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Saturday, April 21, 2012

April Newsletter

Our April newsletter is now up on our website:

Facilitator's Message for April 2012

Hello folks,

Our year continues to unfold with a radiant plethora of activities, speakers, films and meetings!

One can fill their frequent or all too scheduled spare time with events that are posted in our newsletters, web site and blogs!

Maude will have her 4th visit to London in 8 months on May 30 on her "Great Lakes Tour" at the Aeolian Hall.

Maude loves London, she loves our London Chapter and our hundreds of members and affiliates!

Both Maude and I will love all those that come out to events that much more!

Newsletter content is accumulated throughout each month from our members and Chapter contacts that send me articles and events. I try to get web links so that you can easily access the source documents. Your input and comments are welcome! Postings need to be sent as earliest as possible to get into the next newsletter.

Facilitator's Editorial

Council of Canadians Chapters have a great impact on their local communities when they lobby their City Council, their MP's, MPP's, businesses and citizens.

The following is a basic web link guide for our City of London. These links will provide a basic intro to our Council, how it operates, when they meet, what the committees are and who the "players" are.
Please take an hour to gain basic knowledge then refer back to these links often to learn more about our City of London Council and what is going on in London!

City of London Council
A Guide to Frequently Used Web Links

The City of London Council is formed by the Mayor and 14 Councillors each representing a ward.

City of London Council Meeting Schedule

Standing & Advisory Committees – Who Does What?

Public Participation Meetings

Committees and Task Forces

Meetings – Agendas & Minutes

City of London By-Laws

City of London Zoning By-Laws

See you at our London Chapter events!

Yours from the Council
Don McLeod
London Chapter Facilitator
Council of Canadians

Email:  Don McLeod <>

(519) 667-4016

London Chapter Web:
London Chapter Email:
Chapter Facebook:    
National Web:             
Stop CETA:                 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

LONDON ACTION ALERT: Let’s Keep London out of CETA

LONDON ACTION ALERT: Let’s Keep London out of CETA (Canada-European Union free trade deal)

London city councillors want the City to be taken out of a dangerous trade deal with the European Union and we need to support them!
On April 16, the City of London's Finance and Administrative Services Committee decided it was time to ask the Ontario government to exclude the City from the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Like dozens of municipalities across Canada, including nearby Hamilton, Stratford, Toronto and Mississauga, London councillors don't want their democratic rights to set government policy or make spending decisions unfairly compromised by another corporate rights deal that puts jobs, public services and local democracy at risk.
London council had already passed a CETA motion in October after a presentation from the local Council of Canadians chapter on how CETA would stop the City from buying locally or using "Buy Canadian" policies when spending public money. Councillors on the finance committee this week decided London should strengthen its position on CETA by joining over 33 other municipalities looking to be excluded from the deal.
On May 1, the decision is expected to go to full council for a vote. We need to show London councillors we support their decision, and to vote yes on any motion that asks the province to Take Cities Out of CETA!
We need London residents to call or email their councillors letting them know they support a CETA exemption. Find their phone numbers and emails addresses below, along with a sample message.
CETA is bad news for municipalities. It's not really a trade deal at all. It would be more accurate to say the goal of CETA is to re-write the rules on how governments, including cities like London, set policy on everything from buy local food supports to environmental protection to job creation and development strategies. CETA is all about improving corporate profits by limiting our social and economic options as communities. It threatens our public services, it is estimated to increase the cost of drugs in Canada by $3 billion annually, and it could cost us between 23,000 and 150,000 jobs according to the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
The EU trade deal will also impact how cities provide public services or set local policy. According to CETA documents made public January 18, only existing municipal measures will be protected and then only weakly. Future municipal policy and regulations that do not agree with strong investor guarantees in CETA can be challenged in trade disputes or taken to investment tribunals by corporations. Services provided at the municipal level, such as drinking and wastewater, waste management, public transit, are especially vulnerable to these kinds of trade challenges under CETA.
CETA's not about trade. It's not about prosperity. Like past "free" trade deals, CETA is about empowering the rich and undermining democracy.
Between now and May 1, please call your councillor to let them know you support an exclusion for London and other municipalities from the CETA. We've included some possible talking points below in a sample letter. You can email a version of this letter to your councillor also, but phoning is best. For more talking points, please consult our TAKE ACTION TOOLKIT: TAKE COMMUNITIES OUT OF CETA from the Council of Canadians' System Change website.
For more information on CETA, visit
The London Chapter of the Council of Canadians is part of a dynamic and growing local Stop CETA campaign (website To find out more about the campaign or to get involved, write Contact the London Chapter at (website
I'm calling/writing to you about the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), which you'll be discussing at your May 1 council meeting. I understand you'll be making a decision whether or not to ask the Ontario government to exclude London from the deal in order to protect its spending and decision making powers.
I want you to know I fully support this motion. Cities like London need the freedom to be able to support local jobs and sometimes give a boost to local or regional businesses and industries when and where it makes sense. CETA takes away that option for the benefit of only the largest multinational suppliers and big business.
I am also very concerned that according to CETA documents leaked to the public in January, municipal government policy will not be fully protected from CETA. For example, no provincial government has excluded drinking water and wastewater services from their offers to the EU. Meanwhile, EU member states insisted on protecting the water sector.
Canadian municipalities will be vulnerable to trade and investment challenges by corporations who just want to increase their profits in water services and other municipal services. It doesn't make sense why Ontario would leave London open to challenge like that when the EU wants to protect these areas for its municipalities.
Once again, you have my full support for a total CETA exemption for London. I hope you vote for it on May 1. By doing so, London would join over 33 cities, towns, school boards or associations across Canada, including Hamilton, Stratford, Toronto, Mississauga, Oshawa and the Union of B.C. Municipalities, all hoping to be excluded from this bad deal.
Thank you,

To find out your ward, call City Hall or use the map: All members of city council can be reached by dialing the main number (519-661-2500) and the following extensions after the prompt.
Mayor Joe Fontana ext. 4920
Ward 1 Councillor Bud Polhill ext. 4882
Ward 2 Councillor Bill Armstrong ext. 4943
Ward 3 Councillor Joe Swan ext. 7015
Ward 4 Councillor Steve Orser ext. 7012
Ward 5 Councillor Joni Baechler ext. 2444
Ward 6 Councillor Nancy Branscombe ext. 7014 ph. 519-432-1100
Ward 7 Councillor Matt Brown ext. 4597
Ward 8 Councillor Paul Hubert ext. 7016 cell: 519-851-5062
Ward 9 Councillor Dale Henderson ext. 4880
Ward 10 Councillor Paul Van Meerbergen ext. 1558
Ward 11 Councillor Denise Brown ext. 6505
Ward 12 Councillor Harold Usher ext. 4879
Ward 13 Councillor Judy Bryant ext. 0370 cell: 226-448-8221
Ward 14 Councillor Sandy White ext. 4876 cell: 226-688-9427