NDP Says Ford Government Lowered Canadian Content to 10 Per Cent from 25 Per Cent

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Doug Ford and Minister Greg Rickford at Alstom
Doug Ford and Minister Greg Rickford at Alstom

QUEEN’S PARK – POLITICS – The Doug Ford government secretly cut the Canadian content of Ontario Line train cars to just 10 per cent, down from the required minimum of 25 per cent. Official Opposition NDP Leader Andrea Horwath said that’s a bad decision for jobs, and hardworking Ontarians.

“Hundreds of hardworking Thunder Bay families don’t know how they’re going to pay the bills once the latest round of Alstom layoffs kicks in,” said Monteith-Farrell. “We know Doug Ford wasn’t fighting to fix this problem. But to now know that he was actually working behind our backs to make it worse — to ship more of our good manufacturing jobs to other countries — is despicable.

“I want all of Alstom’s workers to know I am thinking of you and your families, and we’re going to fight for every job, so more of what we need is made-in-Ontario. We need to do everything we can to get people back to work so they can build their best lives right here in Thunder Bay.”

“My heart is with the hundreds of hardworking Thunder Bay families that are coping with the terrible news of more layoffs in the transit manufacturing sector. There are sleepless nights ahead for those folks as they figure out how to keep up with the mortgage and bills,” said Horwath.

“To know that Doug Ford was working behind all our backs to ship good manufacturing jobs to other countries is a complete betrayal of Ontario workers. We can build so much of what we need right here in Ontario. We should be fixing our manufacturing sector by increasing Canadian content — not cutting it deeper and laying off more hard-working Ontarians.”

Since 2008, Ontario has mandated that all transit vehicles bought with provincial money must have at least 25 per cent Canadian content. Horwath’s NDP has obtained the request for proposals for the Ontario Line’s cars, which shows Canadian content lowered to just 10 per cent.

NDP MPP Judith Monteith-Farrell says that change could make all the difference for working people in Thunder Bay. The Alstom transit vehicle manufacturing facility announced another round of layoffs — taking the plant that used to have 1,200 workers down to just 75 staff.