2021 Advocacy Forum: Resources

The 2021 Cycle Toronto Advocacy Forum was held over three days, February 3-5, and featured six sessions with a mix of formats, including panel discussions, presentations, and a panel discussion with a breakout discussion. Materials from the sessions are included below. Please click through for more information!

Communicating your Message

How can cycling advocates be effective in sharing their message for safer streets? What are ways to leverage the range of communication mediums available to residents today? Learn how to utilize social media and email to share your message and how to pick the right moment.

Speakers:

  • Jessica Spieker, Friends and Families for Safe Streets
  • Tom Flood, Rovélo Creative
Graphic image shows text and headshots overlaid on top of a photo of bicycle wheels. Text reads: Communicating your Message at the 2021 Advocacy Forum. Headshots are of the two even speakers, Jessica Spieker and Tom Flood

Video Recording

Click to view the video recording of the 'Communicating your Message' session.

List of Questions

Participants asked questions in the chat box of the session. Check this document to see the questions they asked.

How you can get Involved in Cycling Advocacy

This session will introduce new advocates and those curious about cycling advocacy to ways that they can get involved—both with Cycle Toronto and within their own communities. Join Kevin Rupasinghe, Cycle Toronto Campaigns Manager, to learn more about getting involved in cycling advocacy and how you can make an impact in Toronto and your neighbourhood.

Presenter:

  • Kevin Rupasinghe, Cycle Toronto
Graphic image shows text and headshots overlaid on top of a photo of a woman in a hijab speaking. Two other women watch and listen as she speaks. Text reads: Get involved in cycling advocacy at the 2021 Advocacy Forum

Video recording

Click to view the video recording of the 'How you can get Involved in Cycling Advocacy' session.
Header slide of a presentation slide deck. Text reads: How you can get involved in cycling advocacy, February 03, 2021, Kevin Rupasinghe Campaigns Manager. An agenda is also visible.

Presentation Slide Deck

Click to review the slides from the 'How you can get Involved in Cycling Advocacy' session.

List of Questions

Participants asked questions in the chat box of the session. Check this document to see the questions they asked.

Community Leadership

Many residents ride bicycles for different reasons: some for recreation, commuting, exercise, or all three! A big part of Toronto’s cycling advocacy history has included the call for more bike lanes to ensure that people can get around the city safely. Safe cycling infrastructure is essential—and so too is the community you build along the way!

In this session, you will hear from three speakers who are active in their communities and the projects that they are working on to spread the joy of cycling or make Toronto a safer place to walk, cycle, and roll.

Speakers:

  • Christina Hoang, resident and community organizer in Mount Dennis
  • Cassandra Powell, Gyaldem Cycling Collective
  • Najia Zewari, Women's Cycling Network
Graphic image shows text and headshots overlaid on top of a photo of bicycles. Text reads: Community Leadership at the 2021 Advocacy Forum. Headshots are of three speakers, Najia Zewari, Cassandra Powell, and Christina Hoang

Video Recording

Click to view the video recording of the 'Community Leadership' session.

List of Questions

Participants asked questions in the chat box of the session. Check this document to see the questions they asked.

How do Bike Lanes Get Built?

Speakers will answer this commonly-asked question and walk viewers through all the steps that go into building a bike lane in Toronto.

Speakers:

  • Deputy Mayor Ana Bailão, City of Toronto Ward 9 Davenport Councillor
  • Becky Katz, City of Toronto, Cycling and Pedestrian Projects Unit
  • Kanchan Maharaj, City of Toronto, Cycling and Pedestrian Projects Unit
Graphic image shows text and headshots overlaid on top of a photo of construction workers installing the Bloor St E bike lanes. Text reads: How do bike lanes get built? at the 2021 Advocacy Forum. Headshots are of three speakers, Deputy Mayor Ana Bailão,

Video Recording

Click to view the video recording of the 'How do Bike Lanes get Built?' session.
Header slide of a presentation slide deck. A photo shows people cycling at the intersection of Bathurst Street and Adelaide Steet West at a bicycle crossing. Text reads: How bike lanes are built, Cycle Toronto Advocacy Forum, Councillor Bailao, Becky Katz

Presentation Slide Deck

Click to review the slides from the 'How do bike lanes get Built?' session.

List of Questions

Participants asked questions in the chat box of the session. Check this document to see the questions they asked.

Cycling Advocacy and Equity

In June 2020, Cycle Toronto released a Statement and Reflection on Anti-Black Racism, Oppression and Equity to acknowledge that Cycle Toronto “[has] not created safe and inclusive spaces for Black and racialized communities, Indigenous Peoples, and other marginalized groups and have not adequately centred their needs and experiences in the fight for improved cycling access and safer streets.”

Over the past months, the organization has been exploring ways to create a more accountable and inclusive environment for volunteers, staff, and interested individuals. Join us for a panel discussion on the conversations that are shaping our thinking and participate in a breakout discussion to explore concepts of equity, diversity, and inclusion in the cycling community in Toronto.

Speakers:

  • Adrian Currie, Board Vice President of Cycle Toronto and Co-Chair of the Cycle Toronto Advocacy Committee
  • Darnel Harris, Board Member and Executive Director of Our Greenway and member of the Cycle Toronto Advocacy Committee
  • Ashley Quan, Board Member of Cycle Toronto and member of the Cycle Toronto Advocacy Committee
  • Priyanka Vittal, Board Member of Cycle Toronto and member of the Cycle Toronto Advocacy Committee
Graphic image shows text and headshots overlaid on top of a photo of bicycles. Text reads: Cycling Advocacy and Equity at the 2021 Advocacy Forum. Headshots are of four panelists: Adrian Currie, Ashley Quan, Darnel Harris, and Priyanka Vittal.

Video Recording

Click to view the video recording of the 'Cycling Advocacy and Equity' session.
Screenshot of the breakout group discussion prompts Google Doc

Breakout Group Discussion Prompts

In small groups of 4 to 6, event participants were asked to consider one of two discussion prompts and respond.

List of Questions

Participants asked questions in the chat box of the session. Check this document to see the questions they asked.

ActiveTO: Taking Stock and Making it Permanent

ActiveTO launched in 2020 as a pandemic response to encourage residents to get outside and cycle, walk, and roll for recreation, exercise, and travel. The program included temporary bike lanes such as on Huntingwood Drive, Bloor Street East, and Danforth Avenue; major road openings, such as on LakeShore Boulevard and Bayview Avenue; and Quiet Streets across the city. This session discusses how we build on the successes of the program and highlights how we can advocate to make the bike lanes permanent.

Speakers:

  • Christopher McGarrell, founder of ManDem Cycling Club
  • Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam, City Councillor for Ward 13 Toronto-Centre
  • Jason Chau, Scarborough resident and advocate
Graphic image shows text and headshots overlaid on top of a photo of the major road opening on LakeShore Blvd West. People are shown in the distance walking, cycling, and rolling on LakeShore. Text reads: ActiveTO: Taking Stock and Making it Permanent at

Video Recording

Click to view the video recording of the 'ActiveTO: Taking Stock and Making it Permanent' session.

List of Questions

Participants asked questions in the chat box of the session. Check this document to see the questions they asked.

Notes

Not all the questions asked during a session were answered if some were similar to one another, if they were covered in a discussion, or due to time constraints.

Photo credits: background photos by James Sutton (Cycling Advocacy and Equity), Kanchan Maharaj (How do bike lanes get built?), and David Mancini (Community Leadership).

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