As the 2018-2022 term wraps up, it’s important to acknowledge that this term of Council accomplished a number of positive things for residents of Niagara, and we did so in the wake of a global pandemic that none of us could have predicted when we were campaigning in the summer and fall of 2018.

I’m not suggesting there weren’t also some missteps. There were. Overall, I do think that most of us did the best we could with the best interests of our constituents in mind.

Some of the initiatives for which I was directly responsible (i.e., I brought them to Council and at least a majority of Council agreed with me) include the following:

  • the appointment of the Regional Chair by open ballot (i.e., residents would know which Councillors voted for whom to be Regional Chair)
  • improvements to the expense policy and code of conduct
  • joining the Coalition of Inclusive Municipalities, including forming a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Committee and resulting in the development of the first-ever Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Action Plan for Niagara
  • a declaration by Council of racism, homophobia, transphobia, and all other forms of oppression and stigma (including disability, mental health status, socioeconomic status, etc.) as public health issues, including that the social determinants of health would be considered in budget decisions
  • the creation of a Lobbyist Registry to improve transparency
  • beginning the work to develop a Niagara-specific Poverty Reduction Strategy
  • a temporary memorial for those lost during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • a commitment to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

You can read more about the work I’ve done here.

If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me at laura@lauraip.ca.