TORONTO, Oct. 30 /CNW/ - This afternoon Premier Dalton McGuinty and his
cabinet were sworn in with a focus on bringing equality and fairness to all
Ontarians. The second majority mandate for the liberals will focus on the
anti-poverty agenda and bringing our underrepresented and most vulnerable
peoples into the fold, says the College Student Alliance (CSA).
"Ontario's college and college/university students welcome the focus on
our most vulnerable and underrepresented citizens in Ontario," says Tyler
Wiles, President of the College Student Alliance. "We also welcome new
Minister John Milloy - Member of Provincial Parliament for Kitchener Centre -
to his new portfolio as the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities.
Students are ready to get back to work on improving the accessibility,
affordability and transferability of our colleges and universities for all
Since coming to power in 2003 the McGuinty government has made
postsecondary education a priority ministry. They have turned the tables from
cuts and under funding to major investments and commitments aimed at making
Ontario competitive in the ever growing knowledge based economy. After a
comprehensive review led by former Premier Bob Rae; Premier McGuinty announced
the 'Reaching Higher' plan and its investment of $6.2 billion over five years.
"Students will now be looking to Minister Milloy to lead the Ministry of
Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) and Ontario along with Premier
McGuinty into a new phase of Reaching Higher," says Wiles. "Reaching Higher
was undoubtedly the largest investment in postsecondary education in 40 years,
but that investment is set to expire in 2009-10 and there is much more that
needs to be tackled."
With a pending labour shortage in the province of approximately 360,000
expected by 2025, Ontario college per student funding still lagging well
behind the rest of the country and rising student debt; the Liberals will have
some major challenges to overcome in their next mandate if Ontario is to
continue to be the economic engine of Canada.
"The CSA and its members across the province have been speaking out about
these issues," says Tyler Charlebois, Director of Advocacy. "The time to move
forward is now!"
The College Student Alliance (CSA) is an advocacy and services
organization which has been proudly serving Ontario's college and
college/university students since 1975. The CSA currently represents 16
colleges and 23 student councils with over 109,000 full-time student members
throughout the province.
For further information:
For further information: Tyler Charlebois, Director of Advocacy, T:
(416) 340-1212, C: (416) 346-9951, E: Charlebois@csaontario.org