Taking Action on the Roots of Youth Violence
Moved by: Councillor Matlow
Seconded by: Councillor Thompson
Each tragic spike in youth violence is followed by task forces and reports with hundreds of ideas on how to respond. Many of these reports have contained recommendations which, if acted upon, would support Toronto’s youth. In 2008, the Province of Ontario published a comprehensive report authored by The Honourable Roy McMurtry and Dr. Alvin Curling. The Review of the Roots of Youth Violence identified a significant role for municipal partners in addressing the roots of youth violence, including poverty, racism, poor neighbourhood design, health issues, lack of youth engagement, and lack of economic opportunities. Unfortunately, the recommendations in the report have only been partly implemented. It is time for serious, meaningful action, not more study.
This motion requests that the City Manager report on the status of joint Provincial-Municipal actions recommended in The Review of the Roots of Youth Violence and Ontario’s Youth Action Plan which followed in 2012. It also requests the City Manager recommend initiatives that the City of Toronto can implement now to address the roots of youth violence.
1. City Council request the City Manager to report to the Community Development and Recreation Committee by June 2013 on the status of joint Provincial-Municipal actions recommended in the reports The Review of the Roots of Youth Violence and Ontario’s Youth Action Plan
2. That the City Manager recommend initiatives that the City of Toronto can implement now to address the identified roots of youth violence including, but not limited to;
i) Establishing a body with the mandate to develop a corporate agenda to develop and publish a specific youth violence strategy with measurable objectives and timelines, and to monitor and report regularly to the public on indicators of progress.
ii) Developing a youth anti-racism plan
iii) Creating community hubs to provide space for meetings, recreation, the arts, and service providers;
iv) Establishing local coordinating bodies to help improve access to services offered in each neighbourhood and to improve coordination amongst them;
v) Implementing programs to familiarize families, including new settlers, with community structures and supports;
vi) Reducing barriers to youth recreation programs;
vii) Increasing resources to tower neighbourhood renewal initiatives;