September 25, 2017

Mr. Ernie Hardeman: I rise today to speak about the strike at CAMI automotive plant. This plant employs thousands of people in my community, people who are worried about the future of the plant and their jobs. I share their concerns, and I support their efforts to keep those jobs in Ingersoll. In fact, last week I asked the Premier to change her government policies, which have already driven 1,300 jobs out of Oxford.

The number one issue I heard on the picket line this weekend, and the number one concern when I talk to CAMI employees, is keeping those jobs in Ingersoll. I’ve heard from employee after employee who is suffering because of this strike. They are worried about their future.

We make quality cars in Ingersoll because we have a hard-working and skilled workforce. Those workers shouldn’t have to worry about companies moving those jobs because of high hydro costs, taxes and red tape. While we as MPPs are not part of the contract negotiations, governments should be doing everything they can to keep those jobs in Ontario. I want to again ask the government to ensure that companies like CAMI can succeed so they can provide stable jobs for thousands of people. I want to once again encourage both sides to try and settle this as quickly as possible for the sake of those employees.

I want to say to the workers: I support your efforts. I understand how difficult this is for you, and I will continue to fight to keep those jobs in Oxford.