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Welcome to the Markham-Stouffville
Weekly Update for September 13, 2020

Back to School 2020

I want to wish all Markham-Stouffville students a safe and positive back to school. This year will be unlike any other, but by working together we can all play a part to keep our children, teachers and education workers safe and ensure our students continue to thrive and be inspired to learn during these extraordinary times.  

As our schools reopen their doors, parents should seek comfort in knowing that their child is returning to a school environment that is as safe as possible. 

Our health and safety protocols, developed by the leading medical minds in the country, coupled with our landmark investment in public education, will help ensure that our students can return to class safely.

For more information, please visit: www.ontario.ca/reopeningschools
Consultation with Local Farmers on Proposed Bill 156 Regulations
 
Last Wednesday, I joined Ontario’s Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs for a roundtable with local farmers to consult and receive feedback on proposed regulations for the Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, 2020. This legislation was introduced to address concerns about food safety, biosecurity and farm families feeling unsafe in their own homes.

Nearly 130 municipalities passed or supported council resolutions calling on the government to strengthen protections for farm families, employees and animals.
 
The public can provide input into a potential Minister’s Regulation for the Act by visiting Ontario’s Regulatory Registry until October 15, 2020 to ensure the Act is clear and easily interpreted to fulfill its intended purposes.

On September 2nd, the Ontario government proclaimed a portion of the Act which prohibits the stopping, hindering, obstructing or otherwise interfering with a motor vehicle transporting farm animals. This is dangerous for those who stop the trucks, pedestrians, livestock transporters, and other drivers.

The rights of people to participate in legal protests that take place in public spaces will always be protected, provided such protests do not have the potential to cause harm.  Careful work was put into crafting this Act to balance the rights of farmers and their farm operations as well the rights for people to participate in lawful protests on public property.
Ontario-Québec Summit
 
On September 9, the Premier of Ontario and Québec Premier François Legault concluded a successful Ontario-Québec Summit, in which both governments agreed to collaborate on accelerating economic recovery and job creation, working towards increasing health care funding sustainability and preparedness, and advancing other areas of mutual benefit for the people of Ontario and Québec.
 
Over the past few months, both provinces have surmounted extraordinary challenges due to COVID-19, from building unprecedented testing capacity to encouraging thousands of Ontario and Québec businesses to retool to make personal protective equipment and critical medical supplies. At the summit, Ontario and Québec agreed to continue their collaboration to share lessons learned from the pandemic and prepare their health care systems for a potential second wave of COVID-19.
 
Read details here:
https://news.ontario.ca/en/release/58314/ontario-quebec-summit-strengthens-ties-between-the-two-provinces
Daughters of the Vote Conference 2021
 
Equal Voice invites young women born between January 1st, 1993 and December 31st, 2001 to apply for the Daughters of the Vote program, taking place March 5-8, 2021.
 
The third edition of “Daughters of the Vote” is an ambitious initiative by Equal Voice that began in 2017 to mark the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in Canada.
 
In 2017, 338 delegates, representing every federal riding in Canada, were selected through an open call for applications to participate in a dynamic political leadership summit in Ottawa. The event was replicated in 2019, and will occur again in March 2021.

One delegate from every federal riding in Canada will be chosen to represent their community and vision for Canada at the event.

The deadline to apply is October 1st, 2020.

Read the Frequently Asked Questions for everything you need to know about applying, the selection process and the event itself:

https://www.equalvoice.ca/dov

To ensure the health and well-being of all delegates, staff, and volunteers, Equal Voice has made the decision to hold the first-ever Virtual Daughters of the Vote Program in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. This means that the 2021 program will be held entirely online. 
Ontario Expanding Innovative Mental Health and Addictions Services

The Ontario government is providing an additional $14.75 million to increase access to mental health and addictions services across the province.
 
Mental health is as important as physical health.  This funding will help support people from all walks of life during this unprecedented time, including families, young people, children, frontline workers, and Indigenous communities. It will be provided through the Support for People and Jobs Fund and will help community-based mental health and addictions programs meet increasing service demands.

For more information, visit here:

https://news.ontario.ca/en/release/58333/ontario-expanding-innovative-mental-health-and-addictions
Constituency Office Services
 
My constituency office is here to serve you. We offer assistance for various provincial government services such as the renewal of Driver's Licences, Health Cards, WSIB claims, ODSP/FRO cases, and any other service under provincial jurisdiction. Please call us at 905-642-2588 or email paul.calandra@pc.ola.org and my staff and I will be happy to assist you.

To reduce in-person visits to ServiceOntario, a number of provincially-issued documents have extended expiry dates until further notice. Please click here for further information. 

Best regards,

Paul Calandra, MPP
Markham-Stouffville