'COPE Actions and Activities'
COPE Outreach

Some of the ways in which COPE has been fighting to date:
  • Working to ensure that citizens are aware of the proposed highway by sending out flyers, establishing a website, writing to and networking with the media, networking with other organizations and businesses with similar concerns, use of road signs and manning the COPE information booth at many public events.
  • We continue to sign up new members. COPE now represents citizens opposed to this highway in all regions affected by the corridor as well as those not directly affected.
  • Continually lobbying and meeting with politicians from the Municipal, Provincial and Federal Governments.
  • Developing short-term and long-term strategies to fight the construction of the highway and to force the Provincial government to follow its own environmental and growth policies. These strategies have included political action, raising media awareness, development of a communications plan, research into the Government's legislation and policies regarding transportation and the environment, liaison with other interested groups such as the Sierra Club of Canada, and CONE, and a host of other activities.
  • Our board serves in part as a clearing-house to co-ordinate and consolidate research efforts by our membership.
  • A COPE executive committee member was a guest on a call-in radio show on CFRB regarding the highway.
  • COPE testified at the Niagara Escarpment Commission hearings on the MPH on September 19th.
  • COPE made a presentation to Hamilton City Council on September 25th. Hamilton has not formally taken a position on the highway as yet. COPE's presentation aimed to inform Council as to potential negative environmental, economic, and human health consequences associated with the MPH.
  • COPE presented a press conference with respected artist and naturalist Robert Bateman on September 28th. The event received widespread media coverage. Mr. Bateman expressed his strong opposition to the MPH in no uncertain terms! See the website for details.
  • We have taken preliminary steps toward arranging for a possible legal battle. We have sought and received preliminary support and guidance from CELA (the Canadian Environmental Law Association).
  • We are in the preliminary stages of arranging to liaise with Six Nations. They may have interests in the routes currently proposed by the MTO in terms of possible interference with their burial grounds and ancestral sites. COPE was asked to make a presentation on the MPH to the Six Nations Council. We are scheduled to do so in December 2002.
  • We have reviewed the reports (thousands of pages worth) published by the Ministry of Transportation to analyze the validity of their determination that a highway is needed in the area proposed.
  • COPE participated in two of the three workshops held by the MTO in November 2002. Two members were present at each of the Burlington and Hamilton workshops (COPE was not invited to participate in the Niagara workshop). Our members provided input along with other stakeholders including city council members, Regional Chairs, MPP’s, industry representatives, other citizen groups, and representatives of the Ministry of Transportation. Since the workshops have had no affect on the direction the MTO has taken, it is unclear as to why they were held. Also, they were only ½ day in length. Many in attendance expressed the sentiment that there wasn’t enough time allotted to truly discuss the issues.
  • Along with other groups, we have submitted comments to the MTO outlining our concerns with the MTO’s flawed process and Needs Assessment. Our input has been ignored as indicated by the MTO’s announcement at the November PIC Meetings in which they stated their intention to move on to the next step of the process – the terms of reference for the Environmental Assessment. They also announced that additional routes for the road would be considered. The public outcry to consider alternate modes of transportation was ignored.
  • COPE was highly visible at the September PIC Meetings and we maintained our high profile at the November PIC Meetings. Members attended all three PICs: Rockton, Welland and Burlington. We learned first hand that the level of support for the highway in the Niagara Region has been overstated. The opinions voiced by the participants at the Welland PIC were overwhelmingly opposed to the highway. We signed up more new members at Welland and joined forces with a citizens group formed to fight the highway from the Niagara area. The opposition to the highway at the Burlington and Rockton PICs was also overwhelming.
  • We continue to work with many other interested groups including the Sierra Club of Canada, Environment Hamilton, the Coalition on the Niagara Escarpment and others. In addition, we have solicited and received a great deal of grassroots offers of individual support.

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The COPE website was updated October 30, 2012
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