With burning troubles in health, education and inflation, Ford poured gas on the fire and walked away, says NDP
QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario is in a health care crisis due to a massive staffing shortage — and the NDP says Ford poured gasoline on the fires, and walked away.
That’s why the NDP is calling for MPPs to continue to sit at Queen’s Park to debate and implement solutions to the health care crisis, as well the skyrocketing cost of living, and a looming education staffing shortage.
Premier Doug Ford and the Conservatives adjourned the legislature Wednesday.
“Hospitals across the province are barely hanging on, and more nurses are leaving the profession every day,” said NDP Leader Peter Tabuns. “People are left waiting in chairs and on the floor as their pain worsens. We’re still seeing rolling closures of operating rooms, hospital units and even entire emergency departments. This is a crisis, and it’s wrong for the Conservative government to pour gasoline on the fire, and walk away.
“The Conservative government’s wage cap legislation, Bill 124, is a major factor in the crisis — health care workers say it’s driving them away. On top of that, Ford has said he’ll privatize more of the health care system, siphoning staff away from hospitals.”
This week, Ontario Health data showed the average wait for hospital admission had grown to nearly 21 hours. Recent data also showed that 1,417 Ontarians died waiting for surgery over the last year.
“We’re already seeing signs of staffing shortages in our children’s schools, too,” said NDP Education critic Marit Stiles. “Educational assistants are stretched so thin, children with challenges are getting just a fraction of the support they need. Class sizes are too big. Some classrooms can’t be cleaned daily because there aren’t enough custodians. And all this is happening at a time when kids need more support than ever before to recover from years of disruption.
“The Ford government has been freezing the wages of education workers and teachers far below inflation and cutting the education budget. They’re cutting education jobs, they’re driving education workers away, and it’s our children that are going to pay the price for that.”
NDP Deputy Leader Doly Begum said the legislature needs to sit, so MPPs can debate and implement solutions.
“We can help people,” said Begum. “The NDP has proposed an action plan to recruit, retain and return workers in health care. We’ve proposed hiring in education, instead of cutting. We’ve proposed solutions to make housing more affordable, including real rent control and a plan to stop developers from gouging. We can make sure public services are there for us all, and we can help working people and families that are being gouged by inflation — but not if Ford just walks away and leaves these problems burning.”