Chow, Wynne, in favour of community benefit agreements

Photo: flickr/Olivia Chow

Toronto mayoral candidate Olivia Chow tweeted that she and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne are in agreement on transit, after the Premier's speech at the Good Jobs Summit.

On Oct 4, Wynne addressed the delegates at the summit, a combination conference and convention organized by private sector union Unifor in the hopes of jumpstarting a cross-sectorial discussion about how to ensure there are better jobs available for Canadians in the future.

Wynne spoke at length about the importance of infrastructure projects, like the Eglinton Crosstown LRT line in Toronto, in job creation, noting that along the 19km line are five priority neighbourhoods that have historically low-income and disadvantaged residents.

“These groups needed to be part of every good jobs conversation, and certainly need to going forward,” Wynne said.

Built into the Eglinton Crosstown project is a community benefit agreement. These agreements call for the companies and organizations behind large infrastructure projects to work with the local community to develop job opportunities and training, according to a Metrolinx report.

Wynne specifically pointed to the Eglinton Crosstown agreement as one of the ways they have been able to find good jobs for local residents.

Community benefit agreements are also a part of Chow’s recently released platform as part of her strategy for addressing youth unemployment.

Almost immediately after Wynne’s speech, Chow tweeted that the premier agrees with her job creation strategy:" I say yes. Premier Wynne says yes. John Tory calls creating jobs for young people “NDP bureaucracy”. #TOpoli

In a blog posted at about the same time, Chow was critical of John Tory, who had previously said that city staff should not be setting up “NDP-style bureaucracies.

According to a CBC report, Tory favours encouraging local businesses to employ young people. He has not yet released his full campaign platform.

Wynne did not mention Chow or the Toronto mayoralty race in her speech.


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