OSHAWA, ON, Sept. 6 /CNW Telbec/ - Dalton McGuinty owes it to Oshawa
autoworkers to be forthright about funding announcements affecting their
future livelihoods, said Sid Ryan Oshawa NDP candidate at a media conference
On June 19, 2007 McGuinty announced the Next Generation Jobs Fund - a
$650 million taxpayer-funded 'green jobs' initiative, using the GM Oshawa auto
plant and a car as a backdrop. The announcement led autoworkers, the local
media and many in Oshawa to believe that the fund money was targeted to auto
green jobs in manufacturing, research and technology. But in truth the fund is
open to all areas of the economy including advanced manufacturing, energy
production, forestry and agriculture.
Seven weeks after the June McGuinty fund announcement, GM shocked the
community by announcing that 1,200 workers would be laid off at the truck
plant. Those layoffs are on top of the 3,000 job cuts due in 2008 when car
plant # 2 is slated to close. Industry experts estimate that for every auto
job lost, five spinoff jobs are lost in manufacturing feeder plants and in the
"Oshawa can't stand any more of this kind of McGuinty support," said
Ryan. "Playing fast and loose with funding announcements that affect thousands
of working families in Oshawa is simply not fair. Oshawa deserves the truth
about a McGuinty future jobs fund that's going to be available to all
manufacturing sectors including agriculture and forestry - not just auto. That
means less provincial incentives are going to the auto sector."
Ryan is calling on McGuinty to be honest and straight-forward and tell
the people of Oshawa just how much of the $650 million will be targeted to the
auto sector and that any funding comes with strings attached to protect jobs,
including the recent layoffs.
"Let's not make jobs in Oshawa another McGuinty broken promise. If fund
incentives are not tied directly to job security, then they are nothing more
than corporate welfare," said Ryan.
Ontario's NDP have a plan that would show leadership to protect jobs and
give hard-working families a fair deal. The Jobs Plan includes:
- Investment initiatives in key sectors focused on protecting jobs,
instead of McGuinty's policies like a $650 million giveaway to industry
with no strings attached to retain jobs and corporate tax cuts, that
- A $10/hour minimum wage immediately.
- Stronger Employment Standards legislation to discourage plant closures,
provide protection for workers and encourage Ontario manufacturers to
stay and prosper in Oshawa.
- Jobs Protection Commissioner: Would negotiate new deals with banks,
employees, and creditors - to put troubled businesses back on a solid
footing - to protect communities - and save jobs.
"All Oshawa workers are right to feel that their economic security is
under attack and that the McGuinty track-record is not a good one. It's just
smoke and mirrors," says Ryan.
For further information:
For further information: Sid Ryan, Oshawa NDP, (416) 209-0066; Stella
Yeadon, Communications, (416) 578-8774