Consider This Northumberland

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Getting ready to announce support for party leadership; Conservative rookie MP Lawrence busy guy

Local Rookie MP Philip Lawrence busy guy during first weeks in House, at home, and in riding. Northumberland-Peterborough South MP Philip Lawrence is on the cusp of announcing who he will support in the upcoming leadership race for the Conservative Party of Canada. While he speaks well of each candidate, he has two with whom he has a special relationship: Erin O’Toole, the MP from Durham, and former MP Peter McKay. MacKay inspired Lawrence as a kid to become involved in politics. In this interview, Lawrence shares his own views on what he is looking for in the next leader of his party. Continue Reading →

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Cramahe mayor vows to take on illegal cannabis grow-ops in township

Cramahe Township is a busy place. With its first major subdivision underway, new additions to municipal staff, and some tensions surrounding cannabis operations, the council has plenty on its plate. That does not include, its 2020 budget, a new strategic plan for the Chamber of Commerce and who knows what else is on the horizons. Mayor Mandy Martin provides a candid assessment of the proposed Sharpshooter cannabis operation, along with her hardened resolve to deal with illegal marijuana grow-ops scattered across the township. The interview is not only about issues. Continue Reading →

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Cobourg police chief calls for all hands on deck to fight drug epidemic

So, for our first show of 2020, it seemed like a good idea to revisit one of the more significant stories in Northumberland: the ongoing battle with drugs across the county. Following a number of key arrests over the past few months, plus a shocking announcement regarding a more deadly form of drug suspected to be in our region, it is appropriate to talk once more about the state of the opioid situation and some of the developing issues that have come forward since July when we began examining what was going on. Certainly, a lot has happened and there is a more vocal public debate taking place since then. Back in July, then Deputy Chief Paul Vandegraff sat in this same chair across from me and we talked about opioids. It was the first of a series of interviews done by Consider This around the emerging situation. Continue Reading →

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Members of the new Ontario Health Team explain impact on health care in Northumberland

Our local health care system is about to go through a seismic transformation. Two weeks ago, the provincial government announced Northumberland was chosen to be one of 24 pilot programs to completely overhaul the way health care is delivered to us. The new model is called an Ontario Health Team. The phrases that keep coming up in all the announcements focus on several keys: collaboration, patient care,  and better navigate the system. All of it with the goal of improving the outcomes and addressing wait times and hallway medicine – the two clichés often associated with the issues facing the overstressed health care system. Continue Reading →

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Concerns over Transition House not NIMBYism, says neighbourhood coalition rep

A group residents and business owners calling themselves the Good Neighbour Coalition Cobourg launched a campaign to address concerns related to Transition House, the only emergency shelter for homeless people in Northumberland County. Since then, the group has made a public presentation to council. And, it has been active in advocating for a resolution to the issues they raise, including increased and recurring problems with public drug use, people sleeping outdoors, verbal abuse and intimidation, disruptions day and night including physical altercations, theft, and break-ins. With me in studio Alyson King, a representative of the group Good Neighbours Coalition Cobourg. Welcome, Alyson. Continue Reading →

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County reaches milestone on path toward affordable housing strategy

Affordable housing has sat at the forefront of many municipal politicians for more than the past year. Since the campaign and election of councils just over a year ago, it is a priority for many. In some cases, there are concrete steps being taken. Meanwhile, in the background, Northumberland County council and staff have toiled away on this issue for nearly a decade, slowly developing the framework and putting into place the pieces of an affordable housing strategy. From the Housing First initiative to a regular homeless people’s survey to an overarching Affordable Housing Strategy, the groundwork was being laid. Continue Reading →

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Local activist commemorates 30th anniversary of Montreal Massacre

Thirty-years ago today at about 5 p.m., Marc Lapine calmly walked into a mechanical engineering class at the Ecole Polytechnique and ordered men and women to stand on opposite sides of the room. The men were told to leave the room. Nine women were left. Lapine told the women he was fighting feminism. Then, he proceeded to shoot them all, killing six women

Lapine left the classroom and wandered the halls, randomly shooting women for the next 20 minutes before turning the gun on himself. Continue Reading →

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How lucky we are hospital cuts are not hitting us…yet, says lobbyist

The complexity of the changes to the healthcare system currently underway within the province, the Ontario Tories are making some serious cuts, along with major retooling. Ontario Health Coalition Executive Director Natalie Mehra was interviewed by Dave Glove and myself on Nov. 26, 2019. Inside this interview are examples of the stark contrast between the macro and micro changes taking place. While major cuts to hospitals elsewhere are taking place, Northumberland Hills Hospital has received about $6 million in the past 18 months from two consecutive governments. Continue Reading →

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Millions needed for waterfront upgrades as Cobourg council moves forward

You might recall back in the spring a proposal was brought forward by the town’s director of culture parks and recreation to move forward on the revitalization of Cobourg’s waterfront – in particular the east pier and the campground at the bottom of Division Street. Council split in its decision to put the proposal on hold until public consultations took place and a deadline of November was given to come back after residents had an opportunity for input. Well, the reports came back and the council is moving forward. And, just to make things a bit more complicated, the Willow Beach Field Naturalists stepped forward earlier this month to propose a Natural Heritage Waterfront Park for the west beach. The person on council responsible for the waterfront is none other than my next guest, Cobourg Councillor Emily Chorley. Continue Reading →

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Transition House seeks dialogue to resolve concerns in neighbourhood, board members say

A group residents and business owners calling themselves the Good Neighbour Coalition Cobourg has started campaign to address concerns related to Transition House, the only emergency shelter for homeless people in Northumberland County. Two of the group’s representatives, Alyson King and Grace Lovekin, appeared before Cobourg council Monday night to make their case. They told councillors since Transition House reopened just over a year ago, “the neighbourhood has experienced increased and recurring problems with public drug use, people sleeping outdoors, verbal abuse and intimidation, disruptions day and night including physical altercations, theft, and break-ins. While Transition House may not be the “cause” of these problems, it is clearly associated with them as the problems did not occur at this level until it reopened”. With me in the studio are Taylor Nelson, a member of the Board of Directors for Transition House and Marsha Jones, chair of the Board of Directors for Transition House. Continue Reading →

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