“We need more voices and more democracy at Queen’s Park. Successive governments have removed tools from opposition parties and independent members to consolidate more power in the hands of the government.
The government’s motion makes the situation worse.
That is why the Liberal and Green parties have worked across party lines to halt this trend and restore some balance to the House.
This is why I will be supporting MPP Des Rosiers’ amended motion to provide independent parties with more time at Queen’s Park.
People deserve to see fair and meaningful debate in the legislature. Debate that represents the diverse views of the province – not debate that is controlled solely by the governing party.
The government recognized this in 2003 when the NDP did not receive enough votes to form official party status.
This amendment allocates the same amount of time that the NDP received in 2003 to the Liberal and Green members based on our seat allocation.
This is fair. This is right. This ensures that the 25% of the electorate who voted Liberal or Green have an opportunity for their voices to be heard in the Legislature in proportion to the will of voters.
I encourage the House leaders to engage in respectful negotiations with independent members to revise the standing orders in a way that respects the people of Ontario and ensures people receive the representation they deserve.”