1. Yes I support these events and would be happy to participate.
2. I think by keeping conversation and dialogue open there is less chance and opportunity for misinformation to be spread. It is when we don’t discuss these important issues openly that false information and rumours spread. If elected I am open to any discussion to combat this trend.
Aly thank you for your email. In general I have always given consideration to all requests that have come to Council. I will continue to do so for any community group and in that process will listen to all opinions as they relate to the topic to be addressed. As for your specific request you will find blow my responses to the questions in your email. I look forward to more discussion moving forward.
Arnprior is unique whereby we have established numerous Advisory Committees to gain input and information to help us address areas of responsibility and concern to our Residents. As for the Arnprior Pride initiatives Council has established the Inclusivity and Diversity Committee. The Committee like other Advisory Committees will review and discuss the requests and make a recommendation to Council. At that time all the information will be available to Council members to consider and debate and provide direction to staff.
As in the past, I will continue to support and give serious consideration to all requests from Arnprior Pride and the Committee’s recommendations. Council will discuss the request and a majority vote at the Council table will provide staff direction on any requests bought forward.
I feel that real honest dialogue between Council and Council members individually with Arnprior Pride as an organization and on an individual basis is a good base to begin the process. This would include the Inclusivity and Diversity Committee of course. But more individual and small group discussions will help Council members including myself gain more knowledge and insight of individuals personal perspectives on issues.
Formal education process will continue through our Human Resource Department and be made available to Staff, Council and I would like to see it also be provide to the Community at large for consideration.
As I indicated above to build on the process of open real dialogue and conversations one a more individual basis. Then using that knowledge and understanding for Council, Staff and Arnprior Pride to demonstrate the understanding and cooperation to the Community at large. This I think will bring a more willingness to LISTEN and Learn on both sides and gain a level of understanding that can begin to bring all together.
Thank again for your interest in the election process and our Community as a whole.
Thank you for reaching out to me for my comments.
My goal as a municipal councillor has always been to help all citizens in the Town of Arnprior feel safe, supported and protected. Everyone has the right to make their own choices and decisions for their life’s path.
I will continue to live my life with this philosophy whether elected to council or not. I was raised with teachings from my parents to treat everyone the same way I want to be treated. There are no exceptions to this. While not all initiatives can receive financial support, I will do what I can to support Arnprior Pride.
Collaboration is a critical leadership skill. It is important to hear and work with all stakeholders in our Town.
I am happy to work with Arnprior Pride and be part of collaborative efforts. I promise to continue learning about the ways I can be supportive. When we know better, we do better.
Education is critical. We need to continue finding ways to help all members of our community learn how they can play a role in making Arnprior a safe and Inclusive Community.
I sure will, supporting local Pride initiatives within our town will only help create a more inclusive and safe community for our LGBTQ+ youth and adults to call home.
Honest disclosure: I was in support of one crosswalk; with the trans chevron incorporated into the rainbow, similar to the local Arnprior Pflag lawn signs. I still support this option.
Having an opportunity to meet and talk with Pride community members would be a great initiative for collaboration and transparency. Having an opportunity to share our similarities and differences will foster better understandings, can educate and hopefully create a more inclusive Arnprior. I would certainly gain from this experience and would feel more confident when speaking on LGBTQ+ issues. Building an open, honest and respectful working relationship with the Pride community will make me a better community leader.
The formation of the Inclusivity and Diversity Committee was forward progress and was a reactive response to a difficult time. Continuing to harness the successes of this committee and honest and respectful communication from everyone will lead to a more proactive approach in making Arnprior a safer and inclusive community. If we continue to educate ourselves, communicate and look for similarities in others rather than differences we might just turn into the happiest town around!
I came across the video years ago, it certainly resonates with me. Its from Denmark and title “TV2 All that we share”, it’s certainly worth a look. https://youtu.be/jD8tjhVO1Tc
Thank you for taking the time to ask candidates these important questions regarding Arnprior Pride initiatives within the Town of Arnprior. As someone who grew up a Gay man in Arnprior I would have loved to have these initiatives in place when I was younger and I am so thankful for all the work Arnprior Pride and PFlag have done in the town in the last few years. Yes there is more work to be done and I am committed to making Arnprior a safer place for the 2SLGBTIA+ community.
