2020 Low Income Tax clinics at @SDCWR

Illustration of a man writing furiously while peeking out from behind a desk lamp Good Morning! Wanted to share that The Civic Hub will be running Low Income Tax Returns again this year starting 2 March 2019. Clinics are by appointment only. Our hours will be:

  • Monday and Wednesday – 10:00am to 8:00pm
  • Tuesday and Thursday – 9:00am to 5:00pm

We are also allowing drop-offs which can be completed at other times.

Please share with your contacts that the Climate Action Incentive, which all residents of Ontario are eligible to receive regardless of income, has increased this year. Amounts are as follows:

  • First Adult – $224
  • Spouse – $112
  • Child – $56
  • Family of 4 – $448

Canada Revenue Agency is helping provide volunteers to prepare the returns. I am looking for volunteers that would be interested in a receptionist type capacity, which would include booking appointments, greeting tax payers and collecting drop-off. Please share in case any of your contacts might be interested. I am looking for volunteers to cover three to four hour blocks, twice a week ideally.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Lesley Crompton
lesley@waterlooregion.org
+1‑519‑579‑3800 #5

Accountant by Charly W. Karl is used under a CC BY-NDCreative Commons — Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic license.

A note about Community Suppers from @AAP_KW

A note from Timothy Hegedus of Alliance Against PovertyAlliance Against Poverty:

Hi everyone,

I just wanted to let you know that the community suppers that used to be held at St Mark’s church on Wednesday evenings are now being held on Thursday evenings at Trillium Lutheran Church, 22 Willow Street, Waterloo, Ontario Map, phone 519‑886‑1880. (Trillium used be called St John’s Lutheran church.) It is fully accessible. The church is open on Thursday afternoons from 3:30 p.m. and dinner is served at 5:45 p.m. The Community Ministry Chaplain, Rev Susan Cole, is there between 3:30 and 7:00 p.m.

Please spread the word about this.

Thanks,
Tim

Alliance Against Poverty meets on the second Monday of the month, contact aap‑members@kwpeace.ca for more information.

Christmas Dinner Plans

This post was mirrored from Christmas Dinner Plans by the Kitchener—Conestoga Greens.

Even if Mr Ford hadn’t decided to put a stop to the $15 dollar minimum wage, it wouldn’t have raised minimum wage earners above the Low Income Cutoff (LICO) for Waterloo Region. Although we’re told we ‘recovered’ from the recession of 2008, Canadians earning minimum wage nearly doubled (from 6% – 10%) between 2017 and 2018. Minimum wage jobs don’t just have low pay, very often they are for precarious work.

Although Waterloo Region is a rich community, many members of our community are financially strained during the holiday season. (And for the rest of the year, too.)

MYTH: Poverty is not an issue in Waterloo Region. More than 1 in 10 people in Waterloo Region live in poverty. REALITY: Although Waterloo Region is a great place to work, live and play, poverty is an issue in our community. In 2006, approximately 10.2 per cent of residents (48,000 people) in Waterloo Region were living with low income. Imagine - you could fill the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium seven times with this many people! Did you know... • 12.2% or 13,750 children 0 to 17 years in Waterloo Region are living in low income.2 • 451,411 meals were served in 2011 through meal programs throughout Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo.3 • In May 2013, there were 8,727 cases on the Ontario Works (OW) caseload. This is a 39% increase in the caseload from September 2008.
2013 Poverty Myth Busters for Waterloo Region (page 3)
Download the PDF

That’s why the Green Party supports raising the minimum wage to a living wage, and implementing a Guaranteed Livable Income (universal basic income set at 10% above LICO). You can find out more about Basic Income from our friends at Basic Income Waterloo.

Unfortunately that’s not going to happen until we start electing more Greens. In the meantime, people are living in poverty and Christmas is coming.

The following is a list of free Waterloo Region Christmas Dinner options for people in need. If you (or anyone you know) is in need of a good dinner over the holidays, please share. (And if you’re able I imagine these organizations would welcome volunteers.)

I’m not sure who originated this list (I received as a paper handout), but most of the dinner locations listed here are for the City of Kitchener. If you know of any others in the rest of the region– Cambridge, Waterloo or the Townships, please share and I’ll add them to the list.

