What’s this all about (Page 5)
Letter from The 519 Board (Page 6-7)
Candidate Submissions (Page 8-21)
We Vote (Page 22-23)
Get Involved—Pledge to Vote (Page 28-29)
Accessibility– Make Voting Work For You (Page 32)
Trans Accessibility (Page 33)
Who Can Vote (Page 36)
Choosing a Candidate (Page 43)
Can I See Your ID Please? (Page 44-45)
Credits (Page 47)
In 2014, The 519 made a commitment to engage Toronto’s LGBT communities in Toronto’s electoral process. We are working to ensure our communities participate in the October election and to raise awareness of LGBT issues throughout the electoral process using traditional as well as new and creative methods. With that commitment in mind we decided to publish an accessible and creative zine that will bring the policy, personality, and message of Mayoral candidates to members of our communities in a fun and interesting way. We invited mayoral candidates to contribute to the zine by addressing the question below in one of two ways:
Provide a written response to the question below using fewer than 250 words, OR
Submit a creative response (drawing, painting, collage, etc.) to the question below using a 5.5”x8.5” piece of paper Question: “What is the most pressing issue for Toronto’s LGBT community today, and how would you address this issue as Mayor?” Submissions from candidates were compiled alongside submissions from LGBT community members, artists, and The 519 program participants that relate to municipal and electoral issues. Information about voting and the election process has also been included. Enjoy.
The 519 is an Agency of the City of Toronto with a mandate for civic engagement and community development within the downtown and lesbian, gay, bi and trans communities of Toronto. In 2014, The 519 made a commitment to engage Toronto’s LGBT community in Toronto’s electoral process. We are working to ensure our communities participate in the October election and to raise awareness of LGBT issues throughout the electoral process through both traditional as well as new and creative methods. At an all-candidates’ debate in February 2014, Mayor Ford made two remarks related to Toronto’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer (LGBTQ) communities. In his first statement, the Mayor provided clarity regarding his unwillingness to attend Toronto’s World Pride Festival, noting that it was a matter of personal preference; previously, he had indicated his unwillingness to attend Pride events was related to a scheduling conflict. In his second remark, the Mayor questioned the need for services that meet the unique needs of LGBTQ communities. And, in a subsequent comment, the Mayor has indicated he would seek to remove the Pride flag that was raised in front of City Hall to mark Toronto’s solidarity with LGBTQ citizens of Russia. The 519’s Board of Management is mandated by City Council through our relationship framework to facilitate civic engagement, and we are taking this commitment to a new level. We believe that this issue has grown beyond any one off-handed naïve or willful homophobic or transphobic remark. The comments came at a time when Toronto was preparing to welcome the world for World Pride 2014; when the Olympics were hosted in a country that has banned “homosexual propaganda”; and when the voters will decide who will lead City Council for the next four years. 6
The 519 strongly believes that homophobia and transphobia, whether direct or inferred, have no place in political discourse and should never be used as a tactic to secure electoral votes. The City of Toronto has been recognized as an international leader in citybuilding because we have broadly embraced diversity, equity and human rights, and at the same time ensured that community services are provided across this city to meet the needs of all Torontonians. Our members, and indeed LGBTQ people, live and work in every corner of this city. We vote, pay taxes, use services and volunteer in every ward. In 2014, we intend to do what we can to ensure that issues of concern for queer and trans people are raised with every candidate standing for election to Toronto City Council. We can’t prevent homophobia and transphobia from being a factor in this election but we can ensure that it doesn’t go unchecked, and that it is matched by a strong, committed, engaged community that is unified in our efforts to protect our place at the civic table. The planning begins today – we hope you’ll join us in this important effort.
