OSHAWA – Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath was at Felicio’s Cake Boutique in Oshawa Tuesday to meet with Steve Bagshaw and Garry Reay – local residents whose lives would be changed with Horwath's Pharmacare for Everyone plan and Dental Care for Everyone plan.
“Steve can’t retire, because if he does, he'll lose his benefits and face a $21,000 per year bill for his diabetes medication,” said Horwath. “And Garry and his wife Shauna have had no dental coverage at all for most of their kids' lives, they are 9 and 12. Garry even had a tooth fall out because he couldn't afford to have the root canal he needed. People like Steve, Shauna and Garry, and folks all across Ontario, should never have to go without the care they need because they can’t afford it.
"The thing is, it absolutely does not have to be this way. Change for the better is not just possible -- it's on the way."
Horwath was joined by NDP MPP and candidate for Oshawa Jennifer French and Whitby candidate Niki Lundquist was also on hand.
“These are issues I hear about every day in my constituency office,” said French. “After decades of Liberal and Conservative governments, no progress has been made to give folks like Steve and Garry coverage for care. For 15 years, the Liberals made life more expensive, and only cut services instead of expanding them. We have to stop choosing between bad and worse when it comes to health care in Ontario.”
The NDP’s Dental Care for Everyone will publicly fund dental coverage for millions of people, including those on social assistance and seniors who don’t have retirement benefits. It will also create a minimum standard for dental plans that will apply to all employers -- which can be fulfilled through a new publicly administered and affordable
Ontario Benefits option, or with any comparable plan. Horwath is the only leader who has tabled a universal pharmacare plan -- which would provide drug coverage for every Ontarian, regardless of age income or job status.
“Andrea’s plan to cover everyone’s prescription medications, regardless of age, is the only plan that will help Steve,” said Lundquist. “And Andrea’s dental plan will mean that Garry and Shauna can finally stop worrying about how they will afford dental care for their family of four. Ontario is a great place to live, and we can do so much better to make sure everyone can afford to build a good life here.”