|Number of Polls
|Mike O'Shaughnessy (incumbent)
Old Kildonan lies in Winnipeg’s north end and is made up of several areas, including Garden City, Riverbend, The Maples, and Amber Trails.
The ward extends to the Perimeter Highway and the junction of Mollard Street and Brookside Boulevard (north), the Red River (east), the Perimeter Highway and Inkster (west), and the Winnipeg Beach CP Rail line (south).
Mike O’Shaughnessy has represented the ward in council since 1986.
The ward is made up of mostly single-family households with an average income of $59,043. Sixty-six per cent of the ward is employed, mostly in manufacturing. After English, Tagalog is the most widely spoken language, followed by Ukrainian and Punjabi.
Ward profile by Carie Willson, a journalism major in the Creative Communications
program at Red River College.
Ross Eadie believes he’s the man to deliver fresh ideas and ensure Old Kildonan and city hall are dynamic and inclusive.
"I really enjoy doing this kind of work," says Eadie. "Our campaign is a new vision for Old Kildonan."
A husband and father of two, Eadie is a school trustee for the Seven Oaks School Division, where he’s sat on several committees. It’s a position he ran for to gain more political experience in 2002, but it’s not his first foray into politics.
A Winnipeg Labour Council endorsed candidate, Eadie ran unsuccessfully for city council in 1998 in Old Kildonan and for the NDP in the 1999 provincial election. He’s also been official agent and campaign manager for several NDP campaigns. Eadie’s grown politically since that time, saying it was a good experience, but he was naive about the difficulty of running a campaign.
Blind since 1984, Eadie has worked as a disabled rights advocate and, under former mayor Bill Norrie, he sat on the city’s access committee.
Eadie sees transportation, transit and crime as the main issues in Old Kildonan. He says residential streets are under large traffic pressure and were never meant to be as busy as they are. Regional streets must be completed before houses are built.
Transit is another problem, and it’s difficult to get a fast bus to the University of Manitoba, says Eadie. While a university bus is available to take students to the southern campus, it runs earlier in the morning, a time most students don’t have classes.
Eadie also sees "pockets of crime that are getting out of hand in areas of the Maples." Poor lighting, transient housing and community policing contribute to the problem. He says, with such a large area to cover, community policing can’t do everything.
"If you don’t know who your neighbours are, you don’t know who’s hanging around."
Eadie says he enjoys meeting residents, but his biggest challenge is getting to all the doors. Beating an incumbent in a civic election is a very big challenge, he says.
"It’s never easy to beat an incumbent, but we’re confident we can do it."
Related link: Ross Eadie website
Candidate profile by Carie Willson, a journalism
major in the Creative Communications program at Red River College.
Casey Jones is no stranger to city hall – he’s worked for the city for 26 years and is currently a solid waste department foreman. His job provides him with an inside view of how city hall works and the changes that need to be made.
"My job has opened my eyes to a lot of things," says 48-year-old Jones. "My years of working for the city will help me immensely to get through the infrastructure of trying to get different departments working together."
Born and raised in Winnipeg, Jones and his family have lived in Old Kildonan for 15 years. While Jones has no political experience, he says politics has been a dream for years, growing stronger as he dealt with city hall’s inner workings.
Jones describes himself as "raw as can be, but as passionate as ever…I’m a citizen who loves his city dearly."
Jones sees bike paths, crime and road infrastructure as the most important issues facing Old Kildonan. He says his ward is close enough to downtown that more people would ride their bikes to work if roads were more bike-friendly.
Jones believes in community police officers and says more officers are needed on the street. Foot patrols will help combat crime and provide residents with someone they can talk to about problems they’ve observed.
Most of the road infrastructure budget is spent in the south end of Winnipeg, says Jones. He feels more needs to be done about the roads in the north end. There is a need for better thoroughfares in Old Kildonan and side streets are deteriorating because of added traffic.
Jones says his biggest challenge is getting people excited about the election, and says he’s spoken to residents who don’t vote because they feel nothing changes.