Yes I will continue to support Arnprior Prides initiatives within the Town of Arnrpior. It is also very important that we continue to celebrate Pride year round and not just in June and the summer months. I am aware that it takes alot of work to plan and organize such initiatives and I know that communication and collaboration with the town will make planning events much easier. If elected councillor I will commit to voting in favour of installing the trans flag crosswalk, and will advocate for yearly funding to help repaint both the crosswalks. I would also commit to raising the Progress Pride flag at all town facilities during the entire month of June instead of only for one week.
Communication and collaboration is needed between council and all community organizations. I agree that better partnership will be needed with Arnprior Pride and the incoming council to ensure that every voice is heard. As someone who is part of the community I will be a diverse voice at the council table. If elected I also plan to improve the Diversity and Inclusion committee and make it more a community led initiative rather than a town led sub committee. We need more community input on this topic and I would like to see a seat at this table for every organization that deals with marginalized communities in Arnprior, meaning a seat would be dedicated to Arnprior Pride on this committee. I also think that I can strengthen the relationship between Council and Arnprior Pride as I have experience being involved in current Pride initiatives in Arnprior, in addition to that I also have experience in working on Pride initiatives with the Renfrew County District School Board during my time as Student Trustee and Trustee for the past 6 years. To improve that open communication councillors could be invited to a few Arnprior Pride meetings a year and bring an up to date report on what is happening in the community.
The town of Arnprior needs to commit to create a safe and inclusive community for 2SLGBTIA+ youth and adults. Doing this is not going to be an easy task and education needs to be put at the forefront of this. By educating people about Gender Indentiy and Sexual Orientation, and the history of the community it can help people who have different views change their mind about the subject at hand. For example, the town could host a speaker series on such topics at the Public Library or Museum that could bring community members together. I would also like to see a Diversity training program implemented that all businesses and organizations can take part in. This will help create safer places in the community. Additionally, I would like to see more recreation programming targetted to the 2SLGBTQIA+ community for both seniors and youth.
1) If elected, I will absolutely continue to support initiatives that help improve this community for all its members. Everyone in Arnprior deserves to feel safe and comfortable within the community.
2)I think a way I can strengthen a working relationship with the Pride community is by being available to listen to the issues and concerns. I think it’s important to listen and learn before making decisions that impact different communities. The only way to do this, is by talking with community reps and working together to make improvement in the areas needed.
3) I believe that there are things this town could do to help create a safe and inclusive community, such as using town buildings for social events. Once again I would want to hear, and understand more, the challenges and issues that exist, but would work to resolve these issues.
Thank you for your time,
I recently had an insightful conversation, and it came to my attention that the term “ally” can be fraught with challenges and performative actions that don’t create meaningful change.
Being an ally means action, not just words. I want to be an ally and need to recognise that my social location as a heterosexual person means that I must collaborate and listen to 2SLGTBQIA+ and diverse voices in an effort to promote and support equality and queer rights and experiences. I respect the fact that to do so, it must be something that other people would say about me rather than a claim I can make.
That said, I will call myself a proud supporter of the 2SLGTBQIA+ community. I always have been, I always will be.
My values and beliefs as a supporter were created as part of my upbringing. Every person has the right to be who they are meant to be—without judgement or discrimination.
I will always support Arnprior’s Pride initiatives. I believe we should do more to celebrate and recognise 2SLGTBQIA+ History Month (can we start now, it is this month after all!), Pride, and Trans Day of Visibility. This will help people learn more about 2SLGTBQIA+ rights and make everyone feel included.
There’s a variety of ways to do this and collaboration and working partnerships are the foundation of positive movement. All ideas do need buy in from Arnprior Pride before jumping in to accomplish anything. Here are a few ideas to consider:
• Raising the flag is important. I believe that this is an event that should be celebrated. I would love to see this as the kick off to Pride month in Arnprior—and have the raising at a time when more people can attend—it’s an occasion to be celebrated. During this ceremony it will be important to hear from local 2SLGBTQIA+ voices and experiences.
