During the week of May 25th, MPP for Sudbury, Jamie West, held a series of virtual consultations with community organizations, labour groups and business owners from Sudbury this week to hear their first-hand accounts of how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted their organizations.
“For months, the Ontario NDP has been calling on the Ford government to provide direct financial assistance to struggling businesses, non-profits and charities,” said West. “Federal and provincial government programs fell short of what organizations in our community needed to help cover their rent and bills during this difficult time.”
West said Sudburians raised concerns about the provincial government’s vague re-opening guidelines, and they asked for straightforward workplace health and safety protocols to help them keep workers and customers safe.
Participants also requested help from the provincial government to support the community adapt to the “new normal” over the long term, such as funding to assist with the development of online platforms and services, the safe re-opening of childcare, and access to mental health supports.
“Thank you to all who participated in these consultations,” said West. “As restrictions are lifted in accordance with the expert advice of public health officials, it is critical that the ideas and concerns of Sudbury’s community are included in the Ford government’s framework for reopening the economy. This must include rent support and direct financial support to small and medium sized businesses impacted by the pandemic, and assistance for workplaces concerned about the ongoing safety of their workers.”