From the Provincial Office of OSSTF
NEW BILLS INTRODUCED
BILL 171, PHONES DOWN, HEADS UP ACT
Liberal MPP Yvan Baker’s (Etobicoke Centre) bill states that “no pedestrian shall cross a roadway while holding and using a wireless communication device, electronic entertainment device or other prescribed device.”
BILL 172, FAIRNESS IN MINIMUM WAGE ACT
NDP MPP Cindy Forster’s (Welland) bill seeks to ensure that no workers are paid “sub-minimum” wages under the Liberals’ plan to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour. According to Forster, this bill would protect workers such as homeworkers and fishing and hunting guides. The bill proceeded to 2nd Reading but was defeated by the combined votes of the Liberals and PCs.
BILL 173, REDUCING WASTE ONE POD AT A TIME ACT
PC MPP Norm Miller’s (Parry Sound—Muskoka) bill would prohibit the sale of single-use beverage (usually for coffee) pods unless they are fully compostable. Miller said that 1.5 million pods are annually sent to Ontario landfills.
BILL 174, CANNABIS, SMOKE-FREE ONTARIO AND ROAD SAFETY STATUTE LAW AMENDMENT ACT
Attorney General Yasir Naqvi’s (Ottawa Centre) bill would create an Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation Act which will be responsible for running Ontario’s new 40 retail stores for the sale of marijuana as of January 1, 2018. The bill would also amend the Highway Traffic Act regarding driving under the influence of drugs. Additionally, the bill includes a provision for authorizing the use of camera systems in school buses. The Liberals will have to fast-track this bill in the Legislature, if they want it to be in place by the first day of 2018.
BILL 175, SAFER ONTARIO ACT
The Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, Marie-France Lalonde (Ottawa—Orléans) introduced legislation that would make significant changes to the oversight of policing in Ontario. A new position of Inspector General will be created and be responsible for the oversight of the Office of the Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD), the Ontario Civilian Police Commission (OCPC) and the renamed Ontario Special Investigations Unit. Lalonde also announced changes to the police disciplinary process that includes setting new rules for suspension without pay for police officers accused of serious criminal wrongdoing.
BILLS REFERRED TO COMMITTEE
BILL 33, TIME TO CARE ACT (LONG-TERM CARE HOMES AMENDMENT, MINIMUM STANDARD OF DAILY CARE)
NDP MPP France Gelinas’s (Nickel Belt) bill passed 2nd Reading with all-party support and was referred to the Standing Committee on General Government. Gelinas’ bill would require a long-term care home to provide its residents with at least four hours a day of nursing and personal support services, averaged across the residents.
BILL 145, WSIB COVERAGE FOR WORKERS IN RESIDENTIAL CARE FACILITIES AND GROUP HOMES ACT
Liberal MPP John Fraser’s (Ottawa South) bill passed by 2nd Reading by voice vote and was referred to the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills. Fraser’s bill would bring employees of residential care facilities and group homes under Workers’ Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) coverage.
BILL 166, STRENGTHENING PROTECTION FOR ONTARIO CONSUMERS ACT
The Minister of Government and Consumer Services Tracy MacCharles (Pickering—Scarborough East) introduced legislation that would ban computer bots that excessively mark-up event tickets. The bill also proposes measures to strengthen conflict-of-interest rules for real estate agents. The bill passed 2nd Reading and was referred to the Standing Committee on Social Policy.
BILL 154, CUTTING UNNECESSARY RED TAPE ACT
Economic Development and Growth Minister Brad Duguid’s (Scarborough Centre) bill passed 3rd Reading by voice vote. The bill aims to cut government red tape. Duguid says that his legislation will make it easier for businesses to grow and create more jobs.
GRADE 10 CAREERS COURSE REVAMPED
Education Minister Mitzie Hunter (Scarborough—Guildwood) announced that the Grade 10 Careers course would include financial and digital literacy in a revamped curriculum. Hunter also revealed that an experiential co-ordinator would be hired in every school board to expand learning opportunities with community partners, for all grades, courses and programs—from kindergarten to adult learners.
The Legislature will be recessed the week of November 6. It will resume on Tuesday November 14.