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‘Worried’ and ‘betrayed’: 60 per cent had to cancel plans after basic income cancelled

in Community/Health/Local News/Poverty Reduction by
Kyle is in his 30s and he’s married with a new baby. He works 50 hours per week but still qualified for a basic income top-up.

OBIP Chronicles — More than 82 per cent of people who were receiving money through the Ontario Basic Income Pilot said they felt “worried” when they heard it was cancelled and another 76 per cent felt “betrayed.”

More than 1,500 of the 4,000 basic income pilot recipients agreed to help the Basic Income Canada Network and the Ontario Basic Income Network continue working for a basic income. BICN conducted a survey of those people. Well over 400 responses have already come back, representing more than 10 per cent of those receiving basic income in Ontario, allowing us to write this special series. The Lindsay Advocate, working in cooperation with BICN, is pleased to be the media partner highlighting these stories. Names have been changed to protect identities.

Jean, who is married with one child, says she had tried starting her own business with the additional income she was receiving.

“The company has not had enough time to get going…I had felt I had the Ontario Basic Income Program to back me, as I had been told I would,” she says in the survey.

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New Year’s Resolutions: Enhance your life, don’t deprive yourself

in Community/Health by
Don't forget to eat your veggies in 2019 and beyond. (While not expressly a part of Canada's Food Guide, yes, even humans can eat clover...)

Type “gym membership,” “fitness,”  “diet,” or “smoking cessation” into Google Trends (a very cool online tool) and you’ll see that searches for all of them spike in early January. No coincidence: with a new year many of us resolve to turn over a new leaf, develop good habits and curb bad ones. By the end of January searches for those terms drop off and, unfortunately, by then many New Year’s resolutions are abandoned.

We asked experts in a number of fields for their thoughts. What’s a single piece of advice they’d offer? What’s a resolution that might be manageable and is definitely worth doing? What could help ensure we stick with it?

Here are their suggestions. The areas covered include healthy eating, fitness, substance use and abuse, and the environment.

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Save community banks, save the post office: Time for postal banking in Canada

in Business/Columnists/Community/Poverty Reduction/Seniors by
The big banks are getting out of smaller communities. Is it time for postal banking?

One of the first things that the new Dominion of Canada did as a country, way back in April 1868, was create a postal bank. The idea was to create a banking system that everyday Canadians could access easily – and to serve customers that the established banks at the time showed little interest in serving. Postal banking existed in Canada until 1968.

All of the stakeholders of the postal system (Canada Post; Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) and the Canadian Postmasters and Assistants Association (CPAA) have examined the idea of re-establishing a postal bank. The CUPW and CPAA research relies heavily on the research of consultant John Anderson. His 82-page Why Canada Needs Postal Banking published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives contains some of the most detailed research on the topic.

Make no mistake: this is research funded by CUPW. And let’s face it: CUPW are a bit of a polarizing entity at the moment. So it’s perhaps not the most strategic time to be advocating for an increased role and more responsibilities for Canada Post — and its workers — in our life. The most recent strike no doubt rankled many of us, especially those of us waiting for Christmas gifts ordered online. And we are about to get another postage increase. On Jan. 14, 2019 a stamp bought in bulk will cost 90 cents. An individual stamp will cost us $1.05. That we can — in a time of $7 coffees — mail a letter from anywhere in Canada to anywhere in Canada for a measly $1.05 will be lost on those who use any excuse to bash Canada Post. I mean $1.05! That’s a whole nickel more than a non-existent buck-a-beer! But I digress.

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Tourist town: To close or not to close in Fenelon Falls

in Business/Community by

When the Fenelon Falls business that has survived the longest in one location, under the same ownership first opened, the Cow and Sow Eatery’s Dickon Robinson was repeatedly asked a seemingly simple question: “Are you going to stay open all year?”

Residents had learned that restaurants in the tourist town did not always operate year-round, even if they didn’t really know why. Robinson chose to stay open all year, and 22 years later he still operates 364 days, but the bottom line is not his only motivation.

