Last night Doug Ford and his PC Party swept through Ontario, picking up seven additional seats, with 83 seats. The NDP formed official Opposition, with 31 seats, while the Liberals failed to secure official party status for the second consecutive election with just eight seats. By defeating the Liberals and NDP, and both leaders stepping down, Doug Ford has cemented himself as a leader for workers and a champion of “Getting it Done.”
Key to Ford’s victory was endorsements from major construction trade unions. LiUNA was the first out of the gate with an endorsement for Ford at the start of the campaign. Seven other unions endorsed the PC Party thereafter, including the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and Ontario Pipe Trades Council (OPTC). The International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) and the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) supported the PCs official days before the election.
The OGCA will be reaching out to all the new and re-elected Members of Provincial Parliament to explain the impact of critical ICI infrastructure and our ongoing collaboration with the government.
Here is what else you need to know:
During this election, Ford and his former ministers travelled the province, repeatedly pledging support for skilled trades and apprenticeship programs, building infrastructure – highways, hospitals and 1.5 million new homes over the next decade. The re-elected Premier frequently noted that 1 in 5 people will be in the trades in the future, the need for micro-credentialing and the need to recognize foreign credentials.
This new coalition, heavily backed by workers and unions, has created a new political environment in Ontario. The OGCA, through its employer coalition OSTA, has met and agreed that they would develop a submission proposing that Skilled Trades Ontario make a priority of expanding a skilled trades inventory and establish anticipated growth and demand.
Getting It Done
The industry will be challenged to meet the government’s infrastructure agenda. Our industry is already experiencing an industry capacity problem and other issues related to inflation, supply chain, skilled trades and the management capacity of our design and construction firm. The OGCA will continue advocating for solutions to these pressing issues.