April 13th, 2021

NDP demand answers from Doug Ford on Laurentian

QUEEN’S PARK – Doug Ford needs to take immediate action and provide Laurentian with the funds it needs to stop the layoffs of over 100 faculty members and the closure of nearly 70 programs, said NDP MPPs Jamie West (Sudbury) and France Gélinas (Nickel Belt) during question period Tuesday.

“Premier Doug Ford and Minister of Colleges and Universities Ross Romano believe students, staff and the community around Laurentian aren't worth investment. We disagree. The massive cuts at Laurentian are devastating,” said West.

“Yesterday over 100 faculty members received termination-notices at Laurentian University. The University is also cutting nearly 70 programs, including whole departments, many of which are unique Indigenous and francophone programs which Laurentian is mandated to support. They’re also cutting programs like math, entrepreneurship, nursing and midwifery. Laurentian University is Sudbury’s third largest employer. How is Doug Ford going to address the many people who are losing their jobs, amidst a pandemic, because the government refused to fund and protect this public university?”

Gélinas said Laurentian’s thousands of students are worried and deserve answers.

“Instead of being focused on their final projects and studying for their year-end exams, Laurentian students have been worried about their futures,” said Gélinas. “Ross Romano, the minister of colleges and universities, kept promising to protect Laurentian’s students and ensure their studies weren’t disrupted. But thousands of students woke up Monday morning to learn that their programs and departments had been cut; and, that their teachers, supervisors and mentors were being laid off.

Laurentian University is designated under the French Language Services Act. That means its French programs are protected.

* an earlier version of this media release referenced the engineering and economics departments, which continue to operate at Laurentian University.