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Local 79 joins ACORN Canada in raising concerns over tenant security at TCHC

Thousands of TCHC tenants may have recently lost access to the live video feed of their lobby after Rogers Communications changed the wiring system in their buildings – making access to the feeds only available to those who have a Rogers cable package.
Live video feeds are a key security feature for tenants and staff, many of whom are also TCHC tenants. The feeds allow tenants to check on who may be looking to enter the building and provide a reliable safety feature in TCHC communities.
Along with ACORN Canada, Local 79 is asking Rogers Communications and TCHC to find a solution that allows tenants continued access to the live security feeds without a cable subscription.
Read more about the issue on ACORN Canada’s website.
Read Local 79 President Tim Maguire’s letter to President and CEO of Rogers Communications below:


July 20, 2016
Guy Laurence
President and CEO
Rogers Communications
333 Bloor Street East
Toronto, ON M4W 1G9
Dear Mr. Laurence,
RE: Removal of televised “lobby channel” in Toronto Community Housing (TCH) Buildings
CUPE Local 79 is joining the growing number of voices expressing deep concern about changes to Rogers’ infrastructure in TCH buildings that will reduce tenant safety by making the live feed of lobby cameras only available to tenants who purchase Rogers cable.
Local 79 represents over 20,000 workers, including TCH employees. Resident safety and security is a top priority for both tenants and workers. During consultations on the Mayor’s Task Force on TCHC it was identified as one of four areas to be addressed in an organizational action plan. Many TCH workers are also tenants and have expressed deep concern that removing free access to live feed of the lobby reduces their safety at work and at home.
Rogers’ infrastructure upgrades in TCH buildings, which are meant to provide improved cable service, can not come at a cost to individual and community safety. I strongly encourage Rogers to work with TCH to find a solution that would allow tenants continued free access to a designated lobby channel.
Access to the live feed of building lobbies is a valuable and essential feature for tenants, even more so when considering vulnerable residents such as seniors and the disabled. The City has made security in TCH communities a priority, having spent millions of dollars upgrading security cameras and systems, and it will continue to add new infrastructure.
Security should not be a question of which service provider customers choose. Both Rogers and TCH have the power to maintain the security channel feature that has been accessible to all members in TCH communities. That feature should continue to be accessible regardless of residents’ ability to pay for it. Rogers’ actions in this circumstance should reflect its long history of corporate social responsibility and giving back to communities.
Rogers must demonstrate leadership and work with TCH to find a solution that would allow tenants continued free access to a designated channel. Security should be accessible without the necessity of prescribing to a cable service.
Thank you for your consideration of my comments.
Yours truly,
Tim Maguire
 

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