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Rally for Toronto -- today!

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Residents from across Toronto will be rallying en masse today at 5:30 p.m., in front of Nathan Phillips Square. Their message to Toronto City Hall, Mayor Rob Ford and his right-wing councillor allies: Build Toronto, don't destroy it; together, we can stop cuts, closures, privatization and user fees that will have an impact on every neighbourhood in Toronto.

What's at stake?

- Services and programs that serve every resident and community, such as libraries, child care and recreation centres
- Good jobs that strengthen our communities
- TTC connecting all our neighbourhoods
- Environmental leadership for the future of our city
- Keeping public control of public services
- Safeguarding vital public assets such as housing and Toronto Hydro

Why September 26?

On September 26, City Council will meet to discuss the Core Services Review and the 2012 budget. Hundreds of Torontonians will gather in Council Chambers that day as major decisions are made at City Hall. These decisions will affect our entire city and its future.

Isn't the city broke? How can we afford to keep everything?

This budget crisis should not have happened when we had a surplus from the previous year. The deficit financial figure of $774 million is exaggerated and does not properly take into account the financial benefits of revenue-generating city services. This crisis was created in order to justify drastic cost-cutting and privatization. The real agenda is to shrink city services. We are also the only municipality that froze property taxes in 2011. Other municipalities also get funding from provincial and federal governments to offset costs of their services. However, our mayor has said that he will not lobby other levels of government for any new funding.

I'm coming to the rally. What else can I do to support?

You can call or email your councillor and ask them to support public services and good jobs in Toronto. Call 311 to get in touch with your councillor. Encourage your friends and neighbours in Toronto to also contact their councillor.

Email [email protected] to connect with local initiatives in your area. Join us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/RespectToronto.

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