HAMILTON — POLITICS – Official Opposition NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is proposing that a package of worker and small business supports be put in place now for any person or local business that loses income due to the Omicron wave.
“I want working people and local businesses to be kept whole through this wave of COVID,” said Horwath. “After everything they’ve been though, people deserve to rest easy in the knowledge that this wave cannot break them.
“During this pandemic, Doug Ford gave big box stores an advantage over local businesses. He also gave more than $200 million in pandemic support to corporations that didn’t qualify and didn’t need the help, while turning away the little guys. Those choices and mistakes, combined with lockdown after lockdown, has left a lot of mom-and-pop shops in dire financial straits, and a lot of jobs at risk. We have to take action to protect them.”
The Ford government has imposed a 50 per cent capacity limit on venues that hold more than 1,000 people. The Science Table is recommending further capacity limits in a short, temporary circuit breaker. Meanwhile, federal programs have wound down, leaving workers that don’t qualify for employment insurance, and businesses, with nowhere to turn if COVID or public health measures impact them.