More Ontario Job Losses in the News

December 2, 2013

By Jim McDonell

Heinz is just the latest in a long list of large employers who are closing their facilities in Ontario, putting over 700 employees out of work.  Unfortunately, this is a tale that we are hearing far too often in Ontario.  These jobs are not disappearing, nor are they moving to another country; they are relocating to another neighbouring province or state in the US and Canada.

It’s time we looked beyond the tragic loss of the 700 plus direct jobs and the hundreds of indirect jobs that the town of Leamington is  now faced with during this holiday season to find the real root of the problem.  Why are we seeing the same headlines over and over again; Navistar leaving Chatham for Indiana, Xstrata leaving Timmins for Quebec, John Deere leaving Niagara for Wisconsin, Siemens leaving Hamilton for North Carolina, Caterpillar leaving London for Indiana, and on and on?  In fact, there have been 38,000 net manufacturing jobs lost since Kathleen Wynne became Premier and more than 300,000 lost since this Liberal government took over the province in 2003.  Ontario has lost its decades old title of the largest automobile manufacturing jurisdiction in North America, falling to third place behind Michigan and Mexico.  Our wage growth is dead last in Canada and people are worried about their jobs and pensions.

The Premier’s excuse of lower safety and environmental standards in the United States and other Canadian provinces just doesn’t wash.  Under the Mike Harris PC Government, Ontario was the number one job generator in North America.  The current job losses are an indictment of a decade of Liberal taxing, over-regulation, energy policies that drove up prices, and unjustified waste on the backs of Ontario’s middle class.  The proportion of Ontario workers who now work at the minimum wage has doubled since they took over government.

It’s time to change our direction and make Ontario a net generator of jobs by giving employers and entrepreneurs confidence in our province’s future.  We need a plan that will get hydro and WSIB rates under control, eliminate needless and expensive regulation, and direct the billions of dollars that this government wastes on politically motivated decisions to our health care and to building needed infrastructure.  It’s time to take action and stop passing the buck off to committees to review the problem, 37 committees in total since Kathleen Wynne took over as Premier.  We need a jobs plan that will provide Ontarians with good paying, skilled, advanced manufacturing jobs. We need action – Liberal self-serving excuses are no longer acceptable.