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Ontario Bill To Stop Minimum Wage Hike Prompts Vandalism, Death Threats

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David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief

Ontario’s new Conservative government’s decision to forgo a minimum wage hike has resulted in death threats for Premier Doug Ford and vandalism.

As iPolitics reports, Premier Doug Ford introduced Bill 47, the Making Ontario Open for Business Act, on Tuesday, prompting death threats against Conservative Members of the Provincial Parliament (MPPs) and at least one incident of vandalism.

It just one in a series of Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s sweeping legislative initiatives that are aimed at a large part of the former Liberal government’s commitment to labor unions and environmentalism. The latest bill keeps the provincial minimum wage at $14/hour instead of the $15/hour promised by the previous government.

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford (L) and Alberta’s United Conservative Party leader Jason Kenney show their solidarity in opposing Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s carbon tax. YouTube screenshot, Oct. 6, 2018.

Although Bill 47 is being lauded by business leaders, unions and anti-poverty activists are furious over the legislation.

(RELATED: Doug Ford Deep-Sixing Ontario’s Green Energy Act)

Government House Leader Todd Smith told reporters in Toronto on Wednesday that both the premier and Economic Development Minister Jim Wilson have been targeted with death threats since announcing their intention to freeze the provincial minimum wage freeze.

“In the last 24 hours, they’ve received death threats,” Smith said.

Ford’s office has informed police about the death threats directed against the premier and other Conservative MPPs that it did not name.

Doug Ford addresses the Ontario legislature on Sept. 24, 2018. YouTube screenshot.

Doug Ford addresses the Ontario legislature on Sept. 24, 2018. YouTube screenshot.

“Ministers and MPPs have received threatening messages online and phone calls to their constituency offices,” Ford’s spokesperson Simon Jeffries told iPolitics.

(RELATED: Doug Ford To Announce ‘Ontario Is Open For Business’ At US Border)

There was also a case of vandalism. Labour Minister Laurie Scott’s constituency office was hit, with windows smashed and furniture thrown around the interior of the building. Outside, someone left a graffiti scrawl that read: “Attack Workers,” and “We fight back $15.”

“We will not tolerate vandalism, intimidation, or bullying,” Scott told reporters in Toronto on Wednesday, adding that she hoped “radical groups” opposed to the Ford government would “acknowledge that a line has been crossed here.”

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