Item - 2019.GL1.9

Tracking Status

GL1.9 - City of Toronto's Clothing Drop Box Review

Decision Type:
ACTION
Status:
Amended
Wards:
All

Committee Decision

The General Government and Licensing Committee:

 

1.  Directed the Executive Director, Municipal Licensing and Standards, to accelerate the review of Municipal Code Chapter 395, Clothing Drop Boxes, and bring this item forward to the General Government and Licensing Committee meeting on May 21, 2019, and explore the following four areas:

 

a.  Options on how to improve the safety of clothing drop boxes;

 

b.  Methods other than drop boxes that are used to collect clothing donations and the effectiveness of each option;

 

c.  Review of the rules that guide where drop boxes are permitted to be located; and

 

d.  Review the enforcement of clothing drop boxes, particularly those that are illegally placed and without permits.

Origin

(January 8, 2019) Letter from Mayor John Tory

Summary

I am writing to you today as Chair of the General Government and Licensing Committee to ask that you add an item to your meeting on Monday, January 14, 2019.

 

As I'm sure you are aware, a woman died tragically overnight in the Bloorcourt Village area in a clothing donation bin - this is the eighth such death across Canada.

 

While the police investigation into this incident is ongoing, the City of Toronto does license clothing drop boxes - all clothing drop boxes placed on private or public property must display a permit - so I believe we must take action now. I believe the municipal government has a duty to make sure proper rules are in place to make sure the drop boxes in our City are safe.

 

I understand that the City's Municipal Licensing and Standards Division is currently undertaking a review of the Clothing Drop Box By-law, but that the report isn't expected until September 2019.

 

Therefore, I would ask that the Committee direct staff to speed up this review immediately with the goal of reporting back as soon as possible on any changes that are necessary to the City's existing rules to keep people safe and instruct staff to take any immediate actions needed, during the course of the review, to increase safety around these bins.

 

I would hope that review will focus on three questions:

 

1.  Most importantly, are these boxes safe to have in our community and what can be done to ensure a similar incident doesn't happen again?

 

2.  Recognizing that many of these boxes help charities and help re-use clothing rather than these items being tossed in landfills, is this the best way to collect clothing in 2019?

 

3.  Is there a better way to guide the locations of these boxes?

 

Thank you and the Committee for acting quickly on this matter.

Background Information

(January 8, 2019) Letter from Mayor John Tory on City of Toronto's Clothing Drop Box Review
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2019/gl/bgrd/backgroundfile-123433.pdf

Communications

(January 11, 2019) E-mail from Simon Langer, Diabetes Canada (GL.New.GL1.09.01)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2019/gl/comm/communicationfile-88647.pdf
(January 14, 2019) E-mail from Alan Burke, East Beach Community Association (GL.New.GL1.09.02)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2019/gl/comm/communicationfile-88685.pdf
(January 10, 2019) Letter from Councillor Ana Bail„o, Ward 9 - Davenport (GL.New.GL1.09.03)
https://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2019/gl/comm/communicationfile-88705.pdf

Speakers

Simon Langer, Diabetes Canada
Scott Ebenhardt, Diabetes Canada

Motions

1 - Motion to Add New Business at Committee moved by Councillor Stephen Holyday (Carried)

2 - Motion to Amend Item moved by Councillor Paul Ainslie (Carried)

That the Executive Director, Municipal Licensing and Standards, be directed to accelerate the review of Municipal Code Chapter 395, Clothing Drop Boxes, and bring this item forward to the General Government and Licensing Committee meeting on May 21, 2019, and explore the following four areas:

 

a.  Options on how to improve the safety of clothing drop boxes;

 

b.  Methods other than drop boxes that are used to collect clothing donations and the effectiveness of each option;

 

c.  Review of the rules that guide where drop boxes are permitted to be located; and

 

d.  Review the enforcement of clothing drop boxes, particularly those that are illegally placed and without permits.

Source: Toronto City Clerk at www.toronto.ca/council