Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) - Ontario

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) - Ontario

July 06, 2011 14:06 ET

McGuinty Government Abandons Economic Development in Northern Ontario, CUPE Ontario President

'The decision to ship over 100 jobs out of North Bay, and out of Province, highlights the critical need for strong local procurement policies that create and keep jobs in Ontario,' says Fred Hahn

NORTH BAY, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 6, 2011) - The decision to ship 109 manufacturing jobs out of North Bay is proof the McGuinty Government has abandoned real economic development in Northern Ontario, the President of the Canadian Union of Public Employees Ontario (CUPE Ontario) said today.

"The McGuinty Government is throwing away Northern Ontario's future. While they may claim that this decision is independent, made by an arms-length body, this government established Metrolinx and its board is full of McGuinty Government appointees," said Fred Hahn.

On June 24, Metrolinx announced they would award a $122 million contract to refurbish 127 GO Transit railway cars to CAD Rail, located in Montreal, despite the fact that Ontario Northland has the facilities to perform the work and has done identical work in the past at its yards in North Bay.

"Premier McGuinty needs to stand up for Northern Ontario and commit to keeping these jobs in the region. He must truly commit to using the Ontario Government's power, through its procurement policy, in ways that keep jobs in Ontario and truly benefits Northerners," Henri Giroux, CUPE Ontario's Fourth Vice-President said.

Giroux, who is also president of the North Bay and District Labour Council, as well as an NDP candidate in the upcoming Provincial election, added that the loss of 109 well-paying manufacturing jobs would be a devastating blow to Northeastern Ontario and specifically North Bay.

"Northland's bid on the contract was only 1.68 per cent higher than the winning bid, but the net benefit to Ontario of retaining 109 workers who will earn $34 million in direct wages and $7.5 million in tax revenues far outweighs any cost savings achieved by shipping jobs out of our region," he said.

Hahn urged the government to step in and "make a real commitment to economic development for the Nipissing Region, rather than writing off Northern Ontario," by insisting Metrolinx consider the full economic benefits of keeping the work in the Province.

"This situation once again highlights the need for leadership on developing local procurement policies that build better communities across Ontario, rather than shipping money and jobs out of the Province," he added.

Contact Information

  • CUPE Ontario
    Fred Hahn

    CUPE Communications
    Ryan LeClaire