42e législature, 2e session

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L060 - Thu 28 Apr 2022 / Jeu 28 avr 2022

LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY OF ONTARIO

ASSEMBLÉE LÉGISLATIVE DE L’ONTARIO

Thursday 28 April 2022 Jeudi 28 avril 2022

Tabling of sessional papers

Order of business

Reports by Committees

Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills

Orders of the Day

Order of business

Ross Memorial Hospital Act, 2022

201827 Ontario Limited Act, 2022

201827 Ontario Limited Act, 2022

1692783 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

1692783 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

1712042 Ontario Ltd. Act, 2022

1712042 Ontario Ltd. Act, 2022

Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd. Act, 2022

Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd. Act, 2022

Brisdale Plaza Inc. Act, 2022

Brisdale Plaza Inc. Act, 2022

2127023 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

2127023 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Eleanor Fulcher Limited Act, 2022

Eleanor Fulcher Limited Act, 2022

1833025 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

1833025 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd. Act, 2022

P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd. Act, 2022

Members’ Statements

Hospital funding

Government’s record

Riding of Windsor West

Health care funding

UNESCO City of Music

Larga Baffin

Anti-racism activities

Member for Hamilton West–Ancaster–Dundas

Government’s record

Yom ha-Shoah

National Day of Mourning

COVID-19 deaths

Introduction of Visitors

Legislative pages

Question Period

Health care funding

Government’s record

Government’s record

Transportation infrastructure

Autism treatment

COVID-19 immunization

Public transit

Tenant protection

Long-term care

Transportation infrastructure

Government’s record

Government’s record

Employment standards / Small business

Préposés aux services de soutien personnel / Personal support workers

42nd Parliament

Deferred Votes

Police Services Amendment Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 modifiant la Loi sur les services policiers

Ross Memorial Hospital Act, 2022

Ross Memorial Hospital Act, 2022

Reports by Committees

Select Committee on Emergency Management Oversight

Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills

Introduction of Bills

Making Psychotherapy Services Tax-Free Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 pour des services de psychothérapie exempts de taxes

No Time to Waste Act (Plan for Climate Action and Jobs), 2022 / Loi de 2022 sur la nécessité de ne pas gaspiller de temps (plan en matière d’action pour le climat et l’emploi)

Supporting Economic Recovery and Renewal in the Niagara Region Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 visant à soutenir la reprise et le renouveau économiques dans la région de Niagara

Labour Relations Amendment Act (Replacement Workers), 2022 / Loi de 2022 modifiant la Loi sur les relations de travail (travailleurs suppléants)

Safe Night Out Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 visant à favoriser des sorties sans danger

Justice for Victims of Occupational Disease Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 sur la justice pour les victimes de maladies professionnelles

Visitor

Motions

House sittings

Petitions

Anti-racism activities

Social assistance

Social assistance

Social assistance

Sexual assault

Documents gouvernementaux

Curriculum

Social assistance

Guide and service animals

Affordable housing

Social assistance

Visitors

Member for Brampton North

42nd Parliament

Royal assent / Sanction royale

Orders of the Day

2022 Ontario budget / Budget de l’Ontario de 2022

Introduction of Government Bills

Plan to Build Act (Budget Measures), 2022 / Loi de 2022 pour favoriser le développement (mesures budgétaires)

 

The House met at 0900.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Good morning. Let us pray.

Prayers / Prières.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I beg to inform the House that, pursuant to standing order 2, I am temporarily authorizing the members for Kenora–Rainy River and Mississauga–Streetsville to switch seats in the chamber.

Tabling of sessional papers

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I beg to inform the House that during the adjournment the following documents were tabled:

—a report entitled the Impact of Provincial Spending and Revenue Collection on Ontario Families, from the Financial Accountability Office of Ontario;

—a report entitled Lost Opportunities: Investigation into the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services’ Implementation of the Decision to Close Custody and Detention Programs at Creighton Youth Centre and J.J. Kelso Youth Centre, from the Office of the Ombudsman of Ontario; and

—a report concerning Andrea Horwath, the leader of the official opposition and member for Hamilton Centre, from the Office of the Integrity Commissioner of Ontario.

Order of business

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’ll recognize the member for Parry Sound–Muskoka.

Mr. Norman Miller: On a point of order: Speaker, if you seek it, you will find unanimous consent for the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills to present its report on private bills, after which the House shall revert to orders of the day.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Miller, Parry Sound–Muskoka, is seeking the unanimous consent of the House for the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills to present its report on private bills, after which the House shall revert to orders of the day. Agreed? Agreed.

Reports by Committees

Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills

Mr. Aris Babikian: I beg leave to present a report from the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills and move its adoption.

The Clerk-at-the-Table (Mr. Wai Lam (William) Wong): Your committee begs to report the following bills without amendment:

Bill Pr69, An Act to revive Brisdale Plaza Inc.

Bill Pr70, An Act to revive 2127023 Ontario Inc.

Bill Pr72, An Act to revive 1833025 Ontario Inc.

Bill Pr74, An Act to revive P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Shall the report be received and adopted? Agreed? Agreed.

Report adopted.

Orders of the Day

Order of business

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Once again, I’ll recognize the member for Parry Sound–Muskoka.

Mr. Norman Miller: Speaker, if you seek it, you will find unanimous consent that I may move a motion without notice respecting the passage of private bills.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Miller, Parry Sound–Muskoka, is seeking the unanimous consent of the House to move a motion without notice respecting the passage of private bills. Agreed? Agreed.

I recognize the member for Parry Sound–Muskoka.

Mr. Norman Miller: I move that the order for second reading of Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital, shall be called immediately and that there shall be up to 15 minutes of debate on the motion for second reading, with five minutes allotted to Her Majesty’s loyal opposition, five minutes allotted to the independent members as a group, and five minutes allotted to Her Majesty’s government; and

At the end of this time, the Speaker shall interrupt the proceedings and put every question necessary to dispose of this stage of the bill; and

That the order for third reading shall be called immediately and the question on the motion for third reading shall be put immediately without debate; and

That the orders for second and third reading of the following private bills shall be called consecutively and the questions on the motions for second and third reading of the bills be put immediately without debate:

Bill Pr59, An Act to revive 201827 Ontario Limited;

Bill Pr60, An Act to revive 1692783 Ontario Inc.;

Bill Pr61, An Act to revive 1712042 Ontario Ltd.;

Bill Pr68, An Act to revive Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd.;

Bill Pr69, An Act to revive Brisdale Plaza Inc.;

Bill Pr70, An Act to revive 2127023 Ontario Inc.;

Bill Pr71, An Act to revive Eleanor Fulcher Limited;

Bill Pr72, An Act to revive 1833025 Ontario Inc.;

Bill Pr74, An Act to revive P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd.; and

That the member for Parry Sound–Muskoka may move the motions for second and third readings of Bills Pr65, Pr68 and Pr72 on behalf of their respective sponsors.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Miller, Parry Sound–Muskoka, has moved that the order for second reading of Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital—

Interjection: Dispense.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Dispense? Dispense.

Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? The motion is carried.

Motion agreed to.

Ross Memorial Hospital Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller, on behalf of Ms. Scott, moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Further debate?

Mme France Gélinas: It is my pleasure to put a few words on the record this morning regarding the Ross Memorial Hospital. First of all, this hospital is located in Kawartha Lakes, a beautiful, beautiful area of Ontario, one of those big amalgamated municipalities, mainly rural—the second-biggest after the city of Greater Sudbury, just so that you know, and a very beautiful place.

There has been a hospital in Lindsay since 1903—a very long time, a very well-used hospital. Of course, you would not recognize what was there in 1903. There have been many, many changes—changes to the hospital, but also changes to the law that governs that hospital. It was first put into place in 1903. There were changes made in 1954 and 1964, and the most recent were in 2000. They are now asking for more changes to be done to the law that governs that hospital, and as the NDP, we cannot support this.

Let me read from the bill. The preamble of the bill says, “The Ross Memorial Hospital has applied for special legislation to change the name of the hospital corporation”—no problem with that—but also “to change its objects, its powers, the composition of its board and its membership structure.” I have problems with each and every one of those.

Let me read some of the objects of the bill. “On the date this act receives royal assent, the only members of the corporation shall be the voting directors of the corporation, and such individuals shall be members of the corporation only for so long as they serve as voting directors.” Right now, anybody who wants to can be a member of the corporation of this hospital, and then they elect a board of directors. This connection to the community would automatically be gone.

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And then it gets worse. The objects of the corporation are: “to establish, equip, staff, maintain, operate, conduct and manage a hospital and health facilities with programs and services that may include” emergency services. Everybody understands, or they should understand, that if you pass this bill, you are giving this hospital the—I would not call it an opportunity—threat of it not having a big H on it anymore; that its objects would not include having an emergency department; that the emergency department that has been there since 1903 could be taken away.

The argument will be made that Peterborough hospital is very close; I don’t buy that. The people of Lindsay, the people of Kawartha need to continue to have an emergency department. They need to continue to have a full-fledged hospital that changes to meet the needs of the people it serves—yes, absolutely. With the law the way it is written now, this hospital has to continue to be a full-fledged hospital. That means they have to continue to provide an emergency department. That means they have to continue to provide many of the services that make it a full-fledged hospital and that maintain the big H on the hospital. Once we pass Bill Pr65, all of this is at risk.

I’ve been in this position long enough—I have seen many small hospitals very similar to the hospital in Lindsay lose their emergency department. I have seen many hospitals in my own city close and not be hospitals anymore. As long as the law that governs that hospital stays there, the people of Lindsay, the people of Kawartha Lakes, the people who support having a full-fledged hospital at the Ross Memorial site are protected. The minute that we vote yes to this, everything is at risk—everything. We’ve seen throughout the pandemic how important it is to have a full-fledged hospital. People know that oftentimes your primary care is not there; you need to go to an emergency department.

Make sure that this emergency department stays in Lindsay, stays at Ross hospital, and vote no to this bill.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Further debate?

Ms. Laurie Scott: I’m happy to have the opportunity today to clear up what the member opposite has said about Ross Memorial Hospital.

The majority of Ontario hospital boards operate under a modern and effective skills-based membership model. No matter the size or location of a hospital, this type of board is commonly accepted as best practice and is in line with the guidelines set out by the Ontario Hospital Association. The provisions of Bill Pr65 do not waive any of Ross Memorial Hospital’s responsibilities to provide the services they currently provide, including services in the emergency department and operating rooms.

Mr. Speaker, I’m quite upset that the official opposition is setting the stage for those services to be gone from the community. That is absolutely not true or accurate, and it is actually partisan, what they’re doing.

Ross Memorial Hospital has and will continue to have 12 community members who are appointed to the board. Those 12 community members are thoroughly vetted to ensure their qualifications to further support Ross Memorial Hospital in its capacity to meet the health care needs of the community.

Bill Pr65 is going to ensure involvement of board members who are vetted for their qualifications to support the fulfillment of the hospital’s health care services.

The PC government has invested more in health care than any other government in Ontario’s history. We have a plan to stay open and are getting it done, because we are saying yes to health care—$27 billion over 10 years for hospital projects that create 3,000 new beds. And guess what? That investment includes Ross Memorial Hospital.

Since 2017-18, we’ve increased funding by 24.5%, with an additional $2 million for important infrastructure upgrades. And we have addressed the historic working funds deficits with a focus on small and medium-sized hospitals, which includes Ross Memorial, with an investment over $800,000—that is annual investment.

The opposition likes to make claims that we’re trying to privatize health care, when there has been no expansion to the number of independent health facilities that offer publicly funded procedures in Ontario. In fact, a new licence hasn’t been issued for a private hospital since 1973. And in 1980, there were 19 private hospitals licensed to operate in Ontario; today, there are just four.

Just last month, Ross Memorial Hospital performed their first surgery in a brand new operating room supported and funded by our government. This is going to allow Ross Memorial Hospital to clear their surgical backlog by the end of the year.

By making local investment in health care, in Ross Memorial Hospital—continuing to increase their capital funds—we’re expanding local health services. This investment brings the total number of active operating rooms in Ross Memorial Hospital to seven, so they can treat more members of our community without them having to travel lengthy distances.

I rose in the House on March 24 to introduce this bill. The bill was reported back without any amendments. If the members had any concerns with this bill, why didn’t they come to the committee and bring them forward? The committee is the opportunity to call witnesses, examine the bill in detail and make amendments.

Our government’s commitment, from day one, was to improve health care in the province of Ontario.

Ross Memorial Hospital was incorporated by a special act of the Ontario Legislature in 1903, as the member opposite said; it has been amended three times since. As health care continues to evolve in Ontario, it’s necessary to amend the special act again.

There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that Ross Memorial Hospital is dedicated to providing vital acute-care services to our community. Updating outdated legislation and bringing it in line with best-practice guidelines set out by the Ontario Hospital Association is another way that local health care is adapting to better serve community needs.

Ross Memorial Hospital’s board of governors includes 12 independent voting community members, and this structure will continue under the new special act—including patient, family and community member advisory roles on board committees.

When we were first elected, our health care system was broken, and over the last four years we made real investments to fix it. We increased health care spending from $59.3 billion to an expected $64.1 billion in 2021-22. The previous government, supported by the opposition, froze health care, especially small and medium-size hospitals’ growth. Our government has made that change.

I stand in support of what Ross Memorial Hospital has put forward.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Further debate? Further debate?

Mr. Miller, Parry Sound–Muskoka, has moved second reading of Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital. Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? I heard some noes.

All those in favour of the motion will please say “aye.”

All those opposed will please say “nay.”

In my opinion, the ayes have it.

This will be a recorded vote. We will have it when we next do deferred votes.

Second reading vote deferred.

201827 Ontario Limited Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr59, An Act to revive 201827 Ontario Limited.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

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201827 Ontario Limited Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr59, An Act to revive 201827 Ontario Limited.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

1692783 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Gates moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr60, An Act to revive 1692783 Ontario Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

1692783 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Gates moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr60, An Act to revive 1692783 Ontario Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

1712042 Ontario Ltd. Act, 2022

Mr. Gates moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr61, An Act to revive 1712042 Ontario Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

1712042 Ontario Ltd. Act, 2022

Mr. Gates moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr61, An Act to revive 1712042 Ontario Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd. Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller, on behalf of Mr. Bouma, moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr68, An Act to revive Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd. Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller, on behalf of Mr. Bouma, moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr68, An Act to revive Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

Brisdale Plaza Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Gurratan Singh moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr69, An Act to revive Brisdale Plaza Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

Brisdale Plaza Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Gurratan Singh moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr69, An Act to revive Brisdale Plaza Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

2127023 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Gurratan Singh moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr70, An Act to revive 2127023 Ontario Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

2127023 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Gurratan Singh moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr70, An Act to revive 2127023 Ontario Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

Eleanor Fulcher Limited Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr71, An Act to revive Eleanor Fulcher Limited.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

Eleanor Fulcher Limited Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr71, An Act to revive Eleanor Fulcher Limited.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

1833025 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller, on behalf of Mr. Pettapiece, moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr72, An Act to revive 1833025 Ontario Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

1833025 Ontario Inc. Act, 2022

Mr. Norman Miller, on behalf of Mr. Pettapiece, moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr72, An Act to revive 1833025 Ontario Inc.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd. Act, 2022

Mr. Ke moved second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr74, An Act to revive P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Second reading agreed to.

P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd. Act, 2022

Mr. Ke moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr74, An Act to revive P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Orders of the day.

I recognize the member for Aurora–Oak Ridges–Richmond Hill.

Mr. Michael Parsa: No further business.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): There being no further business, this House will stand in recess until 10:15 this morning.

The House recessed from 0931 to 1015.

Members’ Statements

Hospital funding

Mr. Wayne Gates: I rise today to remind this government that health care in Niagara is in crisis. Decades of underfunding, cuts and inaction have left our local hospitals on the brink of collapse. Seniors are waiting in hospital hallways for medical care.

This week, Dr. Hirji, our acting medical officer of health, raised alarm bells. Speaker, 19 patients have died this month in Niagara. Niagara Health has eight COVID outbreaks at Niagara hospitals. Eighty patients with COVID are being treated in hospital, with six in intensive care. And 283 hospital workers and doctors were in isolation after exposure to COVID. Niagara Health has again had to delay surgeries because of COVID outbreaks and staffing shortages.

We need beds in our hospitals that are fully staffed. Bill 124 must be repealed immediately so we can attract and retain more nurses.

I fought alongside the residents to have Fort Erie’s urgent care centre reopened. We were successful in that fight, but the people of Fort Erie need to know that their urgent care centre will not be taken away from them again.

We need shovels in the ground on the new Niagara Falls hospital. Start the build now, with local workers, local engineers, local businesses.

My constituents have waited too long and fought too hard for the health care they need and deserve.

Meanwhile, the Premier said this week that he’s shutting down the Legislature early because he doesn’t want to ruin cottage season.

Speaker, it’s time for our government to prioritize the well-being of all Ontarians, not just their own, and take care of the people in Niagara.

Government’s record

Mr. Rudy Cuzzetto: Last week, I had the opportunity to visit the Mississauga Hospital, where early work is already under way on a multi-billion dollar project to build the largest and most advanced hospital in Canadian history. It should have been built 15 years ago, but we are getting it done.

I also joined a town hall on the construction of 632 new, modern long-term-care beds on Speakman Drive. That’s more beds than the Liberals built for the entire province. This government is getting it done.

On Tuesday, I joined the Minister of Transportation to see the first piece of track installed on the new $4.6-billion Hazel McCallion LRT line that begins right here in Port Credit. It will link up to a new $56-million bus rapid transit corridor along Lakeshore. We are getting it done.

Yesterday, I visited the construction site of a $314-million project to improve the QEW. They were installing concrete slabs for a new bridge across Mississauga Road—and they were installed right side up.

Yesterday, I also announced $1.4 million in grants to 15 local non-profits, through the Resilient Communities Fund.

And later today, we will be cutting the ribbon at the Lakeshore Lofts, with 68 supportive, affordable housing units for seniors and people living with disabilities.

I want to thank this Premier and all our great ministers for their work on these projects. Together, we are getting it done for the people of Mississauga–Lakeshore and Ontario.

Riding of Windsor West

Mrs. Lisa Gretzky: I rise today to thank the people of Windsor West for trusting me as their MPP for the last eight years. It has been an honour to represent the people of Windsor West and to fight for our community. We have accomplished so much together.

We’ve recently celebrated the announcement of the first electric vehicle battery plant being built in Windsor, the first in all of Canada.

We’ve successfully worked across party lines to secure the funding for our new hospital.

We were successful in ensuring that palliative patients across Canada could move back to Ontario and receive the end-of-life care they need while surrounded by their loved ones—a bill that was imagined and developed from the experiences of Windsorites.

We tabled legislation to guarantee access to essential caregivers for residents in long-term-care homes, hospitals, supportive housing and more during the pandemic—a bill that began changes in Ontario and around the world.

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We rallied outside of Queen’s Park for better, more timely autism services and supports for people with disabilities.

We held a successful community pop-up vaccine clinic, with the help of Dr. Doko and many local organizations, including the Windsor chamber of commerce.

Alongside small business owners in my community, we stood up to this Conservative government and called out their inadequate support programs during the lockdowns and again during the six-day blockade that shut down the Ambassador Bridge.

I thank the members from Essex and Windsor–Tecumseh for their friendship, mentorship and community service. I wish them all the best in their new adventures.

Lastly, thank you to my staff for their hard work and dedication to helping our constituents. I am so proud of our accomplishments, and I cannot wait to continue to fight for my community.

Health care funding

Mr. Logan Kanapathi: We have great news for the seniors of Ontario. Our government is investing $1 billion more over the next three years to further expand home care. This funding will benefit the nearly 700,000 families who rely on home care annually, preventing unnecessary hospital and long-term-care admissions, and shortening hospital stays. This includes many Markham–Thornhill resdents who will receive the care they need in the comfort of their own homes.

My mother passed away last year. She was in home care for many years.

