Updates

Dear Council: Fight Bill 23, a threat to local democracy!

Today we made a submission to Council on Bill 23 (More Homes Built Faster Act, 2022), expressing our grave concerns that the bill will only exacerbate the current housing crisis and have serious and long-lasting negative impacts on housing affordability in our city by removing the rental replacement policy, limiting Inclusionary Zoning, and changing the definition of affordable housing.

We urged Council to ask the Premier and the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing to reconsider these changes, which not only dismantle policy made through extensive consultation but also threaten local democracy. 

We are losing control of our local democracy. It’ll take every one of us to take power back.

At its core, local democracy requires both democratic processes and the participation of residents. It’s about ensuring that people have a say in local decisions that directly affect their daily lives. 

In Canada, local democracy has always been precarious. As creatures of the Province, Toronto and other Ontario municipalities are at the whim of the provincial government, a truth more apparent with each passing day.

Poverty drops in Toronto, but it's temporary. So what can we learn?

Newly released data from the 2021 Census indicate that poverty1 was reduced for many Toronto residents in 2020. The data discussed below, which are based on 2020 income, show that significantly fewer people in Toronto lived on low income in 2020 compared to 2015. However, even Statistics Canada has cautioned that these developments are not expected to continue in 2021 and 2022.

2022 Call for Nominations to Our Board of Directors

Social Planning Toronto (SPT) is a nonprofit, charitable community organization that works to advance an equitable, inclusive, and accessible Toronto shaped by the diversity of its residents and rooted in social and economic justice. Our work challenges inequity in our city  through knowledge generation, debate, civic engagement, advocacy, and collaboration  to spark social and policy change. 

Newcomers and immigrants, share your stories!

We're seeking newcomers and immigrants to share their stories and opinions about living, and finding their way, in Toronto!

Participants will be offered $75 for attending a 1.5 hour session. Sessions will take place on Zoom, and will be conducted in English.

Announcing SPT's first Director, Engagement & Strategic Initiatives

Social Planning Toronto is thrilled to announce our new Director, Engagement & Strategic Initiatives: Melissa Wong. Melissa will start on March 7, and we are all very excited! She comes to us with great experience. 

Organizations Call on Mayor and Council to Address Crises With Urgent Investment and Better Budget Process

"Mayor Tory and City Councillors, our city is at a crossroads. Amid multiple and intersecting crises, if you continue to take a “business as usual” approach you will preside over a rapid decline in the wellbeing and quality of life of Toronto residents. Instead, we urge you to show bold and brave leadership and set Toronto on a different course."  

 

More than a decade of austerity budgets have left the City of Toronto ill-equipped to respond to multiple and mounting crises — in housing and homelessness, food security, mental health and addictions, child care, transit, and so much more. 

Tomorrow, February 17, Toronto City Council votes on a "status quo" budget that does little to turn the tide.

Today, 59 organizations working with Toronto communities make an urgent call to Mayor John Tory and City Councillors to not only invest in the 2022 City budget to address the crises in our city, but also to reimagine the budget process, making it accessible, transparent, democratic, participatory, and equitable.

Read our full statement below.

2022 City Budget: Learn more, get involved, and have your say!

This Thursday, January 13, the City of Toronto launches its draft 2022 Budget. Throughout the Budget process, we'll keep you informed about how you can learn more, get involved, and have your say!

Opportunity: Researcher & Policy Analyst Position (One-Year Contract, Full Time)

Social Planning Toronto (SPT) is an independent social planning organization. SPT challenges inequality in our city through knowledge generation, debate, civic engagement, advocacy, and collaboration, to spark social and policy change.

Social Planning Toronto is looking for a one-year contract full-time researcher & policy analyst (35 hours per week), with the possibility of extension.

Housing in a State of Emergency: Shelters, Encampments, and Human Rights Discourses in Toronto (Seminar by the CITY Institute at York University)

This CITY Seminar will explore the tensions and ambiguities of the local state in the provision and illegalization of emergency housing. By emergency housing we refer to both municipally provided shelter space and the informal dwelling practices of unhoused/dehoused residents of the city. Contextualized in the current housing and COVID-19 crises in Toronto, our discussion addresses housing in a state of emergency from 3 different yet complementary perspectives: 1) public engagement and the role of oppositional publics in the siting of emergency shelters; 2) socio-legal questions surrounding allowable small structures during the pandemic on public and private property; and (3) the selective use of “housing as a human right” discourse.

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