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Hello <<First Name>>,

This afternoon, we were presented with another disappointing announcement from the Minister of Education. For weeks, parents, educators and public health experts have raised concerns with the government's plans for a safe re-open. The government will allow school boards to access existing emergency funds, providing no new investments for a safe re-open in September. One wonders why this measure took so long to introduce with school only 3 weeks away.

The safe re-opening of schools is a vital priority and should have been treated as such from the very beginning. We could have used the summer to hire educators and staff and procure the necessary space to allow for safer social distancing. We cannot cut corners on this issue. We need proactive measures now, rather than reactive measures after community spread has occurred.

A reminder that we will be hosting a virtual discussion on a Safe School Reopening on Facebook Live from 7pm to 8pm. Please join us at www.facebook.com/faisalhassanndp where I will be joined by parents and educators from the community.

Update on Flooding:
l am happy to announce that our provincial petition on flood mitigation is now available online! Feel free to share this link widely with family and friends so we can finally get action from the province on this desperately needed infrastructure. The Black Creek Alliance is hosting a community awareness march where they will be asking all three levels of government to work together on this important issue (see community section below). Our office has reached out to the local Member of Parliament and City Councillor to begin those discussions. We will be sure to keep you up to date on any progress.


Fiscal Update:
Yesterday the Province released the first quarter fiscal update and unfortunately, it falls short on the priorities of Ontarians. The Government is not going far enough with investments in a safe re-open in September. Also, we found a disappointing under-investment in  Health and Long Term Care, spending $466 Million less than the allotted budget! We can do better. To learn more, please see the press release below.

As always, my office is here to help. Please call at 416-243-7984, or email us at fhassan-co@ndp.on.ca.

Take care, stay home, and wash your hands.

Best Regards,



Faisal Hassan
Member of Provincial Parliament
York South—Weston
 
FAISAL IN THE COMMUNITY:
News Release

Fiscal update has zero dollars for schools, a pittance spent on long-term care’s COVID-19 battle

 

Ford’s priorities lead to penny pinching in all the wrong places: NDP

QUEEN’S PARK — The Doug Ford government’s first-quarter fiscal update shows that $0 has been added to the education budget, and that since April, the government spent a mere $218 million more on long-term care — nowhere near enough to buy the iron ring nursing homes needed.

“Parents, teachers, education workers, students and school boards are imploring the government to fund smaller, safer classes — and the cost of failing to do that is unthinkable,” said NDP Finance critic Sandy Shaw. The Ford government previously announced about $300 million – a completely inadequate amount — for their bargain basement back-to-school scheme, but that money doesn’t appear in the update released Wednesday.

“The government is pinching pennies on the backs of our children, and that choice is so risky for our children’s health and wellbeing. We should be spending what it takes to get all kids into smaller, safer classes — to keep them safe, and to protect our progress in the fight against COVID-19.”

Shaw said it’s devastating to learn that not only did Ford underspend his health and long-term care budget by $466 million, but he spent just $218 million in the raging battle against COVID-19 in long-term care homes.

“More than 1,845 seniors and frontline health care workers tragically died in long-term care homes. It’s abundantly, heart-breakingly clear that $218 million was nowhere near enough to fund the iron-ring around nursing homes that was needed,” said NDP finance critic Sandy Shaw.

“Doug Ford spent nearly two years making deep cuts to public health, to schools and to long-term care, and it’s clear that the COVID-19 pandemic has not changed his priorities,” said Shaw. “If the NDP was in charge of the budget right now, we’d be doing whatever it takes to make classes smaller and safer, and to make sure they have proper ventilation. We’d be sparing no expense in long-term care. We’d be funding public health units. We’re urging Doug Ford to go back to the drawing board, and invest in what really matters to Ontario families.”

Background

  • After the 2019-20 budget made deep cuts, Doug Ford stripped even more out of things like long-term care by underspending. According to an FAO report, the government spent $466 million less than it promised to in the 2019-20 budget, including:
  • $49 million less for public health programs
  • $65 million less for hospitals, long-term care homes and community programs
  • $314 million less for hospital infrastructure projects
  • The first-quarter fiscal update allocates just $100 million for public health units
  • $218 million, the total new amount for long-term care, is 0.1 per cent of the province’s total spending
Community News: 

Frontlines is providing a community pin-up resource to share events, jobs, programs and volunteering activities in York South—Weston. Visit https://frontlinespinup.ca/ for details.

Enough is enough. Join the Black Creek Alliance for a Community Awareness March, and to demand that all three levels of government work together to solve the infrastructure issues plaguing our neighbourhoods. Masking and social distancing measures will be in effect. For more detail, email improveblackcreek@gmail.com, or through their facebook page HERE.
Toronto ACORN will be hosting two tenant rights events over the coming week. These sessions will cover topics such as rent, evictions, maintenance and repairs. There will be time for questions as well. For tomorrow, Aug. 14, click HERE, and for Thursday Aug. 20, click HERE.

Exciting news for theatre fans! Shakespeare in Action is partnering with Theaturtle to present Alphonse in the Park in Little Avenue Memorial Park from August 20 - 23rd.  Toronto's first professional outdoor theatre production of the COVID-19 era will start its tour in the heart of Weston.   All safety protocols issued by the City of Toronto and Province of Ontario will be followed.   For more details click HERE.

York South—Weston's little fighter Eva Batista turned one-year-old recently. Happy belated birthday! I was happy to present the family with a scroll honouring the occasion. The battle for her life-saving medication continues. Please consider a donation in support of the cause HERE.

Our friends at Supercoffee in Mount Dennis have announced that they will be matching donations to the FYI scholarship fund through August 14! All you need to do is donate and add “supercoffee” to the comment field in the payment area. Thank you to Supercoffee for this generous initiative! To donate, click HERE.
York West Active Living Centre is continuing to provide virtual programming to residents. For a program schedule, click HERE.

The Toronto Community Benefits Network is highlighting opportunities in the different skilled trades, starting with opportunities with Carpenters Union Local 27. There are opportunities for local residents to earn up to $100,000 while learning a trade with benefits and a pension. For more information, or to apply, call or text 647-697-7924 or email at jobs@communitybenefits.ca.
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Copyright © 2020 Member of Provincial Parliament - York South-Weston, All rights reserved.


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