JIS News

Mayor of the city of Toronto, David Miller, has called on the two million residents of Toronto to support the relief effort for victims of Hurricane Ivan in the Caribbean.
“Thousands of Torontonians, including City of Toronto staff, have families in the affected areas,” said the Mayor at a press conference held at Toronto City Hall recently. “Many have come into our office to say they still don’t know what has happened to their family. The situation is very serious,” he stated.
The Mayor urged Torontonians to give generously, in cash and kind, noting that the various bank account numbers that had been established and the relief items that were urgently required were listed on the city’s website.
Mayor Miller decided that Toronto should assist after being approached by several Caribbean-born workers including City Councillors Bas Balkissoon and Jamaican-born Michael Thompson. “We have the means and the responsibility to help mitigate this disaster. City staff are mobilizing to offer relief, and I hope all residents will do the same,” added Mayor Miller said.
Vivia Betton and Conrad Gibbs, Consul Generals for Jamaica and Grenada respectively, thanked the Mayor for his initiative. Miss Betton gave an update on how Jamaicans were coping in the aftermath of Hurricane Ivan and how relief efforts were progressing.
Councillor Thompson, who migrated from Montego Bay more than 30 years ago, commended Mayor Miller for coordinating the city’s relief programme and announced that merchants in his constituency would also be donating to the effort.
Councillor Balkissoon thanked the Mayor on behalf of the Caribbean community. “It’s really nice that all our staff have come forward and set up all the facilities.” Donation bins have been set up at the city’s 81 fire stations, five civic centres and at City Hall to collect items, including non-perishable food items, bottled water, water containers, clothing, baby supplies, medical supplies, lanterns, sheets and pillowcases, cots, tarpaulin, plastic sheeting and tents.

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