Pandemic Update: Making the Case For

Universal Basic Income (UBI) NOW!

Saturday, March 21, 2020 

I am writing this post because I am seriously concerned for myself, my neighbours and struggling Canadians across Canada. I am not endorsing one political party over another. I am non-partisan. To be honest, I haven’t been impressed by any of our political leaders in a very long time. Desperate times call for desperate measures and I am using what small following I have here to encourage you to take action and demand real financial help. I think a Universal Basic Income is our best bet right now. If we could get this in place, I think we could really set the stage to come out on the other side of this pandemic a much better society. A society that cares for each other and our environment and truly operates sustainably. Please read my case below, check out the links I included and share the crap out of it. Thank you! Stay healthy.
— Solita
I am watching in horror as this pandemic unfolds. I am frustrated at how inadequate the Federal Government’s financial package is. So many schools and businesses have closed without any idea when they’ll reopen, employees have been layed off in droves and self-employment earnings have completely dried up. Our economic engine has almost completely grinded to a halt and no financial certainty in sight. It’s becoming woefully clear how little we have invested in people, especially healthcare. We don’t have even close to enough capacity to deal with the number of patients that will need ICU let alone current existing health needs. Our leaders fully expect that a majority of us will get the virus but in order to space it out so we don’t overwhelm our system, we will need to endure months maybe years of isolation, not just weeks. We need to put in place a long term plan. We will not be able to resume the same lifestyle after this is done.
Financial aid can’t come soon enough. The current Federal government’s proposal includes a series of supposedly fast tracked EI applications, emergency fund applications, tax deferrals and limited employee subsidies. None of these measures will provide help soon enough for the more than 50% of Canadians living paycheque to paycheque. Some will not even be available to apply for these funds until April. Worse, how will these applications be processed in a timely, efficient manner to make a difference? There will be millions. How will families pay for rent, mortgages, utilities or food in the interim? What about those who don’t meet the criteria but still need aid? How can we help citizens stay safe and healthy without financial security?
We can ensure security with a universal basic income. It’s easy to implement. Every Canadian adult who has filed a tax return would automatically be sent enough income to cover basic necessities such as food and shelter. Every adult would be sent the same amount to streamline the efficiency of distributing the aid as quickly as possible. The UBI would be accounted for on the next year’s tax return. Higher income earners would pay it back in taxes. Lower income earners would get to keep the income. Still think this isn’t fair? Consider this. People can’t spend money they don’t have. The money will go directly to those that need it most instead of big business that has already proved that the ‘trickle down effect’ does not work. The Federal government will see returns right away through the GST. Citizens will not have to worry about paying rent or mortgages. Small businesses could remain open and continue to sell goods. Citizens will have money to spend. We’ve proven that we can operate in the digital world. We can help set up new systems to keep us secure yet isolated until a vaccine is produced. Then those new systems can be used to help us rebuild a better way to live here in Canada. 
Still worried the ultra rich will receive the UBI? A UBI could be distributed based on 2018 tax returns, those earning above a certain amount would receive nothing. Worried that our government will not be able pay for it? Tax the wealthy and use the proceeds to cover the costs. The Canadian Government could also re-nationalize the most lucrative private corporations, especially utility companies, and use the capital and earnings to support Canadians? All provincial governments should be asking how to support UBI. This is our country, our citizens, our friends, families and co-workers. We need to look after each other. We can make things better for everyone and a universal basic income can do this. Please demand this from our government. These are people we elected to make decisions in our best interest. We don’t have time for greed. Further measures need to include a moratorium on evictions and debt payment referrals for the short term while we get a new standard in place. Our economic system is already broken. Now is our chance to build a new system that will work for everyone. 
We’re all in this together.
More information:

Pandemic Update

Monday, March 16, 2020 


How To Support Local During This Pandemic

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 I want to make sure I do my part to prioritize your health and that of our entire community. I am open for business and continue to offer a welcoming and safe place for shoppers. I am paying close attention to news updates from Alberta Health Services and will continue to follow all recommended sanitary protocols. I am committed to ensuring that everyone stays safe and healthy while visiting my shop. That said, I have put in place a few new temporary rules and protocols:

