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Ontario Budget: Liberals Hide Austerity behind “Free Education”

kathleen wynne cares notOn February 25, the Ontario Liberals unveiled their budget for the 2016-17 fiscal year. The centrepiece of the 346-page document was a pledge to make post-secondary education free for families earning under $50,000 a year. The working poor have cause to celebrate: Premier Kathleen Wynne’s “activist” government seems to be finally living up to its name – but is it really? Or is this budget just another example of “talking left and governing right”?

Precarious Labour, Ontario’s Full-Time Problem

temps wantedAccording to a recent study from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives in June 2015, minimum wage jobs in Ontario have skyrocketed from 2.4 per cent of all employees in 1997 to 11.9 per cent in 2014. In other words, in 1997, one in forty Ontario workers were working for minimum wage. Today it’s one out of eight. While the total number of jobs in Ontario grew by 30 per cent over the past 17 years, the number of low-wage jobs (defined as making within $4 of the minimum wage) have grown by 94 per cent. Increasingly, the wealthy are putting the burden of the capitalist crisis on the backs of the most downtrodden sector of workers.

Liberals in action: The privatization of Hydro One

The Ontario Liberals under Kathleen Wynne's leadership are finishing what the Tory government of Mike Harris started: the privatization of Hydro One. While the newly elected federal Liberal government remains in a honeymoon period under a facade of progressive politics, the Liberals in Ontario are revealing their real character as the sweethearts of Bay Street through this fire sale of the crown corporation.

Auditor General unveils scathing report on Wynne Liberals

auditor general lysykOn December 2, 2015, Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk released her annual report for the province of Ontario. The final 773-page document may very well be the most comprehensive indictment of the Wynne Liberals yet produced. From the government’s contempt of public input to their crony practices, Lysyk’s report is further confirmation that the “progressive” Liberal brand that Ontarians were promised in 2014 was just one more fanciful illusion.

Pan Am 2015: A Story of Greed

panamgamesIn a few weeks, the 2015 Pan Am Games will commence in Toronto, drawing in over 6,000 athletes from 41 countries. Thus far, the budget for the games sits at $2.57 billion dollars, a price tag nearly twice the original estimate of $1.4 billion.

Ontario Liberals Threaten Mass School Closures

toronto school boardIt didn’t take long for Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, a former school board trustee, to become the education sector’s worst nightmare. Almost 70 schools are under “review” for closure in Toronto alone, with potentially hundreds slated for closure across the province.

Transit Crisis in Toronto Reaching a Breaking Point

ttc streetcar no serviceThe sorry state of Toronto’s public transportation system dominated the city’s most recent municipal election campaign. Thus, it didn’t come as much of a surprise that one of the first policy announcements made by the new mayor of Toronto, John Tory, concerned the state of the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). However, Tory’s minor reforms don’t come close to addressing the roots of Toronto’s transit crisis or the daily hardships faced by workers and youth who depend upon the system.

John Tory is Toronto’s mayor: Bay Street sharpens its knives

There will be no “Ford more years” in Toronto as John Tory has been elected the city’s mayor, ending the four-year drug-fuelled party that was Rob Ford’s mayoralty. Doug Ford, Rob’s older brother, finished with a surprisingly-strong second place result while former NDP MP Olivia Chow came a distant third. With Tory’s victory, Bay Street now has their man at the head of Toronto City Council, who will likely implement the cuts and measures that Ford failed to as he became increasingly distracted by his drug use scandal.

 

Toronto mayoral election: Stop the Tory/Ford agenda!

As we enter the last month of Toronto’s never-ending mayoral race, it appears that Olivia Chow, the former NDP MP and widow to ex-NDP leader Jack Layton, has fallen to third place after entering the election as the favourite. Ahead of her are Bay Street darling John Tory and right-wing city councillor Doug Ford, the brother of the current disgraced mayor. Given the anger and disgust around Rob Ford and his policies, why has Chow’s campaign been unable to pick up the desire for change from Toronto youth and workers?

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