• Who doesn’t love a parade? Let’s work on getting Arnprior its own Pride parade—it allows everyone to show respect to the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. It also helps raise awareness so that people can break free from the stigma and biases—especially in small towns.
• Education and training provide a whole new level of understanding and sensitivity that I believe is missing in leadership and public facing positions here in Arnprior. It’s beyond time to start. Again, the best way to learn is through 2SLGBTQIA+ for their expertise and life experience.
I am a proud supporter of the 2SLGTBQIA+ community.
I recognise that that homophobia, transphobia, biphobia, and other types of discrimination exist and have a negative effect on the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. I know that opposing and getting rid of cis-heteronormativity requires continuous learning and purposeful action— it’s easy to stay quiet and not speak up—the right thing to do is to call it out when need be. I will continue to act by:
• Challenging heteronormativity
• Recognizing and stopping microaggressions
• Confronting stereotypes
The bottom line is that I want to help create a culture that does not accept homophobia, transphobia or biphobia.
I can commit to my continual learning, I recognise that I will not always get it right but that queer rights and voices need to be heard in areas of policy and leadership. As a supporter, I can promise I will always be open and transparent. What I will specifically do is listen to what it is that needs to be done. And I can and will champion those needs.
I will be a champion and a voice at the local, provincial and federal level for you.
There are so many things that can be done to create safe, inclusive, equitable communities. Here’s a start of what we can do:
• Listen to what 2SLGBTQIA+ youth have to say and follow through on actions
• Work with Arnprior Pride to see how we can work together to strengthen community support and how we can partner to support a 2SLGBTQIA+ youth group
• Seek 2SLGTBQIA+ representation in both leadership and community bodies
• Call into question current practices that are not inclusive
• Be a good example of someone who is kind and inclusive—for example, I’m committed to educating myself and others around inclusive language like the use of personal pronouns
• Stay informed about what is happening and get involved in the fights ahead
I am dedicated to working with and continuing supporting current Arnprior Pride community initiatives. Ensuring that those in the LGBTQ+ community are respected and heard as key members of our community. I am open to any recommendation from the Inclusivity and Diversity Advisory Committee on any expansion of initiatives. I am committed to listening and learning from those of all different perspectives and backgrounds in our community.
Arnprior Pride is a really important community initiative that has done great work in building bridges to parts of the community that have often not been heard.
There are plenty of areas that council can have a more active role in facilitating a collaborative relation with Arnprior Pride. Municipal grant funding proposals can always be part of the conversation with initiatives going forward. In kind donated services from the town are also an area where that conversation can continue in the future, for example waiving community hall rentals or park fees for fundraising drives. Partnerships with the recreation department are also areas that can broaden that inclusive environment throughout our town and build a better working relationship with the Pride community.
I am a big believer that we are all a part of team Arnprior. Regardless of background or perspective, as members of this community we all need to stand together in order to make this community safe and inclusive for all members of the community. Creating that safe and inclusive environment starts with listening to the differing perspectives and experiences of those on the Inclusivity and Diversity Advisory Committee especially in planning policy. There are areas in which we as community leaders and staff at town hall can learn from these differing perspectives through training for example. It all comes back to that feeling of community, that everyone in Arnprior is respected and most importantly listened to going forward. That we all, no matter your background, are on team Arnprior and when you succeed we all succeed.
Pride has planted some amazing initiatives in Arnprior and I am happy to support them as they grow and blossom! As a council, I believe we have an obligation to listen to, to respect, and to recognize the diversity that makes Arnprior a great place to be.
I support the expansion, and revisitation of, Pride initiatives with the full appreciation that representation evolves as our understanding does. The rainbow flag itself is the symbol of a progressive ethos and evolves, and will evolve, as we do and the community does. Daniel Quasar’s creation of the “Pride Progress” flag is one such example, and the UK’s inclusion of intersex in a further design is another. I am willing to listen and learn.
