The latest modelling is a sign of political mismanagement that makes Ontario closer to a “failed state”, says CUPE Ontario.
“I’m hearing more doctors call what’s happening in this province a humanitarian crisis,” said Fred Hahn, President of CUPE Ontario. “And when you’re in the middle of a humanitarian crisis and your government continually fails to deliver what people need to stay safe, what else are we talking about but a failed state under the Ford Conservatives?”
“None of this can be blamed on front-line workers and communities that are continuing to do the best they can,” added Hahn. “This is all on Ford’s government.”
The modelling numbers revealed today were grim, with ICU beds rapidly filling up and with daily COVID-19 case numbers projected to rise to as high as 30,000 in the worst-case scenario.
“There’s a saying about hunger being natural while famines are man-made,” said Hahn. “COVID-19 is an incredibly contagious virus but it’s becoming clearer to Ontarians that we’re in as critical and alarming a moment as we are because of persistent political failures. The simple fact is that Ford failed and many people who didn’t have to will get sick and die.”
CUPE Ontario is urging the government to immediately:
- Develop a comprehensive and detailed vaccine rollout plan that prioritizes hard hit, racialized communities;
- Ensure that the rollout is backed up with resources for local Public Health units and community organizations;
- Dedicate sufficient funding to ensure robust contact tracing and accelerated rapid testing;
- Mandate and supply appropriate PPE for all workers;
- Finally take action with supports needed to address the growing crisis in Long-Term Care;
- Actually listen to Education workers and put in the supports needed, like smaller class sizes, to ensure a safe return to school as soon as possible;
- Legislate paid sick time for all workers;
- And develop a comprehensive action plan to address the disproportionate impacts of the pandemic on racialized communities.
“These are the kinds of actions the Ford government needs to take,” said Hahn. “They should never have even floated the idea of a curfew, which does little but blames everyday Ontarians for this crisis. What we need is a government that will address and reverse the systemic failures that are endangering us and preventing a swift recovery.”