Sanctuary and Serenity

Archive for May 2010


Latest G20 security preparation plans revealed

Richard Southern, Jackie Rosen and 680News staff May 20, 2010 09:14:20 AM

TORONTO, Ont. – Unscalable fences, plywood for the windows and emergency food supplies –these are among the latest security measures being suggested in advance of the G20 summit in Toronto end of June.

The RCMP is also recommending that the downtown Bay Street crowd wears civvies during the summit, so as not to stand out from the corporate-hating protesters.

In addition to the wardrobe, downtown office towers plan on stockpiling enough supplies for several days, in case they ever get locked down.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the CN Tower has confirmed that Toronto’s tallest building will remain closed to the public during the summit.

Due to security concerns, the tower will keep its doors shut from Friday, June 25 to Sunday, June 27, and will re-open on Monday, June 28.

The CN Tower, which is visited by thousands of people every weekend, is the latest building to announce it will be closed during the G20 meetings, which will be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

Just last week, the Toronto Blue Jays said they plan to move their weekend series versus the Philadelphia Phillies, to Philadelphia. The games were highly anticipated due to the return of former Jays ace Roy Halladay.

The CN Tower’s announcement follows Tuesday’s firebombing of an RBC branch in Ottawa. The group which claimed responsibility for the attack has stated that they plan to take their protest to Toronto’s G20 meetings next month.

As a result, all banks are on high alert, and officers said they are prepared to deal with any problems leading up to and during the meetings.

To see the original post, click HERE.

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Demonstrators against G20 won’t be muzzled, OCAP president says

680News staff May 20, 2010 15:45:32 PM

An umbrella group of social activists has said it plans to protest next month’s G20 summit because the leaders don’t represent the interests of ordinary people.

John Clark with the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty said demonstrators won’t be muzzled.

“If you are going to impose this poverty and misery on people throughout this planet, don’t think that you’re going to be able to ask them to confine themselves to sedate, nice polite methods of struggle,” Clark said. “People, by God, are going to resist and they have a a damn right to.”

Demonstrators said they will be protesting for self-determination for indigenous people, climate justice, income equity, community control over resources and migrant justice.

To read the original post click HERE.


Join us for a planning and organizing discussion of anti-poverty activists from across the city on Saturday, June 12th.  Send a representative or two from your organization.  Encourage any youth or resident groups, or agencies working to end poverty to join us at the forum.
A COMMUNITY PLANNING FORUM FOR ANTI-POVERTY GROUPS IN TORONTO
Some steps forward, but many more to go:
How can we push ahead and get real change?
Join with other community groups across the city fighting to
end poverty; share what’s happening in your community; hear
what others are doing; connect with new ideas; explore new
opportunities to open the way for change.

The meeting will be at the North York Memorial Hall at the North York Centre from 10 AM-3 PM (5110 Yonge St., near the library–North York Centre subway station).

We will be looking at where people are being actively engaged around issues related to poverty, different strategies for fighting poverty, ways in which we can help each other achieve our local goals and broader successes, and how we might communicate better with new and existing allies.

***Please let me know how many will be attending, so we can plan for refreshments / child care.
For RSVP and more information, please contact:
Mary Micallef – 416-351-0095 ext. 251 or mmicallef@socialplanningtoronto.org
http://socialplanningtoronto.org/
• Child minding assistance available on request
• This venue is wheelchair accessible
• Refreshments provided


People who are on the *system*…welfare, ODSP… they get a bad wrap.  Just because they are there, doesn’t mean they want to be there.

Some folks end up there through no fault of their own.  You lose your job because you fall ill.  Your rent is 800.00 –  you can no longer afford it.  Or your landlord of 11 years sells his building and informs all that live there that they have two months to move.  But now you are on the system.  You’re used to working and making good money – but that’s not the case now.  Now you must survive an entire month on 591.00 – that’s rent, food, clothes, medical needs, transportation.  Your rent *allotment* is considered to be 345.00.  lol  In a city where it costs approximately (at the lowest) 425.00 JUST to rent a single room where you must share bathroom facillities – what does that leave you to live on?   166.00.  So you think you’ll get a roommate and lower the costs?  Don’t think you can get just *any* roommate – if it’s the opposite sex they will call you a couple and decide your fate on what that other person earns!!  And what happens if you CAN’T find a new place to live?  Now you’re homeless…A buspass is 130.00.  If you want to search for work or go to a food bank or another resource to get food – churches, community centres.  What do you spend on food a month?  For a single person?  And I mean on food you like… food that’s good for you.  If you go to a food bank what do you get?  You get starch and carbohydrates.  You get rice, pasta, tin foods.  And it’s not just one race of people going there.  Each person has different requirements.  In some places the people cannot eat specific foods for religious reasons.  People with diabetes can’t eat any of the above.  And don’t expect meat or salad.  If you were to have a choice to eat what and how much you need, what would you require to spend on food?  To live a healthy and dignified life?  What about a phone?  You need a phone to call for jobs and get call backs, right?  So add that in.

