[We sent five questions concerning green living, local economy and inclusiveness to all of the Election 2017 council candidates. We are posting their unedited responses in the order that they’re received. – Ed.]
What is the biggest challenge your Ward faces? What policy solutions would you seek if elected?
Ward 4’s top issues are all connected to fostering economic development and revitalizing our communities. Ward 4 is an great place to live and it’s time that City Council made it a priority. Northeast Edmonton is ready for more growth, but we need City support to make it happen. I want to make community safety and satisfaction a priority, increase recreational opportunities, and make sure public services such as transit are accessible to all. The way I am choosing to do this is through public consultation with Ward 4 residents. They know what their communities need the most. I want to make sure that we are taking advantage of all potential opportunities so that Ward 4 continues to grow.
How will you help Edmonton become a greener / more environmentally friendly city?
I think generally we are doing great as a city as we move towards more energy efficient/net zero homes and businesses. Our recycling facility is world class and we should be proud of that. The next steps for the city is to push for more new construction utilizing solar panels and green energy. Our priority also needs to be on creating an efficient transit system that people across the city will use to decrease our traffic carbon footprint.
How will you strengthen Edmonton’s local economy and support our city’s independent, locally-owned businesses?
First of all, we need to do our best to source our materials, people and resources from within Edmonton. City Council should make sure it works with local companies whenever possible on major projects. This way we are providing much needed jobs to Edmontonians and prioritize them over non-local workers and businesses. Secondly, we need to help newcomers in Edmonton to create their own businesses through funding. This can be as simple as giving them a break on a business license to put towards other costs. We can also create stronger partnership between the City and organizations that support newcomer business development. We need to make sure they have a chance to thrive in Edmonton, because when they succeed, so does everyone. Finally, we also need to support local artists; we have a lot of talent here. Why are we always outsourcing our art when we have so much talent in our city?
How will you make this a more inclusive city and support Edmonton’s marginalized communities?
I think that this begins by leading by example. A diverse City Council will help empower and inspire others to get involved and do that same. We also need to make sure that current and new advisory committees that influence policy represent all Edmontonians, not just one perspective. It means providing more opportunities to marginalized communities to have a voice and working alongside them to create a better Edmonton.
How can our readers learn more about your platform, contact you with questions or concerns, or get involved in your campaign?
You can find my platform and information about my campaign at http://www.hassanhaymour.ca/ You can reach the campaign at email@example.com