Welcome to August, your last real chance to do all the summer activities you planned. That’s right, this is the month you finally get back into rollerblading. In the news: cab drivers make a stink about a washroom ban; July weather was just outlandish; some people look to move on from Danzig Street; Vaughan residents worry that transit will increase traffic; and another G20 lawsuit!
Cab drivers have apparently been banned from using the washroom facilities at Billy Bishop Airport for the past two weeks. The ban is said to have started after the drivers were blamed for a messy washroom on the first floor of the mainland building. Two portable toilets showed up at the end of the taxi line with a note saying that they are for the use of the drivers, who are also responsible for the cleanliness of the outdoor stalls. Pee-eww.
Those portable commodes are probably a dreamland in the summer heat, especially this July, where temperatures averaged 24.3 C, nearly 4 degrees higher than usual. This is just one of the strange weather conditions that have existed over the past month in Toronto and that also included 13 days with over 30 C temperatures, about 10 more smog days than last year, and at least two floods. Who says the world isn’t ending?
Families in four of the 101 units at Toronto Community Housing’s Danzig Street site have requested that they be relocated in the wake of the July 16 shooting that killed two and injured another 23 people. Five of the seven transfer requests from last year have been processed and there is a waiting list for each housing complex. Not all residents of Morningside Coronation feel threatened by the past violence, but it is understandable that some would feel shaken up enough by the tragic events to want to get out of there.
Residents of Vaughan are worried that an incoming transit hub will actually increase traffic in the area—of course, if the residents of Vaughan use the transit hub, then traffic will probably do anything but increase, but hey, that’s not important. The Concord West Ratepayers Association is leading the charge against the transit plan as it stands now. They have hired a planner of their own to create an alternative proposal that puts the site of the hub north—rather than south—of Highway 7 and avoids the Bartley Smith Greenway, one of the area’s last remaining parcels of green space. Provincial authorities, however, say that they have been protecting that space for transit over the past 20 years and that the residents’ plan compromises the objectives for what the transit hub will do. The City is supporting the residents’ plan, but also believes there is more room for discussion.
It is the world leaders’ meeting that just keeps on giving. A $1.4 million lawsuit has been filed by seven women from Hamilton against the Toronto police. The Hamiltonians, who were released without being charged, allege that police wrongfully arrested them as they left a Yonge Street restaurant on the Sunday of the 2010 G20 in downtown Toronto. Some of the plaintiffs also believe the reason for their arrest was that they were women with hair on their legs—an assertion their lawyer says is supported by an Ontario Independent Police Review Director’s report that found the line “all parties appear to be protesters; back packs; clothing and females all have hairy legs” included in an officer’s arrest notes. Just because something is a double standard does not mean it is double the grounds for arrest.