We are a community of parents, grandparents and families who have come together to tackle the climate emergency by participating in family-friendly activism activities.
We've been effective in getting Ottawa City Council to change city bylaws to allow naturalized boulevards, and to endorse the global Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Happening in September:
Join us for a super fun, family bike ride where our kids are the focus! Kidical Mass - Sunday September 24th at 9:30am. This ride will give kids the freedom to bike on car-free streets and celebrate their independent mobility. Register here. Read Cassie's article about the need for safer streets and car-free alternatives for kids.
Two things happening right now:
We worked to raising aware on the need to ensure the Ottawa bylaw reforms about naturalized boulevards. This was a huge opportunity to protect biodiversity and pollinators in urban settings - if it is done properly. And (spoiler alert) - we did it! We changed the bylaw (celebratory brag blog coming soon!)
4 Family-friendly bike rides happened all summer! For those who love to bike, those who have questions about how to bike with their kids safely, and anyone looking for a fun summer activity. All were welcome! Details here!
Some projects we're working on
- Helping more parents take on their first climate advocacy role, whether that be writing an email to their city councillor, attending a Fridays for the Future demonstration, or talking about climate change to a neighbour - all of that is important.
- Transitioning Ontario diesel school buses to electric. See what For Our Kids is doing to charge forward on electric school buses.
- Helping parents communicate and normalize talking about climate anxiety that we may experience.
- Advocating for Renewable Energy in Ontario. We are working to ensure Ottawa endorses Phasing out Natural Gas Power Plants in Ontario by 2030 and embraces hydro, wind and solar (and the cleaner air and reduced GHGs that come with it.).
- Advocating for a stronger Emissions Cap at the federal level. Sign up for a reminder when the Draft Regulations are available for public consultation.
- Keeping an eye on the Ontario government's ongoing destruction of greenspace and promotion of sprawl (through Ministerial Zoning Orders and fast tracking Highway 413). We formed a collaboration with other groups to Stand for the Land.
And here are some of our past actions:
- Providing a space for parents to discuss, share and vent their climate anxiety and frustration. Our second facilitated discussion was held on Wednesday June 15, 2022.
- Protecting Ontario's Renewable Energy - We made a submission to the IESO (Ontario's Independent Electricity System Operator) during their public consultation to make it clear they knew parents want clean energy, and want Ontario to phase out natural gas powered plants by 2030. Read more about IESO here.
- Strengthening Canada's Net Zero Climate Accountability Plan (Bill C-12) - We sent a submission to the standing committee signed by more than 90 parents.
- Holding the City of Ottawa Accountable on their declaration of a Climate Emergency 2 years ago. We sent Earth Day cards and made virtual messages to bring attention to decisions our council has made that does not put Climate First
- Protecting Ontario's Renewable Energy. We wrote a submission signed by over 140 Ontario residents to remove Schedule 5 from Bill 276 so that renewable energy in Ontario continues to be prioritized.
- Read up about key women of colour who have been leading climate change across the world as part of our Black History Feature. We will also be working on a submission to ensure Bill 230, Canada's plan for evaluating Environmental Racism becomes law.
- We worked with groups across Canada as part of the January Day of Action to hold our banks accountable and tell them they need to stop investing in new fossil fuel projects. This is an ongoing project, so if you still haven't contacted your bank, do it this week!
If you see any actions you would like to learn more about, or if you'd like to get involved, we would love to hear from you. Please email us!
We recommend reading The Parents' Guide to Climate Revolution by Mary DeMocker. Please join us!
For Our Kids Ottawa/Gatineau is a member of the Peoples Official Plan (POP), a coalition of organizations focused on bringing greater urgency and ambition on climate and social justice issues to the implementation of Ottawa’s Official Plan.