Episode 12: Ontario Election Wrap Up

Listen to episode 12 here.

In their last episode of the season, Tara, Kate, and six other young women sit down for a glass of sangria, a run down of the highlights from the party platforms, and a discussion on their respective decisions in the Ontario election.

If you are in Ontario and have yet to vote, you can find your polling station at https://www.elections.on.ca/

Resources:

Kathleen Wynne’s concession

Doug Ford’s platform

On declining your ballot 

Episode 11: Queer Issues (DYQWIQ Crossover)

Listen to episode 11 here.

Kate and Tara sit down with the hosts of ‘Do You Queer What I Queer?,’ a Toronto-based podcast which serves as a platform for diverse voices of politics and human interest in the LGBTQ community to educate, entertain, and expand world-views of listeners. In this crossover episode, Tara, Kate, Elliott, and Thom talk about queer issues in Ontario and what the three Ontario parties have to offer the community and its allies in the upcoming provincial election.

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs:

  • stated will roll back inclusive sex ed curriculum
  • historic connections with anti-queer advocates

Liberals:

  • maintain 2015 sex ed curriculum
  • symbolism of Kathleen Wynne as party leader and Premier of Ontario
  • pledged to establish a new Local Service Priority Fund to strengthen mental health supports for LGBTQ+ individuals
  • pledged an additional $2.1 billion more over the next four years to increase the level of care and access for mental health and addictions services with a special focus on queer individuals
  • committed to piloting Canada’s first dedicated LGBTQI2S Community Legal Clinic

NDP:

  • maintain 2015 sex ed curriculum
  • fully cover the cost of transition medicine for trans individuals
  • improve access to primary and secondary procedures

Episode 10: Poverty & Homelessness

Listen to episode 10 here. 

 

On this special 10th episode, Tara and Kate chat with friend of the show Kiki Cekota about the news from Ontario politics this week, as well as the three party election platforms and how they rank in terms of the way they plan to address poverty and homelessness in this province. Tara and Kate also sit down with Jocelyn Helland, Executive Director at Eva’s Initiatives for Homeless Youth in Toronto to understand the challenges facing some of our most vulnerable communities and what government can and should do help.

Resources:

407 data breach story: www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto…legations-1.4671063

LIberals promise to end auto-insurance discrimination: www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto…stal-code-1.4668052

Patrick Brown book: www.cbc.ca/news/politics/brown…c-ontario-1.4665677

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs:

  • Ford stated repeatedly he will cut provincial spending overall by $6 billion
  • will cap the minimum wage at $14/hour and eliminate income tax on minimum wage earners
  • will cover up to $6,750 in childcare costs per child under the age of 15

Liberals:

  • increased the minimum wage to $14/hour in January 2018, rising to $15/hour January 2019
  • pledged to provide more community-based mental health services to more than 12,000 young people in 2018–19, growing to approximately 46,000 over four years
  • committed to adding 525 more supportive housing units for people with complex mental health and addictions needs
  • pledged $17.1 billion over 10 years for mental health spending
  • offered free childcare for children over the age of two and implemented full-day kindergarten

NDP:

  • committed to follow the Liberal minimum wage plan, but increase parameters to all workers (including students and servers)
  • pledged to invest in 30,000 new supportive housing units over the next 10 years, building at least 3,000 every year
  • pledged to hire 2,200 new mental health care workers (including counsellors, social workers, case managers, system navigators and assertive community treatment staff)
  • pledged free childcare for households earning under $40,000 and averaging $12/day for households earning more

 

 

Episode 9: Public Transit

Listen to episode 9 here.

Tara and Kate chat about why public transit is a social justice and a climate justice issue and what the three provincial parties are offering in terms of investment in transit. Tara and Kate also talk with people waiting for public transit at Kipling station in Toronto about what’s lacking in public transit in Toronto.