Mr. Speaker, the 2021 national census shows that seniors over the age of 85 make up one of the country’s fastest-growing demographics. The population of that age group is expected to triple over the next 25 years. Our government has been very conscious of this growing demographic, and we are also making investments in 30,000 new and 28,000 upgraded long-term-care beds to accommodate our fastest-growing senior population. Over 600 beds are coming to Markham alone, which includes more beds at the Mon Sheong senior care campus.

We want to guarantee that anyone who moves into a long-term-care home gets the quality of care and access to treatment that they deserve. That’s why we are also hiring 27,000 long-term-care staff to ensure every senior receives a minimum of four hours of care per day.

The previous government only built 611 new beds, during their two terms, in all of Ontario. We are building more beds in Markham alone than the Liberals did across all of Ontario during their two terms.

I am very proud that our government continues to be committed to supporting our seniors.

UNESCO City of Music

Mr. Terence Kernaghan: I’m honoured today to rise to recognize London’s designation as a UNESCO City of Music, the first in Canada. London has long been known for its gorgeous neighbourhoods, historic streetscapes, exceptional educational institutions, world-class health care and research, and it is now recognized for its vibrant arts culture and second-to-none venues.

I’ve spoken in this chamber and to ministers opposite about our burgeoning digital creative sector, brilliant innovations, concierge service with the London Film Office, world-class Forest City Film Festival, as well as the Palace Theatre, the Fringe Festival and all the great happenings here in London.

I recently met with the amazing folks at the London Arts Council, and we discussed how the arts distinguish us from all other species. The arts are among the highest forms of expression, linked with mental health, social cohesion, civic pride, neighbourhood identity, and they are a robust economic driver. The arts are vital.

There are so many great organizations in London, such as TAP Centre for Creativity, Bealart, AK Arts Academy, Rock the Park, Museum London; and venues such as the Grand Theatre—many thanks to Deb Harvey for the amazing renovation—Aeolian Hall, London Music Hall, Budweiser Gardens, Centennial Hall, RBC Place and so many more. I look forward to all the great things happening in London.

Many thanks to Kapil Lakhotia of LEDC and the London Chamber of Commerce’s Graham Henderson for your strong leadership in Ontario’s fastest-growing city, the Forest City.

It’s an honour and an absolute privilege to represent London. With this UNESCO designation as a world City of Music, it further underscores that London is the place to be. London is a place to invest, and London is a place to grow.

Larga Baffin

Mr. John Fraser: Larga Baffin has been part of our community for many years. They do incredible work to support individuals and families who must travel thousands of miles to get urgent and life-saving care at our local hospitals like CHEO and the General hospital.

Speaker, Ottawa is very fortunate to have world-class health care right here in our community, and sharing that health care with our neighbours to the north is the right thing to do. Travelling a long distance to a place that is very different from where you came from can be scary. It can create a lot of anxiety. Welcoming families from Nunavut at a difficult time in their lives is about the kind of community we all want for each other.

I offer my full support to Larga Baffin as they seek to build a safe and modern place in Ottawa South for the families they serve.

I strongly urge local city councillor Diane Deans and all of city council to adopt a collaborative and co-operative approach to this very important project.

Anti-racism activities

Mr. Vincent Ke: Speaker, I’m always aware of what a great privilege it is to have a platform to elevate the concerns of my constituents.

The pandemic has been hard on everyone, but it has presented additional challenges for many people of Asian heritage who experience anti-Asian racism, which is also known as the shadow pandemic. Just like the COVID-19 pandemic, anti-Asian racism hurts people and causes them to feel isolated and afraid.

To address this issue, I have initiated a social media awareness campaign. I have emailed all Ontario MPPs, MPs, Canadian senators and municipal leaders in the GTA to ask for your and their support for this important non-partisan effort.

My private member’s bill Anti-Asian Racism Education Month Act will be put into action. During the month of May, please help me to promote the positive attributes and contributions of the Asian community to counteract harmful anti-Asian sentiment and racism in our communities. Together, we can rise above hate.

Let’s stop, think, feel, and then act in a collective effort to cultivate love through education to end discrimination.

Member for Hamilton West–Ancaster–Dundas

Ms. Sandy Shaw: I rise today with a deep sense of gratitude for the wonderful people in my riding of Hamilton West–Ancaster–Dundas. It is an honour and a privilege to represent you here in this House.

I also would like to say that, amongst us, it’s no secret that we don’t often agree here. But I know that there’s one thing that we can all agree on, and that’s that we wouldn’t be able to do this work, we wouldn’t be able to be here without the love and the support of our family and friends. We all know that this work takes us away from them so often. That’s why it’s a delight to see a beautiful new baby joining us here in the Legislature this morning.

I’m happy to share that I am also so blessed to have such wonderful family and friends, and I want to thank you deeply from the bottom of my heart.

I also would like to thank my partner in life, my rock, who’s joining us here today. Thank you, Ted, for being there every day for me. I’d just like to thank you for helping me find my glasses almost every day for the last four years. That was a really, really big help.

To Thompson and Madeline: You are my heart. And to my wonderful grandchildren: Noah, Emmett, Sully, Sloan and Baby Mae; to Hawksley and Levon—Hawk, thank you for lending Nan this beautiful pin to wear here today—and to your beautiful brand new baby brother Sam. Nan misses all of you so much when I’m away.

But that’s why I’m here doing this work. That’s why all of us are here doing this work. We’re here fighting for a brighter, greener, better Ontario for all of the children, for all of the grandchildren, for all of the generations to come. We are committed to this work.

I thank you so much for your support and your love.

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Government’s record

Mr. Stephen Crawford: It’s an honour to rise here in the Legislature as the 42nd Parliament is coming to an end, and I want to bring attention to some local and provincial accomplishments.

Over the last four years, the government has supported Oakville by saving Glen Abbey, by expanding the greenbelt with an additional 120 acres into the Fourteen Mile Creek, by investing in Ford Canada’s Oakville assembly plant, by building 640 long-term-care beds, and by investing record amounts in local schools and child care spaces.

We’ve also made significant progress in the province. During these past four years, we’ve introduced animal welfare legislation that introduced the toughest fines in Canada for animal abuse. We’ve cut the small business tax rate. We’ve committed to the largest subway expansion in the province’s history. We’ve cut post-secondary tuition by 10%. We’re providing the largest investment of—$30 billion for hospital infrastructure. We’ve made it easier for foreign professionals to start working in Ontario. We’re making life more affordable by eliminating renewal fees for drivers and providing tax credits for seniors who want to stay in their homes longer. We’re connecting every part of Ontario, with the largest investment in broadband in our history. We’ve updated the school curriculum to teach skills for today’s job market. We are reducing gas prices by 10 cents a litre. We’re building 30,000 more long-term-care beds. And we’re providing a tax reduction to low-income earners.

Our government is getting it done and ensuring Ontario is the best jurisdiction to work, live and raise a family.

Yom ha-Shoah

Ms. Andrea Khanjin: I rise today to remind the Legislature and all Ontarians and Canadians about Yom ha-Shoah, the Jewish Holocaust Remembrance Day. It’s a day to observe the memory of the six million Jews who were murdered in the Holocaust—and to never forget the great lessons of the Holocaust so we may never repeat these atrocities.

Unfortunately, around the world, there’s still misinformation and Holocaust denial, which is why it’s so important that this government made a pivotal step to improve our education system to make sure that students who are learning today understand the atrocities of the Holocaust and the history, so we may never repeat this again. I’m really thankful to the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, which is working with our government on this particular plan in our education system.

Unfortunately, the statistics are increasing—in terms of the crimes that are occurring around anti-Semitism. I see it in my community of Barrie–Innisfil, and we see it all across Ontario.

That’s why it’s upon all of us in this Legislature to ensure that we celebrate the triumph of good over evil and remember that Yom ha-Shoah is a day that we all need to commemorate to ensure that this never happens again, and that next generations can freely be able to celebrate their religion, whatever it is. Whether you’re Jewish, whether you’re Muslim, whether you’re Sikh—it’s incredible, in our country, in our nation, that we can celebrate our religions freely, without persecution.

With that, Speaker, I’d like to ask everyone in the Legislature to commemorate Yom ha-Shoah this year and look at events around their community so that this never happens again.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): That concludes our members’ statements for this morning.

National Day of Mourning

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader has a point of order.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Mr. Speaker, if you seek it, you will find unanimous consent to allow members to make statements in recognition of April 28 being the Day of Mourning for persons killed or injured in the workplace, with five minutes allotted to Her Majesty’s loyal opposition, five minutes allotted to the independents as a group and five minutes allotted to Her Majesty’s government, followed by a moment of silence.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader is seeking the unanimous consent of the House to allow members to make statements in recognition of April 28 being the Day of Mourning for persons killed or injured in the workplace, with five minutes allotted to Her Majesty’s loyal opposition, five minutes allotted to the independents as a group, and five minutes allotted to Her Majesty’s government, followed by a moment of silence. Agreed? Agreed.

I recognize the member for Nickel Belt.

Mme France Gélinas: For a lot of people, the Day of Mourning is 31 years old; that is, in 1991, Canada officially recognized the Day of Mourning. But for people like me, who come from Sudbury, it is actually the 38th anniversary, because the Day of Mourning started in Sudbury in 1984.

I can tell you that right now, the MPP from Sudbury, Jamie West, is at the Fraser auditorium giving his support to the workers who have died, the workers who have been made sick, the workers who were injured on the job, and we have been doing this for 38 years. We also reconnect to make sure that we fight for the living.

With me today in the gallery, behind me, are some visitors. There is Mr. Terry Byberg and his wife, Theresa. Terry was exposed to McIntyre Powder in the gold mines in Red Lake.

There is also Linda Lundström. Many of you will recognize her; she’s an iconic fashion designer. I just love her clothes, especially her coats. She is also the daughter of Rickard Lundström. Mr. Lundström was exposed to McIntyre Powder in the Red Lake gold mines, and he ended up with Parkinson’s and silicosis.

There’s also Merna Fatohi and her father, Nizar Fatohi.

We have Jim Hobbs Jr. Jim is the namesake and only son of Jim Hobbs Sr., who was exposed to McIntyre Powder in the uranium mines in Elliot Lake. Prior to his death in 2017, Mr. Hobbs suffered from Parkinson’s disease, COPD and early-stage Alzheimer’s. Jim Hobbs Sr. is the inspiration for the McIntyre Powder Project.

We also have Jessica Rogers. Jessica was the much-loved granddaughter of Jim Hobbs Sr. and the daughter of McIntyre Powder Project founder Janice Hobbs Martell. Janice is also there with us. She is the daughter of Jim Hobbs Sr. and the founder of the McIntyre Powder Project. Janice is attending today for her dad and the McIntyre Powder Project miners. They came here this morning in the hopes that they would receive an official apology from the government.

Let me take you back a little bit, Speaker. Let me tell you a little bit about what the McIntyre aluminum powder is all about. For about 36 years, more than 25,000 Ontario mine workers were forced to breathe a finely ground aluminum dust known as McIntyre Powder. Before the start of each and every shift, the doors to the dry—the dry is kind of a change room in a mine—were closed shut. They were sealed. The ventilators were turned off, and a mist of fine aluminum dust was pumped into the room. It made the air turn black. The miners were sealed inside and were told to breathe deeply so that the dust could coat their lungs and protect them. The workers who refused to do this were fired. For 36 years, these miners were told that breathing in McIntyre Powder would protect them from harm; unfortunately, it did not. It hurt them. Some of them experienced immediate health effects. Many of them had long-term health effects. This is not fair. This could have been prevented.

They came to the Legislative Assembly in the hopes of getting an apology from the government, from all of us, for the mistakes of the past, for the harms that we caused to those 25,000 miners, as well as their families and their friends. Some of them are aging out—the time to issue this apology is more and more important.

I thank our visitors for coming today. I think the members of this House—to think about the importance of issuing an apology. The government knew that the McIntyre Powder was dangerous, and they were very tardy in acting—if at all. We owe them an apology.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I recognize the member for Ottawa South.

Mr. John Fraser: It’s an honour to rise and say a few words today about the National Day of Mourning.

In Ottawa South, on August 10, 1966, the Heron Road Bridge collapsed—it took 160 feet of bridge, half-set concrete, fell 60 feet. It’s the worst construction accident in Ontario’s history. Fifty-five people were injured. Nine people died. There’s a big stone right beside it that marks a memorial. Thousands of people drive by it every day. It’s great that it’s there, but we need to remind ourselves of what happened and what it meant to those families. So I want to read some names here of people who didn’t come home.

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Leonard Baird was 55. He left behind a wife.

Clarence Beattie was 31. He had five children, ages three to nine.

Jean Paul Guerin was 35. He was the father of six children, ages one to 11.

Omer Lamadeleine was 51. He was the father of 12 children, including a daughter who was to be married on the Saturday following the bridge collapse.

Edmund Newton was 50. He was the father of six children.

Lucien Regimbald was 52. He didn’t die right away; he died months later due to the injuries he sustained.

Dominic Romano was 36. He was the father of two children, ages nine months and two years.

Raymond Tremblay was 22. He was to be married in the fall.

Joao Viegas had just moved to Canada from Portugal. He lived with his wife in Ottawa.

All of our families expect us to come home from work. For those nine families and 55 others—their lives were affected permanently. So it’s important for us to remember, as legislators, when we’re looking at things like workplace safety, when we’re looking at things like WSIB and workplace insurance, that we ensure we have a balance in the approach we take so that we can make sure that enough money is being put into prevention; that, quite frankly, enough money is being put into covering everyone, no matter who they work for. If people are doing the same job in different places, why aren’t they covered? Why do we do that? That’s successive governments. We need to look at that.

My friend the member from Niagara is always talking about deeming. He’s got a point. We have to look at that.

While it’s important for us today to mourn and remember the things that have happened in the past, we actually have to look to the future and resolve to fix some of those things that really need to be fixed.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development.

Hon. Monte McNaughton: I appreciate the opportunity today to rise and recognize the National Day of Mourning. As the member from Nickel Belt said, on April 28 of each year we remember those who died, became sick or were injured on the job. This day was established in 1984 to commemorate the workers and their families affected by workplace tragedies. We pause to think about our relatives, friends and neighbours who went to work but didn’t come home. Their lives will be celebrated, their contributions will be honoured, and their absence will be mourned. All of our thoughts and prayers are with those families today, friends of theirs—community members who were either injured or killed in a workplace in Ontario.

Our government is doing everything we can to make sure workers can return home safely to their loved ones at the end of every day.

Under our government, we’ve hired 100 new health and safety inspectors, bringing our inspectorate to the largest in provincial history.

I also want to thank my former parliamentary assistant, the member from Burlington, who passed the occupational health and safety awareness day act in 2021—which will be marked again on Tuesday of next week. I want to thank all of the government members who supported that important piece of legislation.

Most recently, in our second Working for Workers bill, we passed new measures to keep workers safe.

Between March 2020 and January 2021, 2,500 people died from opioids. That is why our government has made it the law for naloxone kits to be in any workplace where there’s a risk of an opioid overdose. This means thousands of employers in all industries will soon have life-saving naloxone kits on-site.

Our latest legislation also takes action to crack down on those who treat health and safety as a cost of doing business. Ontario’s fines for companies that don’t put safety first are now the highest in Canada. With fines of up to $1.5 million, we’re sending a clear message to law-breakers: Your time is up.

Our government is also working for workers by making unprecedented moves to ensure those who are injured or develop illnesses due to occupational hazards are fully supported in Ontario. To highlight a few examples—we’ve invested $6 million for the Occupational Cancer Research Centre to help scientists identify workplace cancers and exposures to harmful substances, and $1.8 million for the McIntyre Powder Project.

Most notably, we have stepped up to guarantee compensation for workers who have suffered unfairly as a result of exposure to McIntyre Powder. While other governments in the past of all different stripes didn’t recognize it, we did. I’m proud to say that these miners and their families will now be automatically approved for related claims with the WSIB. And I have to say to Janice, specifically, that one of my proudest moments as the Minister of Labour was making that phone call to you, to thank you for your advocacy on behalf of your father, on behalf of all of those miners impacted. I’m proud to say justice will be served.

And McIntyre Powder was just the start.

No worker in Ontario should have to wait 40 years to receive compensation. That’s why I’ve launched the first-ever full review of Ontario’s occupational illness system. This fully independent review will be tasked with finding concrete solutions to the issues raised by the Occupational Disease Reform Alliance. It will review the best scientific data and evidence available to help organizations like the WSIB make the right decisions. We need the data and evidence to expand the list of diseases that are presumed to be work-related.

I’ve personally met on multiple occasions with members of the Occupational Disease Reform Alliance, including their chair, Sue James; I know members of my ministry team have done the same, and so has our new president and CEO at the WSIB. We’ve had productive conversations, and I look forward to continuing our working relationship to improve the lives of injured workers in Ontario.

Working with our new leadership at the WSIB, we’re laser-focused on building a better agency that works for workers and employers. That’s why I’ve directed the WSIB to increase payments to injured workers from 85% to 90% of earnings before injury. And it’s why we’re planning to move the WSIB to London. This move will save money.

In closing, we’re going to continue every single day to work for workers in this province, to ensure that they’re fairly compensated when they’re impacted by workplace disease.

Mr. Speaker, every worker in this province deserves to come home safely at the end of every day, and that’s our government’s top priority.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to ask members to now rise for a moment’s silence.

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The House observed a moment’s silence.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Members may take their seats.

The member for Nickel Belt has informed me that she has a point of order.

Mme France Gélinas: Thank you, Speaker. I seek unanimous consent to move a motion on behalf of the member for Sudbury to allow the House to issue statements of apology to Ontario’s mine workers who were subjugated to the inhalation of McIntyre Powder and for the negative health effects that the exposure had on the victims and their families; that the question be put without debate or amendment; and that the vote on the motion not be deferrable.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Ms. Gélinas has sought the unanimous consent of the House to move a motion on behalf of the member for Sudbury to allow the House to issue statements of apology to Ontario’s mine workers who were subjugated to the inhalation of McIntyre Powder and for the negative health effects that the exposure had on the victims and their families; that the question be put without debate or amendment; and that the vote on the motion not be deferrable. Agreed?

Hon. Paul Calandra: On a point of order—the same point of order.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader on a point of order.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I think on this one, I’m going to speak directly to the people in the gallery who are here, through you, Mr. Speaker.

An apology of the House is one of the highest things that we can do. It is one of the most important things that we can do.

As I mentioned to the member yesterday, as House leader, it is incumbent upon me to help organize the business of the day. I was only made aware of this request yesterday.

When we do something like this, as the Minister of Labour has highlighted and as the members have highlighted—something this important needs to be done in an appropriate fashion, with the consultation of the members, with the families and with those who are impacted by it.

The families do deserve an apology, absolutely, but we can’t do it in less than 24 hours. I will need more time to do it that way so that we can properly honour the families and the victims. It is because of that, as I mentioned to the member yesterday, that I will not support this motion today. But they have my word, as I said yesterday, that when this House does resume in the next Parliament, we will honour the families appropriately and we will do it together.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Agreed? I heard a no.

COVID-19 deaths

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I understand the member for Timiskaming–Cochrane has a point of order he wishes to raise.

Mr. John Vanthof: I seek unanimous consent of the House to observe a moment’s silence for the 189 Ontarians who have succumbed to COVID-19 since we last acknowledged victims of the pandemic on April 14.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Vanthof is seeking the unanimous consent of the House to observe a moment’s silence for the 189 Ontarians who have succumbed to COVID-19 since we last acknowledged victims of the pandemic on April 14. Agreed? Agreed.

Members will please rise.

The House observed a moment’s silence.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Members may take their seats.

Introduction of Visitors

Mr. John Vanthof: It’s a great honour for me to introduce my nephew Max Coomans, who is visiting us for the first time from the Netherlands and who is actually job-shadowing me today. He’s here with his father, Bram. I’m glad that he can see that I actually have this job; it’s not just me on Facebook.

