QUEEN’S PARK - Earlier today, Premier Ford and his Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark once again claimed their Greenbelt Grab is necessary due to “huge influx of new Canadians” indicated by the federal government’s increased immigration targets.
In fact, their Greenbelt Grab predates the federal government’s immigration target announcement.
- The federal government announced their increased immigration targets in November 2022
- According to the Auditor General’s report, by October 2022, the Housing Ministry had briefed staff in the Premier’s office and Cabinet on proposed removal of land sites from the Greenbelt
- The Greenbelt changes were already confirmed well before the federal government announced their increased immigration targets
- Here is the full timeline between October – November 2022
The Conservatives’ attempt to blame their corrupt actions on immigration levels is not only craven and dangerous, but also completely preposterous.
As Fatima Syed wrote in February:
“If the Ford government really cared about where and how immigrants lived, it would consider broadening the idea of what an affordable home is. Instead, it’s trying to deflect blame as Ontarians wonder why, exactly, environmental protections are being dismantled in the name of housing that doesn’t seem to make sense for newcomers, or anyone else.”
Ontario is in a housing crisis. The Conservatives’ Greenbelt Grab will only make it worse by fueling greedy land speculation.
The Conservatives’ Greenbelt Grab is as much about immigration as it is about housing – which is not at all. It’s about a corrupt government rewarding a select few of their donors at the expense of everyone else.
Doug, face the music: recall the Legislature, return these lands to the Greenbelt, and let’s get on building homes people can actually afford to live in, in communities they want to live in.