Letters to the Editor

February '22

I appreciated the piece by Kevin Rupasinghe on what Vision Zero is, and how it could make Scarborough Streets safer for everyone – drivers included.

One of the shocking statistics in this article was the number of pedestrian deaths on the streets of Scarborough. I did not know that nearly one-half of the people who died on Toronto’s streets died here in Scarborough.

Kevin Rupasinghe writes that Vision Zero advocates “designing roads that keep cars moving at nonfatal speeds.” I have noticed that the speed limit on most of the major roads in Scarborough has been reduced.

This leads me to wonder why the speed limit on Kingston Road, all the way from Highland Creek to the intersection with Midland Ave., is still set at 60 kilometres per hour? Maybe one of your journalists could investigate this anomaly and report their findings to the Bluffs Monitor community, eh? Surely one of the three Councillors who represent citizens living along this fast and busy street knows why it is an outlier when it comes to Vision Zero.

Yours truly; Allan Baker

30 Bournville Drive Scarborough, M1E 1C5

December '21

Congrats to Bluffs Monitor & one of it’s reporters on the ” Kingston Rd Grand Prix “.
I have tiered (sic) writing to Paul Ainslie of the issue on Kingston Rd.
Thanks to Willie Jose
Hopefully residents and mt neighbours, may have some hope for change after this article circulates.

Rob Burridge

November '21


hi ..

in his nov 2021 article he (Willie Jose) states “despite the 60km/h speed limit, etc”.

i speed (not excessively) because when driving on kingston rd or eglinton or lawrence or ellesmere, if you drive the posted speed limit, 

you get every damn red light. how about doing an article on city speed limit/lights not co-ordinated? it would cut down on speeding for 

sure.  i would drive the speed limit if the lights were properly matched to traffic speed.  and ad to that, the times you are driving along 

and come to a red light with no pedestrians or cars crossing or waiting to cross. these are why motorists are pissed and speed.

thanks, bill.    


May '21


On page 2, “War of Words: Opinion”, by Heather Hunter, paragraph three it reads in part: “Dr. De Villa calmly and simply stated, “The more we reduce our distance, the more we reduce transmission”………

Should read: ‘the more we INcrease our transmission’.

Or just what is the accurate quote from Doctor De Villa ?

It seems to me that there is far too much bad or conflicting information in this time of the Covid-19 virus.

Sincerely, Gordon Hogarth

Guildwood Village, Scarborough, Ontario



You are correct.  The accurate quote is ‘Dr. de Villa calmly and simply stated, “The more we reduce our distance, the more we increase transmission”

We apologize  for the error

Sincerely, John Smee, Publisher.

April '21

Dear Bill Blair (MP), Scarborough Southwest, Liberal

I’m calling on you to use your voice in Parliament to ensure Canada acts with the urgent ambition necessary to set us on track to a climate-stable future and a sustainable economy.

Specifically, I urge you to:

– work with parliamentarians from all parties to ensure that Canada’s Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act (Bill C-12) is strengthened and passed before summer. It has been stalled for too long.

– support a strengthened 2030 emissions target of 60 per cent reduction from 2005 levels to align with limiting global heating to 1.5 C.

– encourage implementation of an ambitious, achievable, science-based climate plan that advances intergenerational justice for Indigenous Peoples, workers and communities.

These efforts must be done while upholding Indigenous rights and title. All levels of government must also phase out fossil fuel subsidies, drastically curb coal, oil and gas production and pursue a just and equitable transition to clean energy.

The climate emergency is upon us, but so are the solutions. Let’s set the targets the best available science calls for, establish accountability measures and implement a plan to make sure we hit them.


Wendy Hooker
wendyhooker@rogers.com, M1M 1B9


March '21


As children growing up near Highview Park in Scarborough, we got used to bicycles early on then graduated to local buses, streetcars and subways. The only other regular form of transportation was walking, used daily to attend Birchcliff Heights PS.

So, as it turned out, we were fortunate in the short and long term, getting used to and comfortable with “transit”. We knew how to use it and got used to using it.

We later discovered that the best way to keep roads and highways from getting further congested, with 4% additional use per year is through transit. Transit is pretty much “locked down” in the GTA.

As people move out of Toronto for various reasons, we need to expand the means for people to access all the attributes of the “Big Smoke”. This includes the best such service out there, VIA rail. We need the expansion of routes along the three Ontario lines. The federal government needs to allocate the necessary funding for the return of schedules that were in play prior to 2012. The province needs to allow for the VIA schedules to have priority.

Let’s get on with it!

~  Chris West

Expansion of Active TO

As the weather turns warmer, many folks are looking forward to participating in the great Active TO program, especially along the Danforth. I found it a real pleasure cycling and shopping along this “complete street” last year. It was so vibrant: people were enjoying meals on sidewalk patios and, with the new bike lanes, the roadway felt safe for everyone — walkers, drivers and cyclists alike.

The Danforth Active TO program now terminates at Dawes Road. In 2021, why not extend it into Scarborough? The extension would be popular – a 2020 EKOS poll found 83 per cent of Scarborough residents want the city to do more to protect vulnerable road users, including seniors and kids. More Active TO would mean more road safety and more business for local merchants.

~ Gideon Forman
Climate Change and Transportation Policy Analyst
The David Suzuki Foundation
102 -179 John Street

February '21

I read the article last month’s Buffs Monitor ‘The Great Oxygenation Event’ by Doug Durno. Very informative, how it took millennia for the Earth’s atmosphere to become oxygenated (21%) enough to support human life. Omitted we exhale 16% oxygen. The upper atmosphere is 21% oxygen but fewer molecules of oxygen per cubic meter. Airplane safety instructions ‘If the cabin looses pressure, please put your oxygen mask on yourself first’. That is because you can’t be as effective assisting others if you have a lack of oxygen. In fact, you could go unconscious, before assisting others if you don’t.

