This Toronto riding has an immigrant population of 59 per cent, which
is the third highest in Ontario. It boasts large Italian, Spanish, South
Asian and Southeast Asian communities, with the largest percentage of
Spanish speakers and Vietnamese speakers in the province.
The borders for this riding run from Steeles Avenue in the north to
Highway 401 in the south. In the west it begins at the Humber River,
and stretches to Dufferin and Jane streets in the east.
The riding includes bungalows and two-story dwellings alongside high-rises,
many of them public housing. The riding has the lowest average family
income and second highest level of those with less than a Grade 9 education.
In the 1999 redistribution, the new York West added 31 per cent of
of the old Downsview riding to the whole of Yorkview.
In the old riding of Yorkview, NDP candidate Fred Young was elected
in 1963, 1967, 1971, 1975 and 1977. It went to Liberals Michael Spensieri
(1981-85) and Claudio Polsinelli (1985-90) before George Mammoliti reclaimed
it for the NDP by defeating Polsinelli in 1990. Mammoliti lost to Liberal
Mario Sergio in 1995.
The former riding of Downsview elected NDP candidate Odoardo Di Santo
for three terms starting in 1975. He was beaten by Liberal Joe Cordiano,
who then ran in the old Lawrence riding in 1987, leaving Liberal Laureano
Leone to win here in that year's election. In 1990, NDP candidate Anthony
Perruzza won Downsview, only to be beaten by Liberal Annamarie Castrilli