Point Douglas ward report
Vivian Santos is city councillor for Point Douglas.
Recent articles of Vivian Santos
Blue Bird, Lismore parks renewed with new equipment2 minute read Preview Wednesday, Jun. 15, 2022
On June 2, Point Douglas city councillor Vivian Santos, together with Brooklands School principal Rex Ferguson-Baird, students and community residents celebrated the final redevelopment of Blue Bird and Lismore Parks, located in the Brooklands neighbourhood, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the intersection of Lismore Avenue and Oddy Street.
“During the pandemic, we realized that public green spaces and city parks are safe havens where families and neighbours can come together and enjoy being outdoors together safely,” Santos said. “I am very honoured to be able to join the students of Brooklands School and area residents to finally celebrate the redevelopment of these two beautiful neighbourhood parks. This newly developed green space is particularly special as area stakeholders participated in a public engagement back in 2018 and they were instrumental in how the park is defined today.”
“The community has welcomed this renewal project with much enthusiasm. I see families and kids playing here every day, with the addition of the skating rink the space sees even more year-round use,” Ferguson-Baird said. “This is not only a park opening, it is a lesson for our children in being citizens in a democratic society. Two years ago, we hosted the planning of this project, at the school. Student and their families met with community members to dream and co-create the plans for the parks. Last year we celebrated the sod breaking together, and now our students get to see the official opening.”
The focus at Blue Bird park was installation of new play equipment and a two-bay swing set, replacement of existing light poles and fixtures with new LED pole lights. Other features include a new compacted granular path, new site furniture, picnic areas and tree plantings. The approximate cost for this project is $203,667.
How will the city recover from service cuts?3 minute read Preview Friday, Oct. 22, 2021
I have spent most of my council term advocating to divert funds from the increasing operating and wage costs of Winnipeg Police Service, and I am still deeply concerned that our community services and transit budgets continue to face deeper service cuts each year.
That is why I voted against the operating budget for the City of Winnipeg last year. COVID-19 has made these service cuts all the more visible. Just a year ago, the city faced an additional epidemic of trench fever in our homeless population, a disease not seen since soldiers fought in the trenches of the First World War over a century ago.
Almost daily, I receive emails and calls from concerned residents about encampments around their businesses, their homes, and green spaces. The pandemic and the social isolation faced by many has led to increased drug use and overdoses, yet we have seen little structural change to even begin to assist people.
The vulnerable population continues to be forgotten about and left to fend for themselves. They feel abandoned by their government, and feel no need to clean up their garbage or make our community a better place. If you put yourself in their shoes, can you blame them?
Time to make public transit more accessible4 minute read Preview Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021
I first mentioned my support of an affordable or fare-free public transit system in Winnipeg in 2018.
Since I’ve been elected, my council colleagues and I have taken small steps to reducing some of the barriers to public transit. In 2019, council introduced the low-income bus pass and earlier this year we introduced fare-free rides for children 11 and under.
The COVID-19 pandemic has vividly shown the inequalities in our government systems and policies. Motivated by the inequities exacerbated by the pandemic, I want to lead, inspire and work together to create opportunities for a more efficient and equitable Winnipeg. That is why I am motivated to continue my efforts to advocate for an affordable or fare-free public transit system.
Earlier this month, I introduced a motion at the Lord Selkirk-West Kildonan community committee requesting the city’s public administration to begin researching the costs and effects of both an affordable ($1 per ride) or fare-free transit system in Winnipeg.
Collaboration is crucial to our way forward2 minute read Preview Friday, Jan. 15, 2021
If I were to pick a theme for 2021 it would be collaboration. I believe the need for collaboration is critical to build a successful path forward — between citizens, community organizations and all levels of government.
The cracks in our current systems have been exposed as we continue to live through the COVID-19 pandemic. The data indicates that our elder population, Indigenous population, working women and front-line workers continue to suffer at a greater cost through the pandemic.
These ‘unprecedented times’ have put forth an opportunity into our laps to rapidly innovate our systems. We are all interconnected — it’s time our systems and decision-making processes be reflective and inclusive of this, too.
When we listen and come together, it’s proven to work.
Many lessons to be learned from 20205 minute read Preview Monday, Dec. 21, 2020
At the beginning of this year, December 2020 was shaping up to be a big celebratory month.
I’m turning 40 and celebrating my fifth wedding anniversary this month. I had planned to celebrate these milestones with a family trip but now, like everyone else in the country, our original plans have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This holiday season I am very grateful — I feel lucky to have a close multigenerational family, a handful of close friends that I am able to text, Zoom and have phone calls with.
I am also incredibly honoured to be serving in my civic duty during this difficult time. Working to create better opportunities for all to have safe spaces and support systems to live well in Winnipeg has never been more important to me.
Lower speed limits make streets safer4 minute read Preview Monday, Jul. 29, 2019
I am often reminded of the fact that I will be turning 40 years old next year. The older I get, the more I think about the kind of legacy I want to leave behind. I am often reminded of the fact that I will be turning 40 years old next year. The older I get, the more I think about the kind of legacy I want to leave behind.
As I’ve started my second career as a city councillor, I often ponder the question — what can I do to make a difference? For me, the answer I keep coming back to is to make the future of my children, my family and Winnipeggers better and safer.
One of the most pressing issues we face in Winnipeg is that we have children, pedestrians and cyclists being involved in vehicle collisions and some are dying from their injuries.
Every day, I am reminded of the four-year-old girl who was struck by a vehicle and later died of her injuries in the hospital. Every day, I am reminded of when me and previous city councillor Mike Pagtakhan advocated for better safety measures at the pedestrian crosswalk at Isabel Street at Ross Avenue.
Investing in affordable recreation services4 minute read Preview Monday, Apr. 8, 2019
In a time when we are all trying to make our families and kids feel safer, we must ask: what steps do we need to make our communities feel whole again? In a time when we are all trying to make our families and kids feel safer, we must ask: what steps do we need to make our communities feel whole again?
I have two young children and they are so impressionable these days. I can already see them copying my habits, repeating some of my most common sayings and even mimicking my movements. As I watch them grow older, wiser, and begin to understand what is happening around them, I feel the need to be a positive influence in their lives and show them, through my own actions, how to be kind, thoughtful and enthusiastic Winnipeggers.