Horwath woos Niagara voters with transit promises
NDP leader makes campaign stop in St. Catharines
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath rolled into St. Catharines on her big orange bus and revved up a crowd of wellwishers with the city’s train station in the background during a campaign stop Thursday.
It’s this station that will be humming with GO train traffic if Niagara’s transit boosters see their dream realized and daily service arrives — and Horwath matched her message with the backdrop.
“People in this region have been squeezed long enough,” she said.
“It’s time for a change that will look after the growing number of commuters here, connecting them with every opportunity, whether it’s a dream job or a quality education.”
She was flanked by NDP candidates from all four Niagara ridings: Wayne Gates in Niagara Falls, Jeff Burch in Niagara Centre, Jennie Stevens in St. Catharines and Curtis Fric in Niagara West.
Gates is the lone incumbent. Burch won the right to take the place of NDP stalwart Cindy Forster, who is retiring.
Horwath said her platform offers hope for people in Niagara who want better funded local transit and more frequent GO service between Niagara and Toronto.
The platform includes restoring the province’s 50 per cent share of net operating expenses for local transit
and investing in year-round GO rail services in Niagara.
“Everyday people should be able to count on transit in their communities, but that hasn’t been the case under the Liberals and Conservatives. Our change for the better will make it easier and more affordable for Ontarians to where they need to go. That means taking action to build the transit system that people deserve, no matter where they live in the province.”
Horwath added that instead of investing in better transit, Progressive Conservative Leader Doug Ford has vowed to cut at least $6 billion across the board and to privatize as much as he can.
As for the Liberals, she said, “We have had a government for 15 years that has many times promised improvements to GO rail services to these communities and yet, here we are, and the benefits that the service could provide in St. Catharines and Niagara have not been realized … What we have had is a lot of talk and no action.”
Andrea Horwath at an NDP campaign event in St. Catharines. To her right is Niagara Centre candidate Jeff Burch.