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Gun violence in southeast Ottawa

There has been a disturbing trend toward increased gunplay in my part of town. These are almost exclusively gang-related incidents where dealers are taking potshots at other dealers if they see the competition infringing on their territory.

Gang-related or not, there needs to be a stronger response from all community leaders, not only the Ottawa Police. And this needs to happen quickly, before a stray bullet hurts or kills a bystander like this 15 year old in Vancouver.

It’s really only a matter of time.

But like I noted, what should happen in addition to a stronger police response (whatever that exactly looks like) is a full community response to the crisis; and yes, this is a crisis. By “full community”, I mean the OPS, the City of Ottawa, the area Community Associations and the School Boards. Four distinct bodies that need to work toward common ends that will stop this trend in its tracks.

And yes, I include the School Boards as one of these four entities.

Speaking about the number 4, Ottawa has four, count ’em four, Boards within its borders. Yes. Four.

But I’ll leave that for another time…

Anyway, all of these Boards, but primarily the largest of them – the OCDSB and the OCSB – have a stake in the mitigation of this emerging crisis. They too have a responsibility to work with the CAs, the police and the City representatives and elected officials.

So, let’s get moving on this! And yes, I’m looking at you too, OCDSB and OCSB, because while we have been hearing about useful sessions with the communities hosted by the OPS and City Councilors, there has been nary a peep from our local Trustees.

At least nothing I’ve been told about…

 

 

 

 

 

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For those Canadians who think that the election of Trump is of no matter to us…

… wake up. I have literally no patience for those people anymore. Zero.

He has emboldened racists everywhere. Even in my own backyard.

A Synagogue not far from where I live and even closer to my kid’s school was defiled with anti-Jewish and racist slop the other night. This Synagogue is a special place for many people who I know and call friends or colleagues.

I have set up tables for school events alongside these people, served with them on Parent Council. I respect them and they are part of my community.

And their children are my children’s’ friends. They play sports together… go to each others’ birthday parties.

I am angry. Really, really pissed off. And I am more determined than ever to do whatever I can to stop the spread of this filth perpetrated by beings that are lower than pond scum. It is the least I can do for my friends, colleagues and their families.

And if you care at all about our inclusive, tolerant and open communities, you too will speak out against this.

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Leadership – it’s vital

After watching the municipal campaigns in Ottawa unfold thus far, it is becoming increasingly obvious that the defining issue is leadership.

Pro green bin or not (I pity the fools!), love Phase 2 of the LRT or scrap it, raise taxes, lower them or keep them the same, what really sets out one candidate from another are the leadership skills that each one brings to the table.

To give a glimpse of what we will see tonight in the already-recorded Alta Vista debate, the Citizen summed up the highlights. A piece of the text caught my eye:

That is not leadership,” he (Jean Cloutier) said. “I have been working in the community for 20 years.”

Bingo. Game, set and match. Candidates like Mr. Cloutier have taken the leadership reins in the community and have guided good policies, initiatives and programs. They have set an example in the community by leading and have inspired others (like yours truly) to do likewise.

Other candidates, as sincere as they are, as knowledgable as they may be, simply cannot wear the leadership mantle that candidates like Mr. Cloutier can lay claim to.

There are other candidates in other Wards – incumbents and newbies – who have demonstrated the same commitment to be leaders. Riley Brockington in River Ward, Martin Canning in Somerset, Fleury in Rideau-Vanier and Hobbs in Kitchissippi are all leaders in their own right.

For Alta Vista to continue to have strong leadership in the community and at the Council table, Mr. Cloutier can be the only choice.

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So I’m officially not running for anything…

… this time around.

I was, however, very tempted to run down to City Hall around noon to register as a school Board Trustee candidate in my zone; where there was no one contesting the lone candidate who filed his papers. But whammo! someone named Talis-Ilmars Brauns has filed and will provide some opposition to Mr. Ellis. Great to see!

Even though I am not running, I will live vicariously through and help out:

Jean Cloutier: who will be a fine representative for Alta Vista on Council. Jean and I have worked together at the Canterbury Community Association for about 4 years… top shelf fellow! Hard-working. And he knows our community inside and out.

Riley Brockington: who is a colleague and a former OCDSB Trustee who gave me lots of advice and motivation in 2010. He will serve well in River Ward.

Martin Canning: former Environmental Advisory Committee Chair. He is running a very enviro and community-focussed campaign in Somerset. He has a great team and he’s also a top shelf guy.

