Jamie West MPP, Sudbury

Government of Ontario

Letter to Minister of Colleges and Universities about COVID-19

Published on June 17, 2020

Sudbury MPP calls for provincial support to help local colleges and universities

SUDBURY — Sudbury NDP MPP, Jamie West, wrote to the Minister of Colleges and Universities calling for emergency financial support for Sudbury’s colleges and universities.

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed an extra financial strain on students and post-secondary institutions, who were already struggling to adjust to funding cuts made by the Ford government last year.

“Minister, without direct government help, Sudbury’s students and families will suffer,” wrote West. “I am concerned that if the public post-secondary institutions in my riding do not receive additional funding to get through this pandemic, they may need to make difficult cuts.”

In the most recent provincial budget, Ford cut $700 million from Training, Colleges and Universities, and threatened to withhold as much as 60 per cent of what’s left if schools didn’t meet criteria designed by Ford’s administration.

Post-secondary institutions in Sudbury were already struggling to adapt to funding cuts prior to this pandemic. Thorneloe University, a federated university at Laurentian university, recently cancelled its theatre arts and motion picture arts program due to a lack of funding.

West says that the current crisis threatens to further damage the financial situation of Sudbury’s colleges and universities.

“We simply cannot leave students, universities and colleges — and the communities they support — to fend for themselves,” wrote West. “Cuts to the universities and colleges in my riding will have a painful ripple effect on our community and our economic recovery. I am asking you to step in now and invest in our colleges and universities to prevent further negative impacts to students and our local economy.”

You can read the full letter here