February 5th, 2020

Horwath calls on Ford to pause public health cuts

QUEEN’S PARK – Official Opposition NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is calling on Doug Ford to return public health to 2019 funding levels, and commit to undertaking a review of the novel coronavirus outbreak response to determine future provincial funding levels.

“I am so grateful to public health unit staff, and frontline health care and emergency services workers that have been protecting us all from this latest coronavirus outbreak, and caring for those affected in Ontario,” said Horwath. “The response of our public health staff in the face of the novel coronavirus has been outstanding, and we need to keep it that way.

“The information we learned from SARS was instrumental in developing our response plans to keep us safe from public health threats like coronavirus. We need to keep learning, as we move forward. That’s why I’m asking this government to restore funding for public health units to 2019 levels, and conduct a review to determine what provincial funding and resources public health units will need to keep Ontarians safe in the future.”

In 2019, the World Health Organization and World Bank issued a report warning that the chances of another pandemic are growing, and urged governments to invest much more in preparedness.

“Let’s make sure we can promise Ontarians, going forward, that we’re doing everything we can to protect their families,” said Horwath.