Welcome to Canada.

Mr. John Fraser: Speaker, I’d like to welcome Janine AlHadidi, my OLIP intern who has been with me this winter session. She has been a great help. She has helped me brush up a bit on my Arabic, which still needs a lot of brushing up on. I just want to say thank you—shukran—to Janine for everything that she has done.

Mr. Will Bouma: Before there was cadet week—thank you to the member from Haldimand–Norfolk—I would host cadet day here at the Legislature.

I would like to introduce to the House, from the Navy League Cadet Corps: Admiral Landymore, Petty Officer First Class Ethan Arnold, Petty Officer First Class Sarah Bauman, and Lieutenant Commander Michael Pigeon.

From the Royal Canadian Sea Cadet Corps: Admiral Nelles, Chief Petty Officer Second Class Brandon Barnard, Petty Officer Second Class Brianna Hietapakka, and Lieutenant James Messecar.

From the 104 Starfighter Squadron Royal Canadian Air Cadets: Sergeant Bhumi Shah, Sergeant Logan Amaral, and Lieutenant Celina Corner.

And from the 2659 Royal Canadian Army Cadets: Chief Warrant Officer Peyton Gurney, and Master Warrant Officer Thoreyn Jorgensen.

Welcome to the people’s House.

Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: I’d like to recognize page Adele Burnie from Parkdale–High Park and give a warm welcome to her mother, Amanda Moore, who is at question period today.

Also attending from our riding: John Spekkens, who is the grandfather of page Noëlla Bellemore. He is joined by her mother, Lorraine Spekkens, as well. Welcome.

Hon. Stan Cho: I want to welcome June Hur and her husband, Bosco Tung, to the Legislature. June is a bestselling and critically acclaimed author who has been nominated twice for the prestigious Edgar Awards and featured on Forbes, NPR, KBS and CBC. Although she and her family recently moved to Scarborough, she lived in Willowdale for a long time, where she wrote three of her four books. June has a three-year-old daughter, and she is expecting a son in July.

Congratulations, and welcome to Queen’s Park.

Mr. Percy Hatfield: I don’t know if they’ve made their way to the gallery yet—I met earlier today with the older and wiser brother of the member from Essex. Mike Natyshak is a former NHL player. He played for the Quebec Nordiques, and his wife, Amy, is a prominent lawyer in Toledo.

Welcome to Queen’s Park.

Mr. Stephen Blais: I’d like to recognize and welcome page Alexander Brunet-Crooks from Orléans and his very proud mom, Marie-Claude Brunet, who is with us in the gallery this morning.

Mr. Stephen Crawford: I’d like to welcome the Fabiano-Willet family, who are here from Oakville supporting their son Adam, who is a page today. Welcome.

Mr. Rick Nicholls: I’d like to welcome to the gallery today Rev. Charles Lyons. Charles has offered a lot of wisdom and insight to many of the members here through his knowledge and his practice of Christianity.

I want to thank you and welcome you here. Thank you, Charles.

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Mr. Michael Parsa: I’d like to welcome to the Legislature young Oliver Royal from Barrie–Innisfil, with his lovely mom, the member of provincial Parliament from Barrie-Innisfil.

Mr. Chris Glover: I’d like to welcome to the Legislature Sam Hamilton, a resident of Spadina–Fort York.

I’d also like to welcome page Molly’s parents to the Legislature.

Hon. Jane McKenna: I just want to say a heartfelt thank you so much to Peter Turkington, who has worked in my office for the last four years. Thank you so much. I couldn’t have done it without you. And today being my last day, I’m emotional, so I’m sure he’s ready to get a box of Kleenex for me.

Ms. Mitzie Hunter: It’s my pleasure to welcome to the Legislature page Adele Burnie and her mother, Mandy Moore, who I’m sure is watching right now.

Mr. Vijay Thanigasalam: I would like to welcome and recognize my OLIP intern, Alessia Rao. Thank you for the incredible work.

Also, I would like to welcome my good friend Kenny to the Legislature.

Hon. Lisa MacLeod: I’d like to welcome my constituency staff. My long-time assistant Patricia Sloan is here today. Larry Harding, who is councillor Jan Harder’s husband—so often is referred to as my father, but he’s not. Chantal Guindon is here.

And I have a special welcome for Pavlo Kucher, a young man from Ukraine who has been working in my office. His parents are, right now, in a bomb shelter, and his grandfather, who is 78 years old, is on the front lines. Slava Ukraini. Heroyam slava.

Ms. Jill Andrew: This morning, I’d like to say a big thank you to all the pages, and I’d like to welcome all the children who are at Queen’s Park. Welcome, children, to Queen’s Park.

Legislative pages

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m now going to ask our pages to assemble for their introductions.

It is now my honour to introduce this group of legislative pages, the final group of legislative pages, it would appear, in the 42nd provincial Parliament. We’re delighted to have them here.

From the riding of Beaches–East York, Noëlla Bellemore; from Essex, Alexandria Booth; from Orléans, Alexander Brunet-Crooks; from Parkdale–High Park, Adele Burnie; from Thornhill, Matthew Carnide; from Markham–Stouffville, Alexander Chau; from Oakville, Adam Fabiano; from Etobicoke North, Abeera Islam; from King–Vaughan, Samreen Khurram; from Etobicoke–Lakeshore, Natalie Koenig; from University–Rosedale, Colin Plantiveau-Oger; from Burlington, Sophie Sowery; and from Willowdale, Clara Yeung.

Thank you very much for your service as legislative pages.

Applause.

Question Period

Health care funding

Mr. John Vanthof: My question is to the Premier.

According to the independent watchdog called Polimeter, the Premier kept just 37% of his promises over the last four years. When I came home from school with a 37% mark on a test, it wasn’t a very proud day for me.

When it comes to public health care, instead of fixing the hallway medicine left to the Premier by the Liberals, things actually got worse. Wait times for Ontarians in hospitals have grown for vital surgeries and procedures—hospitals that were over capacity even before the pandemic.

Why did the Premier break his promise to Ontarians—the promise he made to end hallway health care?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To reply, the government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: That is really, really rich coming from the member opposite, because he has voted against every single measure that we have done to improve health care. He voted against building 58,000 new and upgraded long-term-care beds. He voted against adding 27,000 health care workers in our long-term-care homes. He has voted against the most massive rebuild of health care in provincial history. We’re building new hospitals in Niagara; he voted against it. A brand new hospital for Brampton—he voted against it. A new hospital, the largest hospital in Peel region—he voted against it. In Ottawa—he voted it against it. Every single measure that we have done to improve health care—he voted against it.

And to make matters worse, colleagues, when his party held the balance of power and could have ended the misery that was the previous Liberal government, what did they ask for? Nothing. They asked for nothing.

People know a strong, stable Progressive Conservative majority gets it done.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mr. John Vanthof: I didn’t really hear an answer in that.

The Premier also promised to reduce how long Ontarians would wait in ERs, but all this hallway medicine has meant emergency room wait times actually grew longer under his watch. In June 2018, the average wait was 14 hours in a hospital. Even before the pandemic, under this government’s watch, it was 16 hours.

Why hasn’t the government actually reduced ER wait times in hospitals in their four years?

Hon. Paul Calandra: Do you know what would have really been helpful, Mr. Speaker? When the NDP held the balance of power between 2011 and 2014, had they done the right thing and voted the Liberals out of office so that we could have started rebuilding health care then—that’s what would have been the right thing. So we have started right from the very beginning.

The member for Scarborough–Agincourt talked about emergency rooms. Do you know what he got? He got a brand new emergency room for his community. Although they voted against that, we didn’t stop there. We knew that Scarborough hospitals needed to have support. They voted against it. The previous Liberal government did nothing. Our Premier, our Minister of Health, this caucus, our Scarborough team—a billion dollars for health care in Scarborough.

You can build all the buildings you want, you can build all the facilities that you want, but if you don’t put nurses in those facilities, there’s no point. We’re putting nurses in facilities; new medical schools so that we can have—wait for it—more doctors to work in all of these brand new hospitals—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. The final supplementary.

Mr. John Vanthof: The Premier promised he would build more long-term beds—beds that should be staffed. A bed by itself without staffing isn’t a bed—in their 15 years of power, the Liberals only built 611. But the Financial Accountability Officer says that this government, the PCs, are years behind their own schedule, behind their own promise to build these beds, and won’t have enough staff to support them.

What matters more than words is results. Results matter.

Why is this government not keeping their promise to improve long-term care in Ontario?

Hon. Paul Calandra: I’m not sure if the member—he must be embarrassed. I don’t know why his leader is making him ask these questions, because we’ve added 58,000 new and upgraded beds in every part of the province—north, south, east, west, urban, and rural. We are adding long-term-care beds.

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He talks about the staff. We’re adding 27,000 additional health care workers. Now, wait for it, colleagues: The NDP put a proposal forward on long-term care. They want to get rid of 17,000—we’re saying 27,000; they only want to hire 10,000. Before we’ve even hired them, they want to lay off 17,000 PSWs. They don’t want to build long-term care, colleagues. They want to buy real estate. That is the big plan of the NDP and the Liberals.

So while we’re building long-term care all over the province, an $11-billion investment—do you know what that is? It’s the largest investment in Canadian history in long-term care. That’s what we’ve done, and that’s, unfortunately, what you voted against every single time.

Even beds in his own riding—he voted against.

Government’s record

Mr. John Vanthof: The PCs, before they got elected, also made promises about the cost of living. But they haven’t fixed those problems either.

They promised to reduce the cost of hydro to consumers—and they even had a number: 12%. “Vote for us, and we’re going to take your hydro bills down 12%.” First, we couldn’t figure out where they got the number, but now they’ve even told the Financial Accountability Officer they have no intention to lower electricity bills by 12% from 2018, even though that was their promise.

Why did the government break their promise to lower consumer hydro bills by 12%?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Energy to reply.

Hon. Todd Smith: I am so pleased to get this question this morning. Thank you to the member opposite for the question.

What the Financial Accountability Officer actually said in his report the other day is that we’re on pace to reduce electricity prices from the Liberals’ unfair hydro plan by 12% next year and by 23% by the end of the decade.

What we have brought to electricity customers in the province is stability, and that’s why we’re seeing the type of investment that we’re seeing in this province. The Liberals ran 350,000 manufacturing jobs south of the border or overseas. What we’ve seen since we got our electricity prices under control in Ontario is massive investment in our province—billion-dollar investments in LG Stellantis’s battery plant down in Windsor, thanks to the Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade and our Premier, Premier Ford; massive, billion-dollar investments in electric vehicle manufacturing platforms in locations across the province—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order.

Supplementary.

Mr. John Vanthof: What Ontarians have seen are massive speeches about dropping the price of electricity, but I don’t think they saw their electricity prices drop by 12%.

The PCs also said they would fix the cost of buying a home by increasing affordable housing, but they didn’t. Under this government’s watch, buying a home is twice as expensive as it was in 2018. And since 2018, the average cost of a rental home is up 192 bucks a month.

Instead of being laser-focused on fixing the housing crisis, the Premier again is breaking his promise to build affordable housing. Why, instead of fixing the crisis, did he make it worse?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing to respond.

Hon. Steve Clark: I’m actually not going to thank the member for the question, because Ontarians certainly don’t owe your party any thanks.

Every measure that our government has done since we set foot in this Legislature four years ago has been to help the housing supply crisis; to help protect people who are in rental housing; to support municipalities and grow community housing. Each and every time, we always know what New Democrats do: They always vote no. They always obstruct. I don’t think we’re going to ever see a New Democrat campaign on standing up for that person who wants to realize the dream of home ownership. We’ve passed 79 bills in this House since we became government; eight of them have been mine. Every single time, the NDP has tried to obstruct someone wanting to realize the dream of home ownership.

Shame on that member. Shame on their leader, Andrea Horwath, the queen of “no.” Shame on the—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock.

First of all, I’ll remind members, perhaps one last time, that we refer to each other either by our riding name or ministerial title, or perhaps “leader of the official opposition,” not by their personal names.

I’m actually going to ask the minister to withdraw.

Hon. Steve Clark: Withdraw.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order.

Start the clock.

Final supplementary.

Mr. John Vanthof: The PCs might have campaigned on these promises four years ago, but Ontarians haven’t seen the results. They didn’t get a government that made life more affordable—they talk about it; they didn’t do it—especially when people’s hydro bills and housing costs skyrocketed over the last four years. And they didn’t get a government that kept their promises—because the PCs only kept 37% of them; almost two out of the three things they said didn’t happen.

Ontarians need a government that will fix what’s broken.

Why has it been so hard for this government to simply do what you said you would do?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Speaker, I think when you go around the province and you speak to the people of the province of Ontario, they will tell you that this government has done more for the people of the province of Ontario than any government in generations.

Let’s talk about what we got done. The first thing that we did is that we removed the most vulnerable people from paying taxes. Imagine: They had the balance of power; they could have said, “Let’s take the most vulnerable off the tax rolls.” They didn’t do it. The LIFT tax credit—we got it done.

We knew we had to get people moving around the province, so do you know what we did? We built transit and transportation—roads, subways. They couldn’t get it done. We’re getting it done.

Thousands of jobs—we all remember the economy; it was a mess under the coalition of “no.” We brought back 500,000 jobs to the province of Ontario.

And do you know what? There are over 300,000 jobs that we need to fill because of the hard work of a strong, stable Progressive Conservative majority government. And after June 2, a strong, stable Progressive Conservative government—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. The next question—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock.

Members will take their seats. Order. I assume everyone wants to come into the chamber at 4 o’clock this afternoon.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order.

Start the clock.

The next question.

Government’s record

Ms. Catherine Fife: My question is to the Premier—but, clearly, the members on that side of the House haven’t been knocking on very many doors in the province of Ontario.

The government has broken so many promises that it’s hard to keep track; they did keep one, however—and that was cutting the services that Ontarians rely on. In fact, it was cuts across the board for this government—cuts to libraries, to legal aid, to the Indigenous Culture Fund, and even cuts to the innovative IT sector in Waterloo region, which creates jobs in the province.

But when it came to the 20% income tax cut that the PCs promised to bring in, in their third year, they just didn’t do it. You can chalk it up to just one more broken promise from this Premier and from this PC government.

Why did this government refuse to do the very things that they said they would do—including this very specific campaign promise for a tax cut? What are you going to say to the people now?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: The NDP will go out there and campaign and say that they’re for the little guy, right? But when we brought a proposal forward that would remove the lowest-income earners from paying taxes—the responsibility of paying taxes—so that they could get a helping hand and contribute even more to the economy, more to their family, do you know what they did? They voted against it.

When we reduced WSIB premiums for our small business owners by $2.5 billion, on the route to increasing supports for injured workers, they voted against it.

When we cut red tape and job-killing regulation—they wanted more; we got rid of it, and that’s why we are bringing back thousands of jobs in the province of Ontario.

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When the Minister of Energy cut hydro rates and cancelled the 19% increase that the Liberals wanted to bring in, they voted against it. They actually wanted to keep a carbon tax, and they fought so hard for cap-and-trade in the province of Ontario. Then they went to Ottawa and said, “Put it back on the people.”

We cut tolls.

We cut licence plate fees.

We’re making life more affordable, because a strong, stable, Progressive Conservative majority—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock again.

The outbursts are continuing. I realize there’s a lot of excitement in the House this morning, and I understand the reason, but we’re going to get through question period. I’m going to start calling people out by name, by riding name—the next person who can’t restrain themselves.

I apologize to the member for Waterloo, who has the floor.

Start the clock.

Ms. Catherine Fife: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

Back to the Premier: When the accountability group Polimeter added it all up, the PCs only kept 37% of their promises.

The budget is very, very late this year, but that didn’t stop the PCs from again breaking your own accountability promise to issue the Premier and the finance minister a penalty for a late budget. You said you would be different than the Liberals.

They failed to deliver a budget on time, and Speaker, this has real consequences for the agencies delivering services.

You are doing the exact same thing as the previous Liberal government by dropping a budget today and then going on tour. It will essentially be a work of fiction.

Instead of bringing in the tax cut in the third year of this government, the PCs, over the last four years, have cut services to health care, to education. You froze the minimum wage. You took $6,000 out of the pockets of the people of this province. Why was this three-year tax cut just one more of the promises that this government failed to keep?

How can you look in the eyes of the people of this province and say that you are on their side when you clearly are not?

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock again, please.

I’m going to ask the members to make their comments through the Chair, not directly across the floor.

I’m going to call the Minister of Labour to order.

Start the clock.

The response, government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Speaker, the NDP have already said that they would vote against the budget anyway. They haven’t even read it or heard it, and they already said that they would vote against it.

Do you know whose eyes I look into, Mr. Speaker? I look into the eyes of the over 500,000 people in this province who have the dignity of a job because of the work that the caucus behind me has done. That’s whose eyes I look into.

When we came to office, the Liberals, supported by this gang of members here, had decimated the economy. We needed to reignite the economy, and that is exactly what we have done. We are seeing jobs and investment come back to the province of Ontario like never before. The engine of the Ontario economy is humming. The engine of Confederation is humming. This is the best place to live, work, invest and raise a family. We are going to continue the job, because that’s what a strong, stable, Progressive Conservative majority government delivers for the people of the province of Ontario.

Transportation infrastructure

Mr. Norman Miller: My question is for the Minister of Transportation.

After 15 years of inaction under the previous Liberal government, our government is correcting their costly mistakes. That starts with getting shovels in the ground on critical infrastructure projects.

I know the minister is working hard to address gridlock in our province. Could she please tell us how the Bradford Bypass will benefit the people of Ontario?

Hon. Caroline Mulroney: I thank the member for Parry Sound–Muskoka for the question.

Under the leadership of our Premier, our government is getting it done and building the Bradford Bypass. Major highways are quickly filling up, and as the region’s population continues to grow, it only makes sense to get building.

The need for the Bradford Bypass was first identified at least 30 years ago, and it was championed by my predecessor Julia Munro for over two decades in this House. Today, that need has only become more urgent. Year after year, past Liberal governments have refused to invest in critical infrastructure. Drivers across this province suffer the consequences of their inaction each and every day. Decades of growing gridlock on the 400 and the 404 have hurt the GTA and made life harder for businesses and for farmers, too.

But the benefits of the project go even further. We expect the project to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in annual real GDP and support more than 2,600 jobs on average each year during construction.

I am so pleased with the support we’ve had—but the members opposite continue to say no.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question?

Mr. Norman Miller: Thank you to the minister for that answer.

As the minister said, the need for the Bradford Bypass was identified at least 30 years ago. Today, gridlock has become inescapable. I have to say, the bottom of Highway 400 has among the worst gridlock anywhere. This is the cost of the Liberals endlessly saying no to investing in much-needed infrastructure.

Of course, I won’t be driving to Toronto nearly as often—but I know that taking the Bradford Bypass to the 404 and the DVP would take time off the trip for anyone coming down the 400 into Toronto.

Could the minister tell us how the Bradford Bypass fits into the government’s broader plan to fight gridlock?

Hon. Caroline Mulroney: Thank you again to the member for the question.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to fighting gridlock.

Our government is making historic investments in transit, roads, highways and bridges. And we’re getting shovels in the ground faster than any other government that has come before us. That’s because our government is getting it done.

Our plans to expand public transit and road infrastructure will provide more travel options for people, making it easier and quicker for them to get from point A to point B.

As we build Ontario’s transportation network, we’re building Ontario’s economy too—creating good-paying jobs and spurring growth in every corner of this province.

This is what progress looks like. That’s despite the best efforts of the members on the other side of this House, who will keep trying to block all of this good work. We are forging ahead, and we are building the Bradford Bypass.

Autism treatment

Ms. Marit Stiles: My question is for the Premier.

Not only did this Premier break his election promise to fix the Ontario Autism Program; he destroyed it. Then, he and his government spent years fighting with families who just needed help for their children. There are now 50,000 children stuck on a wait-list for these services, waiting years—years—while their developmental potential slips away.