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For women experiencing domestic abuse, pets often used as cruel leverage

in Community by

More than half of women delay leaving an abusive partner because of concerns for their pets, according to research from the University of Windsor.

Dr. Amy Fitzgerald, who released her research in 2017, also found a shocking 89 per cent of domestic violence cases that also involve some type of animal abuse.

Women’s Resources, serving the City of Kawartha Lakes, has been working hard to solve the barriers for women who need to leave an abuser. Since 1992, they have had 32,454 crisis calls and the Victoria’s Shelter Program has supported 2,537 women and 2,180 children. Now they are working with PAWs and Company to help solve the challenge facing women who need to leave an abusive situation, but have pets.

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Growing hope for the New Year

in Columnists/Community/Health by

I am increasingly being asked to speak to people about hope. This is not surprising. Given the decline of the insects that are drivers of our food system, the loss of the birds that keep dangerous insects in check, and the fact that it will soon be too hot for our food to germinate and grow, we are really in need of some hope. If the conversation has truly shifted from climate change to climate catastrophe, how can we possibly live in hope? In the face of so much death, where is hope found?

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Quarter of basic income recipients spent time volunteering: Survey

in Community/Poverty Reduction by

OBIP Chronicles — A quarter of the people who were collecting basic income chose to volunteer at least some of their time, once they felt more financially stable, according to a survey about the Ontario Basis Income Pilot.

Proponents of a basic income have long maintained that when people have a financial foundation they are more likely to give of their time to others.

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Seniors in crisis in Kawartha Lakes: Group calls on Mayor, MPP to help fill in the gaps

in Community/Health/Local News/Seniors by
Scores of seniors with some level of cognitive impairment across Kawartha Lakes are at risk of grave injury or death because there are no services for people like them.

He’s got a makeshift wood stove in a dilapidated trailer outside of town. She’s hoarding junk and debris — so much in fact that the doors to her home no longer open and parts of her floor are sagging. Another man burns flammable liquids to stay warm during the cold clutch of winter. In her postcard-perfect home, another woman constantly calls police to investigate phantom intruders.

This is but a snapshot of a growing number of seniors who are in danger in our community. They’re all over age 60 and most have lost at least some of their cognitive abilities. These are men and women who are not necessarily defined by poverty or rural postal codes. In fact, many of them live in nice homes in Lindsay or elsewhere in Kawartha Lakes and may be quite well off.

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So you want to be a municipal councillor?

in Community/Local News by
Councillor Andrew Veale, right, with Councillor Kathleen Seymour-Fagan, left.

An interview with Ward 4 Councillor Andrew Veale.

Morris: Andrew, you’re councillor for Ward 4. That’s Woodville, right?

Veale: Well, includes Woodville, but also Little Britain, Argyle, Valentia, Oakwood, and parts of Seagrave. Ward 4 stretches from Lake Scugog north to past Palestine Road and from Simcoe Street to OpMar Road and several others on the east boundary. There are roughly 8,500 residents.

Morris: And this is your second term as a councillor?

Veale: Yes.

Morris: Cushy job, eh?  I mean, you show up for  a couple of council meetings a month then cash your cheques?

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C.H.E.S.T. Fund:  Christmas comes early thanks to vision of Hydro One, former mayor

in Around Town/Community/Local News by
Who is this mysterious benefactor and how did this annual gift-giving come about?

In early December each year roughly a quarter of a million dollars in grants flows from C.H.E.S.T. Fund coffers into our community. As the fund requires, the money goes to “non-profit, community-based organizations that provide programs, projects, services or activities that enhance the quality of life for residents in the areas of health, arts, culture, leisure, heritage, education and the environment.” But we all benefit.

This year the exact amount disbursed was $288,375.45. The Advocate talked to three grant recipients to learn a little more about the projects the money will make possible and the impact those projects will have.

But before hearing from them, who is this mysterious benefactor and how did this annual gift-giving come about?

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