Candidate Profile: Anthony Furey

Anthony Furey was a newspaper columnist for the Toronto Sun and radio show host for over ten years. In his time as a journalist he was able to connect with people “all across the city in all walks of life” to understand their needs, likes and dislikes of Toronto. The issues and concerns Furey heard from Torontonians in his profession aligns with the issues he has been advocating for in recent years, he said, reflecting on his Toronto mayoral campaign.

Furey is focusing on both public safety and safety on transit. Recent random attacks around the city, Furey said, are mostly linked to drug usage. He believes Toronto’s current approach to the drug problem is “not going to move us forward.” In response, Furey would redirect funding from current drug treatment centres into new centres focused on involuntary treatment and rehabilitation for people who pose a threat to themselves or others.

Ten years ago, Toronto had 5,443 police officers; in 2022 there were 4,901. If elected, Furey said he would hire 500 new officers to patrol public transit and ensure the safety and comfortability of TTC users. “Something I know people want to see is a greater, visible law enforcement presence.”

These new officers would include TTC special constables, Furey said. There are currently eight to 12 special constables deployed to the TTC at a given time, which Furey said is not enough because it causes extremely long waiting times for customers in need.

Metrolinx’s Ontario Line has closed Queen Street between Bay and Victoria Streets for the next five years. In a downtown core, where “every square metre matters,” Furey plans to utilize any space not used for active construction, aside from construction staging and equipment parking areas, for creative spaces such as D.J. booths, farmers’ markets, and weekend arts festivals. Furey wants to send the signal that the downtown core is still “something vibrant.”

Also regarding Metrolinx, Furey wants to sue Metrolinx for $1-billion for its breach of contract with the Eglinton Crosstown LRT. “We need to stand up for ourselves and make a little noise,” Furey said. He believes this lawsuit would additionally inform Metrolinx that the same behaviour “will not be tolerated” with the Ontario Line construction.

Furey says the lawsuit would not affect provincial taxpayers. He also said he would not bring in any new tax increases, including commercial parking levies and municipal sales taxes, so as to not burden low-income residents.

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