Families are tired of this Premier’s broken promises and failures.

Why should any family trust this government when the Premier is clearly incapable and unwilling to help children with autism?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Children, Community and Social Services.

Hon. Merrilee Fullerton: Thank you to the member opposite for the opportunity to clarify the realities.

We have 40,000 children who are receiving services through the OAP right now. We have doubled the funding—larger amounts than any previous government ever before.

The previous government created a program where the majority of children would never have been able to receive access. We have created a program that was created by the community for the community. It is needs-based. It is more comprehensive than ever before, including occupational therapy, language and speech therapies, mental health supports. We have created an independent intake organization called Access OAP, which is now beginning to take more and more children in as I speak.

To the member opposite, I suggest that it’s our government that is fixing a system that was broken from the beginning and serving our children who are in need and our families in need.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Hamilton Mountain, come to order. The member for Scarborough–Guildwood, come to order.

Supplementary.

Ms. Marit Stiles: Speaker, that sure is revisionist history.

The Premier broke his promise to fix the autism program—that’s a fact—and tens of thousands of children and families are right now paying this price. From North Bay to Windsor to Ottawa to right here in Toronto, the wait-list is growing and growing. Thousands of children are losing that very precious window of time when therapy helps the most. By gutting that program instead of fixing it, this government chose to send thousands of families into crisis. We remember. It’s happening now.

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Mr. Speaker, families have given up on this government, but they know that New Democrats have their backs.

Why did the Premier break his promise to families of children with autism, and does he feel even a shred of remorse?

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Government side, come to order.

Minister of Children, Community and Social Services.

Hon. Merrilee Fullerton: The fact is that our government is serving almost five times as many children in this program.

The opposition had the chance to support children and youth with special needs, including autism, and they said no. They said no to the children who will be served by the Grandview children’s treatment centre in Ajax. They said no to the children who will be served at the Chatham-Kent children’s treatment centre and their families. They said no to the children who will be served by 1Door4Care at CHEO’s integrated treatment centre. They said no and voted against the largest investment to support children with special needs, including autism, in two decades. And they voted against these investments not once, but in two budgets.

Our government is supporting children with special needs, including children with autism. It’s why we doubled the OAP budget. We will continue the important work that we’ve been doing over the last few years to make sure that children in these vulnerable situations, with their families, get the support they need.

COVID-19 immunization

Mr. Rick Nicholls: My question is to the Premier.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Ontarians have seen the undermining of the democratic process by your government, which outsources decisions to unelected officials and bureaucrats.

Premier, democracy only works with elected public servants who represent their constituents. Sadly, the government has lost its way. This is paramount to a functioning democracy.

On September 1, 2021, Dr. Nancy Whitmore issued a notice to professions regarding vaccination exemptions. Doctors were flooded with patients who felt they, for medical reasons, could not take the gene therapy. Doctors were banned from writing medical exemptions, notwithstanding their expert medical opinions, understanding that the CPSO had banned them from doing so. It’s critical to note that doctors are legally bound to uphold consent requirements. Doctors were forced to ignore the legally voluntary consent requirements when patients presented under coercion from their employer.

Premier, will your government reverse this decision and allow doctors, who know better than government and bureaucrats, to issue exemptions for patients deemed to be at risk?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Speaker, I think the first part of his question is actually more important than the second part. He talked about democracy.

Let me just say, I might disagree with a lot of members, including that member over there, but this place has been working right through the pandemic. Even when the opposition said that we shouldn’t be here, this Premier said, “We’re coming back in the summer.” You remember it, colleagues: We came back in summer 2020, 2021, and we got things done for the people of the province of Ontario. This is one of the only Legislatures that continued to meet in person, that continued to allow the votes of its representatives right here; we continued on committees.

It is because of the hard work, of course, of the professionals who help us run this place, but I am very proud of the progress we have made—close to 80 bills that were passed by this government, a countless number of private members’ bills that were passed.

I’m really proud of the work that this Parliament has done, even if I disagree always with the member opposite, and those members as well.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Member for York Centre, come to order. Member for Hamilton West–Ancaster–Dundas, come to order.

Supplementary.

Mr. Rick Nicholls: I’m not surprised that the government House leader would actually disagree with me; I’m not surprised at that at all.

Back to the Premier: Patients must always be free to either give consent to or refuse treatment without duress or coercion. Anything other than that may be deemed no consent at all and therefore may be successfully repudiated.

Dr. Whitmore’s exemption policy has led to the suspension of Ontario doctors and court actions against them for simply practising the legal medical ethics they are bound to.

Dr. Moore noted back in October 2021 that the number of exemptions were too high. Well, a family doctor knows what’s best for their patient, not an unelected official.

If you’re going to mandate anything, mandate personal choice. Don’t play the game of “exemptions are too high,” and don’t strong-arm doctors by threats of risk of losing their licence to practise medicine. The Hippocratic oath of “do no harm” is being ignored.

Premier, how is it that CPSO demands Ontario practitioners to forgo their legal obligations, medical ethics and oaths when these are basic principles of the relationship of trust between patient and practitioner?

Hon. Paul Calandra: Of course, it is the advice of medical professionals that we have been taking since the start of the pandemic. That is what has guided us the entire time, and that is why Ontario has had better results in combatting COVID-19 than almost any other jurisdiction. We have one of the highest vaccination rates in the world. I am very proud of that.

It is because of the policies of this government that we are seeing jobs, investment and opportunity come back to Ontario. People who look at other jurisdictions are saying, “We want to be here in the province of Ontario.” Why? It’s because the government has made investments in health care; it’s because we’re building transit and transportation; it’s because we’re cutting red tape. And despite the pandemic, we have grown the economy with over 500,000 jobs. That is what we continue to be focused on, while we fight COVID-19 and hopefully put it in the rear-view mirror.

We are going to continue to build a strong economy for all of the people of the province of Ontario.

Public transit

Mr. Aris Babikian: My question is for the Associate Minister of Transportation.

For years, residents in Scarborough have hoped to be better linked to transit that will get them where they need to go. That’s why I was excited when our government announced support for the Scarborough subway extension. The extension would finally enable Scarborough riders from vibrant communities in Agincourt, north Scarborough, Guildwood and West Rouge to connect more easily to Toronto’s rapid transit system.

The GTA is a world-class urban metropolis, but we do not have world-class transit because the Liberals twiddled their thumbs for 15 years, the last four years of which involved the Del Duca-Wynne Liberals building zero transformational transit projects.

Speaker, I know this government is finally getting it done. Can the Associate Minister of Transportation please tell this House about the government’s progress on the Scarborough subway extension?

Hon. Stan Cho: That member deserves a lot of credit, because his hard work is paying off for the people of Scarborough.

We recently issued a request for proposals to three qualified teams for the design and delivery of station, rail and systems work on the subway extension in Scarborough. This is a crucial milestone for the three-stop extension—bringing reliable, modern transit to the communities in Scarborough. This extension will create approximately 3,000 jobs annually during construction, attract 105,000 daily boardings, and cut 10,000 tonnes of auto-related emissions per year. What’s more, the extension will make it easier to get in and out of the downtown core, all while replacing an aging line 3 with subway service that will be more reliable and provide greater capacity.

For 15 years, the Liberal-NDP coalition said no to the people of Scarborough—no for them to get from point A to point B.

Well, Speaker, with our $28.5-billion GTA transit plan, the largest transit expansion in Canadian history, we’re finally getting it done for the great people of Scarborough and beyond.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mr. Aris Babikian: Thank you to the associate minister for your response and for this terrific news for the people of Scarborough.

Speaker, with construction under way on the Scarborough subway extension, I cannot wait to see this project come to life, because it will be yet another invaluable asset to riders. People will finally be able to commute more quickly from Scarborough to the downtown core to work, and then back home to their loved ones.

Despite this, the Liberals and the NDP have again and again stood against this government’s historic plans for transit. How can Ontarians believe the Liberals or the NDP are serious about building transit?

With the GTA’s booming population, we cannot afford to delay any longer.

Can the associate minister please explain what would happen if we moved backward on transit and how this government’s historic transit plans will benefit the people of Ontario?

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Hon. Stan Cho: It’s important to remember that when the Del Duca-Wynne Liberals were in power, propped up by the NDP, they found every reason to say no to expanding transit. They waited until their last week in office, in fact, to put pen to paper on the Yonge North subway extension, they made a mess of the Crosstown, and they wanted the UP Express to operate as a relief line to downtown, instead of building a true relief line in the first place. Plus, when in office, the Del Duca-Wynne Liberals voted against the Scarborough subway extension—including the Liberal member from Scarborough–Guildwood, and this project benefits her constituents.

Even after we took office, the NDP and the Liberals voted against all four of our subway projects and said no to building these projects faster by voting against the Building Transit Faster Act.

Speaker, I think it’s important for the people of Ontario to remember, with an election coming, that the Liberals and NDP will always say no to transit, while our government is actually build the Ontario Line, the Yonge North extension, the Crosstown West extension and the Scarborough subway extension, because we are—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. The next question.

Tenant protection

Ms. Jill Andrew: My question is to the Premier.

This government promised to address the housing crisis but just couldn’t fix what the Liberals had broken. For renters, that meant keeping rent control in place, at the bare minimum. Instead, the PCs broke their promise to maintain this as the status quo and quickly exempted all new rental units, allowing for huge rent increases year to year without any way of stopping them.

This means that in Toronto alone, one in four, or roughly 650,000, people are struggling to pay the high cost of rent; that is 140,000 more than in 2018, when the PCs were elected.

Across Ontario, the average cost of rent increased by $192 a month. It’s a crisis for folks in every corner of our province.

My question is back to the Premier: Why did the PCs, the Conservative government, break their promise to keep the status quo on rent control? Why would they rip rent control out from underneath Ontarians who need it the most?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

Hon. Steve Clark: Well, Speaker, I’ll take this opportunity to correct the member opposite. Our government, in our fall economic statement in 2018, made good on our promise to protect existing tenants that we made in the 2018 election. But we did a lot more than that. We put forward a variety of reforms through countless pieces of legislation to protect tenants, to strengthen community housing, to provide our municipal partners with the dollars that they needed, in the midst of a global pandemic, to actually build capacity for community housing, to build capacity for supportive housing.

This member voted against a budget that resulted in policies that created the most rental housing construction in 30 years. How can she stand in this House when she opposed all of that beautiful construction—13,000 units last year, in this community alone? Countless times, this member has stood up and said one thing and done something different when it came time to vote.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question.

Ms. Jill Andrew: Speaker, 60% of folks in my home of Toronto–St. Paul’s are renters. They need rent control. For four years, I’ve heard their fears of being evicted, renovicted, demovicted, and of their rent skyrocketing far beyond what they can afford. For too many, this fear, created by the PC government, has become their reality. These are people who have built their lives and grown their families in St. Paul’s—people who have made this place their home for 40-plus years, people on fixed incomes, seniors. Each of them deserves a roof over their head and to stay in the communities they’ve built, especially, may I say, during a pandemic. They need real rent control. They needed this government, the Conservatives, to keep their promise, not break it.

My question is back to the Premier: How can Ontarians ever trust this government to live up to their next promises to fix the affordability crisis when we saw how quickly they abandoned their last ones?

Hon. Steve Clark: Speaker, I don’t know how this member can look her constituents in the eye after she voted against protections to tenants against renovictions; when she voted against measures that would help tenants and strengthen our community housing system; when every single member, including this member and her caucus—when we asked them to join us in our call to the federal government for our fair share, based on core housing needs, based on statistics that she herself has quoted in this House, to get that additional $490 million so we could continue the building that we’ve been able to do over the last two years. We know that there’s much more work to do, but this member and her party consistently have said no. I don’t know how they can look their constituents in the eye.

Long-term care

Ms. Mitzie Hunter: My question is to the Premier.

On March 11, 2020, I stood in this Legislature and asked your government to protect long-term care—to take the lessons from SARS and restrict access to long-term-care facilities as a first step to prevent the transmission of COVID-19, to protect our most vulnerable seniors. Unfortunately, your government did not heed my warnings, and the inaction contributed to the loss of loved ones as they got sick in homes in Scarborough and across Ontario.

The pandemic was a wake-up call that cannot be ignored. We are now at a moment when action is needed, just as March 11 was. We need to guarantee home care for anyone who needs it and end for-profit long-term care in Ontario.

Speaker, the Ontario Liberals have spoken up in this House and are ready to revolutionize elder care in Ontario.

Will the Premier stand with us and right this wrong?

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government side, come to order.

Government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Speaker, I don’t even know where to begin on that.

The lessons of the pandemic—it’s the lessons of SARS that the member should have learned. That’s why, when they came to office 15 years ago, they should have invested in long-term care—instead, they built 611 beds. Well, we’re building 58,000 new and upgraded beds. We’re getting the job done. They could have increased staffing; they didn’t.

Do you know what it reminds me of, Speaker? You probably remember, in the late 1990s, early 2000s, there was a song by a guy named Shaggy, and it went, “It wasn’t me.” Destroying long-term care—although Steven Del Duca sat at the cabinet table, it wasn’t him. Not fixing health care—it wasn’t Steven Del Duca.

But do you know what? We’ll get the job done for the people of the province of Ontario, because people in long-term care deserve it, and the people—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock.

I couldn’t hear the government House leader even though he’s speaking audibly, because there’s so much going on, on both sides of the House. So the House has to come to order.

Restart the clock.

Supplementary question.

Ms. Mitzie Hunter: Back to the Premier: My riding of Scarborough–Guildwood was the hardest hit in this pandemic. The tragic number of seniors lost and the pain that their families and loved ones went through and are still going through, particularly in long-term care, demands action today.

What was done by past Liberal, Conservative and NDP governments is no longer a cover for inaction today.

The Ontario Liberal plan to revolutionize elder care in Ontario will build 30,000 new long-term-care spaces and modernize 28,000 existing spaces, with a focus on smaller, community-based homes. We will guarantee home care for anyone who needs it, and we will end for-profit long-term care in Ontario. We will guarantee $25 an hour to PSWs and repeal the wage-capping Bill 124 and the sections of Bill 106 which gutted the Pay Equity Act.

Speaker, Ontario Liberals believe in investing in our seniors and in elder care.

Why is this Ford government determined to focus on the privatization of care and their for-profit donors on the eve of an election?

Hon. Paul Calandra: On the eve of an election? We have been at this since day 1. They’re going to build 58,000, they said. Well, guess what? We’ve already actually done it in the province of Ontario. It has been the focus of the government right from the beginning, including in her own riding. I announced a brand new, upgraded facility in her own riding; she voted against it. She also voted against the 27,000 additional health care workers and the four hours of care—she voted against it.

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Speaker, we’ve all been there—sometimes you break up with somebody, and you always start with, “It’s not you; it’s me.” But for Steven Del Duca, it’s the other way around: It’s not him; it’s you.

Losing jobs—“It wasn’t me, although I sat at the cabinet table,” Steven Del Duca says. “It was actually you.”

Not fixing long-term care—although Steven Del Duca sat at the cabinet table, it wasn’t him; it was you.

The people of the province of Ontario know that when it comes to getting the job done, a strong, stable Progressive Conservative majority—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock.

The member for Windsor West will come to order. The member for Scarborough–Guildwood will come to order. The member for Ottawa South will come to order. The Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing will come to order. The Minister of Energy will come to order. The member for Renfrew–Nipissing–Pembroke will come to order. And the Minister of Labour will come to order. Thank you.

Let’s start the clock.

The member for Brampton West.

Transportation infrastructure

Mr. Amarjot Sandhu: Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Transportation.

For decades, successive Liberal governments have refused to invest in badly needed infrastructure. Steven Del Duca and the Liberals knew that massive population growth was coming to the GTHA. They knew that our major highways were quickly reaching capacity. They knew that gridlock was only getting worse. And what did they choose to do about it? Nothing.

My question to the Minister of Transportation is, can she please tell us what this government is doing to tackle the gridlock crisis that the Liberals let fester for so long?

Hon. Caroline Mulroney: Thank you to the member from Brampton West for the question.

Speaker, I am so proud that our government is doing what the Liberals failed to do. We’re getting it done for the people of Ontario and we’re building Highway 413. This highway will cut commute times for GTA drivers by 30 minutes each way. This could be the difference between sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic or sitting at home at dinner with your family. But this highway offers so much more than just relief from gridlock. It will support more than 3,500 jobs on average each year during construction, and it will generate up to $350 million in annual real GDP. Yet all we hear from the Liberals and the NDP is no to building it, no to jobs, and no to growth.

Members on that side of the House, Speaker, will tell you that we have to choose between highways and transit. That simply isn’t true, because our government is saying yes to both, and we’ll get it done.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mr. Amarjot Sandhu: Thank you to the minister for the response.

Mr. Speaker, the NDP and Liberals have demonstrated time and time again that they’re opposed to new highways. All we hear from them is no all the time. They say no to building Highway 413. But as the minister rightfully pointed out, the Highway 413 project is so much more than just a new highway.

Can the minister please elaborate on what we are doing differently from the last Liberal government?

Hon. Caroline Mulroney: Thank you to the member for the question.

Speaker, Steven Del Duca and the Liberals could have addressed gridlock by building Highway 413. Instead, they found every reason to say no, keeping drivers stalled in endless hours of bumper-to-bumper traffic that all of us know all too well.

Every single day, Ontarians are paying the price for Liberal inaction, which the NDP supported year after year.

But I want to reassure everyone that on this side of the House, we will not be repeating the mistakes of the Liberal government. We are saying yes to building Highway 413. GTA drivers are tired of wasting their precious time stuck behind the wheel, and frankly, they deserve better. We know that the Liberals and the NDP will do everything in their power to stop this critical project from getting built. But our government will not let that happen. We are getting it done.

Government’s record

Mr. Gurratan Singh: My question is to the Premier.

Let’s take a walk down memory lane. Instead of lowering car insurance rates and making life more affordable, the Conservative government, just like the Liberals before them, helped their friends in the insurance industry rip off Ontarians. Every single year that they have been in power, they have approved increases to car insurance. They even allowed billion-dollar car insurance companies to discriminate against Ontarians and charge them higher rates based on where they live.

Will the Conservative government finally admit, once and for all, that they failed Ontarians, they broke their promise and they refused to lower car insurance rates?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Well, I’m sure the people in his riding are very grateful for the fact that under our watch, insurance rates have actually come down in Brampton.

I’m with him, though—colleagues, let’s take a walk down memory lane, shall we? Let’s take it all the way back to 2011, when the NDP had the balance of power and could have forced the Liberals to build a brand new hospital in Brampton. Did they? No.

Let’s go back down memory lane again. They could have ensured that there was greater GO Transit service in Brampton. Did they? No. They could have ensured that the 413 was built so that the people in his community could get home better and there could be more investments. Did he? No. He could have lowered taxes for the people of Brampton. Did he? No.

I love going down memory lane, because I know that when I look back at the last four years, I’ve got trains being built, I’ve got subways, I’ve got jobs and economic activity. I’ve got a brand new hospital, thanks to the President of the Treasury Board, thanks to the parliamentary assistant to infrastructure. I know that Brampton has a new medical school. And the only thing I can say is that he voted against every single one of those measures.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order. The government side, come to order.

Supplementary question.

Mr. Gurratan Singh: Back to the Premier: On the subject of broken promises, for 15 years, the Liberal government underfunded Brampton’s health care, creating a crisis, but instead of making things better, the Conservatives have made it worse. The Conservatives have voted no to fully funding Brampton Civic, our city’s only hospital. They voted no to building a second hospital with an emergency room. They voted no to building a third hospital in Brampton. The Conservative Minister of Health herself admitted that she doesn’t even believe that Brampton deserves three hospitals.

Will the Conservative government finally admit once and for all that they have failed Brampton and they have failed to end our health care crisis?

Interjection.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, come to order.