To expand our scope of responsibility past symbolism, making events, fundraisers, and initiatives visible helps to embrace, and foster, an authentic sense of community and of belonging. It shouts “We see you! You are welcome here and you are not alone!”
As an educator, one of my greatest strengths is to approach situations and causes with empathy, compassion, and the willingness to listen. I am steadfast in my resolve to lift up others before myself and I believe this is a key quality in an ally. I support Pride because I support human rights and not for my own personal gain.
I am one voice among many: as a collaborative and progressive member of our Council, I will work to be an example for my colleagues by being open to dialogue and progress. I can specifically strengthen my working relationship with the Pride community by committing to being educated in the field of diversity and inclusion. I’m studying online right now at the University of Guelph-Humber and my course load includes a strong focus on progressive social education.
Being an ally means being mindful of the need for continuous improvement and understanding. It seems like a small thing, but even starting by learning, and using, proper terminology goes a long way and is a step that anyone can take. For my part, I am willing to make mistakes, to apologize and to learn from them, in the pursuit of being a greater ally.
I fully understand that some people are not ready to begin the journey of growth and acceptance but ensuring LGBTQ2S+ are safe and included in our community is an absolute priority that transcends this. Did you know, for example, that there are no current bylaws to address hateful graffiti? It took over 4 months for a large racial slur to be removed from the post of a very prominent sign on Daniel Street. This sign itself had the Town’s logo and directions to prominent locations in Town! What message does it send when we are lethargic at removing outright hateful messaging. In this case, the sign was on County property and we had no ability to demand its immediate removal.
We cannot turn a blind eye to hate or be slow/unwilling to challenge it. I firmly believe that if individuals in position of privilege are hesitant to take swift and decisive action, we have failed those who are vulnerable.
Specifically, to the question: we must ensure at the Town level that the services and amenities we offer in Arnprior are sensitive, and responsive, to those who co-exist as a part of our community. It means asking questions and being committed to finding out answers. Do we have private change rooms at the Nick Smith Centre? Have we developed our recreation programming with input from the Pride community? Do we partner effectively to amplify Pride messaging? Are we seeking social and financial support from the County to make the needs of LGBTQ2S+ residents and visitors a priority? Do LGBTQ2S+ seniors, who grew up in a much different social environment than ours, feel safe and welcomed in expressing who they are today? These are all the types of questions I’d like to seek answers to.
1. An emphatic yes I will continue to be a strong voice of support for Arnprior Prides initiatives. I would like to see Arnprior Prides events happen regularly throughout the year in conjunction with municipal government and other supporting groups. My family has been a proud supporter of Pflag in Renfrew County for years. We have walked in the Pride Walk in Pembroke, we have supported events put on in Renfrew, and of course all of our great events here in our town.
I followed council closely during the discussion around the trans flag crosswalk. I disagree with their decision, and I fully support a trans crosswalk.
I have seen how Pride activities have grown throughout the county over the years and I would support Arnprior Pride in growing their events and initiatives to help bring more awareness and acceptance to our town.
2. I believe that Arnprior Pride is an important group and strong advocate for members of our community. The first thing the new council needs to do is to meet with Arnprior Pride and listen to their desires and goals for the organization and listen to them about what they are looking for from council.
For me personally, I will ensure I will not only attend Arnprior Pride events, but fully support them. For me it’s not just about photo opportunities, but a chance to show my support and interest in what the people of Arnprior have to say. To me it just makes sense to ensure that communities with vulnerable members feel safe, supported and heard.
3. Education. Education and communication are key to helping create a safe and inclusive community for LGBTQ2S+ youth and adults. I would like to work with our local library with the creation of a human library in where we can have conversations designed to challenge stigmas and stereotypes.
As a member of council, I would work with Arnprior Pride on finding and sourcing available grants to help support Arnprior Pride put on larger events during Pride Month and other events throughout the year.
In Closing, I have and always will be an ally and advocate for the LGBTQ2S+ community. I have been advocating for the LGBTQ2S+ community since my early days as a social service worker, now as a father of children who are members or the LGBTQ2S+ community, my advocating has only grown louder and stronger.