Friday December 14th, 2018

Trinity United Church – Christmas Dinner Community Can Dine – Elmira, Ontario
6:00pm-7:30pm
21 Arthur St. N., Elmira Ontario

Saturday, December 15th, 2018

Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church – Regular Saturday Supper
open 5:00pm-8:00pm – Supper served 5:30-7:30pm
57 Stirling Avenue North, Kitchener

Sunday, December 16th, 2018

KCI Christmas Dinner
10:45am – 1:30pm

787 King Street W., Kitchener (enter off King Street)
Tickets available at St. John’s Kitchen or St Mark’s Church
(Limited tickets available last week of November and first week of December)

Thursday December 20th, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Festive Dinner
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Friday December 21st, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Regular Hours
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Saturday December 22nd, 2018

Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church – Regular Saturday Supper – open 5:00pm-8:00pm
Supper served 5:30-7:30pm
57 Stirling Avenue North, Kitchener

Sunday December 23rd, 2018

Caper’s Sports Bar – Christmas Dinner
Noon – 3:00pm
1 Queen Street North, Kitchener
*Toy and Clothing giveaway

Monday December 24th, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Festive Dinner
11:30am to 1:00pm
Meal by St Vincent de Paul
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Ray of Hope – Festive Dinner
7:00pm-8:30pm
659 King Street East, (Back Door) Kitchener

Tuesday December 25th, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Christmas Dinner by Friends of St John’s Kitchen
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Ray of Hope – Regular Dinner
7:00pm-8:30pm
659 King Street East, (Back Door) Kitchener

Wednesday, December 26th, 2018

First United Church Christmas Buffet
11:30am-1pm
16 William Street, Waterloo

Thursday, December 27th, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Festive Dinner
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Friday, December 28th, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Festive Dinner
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Saturday, December 29th, 2018

Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church – Regular Saturday Supper
open 5:00pm-8:00pm – Supper served 5:30-7:30pm
57 Stirling Avenue North, Kitchener

Sunday December 30th, 2018

Ray of Hope – Lunch
Noon-1:30pm
659 King Street East, (Back Door) Kitchener

Monday, December 31, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Regular Hours
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

Tuesday, January 1st, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen CLOSED

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2018

St. John’s Kitchen – Regular Hours
11:30am to 1:00pm
97 Victoria Street North, Kitchener

PETITION: Ontario nonprofits and fair wages

From the Social Development Centre Waterloo Region:

A much needed minimum wage boost has come to Ontario. The nonprofit sector requires similar consideration to make the transition to higher labour costs as small businesses do. One step is to adjust Transfer Payment Agreements (TPAs) to accommodate higher labour costs in the next fiscal period as discussion begins on the 2018-19 Ontario Budget, as requested by the Ontario Non-profit Network’s pre-budget submission (PDF, 333 kBytes), supported by the Social Planning Network of Ontario. Many smaller non-profits without TPAs also require consideration for increased funding support to adjust to new employment standards and fair wage practices take effect.

http://www.socialplanningtoronto.org/helpontario
A needed minimum wage boost is coming to Ontario. Nonprofits will need a little extra help so we can continue to make a difference in our communities. | The province has offered a 22% reduction in the Corporate Income Tax Rate for small businesses. | Help us help Ontario. | Nonprofits need increased support to keep providing important services.
Help Us Help Ontario

GRT Affordable Transit Study

From our friends at the Social Planning Council of Cambridge and North Dumfries:

From: Social Planning Council of Cambridge and North Dumfries <info@spccnd.org>
Date: Friday, 1 September 2017
Subject: Affordable Transit Study – Help Get the Word Out

Hello everyone,

The Region of Waterloo is looking for volunteers to participate in a research study.

The purpose of the study is to evaluate the effects of different reduced fare transit passes. People who are selected for the study could get:


  • Off-Peak Pass: $23 per month
  • 20-Ride Pass: $25 per month
  • Combo Pass: $48 per month
  • Unlimited Pass: $65 per month

Please help spread the word and advertise in your offices / through your communications.

Community members can sign up to attend study information and registration sessions through Eventbrite links that can be found on the GRT website.

