My connection to this land.
I recognise that my platform and experience are expressed from a specific point of view. I've introduced myself below so you can understand the viewpoint I'm bringing to this campaign.
My ancestors are from Eastern Europe. My immediate family moved here during the Balkan war in the early 1990s and has since established strong roots in the cultural and institutional systems of this settler nation. I have been a part of and benefited from the long colonial history that has resulted in the displacement of Indigenous Peoples and their governments.
My parents, sister, and I immigrated to Canada as a middle-class family, living on the lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples.
For the majority of my youth and adolescence, I was unaware of how much I had benefited from this colonial system. In my adult life, I have lived and studied in large cities such as Toronto, New York, and the Czech Republic. I've examined the governance and policies that allow cities to exist while also creating new oppressive systems for Indigenous Peoples, BIPOC, and People with Disabilities.
I feel that no discussion of city building is complete without a proper and thorough appreciation of the Indigenous Peoples and communities that were here long before Europeans and other settlers arrived and who continue to practise Indigenous laws and traditions on this land. I acknowledge the land that I live on and that my political campaign operates is on the traditional lands of Indigenous People.