KANATA NORTH NEWS Marianne Wilkinson Councillor, Kanata North TRANSIT STRIKE

Last week I represented the City at a Celebration of World Religion Day. Representatives from many world religions, Buddhists, Sikhs, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Baha’I, met together and showed how it is possible to have different religions work together to serve a common purpose. That’s what needs to be done to resolve the transit strike. Residents are working together to provide help to those with difficulty getting around the city but there are still more needing assistance and that will continue until the strike is resolved. We need to have the union agree to meaningful negotiation discussions with the federal mediators and the City. Last Friday the mediator ended the informal discussions between the union and the City saying that they were making no headway. The union has made no move on their demands while adding items to the discussion on the last day. The City has moderated its stance several times since the strike began. The union has again stated that the monetary issues should be sent to arbitration but that leaves out scheduling (including safety standards). Council met the next day (Saturday) and passed a motion, in public, stating that federal safety standards, that limit driving in a day to 14 hours, a minimum of 8 hours between shifts and at least one day off every 2 weeks, must be included. We also gave confidential direction to our negotiating team of professionals (no Council member, including the Mayor, is on the team) on items that could be discussed with the union. I am hopeful that, by the time you receive this paper, that we will be at or nearing a settlement. When the strike ends and service resumes please be polite to your drivers. They provide a very important service and any harassment will only create friction on the bus without serving any purpose. Just be thankful that service resumes and welcome them back.

SAFETY ON OUR STREETS
Last week two disturbing incidents occurred in Kanata North. In one case a 17year-old girl was inappropriately touched by a male. In the other two young boys were followed by a male in a dark coloured van. It is important that you remind your children to be aware of any unusual incidents and if a stranger approaches them in a threatening way have them report it immediately to an adult. In these two cases police were immediately notified. If you have any information on these

incidents, contact the Ottawa Police Sexual Assault/Child Abuse Unit at 613-2361222, ext. 5944 or phone Crime Stoppers at 613-233-8477.

YOUNG AT ART 2009
Young at Art was initiated by the Kanata Civic Art Galley 12 years ago and now highlights the work of young artists, aged 13 to19 from across Ottawa. Works selected from Kanata students will be on display at the Kanata Gallery in the Mlacak Centre and award winners celebrated at a public gathering. All forms of art can be submitted. Application forms are available at secondary schools, Ottawa public libraries or online at ottawa.ca/arts. The deadline for submissions is Friday, Mar. 6, 2009 at 4 pm.

COMING EVENTS
Feb. 5 – 9:30am, Community & Protective Services Committee, Report on Kanata North Recreation Complex coming to Committee for Discussion Feb. 10 – 7-8:30pm, Jackie Holtzman speaks at the Canadian Federation of University Women Kanata meeting, Holy Redeemer Church, 44 Rothesay Dr. Feb. 12 – 7-9pm, Kanata Environmental Network meeting, Holy Trinity Catholic High School Feb. 23 – 7-9pm, Ward Council featuring designs for March Road and the Carling/Herzberg intersection, Kanata Seniors’ Centre Program Room

Serving the residents and businesses in Kanata North
To receive the Kanata North Newsletter, to deal with a concern or make a suggestion contact me at 613-580-2474, email Marianne.Wilkinson@ottawa.ca or through www.mariannewilkinson.com.