• Please don’t visit my shop if you are feeling unwell, even if it just feels like a cold. Everyone’s health is far more important than gift shopping.
• When in my shop, please just look and do not touch anything. I am happy to offer assistance.
• I am temporarily closing the coffee bar but bulk beans will still be available for purchase.
• The children’s play area will be closed.
• Nude Market bulk items will still be available but self-serve will be temporarily prohibited. I will be available for assistance. Alternatively, order direct fromNude Market and pick-up pre-filled orders at my front door.
• For local pick-ups, a shelf for your orders will be setup at my front door in an attempt to limit physical contact even further.

Traffic to my shop is very slow and I appreciate your patronage now more than ever. If you are healthy, come support my small, local business and help keep our community thriving. If you are sick or self isolating shop online. Shop now and save the shipping by picking up at my shop when you’re better OR if you live in the inner city, I am happy to personally deliver your order on my cargo bike! I may need to distance my self socially but I can still ride my bike and get some exercise. Are you ordering from another Victoria Park business? Let me know. I will pick up those orders too and deliver with orders from my shop. For example, order bread from my next door neighbour Manuel Latruwe or chocolate from Cococo Chocolatiers or a prescription from Shoppers Drug Martor wine from 5 Vines or pie from the The Beltliner  (check out full list of Victoria Park business here: and then make an order from my shop, choose local pick-up and leave a note with instructions at check-out. I will deliver anywhere within 5 kilometres of my shop. I’ve never done this before so please forgive me for any glitches that may arise while I attempt to add a ‘made during a pandemic’ delivery service. Can’t find what your looking for online. Feel free to give me a call at the shop during regular business hours and I will arrange for your order over the phone. In the meantime, I’ll be working on getting more of my products online. Visit often for updates and be sure to check out my new blog, Sustainable Living. Find my blog in the main menu of my website.

As the world economy starts shutting down to flatten the pandemic curve, we’re starting to see just how connected we really are. I find this strangely comforting. Just know that you’re not alone. We’ll get through this together. Thank you for your continued support.

Stay Healthy!

— Solita

(Fantastic outdoor photo above by: 10 Cent Studio)

Calgary Unplugged

Earth Hour Celebrations (Cancelled)

Saturday, March 28, 2020 | 7:00 pm to 9:30 pm

On March 28, 2020, you can take a stand by sitting in the dark. Join millions of other people around the world by turning off your lights and electronics to mark Earth Hour between 8:30 and 9:30 pm. Or go out and spend a fun off-the-grid evening with lots of other Calgarians.

Calgary Unplugged is a free community event at Confluence Plaza on St. Patrick’s Island. This fun and FREE evening event will be powered by bicycle-created electricity. You’ll find kids’ activities like button making and lip balm making. The evening will culminate in a glow stick and LED-lantern walking parade at 8:30 pm to celebrate Earth Hour. Plus, there will be FREE hot chocolate and fire pits.

For those pedalling to the event, Reworks is hosting a Bicycle Brewery Tour leaving from the island at 8:00 pm. We’ll visit three local micro-breweries ending at Two House Brewing in Sunalta. More details coming soon.

Mad Max Ride YYC (Postponed)

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Save the date! More details coming soon!

The MAD MAX RIDE YYC is a FREE family friendly bike parade rolling through downtown Calgary. All modes of non-motorized active transport are welcome to enter (bicycles, roller blades, skateboards, strollers, wheel chairs). There will be prizes for best costumes and best decorated wheels including a prize for best family costume. The ride is a fun event that not only supports art, music and costume but also showcases alternative active transportation options all while engaging a wide range of community members in our city. This year, we are planning to also host an off-grid after party with entirely pedal powered music, including local food, beverages and a zero-waste market.