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Ontario’s Big City Mayors call for proof of vaccination, childcare plan

'The faster we can enact a proof of vaccination system, the faster we can protect more Ontarians from the effects of the Delta variant,' said Barrie Mayor Jeff Lehman, Chair of OBCM
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Ontario’s Big City Mayors (OBCM) are urging the province to establish a COVID-19 proof of vaccination system. Around the world, certified vaccination records are helping businesses and event spaces to safely open while encouraging more people to get vaccinated.

This will help reduce a fourth wave in Ontario as well. Organizations as diverse as the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, CFIB, the Ontario Science table, colleges and universities, are all calling for such a system.

“The faster we can enact a proof of vaccination system, the faster we can protect more Ontarians from the effects of the Delta variant,” said Jeff Lehman, Chair of OBCM and Mayor of Barrie. “This will support the safe reopening of our economy and protect our residents."

Childcare Plan

OBCM also passed a motion calling on the provincial government to reach an agreement on the $10 per day federal childcare plan to support the economy and reduce household expenses for Ontarians. Ontario’s strong fiscal management throughout the pandemic creates the opportunity to implement this economy strengthening social program.

The OBCM caucus urges the provincial government to join the seven other provinces who have reached agreements in providing quality affordable childcare to families. Childcare has been unaffordable and inaccessible to families across the province long before the pandemic began. The pandemic compounded this equity issue and resulted in more women exiting the workforce to care for their children.

Ensuring Ontarians have access to affordable childcare will remove a financial burden from families and help kickstart economic recovery.

Affordable Broadband Internet

The COVID-19 crisis has been brought to the forefront the need for all Ontarians to have reliable access to internet. OBCM supports continued efforts to provide proper broadband infrastructure, but also calls for affordable rates as too many Canadians are struggling with high fees for internet services.

“COVID-19 has underlined the fact that broadband internet for all our citizens is a basic necessity and essential utility, and access does not simply refer to broadband infrastructure availability, but also to its affordability”, stated Chatham-Kent mayor, Darrin Canniff. OBCM is looking to the Federal government to review the recent decision by the CRTC Commission and replace it with evidence based 2019 Rates Order.