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Showing posts from June, 2020

Breaking the Cycle - Chloe Ngakosso and Samantha Daniel

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Sometimes it's easier to stay silent. To not rock the boat. Put your head down - and hope things just get better on their own. Unfortunately when it comes to racism that's how cycles perpetuate. 
Even when issues are addressed they may be done behind closed doors and there is little to no accountability to the victim or their families to know if anything was actually done - or if the incident was just swept under the rug to avoid confronting it. Then, when no concrete changes seem to be forthcoming to address issues like institutional racism (aka systemic racism) - how can one feel good about the educational institutions our children attend, especially in regards to ethnic minorities? 
Thanks to Chloe Ngakosso and her mother Samantha Daniel and others like them who have raised their voices to demand change, it looks like change may be coming. When we first started talking to Samantha about publishing their story locally last week there had been no response from the Thames Valley…

St. Thomas Cooling Centre is at 423 Talbot Street, Free City Transit Available

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HEAT ALERT, PLEASE SHARE: The St. Thomas Cooling Centre, where you can shelter from the heat, is at 423 Talbot Street. Hours are 8am-8pm. There is also free transit in the city for anyone that needs to get there.

*Want to donate something? Bottles of water would be appreciated.*
The normal city locations our vulnerable could shelter in to get a break from the heat are currently closed to the public, such as the St. Thomas Public Library and the Joe Thornton Community Centre. In additional to that, the various restaurants and coffee shops, including the The Grace Cafe, are not allowed to have guests take a break inside during the current emergency measures.

The location at 423 Talbot Street has capacity for 30 occupants at a time right now, but they have the ability to expand if needed. If they receive more people that need shelter from the heat at the moment they can rotate people through at 20 min intervals.

I (Grayden) chatted this afternoon with Lori Fitzgerald, who administers th…

Horton Farmer's Market Approved by St. Thomas City Council

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Monday evening, St. Thomas City Councillors voted unanimously to accept the new proposal from the board of the Horton Street Farmers' Market. Unfortunately, due to audio issues we were unable to hear the debate or hear all the details on how the new plan differs from the previous one. It's great to hear that the new plan was approved however, and kudos go out to the Horton Street Farmers' Market Board for getting it done.

The revised plan was not included in City Council's minutes, so on Sunday (June 7th) we reached out to City Councillor Lori Baldwin-Sands as she is also the Chair of the Horton Street Farmers' Market Board to find out all the details on what was changed so we can share that and are waiting to hear back from her.

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UPDATE: Councillor Lori Baldwin-Sands contacted us this morning to fill in the rest of the details. While the main building will be closed, the washrooms …

#BLACKLIVESMATTER Protest in London, June 6, 2020

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If you weren't at the #blacklivesmatter protest in London, Ontario this weekend. You missed something special and important - hopefully historic, but that is up to us. Members of our community need the help of everyone to fix the systemic racism in our society. If you're not aware of what has been going on, or how our systems and institutions run, then it's time you educate yourself. Right now, it's our minority groups that are doing all the heavy lifting - but it's time for that to change - because things can't continue as they are. It has been ignored for too long. One of the organizers simple requests was to defund the police that are in the London school systems (SROs) and use that funding for things that will be more beneficial for members of their communities.

“We are seeing a spike in police officers responding to mental health crises and they aren’t qualified to provide mental health support and counselling to vulnerable people, especially BIPOC.” Stat…