Every week, OPSEU's We Own It campaign publishes a newsletter called The We Own It Weekly. It's a round-up of news and information about the growing movement to protect communities from privatization.
And here's the latest issue:
Thanks for helping design our candidate survey
A huge We Own It thank you to the many people who took the time to help us decide what questions we should put to all of the candidates in the upcoming election!
More than 1,500 of you weighed in on the potential candidate questions—many of you suggested questions we hadn't even thought of.
We'll now go through all of your valuable feedback. And soon, we'll publish our finished We Own It candidates survey that we can all start encouraging our candidates to fill out.
Together, we'll figure out where every candidate in every riding stands on the issues of public services and privatization.
In the news
The mayor of Pittsburgh asked a "blue-ribbon" panel of business, community, and academic leaders whether privatizing the city's water system is a good idea. They say no.
"The panel’s recommendation is to keep PWSA public," wrote the panel in The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "Build on the progress that’s been made during the past year … creating a world-class water and sewer utility committed to providing safe drinking water at affordable rates."
The main reason for the panel's pro-public recommendation: private costs too much.
"A private company has an obligation to provide a return for its investors, which would undoubtedly make rates even higher," wrote the panel, adding that, "privatization significantly increases the cost of financing water and sewer projects."
A Texas-based corporation has purchased the 72 opioid treatment clinics, 19 pharmacies, and one residential treatment centre that had previously been owned by a company called the Canadian Addiction Treatment Centres.
Health care experts say the sale raises serious questions about the way addictions treatment is funded in Ontario.
"It should make OHIP [the Ontario Health Insurance Plan] really wonder about the fact that this chain of clinics is so profitable that an American company thought that there was an investment opportunity here," Dr. Melson Kahan told The Globe and Mail.
The UK's Public Accounts Committee is criticizing the government for privatizing an environmental funding organization called the Green Investment Bank.
"This confirms our worst fears that this ground-breaking institution, a world first, was axed for short term gain and without properly assessing either its transformational impact or untapped potential," said policy analyst Ed Matthew in Business Green.
"It was economic vandalism of the first order by a Treasury that had spent 200 years fighting the principle of a public bank. They wanted to kill it before it was even established. They got their way and we will all be poorer for it."
We Own It Events
Join We Own It at the Windsor Spitfires Game
Tuesday, March 27, 7 pm to 10 pm, WFCU Centre, Windsor, ON
Ottawa Town Hall on Privatization
Wednesday, March 28, 7 pm to 8:30 pm, Nepean Sportsplex, Hall F
Kenora Town Hall on Public Services
Wednesday, April 4, 6:30 p.m., Lakeside Inn, Kenora