TORONTO, March 5, 2012 /CNW/ - Two of Ontario's top unions are calling on Premier Dalton McGuinty to convene a meeting of business, labour, and government leaders to preserve public services and strengthen the province's economy.
Warren (Smokey) Thomas, President of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union and Wayne Fraser, Director of District 6 of the United Steelworkers, issued the call in an open letter published this morning in major newspapers.
"From main streets to boardrooms, women and men across this province are asking the same questions," the letter reads. "Where is the leadership to lead us out of the current downturn? Why can't we build a province that is both prosperous and compassionate?"
Budget pressures pose a challenge to the province, the leaders agree, but it is a challenge best met through discussion and consensus-building, not "a misguided drive for austerity" that threatens to turn Ontario into "a society of winners and losers, with very few winners."
The province needs to begin discussions now on an industrial strategy to respond to changes in the global economy, Fraser and Thomas say: "Periods of peril can be periods of opportunity if we enter into respectful discussion with those who make our economy work."
For further information:
Warren (Smokey) Thomas (613) 329-1931
Wayne Fraser (416) 577-4045