Tyler Fleming Chair, Board of Management
Margo Foster Vice-Chair, Board of Management
What is the most pressing issue for Torontoâ€™s LGBT community today, and how would you address this issue as Mayor?
t s e Qu n o i 8
Youth. Although my LGBTQ friends tell me the community has made strides in terms of achieving acceptance and acknowledgment for adults, there are serious needs for youth that go unaddressed. Primary among these is the issue of homeless youth. Despite the great work being done by Dr. Alex Abramovich and Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam, many LGBTQ youth cannot find safety, security, and shelter in Toronto. It is thought that between 20% and 40% of homeless youth in Toronto are LGTBQ, yet unreported violence and inadequately trained counsellors make the problem of their homelessness worse. Additionally I believe there is a need for better counseling in schools and social centres for young people who are coming to terms with their orientation, especially including those who are being bullied and/or cyberbullied. I am not able to support a city that demonstrates intolerance open hatred to any member of the LGBTQ community. It is sad and shameful that the current mayor and his brother have made their distaste for the community plainly and repeatedly obvious. Whether they are aware of how their actions may have influenced others, I do not know, but I do know that racism and discrimination is taught, and my belief is that the Ford brothersâ€™ actions may have caused damage well beyond their own small family sphere. My role would be to actively support programs that support and work with LGBTQ youth, including ensuring that the city finds the funds to build an LGBTQ shelter.
Candidate Name: Ari Goldkind 9
On the pond we like to say a duck is a duck is a duck. If you are a Goldeneye, a Dabbling Duck, A Stiff Tail or a Mallard you are a duck who deserves the same love, respect and healthy life as any other Duck. As mayor I will recognize the challenges of homelessness, violence, health , acceptance, and equality for LGTB humans and so I will bring resources to the support services, education and visibility to the bird brained public and love to the city of Toronto for all homosapians. ~ Chandler Mallard @Duck for mayor
Candidate Name: Chandler Mallard 10
Being a satire mayoral candidate offers an opportunity to address some serious issues in humorous ways. One issue is inclusive all off member of the society and equal opportunities to all, regardless of one’s sexual orientation. Being a mayor, it is the duty of that offices to take care of all citizens of Toronto and make everyone feel welcome, since Ford’s reign as mayor, he has neglected the LBGT community by not showing support for Toronto Pride event and various shameful remarks. As the mayor, I’ll pass a by law that require all elected officials to participate in the Toronto Pride Parade, a mandatory event. In fact I will personally take attendance for all city and for councilors who failed to show up to hear rainbow underwear for the rest of their terms in office. To help those are gays, bisexuals, lesbians move forward, I proposed to have a gay only dedicated high-speed lane like the one for car-pooling on DVP, 401 and on some street. To promote openness and tolerance, I’ll sign a by laws that allows gays couples to conduct sexual activities openly, such as in the parks and inside taxis. Additionally, to promote diverse talents, I’ll issue permits that allows gay singers to perform 24 hours day in front of residences of any Conservative member of federal and provincial Member of Parliament.
Candidate Name: Charles Huang 11
Candidate Name: D!ONNE RenĂŠe 12
The most pressing issue is providing better education, training and jobs to the LGBT community. With over 20% youth unemployment it is imperative that we provide the resources, training and mentoring to help LGBT youth learn and train to get the jobs of tomorrow. Some of these jobs are using the internet, ESL pronunciations, surveys responses, etc. to generate incomes. As Mayor I would work to coordinate these key points into a viable process to help the LGBT community get better employment. Furthermore, it is important to provide mentoring and a support structure to engage and encourage youth to do better in their efforts by looking to the seniors of the communities to help those in greater need to stay on track to help themselves. It is also important to have a sense of belonging and a place to belong. This would entail bringing the communities together to build and foster a facility that would enshrine the best that can be offered to others. I would encourage a Toronto fundraising effort by the community to build what they want and feel would be the monument they need to help others and themselves. As mayor I would help to facilitate this effort. It is my perception and empirical understanding that the LGBT community today is being accepted more and more into main stream society. Yes, there are still a lot of acceptance issues for all people in certain areas but as we work hard to overcome bigotry, ignorance and rigidity to other peopleâ€™s ideas and cultures we slowly become an integrated city that can learn the best from each other. Erwin SniedZins Toronto Mayor Candidate www.Z4mayor.ca PS: Donâ€™t worry about spelling or pronouncing my name. Just call me Z - itâ€™s easy.
