Premier Doug Ford Calls for a Strong, United Response to COVID-19
TORONTO — Premier Doug Ford issued the following statement following today's First Ministers' Call:
"On this afternoon's First Ministers' Call, I conveyed to the Prime Minister that his family are in our thoughts and the thoughts of all Canadians during this difficult time. I wished his wife, Sophie, a full recovery and thanked him for demonstrating the importance of taking the appropriate measures, including self-isolation, to prevent the further spread of COVID-19.
I also want to thank Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, for providing an update on the current global and domestic situation. Our priority is ensuring coordination between the provinces, territories and the federal government to safeguard the health and well-being of Canadians and protect jobs in the short term and our economy in the long term.
On the call, we discussed the federal government's $1 billion COVID-19 Response Fund, which includes $500 million in support for the provinces and territories. This funding will assist the provinces and territories with staying ahead of the situation in the short term. We applaud all federal parties for working together to ratify the Canada-U.S.-Mexico Agreement in the House of Commons and Senate to provide businesses with certainty and protect Ontario and Canadian workers, particularly in our auto and steel sectors.
I joined my fellow premiers to press the federal government on the need to provide reassurance to Canadian businesses and Canadian families during this time of economic uncertainty. While our government welcomes Minister Morneau's announcement that $10 billion in credit will be made available for businesses through Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Bank, and the Bank of Canada's decision to cut the overnight interest rate, we urge the federal government to work with the provinces to deliver the fiscal stimulus necessary to maintain stability and confidence in the Canadian economy. I further urged the Prime Minister to take action to address the ongoing supply chain issues we have been seeing across our province.
All levels of government must also work together to make sure workers who follow the Prime Minister's example and self-isolate to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 can do so knowing that the jobs that provide for themselves and their families will still be there for them when they are ready to return to work. I look forward to hearing more about the federal government's plans to provide direct support to the most vulnerable.
The next few months will be challenging, but I know the strength of Ontario, and Canada, is found in its people. Even as the First Ministers spoke this afternoon, communities across the country were rallying around our seniors and making sure they have what they need. Neighbours are staying connected and looking out for each other's well-being.
The resiliency of everyday people, supported by coordinated action from all levels of government, is the bedrock of Ontario and Canada. From coast to coast, we are showing the world that Canadians will always have one another's backs."