By Naureen Rizvi, Unifor Ontario Regional Director
With one week left in this campaign, I must admit, I’m nervous. I can’t stop thinking about what Doug Ford as Premier would mean for us in Ontario.
I’m worried about what Doug Ford’s cuts will cost members who rely on Ontario’s health care system, and who were hoping to finally have relief with out of control prescription medication and child care costs.
I’m dreading how his plan to cancel the $15 an hour minimum wage will hurt the one in four workers in this province who today, take home less than $15 an hour. There is no good reason to stop the rollout of the increased minimum wage.
Workers can’t trust Doug Ford to stand up for us, or to be honest about his intentions. We’re one week away from Election Day and he still hasn’t been able to put out a costed platform, or come clean about his plans for public service cuts.
If you’ve been watching the headlines these past few weeks, worrying like I am about the damage that a Premier Ford would do, it’s time to commit to take action.
Most polls have Ford’s conservatives neck-in-neck with Andrea Horwath’s Ontario NDP, with razor-thin margins in ridings across the province. In this election, every vote counts.
But voters won’t budge in their support for Ford unless we give them a reason to and engage our neighbours in honest conversations. Every single door that we knock on helps turn one more voter away from his risky agenda and reveal how his plan will only benefit the rich.
Unifor members voted in December at the Ontario Regional Council to put every effort into stopping the conservatives from taking power and supporting progressive candidates. It’s become clear that Andrea Horwath’s Ontario NDP is the party best slated to stop Doug Ford. There is momentum behind change for the better.
I urge you to, in this final week, consider the type of province that you want to live in, and know that your union is campaigning for a better, more equal Ontario.
I’ll be volunteering in Whitby this weekend for NDP candidate Niki Lundquist. If you’ve never volunteered before, this election is the best time to take a first step, before we have to face a Ford government.
Unifor members have been incredibly engaged in this election, many for the first time. I’ve met first time voters and volunteers in every riding that I visit, Unifor members who are choosing this election to take that initial step into political action.
That’s because they recognize that this election will shape our future for years to come. The difference is stark. We have a chance to build lasting public services and address inequality, but only if we convince a few more Ford voters to build a better future with us.
Your actions can help determine who forms the next Government of Ontario. Will you join me in campaigning for change for the better? Contact your local candidate’s office to get involved.