Rules created at the turn of the century have seen Mississauga lose out on more than $15 million in payments from Toronto Pearson Airport. But a dramatic drop in passenger volume as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic could lead to tens of millions in losses for the City and illustrates how unfair the system is to taxpayers in Mississauga.
Canada has often led the world in the criminalization of family violence, but the problem has gotten “out of hand” says the federal ombudsman for victims of crime. The killer virus is delivering another deadly lesson, and this one is aimed directly at men.
With the overwhelming volume of COVID-19 news, and the uncertainty that has taken over daily life, many have been hunting for ways to escape.
Whether that’s through new hobbies or old passions, the Brampton Library system has seen a serious spike in people looking for books and materials to help keep them occupied at home.
Brampton’s only full service hospital is the poster child for hallway healthcare and has struggled with capacity issues for years.
Now, while the city begins a process of reopening, critical care beds are running out fast.
Barely a step above stone tablets, Ontario’s court system has long been in need of an innovation upgrade to ensure timely access and get the wheels of justice moving properly.
The global pandemic could be the jolt it needs.
Leaders in both cities are grappling with an increasingly complex dilemma: infection rates are higher than in many parts of the province and most of the country, forcing officials to use localized data from public health officials and more caution when deciding when and how to reopen their communities. Meanwhile, frustration among many in the public, especially the business world, is mounting.
As the Province begins to ease measures under the state of emergency, the Region of Peel is not following suit, exactly. Officials are taking a more localized approach to reopening as new cases in Peel mirror a pattern similar to the start of the pandemic. The Region’s top public health official says more testing is needed if Peel expects to prevent continued transmission within local communities.
As Mississauga’s first light rail system moves closer to its launch in 2024, developers are flocking to the city. New proposals for six towers at Eglinton Avenue and Hurontario Street are among the boons the project has attracted.
With the provincial announcement that schools will not return at least until September, other learning options are being put on the table. Plans to “more than double” summer schools and allow some day camps have been laid out, but with the uncertainty caused by an unpredictable problem there are more questions than answers for parents trying desperately to keep their children engaged and occupied.
As the spread of the novel coronavirus lives through another week, more professionals need mental health support. But is there enough available?
It’s a question that will likely loom for years, as our healthcare networks face a prolonged crisis that could overwhelm an already stretched system.
For years, the Region of Peel has passed the buck on housing. Every budget sees councillors favouring lower tax increases and sharp hikes for policing, over subsidized housing and shelter support.
In the face of COVID-19, the Region has finally been forced to act and faces a major hit that could have been avoided.
After almost two months of inaction, the Fiat Chrysler assembly line in Brampton is set to get rolling again. Some workers are already inside as preparations take place for a full reopening after the Victoria Day weekend. With a killer virus still an invisible threat, the workplace, like all others in Ontario and around the world, is undergoing some serious changes.
The greed and irrelevance of sports shows no signs of abating during the toughest days of the 2020 pandemic.
A perfect record on the gridiron didn’t lead to fame and fortune in the NFL, but Brampton’s Chuck Ealey came north to Canada to use his skills as a quarterback and “pass” along some important lessons in life to his high-achieving children. They continue the fight for justice and equality in Brampton and Mississauga.
Nishan Duraiappah has a tall task. The man who took over as the head of Peel police in the fall has to turn around one of the country’s largest departments.
Police culture is traditionally a hard thing to change, with entrenched institutional attitudes. The chief now has at least two more allies from his old force to help rehabilitate a department that many in the community had lost faith in.
A regular patient in the renal program at Brampton Civic Hospital is worried he will never be tested for COVID-19, even after the organization told The Pointer testing for people who might have been exposed during an outbreak among staff working in the program would be implemented.
Large anchor organizations in Mississauga and Brampton are offering supplies to food banks and community organizations across both cities.
But as the pandemic continues to cause economic upheaval, which could last for months, a more coordinated and sustained plan to ensure the safety of residents is needed.
In January, Mississauga proudly said it would be putting millions of dollars into renovating its City Centre Transit Terminal.