To reply on behalf of the government, the President of the Treasury Board.

Hon. Prabmeet Singh Sarkaria: In the past four years, there has been no government that has invested more in Brampton than the government of Premier Doug Ford. This means a new hospital for the city of Brampton, with over 250 beds, and a 24/7 emergency room. The members opposite voted no to that. This means a new medical school, Ryerson medical school, right in the city of Brampton. Unfortunately, the members opposite voted no to that. This means building over 600 new long-term-care beds in the city of Brampton. Unfortunately, the members opposite said no to that. And to address transportation needs, critical infrastructure, we’re building Highway 413. That means over 3,500 good-paying jobs during construction and over $350 million of GDP for the region. Unfortunately, the members opposite have voted no to that.

The people of Brampton will support this government and our record investments to support—

Interjection.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Stop the clock.

The member for Niagara Falls, come to order.

Start the clock.

The next question.

Government’s record

Mrs. Belinda C. Karahalios: My question is for the Premier.

Recently, the Premier stated at a chamber of commerce event that government should create the environment where business thrives and not be in the business of creating jobs. But once again, the rhetoric of the government doesn’t match the policies of this government.

For the last four years, manufacturing jobs have drastically been lost in Ontario under this government. And for the last few weeks, this government has been promising over $10 billion in new spending, with hundreds of millions of dollars in promises being made every single day. Included in those spending promises are hundreds of millions of dollars being promised to mega corporations—to do what? Exactly what the Premier says government should not do: create jobs dependent on government funding.

What is the government’s plan to create the environment to grow Ontario’s economy that does not include billions of dollars in government spending?

Interjection.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Energy, come to order.

To reply on behalf of the government, the Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade.

1200

Hon. Victor Fedeli: Speaker, when we first took office and we saw the devastation of 300,000 jobs that had left Ontario, Premier Ford asked us to put together a plan. Our caucus put together a plan that lowered the cost of doing business by $7 billion annually by reducing WSIB premiums by $2.5 billion and by putting in an accelerated capital cost, which lets businesses write off their expenses of their machinery in the first year—a billion-dollar savings. We saved $7 billion, and what did that do? It put 500,000 people to work in our first term—300,000 before the pandemic, and 200,000 men and women went to a job for the first time since the pandemic.

Speaker, 500,000 jobs have been created because we created the climate—we’ve created that whole spirit of Ontario that the Premier talks about every day.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mrs. Belinda C. Karahalios: There are two things that are consistent about this government: The rhetoric never matches the policies, and this government has simply copied the philosophy of the Liberal government that preceded it.

After four years, this government has not kept one single promise it made with regard to taxes or Ontario’s economy, including:

—failing to reduce electricity rates; rates have gone up;

—failing to reduce annual deficit spending; we have seen the largest deficit spending ever;

—failing to reduce taxes; taxes actually went up when this government implemented an industrial carbon tax; and

—failing Ontario’s manufacturing sector, with hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs lost over the last four years.

Based on its track record, can this government tell us why Ontarians should believe that the government has any interest in delivering any promises it makes over the next 30 days, starting with today’s fiscal projections?

Hon. Victor Fedeli: Well, I can tell you that when we got elected, we promised we would turn this economy around, and that is exactly what happened in the province of Ontario.

We saw an auto sector, thanks to Liberals, backed by the NDP, that was in decline and ready to leave in Ontario—in fact, some did leave Ontario. And we stood up and brought $7 billion in lowering the cost of doing business.

Ford, General Motors, Stellantis, Honda and Toyota all have made multi-billion dollar investments. In fact, in the last 17 months, there has been $12 billion—unprecedented in the history of Ontario—of new investment.

And 2,500 men and women are going to go to a job at the Stellantis plant in Windsor, where they’re going to make batteries, for the first time ever in the history of Canada. We’ll be making them right here in Ontario, all because we’ve lowered the cost of doing business and supplied the climate for businesses to want to come here—and they’re coming here in droves.

Employment standards / Small business

Mr. Faisal Hassan: My question is to the Premier.

My riding of York South–Weston is home to many front-line and essential workers. Those are workers who put their health and their family’s health on the line as they helped carry us through the pandemic, delivering the goods, services, education and health care we too often take for granted. Far too many of these workers are doing low-wage and part-time work with no benefits. The reality of one person working three part-time jobs to feed their family is nothing to be proud of, especially when this government promised to make things better.

Where is the plan from this government to raise wages and address the serious situation of part-time work being the norm in corporate Ontario?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To reply, the Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development.

Hon. Monte McNaughton: Well, I’m proud that our government is working for workers every single day. Everything that we’re doing is about ensuring that workers in Ontario have bigger paycheques, more take-home pay to support themselves and their families; to improve workplace protections and health and safety on the job; to ensure that every worker in this province has an opportunity for better employment and for better jobs.

In fact, I’m proud to say, for the first time in the history of Ontario—we’re launching Better Jobs Ontario. We’re ensuring that people on social assistance, the 834,000 people today who aren’t working in this province, are going to have up to $28,000 per year to get training for bigger paycheques to support themselves and their families.

I think of the work that we’re doing to be the very first place in North America to ensure that every worker in Ontario has benefits, like health and dental and vision benefits.

We’re going to continue working for workers—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you very much.

Interjection.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Member for Windsor West, come to order.

Supplementary question.

Mr. Faisal Hassan: Back to the Premier: Another critical issue in York South–Weston has been the lack of support for small businesses. I have heard from countless family-owned businesses telling of their frustration with the small business grant relief program. These owners have dealt with significant delays in getting approved and a lack of communication in general.

When the Auditor General reported this government delivering millions of dollars to ineligible businesses, this government shrugged this off and declared no interest in collecting $210 million in money that was wrongly allocated.

The government promised to make things easier for small businesses, but they broke that promise, Mr. Speaker. Through you, how does this government think the gross mismanagement of the small business grant program is acceptable or any way to run a government, let alone a business?

Hon. Monte McNaughton: Well, again, every single day we’re building a stronger province for our small businesses and for our workers and families in every corner of this province.

I think about the thousands and thousands of small businesses today that are going to be receiving reimbursements and rebates from the WSIB. Mr. Speaker, $1.5 billion is going back to small businesses across the province. They’re going to invest in their people, grow their businesses, create more jobs.

But we’re working for workers as well. We’re ensuring that we’re recognizing international credentials, to become the first province in Canada to ensure that our immigrants are working in professions that they’ve studied so they have bigger paycheques to support themselves and their families. We’ve become the first place in North America to ensure that when workers go home at the end of the day, they can disconnect from work. We’re ensuring that workers from other provinces can come here and start work tomorrow, to ensure that we’re filling labour shortages.

We’re going to continue working for our small businesses and workers every day.

Préposés aux services de soutien personnel / Personal support workers

Mlle Amanda Simard: Monsieur le Président, ce premier ministre et son gouvernement ne veulent vraiment pas aider les préposés aux soins dans les centres de soins de longue durée. Ils ont créé une nouvelle catégorie de travailleurs encore moins bien rémunérés, les aides de services aux résidants, que les centres de soins de longue durée privés peuvent utiliser pour réduire davantage les salaires déjà très bas.

Le manque de personnel dans les centres de soins de longue durée est un problème sérieux, et nous, les libéraux de l’Ontario, allons fournir des suppléments pour combler la pénurie de main-d’oeuvre pour le travail par quarts et assurer une rémunération constante dans les soins à domicile et communautaires, les soins de longue durée et les hôpitaux, en plus du 25 $ de l’heure de base pour les préposés aux soins.

Le premier ministre peut-il expliquer pourquoi il ne fait, et ne fera, absolument rien pour remédier à cette situation et pourquoi il pense qu’une augmentation de salaire de 3 $ de l’heure est acceptable dans ces circonstances?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader to respond.

L’hon. Paul Calandra: Ce n’est pas vrai. Comme vous savez, nous avons fait beaucoup d’investissements dans le secteur. Nous avons augmenté de 27 000 les nouveaux travailleurs dans ce secteur. Les libéraux ont voté contre cette initiative, monsieur le Président.

We know that we had to rebuild long-term care; we knew that right from the beginning. In fact, before the campaign started, we knew that we had to get beyond the 611 beds that the Liberals—and do you know what their promise was in 2018? Do you know what they promised to do? Maybe build 5,000 if they got re-elected—5,000. Well, thank you very much. We’re building 58,000 new long-term-care beds. And we know that we have to do more. That’s why we’re adding 27,000 additional health care workers to get to four hours of care—something that they refused to do and would never do. They also voted against the pay increases for our PSWs.

We’ll get the job done, because that’s what a strong, stable Progressive Conservative majority government does.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mlle Amanda Simard: Well, the recycled lines from Stephen Harper are resuscitated.

The Premier keeps saying, “Let’s get it done.” Well, here is something he did get done: Long-term-care-home residents made up 64.5% of all COVID deaths during Ontario’s first and second waves, the highest in Canada and the OECD. Instead of building an iron ring around them like he promised, he built an iron ring around negligent long-term-care-home owners to protect them from getting sued.

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If that’s not enough, the Premier tossed out empty words that personal support workers are heroes, and he’s now promising an insulting $3-an-hour raise and other band-aid solutions, just to get past this election.

Then we have Bill 124 that tells PSWs, nurses and health care workers that, no, they’re not worth anything more than 1%.

So, Mr. Speaker, if this government is serious about treating them like heroes, will they do what we here are promising: raise PSW base pay to at least $25 an hour and provide mental health supports for all health professionals?

Hon. Paul Calandra: She spoke about Stephen Harper lines now. When she worked for the Stephen Harper government, she helped write some of those lines—but I digress.

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Francophone Affairs was actually in the member’s own riding announcing new long-term-care allocations—in the member’s own riding, I think over 120 beds, something that they didn’t do.

She calls the pay increase “insulting.” Imagine how insulted those same, hard-working PSWs must have been when, over 15 years, the Liberals ignored them.

Interjection.

Hon. Paul Calandra: The member for Ottawa South has hollered, “Oh, it’s temporary.” He voted against anything whatsoever.

In over 15 years, four mandates, what did they do? Nothing. If only they’d had that fifth mandate, they might have done it.

A strong, stable, Progressive Conservative majority government is getting the job done in all parts of the province—east, west, north, south, urban, and rural—and we’ll continue that after June 2.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): That concludes our question period for this morning.

42nd Parliament

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government House leader, I understand, has a point of order.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I rise on standing order 59 to outlay the order of business for next week, which is, of course, in flux, as you would you know, Mr. Speaker.

I just wanted to take a moment, first and foremost—the member from Timiskaming–Cochrane is one of our favourite members here. I will say this: He is one of the hardest-working, most valued members of that caucus. I want you to know that he does a great job and he’s an awesome member of Parliament. I wanted to thank him for that.

I also wanted to take an opportunity just to thank members on all sides. This has been a most different type of Parliament. It is not something that any of us thought we would have to deal with, but I think, despite the fact that we argue and we challenge, that’s what the whole point of this place is—to fight on behalf of the people. I think this Parliament, all members on all sides, have done a remarkably good job in doing that. I want to thank all of them, everybody, for their hard work.

I want to also wish everybody the best of luck over the next few months and, most importantly, to again thank all of the pages who have served in this place, and table officers and security. It has been amazing.

And you, Mr. Speaker—thank you very much for your hard work. Again, to your entire staff—this Parliament, I think, is a model. I’m not stretching it when I say that the work that this Parliament has done and the way we have behaved during COVID and the fact that we kept business going in this place for the people of the province of Ontario is a testament not only to all the people who work here to make it happen, but it is something that I think we can all be very, very, very proud of.

I want to again thank all members for everything that you’ve done on behalf of your constituents and on behalf of the people of the province of Ontario.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Timiskaming–Cochrane, point of order.

Mr. John Vanthof: Point of order: I take it, from the government House leader’s speech, that we’re not coming back, so I would also like to take this opportunity—on behalf of the official opposition.

This is a pretty great place to work. We work on behalf of the people of Ontario. We don’t always agree, and rightfully so. One of the things that we are most proud of, I think, on all sides of the House, is that we can disagree without repercussion. That is something, as we watch other parts of the world, that other parts of the world have to fight for.

Yesterday was the Dutch King’s birthday. I attended a reception hosted by the Dutch embassy, and I got to talk to the ambassador from Ukraine about what democracy means. Until you talk to someone like that, you don’t really understand how important it is. Yes, we hit each other across, but deep down we all want the same thing: the best for the people we represent, the best for all Ontarians. We couldn’t do it without the people who actually make Ontario work, the people who make this place work: the people in this House, the people who work outside this House, the people who keep this place running, and specifically for me, the people in the cafeteria.

Every job in this House and every job in Ontario, to me, is equal, because we all perform a vital task. If we don’t all do our tasks, the province lessens.

So, on behalf of the official opposition, thank you.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Ottawa South.

Mr. John Fraser: On behalf of our caucus, I’d like to thank you, Speaker, for putting up with us over the last four years—all of us; personally, myself as well, too.

I’d like to thank all of the people here in the assembly who do make this place a special place and allow us to do our jobs in an effective way. We couldn’t do it without each and every one of you, and I want to thank you on behalf of our caucus.

We have some pages with us here today—they’re here for a day, so we have to give them a good experience. Remember that, folks. They do get to do the budget.

I want to tell a very quick story. I may have already told this in here, but I’m old, so I can tell the same stories a couple of times. My colleague from Windsor–Tecumseh would know this story. I like to ask the pages, “What’s the most interesting thing about this place,” and usually it’s question period or it’s the architecture—I was hoping they’d say me, but they never do. I asked a page who is now in Carleton University. Her name is Mira Gillis. Percy would remember. I said to Mira, “What’s the most interesting thing about this place?” Here’s what her answer was. She said, “I came here, and you’re all so important, and it’s kind of scary. I was really nervous.” Then she said, “I realized that you’re all just like one big family,” and my jaw dropped, because she was right. We are a dysfunctional family. We put the “fun” in “dysfunction.” And it’s a very special place.

I want to say, personally, I will miss all of you—some more than others. And I want to wish you all the best of luck, because you’re great people—not too much luck though, to be honest, for the people on the right and the people across from me. Thank you so much for being here and being a pleasure to work with.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Chatham-Kent–Leamington.

Mr. Rick Nicholls: The last 10 and a half years have gone by very, very quickly. On behalf of my caucus of one—the Ontario Party—again, I want to wish everyone well in the upcoming election.

The election, June 2, is the only poll that really counts. Some of us will be here and some of us may not be here after that election.

I look around and I see my former colleagues, and I see my friends and colleagues with the NDP and with the Liberals, and even the member from the Green Party, and I want to say thank you. You are friends.

As I walk the halls and I look around, I don’t forget my very first day here. I was in awe. I was in absolute awe when I saw the names in granite engraved going back to July 1, 1867, the very first Parliament. And now here we are, in the 42nd Parliament, heading into the 43rd.

I look around, and Speaker, I want to thank you. You and I have served a total of eight years—well, I guess, me, seven—as either Deputy Speaker and you as Speaker. I want to thank you for your leadership and your friendship as well.

To my friends across the way, thank you. You’ll be missed. I hope I see many of you back, because I’m hoping that I will be back, but one never knows. As I said, elections are funny things, and sometimes surprises happen.

Again, I want to thank everyone for the opportunity to be your friend, and I look forward to whatever the future holds.

May we be safe, may we be healthy.

Applause.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you for those kind words.

Deferred Votes

Police Services Amendment Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 modifiant la Loi sur les services policiers

Deferred vote on the motion for third reading of the following bill:

Bill 78, An Act to amend the Police Services Act / Projet de loi 78, Loi modifiant la Loi sur les services policiers.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): We have a deferred vote on the motion for third reading of Bill 78, An Act to amend the Police Services Act.

Call in the members. This is a five-minute bill.

The division bells rang from 1220 to 1225.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): On April 14, 2022, Mr. Harris moved third reading of Bill 78, An Act to amend the Police Services Act. All those in favour of the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Ayes

  • Anand, Deepak
  • Andrew, Jill
  • Babikian, Aris
  • Bailey, Robert
  • Barrett, Toby
  • Blais, Stephen
  • Bouma, Will
  • Calandra, Paul
  • Cho, Raymond Sung Joon
  • Cho, Stan
  • Clark, Steve
  • Coe, Lorne
  • Collard, Lucille
  • Crawford, Stephen
  • Cuzzetto, Rudy
  • Downey, Doug
  • Dunlop, Jill
  • Fedeli, Victor
  • Fife, Catherine
  • Fraser, John
  • Fullerton, Merrilee
  • Gates, Wayne
  • Gélinas, France
  • Gill, Parm
  • Gretzky, Lisa
  • Hardeman, Ernie
  • Harris, Mike
  • Hassan, Faisal
  • Hatfield, Percy
  • Hogarth, Christine
  • Jones, Sylvia
  • Kanapathi, Logan
  • Karpoche, Bhutila
  • Ke, Vincent
  • Khanjin, Andrea
  • Kramp, Daryl
  • Kusendova, Natalia
  • Lecce, Stephen
  • MacLeod, Lisa
  • Martin, Robin
  • McKenna, Jane
  • McNaughton, Monte
  • Miller, Norman
  • Mulroney, Caroline
  • Oosterhoff, Sam
  • Pang, Billy
  • Park, Lindsey
  • Parsa, Michael
  • Pettapiece, Randy
  • Piccini, David
  • Rasheed, Kaleed
  • Romano, Ross
  • Sabawy, Sheref
  • Sandhu, Amarjot
  • Sarkaria, Prabmeet Singh
  • Sattler, Peggy
  • Scott, Laurie
  • Shaw, Sandy
  • Simard, Amanda
  • Singh, Gurratan
  • Skelly, Donna
  • Smith, Dave
  • Smith, Todd
  • Stiles, Marit
  • Surma, Kinga
  • Taylor, Monique
  • Thanigasalam, Vijay
  • Thompson, Lisa M.
  • Tibollo, Michael A.
  • Triantafilopoulos, Effie J.
  • Vanthof, John
  • Wai, Daisy
  • Walker, Bill
  • Yakabuski, John

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): All those opposed to the motion will please rise one at a time and be counted by the Clerk.

The Clerk of the Assembly (Mr. Todd Decker): The ayes are 74; the nays are 0.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I declare the motion carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

Ross Memorial Hospital Act, 2022

Deferred vote on the motion for second reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Call in the members. This is another five-minute bell.

The division bells rang from 1228 to 1229.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): On April 28, 2022, Mr. Miller, Parry Sound–Muskoka, moved second reading of Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital. All those in favour of the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Ayes

  • Anand, Deepak
  • Babikian, Aris
  • Bailey, Robert
  • Barrett, Toby
  • Bouma, Will
  • Calandra, Paul
  • Cho, Raymond Sung Joon
  • Cho, Stan
  • Clark, Steve
  • Coe, Lorne
  • Crawford, Stephen
  • Cuzzetto, Rudy
  • Downey, Doug
  • Dunlop, Jill
  • Fedeli, Victor
  • Fullerton, Merrilee
  • Gill, Parm
  • Hardeman, Ernie
  • Harris, Mike
  • Hogarth, Christine
  • Jones, Sylvia
  • Kanapathi, Logan
  • Ke, Vincent
  • Khanjin, Andrea
  • Kramp, Daryl
  • Kusendova, Natalia
  • Lecce, Stephen
  • MacLeod, Lisa
  • Martin, Robin
  • McKenna, Jane
  • McNaughton, Monte
  • Miller, Norman
  • Mulroney, Caroline
  • Oosterhoff, Sam
  • Pang, Billy
  • Parsa, Michael
  • Pettapiece, Randy
  • Piccini, David
  • Rasheed, Kaleed
  • Romano, Ross
  • Sabawy, Sheref
  • Sandhu, Amarjot
  • Sarkaria, Prabmeet Singh
  • Scott, Laurie
  • Skelly, Donna
  • Smith, Dave
  • Smith, Todd
  • Surma, Kinga
  • Thanigasalam, Vijay
  • Thompson, Lisa M.
  • Tibollo, Michael A.
  • Triantafilopoulos, Effie J.
  • Wai, Daisy
  • Walker, Bill
  • Yakabuski, John

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): All those opposed to the motion will please rise one at a time and be counted by the Clerk.

