TORONTO, June 9, 2016 /CNW/ - The Ontario Public Service Employees Union is calling on the Ontario government to claw back millions in performance bonuses handed out to executives of the Pan Am Games and re-direct the funds to provincial public services.
"Ontario communities are suffering from cuts to vital services and skyrocketing hydro costs at the same time the provincial government is handing out performance bonuses to a bunch of executives who overshot their budget by 61 per cent," said OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas. "It doesn't make sense."
Thomas highlighted some of the recent provincial services impacted by government cuts.
"Premier Kathleen Wynne's Liberals have put families into panic mode with their plan to end autism funding," he said. "They've tried to close nine ServiceOntario offices without consulting the affected communities. They are cutting funding – and staff – at hospitals across the province. They are cutting education for children with disabilities. And they still haven't solved the crisis in correctional services," said Thomas. "Since Pan Am Games executives who received performance bonuses were supposed to be accountable to Ontarians, and failed to meet budget targets, Premier Wynne should return these funds to the public purse immediately."
According to Ontario's Auditor General, Ontario had initially committed $500 million to cover the costs of the Pan Am Games, but the total cost came in at $804 million to cover extra security, transportation and a secretariat to oversee the event. Despite the cost exceeding the budget by a whopping 61 per cent, the province still paid more than $5 million in performance bonuses to 53 senior staff, in addition to annual performance bonuses of $10.5 million.
OPSEU represents 130,000 Ontarians working in every corner of the province.
SOURCE Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)
For further information: Warren (Smokey) Thomas 613-329-1931