daylight saving time ontario

Ontario politician wants permanent Daylight Saving Time but some aren't on board

It's an election year, which means all sorts of promises from politicians looking to earn votes. And on a week where Ontario is collectively adjusting to the switch to Daylight Saving Time (DST), a provincial party leader has just made a bold promise to end the annoying biannual clock changes for good.

On Wednesday, Ontario Liberal Party leader Steven Del Duca pledged to make DST permanent if elected, coordinating with Quebec and New York to fix clocks across the neighbouring regions.

The U.S. Senate voted unanimously in favour of a bill to make DST permanent on Wednesday morning. The hilariously named Sunshine Protection Act now needs approval from the U.S. House of Representatives and President before becoming law.

This has set the stage for Canadian provinces to follow suit, and the wheels are already in motion in several provinces, including Ontario. A private members bill dubbed "The Time Amendment Act" was passed unanimously at the Ontario legislature in Nov. 2020.

Though it has already received royal assent, the bill is contingent on neighbours New York and Quebec making DST permanent. The new bill passing in the states would check off the New York box, meaning all it would take is some coordination between Canada's two most populous provinces to end DST in Ontario and Quebec.

Del Duca's pledge stands in stark contrast to Ontario Premier Doug Ford's stance on DST. Earlier in March, the premier told reporters in Barrie that "I think will stick with the daylight saving time, just like the rest of North America."

With the U.S. on the cusp of making DST permanent, Ford's stance could easily change in the coming days or weeks.

A relic of agrarian roots, the value and practicality of DST to modern society is debatable. For urban dwellers, it's often just considered a pain, especially in the days after the two yearly clock changes.

But responses to Del Duca's tweet seem to indicate that not everyone is on board with his promise, many suggesting that this isn't the correct approach.

Comments suggest that some would rather see standard time made permanent, though such a move would put the province out of step with its neighbours.

Others are wondering why Del Duca is adding this to his list of campaign promises at a time when there are more pressing matters to debate.

Ontario will go to the polls on June 2, and until then, it's anyone's guess how much effect this promise will have on voters.

Lead photo by

Phil Marion

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