Every week during the election, we’ll post select info and articles featuring our work and the work of our clinic colleagues and community allies to help inform you about the issues at stake in the 2022 Provincial Election.
Monday, May 9: Dave Bush, ISAC’s Workers’ Rights Organizer, joined host Amanda Pfeffer On CBC’s Ontario Today call-in show to sum up the party offerings on minimum wage and to hear from callers regarding “What should happen to minimum wage?”. The segment can be listened to on CBC’s website by clicking here. Want to know more? You can check out our issue guide on Better Wages and Benefits for Workers here. Meanwhile, by Monday each of Ontario’s major political parties indicated that they will raise social assistance rates if elected – but by how much, and will it be enough? We put out a press release with our thoughts about it – read it here.
Tuesday, May 10: The CCPA released a thorough read on the province’s current moves to “modernize” social assistance. Journalist Chris Webb’s “Centralize, digitize, privatize: unpacking Ontario’s welfare reforms” quotes ISAC’s Senior Policy Analyst Devorah Kobluk on the increased use of digital tools as part of the modernization process: “If you are a relatively simple case, applying online may work for you. But if your case is more complex, then there’s a danger that people are excluded pre-emptively. Our concern is that these reforms fail to recognize the barriers that people face when they try and access these services.” Want to know what we’re saying about modernization in the context of the election? There’s an issue guide for that!
The first leaders debate also took place on May 10. The debate was held by the Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM) and focused on issues impacting people living in northern Ontario. Read more about the debate, or click through to find a recording of it.
Wednesday, May 11: Feed Ontario releases their 3 Big Ideas to put food banks out of business: End Legislated Poverty, Make Housing Affordable, and Guarantee Decent Work For All. Read more at their website here. Almost 60% of food bank users are on social assistance. Not only are the rates too low, but clawbacks also keep social assistance recipients in poverty. Check out our issue guide on Ending Poverty, which includes specific questions you can ask candidates.
Thursday, May 12: While the parties continue to put out general information about their platforms and their campaigns, local candidates are out and about, door-knocking, holding events and attending all-candidates meetings. We put together this handy tip sheet with 12 key points that will help you speak to candidates. These tips will help you become a pro! Other community legal clinics are also producing material throughout the election to help the public learn more about the issues. SALCO (South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario) tweeted some infographics: “Let’s see what the parties are saying about Social Assistance…”
Anything can happen during an election, but here are a few notable events coming up next week:
The next leaders debate will take place on Monday, May 16th, at 6:30 p.m. The live 90-minute debate will be broadcast on television and online on CBC, CHCH, Citytv, CPAC, CTV, Global, and TVO.
On Tuesday May 17 at 3pm, Devorah Kobluk (ISAC’s Senior Policy Analyst) & other great guests will speak at a Virtual Town Hall meeting on Decent Work and Income Security. The event is hosted by the Kensington-Chinatown Local Immigration Partnership Network. You can connect to the event through Zoom here: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/89706045073 – Zoom ID: 8970 604 5073. The event is taking place in English and simultaneous Interpretation will be provided in Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Korean, and Spanish.
On Thursday May 19, advanced voting begins! You can also vote right now by mail, or at the Returning Office in your riding.
Find out which riding you live in Elections Ontario’s website here – once you locate your riding through Elections Ontario’s website, the advanced voting locations are listed under the “Other Days and Ways to Vote” link on the right side of the page (example image using ISAC’s address below).
Check back next Friday for our next weekly roundup!