Lots of people turnout to hear about future and challenges in Ward 3
A packed house turned out to All Saints' Anglican Church on Wednesday to hear about what's happening in Windsor's Ward 3.
Ward 3 councillor Renaldo Agostino, Mayor Drew Dilkens and members of City administration were on hand to update residents on what's working and what needs to change.
Wednesday night's meeting was the seventh of ten ward meetings that are being held across the city until the end of November.
Security and making downtown safe was first topic of discussion.
Perception and reality, along with things like the Project Green Light pilot, the Red Frogs initiative, and future changes to 3-1-1 to better address the needs of those dealing with mental illness and homelessness which Agostino says will be starting shortly.
Other parts of the discussion including working on something for vacant land owners with other municipalities to activate empty spaces, building more homes, reducing red tape, closing drug houses.
More events downtown, along with utilizing empty spaces, traffic calming, and alley lighting were mentioned as solutions to some of the problems that downtown faces.
During the question and answer session, one woman in attendance spoke positively about the Downtown Mission and the work they do to help those dealing with issues in the area,
"I became homeless when I went to Brampton and I came back to the city. And they took me in, and I was there for two months until I got my housing. So I'm here tonight to say I love them, and I'm going to do everything I have to do," she said.
She says mental illness is a real problem impacting so many, and like was discussed at various points during the meeting, more help is needed to deal with that issue.
"The problem is they're not able to stay in housing because they have a mental illness, and they're lonely, they need to have people to be able to support them with all of. That's one of the topics tonight that is very important, but I'm here to vouch tonight that I'm for the Downtown Mission."
Another woman spoke about the Jackson Park bandshell, hoping to see something done with it.
She mentioned how she routinely drops off food and clothing to those less fortunate, and that during her 78 years in downtown Windsor she hasn't been afraid to walk around.
"I can go out at 4 a.m. in the morning and it doesn't bother me. The people that have made a home behind my fence, I didn't appreciate it, but it somewhere they had a place to go. Because each one of us are just this far from being without a home," she said.
During the meeting, Agostino also shared a new initiative that will be introduced soon: a good neighbour policy.
It's going to involve the Downtown Mission first, along with businesses who share mutual goals.
The next ward meeting will focus on Ward 6, which is represented by councillor Jo-Anne Gignac, and it will be held on Wednesday, November 22, at 6:30 p.m. at the WFCU Centre.
Councillor Agostino and part of the crowd on Wednesday night