Candidate Name: Erwin SniedZins 13
Candidate Name: H誰MY SYeD 14
Candidate Name: John Tory 15
Candidate Name: Klim Khomenko 16
Candidate Name: Matthew Crack 17
Candidate Name: Michael Nicula 18
A volunteer took this picture during this years Pride parade. I think it captures the community and the diversity in our city wonderfully. Most of all, it is unabashedly proud. I believe that there are many issues that face the LGBTQ community. But what has always inspired me and what I continue to learn the most from LGBTQ people is to be absolutely, unreservedly, completely proud. I fought for AIDS prevention community investment funding at city hall, I fought in the House of Commons when the Conservatives removed all references to LGBTQ people and rights in the citizenship guide. I am proud to march with you, I am proud to fight with you, I am proud to honour you, and I would be proud to be your mayor.
Candidate Name: Olivia Chow 19
In my opinion, the most pressing issue for LGBT community today would still be related to education. If there is so much hate and misunderstanding toward the gay community, it's probably because it started at home. Parents should educate their children that LGBT community is part of the society. Maybe schools should make their part as well, including an educational program for children as young as 7-8 years old, so they will grow up realizing it's totally normal to see two persons of the same sex holding hands or kissing in public. Eventually, with that kind of education retransmitted later to their own children, there would be no more violence or hate against the gay community. There were no need to constantly fight for our rights every day, and probably no more Pride since no more difference in the society and everybody being treated equally.
Candidate Name: Pat Roberge 20
In February, the Ontario Legislature gave unanimous consent to fly the Pride flag at Queen’s Park for the duration of the Sochi Olympics. Public buildings across Canada had been raising the rainbow flag as a sign of solidarity against a recent Russian law banning the ―propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations to minors.‖ Despite LGBT rights often being seen as a divisive right-left issue in Canada, even Progressive Conservative leader Tim Hudak said: ―I think it’s the right cause in light of what’s happening in Sochi.― With the Province so obviously agreeing on the importance of taking a stand in support of LGBT rights in light of Sochi, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford’s opposition to raising the Pride flag at City Hall, just days after saying he will never attend Pride (at a debate in which I was declared winner of Mr. Ford and David Soknacki), was seemingly a direct attack on Toronto’s LGBT community — the largest and strongest in the country. Ford, who hung a Canadian flag in his office window in protest, because ―(The Olympics are) about being patriotic to your country, this is not about someone’s sexual preference,‖ was criticized for using the national flag as an anti-LGBT symbol. Ford’s motion to have the rainbow flag taken down was overruled. Councillor Doug Ford, whose opposition to Pride stems from not wanting to see ―buck naked men,‖ came to his brother’s defence on Tuesday, claiming that the gay community is―bullying‖ the Mayor (and of course pulling the classic ―I’m not homophobic‖ tactic of referring to his many ―gay friends‖ — of course without offering any further details). I’m of the belief that people who defend themselves or offer differing views aren’t being bullies — they’re being democratic. I posted this Tweet in response to Rob Ford’s protest against the Pride flag at City Hall: 416-397-3673. If Rob Ford says he returns every phone call he gets, call and ask him about wanting to take the rainbow flag down. Thanks to so many concerned citizens for sharing, re-tweeting, and calling the Mayor’s office. It was my understanding he generally has a two-week turnaround, yet not one single respondent received a reply. As Mayor of Toronto, I would support the development and maintenance of unique neighbourhoods. Community events as simple as Movies in the Park at Riverdale, and a greater emphasis on cultural necessities such as Gay Pride will be further embraced to show the world that, in spite of the blemish Rob Ford has put on Toronto’s reputation, it is indeed the greatest city on earth. Inclusion of the LGBTTIQQ2SA community is paramount to fostering a world-class and accessible city. My transit plan is not simply about reducing congestion and increasing efficiency in commuting to and from work; it is also about access to services. A queer youth in Scarborough who has more accessible transit to get to facilities such as The 519 is at less risk of alienation, and in the most tragic cases, self-harm, violence, and suicide. Toronto is six municipalities amalgamated into one, across an enormous range of socio-economic diversity. A more inter-connected city with a more accessible transit system is a step to removing cultural barriers and xenophobia. We can do better, Toronto!
