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Brave show of emotion

There was a scene at Monday’s council meeting that touched many hearts in an extraordinary way. The issue was whether council should direct city staff to do a feasibility study for building a “community hub” on city parkland behind Brant Avenue school.
It’s a neighbourhood that “faces a disproportionate number of challenges,” a public health official told council. But what touched hearts was the sight of Brant neighbourhood people describing – in person or in a video screened at the council meeting – their challenges and their hopes for how a community hub could help. One was a single mother from Somalia with eight children. Another  was a woman who told council she suffers from severe social anxiety, and whose courage in managing to speak as a delegation at a council meeting was impressive.
It was such a hard act to follow that council didn’t even debate before okaying the feasibility study. There’s a lot to be studied here, including how to pay for a hub and if it’s a suitable use for parkland. But the hub’s prospects were surely enhanced by this brave show of emotion and need.

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