Nays

  • Andrew, Jill
  • Fife, Catherine
  • Gates, Wayne
  • Gélinas, France
  • Gretzky, Lisa
  • Hassan, Faisal
  • Hatfield, Percy
  • Karpoche, Bhutila
  • Nicholls, Rick
  • Sattler, Peggy
  • Shaw, Sandy
  • Singh, Gurratan
  • Stiles, Marit
  • Taylor, Monique
  • Vanthof, John

The Clerk of the Assembly (Mr. Todd Decker): The ayes are 55; the nays are 15.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I declare the motion carried.

Second reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Pursuant to the order of the House from earlier today, I recognize the member for Haliburton–Kawartha Lakes–Brock to move third reading of the bill.

Ross Memorial Hospital Act, 2022

Ms. Scott moved third reading of the following bill:

Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Pursuant to the order of the House from earlier today, I’m now required to put the question.

Ms. Scott has moved the motion for third reading of Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital. Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? I heard some noes.

All those in favour of the motion will please say “aye.”

All those opposed will please say “nay.”

In my opinion, the ayes have it.

Call in the members. This is a five-minute bell.

Interjection: Same vote.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the same vote? I heard a no.

The division bells rang from 1233 to 1234.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): On April 28, 2022, Ms. Scott moved third reading of Bill Pr65, An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital. All those in favour of the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Ayes

  • Anand, Deepak
  • Babikian, Aris
  • Bailey, Robert
  • Barrett, Toby
  • Bouma, Will
  • Calandra, Paul
  • Cho, Raymond Sung Joon
  • Cho, Stan
  • Clark, Steve
  • Coe, Lorne
  • Crawford, Stephen
  • Cuzzetto, Rudy
  • Downey, Doug
  • Dunlop, Jill
  • Fedeli, Victor
  • Fullerton, Merrilee
  • Gill, Parm
  • Hardeman, Ernie
  • Harris, Mike
  • Hogarth, Christine
  • Jones, Sylvia
  • Kanapathi, Logan
  • Ke, Vincent
  • Khanjin, Andrea
  • Kramp, Daryl
  • Kusendova, Natalia
  • Lecce, Stephen
  • MacLeod, Lisa
  • Martin, Robin
  • McKenna, Jane
  • McNaughton, Monte
  • Miller, Norman
  • Mulroney, Caroline
  • Oosterhoff, Sam
  • Pang, Billy
  • Parsa, Michael
  • Pettapiece, Randy
  • Piccini, David
  • Rasheed, Kaleed
  • Romano, Ross
  • Sabawy, Sheref
  • Sandhu, Amarjot
  • Sarkaria, Prabmeet Singh
  • Scott, Laurie
  • Skelly, Donna
  • Smith, Dave
  • Smith, Todd
  • Surma, Kinga
  • Thanigasalam, Vijay
  • Thompson, Lisa M.
  • Tibollo, Michael A.
  • Triantafilopoulos, Effie J.
  • Wai, Daisy
  • Walker, Bill
  • Yakabuski, John

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): All those opposed to the motion will please rise one at time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Nays

  • Andrew, Jill
  • Fife, Catherine
  • Gates, Wayne
  • Gélinas, France
  • Gretzky, Lisa
  • Hassan, Faisal
  • Hatfield, Percy
  • Karpoche, Bhutila
  • Nicholls, Rick
  • Sattler, Peggy
  • Shaw, Sandy
  • Singh, Gurratan
  • Stiles, Marit
  • Taylor, Monique
  • Vanthof, John

The Clerk of the Assembly (Mr. Todd Decker): The ayes are 55; the nays are 15.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I declare the motion carried.

Be it resolved that the bill do now pass and be entitled as in the motion.

Third reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): There being no further business at this time, this House stands in recess until 1 p.m.

The House recessed from 1236 to 1300.

Reports by Committees

Select Committee on Emergency Management Oversight

Mr. Robert Bailey: I beg leave to present the 21st interim report of the Select Committee on Emergency Management Oversight.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Bailey presents the committee’s report. Does the member wish to make a brief statement?

Mr. Robert Bailey: I’d like to thank the members of the government, the members of the opposition and, of course, the members of the third party who participated with us for, I think, over two years on the select committee. It was a great opportunity for the ministers and different people from the government who were involved with COVID-19 and all the other things we had to deal with during the last two years to come and present. It was very informative, and I enjoyed my participation with it. I just wanted to thank all the members who participated.

Report presented.

Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills

Mr. Vincent Ke: I beg leave to present the first report, 2022, of the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Ke has presented the committee’s report. Does the member wish to make a brief statement?

Mr. Vincent Ke: “As Chair of the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills, I’m pleased to table the committee’s first report, 2022.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the membership of the committee for their work: Vice-Chair John Fraser, Lorne Coe, Vincent Ke, Laura Mae Lindo, Paul Miller, Billy Pang, Jeremy Roberts, Dave Smith, Daisy Wai and Jamie West, as well as substitute members Stephen Crawford, Michael Mantha and Randy Pettapiece.

“The committee also acknowledges the assistance provided during the hearings and report-writing deliberations by the Clerk of the Committee and the staff in legislative research.”

Report presented.

Introduction of Bills

Making Psychotherapy Services Tax-Free Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 pour des services de psychothérapie exempts de taxes

Ms. Andrew moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 120, An Act in respect of the tax treatment of psychotherapy services provided by certain practitioners in Ontario under the Psychotherapy Act, 2007 / Projet de loi 120, Loi concernant le traitement fiscal des services de psychothérapie offerts par certains praticiens en Ontario en application de la Loi de 2007 sur les psychothérapeutes.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Would the member care to give a brief statement explaining her bill?

Ms. Jill Andrew: Thank you, Speaker. When the NDP forms government, we plan to incorporate mental health services into Ontario’s publicly funded health insurance program. We look forward to having Ontario’s registered psychotherapists become a part of that plan, and removing the HST from RP services, which is exactly what this bill intends to do, is an immediate change we can make to get more Ontarians the services they need to stay healthy.

Again, thank you, Speaker. Thank you to my co-sponsor, the MPP from Nickel Belt, France Gélinas, an excellent health critic. And we are thankful to RP Caroline Rosta, RP Laura Hetherington and also RP Jane Alway, president of the Ontario Association of Mental Health Professionals.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to ask the members, when they’re introducing their bills, not to make any partisan political commentary and keep their explanation brief and to the point.

No Time to Waste Act (Plan for Climate Action and Jobs), 2022 / Loi de 2022 sur la nécessité de ne pas gaspiller de temps (plan en matière d’action pour le climat et l’emploi)

Ms. Karpoche moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 121, An Act to enact the Climate Crisis Health Action Plan Act, 2022, the Ontario Climate Crisis Strategy for the Public Sector Act, 2022 and the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis Act, 2022 / Projet de loi 121, Loi édictant la Loi de 2022 sur le Plan d’action sur la crise climatique et la santé, la Loi de 2022 sur la Stratégie du secteur public de l’Ontario relative à la crise climatique et la Loi de 2022 sur le Comité spécial de l’action relative à la crise climatique.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Would the member like to briefly explain her bill?

Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: Yes. Thank you, Speaker. There is no time to waste when it comes to addressing the climate crisis. We can take action now by creating good green jobs, preparing for the health impacts of the climate crisis and working together on a plan to reduce our carbon emissions. This is exactly what the bill seeks to do.

The No Time to Waste Act (Plan for Climate Action and Jobs) will (1) accelerate the adoption of green technology and emission reductions in the public sector; (2) prepare the health care system for the challenges that we’re going to face in a hotter world; and (3) set up a select committee of the Legislature to chart a course forward on dealing with the climate crisis.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Once again, I’ll ask the members, when they’re giving their brief explanation of their bill, ideally to read the explanatory note associated with the bill.

Supporting Economic Recovery and Renewal in the Niagara Region Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 visant à soutenir la reprise et le renouveau économiques dans la région de Niagara

Mr. Gates moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 122, An Act to exempt certain wines from the basic tax on wine / Projet de loi 122, Loi visant à exempter certains vins de la taxe de base sur le vin.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’ll invite the member to briefly explain his bill.

Mr. Wayne Gates: The bill amends the Alcohol, Cannabis and Gaming Regulation and Public Protection Act, 1996, to provide an exemption for certain wines from the tax set out in subsection 27(1).

Our wine industry is a major part of our community in Niagara and our economy. It supports 18,000 jobs in our province, and an average bottle sold generates nearly $50 in economic impact. This bill will eliminate an unfair tax on our local wineries and allow them to continue to produce the amazing products that they do. Our industry should be lifted up by the province and allowed to flourish beside foreign products.

I hope all parties support this legislation. Thank you.

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Labour Relations Amendment Act (Replacement Workers), 2022 / Loi de 2022 modifiant la Loi sur les relations de travail (travailleurs suppléants)

Madame Gélinas moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 123, An Act to amend the Labour Relations Act, 1995 with respect to replacement workers / Projet de loi 123, Loi modifiant la Loi de 1995 sur les relations de travail en ce qui concerne les travailleurs suppléants.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I invite the member for Nickel Belt to briefly explain her bill.

Mme France Gélinas: I’ll be very brief, Speaker. I’m pleased to co-sponsor this bill with the MPP from Sudbury, Mr. Jamie West. The bill restores the provisions that were incorporated into the Labour Relations Act by the Labour Relations and Employment Statute Law Amendment Act in 1992 and subsequently repealed by the Labour Relations Act of 1995. The provisions being restored prevent an employer from replacing striking or locked-out employees with replacement workers, except in specified emergency situations. This is an anti-scab bill.

Safe Night Out Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 visant à favoriser des sorties sans danger

Ms. Sattler moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 124, An Act to amend the Liquor Licence and Control Act, 2019 and the Occupational Health and Safety Act respecting training on sexual violence and harassment / Projet de loi 124, Loi modifiant la Loi de 2019 sur les permis d’alcool et la réglementation des alcools et la Loi sur la santé et la sécurité au travail en ce qui concerne la formation sur la violence à caractère sexuel et le harcèlement.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I invite the member to briefly explain her bill.

Ms. Peggy Sattler: This bill, the Safe Night Out Act, will help ensure that patrons and workers at licensed premises can enjoy an experience free from sexual violence and harassment. The bill amends the Liquor Licence and Control Act, 2019, to require the establishment of an evidence-based, trauma-informed sexual violence and harassment prevention training program which is mandatory for servers, persons who provide security and supervisors. Every licensee and permit holder is required to have a sexual violence and harassment policy in place.

The bill also amends the violence and harassment provisions of the Occupational Health and Safety Act respecting workplace harassment, workplace sexual harassment and workplace violence.

I want to thank my co-sponsors for this bill: the member for Toronto–St. Paul’s, the member for London North Centre and the member for Kitchener Centre.

Justice for Victims of Occupational Disease Act, 2022 / Loi de 2022 sur la justice pour les victimes de maladies professionnelles

Mr. Gates moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 125, An Act to amend the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997 in connection with occupational diseases / Projet de loi 125, Loi modifiant la Loi de 1997 sur la sécurité professionnelle et l’assurance contre les accidents du travail en ce qui concerne les maladies professionnelles.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Would the member like to briefly explain his bill?

Mr. Wayne Gates: The bill amends the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997. Section 15 of the act is amended to set out certain rules with respect to termination, about occupational disease. Section 161 of the act is amended to require the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board to review the list of known carcinogens and probable carcinogens published by the International Agency for Research on Cancer and to ensure that the regulations respecting occupational diseases are amended accordingly.

This being the Day of Mourning, we must mourn those who have passed, but we also must continue to fight for the living.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Introduction of bills? The member for Windsor–Tecumseh.

Mr. Percy Hatfield: This being the introduction of bills, and this being the last day in the House, I’d like to reintroduce Bill Walker, the member for Bruce–Grey–Owen Sound.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Unanimous consent to get second and third reading will probably follow.

Visitor

Mr. Roman Baber: Point of order, Speaker.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Point of order, the member for York Centre.

Mr. Roman Baber: I’d like to introduce my executive assistant, Bathusa Baskararajah, who has served with me for the last four years and has in fact been helpful to many members on all sides of the House. Thank you so much, Bathusa. Thank you for everything you’ve done for a lot of people in this room.

And to all members of the House who serve the people of Ontario: As someone who came to this country 26 years ago without a cent to my name and with very little English, to serve with all of you and the constituents who welcomed me has been the greatest honour of my life. I’m grateful to all of you, sincerely, and I wish you well.

Motions

House sittings

Hon. Paul Calandra: I move that when the House adjourns today, it stand adjourned until 10:15 a.m. on Monday, September 12, 2022.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Calandra has moved that when the House adjourns today, it stand adjourned until 10:15 a.m. on Monday, September 12, 2022.

Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? I heard some noes.

All those in favour of the motion will please say “aye.”

All those opposed will please say “nay.”

In my opinion, the ayes have it.

Ms. Peggy Sattler: On division.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The motion is carried on division.

Motion agreed to.

Petitions

Anti-racism activities

Ms. Peggy Sattler: I have a petition entitled “Take Action on Islamophobia.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas white supremacy and hate crimes are on the rise, and we must take urgent action to combat Islamophobia and organized hate; and

“Whereas Ontario should be a province in which families can live without fear, regardless of the religion they practise, their clothes, or the colour of their skin; and

“Whereas the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) has made recommendations for key and common-sense changes in the way that we challenge Islamophobia in Ontario;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to pass the Our London Family Act, which will address NCCM’s provincial calls to action including:

“—a provincial review of hate crimes and hate-motivated incidents in Ontario;

“—new tools and strategies for Ontario schools to combat all forms of racism;

“—safe zones around religious institutions;

“—empowering the Speaker to ban protests at Queen’s Park that incite hate;

“—dismantling white supremacist groups by preventing them from registering as societies, and prevent acts of intimidation; and

“—establishing an Ontario anti-racism advisory and advocacy council, to make sure racialized communities have a say on government policies that impact their lives.”

I couldn’t agree more with this petition. I affix my signature and will send it to the table with page Molly.

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Social assistance

Mr. Mike Schreiner: There are a number of individuals who came to Queen’s Park today and handed me this petition, “To Raise Social Assistance Rates.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the Ontario government has not increased social assistance rates since 2018, while the cost of living has rapidly escalated, reaching 4.5% in December 2021;

“Whereas Ontario’s current social assistance rates are well below Canada’s official Market Basket Measure poverty line and woefully inadequate to cover the basic costs of food and rent;

“Whereas individuals on the Ontario Works program receive just $733 per month and individuals on the Ontario Disability Support Program receive just $1,169 per month;

“Whereas the government of Canada recognized through the CERB program that a ‘basic income’ of $2,000 per month was the standard support required by individuals who lost their jobs during the pandemic;

“We, the undersigned citizens of Ontario, petition the Legislative Assembly to increase social assistance rates to a base of $2,000 per month for those on Ontario Works and to increase other programs accordingly.”

I support this petition. I will sign it and ask page Alex to bring it to the table.

Social assistance

Mr. Faisal Hassan: I have a petition, “To Raise Social Assistance Rates.” I would like to thank Dr. Sally Palmer, chair of the Hamilton Social Work Action Committee, for collecting these petitions.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas Ontario’s social assistance rates are well below Canada’s official Market Basket Measure poverty line and woefully inadequate to cover the basic costs of food and rent;

“Whereas individuals on the Ontario Works program receive just $733 per month and individuals on the Ontario Disability Support Program receive just $1,169 per month, only 41% and 65% of the poverty line;

“Whereas the Ontario government has not increased social assistance rates since 2018, and Canada’s inflation rate in January 2022 was 5.1%, the highest rate in 30 years;

“Whereas the government of Canada recognized through the CERB program that a ‘basic income’ of $2,000 per month was the standard support required by individuals who lost their employment during the pandemic;

“We, the undersigned citizens of Ontario, petition the Legislative Assembly to increase social assistance rates to a base of $2,000 per month for those on Ontario Works and to increase other programs accordingly.”

I fully support this petition. I will be affixing my signature to it and providing it to page Ria to deliver to the table.

Hon. Paul Calandra: Point of order.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Point of order, the government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I seek unanimous consent that, notwithstanding standing order 61(b), at the conclusion of petitions, the member for Brampton North be given the opportunity to speak for 10 minutes.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m sorry, can you please repeat that?

Mr. John Fraser: Clock.

Hon. Paul Calandra: You can stop the clock, I don’t care, really, honestly. I seek unanimous consent to stop the clock.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to stop the clock. If that’s the biggest issue of the day, we’ll stop the clock.

Government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I seek unanimous consent that, notwithstanding standing order 61(b), the member for Brampton North be given 10 minutes to address the House at the conclusion of petitions.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The House leader is seeking unanimous consent of the House to allow the member for Brampton North to speak for 10 minutes after petitions. Agreed? Agreed.

Restart the clock. Petitions?

Social assistance

Ms. Peggy Sattler: I would like to thank Sally Palmer at McMaster University for this petition.

“To Raise Social Assistance Rates.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas Ontario’s social assistance rates are well below Canada’s official Market Basket Measure poverty line and woefully inadequate to cover the basic costs of food and rent;

“Whereas individuals on the Ontario Works program receive just $733 per month and individuals on the Ontario Disability Support Program receive just $1,169 per month, only 41% and 65% of the poverty line;

“Whereas the Ontario government has not increased social assistance rates since 2018, and Canada’s inflation rate in January 2022 was 5.1%, the highest rate in 30 years;

“Whereas the government of Canada recognized through the CERB program that a ‘basic income’ of $2,000 per month was the standard support required by individuals who lost their employment during the pandemic;

“We, the undersigned citizens of Ontario, petition the Legislative Assembly to increase social assistance rates to a base of $2,000 per month for those on Ontario Works and to increase other programs accordingly.”

I’m proud to affix my signature and will send it to the table with page Alex.

Sexual assault

Mme Lucille Collard: “To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas 39% of Ontario hospitals and health centres reached by She Matters throughout the course of the sexual assault kit accessibility study stated they did not have sexual assault kits available to survivors;

“Whereas many hospitals do not have nurses or physicians trained in conducting a SAEK examination and specialized training is required to gather evidence without further re-traumatizing the survivor;

“Whereas it is not mandatory in nursing and medical schools to learn sexual assault evidence collection and many colleges charge a fee beyond traditional tuition for nursing students who want to take a SANE course on weekends;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“To adopt Bill 108, Access to Sexual Assault Evidence Kits and Provision of Sexual Assault Education Act, 2022, which would amend the Post-secondary Education Choice and Excellence Act, 2000, to require persons who grant degrees in nursing under that act to provide Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner training, free of charge, to nursing students and amend the Public Hospitals Act to require hospitals to have at least 10 sexual assault evidence kits available for patients at all times and to provide them to patients who are in need of them, free of charge.”

Mr. Speaker, I agree with this petition, will put my name to it and give it to page Alexandria to bring to the table.

Documents gouvernementaux

Mme France Gélinas: J’aimerais remercier les membres du club de la Vallée à Hanmer ainsi que les membres du Club 50 de Chelmsford pour ces pétitions.

« Accents en français sur les cartes santé de l’Ontario.

« Alors qu’il est important d’avoir le nom exact des personnes sur les cartes émises par le gouvernement telle la carte santé;

« Alors que plusieurs personnes francophones ont des accents dans l’épellation de leur nom », comme moi;

« Alors que le ministère de la Santé a confirmé que le système informatique de l’Ontario ne permet pas l’enregistrement des lettres avec des accents; »

Ils et elles demandent à « l’Assemblée législative de l’Ontario pour qu’elle s’assure que les accents de la langue française soient inclus sur les cartes santé émises par le gouvernement de l’Ontario », et ce, le plus tôt possible.