Please see the GRT webpage for more information/details of the study:

Transit Affordability Study – Grand River Transit

Our mailing address is:
Social Planning Council of Cambridge and North Dumfries
55 Dickson St,
Cambridge, ON N1R 1T8
Canada

Proposals to address the lack of affordable housing in Waterloo

I have been drawing attention to the lack of affordable housing in the city of Waterloo, and how the updating of the zoning bylaw now underway could do much to bring more lower-end-of-market rental units onstream.

I have three main proposals:

  1. Reduce the amount of parking required when a condo or apartment building is built. And don’t always require a parking space for accessory apts created in a home. Parking makes construction much more expensive. And in a home, the lack of room for a side-by-side parking spot now means an apartment cannot be allowed – this needs to change.
  2. Remove many other obstacles that now exist to creating apartments in houses and detached garages.
  3. Bring in Inclusionary Zoning in all new developments. This means that every building, subdivision, etc, would have to include a given percentage of affordable units. This leads to a mix of income levels in the same neighbourhood, as opposed to ghettoization.

These three measures could open up the rental housing market substantially.

Here are links to some my recent articles on affordable housing in Waterloo.

Letter to Waterloo Chronicle: City officials have to hear about it on new zoning | Waterloo Chronicle (22 July 2016)

Mention in Waterloo Chronicle (interview with editor Bob Vrbanac): Concerns over new zoning bylaw | Waterloo Chronicle (14 July 2016)

Waterloo Chronicle: Editorial: Take the time to listen (13 July 2016)

Submission to the city’s public input portal on zoning review: Letter to the City of Waterloo on Zoning and Affordable Housing | KWPeace (16 July 2016)

If you think these are good ideas, please write to the papers and your city councillor. There will also be a second round of public input in fall 2016.

Letter to the City of Waterloo on Zoning and Affordable Housing

To Waterloo staff and councillors:

Thank you for the opportunity to give input on the review of our zoning bylaw.

My response pertains mainly to Residential zones. At the end I’ll add some brief ideas on Commercial and Employment zones.

These are the underlying assumptions I am bringing regarding what kind of residential areas would be desirable to live in:

  • Remember that we are building neighbourhoods.
  • Every neighbourhood needs to include green spaces and gathering spaces that facilitate casual encounters with one’s neighbours.
  • Neighbourhood green spaces should be small, frequent, and linked together if possible — user-friendly.
  • Every neighbourhood needs to be walkable and cyclable. No overly long blocks should be allowed, especially if they block access to amenities. Where these mistakes have already happened — on Lester St. and Marshall St. — the city must do its utmost to buy back an easement to insert a walkway. Plus easements to continue these walkways right through to the LRT station beyond Phillip St. and from Lodge St. to the plaza. Extremely important that we find a way to do this.
  • Neighbourhoods would also benefit from having a community centre. Please zone in space for them. Make sure that a conversation is open between staff working on zoning and those developing a neighbourhood strategy.
  • Fewer parking spaces should be required for houses, apartments, and condos.
  • Many apartments and condos could be offered without parking. That is, less than one parking spot per unit.
  • In fact a maximum number of cars should be set, because of the nuisance that cars pose to neighbours. In the vicinity of my house several driveways are being used as parking lots for multiple cars, continually coming and going, so that it’s never peaceful to go to my front yard. I think anything above two cars on a residential lot should have to pay some kind of fee or penalty.
  • What this city lacks most is housing for the whole bottom half of the market, everyone from median income on down. No one is building for them. The young, the pensioners, and the people who serve us coffee, take care of the elderly, clean offices, and provide security at events, should be able to live among us in decency. Providing for this huge demographic should be a prime goal of zoning bylaws. We especially lack lower-end rental units.
  • Every neighbourhood should be planned to include a mix of income levels, and a mix of ownership and rentals.
  • As soon as Inclusionary Zoning becomes available in Ontario — expected in fall 2016 — Waterloo should make use of it for all new development.
  • If density bonusing is used (and I’m not sure it ever should be), the green space and/or affordable housing created should have to be in the same neighbourhood.
  • In traditional neighbourhoods we should make it easier to create secondary units, frequently without parking, to bring lots of affordable housing onstream.
  • And why should we care if a family wishes to use a one-bedroom-plus-den unit as two bedrooms to make it affordable for them? The city should not be in the business of harassing and micromanaging people. Making developers change dens to dining rooms will prevent all residents from having a home office/computer room or guest room. We should do a lot less micromanaging!
  • Finally, every neighbourhood should be visually appealing and where possible reflect the uniqueness of Waterloo and its heritage. New development should fit its context.

