NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo’s historic bill to protect LGBTQ youth passes second reading

QUEEN’S PARK – Today, NDP critic for LGBTQ issues, Cheri DiNovo’s bill to protect LGBTQ youth from so-called conversion therapy passed second reading with all party support.

DiNovo dedicated the bill to Leelah Alcorn, the 17-year-old Ohio young trans woman who left a suicide note on her blog, and walked to her death in front of a tractor trailer in December. Her suicide note explained how her parents rejected her, and then took her to therapists who rejected her — therapists who tried to “fix” her. 

Her final words: “Fix society. Please.”

NDP calls for resignation of Liberal minister responsible for SAMS debacle

Queen’s Park – Today, NDP MPP for Hamilton Mountain, Monique Taylor, called on Premier Wynne to ask the minister responsible for the SAMS debacle to resign.

“No one is above accountability in this legislature.  But the Minister of Community and Social Services refuses to take responsibility for the SAMS fiasco.  Since November, families have been underpaid.Cheques have been too late to pay the rent.  Staff are overwhelmed and exhausted.  And just yesterday, SAMS had to be rebooted, forcing staff to reassess many of their cases,” Taylor said.  

Horwath appoints Chris Ball as Director, Communications and Strategic Planning

Andrea Horwath’s office today announced the appointment of Chris Ball as Director, Communications and Strategic Planning for the Ontario NDP Caucus.

Toronto city report reveals Liberal school closure plan puts over 2,000 child care spaces at risk

A report to Toronto City Council by city staff reveals that the Liberal plan for school closures is putting more than 2,000 child care spaces at risk, said Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath. 

“It’s hard enough for families in Toronto to find the child care they need. But the Liberals are making the problem even worse by forcing school closures that will also shut down dozens of child care centres,” said Horwath. 

Liberal government refuses to say how much Hydro One privatization will cost Ontario ratepayers

Queen’s Park – The Liberal government is refusing to say what impact the Premier’s hydro privatization plans will have on Ontario ratepayers. Last week Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath asked the Premier point blank, to “provide any guarantees that hydro rates will not go up as part of the Liberal plan to privatize Hydro One and local utilities.” The Premier could not, or would not, provide any assurances.

Liberals announce two-year freeze of homelessness prevention funding

With Ontario’s funding for Toronto’s housing programs falling below that of the Harper government next year,  the government today announced a two year freeze of  funding under the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative. 

“Today, the government announced that its cuts to Toronto’s housing programs will remain cut, and funding for homelessness prevention will be frozen for two years,” said DiNovo, NDP GTA Issues critic and MPP for Parkdale-High Park.

Andrea Horwath's Speech to March Provincial Council

Good morning New Democrats. Bonjour mes chères amis. How is everyone today? I’ve got to say, there is no greater feeling than walking into this room and seeing all of your familiar faces. Je suis fière d’etre ici avec vous.

I am excited to be here today, because, friends, I am proud to be a New Democrat. I am proud because of who we are and what we stand for as a party.

Watching a thousand New Democrats last convention, stand to support and applaud Susan Gapka as she told her story of standing up to prejudice.

Seeing Bill, Joyce and Arn in Sudbury drive all the way from London to Sudbury to help people with disabilities access the polls and exercise their right to vote.

Watching Tom Mulcair and our federal caucus’ principled stand for the right of all Canadians to privacy and freedom and for speaking up against attempts to incite hatred and intolerance.

Statement by Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath on the closure of Future Shop Canada

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath released the following statement.

"Ontario New Democrats stand with workers across our province and our country who are losing their jobs due to the closure of Future Shop Canada.

Statement by Ontario NDP Finance Critic Catherine Fife on the Sunshine List

Queen’s Park – Ontario NDP Finance Critic Catherine Fife released the following statement in response to the release of the Sunshine List. 

“The latest edition of the Sunshine List shows that even as she prepares to make more cuts to public services in the upcoming budget, Kathleen Wynne has done absolutely nothing to control the rise of outrageous public sector CEO salaries despite her pledge to do so.  She promised change when she became Premier. Instead we’re seeing the same old Liberal arrogance. She promised accountability and transparency. Instead the Premier’s office is under 4 separate OPP investigations and mired in cover-ups.