J’appuie cette pétition. Je vais la signer et je la donne à Noëlla pour l’amener à la table des greffiers.

Curriculum

Mrs. Belinda C. Karahalios: A big thank you to Catherine Kronas for organizing this. We have thousands and thousands of names, both online and, as you can see, here with me today written. It is:

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas, as announced on March 15, 2019, the Ford government’s new health and physical education curriculum continues to include required teaching of gender identity theory for students too young to receive such teaching; and

“Whereas the Toronto, Hamilton-Wentworth, and York Region District School Boards have each released equity lesson plans developed from intersectionality theories, including critical race theory, which segregates students into ‘privilege’ and ‘oppression’ hierarchies with the intent of treating them differently based on their immutable characteristics as further reinforced in Bill 67, Racial Equity in the Education System Act, 2021; and

“Whereas the Halton Catholic school board held a training workshop for teachers which claimed publicly funded education is a form of covert white supremacy;

“We, the undersigned, petition Premier Doug Ford, his government, and the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to:

“—stop Bill 67, Racial Equity in the Education System Act, 2021 and stop teaching intersectionality theories, including critical race theory, in our publicly funded schools which contradicts with the principle of equality before the law and with the individual rights of Ontarians pursuant to a liberal democratic society; and

“—stop teaching gender identity theory to students who are minors in our publicly funded schools; and

“—commit to a results-based education curriculum that focuses on equal opportunity, meritocracy, and educational excellence.”

I approve this petition and affix my name to it and give it to page Alexander.

Social assistance

Ms. Sandy Shaw: This is just one of the many petitions I have: “To Raise Social Assistance Rates.” I have to thank Dr. Sally Palmer and Elizabeth McGuire for all your hard work from the campaign for adequate welfare and disability rates.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas Ontario’s social assistance rates are well below Canada’s official Market Basket Measure poverty line and woefully inadequate to cover the basic costs of food and rent;

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“Whereas individuals on the Ontario Works program receive just $733 per month and individuals on the Ontario Disability Support Program receive just $1,169 per month, only 41% and 65% of the poverty line;

“Whereas the Ontario government has not increased social assistance rates since 2018, and Canada’s inflation rate in January 2022 was 5.1%, the highest rate in 30 years;

“Whereas the government of Canada recognized through the CERB program that a ‘basic income’ of $2,000 per month was the standard support required by individuals who lost their employment during the pandemic;

“We, the undersigned citizens of Ontario, petition the Legislative Assembly to increase social assistance rates to a base of $2,000 per month for those on Ontario Works and to increase other programs accordingly.”

I wholeheartedly support this petition. I will add my name to theirs and will give it to page Alex to take to the table.

Guide and service animals

Mr. Stephen Blais: I’d like to thank Kevin Frost, a dedicated advocate for those who are visually impaired and the blind, for organizing this petition. I beg your indulgence; I’ve misplaced my reading glasses.

“Whereas guide dogs provide a necessary support for individuals with unique needs;

“Whereas Ontarians receiving Ontario disability program income support ... and own a certified service dog can only receive $84 a month for each dog to help pay for their care, which for many ODSP recipients, does not cover all necessary costs;

“Whereas other provinces in Canada, namely Quebec, provide long-term disability ... and Canada Pension Plan ... recipients with service guide dogs $2,400 coverage every year, nearly 58% higher than the Ontario guide dog benefit;

“Whereas the service guide dog for the blind is encoded in the Blind Persons’ Rights Act, 1990. The service does fall under the health care OHIP plan under ADP in order to ensure access to Ontario guide dog benefit; and

“Whereas individuals receiving the guide dog benefit are being forced to rely on insufficient funds for a necessary resource for their day-to-day lives, thus leaving individuals without the necessary supports they need;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to commit to increased funding and providing resources to all those receiving the Ontario guide dog benefit to meet their disability needs.”

I agree with this petition. I will affix my signature and will provide it to the table.

Affordable housing

Ms. Jill Andrew: This petition is entitled, “More Affordable Homes for Everyone.

“Petition to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas there are an estimated 92,000 homes sitting empty in Toronto alone, representing a vacancy rate increase of 40% over the past five years;

“Whereas one in four homes across Ontario are purchased for the sake of investment as the cost of housing for working Ontarians is further and further” and further “out of reach;

“Whereas housing affordability across Ontario is at the highest it has been in 31 years;

“Whereas the housing crisis is as much about increasing affordable supply as it is limiting demand from housing profiteers;

“Whereas failing to make housing affordable risks Ontario’s economic recovery as working Ontarians will be driven out of the province or made unhoused, to rely on far more expensive budget items such as shelters, hospitals, and prisons;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to fix the housing affordability crisis in Ontario through proven-effective policies including, but not limited to, implementing speculation taxes, rent and vacancy control, addressing the ‘missing middle’ of housing supply, and increasing social, supportive, and transitional housing investments.”

I support this petition. I’m affixing my signature and will hand it to Natalie for tabling.

Social assistance

Mr. Mike Schreiner: I have another petition, handed to me by people who visited Queen’s Park today. This one says:

“Petition to Double ODSP Rates.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the government systematically underfunds and fails to adequately support peoples with disabilities; and

“Whereas the government cancelled a planned 3% increase in ODSP benefits; and

“Whereas persons with disabilities have borne a disproportionate burden of the pandemic; and

“Whereas the cost of shelter has gone up 4.8%, and food is up 3.9%; and

“Whereas persons with disabilities on ODSP have been struggling to survive on $1,169 a month; and

“Whereas the government must place people with disabilities at the centre of the province’s pandemic recovery plans, addressing a long-standing gap in Ontario’s social safety net while honouring its commitment to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“To instruct the Ontario government to immediately commit to doubling ODSP rates and take action to ensure Ontario provides a basic livable income supplement for people with disabilities.”

I support this petition, will sign it and ask Noëlla to bring it to the table.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The time for petitions, unfortunately, has expired.

Now that we know that this is the last day that the House is going to sit in this Parliament, I’ll remind members that until the end of the day, you can still table a petition with the table and have it presented to the government in that manner.

Visitors

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Point of order, the member for Hamilton Mountain.

Miss Monique Taylor: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. With your indulgence, I’d like to welcome the author of the ODSP raise the rates assistance petition to the House today: Dr. Sally Palmer, and with her, Elizabeth McGuire. Welcome to Queen’s Park. Thank you for all the work that you do.

Member for Brampton North

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to now recognize the member for Brampton North, who has 10 minutes to make a presentation.

Mr. Kevin Yarde: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I want to thank the government House leader for allowing me to have this time to speak to the people of Ontario, the people of Brampton, as well as the people who are all here today.

It’s interesting being on this side of the House. The seat’s a little bit cold, but obviously it’s my first day here as an independent. I just want to say to the people of Brampton North, thank you so much—for those who voted for me and those who didn’t vote for me—for the last four years of support. I’ll continue to be there to help you in any field.

Of course, there are many groups, many organizations in Brampton, too many to mention, that I’d like to thank: the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, which has been there for many people of Brampton, not just during COVID but before and after, as well as the Knights Table, which is an organization that helps people who are marginalized, who are having difficulty finding food and shelter. So I’d like thank those two groups in Brampton in particular.

As well, the future, I think, is great in Brampton. We have a Brampton youth group, and just listening to them the last four years, I know that Brampton, Brampton North, as well Ontario are in good hands because of the younger generation. They are our future, and there are a lot of young people who I believe will carry on the torch in Brampton and across Ontario.

Now, earlier, as the critic for community safety and corrections, I’d like to thank the Ontario police services board, the Toronto police, the Peel police, as well as the fire and emergency services for all the great work they’ve been doing during the pandemic, before and after. I made a lot of friends in the police services board and I continue to work with them and I wish them all the best as well.

Of course, our pandemic heroes: You can’t go without talking about the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario, the Black nurses association of Ontario as well. All these people have been on the front lines, as we know. We call them heroes. We’ll continue to call them heroes. I’m also there to continue to fight for them.

As the critic for auto insurance, there’s still a lot of work to be done, and I’m hoping we’ll work with the government. It’s not good to fight against each other. There’s still a lot of work to be done in terms of lowering auto insurance not just in Brampton but right across Ontario, and I’m hoping that we’ll continue to work together.

Now, one thing I’d like to talk about is being a member of the first official Black caucus. First of all, I’d like to thank my colleagues in the Black caucus: the member from York South–Weston, the member from Beaches–East York—she’s not here today; I know I’m not supposed to say that—as well as Toronto–St. Paul’s and Kitchener Centre. I want to thank them. Hopefully there will be another Black caucus after June 2. If not, I hope that we’ll all continue to fight against anti-Black racism and continue to make sure that in every realm of politics, whether it’s in education, whether it’s in health care, whether it’s in housing, we look at everything through the Black lens and make sure that those who are most vulnerable are taken care of. As well, being the first Black MPP in Peel region, I’m hoping that there will be others who will carry on the torch and make Peel and Ontario and Canada a better place to live.

I’d like to also thank the members in Brampton city hall. I’ve met a lot of new friends—the mayor, as well as the councillors—so I give a shout-out to them. We were able to work together, not just the councillors and the mayor, but the MPPs from Brampton South, Brampton Centre, Brampton West, Brampton East and myself. We were all able to work together and make it Team Brampton. I just want to give a shout-out to the mayor and all the councillors for all the great work that we continue to do in Brampton.

I want to give a special shout-out to my colleagues. I didn’t think I’d get emotional, Mr. Speaker. I told myself that I wouldn’t, but it’s hard. I want to thank all my colleagues. They know who they are. I want to thank my mentors—the member from Timiskaming–Cochrane as well as the members from Timmins, Windsor–Tecumseh, London–Fanshawe, Nickel Belt, Oshawa and Toronto–Danforth—for all the support they’ve given me over the last four years.

I want to thank the Speaker, the Clerks, the pages, the security, the cleaners, the kitchen staff and everyone, as well, in Queen’s Park.

Of course, I want to thank my family: my mom, my dad, my sister, and my fiancée, who’s lucky to be in Florida right now. I think she’s watching online.

Everybody’s wondering, what’s the future for me in politics? Well, I haven’t decided that, but I know that I love my province, I love my country, and I’ll continue to be there for everyone. Thank you.

Applause.

42nd Parliament

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I hope the House will indulge me for just a minute, now that it is clear that this is the last sitting day of the 42nd Parliament. I, too, want to extend my appreciation to many people.

I don’t have time to go through them all, but I want to express my special thanks to the Clerk of the Assembly; the Deputy Clerk; all at the Clerks’ table; the Sergeant-at-Arms; all of the staff at the Ontario Legislature and, in particular, the staff at the Speaker’s office, Rachel and Monica; and my constituency assistants in our riding office, Judy, Karen and Janice. I express my thanks, of course, to my spouse, Lisa, and my family for their support.

It has been an extraordinary experience for me to serve as your Speaker these last four years. It’s always a pleasure to work with all of you on both sides of the House.

I want to wish all the very best to those who are departing from the Legislature, who have chosen to not seek re-election, and wish the best of good luck to everyone who is seeking re-election. You’ve done an extraordinary job during a very difficult time, and I want to thank you.

Applause.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): This House stands in recess until 4 p.m.

The House recessed from 1343 to 1600.

Royal assent / Sanction royale

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I beg to inform the House that in the name of Her Majesty the Queen, Her Honour the Lieutenant Governor has been pleased to assent to certain bills in her office.

The Clerk-at-the-Table (Mr. Wai Lam (William) Wong): The following are the titles of the bills to which Her Honour did assent:

An Act to amend the Police Services Act / Loi modifiant la Loi sur les services policiers.

An Act to revive 201827 Ontario Limited.

An Act to revive 1692783 Ontario Inc.

An Act to revive 1712042 Ontario Ltd.

An Act respecting the Ross Memorial Hospital.

An Act to revive Lunova Machinery Import and Export Ltd.

An Act to revive Brisdale Plaza Inc.

An Act to revive 2127023 Ontario Inc.

An Act to revive Eleanor Fulcher Limited.

An Act to revive 1833025 Ontario Inc.

An Act to revive P.K.B. International Bazaar Ltd.

Orders of the Day

2022 Ontario budget / Budget de l’Ontario de 2022

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: I move, seconded by Mr. Ford, that this House approves in general the budgetary policy of the government.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Mr. Bethlenfalvy has moved, seconded by Mr. Ford, that this House approves in general the budgetary policy of the government.

I’m going to ask the indulgence of the House to allow the pages to deliver the budgets to the members.

Applause.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Without a doubt, that is the new record. Thank you. Congratulations.

Have all members received their copy of the budget?

Once again, I’ll recognize the Minister of Finance.

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: First off, I want to acknowledge my mother, Ester Bethlenfalvy, and of course my wife, Paula Hughes; my sister, Carla Bethlenfalvy; and finally, my father, Nick, who’s in hospital. Dad, get better soon. We’re going to have a Scotch together real soon.

It’s my honour to rise on behalf of Premier Ford and our entire government to introduce our 2022 budget.

Mr. Speaker, it’s a budget that says yes to rebuilding Ontario’s economy.

It’s a budget that says yes to keeping costs down for Ontario families and putting more money back in their pockets.

It’s a budget that says yes for working for Ontario workers.

And, Mr. Speaker, it’s a budget that says yes to building highways, building transit and building key infrastructure around our province.

And a budget that says yes to keeping Ontario open—today and in the future.

Monsieur le Président, les Ontariennes et les Ontariens méritent un gouvernement qui a un vrai plan pour bâtir l’avenir de la province.

Mr. Speaker, after two long years, where the people of Ontario have worked so hard and sacrificed so much to keep each other safe ...

After working so hard to get Ontario open and keep Ontario open.

The people of our province deserve a government that has a real plan to build.

Mr. Speaker.

This budget.

Our budget.

Ontario’s budget.

Is Premier Ford’s vision.

And our plan,

To cut through the excuses,

To act right away ...

On the priorities of our plan and our province.

This is our plan, and we will get it done.

So, in that spirit—let’s get to our plan.

Let’s start with our plan to get it done when it comes to rebuilding Ontario’s economy.

When we came into office, it was clear that we had a lot of work to do.

Take manufacturing: The previous Liberal government gave up on manufacturing, full stop. In a time of struggle, manufacturing workers were looking for a government that would fight for them, but the previous government said no. Not only did they fail to challenge the assumption that manufacturing decline was inevitable, they embraced it to the tune of 300,000 lost manufacturing jobs over the course of more than a decade.

Mr. Speaker, where the Liberals said no, we’ve said yes.

Our government took action to bring good jobs back to Ontario. We worked with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board to provide a rebate for some 300,000 eligible employers so they can pay their workers more, create new jobs and help grow the economy.

We introduced an accelerated capital cost allowance to help businesses invest in new equipment ...

Reduced industrial energy costs, by between 15% and 17% ...

And cut hundreds of millions in red tape.

Mr. Speaker, we have released a seamless end-to-end vision and a plan for the auto sector called Driving Prosperity ...

To jump-start our auto sector with the emerging opportunities in hybrid and electric vehicle production ...

So that Ontario can be an auto leader once again.

And we’re already getting it done.

We were proud to partner with the federal government, municipal governments ...

And forward-thinking partners in key sectors such as the auto supply chain to transform our auto sector, including:

—Dofasco on a once-in-a-generation $1.8-billion investment to make Ontario a world-leading producer of “clean steel” ...

—This investment also secures Hamilton’s position as a world leader in steel production and ensures a sustainable and growing future for the 4,600 people in Hamilton who work there.

—Honda Canada’s $1.4-billion investment to upgrade and retool its Alliston plants, so workers there can build next-generation hybrid vehicles ...

—Right here in Ontario, made by Ontario workers, and sold right across North America ...

—And great news for the 4,200 people who work for Honda Canada in Ontario.

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But wait, Mr. Speaker, there’s more:

—The $2-billion investment by General Motors to pave the way for GM’s first-ever electric vehicle (EV) production line in Ontario at Ingersoll ... while supporting continued vehicle production in Oshawa ...

—An investment that will support 2,600 jobs in Oshawa.

But Mr. Speaker, wait, there’s more:

—The largest greenfield investment in over a decade—the $5-billion investment by LG Energy Solution and Stellantis to build Ontario’s first-ever large-scale electric vehicle battery manufacturing plant ...

—An investment that will create 2,500 new jobs in the Windsor area.

Mr. Speaker, it’s worth noting that our commitment to renewing the auto sector is also an example of how our government is helping create clean and green jobs.

These investments in clean steel alone are the equivalent of taking one million cars off the road.

And by ramping up our production of clean steel, hybrids and electrical vehicles ...

We are showing that Ontario can hit our climate targets ...

Without imposing a carbon tax.

Mr. Speaker, our commitment to rebuilding the auto sector also shows our commitment to ensuring Ontario’s prosperity is shared.

Chaque petite ville et chaque communauté regorgent de talents et de possibilités, et chacune mérite de prospérer.

De la région du nord à celle de l’est et du sud-ouest, notre plan favorisera la prospérité partout et pour tous.

Every small town, every small city, every community is rich in talent and opportunity, and they all deserve to succeed, Mr. Speaker.

From the north, to the southwest to the east, our plan will bring prosperity everywhere, for everyone in Ontario.

And we are leading by example.

Working with our provincial agency partners, we will ensure communities across the province benefit from good jobs working in government and for provincial agencies.

Starting with the relocation of the headquarters of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board to London.

And we are looking to headquarter new agencies like Supply Ontario, Invest Ontario and Intellectual Property Ontario ...

In communities outside of Toronto.

Because, Mr. Speaker, every region in Ontario should have access to the opportunities that these jobs will bring.

And while we’re at it, Mr. Speaker ...

It is time to do more to tap into the enormous resource potential spread across this province. Starting with the Ring of Fire.

Canada is the only country in the western hemisphere with all of the raw materials required for a lithium-ion battery ...

With northern Ontario producing graphite, cobalt, lithium, nickel and other required minerals.

The Ring of Fire has the potential to bring multigenerational prosperity to northern and First Nation communities ...

While supporting a homegrown supply chain for battery technology, electronics, and electric and hybrid vehicles.

In an era of geopolitical instability ...

Seizing our critical mineral opportunity and developing the Ring of Fire is a strategic necessity for Canada ...

Our government has released Ontario’s Critical Minerals Strategy, a five-year road map that will help make this province a global leader in supplying critical minerals.

And a key part of our plan, Speaker, is the corridor to prosperity ... the roads to the Ring of Fire.

These roads will help bring critical minerals to the manufacturing hubs in the south, which will bring prosperity to Ontario’s north ...

And help improve access to health care, goods and services, education, housing and economic opportunities for First Nation communities.

Our government has committed close to $1 billion to build critical legacy infrastructure, including all-season roads to the Ring of Fire.

And just this month, we reached a historic milestone ...

With Marten Falls First Nation and Webequie First Nation submitting terms of reference for the proposed northern road link all-season road project environmental assessment.

Mr. Speaker, we were encouraged when the federal government followed our lead with $3.8 billion for a new Critical Minerals Strategy ...

And we continue to call on the federal government to join us in this once-in-a-generation opportunity.

Speaker, it’s time to build the roads to the Ring of Fire. Let’s get it done.

Just think, Mr. Speaker, when we open up the Ring of Fire, we can mine many of the critical minerals that electrical vehicles and batteries require, right here.

We can produce the clean steel right here.

We can quickly train and deploy the labour force we need right here.

We can assemble the hybrid and electric cars of the future right here.

We can do it all, right here in Ontario. For years, the missing piece was a government that was prepared to tie it all together with a real plan. Well, Mr. Speaker, Ontario now has that government, so let’s get it done.

Next, let’s talk about our plan to get it done when it comes to keeping costs down for Ontario families.

Mr. Speaker, as finance minister, I watch global economic trends, including inflation, closely.