However, even as the work begins, plans are afoot for a new Downtown Terminal that will replace the current setup altogether.
As the majority of the population stays home to stop the spread of COVID-19, a small minority are flouting the rules.
Some reckless drivers are risking their lives and the lives of others in harebrained attempts to push their cars to the limit.
A virtual PDSB meeting saw action on two more directives from the Ministry of Education.
Despite this, board members continued to demonstrate they don’t — or don’t want to — understand the issues at the heart of the ministry’s review, which revealed widespread problems with equity in one of the country’s most diverse school systems.
Financial troubles in Mississauga have been piling up since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Chief financial officer Gary Kent says the projected losses would equate to a cancelled community centre and park.
A message from the Ministry of Education to school boards made it clear: “synchronous” learning, including the use of popular video platforms, has to be implemented by all schools. The announcement has forced school boards in Peel to revisit their position on the use of innovative online tools and develop better solutions to ongoing issues.
After hospitals across the country cancelled elective surgeries to make capacity for the fight against COVID-19, many Canadians were left to deal with a range of maladies on their own.
The province has now created a framework for how some hospitals can begin to schedule procedures, but many suffering in Peel could be waiting a long time.
Premier Doug Ford and many in the public are breathing down the neck of health officials responsible for novel coronavirus testing across the province.
The faster places like Peel can meet requirements, the faster life will return to a closer version of normal.
This pandemic has clearly shown the cost of playing politics with the facts just to feed the markets and get elected. The inability to grasp the current crisis shows the fault lines within the world’s superpower, exposed after four decades of the worst excesses of a-social individualism.
After a decade and a half at the tiller, Mississauga’s CAO and City Manager is retiring. Speaking to The Pointer, Janice Baker reflected on growth, public transit and what she hopes her legacy will be. On this Mother’s Day, she can rest assured, knowing that her place in the city’s history will be forever remembered.
Cities like Mississauga and Brampton are mandated to balance their budgets, meaning COVID-19 will ratchet up the pressure to be fiscally prudent, when they need to be bold. They need more power and proper ways to raise money so they can prepare for the knowns, and unknowns.
You wouldn’t guess by looking at the turnout for municipal elections, but councillors hold a lot of power. Local representatives are in charge of everything from safety, public health, crime and public transit to the way we grow and plan for the future. However, there are limits too. Councillors who do things like pretend they can change immigration policy or gun laws are fooling their residents and wasting valuable staff time, often to score cheap political points or plot for future careers.
As Ontario looks to slowly ease lockdown measures, many local business owners are raring to go.
In Peel, a variety of stores and services say they have already considered the precautions needed to stay safe and are desperately waiting for the green light.
When the pandemic ends, physical distancing measures will fade away and people will slowly return to their normal lives.
For City Hall, with a staff that has been mostly working from home in recent months and projects pushed aside to deal with the ongoing emergency, the impacts could be felt for a long time.
A Peel resident has lost his job and position as a school council member after using intolerant language in response to Brampton’s decision to allow Mosques to broadcast the call to prayer.
Ravi Hooda’s reply to Mayor Patrick Brown on Twitter was met with widespread condemnation.
After approval last week, the decision was met with mounds of criticism from residents in the city, demanding the broadcast of the sunset call to prayer from Mosques be stopped. A motion on the matter was suggested Wednesday, but was never put forward because of questions around its purpose.
Two anchor employers in Brampton are grappling with the impacts of COVID-19.
One, Maple Lodge Farms, is the latest big company in Brampton to have the novel coronavirus slip through its doors while Fiat Chrysler employees prepare to get back on the assembly line later this month.
Putting a bird feeder in your backyard not only helps our feathered friends, but studies show it could improve our state of mind, too.
With COVID-19 keeping everyone penned up and mental health concerns on the upswing, finding ways to ease stress is essential. One way is to reconnect with Mother Nature. The benefits could be long-lasting, especially after the lockdown ends.
At the end of April, Premier Doug Ford announced frontline workers would be receiving an extra $4 per hour until August. A variety of groups have asked to be added to the list since the announcement, but Mississauga’s firefighters say they’re already fairly compensated.
