September 3, 2020, Premier Doug Ford announced the first-ever Ontario-Quebec summit on Economic Recovery. Premier François Legault of Quebec will lead a delegation of ministers to Mississauga on September 8 and 9 to discuss lessons learned from the pandemic, US protectionism, and ways to get Canada’s two largest economies back on track. The Summit will take place ahead of the up-coming Council of First Ministers’ Meeting in Quebec City on September 21.
Premier Ford was joined by the Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development Monte McNaughton, Jane McKenna, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development, and members of the Provincial Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario to also announce $37 million in provincial funding to help train more than 15,000 skilled workers. Funding will support 86 projects and provide training in high-demand skills like IT, advanced manufacturing, truck driving, construction, and horticulture. Premier Ford added that today’s announcement is meant to promote more women in trade.
Questions from Media – Response to COVID-19
In response to questions about Ontario teachers potentially refusing to work over public health concerns, Premier Ford said that he will not use his legislative power to force teachers back to work, adding that his government is “throwing everything it has” at the safe re-opening of the school year and has full confidence in teachers and school boards.
The Premier told the media that regardless of the pandemic, Ontario needs more nurses and Personal Support Workers (PSW). He then confirmed that the government is moving forward with the Minister of Health and Treasury Board to boost the salaries of PSWs.
Hamilton LRT Line
When asked about a public-private partnership to revive the cancelled Hamilton LRT line, Premier Ford confirmed that the project is shovel ready but requires federal support before it can proceed. He also added that he will listen to recommendations from Hamilton’s Transit Task Force when it comes to the LRT project.