In the two years that our paper has been in publication, we have received many letters in response to our writers’ and columnists’ articles.
These include critiques on development issues affecting both Leaside and Bennington Heights, such as the construction of the LRT, condomium buildings, and the creation of large shopping centres. We’ve been accused of not taking stands on issues, most notably on the proposed development for Brentcliffe and Eglinton.
Your feedback has made me think it would be a good idea to talk a bit about what we think we’re doing with this monthly paper.
Our goal each month is to bring you a lively paper for, about, and by Leasiders. From the beginning, we’ve published a column from our local councillor, John Parker, and one by Carol Burtin Fripp, on behalf of the Leaside Property Owners’ Association. Other pieces have run the gamut from covering local political meetings, to writing about long-time friends, all with a Leaside/Bennington focus. We have opinion pieces, and others that are “just the facts”. We’re fortunate to have skilled local writers to do this. We’re delivering to 8,500 addresses, to people with a broad range of interests. We want you to read us, whether you’ve lived here “forever,” or moved in a month ago.
You’ll notice, however, that we never print editorials. We do not take a stance on any local issue. We do have columnists who take particular positions and we believe that through them we are giving you responsible viewpoints and information.
We’re trying something new this month – a pro and con arrangement between two of our writers, Will Ashworth and Geoff Kettel. You’ll know if you’ve been a long-time reader that these two often see things with a different perspective. We let them choose the topic, and then left them to it.
In our Letters section, we occasionally probe issues raised in a more in-depth way, but again, we do not espouse a particular position.
Retaining an objective stance is especially important when it comes to local politics. This year’s municipal election takes place on Oct. 27, and we want to assure you that we won’t be endorsing any particular candidate.
Our ward covers Leaside/Bennington, but also Thorncliffe, Flemingdon and Wynford/Concorde, so it’s entirely possible that there will be credible candidates from communities other than Leaside wishing to be our representative for the next four years. As you know, nominations have been open since January. So far no one has come forward wishing to represent Ward 26, either as a councillor or school board trustee, as of our deadline. But there are 26 names on the list of nominated candidates for mayor.
We will continue to publish our sitting Ward 26 Councillor John Parker’s monthly column. He has a unique perspective on the happenings at Toronto City Hall that affect us in Leaside.
As a general principle, however, we will not publish any material that contains blatant electioneering.