Get the Fundamentals Right for a Competitive Ontario: Hudak
12 July 2012
TORONTO – Ontario can once again be a place where budgets are balanced, jobs are created and economic prosperity ensues, but only if we get the fundamentals right – and central to this is to modernize the province’s outdated labour laws, Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak said today.
Hudak made the comments while touring Fiera Foods, an Ontario-based manufacturer with a rapidly growing leadership presence in the global marketplace of frozen baked goods. Hudak noted that Ontario’s once-thriving manufacturing sector has been devastated under the current government’s approach. As evidence, the province has lost 300,000 manufacturing jobs while adding 300,000 bureaucratic government jobs.
“Ontario’s at a crucial inflection point and urgent action is needed to turn our economy around and rein in overspending,” 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.
“Our PC ideas include affordable energy, lower taxes, changing the attitude in government by welcoming job creators, not deterring them with regulations and red tape, and a bold revision of this province’s 1940s era labour laws that hamper our ability to compete as proposed in our Paths to Prosperity Flexible Labour Markets white paper,” Hudak added.”
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.
Fiera Foods Chief Executive Officer Boris Serebryany said “It’s always good for companies, like ours, when Ontario’s economy is growing, people are employed with good-paying jobs and there are new customers we can sell our products to. This is why it is so important for government to create the right environment for businesses to succeed.”
Other ideas put forward by the Ontario PCs to create jobs and kick-start growth include:
- Reining in spending with a mandatory public sector wage freeze and allowing businesses and private sector unions to compete for government contracts;
- Reducing the cost of doing business by lowering taxes and treating affordable energy as a cornerstone of economic growth; and
- Creating 200,000 jobs in the skilled trades by allowing employers to take on more 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.