Justin Van Dette talks to Tory and Wynne

Longtime local activist faces friendly fire at roast in his honour

Justin Van Dette is a staple of community activism in East York. He’s been a behind-the-scenes political operative for several local politicians. He’s the omnipresent community relations manager for the Michael Garron Hospital Foundation (formerly the Toronto East General foundation). He’s a tireless advocate for East York, most recently rallying residents for better TTC service at a December protest and then advocating for an East York “Hall of Fame” at the February meeting of the Kinsmen club. Columnist Joe Warmington of the Toronto Sun affectionately refers to him as “The Shaker,” for the way he likes to rattle cages.

Todmorden Legion event honours legendary member

Angie Gualtieri holds a book in her hands. Tales of Todmorden Veterans by Jack Aldred. It’s obvious this book means a lot to her.

Gualtieri recalls when the roof at her Royal Canadian Legion Todmorden, Branch 10, needed fixing. The branch couldn’t afford to fix it. Jack Aldred, a well-loved member of the branch, stepped up. Proceeds from Aldred’s helped raise money for the roof repairs.

“That’s who (Jack) was,” Gualtieri said. “A great man.”

Girl with stockings being manhandled

Leaving the game: sex trafficking in Toronto

When an 11-year-old Toronto girl went missing for four days in September 2016, it was assumed that she was just another child runaway. However, the reality is that the Toronto elementary school student — who we’ll call Emily, to protect her identity — didn’t simply go missing: she had been sold by an older friend into the Toronto sex trafficking circuit, known as “The Game”. This case is not uncommon. Last year, Toronto police rescued 60 victims from sex trafficking, and officers assume countless others are still being exploited.