Candidate Profile: Mitzie Hunter

Mitzie Hunter is a veteran Liberal politician with a “broad set of experiences.” In 2013 she won election to Queen’s Park representing Scarborough-Guildwood. A year later she became associate minister of finance responsible for the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan. In 2016, she became minister of education and then minister of advanced education and skills development.

Hunter then was deputy leader of the Ontario Liberals, but on May 10 forfeited that post to run for mayor of Toronto. “I want to build a city for everyone, everywhere,” Hunter said.

Hunter’s campaign centres around affordable housing and transit with an environmentally conscious approach. As mayor, Hunter said she would create the Toronto Affordable Housing Corporation (TAHC), unlocking city-owned land to build both rentals and equity (purchasable) housing.

Along the 1,200 kilometres of “major streets,” in Toronto, Hunter wants to build affordable housing in heavily populated areas. Housing TAHC builds would be priced at 77 per cent average market rent, which “will give people much-needed access to housing.”

These residential towers would be capped at 20 storeys, and come with green spaces, parks and solar panels. Housing developments would include public libraries and healthcare centres such as pre-natal and breastfeeding clinics.

To improve transit safety, Hunter’s five-point plan would include more police presence on the TTC, hiring social workers to assist and relocate homeless people living in the system, community ambassadors for local subway stations (volunteers who can raise issues and make suggestions) and installing sliding glass doors at subway stations to keep people off the tracks.
Hunter said she would not raise TTC fares, and eventually reverse the current TTC fare price ($3.35 using cash, $3.30 using presto card) to attract riders. She will work to eliminate double payments between TTC and GO systems, and make transit free for seniors and disabled people.

Hunter is also planning a North York Scarborough Subway extension connecting Line 4 to the Scarborough Subway Extension and to Sheppard West and McCowan. “We want to make sure people can get around our city and get where they need to go, and it will also save on our environment because people won’t have to drive.”

Hunter has said she will never use the strong powers the province granted Toronto’s mayor last year. “I strongly believe in local democracy. You don’t want to diminish the voice of the voters.”

Contact: [email protected]