Publications, opinions, and speeches

Opinion

Welcome Mayor-Elect Rob Ford

Published on 15/11/2010

Congratulations to Rob Ford on becoming Toronto’s 64th mayor.

As he and the other candidates will know from ten long months of campaigning, Toronto is a complicated and vibrant city, with many actors and many dramas.

There are a number of highly engaged organizations and people working at making Toronto prosperous and equitable. Organizations like Maytree and The Metcalf Foundation, the United Way and the Toronto Community Foundation, and the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance each work to carry the city onwards and upwards. Corporations are deeply engaged in the community with financial support, like TD Bank’s support of the Institute on Municipal Finance and Governance and environmental initiatives or RBC’s engagement in facilitating immigrants integrating into the labour market by its support of the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council. Corporations also help provide a critical analytical lens on the region, through such things as the work of TD Research. In addition to the work of such organizations, there are active citizens in every part of the city working to make their neighbourhoods ever better places to live and raise families.

All of this activity is aided immensely by a friendly and supportive Mayor’s office and city council. Over its three decades, Maytree’s work has flourished when it has been aligned with the interests of a mayor or councillor. And we have always been happy to be helpful to our political leaders when their work and intentions have aligned with ours. Our view is that nobody wins when our political leaders fail, so we should offer support to them as they work to build prosperity and equity, the fundamental bases of city building.

Of course the city does not belong to its political leaders alone. It belongs to all of us, and we all can play a role in city building. While an alignment with city hall is an advantage, it is not a necessary condition. In a dynamic city, many actors will continue to play many roles on many stages. This is the fact of life in cities, which must always be in motion and always striving, lest they fall back.

Mayor-elect Ford will know that there are many hands extended to help him succeed in the vital job of city building.

Summary

We offer support to our political leaders as they work to build prosperity and equity, the fundamental bases of city-building.

Topic(s)

Cities and communities, Civic engagement