Advocacy for public toilets in Liébert Park

Players from the Tétreaultville Titans baseball team are asking the Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve borough to build public toilets in Liébert Park.

Twelve-year-old and receiver for Les Titans de Tétreaultville for three seasons, Clémence Bourdon Lavoie spoke at the last meeting of the MHM borough council to denounce the situation at Liébert Park.

« It’s special not to have a toilet, especially because there are a lot of people who come here, laments Clémence, in an interview with Subway. There is an ice rink, water games and in the summer, you have to ask for it as our only dry toilet.

If the absence of toilets or changing rooms is generally problematic for baseball teams using the park’s facilities, the situation becomes embarrassing when the Titans receive teams from other sectors, explains the young girl.

« The large majority [des autres équipes] have public toilets or small chalets, says Clémence. It’s embarrassing when a team drives an hour here and they can’t even go to the bathroom, » she said, adding that her team won the women’s provincial championship in 2021.

Renovate instead of build

At the borough council meeting on September 6, Mayor Pierre Lessard-Blais explained that his administration’s priority was to renovate existing park chalets instead of building new ones, a decision that can be explained, among other things, by the MHM’s limited budgetary capacities.

« I understand that we need to renovate, but there are some who don’t even have a toilet, » replies Clémence.

We don’t want a $1 million cottage. It may just be two or three small toilets.

Clémence Bourdon Lavoie, receiver for the Titans

Stressed but supported

The young girl admits to having felt a lot of stress during her intervention at the council, but the presence of several players from her team on site reassured her.

Two friends of Clémence were also present during her interview with Subway. The latter support the steps of their friend, saying they are proud of her. One of the two also clarified that girls sometimes need to go to the bathroom « for different reasons » than boys.

Looking for a place

There are a total of 18 baseball teams in Mercier, according to the president of the Tétreaultville Titans, Benoit Cabana, which represents nearly 200 players aged 4 to 18. On the lot, there are two women’s teams.

If other parks in the borough are used for games, the majority of Titans activities are held at Parc Liébert, explains Mr. Cabana. Like Clémence, the latter would like a park chalet to be built there, but not only that.

We are the only association out of the ten Baseball Quebec region of Montreal not to have premises provided by our Borough and a chalet in our main park.

Benoit Cabana, president of the Tétreaultville Titans

The current administrative office of the Titans is located in a church basement, explains the president, which implies costs of approximately $4,000 per year.

Without this rent, the Titans could reduce the registration fees for the youngest, he claims.

For six years, Benoit Cabana has been trying to obtain this premises from the Borough. « [L’Arrondissement] made attempts, but the personnel changes so much, that it is always necessary to renew our requests , tells the president.

For its part, the Borough explains that the number of premises is limited in MHM and that priority is given to community organizations serving a large public.

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