I hope these assumptions I’m coming from are also shared by Waterloo officials. How might they apply to the specifics of the zoning bylaw?

Discussion Paper on GENERAL REGULATIONS 2.10 Secondary Dwellings

If a house is spacious enough, why couldn’t it have a basement apartment and/or a coach house unit and/or an upstairs apartment or main floor addition, or even all of these?

Why should it matter that an apartment or coach house be with a detached house and not a semi-detached or townhouse?

Why couldn’t municipal services be connected up to a detached garage in the future (at the owner’s expense); why should the connection have to have existed prior to this bylaw?

Why should it matter what percentage of the floor area of the main dwelling the secondary dwelling is?

Why should every added unit have to have parking?

What DOES matter is that there be adequate green space on the property, that the added units meet standards of safety, space, and decency, and that noise bylaws be enforced. The lot frontage doesn’t matter. Whether the entrance faces the street or the side yard doesn’t matter. We need to pick our battles, so to speak.

I think we should encourage house designs that lend themselves to the future creation of accessory apartments. Give people choice. If a family wishes to create a unit for an elderly parent or a grown child, or both — or if a young homeowner or a widow wishes to add a “mortgage helper” apartment — make it easy to do these things. It should be expected that people will do it. Get rid of the rules that don’t matter. Allow there to be some units designated as no parking.

In this way hundreds of affordable accommodations could be added in the city very quickly, blending into their neighbourhoods and with no ghettoization.

Discussion Paper on LOW-DENSITY RESIDENTIAL

As above, we should anticipate greater density being added by homeowners over the years, and don’t let rules about bedrooms per hectare restrict this too much. It’s the gentlest way to increase density and provide much needed affordable housing.

Discussion Paper on HIGH-DENSITY RESIDENTIAL

I’ve only been able to view a map covering from Erb Street to University Avenue so it’s hard for me to pinpoint locations in the rest of the city.

I think our city needs more RMU-20 throughout the city to provide affordable rentals, now that the province allows frame construction up to six storeys. Not having to provide costly underground parking should allow more affordable units to be built. Don’t require a parking spot for every unit, especially Uptown.

Two good locations for RMU-20 are close to me in the core: Bridgeport Road between Peppler Street and Laurel Creek, and the houses just north of 151 King Street North.

Please change the zoning of 151-161 King Street North so that 151 with its tasteful-density additions is preserved, and the homes between there and the 12-storey building on the corner are designated RMU-20. Best use for that location.

The Bridgeport Road site could have RMU-20 closest to the homes on Peppler, and could step up to RMU-40 nearer the creek. I hope the city will facilitate removing the H provision where the gas station used to be (in front of the carpet warehouse). A good site for development, but not 25 storeys.

These suggestions would both decrease an 81 to a 20. But I’m happy to see an upgrade to RMU-20 proposed for Weber Street, Bridgeport/Royal, and Erb Street East and West. Another spot that should be upgraded to RMU-20 is the apartments at 29 Elgin Street — I’m not sure why it’s shown as R4 on the map. I would also be OK with some R-8 townhouses on King Street between Central Street and 151 King Street North, blending in with 151. That could fit nicely. Alternatively this corner might be a good location for a community centre serving both MacGregor-Albert and Uptown North. Something to think about.

I don’t think there should be any RMU-81 on King between Elgin and Noecker, and perhaps Marshall. (What happened at King/Noecker/James is a ghastly mistake, and I believe the city owes SERIOUS restitution to the St. Sofia church congregation for permitting this encroachment.) I suggest we need a category in between RMU-40 and RMU-81. Say RMU-50, which would allow 14 or 15 storeys. Existing neighbourhoods could more easily live with that.

Less than one parking space per unit should be required, in all of the above. Mandate more and better bicycle parking (this shouldn’t be a “bonus” point but basic). And we need to keep pushing the Region for better transit and be willing to contribute more revenue for it.

