Staff and members of the Canadian CED Network – Manitoba (CCEDNet-MB) called on 2014 municipal election candidates to share their position on policies that support our collective vision of fairer and stronger local economies, reduced poverty, and more sustainable communities. This is Cindy Gilroy's response:
1. Are you in favour of this policy practice? If yes, how will you work to implement a procurement strategy that takes into account the added economic, social and environmental value of purchasing from social enterprises and other businesses that generate community benefit through the inclusion of Community Benefit Clauses in contracts and purchases?
I do support a policy practice that involves a certain percentage of all procurement to be from Social Enterprise. I think we can work with existing social enterprises to insure that catering for events and meetings have to be provided by a social enterprise. We could also mandate a policy where any retrofits or renovation work to city owned buildings has to have a certain percentage done by organizations like BUILD who are not only a social enterprise but are also employing the indigenous community who are the city’s fastest growing and youngest population.
2. Are you in favour of Right to Housing’s proposal that the City of Winnipeg support at least 350 new units of affordable rental housing and 350 new units of social housing over three years? If yes, what City supports will you provide so this target can be achieved?
Yes I favour the proposal! As a Social Planning Council board member affordable housing is one of the priorities that we have as an organization. I support all mechanisms outlined by the Right to Housing organization including tax increment financing, a moratorium on condo conversions when vacancy rates are below a certain percentage and zoning incentives to encourage the building of affordable housing. I will also work in tandem with our new Mayor to develop a new relationship with the Province to work collaboratively to get an affordable housing plan in place for the city. I will also advocate to the Federal government to implement a national housing strategy to build a comprehensive co-operative strategy not only for Winnipeg but for the entire nation.
3. Are you in favour of a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy for Winnipeg with targets and timelines? If yes, how will you partner with community-based organizations and other key stakeholders to create and implement one?
Poverty reduction or should I say poverty eradication is possible and I see this as part of my responsibility as the city councillor to create a more equitable society. I will work with indigenous, community development, newcomer organizations, and social service organizations to develop a comprehensive strategy to eliminate poverty. I will support food security through community gardens and food share programs. I will support the building of more social housing; I will work with community organizations that are working everyday on the eradication of poverty.