Without proper nutrition you get sick.  Your health care costs rise.  Your confidence and self esteem drop.  Try looking for an apartment and telling your new landlord that you are on the system… Try explaining to a new boss in an interview what you’ve been *doing* with yourself for the last few months.  Attempt to get a job where no one is hiring.  Then you start to make choices.  Do I buy the food I need or get a buspass?  Do I pay rent or bills?  If I get an interview, how will I get there and what will I wear?  If I get a haircut do I cut out some food?

Now – knowing that people are starving – let’s take a look at the special food diet.  This was implemented to supply people with foods they need depending on their illnesses.  At first it wasn’t well known, but as time went on folks discovered it and took advantage of the fact that they could actually get money for FOOD.   So the numbers went up…. well, why not.  People need to eat.  So now the gov has decided that it’s *unsustainable* to feed people?…they are phasing out this diet.  Now you must reapply to the ministry of health, as apposed to social assistance.   They will have a list of illnesses they deem appropriate to cover and it will be less money than recipients were originally receiving, perhaps even coupon type mentality.  And not all recipients are being grandfathered into the new plan.  Another cut, another slash to the poor.  Way to go – so proud of our government.

People – all people – have a right to food.  There is certainly enough of it on this planet and our government knows this.  But here’s the catch.  If they raise the rates of social assistance – they have to raise the minimum wages in companies.  Minimum wage is still below the poverty line.  But if social assistance is near that rate – then they believe people will have no desire to take those low paying jobs.  And if they don’t provide social assistance and they just let people die in the streets – they believe there will be a massive uproar in the people…  Well, that’s what they need.  Massive uproar.  Because they ARE starving people.

Food banks were introduced as an emergency measure – they weren’t meant to be part of your monthly income.  They weren’t meant to be sustainable.

Health, and healthy food choices should be a normal part of life.  Life with dignity.  Shame on our government for starving it’s people.  No one can be expected to get ahead when they are hungry and this has been proven just by the fact that we have lunch programs or breakfast programs in schools for our children.  What are we doing?  Feeding them young and then starving them when they grow up?

And so what if you DO get a job, a part time job to start?  They take half of your pay OR MORE… each month.  So you work this month – they take it off your next cheque…but what if you don’t work next month?  They don’t help you get ahead.  They hold you down.

Some folks have life long illnesses.  They are on the system.  Did they ask to get Cancer, or AIDs or Diabetes, or Myofibrillar myopathies?

Truly – stop misconceiving the world around you…know your facts.  Help raise awareness – when we raise the lowest of us, we all raise to new heights.

Single folks aside – what about people with children!  (Thanks Kayla B for pointing this out.)  People have to go day to day worrying about how to feed their children.  Have you ever had a small child?  In school?  Try paying for all the trips.  Try telling your child that 6.50 is too much and they have to stay home when all the other children are going on a trip.  Try sending your child to school with a lunch comprised of food bank goods.  Try spending money on gym suits, day planners, locks for lockers…etc.  The list never ends, as anyone with kids knows.  And this doesn’t even cover clothing them… in what they feel comfortable in – because kids make fun of each other.  And what about how they are treated when they are asked what their parents do for a living?  Bring your parents to school?  Really?  How about having your friend over at lunch time?  What are you going to feed them?

Then there’s a whole other section – folks that were brought up on assistance – and then the grown up children go on it.  It’s all they know.  Maybe they had a parent that had a life long illness, that couldn’t work.  All that child knows is the system.  We all learn coping mechanisms and tools of survival from our caretakers, our providers – and this is what they learn.  No one knows anything but what they are taught when they are younger.  As you get older you learn for yourself.  But it’s ok – because if they get a job – assistance will just take some of that money to keep them there.

