Local NDP candidate Celia Ross is irresponsibly misleading Sault residents again on the future of OLG, announced David Orazietti, Liberal candidate.
“Ontario Liberals, including the Premier and myself, have made it abundantly clear that OLG jobs and the head office are here to stay in Sault Ste. Marie and we are committed to keeping these positions in the community,” said Orazietti. “Our position has not changed, and it is unfortunate that Ross is intentionally and recklessly causing panic in our community about the status of these jobs. Sault families deserve better than these kinds of alarmist fear tactics.”
Ross’s comments that OLG jobs in Sault Ste. Marie are threatened by modernization are false. OLG modernization will bring the province’s gaming strategy into the 21st century and is designed to promote jobs and economic growth by attracting new investments. The plan will increase OLG revenues to the province, which are in turn invested in municipal services and important local projects.
In a recent media interview, NDP candidate Celia Ross acknowledged that, “We need to build out, just to continue with the lottery corporation, all the innovative opportunities that exist for private sector development…”
Over the last 16 months, Kathleen Wynne has visited Sault Ste. Marie four times and on each occasion has affirmed Liberal support for maintaining the OLG head office in the Sault. Wynne is the only provincial party leader who visited Sault Ste. Marie over the course of the election campaign to hear first hand from residents about the issues that matter to them.
NDP leader Andrea Horwath has not travelled to Sault Ste. Marie this election campaign and has no intention of doing so. This decision is not surprising, given the provincial NDP’s history of public sector job losses in the community.
The last time the Sault had NDP representation, they allowed the OLG ticket finishing plant to close, resulting in the loss of approximately 50 jobs. The NDP also failed to protect jobs at the former youth detention centre when they allowed the facility to shut down, resulting in further job losses. By contrast, when the Liberals formed government, the ticket finishing plant was reopened, creating 70 new jobs, and the government invested $8.5 million to build the Donald Doucet youth centre, restoring Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) jobs in the community.
“The NDP have shown their poor level of commitment to Northern Ontario and Sault Ste. Marie by failing to have their leader even show up in our community and requiring the local NDP candidate to drive to Sudbury for a meeting,” said Orazietti. “That’s not the kind of representation we need in our community and in this election a vote for the NDP is a vote for cuts promised by Tim Hudak’s PC’s.”