Ontario Federation of Labour

Ontario Federation of Labour

November 29, 2012 05:00 ET

Advisory: Oshawa Town Hall Exposes Local Impact of Government Cuts to Services and Democratic Rights

OSHAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 29, 2012) - Outraged at the McGuinty governments' deep cuts to social programs and the recent attack on the democratic rights of education workers, community members from across Oshawa will be gathering this evening for a public town hall meeting. The forum will provide an opportunity for local residents to discuss the impact of job loss and public service cuts in their communities and develop plans to bring pressure to bear on local members of parliament.

The meeting will address local concern over the rising unemployment rates and alarming poverty levels in the Durham region. This year, the Oshawa unemployment rate is topping out at 9.2 percent, which is considerably higher than the national average of 7.4 percent. With so many desperate for work, it is no wonder that almost 9 percent of Durham Region residents are currently living in low income situations. However, the impact of cuts is being felt across most income levels. A recent report from the Ontario Common Front revealed that fully 40 percent of Ontario families have seen their incomes stagnate or fall over the last decade, as Ontario's social program funding lags behind every other province by nearly every measure.

"In communities across the province, families are falling further behind because of McGuinty's cuts to vital services and social programs, while corporate tax cuts continue to starve Ontario's economy of $15 billion annually," said Sid Ryan, President of the Ontario Federation of Labour. "Struggling families here in Oshawa are right to demand fairness and equity from the McGuinty government. Investing in jobs, protecting services and safeguarding workers' democratic rights is the only way to prevent a double-dip recession and address rising inequality."

WHAT: Oshawa Community Town Hall Meeting on Economic & Democratic Rights
WHEN: Thurs, November 29 from 7:00 - 9:00 pm
WHERE: Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 43 (471 Simcoe Street South, Oshawa)

"The impact of cuts here in Durham is getting more noticeable every day," said Durham Region Labour Council President Jim Freeman. "More than one thousand people lined up for a handful of jobs at the new Costco in Oshawa and food bank usage is up by 50 percent. People are desperate for support from a government that is only delivering cuts."

"Labour and community groups have come together to launch an Ontario Common Front against cuts to jobs and services. Now it is time to build these partnerships in every community - from Windsor to Oshawa to Ottawa," said Ryan. "It is time for the people to start setting the agenda."

The Oshawa town hall is one in a series of regional meetings taking place across Ontario in the lead-up to the Ontario Liberal Leadership Convention and what many view as an inevitable spring election. Community and labour groups have banded together to call on the government to recall the legislature, reverse Bill 115 and invest in the jobs and services.

For more information, visit: www.ofl.ca/index.php/campaigns/democraticrights.

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. For information, visit www.OFL.ca and follow the OFL on Facebook and Twitter: @OFLabour.

Contact Information

  • Ontario Federation of Labour
    Sid Ryan
    416-209-0066 (cell)

    Ontario Federation of Labour
    Jim Freeman
    Durham Region Labour Council

    Ontario Federation of Labour
    Joel Duff, Communications Director (ENG/FRENCH)
    416-707-0349 (cell)