Tag Archives: Toronto Strike Impact

More strike winners and losers

(Originally written Aug. 7 for Town Crier.)

Did Mayor David Miller, businesses and society as a whole win or lose in the city strike?
I am looking at it from all three sides. I have also examined the labour dispute and its aftermath from perspective of the city, unions and residents. For that part of the story, click here.

Businesses
It’s all losses as far as I can tell. 
Many small businesses that get city trash pick-up could take garbage to temporary dumps, but let’s face it some of them had to pony up cash for a private hauler.
Some businesses also had to cancel or relocate scheduled events because the city was not issuing permits or cleaning up garbage. In some cases, non-union staff and management helped with clean up of major street festivals such as the Pride parade.

Mayor David Miller
Miller has been badly beaten up by the media, councillors in opposition to him, unions and residents. He probably lost more than most when it comes to public perception. Continue reading

City starts cleaning up garbage tonight

Alberta-St.Clair 3.jpg
Street trash on St. Clair West. Photo Kris Scheuer/Town Crier.

City starts picking up litter and street trash at midnight
Regular garbage collection resumes next week
By Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier July 30.)
Toronto should look a little cleaner and smell better starting tomorrow.
That’s because litter and garbage will start to be cleaned up off the streets as early as midnight tonight Geoff Rathbone, general manager of Solid Waste Management told a press conference this afternoon.
“As you can imagine cleaning up the city will be a large and complex operation,” he said around 3 p.m. “We will commence work early tomorrow morning by beginning the process of emptying and returning to service the city’s 5,000 litter bins.”
If city council approves the contracts for CUPE local 416 tomorrow, the 26 temporary dumps will be emptied of about 25,000 tonnes of garbage starting on Aug. 2.
“Our goals are the removal of the waste from all sites by Sunday evening to allow for the sites to return to normal operations,” Rathbone said. Continue reading

Post-strike service resumption

Mayor to announce when all city services back on track
Press conference this afternoon expected to be quite detailed
By Kris Scheuer
(Written for Town Crier July 30. Check here for update, I wrote today.)

Mayor David Miller and city manager Joe Pennachetti will announce details today at 3 p.m. on when camps, community centres, daycare, island ferry service, and garbage and litter collection will resume.
Both of the city’s striking unions — CUPE locals 79 and 416 — have said they are willing to return to work as of tomorrow.
I will be at that press conference, so check back this afternoon for all the dirty details.

Christie Pits dump now closed

Residents bring trash to add to pile at Christie Pits.

Residents bring trash to add to pile at Christie Pits.

View from Christie Pits dump July 5/09.

View from Christie Pits dump July 5/09.

By Kris Scheuer
When I visited Christie Pits temporary garbage dump today, the first thing I noticed was the sour stench.
It comes at you in waves, but got especially potent just yards away from the outdoor rink that holds thousands upon thousands of bags of waste dumped here legally since June 25.
The city announced this site will be officially closed at 7 p.m. as it’s at capacity. Around 4:30 p.m. there was still a steady flow of residents pulling up on Crawford Ave, the west border of this park, to dump more trash before the gates are closed.
All photos by Kris Scheuer.


Ted Reeve Arena strike impact?

Is it open or not?

By Kris Scheuer
I got an e-mail July 5 from a guy in New York who is planning to be in Toronto later this month for an event at Ted Reeve Arena.
He wants to know if the arena itself is open due to the city strike. As it’s a Sunday night, I did my best to search out an answer for him.
It is one of the temporary dump sites, but I don’t believe that affects this indoor arena as it is my understanding all the dump sites are outdoors.
The city’s website indicates this arena is run by an independent board appointed by the city. I put in a call at 416-694-6893 to the arena at 175 Main St. at Gerrard. I got the voicemail, but there was not mention of the strike.
I will of course call Monday morning to speak directly to staff at the arena or ask a city spokesperson.
Let me know if you know the status of Ted Reeve Arena. Is it open during the strike? You can leave me a comment or click on contact me and send me an e-mail. Thanks.

Sunnyside swimmable despite strike

Latest city water testing shows its safe for swim

By Kris Scheuer

The city was not doing daily water testing at the 11 designated swim spots during the strike. It has now resumed testing for E.coli levels, but twice a week only, at five beaches and Sunnyside is one of them. The city started a $1 million pilot project to install a “curtain” to make a section of this popular west end beach more swimmable. Pollution from the Humber River has made this beach one of the most polluted.
On July 4, the city’s most up-to-date posting of June 29 states it is safe for swimming. Check for updates on the city site.
Back on June 18, before the city strike began, I did a story for the Town Crier on local councillor Bill Saundercook jumping in the lake at Sunnyside with his wedding suit on. See the story here.

Strike cancels council meeting

Toronto labour unrest postpones city policy decisions

By Kris Scheuer
Garbage isn’t the only thing piling up during the strike.
Most official city business has come to a halt, including council’s regularly scheduled July 6–7 meeting which was cancelled July 2.
“The typical council meeting often considers over 100 items over a period of day,” stated a press release. “A regular council meeting is normally supported by unionized staff, who provide services to operate the facility.”
Also, non-unionized staff such as senior managers are required to be present to answer questions posed at council, but they are being redeployed to maintain critical services the statement concluded. Continue reading

Two new Toronto garbage dumps

Sunnybrook Park/Wilket Creek and Centennial Park Arena now open
Christie Pits and York Mills Arena trash sites close

By Kris Scheuer
(July 15 update, 26 trash sites with seven now closed)

The city will close two temporary neighbourhood dumps sites that are filled to the brim and open a pair of fresh ones.
By 7 p.m. today, the trash site at York Mills Arena was at capacity and will be shut down. By Sunday July 5, the temporary dump at
Christie Pits will be full, announced Geoff Rathbone, general manager of the city’s solid waste management services. 
As a result, the city is opening an additional two locations starting immediately on day 12 of the Toronto strike. 
“We are announcing today the opening of two new temporary garbage drop-off sites commencing at 3 p.m. today,” said Rathbone. “One is Centennial Park Arena … and the other is at Wilket Creek/Sunnybrook Park.”  Continue reading