We conclude our series of election questionnaires from the candidates for this Thursday’s Provincial Election by hearing from NDP incumbent Guy Bourgouin.
1 — How would you improve highways in the north, especially during the winter months?
-Bring highway 11 & 17 up to class 1 same as 400 series and QEW.
-Eliminate privatization and bring it back into public jurisdiction.
– Move ahead with vital road construction projects like the four-laning of Highway 69 and Highway 11/17, and the Thunder Bay Expressway.
2 — Do you think Northlander passenger rail service should be restored before 2025, even on a gradual basis, ramping up to full service?
-Yes. The NDP has a plan and is committed to: Fully restoring the Northlander as part of our Northern Rail Strategy, and connecting it with the Polar Express in Cochrane.
-Working with municipal and industry partners to develop an Intercommunity Transportation Strategy to better connect communities
across Ontario (after the end of Greyhound service in the North).
3 — Gas prices are high everywhere, but the north seems to get hit the most, how would you go about changing that?
The NDP is the only party that will be regulating gas prices to protect consumers. We will direct the Ontario Energy Board to regulate gas prices.
4 — Most communities in our region are chronically underserviced by doctors. How would you improve this?
-We’ll immediately hire and recruit 300 doctors in Northern Ontario including 100 specialists and 40 mental health practitioners.
-We will work with the OMA and Northern communities to enhance incentives and supports for physicians and health care workers to practice in Northern Ontario and other communities that are chronically underserviced.
-We will also work with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario to expedite the process for international medical graduates to obtain their license to work in Northern Ontario.
-Train more doctors and health professionals to work in the North by expanding the number of seats and training opportunities at NOSM University
-Fund travelling doctors to bring a resident with them when they go to a Northern Ontario community to practice, increasing student aid and
introducing a special scholarship program for students from Northern Ontario who want to become health care practitioners.
-Expand primary health services with community-led Family Health Teams and other integrated health teams and following guidance of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation Health Transformation Plan.
-Expand access to midwifery care including in Francophone, rural and Indigenous communities and return a midwifery program to Sudbury to
support Indigenous and Francophone midwives and families.
5 — What will your party do to address rising housing costs in terms of building, ownership and rental?
– Building 6,000 units of new affordable housing in Northern Ontario and 3,600 units of supportive housing. For more on our housing plan see the
NDP Homes You Can Afford Plan.
– We’ll fix the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) and restore the right to in-person hearings.
– Pay what the last tenant paid.
-We’ll fix the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) and restore the right to in-person hearings. We’ll end Doug Ford’s unfair “evictions blitz,” and make sure tenants and landlords can get prompt and fair hearings before the board.
-We will support first time buyers with a 10% of the house value in which owners will reimburse at the time they sell the house or sooner if they can.