Ontario Liberal Party Leader Steven Del Duca is blaming Premier Doug Ford for the pandemic crisis in the province and says that a “COVID-19 Czar with unimpeachable scientific integrity” is needed to lead Ontarians out of it. He is recommending Dr. Steini Brown or Dr. David Naylor be appointed in the role.
“Later today, I expect that Doug Ford will tell the people of this province that we are worse off at this moment than at any other time since this crisis began. That’s because he failed us,” Del Duca said in a statement issued Friday morning.
“From the beginning, whether he admits it or not, Doug Ford effectively made himself Ontario’s COVID-19 Czar. Ontario needs a real COVID-19 Czar with unimpeachable scientific integrity to make the decisions that will lead us through the rest of this crisis without Doug Ford’s partisan, anti-science interference.
“I recommend that Dr. Steini Brown or Dr. David Naylor be appointed to take on this role, effective immediately – they are trusted, credible and qualified.”
He is also calling the province to immediately pre-register all Ontarians for a vaccine.
“This would reassure the millions of people who are still confused about when they’ll be eligible that they are registered and can look forward to an appointment when it is their turn,” his statement read.
Other measures that must be taken today include dramatically increasing vaccine supply for hotspots, redefining “essential workplaces” to limit it to critical components of the food supply chain, and the immediate adoption of paid sick leave for all workers, said Del Duca.
The provincial Liberal leader also wants opposition leaders to be included in future briefings so that they can understand the advice he is receiving as well as provide constructive feedback on proposed measures.
“To ensure Doug Ford is truly acting on expert advice, there should be briefings for opposition leaders as well,” Del Duca added. “This would help us provide constructive feedback on the government’s measures, and would help us understand the advice he’s receiving.”