Ward 2 Councillor

Cameron Kroetsch

It was a busy summer at City Hall. Many City staff and members of Council used vacation time, so Standing Committee and Council meetings were compressed into a single week in each of July and August.

July saw public meetings on the proposed encampment protocol, the kickoff of the Biodiversity in Action series in the North End, and the launch of the Ward 2 Community Grants program. August saw the conclusion of this year’s James Street North art crawl pilot, ratification of the new encampment protocol, the advancement of new bylaws to protect renters from renovictions, and the approval of a site for the Hamilton Alliance for Tiny Shelters (HATS) site on Strachan Street.

The approval of the HATS site by City Council has generated a lot of discussion in the North End, Ward 2, and across the city. Many have contacted the Ward 2 Team to express their support for the HATS pilot but we’ve also received feedback from nearby neighbours expressing concerns about the choice of the location. We’ve also unfortunately received some serious threats from a few Hamiltonians who have told us that if the pilot is set up in the North End they’ll not only harm encampment residents but engage in an ongoing campaign of harassment against them to force them out.

As Ward 2 City Councillor, I will not tolerate threats of physical violence or harassment. Violence is not the answer and the North Enders I know would never condone it. Now that Council has ratified the site location, let’s work together to make this 2 year pilot a success. There will be ongoing meetings to discuss the pilot and a liaison committee set up so that neighbours will always have an open line of communication with HATS.

I have heard, loud and clear, what nearby neighbours are concerned about. I have also heard, many times, from Hamiltonians who are frustrated with the lack of progress the City is making on housing. As many of you know, the City has been left to manage a crisis that was perpetuated by generations of neglect on the part of the Provincial and Federal governments. I will continue to do everything I can to advance the City’s housing programs, strategies, and goals.

In other news, plans are still being made for a fall date to plant trees along the east end of Strachan Street and at Jackie Washington Park but that date hasn’t been confirmed yet. I will likely have more information, including a date, in time for the August edition of the Ward 2 Newsletter.

If you’d like to connect in person, our fourth Ward 2 Neighbourhood Town Hall will be held in the Durand neighbourhood at the Central Presbyterian Church on Thursday, September 14. It will start with the Durand Neighbourhood Association AGM at 6:00pm followed by the town hall at 7:00pm. This year’s North End Town Hall will take place on Tuesday, November 14 at 7:00pm and I will provide more information about the location when I’ve confirmed it.

If you need anything from the Ward 2 Team, please reach out to us anytime at Ward2@hamilton.ca or through our office phone number at (905) 546-2197. We’re in the office Monday through Saturday and are happy to continue to serve the North End community.