All in all.  Poor people are not criminals, or lazy or wanting to be on the system.  They are aware that working provides better money.  They are aware that it’s no fun to be stressed out because every minute of the day is spent searching for ways to get food – for themselves and maybe for their loved ones as well.  If the system covered at least the basics – a place to live and food in their bellies… they would have a life with some dignity and they would be a stronger people.


Fired Proud FM hosts weigh in as they pursue a wrongful dismissal suit.

Scott Dagostino / Toronto / Tuesday, May 18, 2010

“I understand the general public’s whiplash feeling,” says Shaun Proulx of being abruptly fired — along with fellow hosts Deb Pearce, Mark Wigmore and Patrick Marano — from Proud FM on May 5. Proulx says he doesn’t know why they were fired, but that the pink slips were issued after the group asked for a meeting with station management.

Despite rumours, Wigmore says the meeting wasn’t about money.

“We weren’t stupid enough to think we could go in as a group and scream ‘Unionize’ or ask for raises,” he says.

With the three-year-old station struggling to become profitable, Marano says everyone was “toeing the company line.” But, Pearce says, “Certain things kept creeping up and we wanted more clarity.”

Proulx points to April 12, the day the station became Glee FM. In a marketing tie-in with Global TV, Proud FM devoted its entire programming schedule and website content that day to the show.

“The station loves to use the word ‘transparency,’ but this deal wasn’t very transparent,” says Proulx. “Hosts were being asked to do some advertorial stuff that we’d never been asked to do before,” including using talk time to plug products. “I have a bit of an issue with just being handed something and told to shut up and read it. I have a lot of credibility behind my name. So does Deb, so does Mark, and so does Patrick. Proud FM hired us for our brands, brands that we built.”

Wigmore says each host was getting contradictory answers from Proud FM operations manager Bruce Campbell, so the foursome decided a group meeting would clear everything up. But after three requests, Pearce says, they were fired via email.

“It all happened over a grand total of 48 hours,” says Wigmore.

Campbell says there were “significant differences between management and the affected individuals as to how the business and administration of the station — both on-air and commercially — should be conducted.”

This, says Pearce, is not the case.

“They’ll never know what we wanted to meet about because no one ever took the time, respectfully, to meet with us,” she says.

Respect, Pearce continues, is at the heart of this story. She says she felt betrayed when station management ignored a two-week deadline to endorse her nomination for honoured dyke at this year’s Pride festival.

The station, “that in theory said, ‘I support you,’ now would not endorse it or do anything publicly,” she says.

To read more, click HERE.


When we revealed that there were seven Banksy pieces in Toronto, one thing we didn’t reveal were those pieces’ locations. We were initially sworn to secrecy—or at least vagueness—from one of our sources; there were concerns that disclosing the precise locations could lead to pieces being stolen or damaged.

Now, a few days and a good amount of damage later, we think it’s time to point the Banksy-hunting masses in the right direction.

We’re doing this for a few reasons. For one, the pieces are public, and meant for the public, for better or worse. Their accessibility is part of their form—and Banksy often makes it part of his (hers? their?) work’s content. The internet is the internet; we want you to see what’s left of the work yourselves, on the street. The pieces, as well, are disappearing fast—there are now just three fully intact ones left, and one of those is newly behind a protective layer of plastic. What’s more, those who’re committed to ruining the pieces weren’t waiting for an itinerary to do so. And, finally, we spoke to our secrecy-sworn source, and—with some reservations—they agree.

To read more, click HERE!!!


My stalker and it’s babies!!!  They are all so fluffy and cute – and not to be messed with. lol  I got as close as I dared to get pix….

(They still scare me!!!) lol  But isn’t it sad… see the fence behind them?  And in front of them a large expanse of cement.  A parking lot.  So unnatural…  Poor animals don’t stand a chance with us humans living near them. 😦

Babies!
Babies!
Babies 2!
Babies 2!
Babies 3!
Babies 3!



  • faithfulwoman4you: Some people are drama queens and need a lot of turmoil in their lives!! In a way thats sad, because it is nice to have peace and serenity but alas the
  • Writing Lessons from Dr. Seuss | Tess Fragoulis – Writer: […] them, and can still recite good portions of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Too Many Daves, and The Zax, which I even acted out in my bedroo
  • serenityunicorn: You are very welcome! Sorry it took me so long... haven't really been on my blogs in a long time lol