Watch the livestream of the three debates from this week:

Laidlaw Youth Town Hall: twitter.com/laidlawfdn/status/993545797848346625

CityTV Debate:
toronto.citynews.ca/cityvote-the-debate/

Northern Debate:
globalnews.ca/news/4202000/north…-ontario-election/

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs:

  • endorses all-day GO transit service to the Niagara region
  • pledged $5 billion for Toronto subway in addition to the billions already committed for public transit by the federal and provincial Liberal governments
  • stated that PCs would upload responsibility to the province for the Toronto Transit Commission’s subway infrastructure, but the city would still be responsible for day-to-day operations, as well as bus and streetcar lines, and would keep the revenue
  • supportive of  Phase Two of LiteRail in Ottawa
  • in the past, Ford voted to reduce the TTC’s funding by 10% which led to higher wait times and poorer user experiences

Liberals:

  • pledged $9 billion for TO subways
    • Downtown Relief Line, the Yonge North subway extension and the Waterfront light rail transit service.
    • SmartTrack has already passed a few key votes at Toronto city council and is expected to be completed by 2025. The project would see increased service on the GO line, with trains running every 5.5 to 10 minutes during peak periods.
  • stated that fares within the city will match that of the TTC, at $3 for PRESTO users
    • The cost for GO Transit trips will also be reduced to the same price for PRESTO card users who are travelling under 10 kilometres anywhere on the GO network, starting in 2019
  • committed $79 billion for public transit province-wide over 10 years
  • introduced the Ontario Seniors’ Public Transit Tax Credit, giving seniors a 15 per cent  ax credit on their public transit expenses

NDP:

  • pledged to extend GO transit service to Niagara
  • committed to introducing two-way all-day service between Kitchener/Waterloo and Toronto
  • dedicated $800 million annually for transit with $330 million for the Toronto region
  • committed to restoring service on the Ontario Northlander to bring service to northern communities/inter-regionally (Toronto to Cochrane)
  • stated will cover 50% of municipal transit operating costs
  • pledged to build Hamilton’s LRT immediately
  • pledged to build Toronto’s Downtown Relief Line immediately

Episode 8: Education

Listen to episode 8 here.

 

Kate interviews two teachers to get a sense of the strengths and limitations of our education system and what the three provincial parties are offering in terms of education policy in the upcoming election.

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs:

  • promised to reshape 2015 sex ed reforms with greater parental input
  • pledged reshape Ontario’s math curriculum
  • stated their government would tie university funding to free speech

Liberals:

  • OSAP reforms have given 225,000 students free post-secondary tuition in 2018
  • pledged $16 billion in capital grants over 10 years to fund schools
  • promised $250 million in new funding over three years to eliminate waitlists for special education
  • committed to hire 450 new guidance counsellors for grade 7 and 8 students
  • dedicated $170 million over three years in Ontario Apprenticeship Strategy

NDPs:

  • committed to capping Kindergarten class sizes at 26 students
  • pledged to invest $16 billion to repair existing schools
  • pledged to ensure schools teach inclusive history
  • promised a moratorium on school closures
  • promised to end EQAO testing
  • pledged to turn post-secondary OSAP loans into non-repayable grants
  • pledged to foster 27,000 paid work-integrated co-ops and internship placements
  • committed creating a Franco-Ontarian University

Episode 7: Feminist Policy in Ontario

Listen to episode 7 here.

Tara speaks with Toronto creative Franceta Johnson about some of what the three parties have to offer in terms of policy that helps to combat the inequality between men and women in Ontario.

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs:

  • promised they will cover up to $6,750 in childcare costs per child under the age of 15 (the average cost of childcare in Toronto is $3000/month)
  • stated would ensure individuals under the age of 18 obtain parental permission before receiving an abortion
  • promised to roll back health and sex ed curriculum reforms with greater parental input

Liberals:

  • pledged free childcare for children over the age of two and full day kindergarten
  • reformed Ontario’s sex ed curriculum in 2015 and plan on maintaining it
  • maintains a pro-choice position for all

NDP:

  • promised to maintain Liberal’s sex ed curriculum
  • pledged free childcare for all households who earn under $40,000 annually and childcare for $12/day for households earning over $40,000
  • maintains a pro-choice position for all

Episode 6: The NDP Platform

Listen to episode 6 here.

Kate and Tara discuss the highlights of the Ontario NDP platform, including the large social spending commitments like universal dental care and pharmacare and revenue-creating measures like tax hikes for the wealthiest Ontarians and a yearly tax on foreign home owners in the GTA.