"If you’re not happy, you have to vote for change."
Jones is optimistic about his chances in this election, feeling residents want a change and the race is closer than people think.
"There are going to be tough decisions ahead for the new incoming council," says Jones. "I have the drive and intensity to push for issues seen redundant by other people."
Related link: Casey Jones website
Candidate profile by Carie Willson, a journalism major in the Creative
Communications program at Red River College.
Carl Osato has been running the show at St. Vital Centre’s Famous Players theatre for seven years. As manager, he’s used to listening to the needs and concerns of his clients. The 31-year-old says he’s ready to give back to Old Kildonan, the community where he was raised.
"I grew up there, that’s my home," says Osato. "You get older, and you start paying more attention to what’s going on in your world."
Osato graduated from Maples Collegiate, before graduating from Red River College’s Business Administration diploma program in 1999. The candidate says he will spend at least one weekend per month volunteering at a community centre or event in his ward.
Commitment to community events and listening to constituents are on the top of his agenda, items he feels the incumbent is overlooking.
"I can create change. I can be in the community where the current councillor cannot. Those issues need to be addressed, people have concerns," he says.
While Osato has no political experience, he’s passionate about serving his constituents.
"People run off of name recognition rather than performance. It’s extremely hard to unseat an incumbent, but we’ve seen that before," he says with an optimistic smile.
Crime is a hot topic. He says the recent addition of the Winnipeg Police Service’s Operation Clean Sweep, a proactive approach to policing high-risk areas, is an excellent concept, and it needs to stay funded.
"Why is crime being seen as an election issue? The criminals don’t take the summer off," says Osato. "The safety of our citizens, can you really put a price-tag on them?"
Osato will also organize neighbourhood watch programs to help prevent crime.
Another important issue in his platform is clean neighbourhoods. Osato would organize and participate in cleanups in the spring and fall, removing garbage from public areas and green spaces.
"It’s important to create that sense of community spirit within the area," he says with enthusiasm.
If elected, Osato says he’ll make himself available to his constituents via a customized website with his contact information and a community events schedule, in addition to maintaining an office in the ward.
Related link: Carl Osato website
Mike O’Shaughnessy, the incumbent in the Old Kildonan ward, says he doesn’t tolerate lazy people at city hall. That’s what motivated him to successfully run for councillor in 1974.
"I was a city hall reporter for the Winnipeg Free Press. The guy who represented my ward slept through the entire thing," says O’Shaughnessy.
O’Shaughnessy held his position for six years, at which time he decided to take a break from politics, and start a medical supply company. Before city hall, he worked as a reporter and editor for the Winnipeg Free Press, the Brandon Sun and the Moose Jaw Times-Herald. But politics is in his blood, and he couldn’t ignore his true calling.
"I missed it. That’s why I came back in 1986," he says of his passion for politics.
And that’s where he’s been ever since. O’Shaughnessy claims he has what it takes to lead his ward and make the decisions which serve the best interests of his constituents.
"I have the experience and ability to move the city in the right direction. I stand for financial responsibility without cutting back on services. I can make the best use of the taxpayers’ money without waste, and I know how to get things done, which isn’t easy in a multi-layered bureaucratic system like ours."
O’Shaughnessy, 59, was brought up in the Old Kildonan neighbourhood where he lives.
He has a long history of participating in the development of community facilities in his ward, such as the Maples Arena, the Garden City Soccer Complex and the Red River Community Centre.
O’Shaughnessy is proud of his accomplishments at city hall. He was the first chairman of Winnipeg’s historic building committee. He’s also chaired a committee that helped reorganize assessment procedures and he chaired the first task force on housing, which still exists today.
Police resources are important to O’Shaughnessy, and he says he supports the hiring of more officers to patrol the streets of Winnipeg, but does not support the concept of installing security cameras in public places.
In his leisure time, O’Shaughnessy enjoys golf and walking. He’s also known to enjoy a good game of bridge.
Related link: Mike O'Shaughnessy website