Taras Natyshak MPP, Essex

Government of Ontario

Natyshak: Windsor-Essex left in Stage 2 because of Doug Ford’s actions

Published on July 29, 2020

ESSEX – NDP MPP Taras Natyshak says Windsor-Essex is being held back because Doug Ford didn’t test for COVID-19, didn’t contact trace, and didn’t provide isolation for agricultural workers who were infected. 

“The people of Windsor-Essex woke up this morning to the devastating news that once again the region is being left behind while the rest of the province enters Stage 3 of re-opening. It’s everyday families and small business owners who will suffer in a region that’s faced the highest levels of pandemic unemployment anywhere in Ontario,” said Natyshak.

“The responsibility lies entirely with Doug Ford. His decisions have led directly to this situation. He’s failed to provide the provincial leadership and resources necessary to deal with the public health emergency here in Windsor-Essex, and he’s refused to offer support for local businesses that they need to survive.”

Natyshak points out that after Ford handed the contract for testing to Switch Health, which hired Ford friend and former senior staffer Jeff Silverstein as their lobbyist, testing on farms in Windsor-Essex ground to a halt. On July 6, the government confirmed that testing for the virus had been done on 19 of 175 farms in the region. On July 21, the government confirmed to CBC Windsor that the number was stalled at 19. There’s been no word on progress since.

“Enough is enough. People here are fed up of Ford’s broken promises and empty gestures as he continues his vanity tour of Ontario. He needs to stop campaigning, and start fixing the crisis in Windsor-Essex before more lives are lost and more businesses are destroyed,” added Natyshak.

“Ford didn’t provide adequate resources to do mobile testing or contact tracing here. He’s failed to protect migrant workers who continue to be vulnerable to this virus due to their living and working conditions. That’s why we’re being left in Stage 2. It should never have come to this.”