ANTIGONISH, NS – Progressive Conservative candidate Ray Mattie says Finance Minister and Liberal MLA Randy Delorey needs to explain his role in the McNeil government’s decision to pass a controversial teachers’ contract that ignores the crisis in our classrooms.
“Mr. Delorey controls the provincial budget and has not explained why the Liberal government is spending $20 million on another committee, instead of on classroom improvements,” said Mattie. “Thousands of teachers have shared the realities they face with overcrowded classrooms, and the Liberal bill failed to address these issues. Having served as a substitute teacher, I’m aware of the challenges in our classrooms.”
Mattie says Delorey has played an equal role with the Minister of Education and Premier in leading the passage of the Liberals’ imposed contract and the bad faith approach with teachers.
“The Finance Minister was deeply involved in this decision,” said Mattie.
Mattie says that as Finance Minister, Delorey is being fiscally irresponsible by passing legislation that will certainly result in the province spending millions in legal fees. Similar legislation passed by Liberal administrations in other provinces has resulted in imposed contracts being struck down by courts.
“We know this legislation will be challenged in court and almost certainly, the Liberals will lose,” said Mattie. “Why is Mr. Delorey willing to put us on the hook for millions more that we don’t need to spend? That money would be better spent on our classrooms.”
Mattie says a Progressive Conservative government will repeal the Liberals’ imposed contract and renegotiate a new deal with the province’s teachers.
Mattie says he’s excited to promote PC leader Jamie Baillie’s education platform, which includes important initiatives like putting vocational training back in our schools, improving mental health services for students, and enforcing discipline and attendance policies.