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April 23, 2003
Mayor strikes SARS recovery task force
  
Mayor Mel Lastman today announced the creation of a task force of Councillors
charged with overseeing the City's recovery from the outbreak of Severe Acute
Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).

"This task force will help us co-ordinate with our partners in Queen's Park
and Ottawa and act as a clearing house for all of the different initiatives
that are coming forward," said Lastman. "With today's advisory from the World
Health Organization, it is more important than ever that we have a strategy in
place to deal with the economic impact of SARS."

The task force, chaired by the Mayor, will be made up of Deputy Mayor Case
Ootes, Budget Chief David Shiner, Diversity Advocate Sherene Shaw, Works Chair
Brad Duguid, Planning Chair Gerry Altobello, Community Services Chair Olivia
Chow, Administration Chair Doug Holiday, Economic Development Chair Denzil
Minnan-Wong and Councillor Joe Mihevic, Chair of the Board of Health.

The Mayor said the SARS Recovery Task Force will be instrumental in integrating
private-sector initiatives with City strategies to help Toronto cope with the
economic impact of the disease. Some of those strategies, he said, are already
in place; others will flow out of council and Monday's summit with Asian
business community leaders.

He said yesterday's phone interviews with Prime Minister Jean Chretien and
Premier Ernie Eves went well and that he was assured the support of both
governments when he meets with federal and provincial cabinet ministers in the
weeks ahead.


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