Prince Rupert Coun. Blair Mirau gained a new outlook on city design policy earlier in November when he attended the Cities Fit for Children Provincial Summit in Vernon.
The summit, which brings together municipal and regional policy-makers, advocates for municipalities in B.C. to encourage child-friendly urban design and initiatives.
“[We explored] jut-out sidewalks to reduce the length of crosswalks and improved sightlines for pedestrians,” said Mirau.
“The theme of the event was how to make municipalities, in general, accessible for children. That was the overarching theme and I know with our budget constraints we’ve got to be very careful not to pick and choose which projects we’re going to cater to … But there is one initiative that’s taking hold across Canada I think we could take a look at and that’s the Children’s Bill of Rights being adopted at the municipal level.”
Mirau explained that the Children’s Bill of Rights would take the City’s child-friendly proclamation introduced in 2009 one step further by enshrining children’s rights in the city’s collective conscience.
“[The bill of rights] makes a great statement – it protects the rights of children who might not otherwise have the opportunity to speak for themselves so that’s something I’m happy to provide the materials for and something we can easily pursue without adversely affecting the budget,” said Mirau.
Success by 6 regional coordinator Kate Toye also attended the conference as did city planner Zeno Krekic.
“I am so thrilled that our city and council are looking at building on the proclamation… creating change that will not only positively effect the children and families in our community, but cities that are fit for children are really cities that people want to live in,” Toye added.