Toronto – By taking a strong stand against privatization, the NDP is the only party to earn an “A” in the We Own It campaign’s pre-election Privatization Report Card.
“Andrea Horwath has made it clear that under her watch, no more public services will be privatized,” said OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas, who launched the We Own It campaign against privatization nearly two years ago.
“I’ve always said privatization is the ‘pay-more, get-less plan’ and I’m happy to see that at least one political party got the message.”
Since its launch in September 2016, the We Own It campaign has signed up more than 60,000 supporters across the province. It has hosted more than two dozen town hall meetings and made presentations to more than 1,300 union locals, community groups, and municipal councils.
“The goal of the campaign was to make sure privatization was an issue in this election, and I think it’s clear that we’ve succeeded,” Thomas said. “Ending the use of public-private partnerships is a major plank of the NDP, and they’ve got tremendous support across the province. I think We Own It can take some credit for both.”
Several weeks ago, the We Own It campaign asked its supporters to send a short, five-question privatization survey to all the major political parties.
The overwhelming theme of the NDP response: privatization has been unsuccessful and shouldn’t be used in the future.
Neither the Conservatives nor the Liberals responded.
“The silence from the Liberals and the Conservatives speaks volumes,” Thomas said, pointing out that both parties have long and ugly track records of selling off services and assets that have lowered quality and increased costs.
“All those privatizations have cost us billions upon billions of dollars,” Thomas said. “That’s billions that should have gone to our schools and hospitals and highways, but that have gone to the wealthy few instead.
“I urge OPSEU members and We Own It supporters to keep this Privatization Report Card in mind when they go to the polls tomorrow,” Thomas said.