Two York candidates run for same council seat

Challengers for Kyle Rae’s council seat on Toronto city council are pushing for more moderate development and more community involvement through more town hall meetings as the race heats up in Ward 27 (Toronto Centre-Rosedale), reported The Moment newspaper Nov. 8. Rae has served in council since 1991 and now faces a slate of seven challengers, including Gary Leroux, a design instructor in York’s Faculty of Fine Arts, and Susan Gapka, who has been a senator and Board of Governors member at York and a student of public policy and administration.

Leroux said he wanted to see more leadership in council, vowing to work with the residents and ratepayers associations and facilitate more communication among communities. “We have to get them working together so that everybody in Ward 27 knows what’s going on,” he said. Another key issue for the council contender is transit, which he said needs to be upgraded and expanded in the city. “The TTC is too busy looking at the day-to-day operations of its business to look at long-term opportunities,” he said. “We need to get butts moving on the York University [subway] extension and implement a system like they have in parts of the 905 where they use a smart card.”

Gapka said homelessness was a critical issue that must be dealt with, stating that improving that situation would create a better environment for all residents. “You can’t talk about reducing homelessness or creating more housing without also realizing that it will improve community safety,” she said. The candidate was a founding member of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Community Advisory Committee that worked with police, and she said she had built a strong relationship with Toronto Police Services. “Police are an important part of the city and how we feel safe, and I think a strong police presence is needed in the community,” she said.

Tubeless Girls nominated for national award

Bulkley Valley musical duo Tubeless Girls are in the running for Young Performer of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards, reported BC’s Smithers Interior News Nov. 9. Katie Savage, 17, and York student Lisa Conway, 18, who call Telkwa and Quick home, will be heading to Edmonton for the second annual national event on Dec. 10.

The twosome released their second self-titled album last May, which was entirely self-produced and recorded by the duo. “I am very happy and very shocked and surprised,” Conway said. Right now Conway is excited about her courses at York University and living in Toronto. “It is great. It was kind of overwhelming at the beginning being in a huge city with lots of musicians,” Conway said. The Tubeless Girls have played over 50 performances and multiple music festivals, from the Kispiox to the Midsummer Music Festival in Smithers.

Information in York prof’s report is banned under non-existent laws

A report on sexual harassment of a Memorial University professor has been released, but heavily censored, due to privacy laws, says the university president, reported The Telegram (St. John’s) Nov. 10. However, The Telegram has learned that the applicable privacy laws haven’t yet become legislation. The so-called Katz Report, named for its author Shirley Katz, a socioloigy professor in York’s Faculty of Arts, is an examination of Memorial’s response to the alleged sexual harassment of political scientist Deepa Khosla during the three months she spent working with the university before her death (due to natural causes) in November 2005.