Rather than fixing their misguided plan to privatize Ontario’s electricity system the government has opted to throw good money after bad, said Fred Hahn, president of CUPE Ontario.
“Today’s Throne Speech was little more than a rehash of their previous budget speech and shows how clearly disconnected the Premier is from what is actually going on for people in the real world outside the bubble of Queen’s Park,” said Hahn. “People are struggling and removing the provincial portion of the HST off hydro bills is not going to change that. In fact, it just redirects more public money into the pockets of the same corporate shareholders that have already made $60 million off of the initial sale of shares in our hydro system.”
“The fact that the government continues to steam roll ahead with their plan to further privatize hydro means today’s announcement is nothing more than an attempt at a short-term buy off with serious long-term consequences,” said Hahn. “There is no question the people of Ontario need help but taking even more money away from funding the public services we all need is simply wrong. Instead of the change in direction we need, the Premier has doubled down on bad policy and is further undermining the public services that are supposed to make life fairer for the rest of us.”
“If our Premier was serious about fixing her governments direction she would have provided a clear sign that she is on the side of the people and not her big corporate donors. She would immediately stop any further sale of Hydro One,” said Hahn. “What the people of this province need from their government is a complete change of course. For over two decades our governments have been bowing to the corporate agenda, continually cutting corporate taxes and opening our public services to private profit. People are sick of the odds being stacked against them and with today’s Throne Speech the Premier has chosen to ignore them.”
CUPE is Ontario’s community union, with more than 260,000 members providing quality public services we all rely on, in every part of the province, every day. CUPE Ontario members are proud to work in social services, health care, municipalities, school boards, universities and airlines.
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Sarah Jordison, CUPE Communications