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cityscape

Eviction Prevention Programs a Vital but Limited Service

Here's why tenant representation matters.

Eviction is the sword hanging over every renter’s head. Whether someone struggles to pay their rent each month or not, every renter knows his or her landlord possesses the capacity to put them out of their home. Thankfully, that doesn’t happen often. And eviction prevention programs are vital in ensuring that not all of the people who go before the Landlord Tenant Board (LTB) end up evicted. Whether it’s the Tenant Duty Counsel Program (TDCP) or the city’s emergency fund for rent and other urgent housing costs, eviction prevention programs offer a range of services intended to keep people in their homes.

For those comparatively few tenants who end up before the LTB, the majority are there because they’ve failed to pay some amount of rent. In 2013-14, the total number of landlord applications to the LTB was 81,748; rent non-payment was the issue in 64.6 per cent of those cases.

That so many cases are tied to a failure to pay rent points to a close relationship between eviction and poverty.

Keep reading: Eviction Prevention Programs a Vital but Limited Service

culture

Historicist: Pedestrian-blaming, 1930s style

Toronto struggles to reduce the number of traffic fatalities during the holiday season.

The Toronto Telegram, May 26, 1934.

The Toronto Telegram, May 26, 1934.

The Christmas of 1936 was a black one for Toronto. On December 26, newspapers reported on the holiday slaughter: three people killed, at least six people injured by hit-and-run drivers, and more than one hundred separate traffic collisions. In the years that followed, politicians, police officials, and concerned citizens promoted annual December public safety campaigns in the hopes of making Toronto’s streets safer over the holidays.

Books dedicated to the history of the automobile in Canada often describe Canadians’ “love affair” with the automobile in the early 20th century. Toronto newspapers of the 1920s and 1930s, however, reveal that the new vehicles were not universally embraced. Articles express widespread public anxiety about the growing number of traffic collisions on city streets and highways; many Toronto newspapers featured regular photo arrays of smashed vehicles in and around the city.

Keep reading: Historicist: Pedestrian-blaming, 1930s style

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cityscape

Girl Power for Street Art

Encouraging female participation in a traditionally male-dominated medium.

girlpower

BY: Dudeman
LOCATION: Unknown
PHOTO BY: Georgette P.
FIELD NOTES: The world of art has a long and ongoing history of under-representing female-identified artists. In the cultural context of a 100 or more years ago, this trend is frustrating but understandable. Despite today’s world of supposed equal opportunity, the ratio has not dramatically improved. The world of graffiti is no exception. While there is lots of female talent locally and globally, and pseudonyms sometimes make it difficult to identify an artist’s gender, most notable graffiti artists are male.

On that note, you’ve probably noticed this artist goes by the name Dudeman. You are not wrong to assume this is a male artist. With a column about women in graffiti surely it makes more sense to feature a female artist. We would if we could! This isn’t like, say, naming a man as woman of the year when there’s no shortage of deserving women. This particular lack of diversity makes the task daunting. When men possess a disproportionate amount of visibility it is valuable for them to encourage women in their fields. Even a piece like this, simple with an intention we can only guess at, has value. Eventually we would love to feature equal numbers of male and female artists. So, if you’re a woman in graffiti send us images of your work! If you’re a woman who has thought about making graffiti, get out there and paint! If you’re a fan of graffiti, post links to your favourite female artists! And if you’re a male graffiti artist or promoter of graffiti, make space for female artists.

Once a week, Vandalist features some of the most interesting street art and graffiti from around Toronto. Find something great? Email vandalist@torontoist.com.