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October 1, 2020

The Ford government has chosen a temporary fix over permanent, meaningful action by providing a time-limited pay bump to PSWs in long-term and congregate care settings, says the Ontario Federation of Labour.

“This pay increase should be permanent, and PSW wages should be made universal across the health care sector. Today’s announcement has only entrenched instability for workers in the care system more deeply,” said Ontario Federation of Labour President Patty Coates. “The important work of PSWs will be just as important for Ontario whenever this temporary pay increase is ended. The Ford Conservatives should be working toward the end of part-time precarious jobs for Ontarians. It’s time to create full-time jobs, with benefits, across the care sector – things this announcement fails to deliver.”

The “Pandemic pay” promised to essential workers by the Ford Conservatives early in the pandemic has been delayed or left unpaid for many workers during the COVID-19 crisis. Ontarians have called for increased staffing levels, and four hours of hands-on care per day for each long-term care resident.

“Ontarians know this is not sufficient. This announcement is Ford showboating, by providing wage increases while refusing to improve future conditions. It’s especially disappointing since it comes from a government that has been slow to provide the pandemic pay it committed to for essential workers at the start of the pandemic,” said Coates. “What Ontario needs is a government that respects collective agreements, ends precarious work, and ensures residents in long-term and congregate settings get the care they need from workers who have jobs they can count on.”

The Ford government has told Ontarians to prepare for a second wave of COVID-19.

The Ontario Federation of Labour represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. For information, visit www.OFL.ca and follow @OFLabour on Facebook and Twitter.

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For more information, please contact:

Meagan Perry 
Director of Communications 
Ontario Federation of Labour
mperry@ofl.ca l 416-894-3456 

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