Despite a long list of binding directives handed down in March from the province to eradicate systemic discrimination and anti-Black racism within the Peel District School Board, little progress has been seen.
That was, until Education Minister Stephen Lecce ordered another investigator to step in. Since the move the school board seems to have been jolted into action.
The call to prayer is a staple in every Muslim’s life, announced five times a day to mark the five daily prayers. But existing noise by-laws made the broadcasting of the Azan outside of Mosques illegal, until temporary exceptions were recently made for Ramadan during an exceptional time when religious gatherings are not allowed.
New development rules being floated by Queen’s Park could dramatically reduce the amount of new greenspace in cities.
Calculations made by staff in Brampton and Mississauga paint a dire picture of revenue lost to the development industry, increasing the burden on taxpayers.
As it continues to hemorrhage money, the City of Mississauga has started to consider charging riders for transit again. The installation of plexiglass shields on all MiWay vehicles will allow councillors to consider making riders pay once more as soon as the end of June.
Thanks to federal and provincial assistance, more than $11 million has been allocated to community organizations serving vulnerable populations in Peel.
But with the impact of the pandemic likely lasting for months, even years, it’s not clear if that will be enough.
Leaders in the Peel District School Board have long been unresponsive to the wants and needs of the students and parents they serve. They oversee an organization rife with systemic discrimination.
How long can harm to students be tolerated, justified by the fear and confusion some feel when confronted by change? The Pointer thinks it's way past time to remove this failed group of so-called leaders.
The first warm weekend of the season has Ontarians dreaming of the outdoors. Maybe, just maybe, the virus will cooperate.
That feeling was bolstered by a statement from Canada’s public health officer who says the country is winning the battle against COVID-19.
The phone updates have been a fixture in the city’s response to the novel coronavirus and are used as opportunities to share information. Many participants aren’t just keen residents; the virtual gatherings allow people to 'rally round the flag' during a crisis that's enveloped most of the world.
Lakeview Village, one of the most anticipated projects in Ontario, is downwind from a sewage plant. After discussion with the Region of Peel, the consortium behind the massive redevelopment has agreed to pay for an interim solution, but issues remain about who will foot the bill for a costly fix in the long-term.
Families with parents or grandparents in vulnerable situations are growing more desperate for news from care facilities.
Some understaffed private homes, conscious of their company’s image, appear to be resisting calls for transparency, leaving worried children and grandchildren in the dark.
The Peel District School Board is under increasing pressure since a provincial review of the troubled organization was announced in November. Now, Queen’s Park has had to hire an investigator because of concern the board will not adhere to all 27 mandatory directives under its probe, which found alarming evidence of widespread discrimination. The Opposition NDP, including its Peel MPPs, has lost faith in trustees and in a blistering letter is demanding even stronger action against the board's negligent leaders.
What happens in the short term or when we work our way through this pandemic and a second plague of mental health concerns impacts our healthcare system? Governments and private sector agencies are stepping forward to respond, while a poll released this week shows half of Canadians said their mental health has worsened from the impact of this pandemic.
The call for desperately needed aid from Ottawa comes as estimated losses in Brampton and Mississauga continue to grow with no guarantee of help in sight. Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown is counting on a bail out after he froze the city’s tax revenues two years in a row.
Peel District School Board Chair Brad MacDonald and Director Peter Joshua spent much of Wednesday evening deflecting and shutting down questions from Trustee Kathy McDonald, who tried in vain to get answers and take action on issues related to systemic racism within the board, which was forced to admit it has a problem after a damning provincial review revealed a culture of widespread discrimination. The meeting provided more proof of this.
The virus’s spread in the community appears to have slowed. However, it's a different story in the region’s long-term care homes.
Grace Manor, Brampton’s hardest hit long-term care facility, has reported another resident’s death.
For weeks, the rate of COVID-19 infections in Ontario sped up, each day bringing worse news than the last. At the beginning of the month, modelling was released showing just where the pandemic was leading.
However, updated numbers two weeks later showed things were looking up. While public officials can’t play around with numbers and facts, it’s clear the public responds when the data is scariest.