No faith-based funding without public support: Tory

    Tory listens and announces free vote on legislation to expand public

    TORONTO, Oct. 1 /CNW/ - Ontario Progressive Conservative Party Leader
John Tory today announced that proposed legislation to expand public education
will only proceed after extensive consultation and support from Ontarians
through their elected representatives.
    "I have always believed that listening to the people is at the very core
of leadership," said Tory. "That is how I have always conducted myself as a
leader - in business, in community work, in sports, and now in public life. I
cannot imagine leading any other way."
    In a speech to the Economic Club of Toronto, Tory spoke about the
passionate debate thus far in the election campaign about including children
in faith-based schools in public education. Tory said any bill will only
proceed with the support of the people, through their elected representatives.
    "MPPs will be allowed a free vote, so they are at liberty to vote their
conscience and represent the wishes of their constituents," said Tory. "In
this significant way, the public can be more involved in the decision making.
They have expressed strong concerns, and I have heard them."
    "On this issue, I have been open and honest about my views, and the
motivation behind them. I have been clear today, before the election, that
there will be a free vote and I have declared my own position in the matter;
and I have always had the same position in public as I have had in private,"
said Tory.
    Tory said that while many people have talked to him about the proposal to
expand the public school system, many more have talked about the issues that
matter to them most - about finding a family doctor, about struggling to keep
up with the cost of living, about safe communities and about restoring trust
in elected leaders.
    "I have said from the beginning that this is not the most important issue
in Ontario today," said Tory. "So let's talk about what the most important
issues are, and why Ontario needs new leadership to make a difference on those

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For further information:

For further information: Mike Van Soelen, (647) 722-1760

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