If elected to council, I will bring my advocacy, and listening skills to council to ensure that all of our town is properly listened to and heard.
Life experience will guide my way as coach and manager of a new group, (or returnees) of 5 councillors. My position gives me the opportunity to discover and promote the strengths and passions of each individual councillor. In this great system we call democracy, the rights, wants, and needs of all citizens will be given equal consideration.
As I have noticed, candidates platforms vary, according to age and lifestyles, and all care very much for ‘our town’.
In these changing times, many pressures seem to be pushing cultures towards hatred, disrespect, violence, and chaos. We must not fall into this mindset and this new council will stand for all people. Open and transparent discussion will be continuous, ideas and suggestions will be discovered, and decisions will be made in a Democratic way.
I have grown up with many friends, business associates, and acquaintances from all walks of life. I respect all law abiding citizens and expect the same.
Most people can hear !
The successful LISTEN !
Looking forward to making Arnprior a better place to live.
I support Arnprior Pride's initiatives, ie Pride month, fundraisers. The Rainbow Flag (crosswalk) are representative of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer pride, and that June is LGBTQ+ Pride Month. As you are aware Council defeated a Delegation to install a second crosswalk for the Trans Flag crosswalk.
This council I believe has been proactive in that an Ad Hoc Committee ('Inclusivity Diversity Advisory Committee was formed). As a result, the Arnprior Cultural Fair was created which to me was a huge success. I believe thru this committee more initiatives could be taken by the town.
An excellent question but I don't have a specific answer. I'm hoping that thru the Inclusivity Diversity Advisory Committee there will be ideas that provide more education as to how Council and residents of Arnprior could create a safe and inclusive community.
1. I will absolutely continue to support Arnprior Pride’s initiatives within the community! During COVID, I participated in the Pride BINGO! When the Rainbow Crosswalk was installed in Arnprior, I took my children and we walked across it together and talked about how Love is Love and why the crosswalk was so important. I am also proud to have on my front lawn an Arnprior Pride sign that says “Everyone is Welcome Here.” A few years ago I also helped with the initiative ‘River of Rainbows,’ where Rainbow Flags were raised at a number of municipalities for the first time, I also spoke at one of the council in favour of the flag raising.
I would like to see more fundraisers and events to support Arnprior Pride’s initiatives; I would like to see a Drag Fashion show or a Brunch event to help fund the instalment of the Trans Flag Crosswalk or other projects. I believe these events should run all year and not just during Pride month.
2. The outgoing council has shown some support for Pride initiatives in the past, albeit fairly passive. Our hope would be to develop a more active and transparent partnership with the incoming councillors to allow for growth of our organization and better collaboration with the town of Arnprior. How do you see yourself making this a reality, and what can you do specifically to strength your working relationship with the Pride community?
Answer: If elected I would like to have a meeting with Arnprior Pride by the end of the year with the new council to listen to them and see what are their hopes and goals for the future.
I would also commit to open communication with Arnprior Pride during the new council term and not just during Pride month or festivities. I would like to strike up an additional committee or include in another committee, an update from Arnprior Pride on a monthly basis or every other month. I think communication is key and the town needs to be open to learning from the experiences of members from Arnprior Pride and the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.
As someone, who went to high school in the early 1990s, 2SLGBTQIA+ was not spoken about in high school. I the town needs to work on developing a strong partnership with Arnprior Pride and the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.
With that being said, I would like to bring in different speakers to educate people of all ages. This would include small business owners and different community organizations.
3. I would like to see the Town work with local businesses and Canada's LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce to help all businesses become Rainbow Registered, which is a national accreditation for LGBT+ friendly businesses and organizations. For more information visit: https://www.cglcc.ca/
I would want to check with Arnprior Pride, but I think that we need to figure out a way to recognize and celebrate our 2SLGBTQIA+ leaders in our community. We need to make Arnprior’s 2SLGBTQIA+ community more visible in our community so they know they are in a safe space.
