Oshawa City Council - Special Meeting


Council Chamber
  • Mayor Carter
  • Councillor Chapman
  • Councillor Giberson
  • Councillor Gray
  • Councillor Lee
  • Councillor Marimpietri
  • Councillor McConkey
  • Councillor Neal
  • Councillor Nicholson
  • Councillor Kerr
  • Councillor Marks

Mayor Carter called the meeting to order and stated that all members of Council were participating from the Chamber except Councillors Neal and Nicholson who were participating electronically and Councillors Kerr and Marks who were absent.

The purpose of this meeting was to allow the public an opportunity to provide their views and/or concerns to City Council regarding accessibility, diversity, equity and inclusion.

The City of Oshawa sits on treaty land that is steeped in rich Indigenous history and is the present day home to many First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples. We acknowledge that we live and work on land covered under the Williams Treaties, and the traditional territories of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the many Indigenous nations who have cared for the lands and waters from the beginning of time and still do so today. We extend our gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity to live and work on this territory.

We are committed to understanding the truth of our shared history, confronting our past and present, and building a better future together in true reconciliation.

Mayor Carter presented a certificate of recognition to the Mixed Ability Oshawa Vikings Rugby Team for placing second in the 2022 World Cup tournament. 

Amanda O'Rourke, Executive Director, 8 80 Cities provided a presentation concerning Building the 8 80 City: International good practices in creating accessible and inclusive public spaces for people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds.

Members of Council questioned Amanda O'Rourke.

Councillor Gray entered the meeting during questions to Amanda O'Rourke.

Stephen Moenster, Chair, Oshawa Accessibility Advisory Committee provided an update regarding Oshawa's Accessibility Plan.

Daniel Crosmas, Chair, and Christine Goodwin, Vice Chair, Community Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee provided an update regarding the activities of the Committee. 

Members of Council questioned Daniel Crosmas and Christine Goodwin.

  • Moved byCouncillor Chapman
    Seconded byCouncillor Giberson

    That any member of the public wishing to address City Council concerning diversity, inclusion or accessibility issues be heard.

    Motion Carried

Kathryn Bremner addressed City Council concerning accessibility issues, stating the City must demonstrate they are serious about accessibility and that it is important for businesses to understand that accessibility affects a person's ability to patron their business, especially in the downtown core.

Members of Council questioned Kathryn Bremner.

Dorothy McFarlane addressed City Council concerning accessibility issues, stating that she has been part of the O.A.A.C. for approximately 12 years and it has been an eye-opening experience.  Dorothy McFarlane stated that the city has come a long way with respect to accessibility, but has a long way to go in particular related to attitudinal barriers and the upkeep of the City's trails and access points.  

Pam Reines addressed City Council concerning diversity, equity and inclusion, stating that the 8 80 Cities concept is a great idea, but expressed concern with unsheltered people being constantly relocated.  Pam Reines stated there needs to be additional support for persons with addiction or mental health issues  and asked what members of Council have done to educate themselves on a number of issues including diversity, inclusion, homophobia, or misogyny beyond flag raising and proclamations.

Gino Vendetti addressed City Council concerning accessibility issues stating that the City is doing a lot for people with disabilities, however expressed concern with accessibility in the downtown area.  Gino Vendetti stated that is the obligation of the City to improve accessibility and suggested using Vancouver as an example.

Julia McCrea addressed City Council concerning the rapid growth in the City and stated that the growth is not being matched by growth in accessible transit services or school board services. Julia McCrea also stated that a number of areas do not have sidewalks, and raised concerns with access to charging stations for mobility devices.  

Steven Moenster addressed City Council concerning accessibility issues stating that higher levels of government should be encouraged to provide financial assistance to small businesses to improve accessibility.

Scott Bremner addressed City Council concerning accessibility issues stating that he has spent most of his life in Durham Region and has seen progress and improvements with respect to accessibility. Scott Bremner stated that he cannot speak for everyone's experience, but stated that change is still necessary, either over time or all at once to make things more accessible.  Scott Bremner stated that people with disabilities are not asking for a lot, they are asking for just a little bit more to continue improvement.

  • Moved byCouncillor Marimpietri
    Seconded byCouncillor Giberson

    That the meeting recess for 10 minutes.

    Motion Carried

    The meeting recessed at 8:00 p.m. and reconvened at 8:10 p.m. with all members of Council in attendance except Councillors Kerr, Marks and McConkey (entered the meeting at 8:14 p.m.)

Davaun Francis addressed City Council concerning diversity and inclusion issues stating that Council must connect and encourage the youth in the community to engage them.

Councillor McConkey entered the meeting during the delegation.

Bonnie Parks addressed City Council concerning accessibility issues related to regulations concerning snow removal on sidewalks and at bus stops, noting that this issue occurs in front of both businesses and residences. 

Christine Goodwin addressed City Council concerning diversity and inclusion issues stating that Council misses out on voices of those who are unable to address Council themselves due to social anxiety or hospitalization.  Christine Goodwin stated that access to services can be prevented by phone systems that don't recognize different voices, and stated there should be accessible and inclusive engagement in community centres and libraries.  Christine Goodwin stated that a variety of inclusive engagement opportunities at varying levels of ability is necessary.

Members of Council questioned Christine Goodwin.

  • Moved byCouncillor Chapman
    Seconded byCouncillor Giberson

    That the Confirming By-law be passed.

    Motion Carried
  • Moved byCouncillor Lee
    Seconded byCouncillor Chapman

    That the meeting adjourn at 8:21 p.m.

    Motion Carried
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