January 25th, 2021

NDP MPPs call on Ford for vaccination plan for Northern Ontario

SUDBURY - NDP MPPs France Gélinas (Nickel Belt) and Jamie West (Sudbury) wrote an open letter to Doug Ford calling on him to provide northerners with the government’s plan to roll out vaccines in the region, and to clarify his confusing stay-at-home order.

January 22, 2021

Premier Doug Ford
Premier’s Office, Room 281
Legislative Building Queen’s Park
Toronto, ON M7A 1A1
Via email: premier@ontario.ca

Dear Mr. Premier:

As you are aware, many northern communities lack the basic services that southern communities may take for granted. As well, in the North, our large geographical area can make health services more difficult to access. As a result, northerners often feel forgotten regarding government initiatives and rollout plans.

For example, it was recently reported that less than half of the residents in long-term care across Ontario have been vaccinated. Although we have some active deadly COVID-19 outbreaks in the North, there is currently no certainty around when our most vulnerable population will be vaccinated in the North.

Your recent comments in the media further highlight this concern.

Could you please clarify, when will the COVID-19 vaccines be available in Northern Ontario, how will they be distributed, and who will get them?

Also, many constituents have contacted us, stating that the stay-at-home orders were confusing. For example, we are being told of considerable non-essential travel in the North. Could you please clarify, what is and what is not allowed?

Although Northerners are feeling the hardship of the government orders, we are all continuing to do our part to fight COVID-19. However, it would be helpful to better understand the details of your plan for Northern Ontario.

Premier, please show us your plan to help protect the people of Northern Ontario.

We look forward to your prompt and positive response.

Thank you – Merci – Miigwetch,

(Original signed)

France Gélinas
MPP for Nickel Belt
La députée de Nickel Belt

(Original signed)

Jamie West
MPP for Sudbury
Le député de Sudbury

c.c. Nancy Wirtz, Mayor for the Municipality of Killarney
Brian Bigger, Mayor for the City of Greater Sudbury
Mark Signoretti, Councillor for the City of Greater Sudbury