Liberal spin can’t hide real cuts to classrooms: NDP

Queen’s Park – Today, Ontario NDP Education Critic Lisa Gretzky released the following statement regarding next year’s education funding: 

“The Liberals’ cuts to schools will mean fewer supports for students, more layoffs, and even more school closures across the province. The Premier promised not to cut education, but she’s broken that promise to families. Parents will be appalled to learn that thirty-eight school boards will see less funding for special education next year, including over $6 million in special education cuts in Toronto alone. Province-wide, there will be $36 million less in funding for textbooks, classroom supplies, and educators’ salaries. And small schools will be particularly hard hit. At a time when we should be investing in students’ futures, the Liberals are cutting critical programs and forcing students to pay the price.”


NDP Standing Up for Healthcare, Education and Public Services. PCs and Liberals side together to vote for cuts and privatization

Today the Ontario Legislature debated an NDP Motion which called for an end to the Liberal government’s cuts to healthcare, education, childcare, transportation, housing and their reckless privatization plans. However, Liberal and Conservative MPPs sided together to vote against the motion which calls for investing in services, creating jobs, making life more affordable, and looking at greater tax fairness including rolling back existing corporate giveaways.

Ontario NDP calls to re-establish Anti-Racism Directorate

QUEEN’S PARK — Today in the legislature, NDP MPP Teresa Armstrong called on the Premier to commit to establishing an Anti-Racism Directorate to speak to issues of racial inequality in the province. 

“This past Saturday was the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, where we are reminded that not only does systemic racism continue to exist elsewhere, it persists here as well,” said Armstrong, MPP for London-Fanshawe. “Income inequality, unemployment and precarious employment continue to disproportionately affect racialized communities in the province.”

87,000 families desperate for affordable housing deserve better than “I don’t know” from Wynne government: NDP

QUEEN’S PARK — Cheri DiNovo, NDP GTA issues critic and long-time housing advocate, blasted the Liberal government today for cutting $86 million from Toronto’s social housing budget. 

“The Liberals can talk about being ‘progressive’ till they’re blue-in-the-face, but no progressive government would cut $86 million dollars from Toronto’s social housing budget,” said DiNovo, MPP for Parkdale-High Park. 

Liberal government indifferent to impact of nursing cuts on patient care

QUEEN’S PARK — As Ontario hospitals continue laying off more nurses almost daily, NDP Health critic France Gélinas asked the Minister of Health what it will take for the government to get the message that these job hurt patients and that these cuts should stop.

“During the last general election, the Premier and her Minister of Health said that they would not cut front-line care and that they would not cut nursing positions. Right now, hospitals are laying off nurses almost every single day,” said Gélinas, MPP for Nickel Belt. “Last week alone, we learned that Sudbury will lose 42 nurses and the Children's Hospital in Ottawa is cutting 50 registered nurses. And in Cambridge, it’s 22 registered nurses.”    

Statement from NDP Education Critic Lisa Gretzky on more delays for community hubs as Liberals force school closures

Ontario NDP Education Critic Lisa Gretzky released the following statement on the latest Liberal panel appointment.

“Today’s announcement won’t distract from the Liberals’ sorry record of failing to support community hubs – and won’t stop half-a-billion dollars in planned cuts to classrooms. As usual, the Liberals are saying one thing but doing the exact opposite. That’s why the new special advisor needs to speak out publicly against the Liberals’ plans for school closures in Toronto and oppose new accommodation review guidelines that restrict public input.

Ontario New Democrats Gearing Up to Fight Liberal Austerity Budget

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath laid out her priorities for when the Legislature returns on Monday. She said that New Democrats will fight to create and protect good jobs in Ontario. She pledged to hold the Liberals to account for their lack of integrity, for their scheme to hold a fire sale of public assets like Hydro One, and for their plan to cut vital public services like healthcare and education in the upcoming budget.

Delay changes threatening dental care access for vulnerable children: NDP Health critic

NDP Health critic France Gélinas sent the following open letter to the Minister of Health today urging a delay to implementation of changes that threaten to dramatically reduce access to dental care for low-income children and youth:


NDP LGBTQ critic introduces historic protections for LGBTQ youth

QUEEN’S PARK — NDP LGBTQ critic Cheri DiNovo introduced new legislation today to protect youth from therapy aimed at preventing them from growing up to be LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual or queer).

DiNovo, MPP for Parkdale-High Park, was inspired to introduce the historic legislation by the tragic suicide of Ohio trans teen Leelah Alcorn. 

On December 28, 17-year-old Alcorn left a suicide note posted on her blog, and walked to her death in front of a tractor trailer.