Posts tagged ‘Toronto’

Immediate action on Aboriginal homelessness needed. (Please share)

coldhomelessIt’s tough to be homeless.  At this time of year it’s especially tough.

We can only imagine what it’s like to be homeless and walking the city streets.  The temperatures are dropping, soon to be perpetually below freezing.  To always be on the lookout for a hot meal and a warm bed – not to mention a few dollars for the personal essentials that we all take for granted.  To have to go without during the not-so-festive holiday season.

So far, it’s been a really tough year for those community agencies that serve the homeless.  Charitable donations, personal and corporate, are down substantially for the Native Men’s Residence (Na-Me-Res), one of Toronto’s most respected and longest serving homeless service provider.

“Charitable donations are down substantially.”

The sad fact is that fewer individual donors are coming forward.  Donations from corporations and charitable foundations are at an all-time low.  This will seriously impact the many indigenous men who depend on Na-Me-Res for support and help get them back on their feet.

The core programs of Na-Me-Res are well taken care of, including the operation of 63-bed shelter, transitional housing, outreach, culture and community support programs.  Na-Me-Res is very well managed.  However, core program funding does not include support for various unfunded outreach services, community gatherings, First Nations ceremonies and, of course, personal supports to the homeless men themselves.

Na-Me-Res has embarked on their annual Christmas Drive.  The aim is to assemble personal care packages for homeless clients and others still on the street.  These care packages might include backpacks, socks, underwear, mitts, scarves, hygienic products such as shampoo, conditioner and chap stick.  Ideally, Na-Me-Res would like to host a special Christmas turkey dinner at the shelter and transitional housing facility.

 

I need your help, my friends.  All I am asking for is two things:nameres_logo

 

You can donate to the Na-Me-Res Christmas Drive through:

  • Online donations accepted at CanadaHelps.org;

  • Make a direct contribution to Na-Me-Res Christmas Drive.  Contact Blanche White at (416) 652-0334 or bwhite@nameres.org.

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lORESDq2zi8[/youtube]

All donations are tax deductible.  Please consider either a recurring donation through CanadaHelps.org or through the United Way Toronto.

Chi-miigwetch Niwiijiwaaganag.  (A big thank you, my friends)

 

An Adam Giambrone Production

I rarely cite another blogger or columnist, much less in my lede.  But Royson James of the Toronto Star said it well this morning stating: “Simply, Giambrone is a fraud.”

But what if Adam Giambrone is even a bigger fraud than we know?

Here is my pelican brief.

My hypothesis is based on the well-known idiom that any publicity is good publicity.  Adam Giambrone is seen as the hip, youngster in the race to be the next mayor of Toronto.  He held his schnazzy, well choreographed campaign launch in a nightclub. He is flamboyant and witty – complete with great one-liners and a Stockwell-Day-esque video on YouTube, sans wetsuit.  He’s got momentum.

But the reality is that he’s a city councillor.  Not well known to the wider public.  He’s not a Mel Lastman, Barbara Hall or John Tory.

Giambrone is best known to his ward voters – who are especially vocal of their dislike of the man.  He is now infamous as the Chair of the Toronto Transit Commission – who is seeing anger from riders and the public over poor service and an unpopular fare hike last month.

But as I stated:  any publicity is good publicity.  According to the polls, Giambrone is a solid lock on second place, still far behind the front-runner, the powerhouse, former Deputy Premier George Smitherman.

What’s a man to do?

Necessity is the mother of invention.  Giambrone needs to expand his reach.  He needs to be known by more and more people in Toronto.  He needs to dominate the headlines.  Could the Adam Giambrone sex scandal be totally fabricated?

It’s a sad commentary that those caught in sex scandals generally survive.  Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives.  He suffered the most intense grilling from independent counsel.  He was roasted in the media – day in and day out – dirty fact, after dirty fact.  Despite a short dip in the polling numbers, he was still among the most popular presidents to ever take office.

It’s also a sad fact that the best politicians in the western world are measured by their ability to address scandal.  Spin, deflect and press on.  Full steam ahead.

You have the need.  You have the rationale.  Next you need the players.

Enter Sarah McQuarrie in her role as long-time, live-in partner.  Also enter Kristen Lucas, the 20 year-old university student.  Both women are young, niave as well as beautiful.  They become involved with the young and handsome Giambrone.  It’s a picture-perfect television Love triangle.  The plot will involve steamy sex at his city hall office and a trail of lies and deceptions.  As the story evolves, it will no doubt include more details.  More than likely, more women will come forward.  There may be intrigue at the highest levels of city politics.  Perhaps in Giambrone’s mind, these plots and sub-plots will all culminate into an election victory.

It may not be a film screenplay or prime-time material, but it would make for a good afternoon soap opera plot.

If this hypothesis was true, I’m guessing that McQuarrie and Lucas may not even be aware of their roles.  The campaign team may not even be in on the plot.  This could very well be An Adam Giambrone Production.  Perhaps in Giambrone’s mind, these plots and sub-plots will lead to reality show stardom.  The Surreal Life meets Spin City.

Now this is pure speculation, but as the city turns, it is sure to benefit Giambrone.  Provided that the plot doesn’t go overboard and offend the rest of humanity.

Women, rightfully so, are not amused.  Whether or not this is a true fabricated production, the women involved in the scandal are being played.  Played by Giambrone and lied to with great fiction.  The media are being given a different script to review everyday in the form of official statements. 

He’s a great actor.  He’s shown he has very poor judgement.  He’s a seasoned manipulator and is navigating through his scandal.  But is that what Toronto really needs?

Giambrone has called a news conference for 11 a.m. this morning.  There are two scenarios:  he’ll either give up the race, or continue the production and new sub-plot and confess he’s gay.  As Royson James said, he can be gay if he wants to.  This is Toronto.

As The City Turns.