Over six months ago Covid-19 forced us to significantly alter the way we engaged with each other. We had to come up with new and creative ways to stay in touch with the community while respecting the safety protocols put in place as a result of this ongoing pandemic. As your City representative it has remained essential to me that I continue to provide meaningful public participation and engagement during the current circumstances. With this said my office has successfully held three virtual public meetings over the past two weeks as well as other zoom meetings previously.
On September 1st , we had an online panel of experts including city planning staff answer questions from residents on Intensification, Why it’s Important and How Do We Get There. Over 80 residents registered.
On September 9th over 50 residents joined our second online meeting to learn and discuss their concerns about Drainage Issues in the Lakeview neighbourhood.
And finally, on September 10th , my office along Councillors Jeff Leiper and Riley Brockington, co-hosted an online panel discussion with Leading Ladies Ottawa entitled, Let’s Move Forward: Anti-Black Racism. Over 60 people registered for this discussion. I want to give a special thanks to Faduma Yusuf, Executive Director of Britannia Woods Community House, for giving us her insights on the issue of systemic racism.
If we are to take anything positive from how we have had to alter how we engage, it is that video meetings with remote participation are not only a beneficial way to allow for public participation in meetings, but they also provide an accommodation for those who face challenges, whether it be a single parent who cannot leave to attend a meeting or someone with a disability. Whatever the challenge may be, remote participation has helped remove barriers.
As the pandemic hangs on I will continue to work with the Bay Ward community to have more zoom meetings for residents to ask questions and find out more about what is happening in their neighbourhoods and in city wide projects and programs. Please send me your suggestions for future topics at: