Move to close the Ontario Science Centre immediately, is result of Conservative Government negligence | The Ontario Federation of Labour

Move to close the Ontario Science Centre immediately, is result of Conservative Government negligence

The Ontario Federation of Labour issued this media release on GlobeNewswire on Friday, June 21, 2024.

OFL: Move to close the Ontario Science Centre immediately, is result of Conservative Government negligence and a failure to properly fund the services Ontarians rely on.

TORONTO, June 21, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – The Ontario Science Centre, a globally renowned institution and one of the best science museums according to Reader’s Digest, has now been shut down as of 2:00 PM today. This move is yet another example of Premier Doug Ford’s misguided priorities. By allowing the building to fall into disrepair, the future of over 300 jobs are now in limbo, including contracted food service and cleaning workers who are primarily racialized women. The people of Ontario will also have to go without access to this cherished educational public institution.

Despite the Centre’s financial challenges, experts agree that renovating the current building is both more environmentally and socially responsible and considerably cheaper than constructing a new, smaller facility at Ontario Place. The Premier’s claim that the relocation will increase attendance remains unsupported by any public documentation.

The Ontario Science Centre has played a pivotal role in education and community engagement. Over 170,000 children visit annually through school field trips, receiving hands-on science education that sparks curiosity and fosters learning. Additionally, 2,000 children are scheduled to attend day camps in the next two weeks.

“As a parent, I know how far in advance parents plan children’s summer programs and how competitive it is to get into them,” said Laura Walton, President of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL). “The Science Centre has been an invaluable resource for our children, offering unique educational experiences that cannot be found elsewhere.”

For over 50 years, the Science Centre has created world-renowned exhibits, experiences, and traveling shows, thanks to its unique team of workers, including science researchers, writers, designers, wood and metal workers, electricians, and digital media experts in its onsite workshops.

“The decision to close this esteemed institution reflects a lack of vision and commitment to children’s education,” Walton continued. “While Ford is preoccupied with maximizing profit by pushing liquor and beer sales in corner stores, his priorities are evidently misaligned with the needs of working people and the educational development of Ontario’s youth.”

The Ford government’s decision is part of a troubling pattern of neglect and short-sightedness.

“Ford’s cuts to healthcare have left hospitals struggling and patients waiting,” said Walton. “Our children’s education should be a priority, but Ford’s actions say otherwise. Additionally, Ford’s government is failing to protect our environment for future generations.”

Furthermore, as 300 workers await their fate and parents of 2,000 children are scrambling to find summer programs for their children, Premier Ford is absent, vacationing, instead of addressing these concerns.

The Ontario Science Centre is more than just a museum; it is a vital educational resource and a beloved cultural landmark. Closing it is a disservice to the millions who have benefited from its programs and to the future generations who will miss out on its unique educational experiences.

The Ontario Federation of Labour represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. It is the largest provincial labour federation in Canada. Visit and follow @OFLabour on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.

For more information, please contact: 

Jenny Sellathurai
Interim Director of Communications
Ontario Federation of Labour  |  416-894-3456