WATCH: Ontario Premier Doug Ford Statement After GM Announces Oshawa Plant Closure

Ford says Ontario government will support Oshawa autoworkers.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford has responded after General Motors announced they would be closing their Oshawa plant.

Video of some of Ford’s comments can be watched below:

A full statement released by Premier Doug Ford is included below:

“Today is a difficult day for the workers at the General Motors Oshawa Assembly Plant.

It is a difficult day for the thousands of workers at hundreds of Ontario auto part suppliers that depend on the GM Oshawa Assembly Plant for much of their business, as well as for workers and small business owners throughout Oshawa and the wider Durham region.

And it is also a difficult day for the spouses, the children and the families of these workers.

Today a lot of people are feeling shocked and saddened. I know some people are also feeling angry and betrayed. To everyone who has been impacted by this decision, please know this:

First, for those who work in the auto industry, I want you to know that today’s news has nothing to do with the quality of the work you do. I will put the highly trained, professional autoworkers in Oshawa, or anywhere else in Ontario, up against anybody else in the world. It is disappointing that GM failed to see and build upon this competitive advantage. While the company is entitled to make its own business decisions, I am confident that history will prove them wrong.

Second, I want the people of Oshawa and the Durham Region to know that our government will always stand with you.

Our government has already begun exploring measures to help impacted workers, businesses and communities cope with the aftermath of this decision. As a first step, I will be authorizing Employment Ontario to deploy its Rapid Re-Employment and Training Services program to provide impacted local workers with targeted local training and jobs services to help them regain employment as quickly as possible. We are looking at how best to align our programs to ensure maximum support is available for affected employees and their families. In speaking with GM, we have stressed the importance of supporting their employees through this difficult transition.

We will also be calling for all three levels of government to work together to help impacted families receive the support and relief they need, while also ensuring that impacted businesses are quickly able to adapt their business models to take advantage of new opportunities.

As a start, we are asking the federal government to immediately extend Employment Insurance (EI) eligibility to ensure impacted workers in the auto sector can fully access EI benefits when they need them most. There is a precedent for this kind of action that has been deployed in Alberta’s oil patch, and the people of Ontario are right to expect that the federal government will show a similar level of respect to the families that depend on Ontario’s auto sector.

We are also asking the federal government to work with their U.S. counterparts to remove all tariffs so that impacted auto parts suppliers can remain competitive after the Oshawa Assembly Plant closes its doors.

The final thing I want the people of Oshawa, Durham and the entire province to know is this: While today’s announcement is disappointing, it will not deter us from returning Ontario to its rightful place as one of the world’s premiere destinations for job creation and investment.

Our province has immense resource riches, and sits at the crossroads of continental and global trade. Most importantly, we have a hard-working and educated workforce that is envy of the world. Unfortunately, years of economic mismanagement at multiple levels of government have squandered many of these advantages and, today, thousands of innocent families are being hurt as a result.

The good news is that, working together, we can fix this. Our Government for the People will work day and night to make Ontario Open for Business once again.”


Actions to date: Rapid Re-Employment Training Services

  • The Ontario government has deployed Employment Ontario’s “Rapid Re-Employment Training Services” team, which will:
    • Coordinate the response within Durham Region and other impacted communities
    • Inform affected employees, employers and the community of the services available to them
    • Coordinate with the federal government to support access to EI and other programs.

Actions to date: Employment Insurance

  • As they have during times of economic hardship, Ontario has called on the federal government to:
    • Extend EI eligibility by five weeks to a maximum of 50 weeks in the impacted EI regions
    • Extend the duration of Work Sharing agreements by an additional 38 weeks, to a total of 76 weeks, and allow for immediate re-application for expired agreements
    • Re-introduce the Career Transition Assistance initiative to re-train workers
    • Develop a plan to increase EI durations for Long Tenured Workers in impacted EI regions
    • Increase the federal transfer to Ontario for skills training via the Labour Market Development Agreement and Workforce Development Agreement.

Actions to date: Tariffs

  • During recent trade deliberations, the U.S. government placed 25 per cent tariffs on Canadian steel and 10 per cent tariffs on Canadian aluminum products

  • The Canadian government countered with tariffs of its own on steel, aluminum, and various other American products

  • These tariffs from both sides increase the cost of doing of business for the critically important auto parts sector

  • Ontario asking the federal government work with U.S. counterparts to remove all tariffs.


Spencer Fernando

Photo – Twitter

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Ron Shaw

Put the blame on the man who caused it Justin The Traitor , weather it’s jobs in the auto sector or jobs in the Alberta oil patch , Canadians in general are taking a beating by the liberals , it’s time for these free spending elitists to get thrown out of office , without the option to ever return . Thanks to the lieing liberals Canadians will be paying Justins deficits off decades from now . Truly criminal ! Any no deficits don’t balance themselves out , again just truly ignorant .

S Willis

Two things caused this:

1) Trudeau’s idiotic posturing, SJW idiocy and ego blew the trade talks
2) GM wants on Trudeau’s lucrative handout train like Bombardier and the corporate media


Northern towns have been decimated for decades through closures and automation…

Need a new economic strategy as our governments have made survival illegal in so many different ways.

Peter Wilson

Now is the time to build Energy East and Trans Mountain pipelines – to assist our economy and provide jobs lost in the auto sector.

louis Joannette

Why not make the Oshawa plant a pilot maker of police cars, whit a;ll the gadget /speed / photo / and rely info speed dial ect in the north america in order to catch the offender. … either on gas or electric where it is apply. that would keep the plant open for a few years,

Moe. S.

Ford is absolutely right, there will be NO more private sector business bailouts in the prov. of Ontario. The General (GM) received a 3 BILLION bailout in 2006 from Federal & Prov. govt’s. Not one cent was repaid, apparently, Trudeau waived the debt, cleaned the ledger. Then turned around, gave $1.2 BILLION bailout to prop up the CBC. This is called “progressive economics” when the government gets itself involved in regulating private sector companies in a free-enterprise system and redistributing wealth by subsidizing (bailout) some companies and not others. Guaranteed money bailouts by the government for private sector companies do… Read more »