Get the Economic Fundamentals Right for Jobs and Growth
26 September 2012
QUEEN’S PARK: Ontario can once again be a place where budgets are balanced, jobs are created and new Canadians achieve their dreams, but only if we get the fundamentals right – and central to this is to modernize the province’s outdated labour laws, PC Leader Tim Hudak said today.
Hudak made the comments during a roundtable discussion with representatives from leading Chinese-Canadian media outlets. Hudak noted a 2012 study by The Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants which found that over 60 percent of new Canadians said finding a job was the biggest challenge they faced when it comes to settlement and integration.
“Urgent action is needed to turn our economy around, rein in nine years of reckless overspending and help people secure good-paying jobs,” Hudak said. “I’ve repeatedly said we need an integrated and comprehensive plan that gets the economic fundamentals right and will lead to job creation,” Hudak added.
Deputy Leader Christine Elliott, chair of the Jobs Task Force, added that “we need to go in a new direction for competitiveness and job creation – and the ideas we have put forward in Paths to Prosperity: Flexible Labour Markets propose a way forward.”
The policy paper proposes action in four key areas: giving the individual worker a choice on becoming or remaining a union member; making union leaders more accountable to unionized employees; modernizing tendering rules to open up more government work to private sector competition; and reforming Ontario’s workplace agencies for a more flexible workforce and job creation.
Other ideas put forward by the Ontario PCs include:
- Freeze on new government spending, a mandatory, across-the-board government employee pay freeze for two years and reining in costly government union contract settlements;
- Reduce the cost of doing business by lowering taxes and treating energy as a cornerstone of economic growth;
- Change the attitude of government to welcome job creators, not deter them with regulations and red tape; and
- Create 200,000 skilled-trade jobs by allowing employers to take on additional apprentices. This means more electricians, ironworkers and carpenters.
“Increasingly, Ontarians know that these are the necessary steps we need to take to unleash our province’s true economic potential, leverage our competitive advantages and most importantly, create private-sector jobs,” Hudak concluded.