The petition that was released by Mr. O’Shaughnessy (savethemarket.com) was not issued or endorsed by the ByWard Market Business Improvement Area (BIA). The business represented by Mr. O’Shaughnessy is not a member of the ByWard Market BIA.

“The BIA prides itself on the ongoing work, support, and relationships we have with social services in the community including the Shepherds of Good Hope, the Salvation Army, and The Mission,” says BIA Executive Director Jasna Jennings.

“We were a founding member of the Downtown Ottawa Coalition for a Safe Community, along with the three community shelters. We regularly forward funds to the local social service providers raised through our charitable events such as Stew Cook-Off, and training and tours are provided by local social service agencies for our Street Ambassadors. However, with all the ongoing community work and efforts, more investment is required for mental health, addictions, and housing issues. As we are approaching election time (provincially and municipally), this creates the perfect opportunity to challenge the running candidates to commit such funding.”

The safety and security of ByWard Market visitors and members is paramount, and the BIA works closely with the community to seek and create solutions. The BIA Safety & Security Committee meets monthly to address current needs and concerns. Members include the Ottawa Police Service, social service providers, Crime Prevention Ottawa, Councillor’s Office, along with business members, residents, and other community stakeholders. Mr. O’Shaughnessy was invited to participate.

The BIA will continue to work collaboratively and proactively with all community partners to ensure a positive experience in the ByWard Market for everyone.