So I’m saying: more RMU 20, more allowance for accessory units in R 1-4, less parking, more bike parking, and no 25-storey towers: change RMU-81 to RMU-50.

This option is more affordable for everyone, allows neighbourhoods to feel coherent, and preserves the character of the city.

Discussion Paper on OPEN SPACE …

I like the vision of “urban open space system within built-up areas”. But I didn’t see anything about improving general walkability by avoiding overly long blocks.

Walk/cycle links need to be restored where poor planning in the recent past failed to provide for them: Hickory, Lester, Phillip to LRT and Brighton, Marshall, Lodge to plaza. This must be a high priority, so neighbourhoods can breathe again.

As mentioned above, it is urgent that the city buy an easement for a walkway close to the end of Hickory Street, or else all of Northdale will be locked in forever and frustrating to live in. And make sure the walkway continues all the way to the LRT station and University of Waterloo campus, with some green space along the way.

As for Lodge Street, there’s still time to acquire the land and build a walkway from Lodge Street to the plaza, while working to find a way to get an easement through to Marshall. Please make this a priority.

The ditch running behind University Plaza is a good potential place for green space. Would it be possible to extend it out to Weber and to Regina? This would provide more foot and bike access to the plaza, reducing bicycles on University. A footbridge (or several) over the ditch to the plaza, some trees and stone benches, and a walkway out to Lodge Street and eventually Marshall and Brighton … Please act now to make this happen! Put it on the zoning map. It could be a gem.

A parkette would also be the best use of the low land around the art gallery between Regina and Peppler. And it could eventually be linked across Peppler to Brighton Park. Please pencil it in and work toward assembling it over the years.

These are two or three examples of walking links and green space potential in my immediate neighbourhood. And are there any plans to complete Laurel Trail from Weber Street to Moses Springer Park? Just five or six houses …

Much more could be done with Laurel Creek uptown as well, as regards green space.

Parkettes need to be an integral part of all future development. As mentioned above, it should not be allowed to “horse-trade” parkland fees for green space far away; the green space should have to be where the development is. Same goes for affordable housing; it should have to be on the site.

Affordable housing, walkability, and green space. Zoning can do so much to enhance them all. In these ways we can build future neighbourhoods that feel safe and fostering for all the diverse ages, incomes, cultures, household types, and occupations of people who will live here.


Here are two articles on visioning urban growth that I found inspirational:

Density at a Human Scale, by Kaid Benfield:
http://www.sustainablecitiescollective.com/kaidbenfield/988196/smart-growth-not-all-urban-density-created-equal

Zoning for Happiness in Edmonton:
http://edmontonjournal.com/news/insight/in-a-happy-zone-how-planning-rules-can-improve-a-neighbourhood-vibe

And new info: Ontario’s Climate Action Plan will legislate away cities’
ability to require parking minimums:
http://tvo.org/article/current-affairs/the-next-ontario/why-parking-spots-in-the-gta-could-get-scarcer-and-pricier


Let me conclude with a few thoughts on Commercial and Employment zones:

Less parking! Less parking! Less parking! I support the points regarding parking made by TriTAG at:
http://www.tritag.ca/blog/2016/03/20/can-the-city-of-waterloo-move-beyond-parking-minimums/

Employment districts in north Waterloo need much better bike and bus access. They need to be much better integrated with the city and include mixed uses.

I also think we need a rule that nothing can be built that’s only one storey. Industrial “parks” are huge space wasters. If production needs to be on one level, some other use could be built above.

There also need to be strong incentives to include on-site renewable energy and green roofs.


Thank you for your time in considering all these suggestions regarding how Waterloo should grow. Our residential areas, and commercial and employment areas too, should promote neighbourliness and inclusion, and commitment to place, and good stewardship.

Eleanor Grant

Alliance Against Poverty Information Walk — Friday, 4 December 2015 at 6:00am

Photos and writeup now at Alliance Against Poverty Information Walk for CBC-KW "Sounds of the Season"

Alliance Against Poverty Information Walk for CBC-KW “Sounds of the Season”

3 December 2015 Kitchener-Waterloo

The Alliance Against Poverty (the AAP), a local grassroots group pressing for economic justice for everyone, will hold an Information Walk outside of THE MUSEUM at 10 King Street West, Kitchener, from 6:00am to 8:30am., where the CBC “Sounds of the Season” broadcast will occur tomorrow, Friday, 4 December 2015.

