As a person with disability, I am used to things not quite meeting my needs. I recognize and respect that my challenges are minimal compared to those faced by many other people, and I want to listen and work against barriers for everyone.
Marginalized and/or vulnerable citizens need appropriate opportunities to live and work in the mainstream. We have a terrible history of race relations in Nova Scotia, from colonialism, through slavery, to the eventual destruction of Africville. The history of treatment of people with disabilities isn’t much better. If you have a severe physical disability, the only option for receiving government-assisted care is by going into a long-term care facility.
HRM has the opportunity to help Indigenous people with the new Friendship Centre. HRM should give the new centre the same opportunities it gave to the Convention Centre. HRM needs to help stimulate economic opportunities for its marginalized and vulnerable citizens.
As well as affordable housing and preservation of neighbourhoods, HRM should offer public procurement criteria that acknowledges a range of social factors. This means paying a living wage for all contracts, no matter how large or small, and ensuring an appropriate percentage of contracts are awarded to suppliers owned or managed by Indigenous persons, African-Nova Scotians, recent immigrants, and people with disabilities. HRM should establish a permanent advisory committee from marginalized and/or vulnerable communities.
HRM must look to integrate appropriate housing in all neighbourhoods for people with disabilities. No more warehousing! Curb-cuts and snow-clearing are expected but we need to revise transportation policies to increase access to wheelchair-friendly cabs. We also need to review the access-a-bus registration criteria and how it is obtained. HRM may need to consider developing a non-accessible door-to-door service for clientele who need the service, but do not require a bus.
Devolution of some police functions to civilian employees makes sense, but only in accordance with the wishes of the communities they serve. Citizens need meaningful input into and transparency regarding the objectives and accountability of the police force and its budget.
HRM must not forget missing or murdered Indigenous women. We must not let this issue fall out of our attention.
HRM needs a Better Council.
Vote for a Better Council.
Vote for Jen.
Jen Powley is a candidate for councillor in District 7.
Jen has lived with multiple sclerosis throughout her adult life. She knows what it’s like to face challenges and make good things happen. She listens, she thinks, and she acts.
Let’s work together to get Jen elected!
You have the opportunity to be a part of something special.
Help Jen become a Different Voice for Halifax by donating to her campaign.
On October 17th, vote Jen Powley for council.