AcitivatED’s WARD 11 STATEMENT
ActivatED has completed our analysis for most of the candidates in Ward 11. According to our research, we have found most candidates in the Ward to not align with ActivatED’s vision for a better Edmonton, as articulated by our six-point progressive definition. Our concerns with some of the candidates in the Ward have been threefold: fiscal conservatism with regards to financing of infrastructure projects, positions on development that support urban sprawl, and a lack of knowledge regarding equity.
ActivatED would like to give an Honourable Mention to Ward 11 candidate Sonia Bitar.
Edmontonians may be familiar with Sonia Bitar from her time served as an Edmonton Citizenship Judge from 2005 – 2012. Her work as a judge demonstrated her ability to facilitate an increased intercultural understanding within Edmonton, and her commitment to building an integrated society free of the barriers that race, ethnicity and religion may bring. She has advocated for refugees and other vulnerable populations seeking a better life in Canada.
Sonia has demonstrated these same values and strengths as a front-line worker of the nonprofit industry. Sonia has worked for the nonprofit organization Changing Together: A Centre for Immigrant Women for almost 15 years, serving as Executive Director from 1994 to 2005. Not only did Sonia act as a true champion for immigrant women and the specific challenges they faced, she also continues to serve as a role model for both new immigrant women and individuals seeking to make a difference in the nonprofit sector. The current Board Chair of the Centre, Karen Sigurdson, describes Sonia to have “boundless energy” and to be a “formidable force” in her efforts to support immigrant women, particularly in the face of the challenges of the nonprofit world. At a recent event held by Changing Together, many immigrant women came forward to tell their stories of their time in Canada. It was truly remarkable to hear again and again, the impact that Sonia has had on each woman she dealt with at the Centre.
ActivatED believes that a voice like Sonia Bitar’s, that would advocate for some of Edmonton’s most vulnerable and underrepresented populations would be an incredible asset, if not crucial to have at the City Council decision making table.
ActivatED has been denied a policy interview with Sonia Bitar, but we believe her professional and community work are still noteworthy for an honorable mention. We encourage members of the public to contact Sonia Bitar’s campaign to inquire about her policy positions.
For more information on Sonia Bitar: