Ever since I can remember I've heard the comment that there is "no difference" between Canadians and Americans. I respectfully beg to differ as there is a difference on so many levels! We have unique Canadian culture consisting of Canadianisms, a Canadian perspective on world events, Canadian cuisine as well as products and foods only available in Canada. This blog is dedicated to celebrating all things Canadian from "my perspective" as a Canadian. Please enjoy your visit and be sure to visit often.

Garden Gnome
Americans should never underestimate the constant pressure on Canada which the mere presence of the United States has produced. We're different people from you and we're different people because of you. Living next to you is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant. No matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast, if I can call it that, one is effected by every twitch and grunt. It should not therefore be expected that this kind of nation, this Canada, should project itself as a mirror image of the United States.
- Pierre Trudeau

Friday, November 12, 2010

Windsor, Ontario Balks at Urban Chickens Proposal

There has been a growing movement across North America to allow residents to keep a small number of chickens in their urban backyards.  I blogged about the great backyard chicken debate a few months ago.  Backyard chickens make a lot of sense as more Canadians face hunger and food insecurity.  As a result more and more municipalities are faced with the decision whether to allow backyard chickens and if so what restrictions to put into place.  In order to allow, disallow or place restrictions on backyard chickens each municipality must pass a bylaw.  This can take a bit of time as passing a bylaw must follow the proper channels before it can come into effect.

Residents of Windsor, Ontario have hit a snag with the possibility of having backyard chickens because city council has simply refused to set up a committee to study the issue.  "Council decided at its Monday meeting to defer the matter indefinitely"1.  Councillor Drew Dikens when asked said "In reality here there were a handful of people who thought that having chickens running around the backyard of homes in Windsor was an [excellent] idea. However, I felt that having our administration spend time on building a bylaw and enforcing a bylaw in this regard was just clucking ridiculous."  Steve Green is the resident behind the backyard chicken movement in Windsor.  He did not attend the council meeting because he was led to believe Council would be establishing a committee to study the issue.

What really happened here is Windsor City Council was able to put off the issue of backyard chickens indefinitely because there was not representation from the backyard chicken movement in Windsor.  The system is set up so that residents can have a say in those municipal decisions that affect them but only if they attend council meetings to make their voice heard.  Had Steve Green attended the council meeting armed with a bit of community support via other residents in person and a signed petition as well as a bit of well thought out documentation supporting the feasibility of backyard chickens in Windsor, the Council would have been forced to deal with the issue. 


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