 2023, in Oakville. It will run until September 30, during which fire crews will visit over 3,600 homes to educate residents and distribute fire safety materials. The visits will occur between 6 to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 1 to 5 p.m. on weekends. Firefighters will be in uniform during these visits. It's important to note that residents are not obligated to grant access to their homes, as this is simply a courtesy call. Statistics show that one out of every three fire-related deaths occurs in homes without functional smoke alarms. Working smoke alarms are the only means to save lives. More details on this initiative can be found here: https://www.oakville.ca/home-environment/fire-safety/fire-outreach-events/
Help the Town improve by-law reference and search tool
Your input matters and the Town of Oakville is seeking your valuable feedback to enhance the by-law reference and search tool. I invite you to share your suggestions and ideas here: https://www.oakville.ca/town-hall/news-notices/2023-news-releases-archive/help-the-town-improve-by-law-reference-and-search-tool/ to make this tool more user-friendly and efficient, so we can streamline access to information and improve our service standards.
Celebrating Pride Month townwide
The Town is proud to support diversity and inclusivity among all residents! In celebration of Pride Month, rainbow crosswalks have been installed across the town. These colourful and dynamic symbols of acceptance and equality serve as a reminder that Oakville stands with its 2SLGBTQ+ community. The Pride Flag was raised in a ceremony at the Town Hall, a moment to honour and uplift all members in our community. Throughout the month of June, we come together to celebrate diversity, promote equality, and spread love throughout our vibrant town. Pride Month is an opportunity for us to reflect on the progress we've made, acknowledge the challenges that still lie ahead, and stand united in support of 2SLGBTQ+ rights. Oakville prides itself on being an inclusive and welcoming community that embraces individuals of all sexual orientations in our community and beyond. Happy Pride everyone!
Mayor Proclamation: Chinese Exclusion Act Day - June 23
This year marks the 100-year anniversary of the Chinese Exclusion Act, a significant event that had a profound impact on Chinese immigrants in Canada. In recognition of this anniversary and experiences of the Chinese community, Mayor Burton has proclaimed June 23 as Chinese Exclusion Act Day in our town.
The Chinese Exclusion Act, enacted in 1923, was a discriminatory piece of legislation that restricted, Chinese immigration to Canada. It marked a dark period in our country's past, where individuals of Chinese descent faced systemic racism and exclusion. The Act not only limited the number of Chinese immigrants allowed into Canada but also imposed severe restrictions on their rights and freedoms. By designating June 23 as Chinese Exclusion Act Day, Mayor Burton and the town of Oakville are taking a stand against discrimination and recognizing the struggles endured by the Chinese community during that era. This proclamation serves as a reminder to reflect on our history and work towards building an inclusive and equitable society for all.
Groundbreaking Ceremony - #3 Elementary School
I was very much delighted to witness and be part of the groundbreaking ceremony of #3 Elementary School. This exciting event marks the beginning of a new educational institution that will provide quality education for our young learners. The new school, scheduled to open in the 2024-2025 academic year, has been allocated a construction budget of approximately $30 million.
This educational facility will cater to 788 students from Kindergarten to Grade 8. It will be a three-story building with accessibility features, designed to incorporate 21st century learning environments filled with natural light. The school will also be equipped with air conditioning, with individual controls in each classroom, and will house modern facilities such as an open concept library, music room, stage, and double gymnasium. Additionally, the design will encourage a walking-to-school environment. Further, the school will include five dedicated childcare rooms, accommodating a total of 88 students. These rooms will offer services for infants, toddlers, and preschool-aged children,providing a comprehensive childcare solution within the premises.
Additional funding for Sixteen Mile Community Centre and Library
During a council meeting on June 19, the Town approved an additional $18.725 million funding for the construction of the Sixteen Mile Community Centre and Library, surpassing the initial budget expectations, due to rising costs to various factors, including market instability, labour shortages, resourcing issues, supply chain challenges, and the current inflation.
Expressing concern about the delays in completing the long-awaited community centre and library, I emphasized during the meeting that Ward 7 residents have been eagerly anticipating its completion and the wait time has been too long. I stressed the importance of approving the new budget to avoid significant further delays. In support of approving the new budget, my colleague Councillor Nav Nanda also advocated for its acceptance, noting that the project's benefits extend beyond Ward 7. We highlighted the community centre and library as a flagship facility that will have a positive impact on the entire Pan-Oakville and Pan-Halton region, setting an example for other community facilities in the area.
2023 Oakville Community Spirit Awards
I was excited to celebrate the remarkable individuals and organizations in our community through the 2023 Oakville Community Spirit Awards. These awards recognize outstanding contributions and dedication from individuals among our residents who make a dent in improving our community.
Black Music Month
Black music has profoundly shaped the cultural landscape, and its impact resonates across genres, generations, and continents. From the soulful melodies of jazz and blues to the infectious rhythms of hip-hop and reggae, Black music has been the heartbeat of communities and a catalyst for social change.
Black Music Month is a unique opportunity for our Oakville community to come together and honour the incredible contributions of Black musicians, singers, songwriters, and performers. It's a time to celebrate the diverse sounds and narratives that have shaped the very fabric of our community
D Day Parade
I was honoured to have participated in the Bronte Legion's yearly D-Day Parade, where I joined the local community in commemorating the courageous World War II heroes. This parade served as a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made by our veterans in their pursuit of freedom. The remarkable event was made possible by Bronte Legion and their devoted efforts in arranging this significant occasion are greatly appreciated by all. As a constant reminder to us all, it is even more critical in today’s world to emphasize the significance of recognizing and honouring the valuable contributions of our veterans.
National Indigenous Peoples Day at the 10-year Anniversary of OFFA
I was thrilled to join many others alike to welcome the much-anticipated 10th annual Oakville Film Festival from June 21 to 27, 2023. This year, we are embarking on a remarkable journey as we honor a decade of cinematic excellence while embracing the rich heritage of Indigenous peoples on the occasion of National Indigenous Peoples Day.
Oakville came alive with the magic of cinema, showcasing a curated selection of films from around the world. As we mark the milestone of our 10th Annual Oakville Film Festival, we take great pride in the exceptional stories we have shared with our audiences throughout the years. This festival has become a platform for filmmakers to express their creativity, challenge perspectives, and ignite meaningful conversations.
On a special note, it is such a meaningful merger that combines motion pictures with the recognition of National Indigenous Peoples Day. This day holds tremendous significance as we pay homage to the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples who have enriched our country's cultural fabric. Their deep-rooted traditions, wisdom, and artistic contributions have shaped Canada's narrative, and we are honoured to acknowledge and celebrate their enduring heritage.
Eid Al-Adha Celebration
Eid Mubarak! I would like to extend my heartfelt wishes to the entire community on the occasion of Eid. This auspicious day brings immense happiness and serves as a reminder of the values of compassion, unity, and gratitude.
I was delighted to join with MPP Stephen Crawford, Mayor Rob Burton and Councillor Nav Nanda to attend the Eid Prayers and festivities hosted by Dar Foundation. Witnessing the vibrant celebrations, engaging in prayers, and embracing the spirit of togetherness was a truly remarkable experience. The warmth and hospitality extended to us were deeply appreciated, and we were grateful for the opportunity to share in this important occasion.
As we celebrate Eid al-Adha, known as the Festival of Sacrifice, let us reflect on the significance of this day. It is a time to remember the story of Ibrahim's unwavering faith and willingness to sacrifice, embodying the values of selflessness and devotion. This occasion encourages us to show compassion, lend a helping hand to those in need, and foster a spirit of unity and inclusivity among our residents.
Canada Day in Oakville
🎉 Save the date! Canada Day is back at Bronte Heritage Waterfront Park on July 1! 🇨🇦 Join us for a fantastic evening of family fun, live entertainment, delicious food trucks, and an incredible fireworks display. Don't miss out! Check our page for the full event schedule and more details here: https://www.oakville.ca/community-events/events/events-calendar/canada-day/
Oakville Family Ribfest
Save the date! From July 28th to July 30th, 2023, Oakville Family Ribfest is returning to town at Sheridan College Oakville Campus. To join the Ribfest, there is a nominal entry fee of $5, with free admission for children aged 8 and under, plus free parking.
All proceeds from the Ribfest will be donated to charity. This year, the event is being hosted jointly by three prominent Oakville service organizations: Knights of Columbus Marian Council 3881, Oakville Lions Club, and the Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar. These dedicated service clubs tirelessly contribute throughout the year, providing crucial funding to various community organizations in our town. More details here: www.oakvillefamilyribfest.com
GlobalMedic, a registered Canadian charity, is looking for assistance from summer student volunteers to operate their community-based initiatives addressing food insecurity. You can contribute by either packing essential food items for pantry distribution or participating in hydroponics activities at our vertical farm. Volunteer positions are open every week, from Tuesday to Saturday, throughout the summer. To learn more about these opportunities and register, kindly visit https://globalmedic.ca/volunteer/ or reach out to them via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
To close, I hope you find the newsletter informative and please stay safe, hydrated and active as we embrace an eventful summer here at Ward 7 and townwide.