Resources:

NDP Platform PDF – www.ontariondp.ca/platform

Highlights:

  • universal dental care
  • universal pharmacare
  • free childcare for households earning under $40,000 annually and an average of $12/day for households earning over $40,000
  • free transition drugs for trans individuals
  • $16 billion in school repairs
  • index the minimum wage to inflation and extend parameters to include all workers, including students and servers
  • turn OSAP loans into non-repayable grants
  • buy back Hydro One and reduce Hydro bills by 30% immediately
  • establish a Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions
    • cut children’s mental health waits to a 30-day max with a $590 million investment
    • hire 400 more mental health care workers to provide mental health supports in every high school
  • raise taxes by 1% on $220,000 incomes
  • raise taxes by 2% on over $300,000 incomes
  • corporate tax rate raised from 11.5% to 13%
  • GTA: annual property tax on foreign owners at 0.5% per year in 2018 and 2% in 2019
  • increase taxes on cars more than 90,000

Episode 5: Healthcare

Listen to episode 5 here.

Kate and Tara chat with two nurses who help explain the benefits & limitations of our healthcare system and what they will be looking for in election platforms in June.

Resources:

News from this week – “Teacher’s Unions File Complaint Against the Ontario Government” (www.thestar.com/news/queenspark/2…rd-complaint.html) and “March Home Sales Plunge” (business.financialpost.com/real-estate…ast-march-2)

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs:

  • Doug Ford publicly stated that no nurses would lose their jobs under his government
  • committed to creating 15,000 new hospital beds within five years, and 30,000 over the next 10 years to end hallway medecine
  • committed $1.9 billion over ten years for mental health

Liberals:

  • free pharmacare and dental care for individuals under the age of 25 and over the age of 65
  • increasing spending by $5 billion over three years
  • will cover pharmacare (covers a list of 4,400 drugs) and dental care for individuals in between the ages of 25 and 65 who are not covered through their work
  • $822 million in hospital funding
  • $17.1 billion for mental health care over four years

NDP:

  • immediately increase hospital funding by 5.3% ($30 million) and introduce 2,000 new hospital beds
  • create 35 new Community Health Centres by 2025
  • fully cover the costs of transition drugs for trans individuals
  • universal pharmacare (covers a list of 125 essential drugs) and dental care

 

Episode 4: Climate Change (but not doom & gloom)

Listen to episode 4 here.

 

Kate and Tara discuss climate change and what the three provincial parties have committed to doing to fight it. Kate interviews John Robinson, a Professor at the Munk School of Global Affairs and the School of the Environment at the University of Toronto; an Honorary Professor with the Institute for Resources, Environment & Sustainability at The University of British Columbia; and an Adjunct Professor with the Copenhagen Business School. He explains carbon pricing and his optimistic view of how the world can combat the effects of climate change.

PARTY PLATFORM BREAKDOWN

PCs

  • Doug Ford is firmly against any kind of carbon tax, though he has stated that he does believe in man-made climate change
  • he is opposed to the Liberal’s current cap and trade system, as he worries it restricts businesses in Ontario and encourages them to move to other markets

Libs

  • instituted a cap and trade carbon pricing system in September 2017
  • has raised $2.4 billion in proceeds as of April 2018 and was praised internationally

NDP

  • endorse the Liberal cap and trade system

Episode 3: The Liberal Budget

Listen to episode 3 here.

 

Tara and Kate sit down with 6 other young people to discuss the highlights of the provincial budget released in March 2018.

Resources:

Budget website: http://budget.ontario.ca/2018/index.html

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • free pharmacare and dental care for individuals under the age of 25 and over the age of 65, with up to 80% of expenses refundable for those between 25 and 65 without private coverage
  • free childcare for children over the age of two
  • $19 billion in hospital spending over 10 years
  • $547 million dedicated to repairs to affordable and social housing projects over five years
  • $822-million increase in hospital funding in 2018-2019 to reduce wait times
  • committed an additional $2.1-billion over four years to mental health and addictions funding
  • $16 billion in capital grants to build new schools or improve existing ones
  • increase  OSAP awards for Indigenous students and low-income students students
  • increase minimum wage to $15/hour in January 2019