Pull on those turkey-eating pants, and get ready for the most food-forward weekend of the year. But before slipping off into a tryptophan-induced haze, here's some news: two new surveys show that Ford's support is slipping; the removal of the Jarvis bike lanes might just benefit cyclists in the long run; Toronto's paramedics are unhappy and making their displeasure known; the fight to shut down Marineland gets some star power; and Toronto's food banks seek, you guessed it, food (and funds).
Things Mayor Rob Ford may not be thankful for this year: Angus Reid Public Opinion and Nanos Research (and the media, bike lanes, streetcars…we could go on, but this could take all morning). According to polls published in the Globe and Mail and Toronto Star, support for the mayor may be slipping, with the majority of Torontonians stating that they would not vote for Mayor Ford again, and that change is needed. Happy Thanksgiving, Ford Nation!
Public works committee chairman Denzil Minnan-Wong says that in order to make money, you have to spend money. Oh, no, wait—that’s not right. He said that the removal of the Jarvis Street bike lanes was an “important component” to getting a network of separated bike lanes up and running. So, in order to build infrastructure for cyclists, you have to remove infrastructure for cyclists. This is all starting to really make sense.
Make sure you’ve cooked your turkey really well this year, and try not to cut your finger while carving that big bird (or your Tofurkey, whatever, we’re not here to judge), as paramedics may be harder to come by this long weekend. In an attempt to force the City to hire 200 more paramedics, a group of Toronto EMS workers are refusing to work overtime. This work-to-rule job action comes just months before a major scheduling overhaul that will go into effect in January and will see senior paramedics working nights and weekends, long-time partners split-up, workers relocated to other stations, and some EMS stations shutdown overnight.
The fight against Marineland has just received some star-powered support in the form of Ric O’Barry, the star of the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove. The animal activist (who once trained dolphins) has lent his support to Zoocheck Canada and former Marineland employees in urging Ontario to enact laws to protect captive animals. Just how bad are the problems unfolding at Marineland? According to O’Barry, it’s the “worst park” in progressive countries. Ah, yet another claim to fame.
Lastly, before you head off to stuff yourself silly, a quick reminder that the Daily Bread Food Bank’s Toronto Thanksgiving food drive is seeking $400,000 in donated funds and, as always, donated food. Perishable food donations can be dropped off at any fire hall or participating grocery store, with baby food, powdered milk, and canned fruit and vegetables among the most-needed items.