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By: Adam De Costa, Staff Writer

On June 30, 2020, Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown joined us on Justice in PiecesHe explained that although he studied law, his passion was politics and public service. He prefers municipal politics, in comparison with his experiences in Federal and Provincial politics, as he is enjoying the “lack of partisanship.” 

 Covid 19 

He noted that municipalities had to adjust how they operate during the Covid lockdown and this pandemic has been an economic firestorm on businessesHowever, people’s generosity in their willingness to help their neighbour was refreshing and highlighted the Canadian Spirit. 

The City of Brampton was operating online, and their corporate offices are open for appointment based, in-person services. The participation in tele-townhalls has greatly increased public involvement; there have been as much as 10,000 to 15,000 participants. 

 Canada Day Reflection

In reflecting about Canada Day, Mayor Brown shared how Canada is a country where you can succeed if you have the drive and determination. However, he remarked how Canada’s past also has dark chapters, especially how Japanese Canadians were treated during WW2 and how Indigenous people have been treated in itpast and things that could be changedWhile this past haunts Canadians, Canada has turned out to be one of the best countries to live 

 The 2020 Canada Day celebration in Brampton will be spread out with musical events and drive-by floats. However, it will be smaller gatherings compared to previous years. 

Systemic Racism 

Mayor Brown is adamant that Systemic racism exists and to deny that is to have blinders. He mentioned Trustee Kathy McDonald has done inspirational work by hiring a new school board director 

Brampton City Council approved a motion to create a Black, African and Caribbean Social, Cultural and Empowerment & Anti-Black Racism Unit which has a mandate to eradicate Anti-Black racism in Brampton. 

Mental Health Support

Mayor Brown explained that we should not criminalize mental health when addressing situations such as the recent tragedy of Ejaz Choudry. He mentioned that sending mental health support workers would require increased funding. When asked about what could Brampton residents do who are frustrated with this, he said they should, “change the system!”

Mayor Brown’s Words of Wisdom 

Mayor Brown advised students to not let the pandemic affect their mental health to contact family and friends for a chat over zoom/skype, if required to seek professional assistanceHe told students interested in politics to volunteer by join a political party that interests them or municipal politics. 

Mayor Brown told paralegals, they will face hurdles let it strengthen them and increase their drive and determination.