News - Press Release
Press Release

'Promise made, promise betrayed:' Ford ministers break pledges not to privatize services

Publication Date

Monday, March 4, 2019 - 1:30pm

Toronto – OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas is calling out two Ford government cabinet ministers for breaking specific promises they made on the campaign trail not to privatize any more public services.
 
“Looks like Steve Clark and Todd Smith have a new slogan: ‘Promise Made, Promise Betrayed,’” said Thomas. “Before the election, they had their photos taken while signing pledges promising not to privatize any more services. But once they got elected, they’ve been part of a government that’s trying to privatize everything in sight.
 
“Can we trust anything they say?”
 
While they were in opposition both Clark and Smith signed the “Public Services Pledge.” It was widely distributed by OPSEU members and community allies during OPSEU’s successful We Own It campaign for quality public services.

Steve Clark with We Own It

Todd Smith We Own It 

The pledge that the two politicians signed says: “I pledge to protect quality public services by refusing to privatize any public service or asset, and by actively working to repatriate services and assets that have been privatized in the past.” 
 
But since the election, Clark and Smith have been silent as their government brings in privatization schemes across the entire public service, including in health care, justice, social services, cannabis sales, transit, and autism services. 
 
“Shows what their word is worth,” said OPSEU First Vice-President / Treasurer Eduardo (Eddy) Almeida. “Most people take it seriously when they sign their name to something. But in Ford Nation, it’s obviously OK to say or sign anything to get a vote and then do exactly the opposite once they’re in power.”
 
Thomas said Clark and Smith – and the rest of Ford’s MPPs – will have a hard time getting re-elected if they keep betraying the trust of the people who voted for them.
 
“Our We Own It campaign showed that three out of every four Ontarians are sick of the high costs and shoddy services that are the hallmark of privatization,” said Thomas. “Tens of thousands of people signed up to support We Own It, and you can be sure they’ll think twice about voting for politicians who don’t keep their word and instead put corporate profits before ‘the people’.”

For more information: 
Warren (Smokey) Thomas, 613-329-1931