Ontario's families will wait for years to benefit from McGuinty's "war" on poverty.

    TORONTO, March 22 /CNW Telbec/ - From parents on social assistance to
workers making minimum wage, working families are being told to wait years
before they can benefit from McGuinty's provincial budget tabled today.
    "If you're a parent on social assistance, you were promised 4 years ago
that the clawback of the national child benefit supplement would be ended,"
says Sid Ryan, President of CUPE Ontario. " Now parents are being told they
will need to wait another five years before it is fully eliminated. That's a
9 year promise and that's unacceptable."
    "For those on social assistance, including Ontario Works and Ontario
Disability support Plan, today's increase of a miserly 2% will mean that the
purchasing power of the welfare cheque today is worth less than when
Mike Harris left office, once you factor in inflation," says Ryan. "This is a
disgraceful indictment of the McGuinty Liberals."
    "If you're a worker making minimum wage, you're being told that you will
have to wait three years before you can make a $10.00 minimum wage. Try
telling that to the 1.2 million people earning less than $10 a year who are
trying to escape the poverty trap."
    School board workers had hoped that, with a federal infusion of
$1.1 billion Canadian Social Transfer to Ontario announced in Monday's federal
budget, McGuinty would free up the estimated $375 million desperately needed
for school operations.
    "There is nothing in this budget to settle growing labour unrest among
school board workers, some of whom are already on strike because they are
burnt out from being overworked," says Ryan.
    "McGuinty's Liberals didn't wait to implement an immediate 25% wage
increase for well-heeled politicians yet have no qualms imposing wait times on
Ontario's poor," he added.

For further information:

For further information: Valerie Dugale, CUPE Communications, (647)
225-3685; Sid Ryan, President, CUPE Ontario, (416) 209-0066

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Canadian Union of Public Employees - Ontario Regional Office

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