4. About ten years ago, someone close to our family died by suicide because they were being bullied, because they were a member of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. This broke my heart because I could not understand that this person did not know they were loved by so many people and my heart broke even more that people would bully someone else because of who they loved. I want to do everything possible that this does not happen ever again.
Love is Love and you should be able to love whoever you want.
I consider myself an ally and I want to work with the community to ensure everyone feels safe in our town. With that being said, I want to treat everyone with love, kindness and respect. To do this, I am teaching my children that we need to accept everyone and show them, love, kindness and respect. This summer I was proud to take my kids to the Drag Queen Story time, and participate in the Find the Flag Scavenger Hunt. I also took my daughter to a family friendly drag show and she loved it. She was so accepting and we had an amazing time.
My daughter’s love for Drag Queens is starting to rub off, as last week we were with another family and another child said ‘Boys can’t wear dresses,’ and my seven year old daughter responded by saying ‘Boys can wear whatever they want,” the other child responded again saying ‘Boys can’t wear dresses!’ and then my daughter said ‘Boys can wear dresses just like Holli Cow, she wears dresses!’ I was so proud of her, I supported her and then reminded them both that we needed to be kind to each other no matter what.
PS: My current favourite TV show is Ru Paul’s Drag Race
2. I've not been aware of hate speech, and there will always be false information. To work and combat this dangerous trend, I would learn more about the community and how those affected feel I can be of assistance.
3. Yes, but you will have also understand, that learning about your community will take time and there are many issues that I will have to follow up on.
I thank you for reaching out to the candidates and giving us something to think about. When one is not involved in certain sections of society, such as your community, or it could be the sporting community, or the historical community, etc., knowing about them will take time to learn.
An unequivocal yes to all three questions. And should I get elected I look forward to discussing these issues with you in person. Thanks for reaching out to me. Joey
Jill, here are my answers, thanks for the questions.
1. As you are aware, (along with several other members of council) I made overtures to change the Town's Resolution #11 and positive strides were made to make amendments to the Town's Resolution #11 which states that the Town will not make any proclamations in support of any groups, days, weeks or months for any organizations. Although our first attempt was unsuccessful, we have not allowed this to deter our efforts. This will be a priority once the new council is formed. A draft flag policy has already been presented to town staff for review. This proposed flag policy is similar to one used in Carleton Place. Staff will hopefully report back soon with their version which can then be voted on by council.
2. I was a huge supporter of getting the Petawawa EDI committee formed and ensuring that it was passed. I'm looking forward to getting the EDI committee staffed with volunteer members and members of council so they can begin providing an avenue for vulnerable and marginalized members of our community to have their voices and concerns heard. We are looking forward to hearing the recommendations brought forward by the EDI committee and incorporating these suggestions into the fabric of our town so that all members of our community feel supported, welcome, safe and free from discrimination.
3. Always open to hearing from all concerned groups in the community. As an educator for 30 years, I worked closely with members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community throughout my career to ensure inclusivity and safe spaces were provided. I would welcome the opportunity to learn more about Pflag Renfrew County and the resources and training they offer. A municipality's goal should be to create a community where everyone feels welcome and everyone feels that they belong.
Thank you for reaching out on behalf of Arnprior Pride and providing the opportunity to engage with you directly. I am aware of the important work Arnprior Pride has been doing within our community and want to recognize the local impact of your combined efforts.
Please allow me to introduce myself, my name is Leslie Anne Hook. I relocated to Arnprior from Ottawa in 2015 with my husband David and our two children Brandon and Emma. I work in the social-impact field, supporting community organizations and helping individuals with lived experience find ways to connect and share their knowledge. My passion is human rights and social justice, I have been studying as a mature student at Carleton University and have a deep commitment to continued learning. When I don’t have an answer to something, I’m the first to admit it and will always take a consultative approach to leadership, relying on subject matter experts to help guide my decisions when needed.