Candidate Name: Robb Johannes 21
We e t o V
The 519 is an Agency of the City of Toronto with a mandate for civic engagement and community development within the downtown and lesbian, gay, bi and trans communities of Toronto. In 2014, The 519 made a commitment to engage Torontoâ€™s LGBT communities in Torontoâ€™s electoral process. We are working to ensure our communities participate in the October election and to raise awareness of LGBT issues throughout the electoral process. The 519 is committed to ensuring that voters understand the role Toronto City Council plays in creating healthy, welcoming communities for LGBTQ people and that LGBTQ people and their allies get out and vote for candidates that will advance LGBTQ community priorities during the next term of Council.
CHECK OUT WEVOTE.THE519.ORG AND PLEDGE TO VOTE! By pledging to vote, you'll add your name to the list of LGBTQ voters and their allies who have committed to considering the challenges and opportunities of the LGBTQ community in Toronto when you cast your ballot on October 27th. In signing the pledge to vote in the 2014 Municipal Election on October 27th, 2014 or at an advance poll, you also pledge: To educate yourself on the many ways Toronto City Council and School Board policies and decisions impact on LGBTQ people. To learn more about the candidates and their positions on LGBTQ issues in Toronto. And to raise these issues in discussions about the election with friends, family, on social media and at debates and other events. 23
Sissy by Jocelyn Reynolds 25
Take pride in your commitment to civic engagement by pledging to vote on October 27 at The 519’s WE VOTE. The 519 is committed to ensuring that voters understand the role Toronto City Council plays in creating healthy, welcoming communities for LGBTQ people and that LGBTQ people and their allies get out and vote for candidates that will advance LGBTQ community priorities during the next term of Council. By pledging to vote, you'll add your name to the list of LGBTQ voters and their allies who have committed to considering the challenges and opportunities of the LGBTQ community in Toronto when you cast your ballot. We will not publicize your pledge, nor will we share your information. We will use your information to share news and updates on LGBTQ issues during the election and to send you a reminder to vote on Election Day. I pledge to vote in the 2014 Municipal Election on October 27th, 2014 or at an advance poll. In casting my vote, I pledge:
Check out the list of all Candidates running for Mayor and find out who is running in your ward. To see a list of all Election events in your area – visit http://app.toronto.ca/vote/myVote.do. Simply enter your postal code and choose the events you want to attend.
Use your personal social media pages to your advantage! Gather information, receive updates and see what others are saying about the issues that matter most to you.
Get out there! Attend events and debates including the proudTOvote debate. proudTOvote is pleased to present a debate with the leading mayoral candidates on subjects of interest to the LGBTQ community. This is one of our few opportunities to ask the next mayor of Toronto the questions most important to our community.
Accessibility– Make Voting Work For You! All voting places will be accessible.
Accessible Voting Equipment A Voter Assist Terminal (VAT) will be available at each Advance Vote location and at one location in each ward on Election Day. The Voter Assist Terminal allows people with various disabilities to vote independently using various assistive devices including a touch screen, Braille key pad, rocker paddle and sip/puff devices, audio headset and a zoom feature to adjust font sizes and colour contract.
Instructions on how to vote will be available at all voting places in Braille, large print and 25 languages.
Magnification sheets will be available at all voting locations to assist voters with low vision.
Where an elector with a disability is unable to enter the voting place, they can request to be assisted at another area within the voting place, for example a parking lot, or curb. On Election Day, if you wish to vote at the location in your ward with the VAT, call Election Services at 416-338-111 (press 6) by October 20 to make the necessary arrangements.
Election information for the deaf or hard of hearing is available by calling the TTY line at 416-338-OTTY(0889)
You may bring a friend along to help you if you are unable to mark your ballot on your own; or you can ask an election official for assistance.
All voting places welcome the use of support persons and service animals.
