Safe Back to School Essential to Strong Economy

TORONTO – Steven Del Duca, Leader of the Ontario Liberal Party, made the following statement:

“Parents know firsthand that the only way we can get Ontario’s economy back on track is to get our kids safely back to school. Doug Ford’s fiscal update makes it clear that he has dropped the ball badly, and has no credible plan to get our kids back in classrooms safely come September. Without a new plan, Moms and Dads across Ontario will not have the peace of mind they need to get back to work and ensure that our economic recovery is successful.

“Doug Ford has consistently shown that he isn’t interested in investing in those being hardest hit by the pandemic – students, people of colour, women, vulnerable workers, tenants and small business entrepreneurs have all been left to fend for themselves while facing extraordinarily tough circumstances.”

“Now parents are being unfairly forced to make a choice between their kids and their careers. By stubbornly refusing to invest what’s needed to shrink class sizes, Doug Ford is undermining confidence in our public schools and destabilizing Ontario’s economic recovery.

“He hasn’t helped Ontario’s small businesses which have been battered during the pandemic and are struggling to survive. This lack of support will adversely impact the majority of Ontario workers — particularly women and people of colour — who are employed by this sector.

“Earlier this week, I called for school reopenings to be delayed if necessary, so that school boards could have more time to ensure the safety of kids, teachers, principals and support workers. This government has simply taken too long. Without a real plan, every option needs to be considered and advice taken from medical and education experts.”

“It has become clear that Doug Ford is unwilling to invest what’s needed. His plan would invest less than one dollar a day per child in public education. He’s treating our kids like an afterthought.”

“The clock is ticking. Ontarians need real leadership and Doug Ford must reconsider this plan, seek the best advice available from medical and education experts, and do the right thing. I urge him to do so immediately.”

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