The AAP believes that rather than treating the symptoms of poverty, such as lack of food, with food banks and a lot of expensively administered, overlapping social programs, a simpler and more effective approach is a cure for poverty that eliminates the need for perpetual treatments of poverty’s symptoms. That cure is a Guaranteed Livable Income, also known as a Basic Income.

The idea of a GLI is supported by a wide range of people and groups from conservative to progressive. Martin Luther King Jr., for example, stated “the solution to poverty is to abolish it directly by a now widely discussed measure: the guaranteed income.” Canada’s former Conservative Senator Hugh Segal also has been an advocate of a GLI for decades.

In August 2015 the Canadian Medical Association passed a resolution recommending a GLI for Canadians, because doctors know that poverty has a huge impact on health, which drives up the costs of health care. A GLI would cost all levels of government a lot less than the present system of meagre social assistance. In addition, the Green Party supports a GLI.

The AAP wants to see a GLI implemented in Canada to wipe out poverty and make food banks unnecessary. During the Information Walk, AAP members will distribute handouts on the GLI.

However, the AAP says: “Until there’s a GLI, keep supporting the Food Bank.”

Contact:

Richard Walsh email: richard.walsh@greenparty.ca mobile: 519-897-3630

Welcome to the new home for KWPeace

KWPeace logo
KWPeace
Thanks to the sponsorship of Educators for Justice and the generosity of web hosting provider CCj/Clearline the KW Peace blog has moved to a new site at http://kwpeace.ca/.

An initiative of the Kitchener Waterloo Peace and Social Justice Community Symposium, the new site gives more flexibility to add things like a comprehensive calendar of all Peace and Social Justice events in the Kitchener–Waterloo area, and mailing lists for the KW Peace groups to coordinate those events.

Thank you for joining us on our new site!

–Bob Jonkman,
KWPeace Blog System Administrator.

March for Jobs Justice and the Climate, Sunday, 5 July 2015 in Toronto

People marching in the street
March for Jobs Justice and the Climate
A large rally is planned in Toronto for jobs, justice and the climate.

If you would like to attend but don’t want to drive, there is a bus going from Kitchener-Waterloo and Guelph.

Read more about the rally and sign up for the bus on the Facebook page March for Jobs, Justice & the Climate. More information is available at March for Jobs, Justice and the Climate web site.

Canada needs a new economy that works for people and the planet

From Alberta to the coasts, Canada is ready for an economy that creates good jobs for all, protects the air, land and water, and tackles climate change.

We don’t have to choose between the economy or the environment. By taking climate action, we can create an economy that is more fair and equal and generates hundreds of thousands of good green jobs. It means supporting the labour that takes care of people and the planet — education, healthcare, childcare and the protection of the land, much of it done by women. It means expanding localized agricultural systems to use less fossil fuels and provide affordable, nutritious food for everyone in Canada.

We want an economy in which workers earn a living wage – starting with a $15 minimum – and which prioritizes people who are unemployed, struggling in precarious, temporary, or non-unionized jobs or in industries being shut down. Which honours Indigenous peoples’ rights and recognizes their role in protecting the land, air and water for everyone. Which guarantees migrant and undocumented people are not excluded and receive full immigration status. Which ensures that black and brown lives matter as much as white ones and are free of racism and police violence. Which respects the limits of the environment made clear by climate science.

Climate action means protecting and expanding public control over our energy systems to ensure cheaper rates and a transition to clean energy sources. It also means building affordable, energy-efficient housing and better public transit.

This July, Toronto will host a Pan American Climate Summit and an Economic Summit, where politicians will face a choice: listen to corporate leaders from across the Americas gathering to advance an economic austerity agenda that is increasing inequality and causing a climate crisis felt disproportionally in the global south – or listen to the people.

On the eve of those summits, let’s make sure they hear our demands: a justice-based transition to a new energy economy, in which corporate polluters pay and ordinary people benefit.

The only way to overcome a small, powerful group who have a lot to lose is to build a massive movement of people with everything to gain.

On Sunday July 5, join the March for Jobs, Justice & the Climate in the streets of Toronto.