Mary Fragedakis, Liberal Party candidate for Toronto-Danforth, answers three questions from Beach Metro Community News regarding the June 2 provincial election.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: Candidates were instructed to keep their answers to approximately 200 words, and some of the responses have been edited to keep them as close as possible to the agreed word count.)
QUESTION 1: Please tell our readers a little bit about yourself and why you are running in this election?
I have lived in Toronto-Danforth all my life. I went to school here, bought my own home here, and owned and operated my small business here.
As City Councillor for eight years, I advocated for better transit, including the two-hour Presto transfer, and worked hard on programs to assist seniors and youth. I served on the Boards of the TTC, Toronto Public Library, Art Gallery of Ontario, and other critical community organizations. Now, as the Executive Director of GreekTown on the Danforth BIA, I have continued to support and strengthen small business.
In short, I have spent my career fighting for the people of Toronto-Danforth. It’s what I love, for the people that I care about.
I want to be your next Liberal MPP because I would be proud to continue my work on your behalf at Queen’s Park. As a life-long progressive, I have always fought for fast and accessible transit, affordable housing, better health care, more supports for small businesses and responsible government. Toronto-Danforth deserves better than a Doug Ford government that doesn’t understand what people, small businesses and communities are going through, and won’t act to solve the real problems we face.
QUESTION 2: What do you think is the issue in your riding that you can have the most impact on if you are elected MPP?
I am the best candidate to lead the recovery and growth of our small businesses and community infrastructure neglected by the Ford government and damaged in the pandemic.
As the Executive Director for the GreekTown on the Danforth BIA, I have been in the thick of this, by your side. I have fought to protect jobs and keep our main streets vibrant, organized pop-up vaccine clinics, and advocated for better transit.
I’ve very proud of the Ontario Liberal platform, which you can read at ontarioliberal.ca. If we make the right choices, Toronto-Danforth and Ontario will grow. Ontario Liberals will remove the HST from more meals; revolutionize senior care through a universal home care guarantee; clear the surgery backlog for all of us; repair and rebuild schools; ensure 10 paid sick days for all workers; ban handguns; and more.
I know that Toronto-Danforth residents want to grow here. We want a government that believes in education and invests in it, instead of cutting services and leaving our children with nothing but a bad Wi-Fi connection. We want a government that cares about the environment and climate change, and won’t cut deals to pave over our wetlands and roll back environmental protections.
QUESTION 3: Given the concerns raised by a number of East Toronto residents, do you think changes need to be made to the way the provincial transit agency Metrolinx is run and if so, what are those changes?
As a Toronto City Councillor for eight years, and former Board Member of the Toronto Transit Commission, I understand transit.
I have been in tough negotiations and have the experience and knowledge to keep Metrolinx on track and demand better, more responsive community consultation and adjustments. We need stronger leadership at the MPP level to provide real oversight of Metrolinx. Our current representative has not provided that leadership—the real anger and hurt in the community over failed consultations and plans that no one agrees on is proof of that.