Eli Ridder | Analysis
The Progressive Conservative Party clinched a strong majority government following the Ontario election on Thursday, setting up Doug Ford to become the premier-designate, but what does thus mean for students?
The PC Party released a lengthy list of campaign promises before June 7 under the moniker “A plan for Ontario”, but failed to lay out a fully costed plan despite Mr. Ford claiming the PCs were the “only party that’s fiscally responsible”.
The plan included pledges to reduce hydro bills by 12 per cent to reducing income tax and reforming education with Ford saying he plans to run a deficit in the first year before balancing the budget, but details are scarce.
Ford’s plan promises to roll back the province’s updated sex-ed curriculum, “until we can install a new one that is age appropriate and based on real consultation with parents.”
The PCs also said cell phones in all primary and secondary school classrooms will be banned, there will be a “fix” of the province’s standardized-testing regime and universities will be required to “uphold free speech on campuses and in classrooms.”
When it comes to post-secondary education, it comes down more to a lack of platform items rather then any plans for those in university and college, a demographic that the New Democrats targeted with loan forgiveness.
The PC Party promises to spend $1.9 billion over the next decade on mental health and addiction support and ending hallway healthcare, but has voiced opposition to safe-injection sites in the province.
The PCs have also promised to bring a “buck a beer” program for $1 beer, bring alcohol to corner stores and cut gas prices by $0.10.
The planned $15 minimum wage the Ontario Liberal Party scheduled for Jan. 1 of next year will be scrapped, as Ford has made clear he plans to freeze the wage hike at its current $14, but would eliminate income tax for those at earning the minimum.
Ford previously said he would preserve rent control for current tenants across the province and boost affordable housing infrastructure in the Greater Toronto Area while protecting the Green Belt, although details have not been given.
More details to follow. Image of Doug Ford from previous files.