March 18, 2009
In this issue:
Over the past week I’ve been to a number of events celebrating International Women’s Day which was March 8th. I attended events with my fellow colleagues Michelle Simson, MP Scarborough Southwest and Sophia Aggelonitis, MPP Hamilton Mountain. I was also honoured to receive an award from the Women’s Intercultural Network at the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir for my commitment to publicly funded education. Many thanks to all involved in putting these events together—although we have come a long way, there is still work to do both in our own communities and around the world to ensure that women and girls have the opportunities they need and deserve to flourish.
This past weekend I had the privilege of attending both the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation and Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association Annual General Meetings. These meetings are a great opportunity for me to connect with individual teachers and support workers, hear their stories and for me to thank them and all their members for the work that they do every day in classrooms across the province.
Last night I attended a fabulous celebration of Nowrooz—the ancient Persian celebration of spring. Nowrooz is also celebrated by Afghans, Kurds, Azeri’s, Armenians, Tajik’s across around the world. More than 10,000 people gathered at Mel Lastman Square in the early warmth of spring to enjoy music, companionship and fireworks!
Some of the gathered politicians of Irish background—including me—also joined in and marked St. Patrick’s Day at the same time and yes, it’s true, we sang “Oh Danny Boy” and “When Irish Eyes are Shining”—a truly diverse Toronto event.
I hope that everyone who is able is having a fine March Break. I have seen some of you over the past few days as I make my way around the riding—and the weather is co-operating.
Don’t forget: I’m hosting a free Community Family Skate tomorrow -- Thursday, March 19th from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at the Flemingdon Arena (165 Grenoble Drive). Skates will be available on a limited basis.
Enjoy the rest of this lovely week!
All the best,