[Ontario NDP] Andrea Horwath unhappy with mine safety review – by Rick Owen (Kirkland Lake Northern News – April 9, 2014)


KIRKLAND LAKE – With the death of a miner in Sudbury last week Provincial NDP Leader Andrea Horwath says the provincial commission investigating mine safety needs the necessary resources to do the job.

It has been 30 years since a provincial commission investigated mine safety. Since then miners in Ontario have been killed and thousands of others have been injured. Last year the premier rejected a public inquiry into mine safety and instead chose a review,” said Horwath.

She continued saying: “But at the first public hearings in Timmins and Kirkland Lake, the government didn’t advertise or even put out so much as a press release or media advisory inviting participation. Does the premier think this is acceptable?”

Concerning media notification the Northern News was sent an email from the Ministry of Labour, informing of the meetings being held in Kirkland Lake. As well the Ministry also made its Chief Prevention Officer available for an interview prior to the meetings with enough time to publish prior to the meetings, and he was very accessible to the media at the meetings. A story did run in the Northern News prior to the meetings in Kirkland Lake and after the meetings.

In addition to contacting the local media, posters advertising the meetings were put up in prominent locations around town, informing people of the meetings. The one meeting attended by the Northern News in Kirkland Lake was well attended by individual miners, mining companies, mining contractors, post secondary education institutions and many people who work for mining companies in their health and safety and training departments.

This week Horwath called on all MPPs in the legislature to observe a moment of silence to remember the life of Paul Rochette, 36, a millwright, with two young children, that was killed at Vale’s Copper Cliff Smelter.

Horwath said elected representatives need to do everything in their power to end workplace deaths and injuries and demanded the premier commit to improving the government’s mining safety review.

“The premier refuses to conduct a mine safety inquiry. Will she make a commitment today that the government’s review panel into mine safety will have the resources necessary to conduct numerous site visits to mining operations both below ground and above ground?,” stated Horwath.

For the original version of this article, click here: http://www.northernnews.ca/2014/04/09/andrea-horwath-unhappy-with-mine-safety-review


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