While every party today is paying lip service to the rising cost of living, it’s important to check the track record. Over 15 long years in office, the previous Liberal government said no to giving families a break. This was most notable in the hydro debacle, where a parade of well-connected insiders got rich on feed-in tariff schemes while the price of electricity went up for Ontario families.

And, of course, then there were the tolls on the 412 and the 418 highways. And of course, Mr. Speaker, the fee increases for licence plate renewals and stickers.

Well, Mr. Speaker, we’ve taken a different approach. We’re saying yes to helping Ontario families with the cost of living ...

Including when we struck the best child care deal of any province in Canada.

And we are now taking the next step.

To help people across Ontario keep a few extra dollars in their pocket, right now, so they can continue to:

—pay the rent;

—pay the bills;

—pay for gas; and

—pay for the groceries.

Regardless of the curveballs the global economy throws their way.

It starts by cutting out the nuisance costs and fees that every single day frustrate the people of Ontario.

Our government is getting rid of the licence plate stickers and renewal fees that have cost so many Ontario drivers so much time, so much money, so much hassle and so much frustration. Those stickers, they’re gone.

This, on its own, will save Ontario drivers $120 a year, per vehicle, in southern Ontario ...

And $60 a year, per vehicle, in the north.

We’re not done there, Mr. Speaker ...

We are also providing a refund of eligible fees paid since March 2020.

And we’re taking steps to protect the people of Ontario from skyrocketing gas prices ...

By cutting the gas tax by 5.7 cents per litre and the fuel tax by 5.3 cents per litre for six months beginning July 1, 2022.

Taken together these two measures will help save households, on average, $465 in 2022.

Mr. Speaker, the other parties would rather talk about inflation than give anything back. But we believe the best way to help the people with the cost of living is to put a few extra dollars back in their pockets.

That’s why, with our proposed enhancement to the LIFT tax credit, this government will provide 1.1 million lower-income workers with an additional $300, on average, in tax relief in 2022 ...

Mr. Speaker, in a measure near and dear to my own constituents and to families throughout Durham region ...

We have also removed the road tolls on Highway 412 and 418 ...

It was time to correct this Liberal mistake and give drivers in Durham an overdue break, and we got it done.

One of the defining affordability challenges of our time is housing.

Our province is growing, Mr. Speaker.

Every year, people from across Canada and around the world choose Ontario to build their careers and raise their families here in Ontario.

But every single year, they are putting pressure on our housing supply, and the dream of home ownership becomes further and further out of reach.

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Now, Mr. Speaker, where has the opposition been on the housing crisis? All they want to do is talk. They’ve never seen a regulation they didn’t like. They’ve never seen a process they wouldn’t like to slow down.

Well, not us. We are saying yes to new homes—accessible homes and affordable homes. We’ll let others talk about housing. We’re going to build housing right here in Ontario.

In fact, as part of our plan, we will increase the housing supply by building 1.5 million new homes over the next 10 years.

It’s time to put more housing options within the reach of the families who so badly need them.

When we talk about building new homes for families, we say, let’s get it done.

Mr. Speaker, next I want to talk about our plan to get it done when it comes to building highways and key infrastructure.

Ontario’s growth is not just putting pressure on housing.

It’s also putting unprecedented pressure on our roads, highways, transit and other infrastructure.

Today, as I give this speech, tens of thousands of people are stuck on the 400-series highways because, for decades, the previous government was unable to get things done. The previous government and its transportation minister didn’t even try. It’s like they were allergic to concrete, Mr. Speaker.

They would spend a decade debating the route of a road or the route of a highway or allow the same old interest group vetoes to block things from getting done. Time after time, decisions were kicked down the road, appealed and re-appealed, reviewed and re-reviewed, debated and re-debated, or just buried under a growing mountain of red tape.

Today, they continue that legacy by criticizing any attempt to build, pandering to those who want to shut down any and all building in the province. Mr. Speaker, there are a million ways to say no, and I believe the Liberal Party has tried all of them. But there’s only one way to say yes, and that’s under Premier Ford’s leadership. We’re getting it done.

From day one, we have invested to correct Ontario’s infrastructure deficit ...

Starting with a historic investment of nearly $4 billion to connect every community to high-speed Internet by the year 2025.

Now we are taking the next step.

By building the roads, building the highways and building the transit Ontario needs.

At the heart of our plan is a capital investment of $158 billion over the next 10 years, with planned investments of $20 billion in 2022 and 2023 alone.

We need to be ambitious, Mr. Speaker.

Our plan—and only our plan—includes trains, subways and highways.

Mr. Speaker, the opposition would rather pretend we don’t live in a province where millions still drive a car to get to work.

You cannot fight gridlock without building highways.

That is why we are investing more than $25 billion over the next 10 years for highway projects right across the province, including Highway 413.

Highway 413 will save drivers up to 35 minutes on their commute, while supporting up to 3,500 jobs per year.

It might not matter to the opposition, but it matters to the people of Brampton.

Mr. Speaker, it’s time to get Highway 413 built. Let’s get it done.

This commitment extends to the Bradford Bypass ...

A new four-lane freeway connecting Highway 400 in Simcoe county and Highway 404 in York region ...

An area of the province expected to experience rapid growth over the next 20 years.

The Bradford Bypass will take pressure off Highway 400 and existing east-west roads ...

Finally giving drivers in the region relief from endless gridlock and saving them up to 30 minutes each trip.

That is why our government, Mr. Speaker, will get the Bradford Bypass built. We’re getting it done.

Our commitment to building more highways does not end there.

In the east, we are starting work to widen Highway 401 to relieve congestion starting at Brock Road in Pickering and through eastern Ontario, all the way to Brockville.

Interjection.

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: And Belleville in between.

In Niagara region, we are restoring the QEW Garden City Skyway and connecting the city of St. Catharines to the town of Niagara-on-the-Lake.

But there’s more, Mr. Speaker:

In the southwest, we are building the new Highway 7 between Kitchener and Guelph ...

In the north, we are improving Highway 101 through Timmins to support commuters and the local mining and forestry industries.

Mr. Speaker, building roads, bridges and highways will end gridlock and get drivers moving again.

Our government also recognizes the importance of reliable public transit for commuters and families.

Which is why, over the next 10 years, we will invest over $60 billion for public transit, to fuel a huge expansion in subways, to fuel expansion in GO rail and other vital infrastructure.

We are expanding GO Transit rail service from Oshawa into Bowmanville on the Lakeshore East corridor ...

We are also expanding London GO rail service so commuters can travel from London all the way to Union Station.

And in the north ... we are investing $75 million to help bring passenger rail service back to northeastern Ontario.

You know, Mr. Speaker, I often wonder if the previous government thought the province ended somewhere just north of Queen’s Park. They said no to train service in the north. Well, we are saying yes.

And in Toronto, we will finish the job on the Ontario Line. This opposition is filled with naysayers who opposed the building of this line, of doubters who said it couldn’t or shouldn’t be done. Well, Premier, when you broke ground on the Ontario Line, you proved them wrong. Mr. Speaker, this government will get the Ontario Line done.

And we continue to make progress on the largest subway expansion in Canadian history.

Including connecting the Eglinton Crosstown West extension to Toronto Pearson International Airport ...

Building a direct line to one of the largest economic zones and employment zones in all of Ontario.

And, Mr. Speaker, we’re also getting it done for the people of Scarborough ...

Last year, we broke ground on the Scarborough subway extension.

Next, we will move forward on the Sheppard subway extension ...

Which will connect the Scarborough subway to the existing Don Mills terminus.

Mr. Speaker, make no mistake: This is what a government can accomplish when it chooses to say yes. This is what a province can build when a government is resolved to get it done.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I want to talk about how our plan is working for workers.

Mr. Speaker, whether we are talking about housing or highways.

Trains or transit.

One question remains.

In a time of rising demand, who is going to build all of this?

The simple answer is: workers.

Skilled workers.

And we need more of them. But for too long, previous governments said no to giving workers a fair shake. They ignored the frustrations of working people who simply wanted a fair shot to compete for the job with smart and safe protections, and earn an acceptable salary while doing it.

Monsieur le Président, il est grand temps que les travailleurs aient un gouvernement qui travaille pour eux aussi fort qu’eux travaillent pour l’Ontario.

Mr. Speaker, it is about time that workers had a government that works as hard for them as they do for Ontario.

And that is what we are going to do.

To begin, we are putting more money into their pockets ...

Raising the general minimum wage to $15.50 an hour on October 1, 2022.

We are also ensuring nobody falls through the cracks by extending the minimum wage to digital platform workers ...

Including workers who use ride-sharing apps.

We also introduced pay transparency, regular pay periods, and protected them from reprisal when they assert their rights ...

While maintaining the flexibility that attracts workers to these jobs.

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Our plan also says yes to recruiting more workers in the skilled trades. Mr. Speaker, by 2025, one in five jobs will be in the skilled trades.

These are in-demand jobs, exciting jobs, hands-on jobs.

Secure jobs that pay well. Jobs that require creativity and problem-solving.

Jobs that allow workers to punch their own ticket and help us build Ontario.

They are also jobs that are the victims of an unfair stigma ...

By some who view trade jobs as lesser jobs and trade workers as lesser workers ...

This corrosive belief is wrong.

And that is why our government is investing an additional $114 million over three years in our skilled trades strategy to break the stigma against the skilled trades.

Mr. Speaker, we have relaunched our successful Second Career program into Better Jobs Ontario ...

Expanding the program to include those with non-traditional work experience ...

Such as gig workers, newcomers and the self-employed ...

So they have every opportunity to build the skills they need to succeed.

Mr. Speaker, a four-year university degree is not the only path to a successful career.

Ontario’s network of colleges provides hands-on experience and real training for real jobs.

That is why we are expanding college degree-granting programs to build a pipeline of job-ready graduates in applied fields ...

Helping students get into the workforce faster.

We are making it easier for out-of-province workers and newcomers to work in Ontario.

With a 30-business-day service standard to speed up the process for recognizing their credentials ...

We’re also directing Skilled Trades Ontario to harmonize trading standards with other provinces for about a dozen trades.

For new Canadians, Ontario is the first province in Canada to remove licence barriers faced by new immigrants ...

And we are investing $67 million over three years through the Ontario bridge training program so we can connect well-trained immigrants with in-demand jobs in their communities.

Mr. Speaker, our economy needs these skilled workers. And our workers need our support. There’s no time to delay. It’s time to get it done.

And this brings me to the final chapter of our budget, Mr. Speaker—our plan to stay open.

We have been tested by the pandemic, Mr. Speaker. And it is likely the tests are not yet done. We can pick one of two roads. Some, including some in this House, would choose the road of constantly advocating for closing Ontario. They are the loud voices calling for more restrictions, more mandates, more division and more fear. For every solution, they have a problem. For every shred of optimism, they have a doubt. For every attempt to move forward, they have an obstacle that would take Ontario back.

Mr. Speaker, the second road does not take anything for granted. Rather than meet the challenges with surrender—we tackle them head on.

Our government has provided billions in targeted supports to help businesses throughout the pandemic.

And we’re investing an additional $300 million in our surgical recovery strategy. And now we are taking the next step by making record investments in hospital beds and long-term-care beds and in the nurses, doctors and support workers on the front lines of our health care system.

Mr. Speaker, through our new 10-year, $40-billion hospital capital plan ...

Our government is making investments in communities that have not seen a new hospital project in decades ...

In Brampton ...

Where our government is transforming the William Osler Health System’s Peel Memorial hospital into a new in-patient hospital with a 24/7 emergency department ...

In Kitchener-Waterloo ...

Where the Grand River Hospital and St. Mary’s General Hospital joint redevelopment project will lead to a new joint acute care facility.

And near and dear to my heart, Mr. Speaker, and thank you, Minister Elliott, in Uxbridge ...

Where the Uxbridge hospital redevelopment project will create a community health hub with nearby long-term-care services. I think that’s good.

In Windsor ...

Where we are in the planning stages for a new state-of-the-art acute care facility.

And in Scarborough ...

Where our government is investing to build a new in-patient tower and renovate the existing Birchmount Hospital site ...

The first phase of which includes an expansion of the emergency department, expected to support 50,000 patients each year.

From Collingwood, Kingston and Muskoka ...

To Chatham-Kent, Thunder Bay and Ottawa ...

To the single largest infrastructure investment in the history of Ontario to build a state-of-the-art Mississauga hospital ...

And to expand the Queensway Health Centre in Etobicoke ...

Mr. Speaker, these investments represent the most ambitious plan for hospital expansion in Ontario’s history ...

Supporting more than 50 major hospital projects and adding 3,000 new beds over the next 10 years.

Mr. Speaker, we are also making investments for the long-term care sector. After inheriting a broken system from the Liberal government—less than 700 net new beds were built by the previous government from 2011 to 2018. They left our entire long-term-care sector teetering on the brink. Zero new beds in Ajax; zero new beds in Pickering: Those are just two of the communities that were left behind.

Ontario seniors deserve better. Ontario families deserve better.

And our government is delivering.

We are saying yes to new beds and better beds—beds that provide comfort and dignity to our seniors.

We now have over 31,000 new and over 28,000 upgraded beds in the development pipeline.

And, in February of this year, we completed the first long-term-care home built through our accelerated build pilot.

Lakeridge Gardens, built in partnership with Lakeridge Health, was completed in just 13 months ...

And this new long-term-care facility will feature 320 long-term-care beds on the campus of the Ajax Pickering Hospital.

We aren’t waiting, Mr. Speaker. No more excuses. We are getting it done.

Mr. Speaker, a bed at a long-term-care facility should not be the only option for seniors requiring care.

Our loved ones and their families deserve the opportunity to find the care that’s right for them, including in the comfort of their own homes.

Our seniors have done so much to build this province.

That is why our government is taking action to support them in their choice of where they wish to receive the care they need, to allow more seniors to stay in the homes they love and live there longer.

Our government is investing $1.5 billion over the next three years to expand home care.

And we are proposing a new Ontario Seniors Care at Home Tax Credit ...

To help seniors and their families with home care medical expenses ...

Including attendant care, assistive breathing devices, hearing aids and walking aids.

This tax credit would build on our Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit ...

Which helps cover the costs for stair lifts, handrails and other renovations to help make homes safe and accessible, so we can preserve our hospital and long-term-care beds for those who truly need them the most.

Our plan to stay open also takes immediate action to support the front lines of our health care system, who have done so much to keep us safe.

We are providing Ontario nurses with a retention bonus of up to $5,000 ...

And making the wage enhancement to more than 158,000 personal support workers permanent ...

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And we have gone even further to support our front lines.

Since March 2020, our government has added 8,600 health care workers, and now we are investing an additional $230 million to deploy thousands of health care students in hospitals and help up to 1,000 internationally licensed nurses get accredited and into our health care system faster.

And, through our new learn and stay grant, 2,500 eligible post-secondary student who enrol in priority programs such as nursing will receive tuition support if they choose to work in the regions where they studied after graduation.

Mr. Speaker, building our capacity while making sure that every region in Ontario has access to quality health care is our plan, and we are getting it done.

And to ensure that our province never again has to rely on foreign jurisdictions for equipment, vaccines and other critical supplies ...

Our government is supporting the production of Ontario-made personal protective equipment (PPE).

Today, over 92% of Ontario’s PPE will come from Canada or Ontario, made in Canada by Canadian workers ...

Including the production of N95 masks at the newly expanded facility in Brockville ...

And, we are investing in our life sciences so that we can support the development and manufacturing of vaccines and other therapies ...

Right here in Ontario.

Mr. Speaker, I want to conclude by highlighting how our plan to get it done is a responsible one.

After years of a government that spent on the short term instead of building for the long term, Ontario now has a plan to invest ... and invest responsibly.

Over the next three years, our plan will see spending increase by an average of over 5% per year ...

With important investments in health care, education and critical infrastructure ...

Supported by a credible recovery plan that will eliminate the provincial deficit two years earlier than projected in the 2021 budget.

We have a plan. And that plan is working.

But the work is not over yet. And the job is not yet done.

It is time, Mr. Speaker, to finish the job.

And there is only one party in this House capable of the strong financial management necessary to make the investments that our province needs. That is this party.

And this is the government led by Premier Ford.

We are the party of yes.

We are the party of opportunity.

We are the party of hard work and big dreams.

We are the party of better jobs and bigger paycheques.

We are the party that is looking to the future with confidence and optimism.

Mr. Speaker, we have a real plan that is working.

C’est notre plan pour passer à l’action.

And we are ready to get it done for the people of Ontario.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to ask the members to please take their seats.

The member for Waterloo.

Ms. Catherine Fife: On behalf of Her Majesty’s loyal opposition, it is my pleasure to respond to budget 2022.

Speaker, this budget misses the mark on so many levels. It demonstrates in black and white how disconnected this government is from the people of Ontario, and I would say we now fully understand why this government is dropping this platform/budget and then running away from Queen’s Park.

After everything we have been through, everything that the people of Ontario have been through, today was an opportunity to lay out a real plan to fix health care, to fix seniors’ care, to fix the crisis in housing, to get rid of Premier Ford’s low-wage policy. People in this province have been begging for services. They have protested. They have marched. They have shown up here at Queen’s Park for years against this government. They want health care and education to be a priority for the government.

What are you going to say, on that side of the House, to a parent with a child who is on the autism spectrum when your budget doesn’t even mention autism? What are you going to say to them? There are 50,000 children on a wait-list.

This government chose not to address the call to action on public services. Once again, this government made a choice to fail the people of this province. Instead, we see future cuts to the things people need most and billions of dollars heading to his buddies on unnecessary and wasteful boondoggles.

The cover of your budget features smog—I leave you with that. As if the climate emergency was not real, there are highways to houses that no one can afford—

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The government side will come to order. The member for Waterloo has the floor.

Interjection.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Carleton will come to order.

The member for Waterloo.

Ms. Catherine Fife: The cover of this budget/platform features highways to houses that no one can afford. What today has made clear is that this government is completely out of touch with everyday Ontarians. What today has made clear is that we need change and we need it now. Ontario can’t wait another four years. People need and deserve hope in the province of Ontario, and they need support. They are begging the government for services, and you have given them smog and highways to houses that they can’t afford.

Especially after suffering through a pandemic, when this government chose not to invest in keeping people safe—which then caused our economy to shut down and schools to close for an extended period of time. The province of Ontario had the longest closure of schools in this country because of decisions that this government made.

People need tangible ways to make life more affordable and improve their lives. They need help with prescription drug bills. They need to be able to get their kid to a dentist. They need to not worry about finding the money to pay for mental health supports. They need affordable rent and better schools for their kids.

Our public education system is not going to get stronger when you reduce in-year funding by $1.3 billion; it is just not possible. Our economy won’t adapt to economic challenges with a $685-million reduction to post-secondary education. What progressive province in this country is reducing funding in post-secondary education? A cut of $632 million to social services is a slap in the face to the people who have paid the highest price during this pandemic.

Speaker, it is high time that Ontarians see themselves and their needs reflected in a government. It is long overdue. If we come together on June 2 and work together as Ontarians do and have done, we can get these things done.

With that, Mr. Speaker, I move adjournment of debate.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Waterloo has moved the adjournment of the debate. Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

Debate adjourned.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Does the Minister of Finance wish to introduce a bill at this time?

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: Yes.

Introduction of Government Bills

Plan to Build Act (Budget Measures), 2022 / Loi de 2022 pour favoriser le développement (mesures budgétaires)

Mr. Bethlenfalvy moved first reading of the following bill:

Bill 126, An Act to implement Budget measures and to enact and amend various statutes / Projet de loi 126, Loi visant à mettre en oeuvre les mesures budgétaires et à édicter et à modifier diverses lois.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? Carried.

First reading agreed to.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Would the Minister of Finance care to briefly explain his bill?

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: No, I’m fine. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Orders of the day? I recognize the government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: No further business.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): There being no further business, this House stands adjourned until September 12 at 10:15 a.m.

The House adjourned at 1650.