Ontario’s elections have demonstrated clearly that our province is mobilizing for change. People across the province are demanding good, permanent full-time jobs. We are fighting back against the draining of public coffers through corporate tax cuts, and demanding respect and funding for the public services that make this province great. I assure you OPSEU will hold this Liberal minority government accountable.
I am proud of the level of political engagement this union has demonstrated during the past month. OPSEU member mobilizers and activists have been on the ground working in campaign offices across the province since the writ was dropped. From working phone banks and producing campaign materials to canvassing and dropping literature, we have much to celebrate regarding the success of our role in the outcome of this election. In addition, I want to personally commend four long-time OPSEU members – David Lundy, David Parkhill, Karen Gventer and Paul Johnstone, along with retired Executive Board member Doris Middleton – who made the exceptional political commitment of running for public office.
Liberals lost 19 seats and went from a majority to a minority government, Conservatives lost their predicted majority through their lacklustre campaign, and Andrea Horwath has led the NDP to a level of support in this province that it has not seen since 1990. This outcome bodes well for the future of public services in this province. We can go back to work today knowing that we are stronger than ever as we continue to lobby, mobilize and negotiate for a better Ontario.
I would like to personally congratulate NDP leader Andrea Horwath on the impressive gains made by her party. We have all drawn hope from the solidarity experienced during the recent celebrations of Jack Layton’s life and contribution to Canada. Andrea took that groundswell of support and through her strong leadership turned it into seven more NDP seats in Ontario. That means a strong voice and powerful ally for good jobs and public services in this province. Andrea and her caucus can be assured of OPSEU’s continued support as we continue to work together to make Ontario a province where we all want to live and work.
OPSEU’s membership is what makes us strong. We have voted. Now let’s see what we can accomplish with this new kind of Ontario.
Warren (Smokey) Thomas