As a current city councillor, candidate Wong-Tam has been an advocate for increased shelters and has supported the successful transition of several properties to non-profits. She is aware of the situation with the rooming houses in our area and willing to work with the WPRA on this issue. She believes that a charter with the city to express what needs to be done and to hold them accountable might be a good next step. She is also an advocate for getting all of the agencies to talk to each other to solve problems. She provided examples of transitions she has worked with on Homewood Avenue and at Jarvis and Isabella which have resulted in a safe and accessible solution for non-profits and residents.
When told about the issue with Ontario Street and the need to have the area repaved, she expressed that, if elected, she would be willing to help the WPRA navigate the city process as this is an accessibility issue. If the sidewalk in its current state places people in danger, then funds need to be put into replacing it properly.
Candidate Wong-Tam was aware of the parkette on Bleecker Street and understood the reasons the WPRA is advocating to give it a name. She has had a great deal of experience with managing these types of concerns during her time as a city councillor and, given that it is a safety issue, she would help the WPRA to navigate the process for having it properly named. She believes that a big part of her role as councillor would be to help community representatives to navigate these issues, which is an important part of her current role and one in which she has had a very good success rate.
One of Candidate Wong-Tam’s major concerns is the ongoing opioid crisis and she believes some of our current community safety issues stem from that. She suggested ways to increase community safety patrols to include our neighbourhood and to support increased safety of the students at the Winchester Park School.
Safety and security is a very big concern and candidate Wong-Tam believes that we need to think about the overall health of the community instead of security. This way of looking at issues can find solutions that will prevent problems before they happen. She supports a plan to look at the root causes of gun violence. She has seen how lack or resources and reshuffling of problems – for example, the need to close the Regent Park Community Centre to house residents of 650 Parliament Street displaced by the fire, have ripple effects in the community. She is committed to finding better ways to address the systemic problems that lead to these issues.
Candidate Wong-Tam has been an active voice on city council and has proposed the Downtown East Action Plan, which she sees as something that can work in our ward.
Currently, Candidate Wong-Tam meets monthly with all the residents associations and BIAs in her ward. The current 110,000 person ward that she is running to be councillor for is actually smaller than her current ward and she has every intention of continuing her monthly meetings and including the WPRA in this plan, if elected.