Candidate Dewdney wants constituents to access him 24/7
Interaction with residents key to being a good Toronto-Danforth rep
By Kris Scheuer
(Written April 8 for Town Crier.)
Mark Dewdney promises to be accessible to constituents if voted in as the next Toronto-Danforth Ward 30 rep.
And starting now as a candidate he’s giving out his home number.
Dewdney’s philosophy about being available to help around the clock is personal to him and stems from the fact others were there for him in his own life.
Born and raised in Cambridge and Kitchener, he was adopted at birth, lived in various group homes and credits others for making a difference in his life. Now he wants to give back and get voters more involved so city hall works for them.
“Something for me to guard against is complacency,” said Dewdney, who’s lived in East York most of his life. “You better give out your home number and have dinner in the ward with your family.”
While the police are there to respond to emergencies and the city’s new 311 line is available 24/7 for people to report non-urgent issues, that doesn’t deter him from wanting to be available all the time.
“If there’s a fire at 4 a.m. I want them to be able to call me at home if they are (now) homeless so I can help,” he said. “I can’t turn off the care button.”
This is his first campaign but he doesn’t see that as a drawback as even seasoned councillors started out as rookies themselves, said Dewdney.
“I have a family. I know what it’s like to look at the bankbook and say can we afford this,” said Dewdney, who’s married with two young children.
He was trained as a police officer but decided it was not for him and now runs his own first aid business.
Everywhere he goes whether it is the Beach Easter parade or coffee shops, he stops people to ask them what issues concern them.
He mentions under-enrolled schools that could close and the new TTC barns storage yard at Leslie Street and Lake Shore Boulevard East as two big issues.
Dewdney has many plans laid out on his website www.markdewdney.com regarding how to stay on top of ward concerns including holding online referendums to take the pulse of voters on issues and walking the entire ward annually to stay on top of concerns.
He’s looking to pick a different Ward 30 breakfast joint every Sunday where constituents can come by and share ideas with him.