Ontario midwife cuts

People are not happy about the latest Ontario budget cuts

Premier Doug Ford is certainly making good on his promise to "cut the fat," as they say, out of Ontario in the face of a whopping $14.5 billion budget deficit.

Too bad for all of that muscle, bone and cartilage in the way.

It's been just shy of six months since Ford's PC government took office, and in that time they've pulled funds from youth pharmacare, the basic income pilot, French-language education, French in generaleducation in general, Toronto in general, and more environmental protection programs than you can shake a fist at.

Meanwhile, they've launched their own "North Korea-style" news channel and say they're expanding Toronto's subway line to Pickering.

None of this has gone over particularly well with everybody in the province, nor is it even working. Moody's just downgraded the province of Ontario's credit rating, saying that the Ford government's moves to "reduce revenue levels" will put even more of a strain on our budget in the future.

This week, the government announced cuts to the Ontario College of Midwives and the Ontario Arts Council's Indigenous Culture Fund.

The Ontario College of Midwives is the regulatory body that oversees the province's nearly 1,000 registered midwives, who together deliver roughly 15 per cent of all babies in Ontario.

"The College has been advised that the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care will no longer provide operational grants to the College," reads a statement published by the organization earlier this week.

"We were also advised that this decision is retroactive to April 1, 2018," the statement continues. "This means that the funding we had anticipated for the current fiscal year [roughly $750,000] will not be received."

The government also just cut base funding to the Ontario Arts Council by $5 million, with an additional $2.25 worth of cuts to the council's Indigenous Culture Fund.

That fund, set up in response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action, was established in 2017 "to support First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities, culture and way of life."

"Indigenous youth need every opportunity to learn about and embrace their proud heritage and cultural traditions — opportunities robbed from many of their parents and grandparents through the residential school system," reads a description of the program on the province's own website.

"The Fund will support cultural activities in Ontario's Indigenous communities, including on-reserve and in urban centres, with the goals of revitalizing cultural practices, raising awareness of the vitality of Indigenous cultures in Ontario and promoting reconciliation."

Not anymore, I guess.

Lead photo by

A Great Capture


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