I’m running for town council because now is the time to embrace new voices and ideas that will move Arnprior forward with many important decisions expected of council next term that will shape the future landscape of our town 10, 20, 30 years from now. Many residents I’ve spoken with feel that their voices don’t matter and have completely disengaged with our current leadership. It is my belief that a progressive new council will unite our town and restore trust that has been lost. My vision for Arnprior is rooted in compassion, collaboration and opportunity. Unfortunately, that vision isn’t a current reality for many of our residents and I hope to lead some important conversations at the decision-making table in the coming months if elected, that breakdown local barriers and foster a sense of belonging where no one gets left behind.
This conversation isn’t about me though, it is about Arnprior Pride and your desire to build more active and transparent partnerships with incoming councillors. I would be happy to learn more about Arnprior Pride’s local initiatives and can offer an enhanced level of communication with a personal commitment to compassionate, thoughtful responses to any of your future inquiries. My commitment is to play an active role in the local advancement of diversity and inclusion with a community-led, government supported approach. We need our local leadership to be approachable and willing to engage with all residents and organizations, not just some. I will be making it a top priority to spend time at community-uniting events and help our local non-profits advance their mission to serve our community. One simple way I can help would be to volunteer more with local organizations including Arnprior Pride. I hope to create a dedicated calendar of local participation in 2023 events and would welcome an invitation from your organization regardless of the election results.
I am also very mission aligned with the desire to make Arnprior a safer community for all residents, this includes LGBTQ youth and adults. I personally think knowledge-sharing is the key to building safer and empowered communities. Since my personal approach to relationship building often revolves around creativity, I think it might be a neat idea to partner with local artists to create an awareness campaign that introduces the community to Arnprior Pride through art. Also, having a background in grassroots fundraising, I would be happy to share some ideas with you just as an engaged community member should you find that helpful and point you in the right direction in terms of municipal grants that are available.
In closing, I want to acknowledge your question directly regarding the installment of the trans flag crosswalk that was originally proposed to council alongside the rainbow crosswalk. It is my understanding that the recommendation to council was to support both crosswalks at the same time but that didn’t happen and only the rainbow sidewalk was installed. I welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss the impact this decision had on your organization and what it would mean to the Arnprior Pride Community to have a trans crosswalk installed. As a member of our community not currently serving on council, I do not have the full background as to why we arrived at this decision as to me it is in stark contrast to John Steckly’s recommendation that council should support and approve both crosswalks. I personally do not see any reason to object to this request.
My hope is that you will be able to see some immediate benefits and positive change that comes with the next council. I want to be part of the positive shift and you can expect me to always address your concerns in a compassionate and proactive manner. Thank you for the opportunity to share my thoughts with you. I hope to serve the Arnprior community during the 2022-2026 term.
Have a wonderful weekend,
Leslie Anne Hook
Arnprior Town Council
Good afternoon and thank you for this email.
Public safety and health is the number one reason I live in the town of Renfrew.
Do I believe that painting concrete is a good idea? No, but simply because it chips and flakes and is a huge maintenance cost.
Do I think that the town of Renfrew could have a flag pole with the rainbow flag, that flies daily at the front door of the Town Hall? Yes, because when I see a rainbow flag, it reminds me that “It is OK to love everybody!”.
A good Mayor will promote inclusion and protection for everyone including those who can’t speak for themselves.
This is a message that I would bring to any council meeting and to every school and facility where the Mayor will be asked to speak.
It is great that Renfrew has a solid mix of people that work together for the betterment of all. That is what keeps me living and working in Renfrew and that is what attracts others.
For over 50 years in my barbershop I have served everyone equally regardless of gender, nationality or education level. This will continue.
Thank you for your continuing excellence. You have the voice of love and that is what we need to share.
Candidate for Mayor of the Town of Renfrew
1. Would you support a rainbow sidewalk in Renfrew, the first of its kind in Canada?
Yes, I would support it.
2. How can the Town of Renfrew work with us to promote and expand the annual Pride events to attract even more participants from Renfrew and across Renfrew County?
Use social media, town website and its library.
3. Do you have any other ideas or comments about how we can create a safe and inclusive community for LGBTQ youth and adults?
I feel like Renfrew is safe and inclusive for all. I firmly believe everyone should respect each other.