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Dealing with difficulties

The Town of Morris has dealt with two difficult issues this year involving racism and homophobia. We did and will continue to stand against any form of discrimination in our town. As a community we stand together with diner owner Thea Morris and support her as she feels threatened.

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Thea has told me that she has never received any discriminatory comments from any Morris resident. In fact, she has said she has had a lot of positive comments and support. I could just stop there.

Different groups of people got up and left the restaurant before they were served. Let us think for a moment. Why would people do that?

Most restaurants in town are very successful and are run by minorities and first-generation Canadians. We have a rich tapestry of cuisine in our small community. Thea's food is good but her service is slow. This is not enough to compete in a town that has many ethnically diverse established restaurants with excellent food and excellent service.

For a first-time restaurant owner, it does not help to blame the customer when they don't return. Look internally and improve your competitive edge. But please don't hold the town hostage by saying that you will have to leave if the community does not support you more.

During busy times, Thea is the only cook and she struggles to keep up with orders. This happened at lunch on Thursday when she came out of the kitchen and asked people to have patience while she gets the food out. People were respectful and patient and waited.

I have spoken to Thea and will continue to engage her on ways we can help her make her restaurant successful in a difficult and highly competitive industry.


Mayor of Morris


Fostering economic growth

I write to clarify several points in Reis Pagtakhan's Nov. 28 column, Snap changes to immigration rules unfair. Our government is creating an immigration system that fosters economic growth and is responsive to Canada's labour market.

Our government announced improvements to the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) program, which will continue to attract talented candidates with diverse skill-sets, while maintaining reasonable processing times and prevent backlog.

Even though the CEC is one of the fastest growing economic immigration programs, there are many other avenues newcomers can pursue, should they want to become a part of Canada's labour force. Programs such as the Provincial Nominee Program, Federal Skilled Worker Program and the Start-Up Visa are all successful in positioning newcomers for success in Canada.

Another transformational step that our government is taking is the creation of a program where a pool of the most qualified skilled workers, who are eager for employment, can hit the ground running and contribute to their local economies. Under this new recruitment system, employers will be able to fill labour market shortages when they can't find qualified workers in Canada.


MP, Winnipeg South Centre


Manufactured frenzy

It is sickening to see the brainwashing of the peasants churning and writhing in violent desperation for shopping crumbs outside castle walls. The ongoing broadcasting of the manufactured frenzy is sickening to see when really important matters need exposure.

Enough already. Get back to the business of responsibly informing, not participating in corporate manipulation.

As for American Thanksgiving, there seems to be no time allotted for "thanks" by the masses. Instead, we witness an American tragedy, not a celebration, and I deeply resent that Canadians are being sucked into this vortex of revolting greed through the vehicle of our own media.




Plan better than nothing

I concur with your Nov. 26 editorial Iran deal deserves a chance. As you mention, the deal is not perfect but it offers the opportunity for further mutual agreements to alter the landscape in the Middle East.

If one aims for the perfect deal, nothing is likely to get done. But if Israel has nuclear arms, why isn't there a call for it to place these weapons under international control since it is the main object of Iran's nuclear weapons ambition?

Moreover, President Barack Obama has made it clear that the U.S. has Israel's back. So, in effect, Israel has de facto access to U.S. military might. Rather than trying to include other issues in this agreement, it seems more reasonable to give this initiative a chance to succeed, or fail, and not to pour cold water on it.




Sprucing up the city

I was extremely disappointed to read Aldo Santin's Nov. 20 story City hall blows off Route 90 fence plan. It is the responsibility of civic leadership to ensure all public spaces in our city look as good as possible. I'm flabbergasted the much-talked about Route 90 persists in looking awful, year after year after year.

How can it possibly take so much effort to simply put a few nice plants or a fence along a roadway, whether it's Route 90 or any other part of the city? Why are we still wasting time talking about this after 10 years?

Maybe if this work was done in stages, as one does in one's home, it wouldn't cost $7 million. But, just like in our homes, if you neglect to do anything to the roof or the foundation, it will cost more in the end.




Disconnected from reality

The financial numbers and situation of "Beth and Craig" (Retirement tug-of-war, Nov. 23) are just so disconnected from the Canada I know.

I get that even families earning more than $250,000 a year have retirement worries but that level of income seems like a mirage to me, and to the vast majority of Canadians.

After following all the rules, pursuing education, saving diligently, paying off all debt and working three jobs, our family earns well below the Canadian median income of $70,000 per year.

I am far more interested in financial advice tailored to people like me, instead of families who earn more in one year that I will earn in five.



Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 30, 2013 A16

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