Oleksiak speaks out about proposed budget cuts that could mean pool closures
Chris Fox, CP24.com
Published Wednesday, January 11, 2017 10:57AM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, January 11, 2017 10:58AM EST
Teenaged swimming phenom Penny Oleksiak is speaking out about proposed budget cuts that could mean the closure of dozens of Toronto pools.
A list of staff-endorsed service cuts that council could implement in order to fill a $91 million shortfall in the proposed budget for 2017 includes the closure of 12 outdoor pools and 36 wading pools as well as the discontinuing of service at 10 indoor pools.
All told, the cuts could save the city $1.74 million, however it is not clear which pools would be affected.
In a message posted to Twitter on Tuesday, Oleksiak said “it's important to teach kids how to swim,” noting that “it saves lives and is a good physical activity.”
Oleksiak also added the hashtag #saveSHpool, which is a reference to the SH Armstrong Community Centre pool in the Beaches neighbourhood where the Gold-medalist grew up.
In the wake of Oleksiak’s tweet, Mayor Tory took to the social media platform himself and promised to find a way to save the pools slated for closure.
“Gold medal message received, @OleksiakPenny. I've asked Budget Chief Gary Crawford to find a way to save these pools,” he wrote on Wednesday morning.
City council is expected to finalize the budget during a meeting scheduled for Feb 14-15.