Premier Wynne Targets Unions, Minimum Wage Issues at Thornhill Rally

Addressing a rally of her supporters in Thornhill on Sunday night, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne alleged that Tim Hudak’s Progressive Conservatives want to “undermine” unions and criticized Andrea Horwath’s NDP for being silent on raising the minimum wage. Byelections are set to commence in Thornhill and Niagara Falls on Thursday, i.e. only few days after results of Forum Research polls showed that Liberals are behind in both.

Wynne grilled Mr. Hudak on his promise to weaken unions by scrapping the Rand Formula that requires workers in closed shops to pay union dues, asserting that such steps would cause more trouble to the province than any benefit. Whereas, Mr. Hudak claim that Ontario must modernize its labour laws to attract more jobs. She told the audience gathered at a banquet hall on Highway 7 that “the Conservatives, what they want to do is undermine labour and create an environment where high-quality jobs leave the province in a drive to the bottom.” She added that “I believe in constructive politics. . . . They want to cut and see what happens. We’re not going to go there.”

Wynne openly targeted Horwath, even though it is her party that has enabled the minority Liberals to survive since the 2011 election in exchange for demand for policies like a 15 per cent cut in auto insurance and the creation of a legislative budget watchdog. She mentioned that “I was shocked, quite frankly, when the NDP didn’t weigh in on the minimum wage.”

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