A written deputation I submitted for today's Governance Communications and Human Resources Committee meeting
"Item 2H – Annual Review of Board and Committee Charters
After numerous attempts to advocate for the increase in the representation of Tenant Board Members to equal regular Board Members with no appreciable feedback I believe that TCHC (and its primary stakeholder 'the City') may be more comfortable with increasing its official tenant participation within the Tenant Services Committee.
Under the Composition heading for the Tenant Services Committee Charter “The Committee shall be composed of a minimum of four Directors.” Even if two of those seats are occupied by Tenant Board Members they are still more strategically aligned with the “Corporation” than with the tenants.
Seeing as the Tenant Services Committee is designed to have a positive impact on the tenant experience TCHC should open up this arrangement to include more tenants at the committee level. If TCHC wishes to maintain a four “board” member minimum then we should have an equal four “tenant” member minimum.
This would thereby open up the level of communication between both the tenants and this committee. Going from a “tenant deputes and if we feel like it we'll respond” approach to an actual live[ly] back and forth discussion. It may take decades, if ever, to increase the number of tenants allowed to be seated at the “Board” level of Toronto Community Housing Corporation. But, the very nature of the work that the Tenant Services Committee is responsible for indicates there should be more tenants admitted in an official capacity to give feedback on items that impact our day to day lived experience."