Every child instinctively knows we must breathe or die. Adults once every five seconds, children once every three seconds. What child has not been sick in bed with a respiratory problem “Mommy it’s hard to breathe”. It is alarming to be sure. Ditto, children who’ve been winded, from a sudden blow to the chest or stomach, or after exerting oneself too quickly. Children even play dare games like … ‘how long can you hold your breath’ … answer is, not long.

Million’s of laypersons, in North America, especially recently have been instructed to give chest compressions only … often overlooking the need for rescue breaths. It seems this shift in thinking came about as a result of the unwarranted threat of catching AIDs during the administering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Now, unfortunately, chest compressions are the only steps taken to revive those who are found comatose, exhibiting laboured shallow breathing, making gurgling noises and/or turning blue from lack of oxygen.

Fiction as a factual scenario “O my love, my wife, death has sucked the honey of thy breath” … Romeo and Juliet. Juliet took a sleeping potent, she was comatose. When she awoke, she found her love had committed suicide. She then took her own life. It is very important … fact life critical, that we understand the difference between needing assistance with breathing, which rescue breathing is critical, and needing cardio where chest compressions can help. And yes, sometimes breathing is a result of a blockage in the air passageway, so best to check for that as well. But blindly administering chest compressions can actually compromise the patient further, by ignoring the real problem or worse, when chest compressions can complicate the situation further.

Respiratory illnesses (asthma, COPD, …) are on the rise – whether are result of lifestyle or atmospheric pollution. Diabetic comas are also on the rise, typically through bad nutrition and lack of exercise. Opioid and other overdose cases, also on the rise. Similarly, there are many other conditions where rescue breaths should be the priority … not relegated to the dustbin of history. It is time for a return to practices that are truly humane and life saving. The insanity of denying this form of treatment has persistent for too long. Let your local representatives and your public health agencies that you are not happy with this current status quo, lest you and or a loved one, find themselves as the next unfortunate victim of an improper, potentially life altering chest-compressions procedure. Doug mentions high CO2 levels in the atmosphere can have dire consequences ditto our bloodstream, hypercapnia.

Gary Thompson. Toronto,ON.   M1N 1R6



October '20

I think Bret needs to do an article on the ridiculous design of the Express Line painting on Kingston Road. Overkill to be mild. Why could it not have been like the HOV lane painting a solid line to divide from the other lanes and a simple shape of a bus every 3 or 400 yards instead of solid areas the cheapens the whole area ( see East of Guildwood Pkwy ) What authorities and local elected officials approved this design.

Bob White

I’m a retired college Professor and have lived in the Scarborough for about 40 years.

While all levels of government have doing an excellent job of keeping the virus in check.
More needs to be done to stop the spread than we already are doing.

Perhaps rethinking how the initial contact happens and taking steps to minimize the initial exposure is needed.

Here are some relatively recent numbers relating to the City of Toronto and excluding the GTA and GO train service.

1. The current population (a little out of date)
is over 2.7 million people.
2. TTC daily ridership is currently at 880,000
Bus (550,000) and Subway (330,000)
3. People living in Toronto taking public transit daily 1 in 3
4. Number of infected people infected daily in Toronto 300

It is reasonable to assume that about 100 new cases on a daily basis is one of the people on the TTC.
It is also reasonable that anyone riding the TTC can not at all times maintain 2 M for social distancing.

We need to do a better job of protecting ourselves and I am suggesting that If you know you are going to be too close to anyone then you should also wear a face mask.

An alternative that you can do is to attach some plastic (fairly thick and flexible) to the outside of the mask. Hot glue works good. Should act somewhat like a face mask.

Worth a try?
You have nothing to lose.

An alternative? If you use a nice reusable mask is to attach a piece of waterproof fabric.

I have been giving away in my community free samples for people to consider.

Thee are some cautions.
1. This is not a medical grade solution and no clinical trial has been done.
2. You must leave sufficient space to breathe and attach plastic to top and sides only.
3. Do not use for children or anyone with health problems.

Yours in Optimism,
Roy Leslie
Optimist Club of Rouge Valley.


To your editor: I use your paper frequently to sit on on a cement ledge- one of the good things about it. The ads are helpful, too. The rest, waste of paper and ink. Oh, also, you are so cheap that you have the balls to show and advertisement for volunteers to deliver your paper and right below is an advertisement for a Print Media Sales Professional, presumably a paid position. Not enough money left over for the deliverers??? I tell you those volunteers sure are suckers!!!!

Thank you Victor, for taking the time to read our paper and send us your opinion. We are always striving to improve the Bluffs Monitor and thus we appreciate the critique of our readers – both positive and negative. I am glad you find the ads helpful and the paper keeps you clean while sitting on your cement ledge.
In reference to your other comments, I apologize to any volunteer who was offended by the placement of our request. We value our volunteers who generously spend their own time delivering door to door. (As you will discover, most small, community newspapers rely on their volunteers to help deliver in their neighbourhood.

Thank You!! Many thanks to Janet Stokes for organizing one of the most touching and sweetest events this community has experienced in some time. The wonderful tribute to Robert Adams and his fellow comrades was most deserved and reflects well on the community we are fortunate to call home.<br><br>Howard Alexander