QUEEN'S PARK – While Windsor and Essex County residents are reeling from the bad news that the region is the last to remain in Stage 1 of economic reopening, the Financial Accountability Officer for Ontario has released a new report showing that Windsor is the hardest hit city by pandemic-related job losses.
Windsor-Essex has had a 19 per cent drop in employment. Meanwhile, Doug Ford is forcing the region to stay almost entirely closed because he has failed to take any real action to prevent or address outbreaks among migrant workers in the county. Windsor West MPP Lisa Gretzky demanded answers from the Premier in Question Period on Tuesday.
“Our community cannot afford to wait for Doug Ford to get his act together,” said Gretzky. “Our local economy is suffering more than anywhere else in the province. Our small businesses, already struggling without the government support they need, are at the end of their rope. Today’s report shows the depth of the damage Ford has done by refusing to address the outbreaks on farms.
“Doug Ford caused this mess, and he’s the reason we’re still in it.”
The report shows that Windsor’s manufacturing sector took the biggest hit, with approximately 6,600 job losses between February to May. Among other major sectors like hospitality, tourism and retail, the region overall lost approximately 31,900 jobs. Yesterday, the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce urged the government for immediate financial support in all sectors, without which they say “catastrophically, several businesses will permanently close or will face permanent closure, which in turn will have lasting negative economic impacts to our region.”
“Doug Ford could fix this today, and get Windsor and Essex open, by releasing the metrics he used to make this decision, and by taking the action necessary to contain the current infections and prevent further spread,” said Gretzky.