Trans Accessibility during the 2014 Toronto Municipal Elections While voting should be accessible to all eligible voters, we know that’s not always the case. So we called around to find out if Trans people might run up against any difficulties during the election and we found out some things. If you have any concern that bringing photo ID might complicate your life at the voting place (and you want to avoid that), bring one of the many acceptable types of ID that don’t have a photo (there is a list included on page 44 & 45). If you are on the voters list and have received your Voter Information Card (VIC);
Bring your voter information card (VIC), and
Bring ID, with name and Toronto address that matches voters’ list
If you are in the process of having your name changed and you are on the voters’ list under your former name - bring your VIC and when they ask if the information is correct say yes and bring ID that has your current legal (former) name and Toronto address
If your name has recently been changed and is different from what appears on VIC complete a Voters’ List Amendment Application form (found with the Elections information on the City of Toronto website) and mail that in before October 15th or bring it in person to your voting place on elections day.
If you’re not on the voters’ list - you can add your name to the list on the day
Bring (non-photo) ID with name and Toronto address
Because of these calls Ballot Officers will receive training that it is not their job to question ID, if you bring an acceptable form of ID (see list) they do not have the authority to turn you away, regardless of their perception of your gender. If you are having difficulty voting on the day, experience transphobia, or otherwise run into complications voting because of your gender identity or expression, or because of name changes please call Elections Services at 416-338-1111 and press 6. 34
Who CAN vote You can vote in Toronto’s municipal election if you are:
A Canadian citizen; and At least 18 years old; and A resident in the City of Toronto; or A non-resident of the City of Toronto, but you or your spouse own or rent property in the City; and not prohibited from voting under any law.
Who CANNOT vote You cannot vote in Toronto’s municipal election if you are:
A person serving a sentence of imprisonment in a penal or correctional institution A corporation A person acting as executor or trustee or in another representative capacity, except as a voting proxy A person convicted of a corrupt practice described in section 90(3) of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996
Patch By Althea Balmes 41
Can I see your ID please? When you arrive at the voting place, you must show identification to prove that you are the person whose name appears on the voters’ list. The identification must show your name and address. Photo identification is not required. There are many documents that can be used to show your name and address. Please see the list below for some acceptable documents for voter identification.
Please note: a Canadian passport is not an acceptable document, because you write your address inside your passport yourself.
Acceptable Documents for Voter Identification:
An Ontario driver’s licence
An Ontario Health Card (photo card)
An Ontario Photo Card
An Ontario motor vehicle permit (vehicle portion)
A cancelled personalized cheque
A mortgage statement, lease or rental agreement relating to property in Ontario
A loan agreement or other financial agreement with a financial institution
Any document from a Band Council in Ontario established under the Indian Act (Canada)
An income tax assessment notice
Any document from a Band Council in Ontario established under the Indian Act (Canada)
A Child Tax Benefit Statement
A Statement of Old Age Security T4A (OAS) 44
A Statement of Direct Deposit for Ontario Disability Support Program
A Workplace Safety and Insurance Board Statement of Benefits T5007
A property tax assessment
A credit card statement, bank account statement, or RRSP, RRIF, RHOSP or T5 statement
A hospital card or record
A document showing campus residence, issued by the office or officials responsible for student residence at a post-secondary institution
A document showing residence at a long-term care home under the Long-Term Care Homes Act, 2007, issued by the Administrator for the home
A utility bill for hydro, water, gas, telephone or cable TV or a bill from a public utilities commission
A cheque stub, T4 statement or pay receipt issued by an employer
A transcript or report card from a post-secondary school
Pg 22 - Nora Graham Pg 24-25 - Jocelyn Reynolds Pg 26 - Sunday Drop-In participant Pg. 27 - Sarah Buckingham Pg. 30 - Amber Moyle Pg. 31 - Jola Pg. 33 - Group work from Newcomer and Settlement Services participants Pg. 35 - Dale Pg. 37 - Elizabeth Littlejohn Pg. 38 - 50+ Program Participant Pg. 39 - Group work from Newcomer and Settlement Services participants Pg. 41 - Patch - Althea Balmes Acknowledgements - Althea Balmes 47
A civic engagement project of The 519