Bill 47, Protecting Human Rights in an Emergency Act (Emergency Power Generators), 2023
In May of 2022 and September of 2018, Ottawa West-Nepean was hit by debilitating severe weather events. For people living in apartment buildings what followed both times was absolute horror. People lost power and water for more than ten days. In many buildings no backup power generator had been installed leaving elevators, water pumps, and emergency lighting inoperable. People with mobility issues, people with disabilities, the elderly, and parents of young children were stranded in their apartments without any clean water, the ability to leave their apartments for support, for food, or for medical assistance.
Eventually, in the most recent storm after 7 days, the Ottawa Fire Department arrived to fill bathtubs with water to allow toilets to be flushed. This year, I proposed a solution in Bill 47. Residents of apartment buildings need to know that no matter what disruptions severe weather events bring they will be kept safe and have their homes turned into a prison.
Follow this link for more information about Bill 47.
This Bill was inspired by Dr. Lynn Ashdown who spoke to the City of Ottawa in support of my legislation to address this serious and potentially deadly situation.
I want to thank Dr. Lynn Ashdown for her courage and her advocacy. We will continue in this fight until we make access to fundamental necessities during emergencies a reality for everyone in this province.
In February, Lynn spoke advocated for Bill 47 and told her story before the city of Ottawa’s Emergency Preparedness and Protective Services Committee.
The City of Toronto already has a voluntary standard for backup power generators in multi-unit residential buildings. On February 7, 2023, Councillor Chris Moise (Ward 13) moved a motion in support of Bill 47. This motion was adopted without amendments.
Similarly, Ottawa City Councillor Sean Devine (Ward 9) moved a motion before the City that was moved to Ottawa’s Emergency Preparedness Committee. This acknowledge, inspired by the 2018 tornado and 2022 derecho was acknowledged by the City of Ottawa.
More Information and Media
This Bill was inspired by Dr. Lynn Ashdown who spoke to the City of Ottawa’s in support of my legislation to address this serious and potentially deadly situation.
Many news outlets covered this issue. Here are just a few of them:
There is a serious need for the provincial government to act. As the climate crisis worsens, apartment and condominium buildings will face increased disruptions like we saw in 2022 with the derecho. Please lend your voice, and your advocacy to help protect the human rights of all people living in multi-unit high rises and sign my petition.