Jeff Burch MPP, Niagara Centre

Government of Ontario

Niagara’s NDP MPPs want Legislature called back immediately

Published on January 4, 2021

QUEEN’S PARK —Local NDP MPPs Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls), Jeff Burch (Niagara Centre) and Jennie Stevens (St. Catharines), are echoing Andrea Horwath’s demand Monday for Doug Ford to immediately call the Ontario Legislature back into session to deal with the COVID-19 crisis:

“Niagara has a crisis in long-term care happening as we speak. Despite having 10 months to prepare, the Ford government has left our homes without staff, PPE or supports to prevent these spreads. Now COVID-19 is spreading through our long-term care homes and threatening our senior’s lives. We cannot wait, we must immediately convene the legislature so we can send support and staff to Niagara to stop these outbreaks and save lives,” said Gates.

"Hundreds of frontline workers from local hospitals and nursing homes have contacted me, pleading for assistance from their provincial government. They are telling us they lack of PPE and have to put their own health and safety at risk to ensure the people of Niagara are well cared for. In response, this government has docked their pay when exposed to COVID-19, forcing them to go on unpaid leave. I've been speaking with these health care workers, and they need us to address these critical issues right away. There are things we can do now to help patients, workers and small businesses in our community. The legislature should be recalled so that we can get back to work immediately,” said Burch.

“The hope of a vaccine ending this nightmare quickly is getting dimmer. Ford has used barely more than 40,000 of 140,000 vaccine doses. My community were told vaccines were on the way, but they’ll still in refrigerators instead of being delivered to our residents and staff in long-term care who need them right now. Niagara families with loved ones in long-term care despair and parents are in the dark about the plan for schools that are due to re-open this month. We are facing a longer, deeper lockdown because Doug Ford keeps choosing to do too little too late. Now’s the time to stop the vacations and photo calls, and get back to work by using the billions in unspent COVID-19 funds to save lives in our hospitals and long-term care homes,” said Stevens.