Plus, I wish my brother, Jim Marshall, all the best in his quest for a seat at the Council table in my old home town of Parry Sound. My bro is a man who exemplifies integrity and hard work. The folks in P Dot will be well-served.

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Whew, I’m glad our OCDSB Trustee is safe and sound…

… because the schools around Alta Vista and its neighbourhoods haven’t seen her since the 2010 election.

But here she is, shilling for the OCDSB Chair running for the NDP nomination in Ottawa Centre.

Whew. Folks have been worried.

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The Ottawa police have released a sketch…

… of the freak who has been sexually assaulting women in the Alta Vista area.

Please feel free to copy and paste into any media where we can get some broad coverage. SOMEONE has to know this freak! Call the cops if you do!

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Public service announcement

If you are a high school student in the Alta Vista or Canterbury areas in Ottawa, this might be of interest to you!

 

CANTERBURY COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION’S ANNUAL SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM

The annual scholarship program, started in 1996, was developed to recognize students of the community who have demonstrated an ongoing commitment to volunteering in our community.

Three scholarships valued at $1,500 each are awarded to area high school students entering college or university in the fall.

One Mark and Shanty Inman Community Service Scholarship, which is awarded in recognition of Mark and Shanty Inman’s dedication and commitment to the Association and to making life better in the Canterbury Community. In addition two Canterbury Community Association Volunteer Scholarships will be awarded.

The Scholarship Application Forms for the 2012-2013 scholarships are now available in English and French at the Association’s office in the Canterbury Community Centre, in the student services offices at area high schools, and on-line by clicking on the appropriate link below.

Completed applications must be postmarked no later than Friday, May 10, 2012.

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PINK SHIRT DAY-Anti Bullying Day

The Canterbury Community Association is pleased to announce….PINK SHIRT DAY-Anti Bullying Day – February 29th 2012.

DID YOU KNOW that the last Wednesday of February is known as Anti-Bullying Day in Canada and it is also known as “Pink Shirt Day”. This movement was started 5 years ago, in B.C, when 2 young boys and their friends took a stand against bullying by distributing pink shirts in support of a grade 9 student who was being bullied. Since then, the PINK SHIRT movement has grown throughout Canada, and we are standing united with the children of the Canterbury Community Association- After School Program to say BULLYING STOPS HERE!

The CCA After School Program serves over 100 children from area schools in the Alta Vista ward and has become a much sought after option for many area families seeking after school care for their kids. Pink Shirt day will serve to commemorate the children’s efforts towards maintaining a safe and friendly environment and further solidify their engagement in taking a stand against bullying.

We wanted to invite you to join the movement with your team by promoting PINK SHIRT DAY to your colleagues and friends and wearing PINK on February 29th to take a stand against bullying.

Our Pink Shirt Day Festivities include; a visit from special guest Graham Richardson from CTV News Ottawa who will speak to the children about bullying. We are still seeking sponsors from the community to help us with crafts, peanut-free snacks and drinks for the kids. We will also plan to have meaningful activities and resources for the kids and their parents. Participants will be invited to sign the “Bullying Stops Here” banner in the main hallway; as a symbol of our unity and dedication towards positive relationships and taking a stand against bullying.

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Bottle drive!

Wondering what to do with all of those bottles that were merrily emptied over the holidays? Think no more… at least if you’re in Ottawa.

The Pleasant Park Public School Council is working hard to raise money to build a new play structure. And you can help!

Let us carry away your empty bottles. The money we collect for the returns will go toward the playground fund. Here’s all you have to do:

1. Send an email to PPPSPlay@yahoo.ca to let us know you would like to donate your bottles. In the email, tell us the address where we can pick up the bottles.

2. On the morning of Monday, January 2nd, put the bottles out in your driveway or on your front porch. We will pick them up between 8 am and 2 pm.

Thanks mucho for your help…

 

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John Marshall for Trustee – the end of the beginning

Here we are, folks.

The day before the election.  Tomorrow, we will vote for our Trustees, Mayor and Councillors.

Yeah, I put Trustees first on that list…

I have received so much encouragement from so many people…. got a call the other night from someone who I repect and this gave me the “oomph” to stay the course for a few hours more.

Here are the brass tacks: I will do as I say. I will listen. And I will respond.

The past few months have been really enjoyable. So many great folks in this community. So many concerns.

So many great ideas.

And I even lost a few pounds on my journeys… fringe benefit to campaigning, eh?

I ask for the honour of your vote on Monday and I will put these great ideas into motion.

Thank-you…

And yes, I know I look goofy below… it gets better.


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