Read my letter below from Sudbury.com about the provincial government's financial response to COVID-19.
Thank you for taking the advice of our public health officials and protecting your neighbours and loved ones by practicing social distancing, monitoring your own health, and supporting one another.
I want to thank the public health staff and health care workers across northern Ontario for their courage, their sacrifice and their hard work in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. As well, I want to recognize and thank the delivery drivers, the grocery store staff, the pharmacists, the transit drivers, the first responders, and everyone who goes to work so that others can do their part and stay home. We owe all of you an enormous debt of gratitude.
In order to reduce the spread of the virus, we have made the decision to close my community office at Barrydowne Road. My team is still working hard to respond to your requests by email and phone. We are sharing information with you where we have it, and finding out the answers when we do not. I am advocating for you every day to ensure that there are strong measures in place to support everyone in our community.
Earlier this week the provincial government presented a financial statement in response to this crisis. I am very concerned that the government’s plan falls short of what people need.
Many Sudburians are rightly concerned about finding themselves in a dire financial situation. With rent and mortgage payments to pay and food to put on the table, many people in our community can’t wait weeks for federal support to come in and most can’t make ends meet with their income cut in half. Small and medium-sized local businesses won’t benefit from the provincial government’s proposed tax credits if they have no revenue coming in. And, hospitals and health care workers are desperate for more resources to prepare for the unprecedented impact of this crisis on our health care system.
Because of this new reality, I am urging the government to substantially increase health care funding, and create a direct financial support package to put money in the pockets of people who desperately need it.
My NDP colleagues and I are ready to make this plan a reality. We are eager to work with the government to ensure people get the support they need to stay afloat during this crisis.
As always, please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns. My team and I are here to help. I will be posting updates with resources and information about provincial announcement on my website - JamieWestMPP.ca.
Thank you for all you’re doing- and continue to do. These are difficult times, but Sudbury is rising to the challenge. Together, we’ll get through this.
See the original version in Sudbury.com here.