On Tuesday, Ontario’s minister of labour, Laurie Scott, introduced a bill to reform Ontario’s labour laws.
That night her constituency office in Kawartha Lakes was broken into, windows smashed, the office itself ransacked and vandalized.
“Attack workers we fight back $15,” reads graffiti on the outside of Scott’s office.
Police are investigating.
Speaking to reporters outside of the legislature at Queen’s Park peaceful Scott said protest is always welcome, violence is not.
“This type of vandalism crossing the line is not going to be accepted by anyone,” Scott said. “I need to protect the workers in our office from this intimidation and bullying.”
Vandalism plus threats.
In addition to the vandalism at Scott’s office there have also been threats made against members of the Ford government including this now deleted death threat on Twitter.
Here is an example of death threats made against Ford and Laurie Scott. pic.twitter.com/gnRd5J2kSb
— Randy Rath (@rath_randy) October 24, 2018
Simon Jefferies, a spokesman for Premier Doug Ford, said that members of the Ontario PC caucus have been getting threats since the introduction of the labour reform bill.
“PC Ministers and MPPs have received threatening messages online and phone calls to their constituency offices,” Jefferies said. “We treat these threats very seriously, and we are reporting to law enforcement.”
Violence over legislation.
The labour bill introduced by Scott on Tuesday freezes the minimum wage at $14 an hour and then ties it to inflation after that. It also removes conditions brought in by the former Liberal government such as giving 10 personal days a year that employees could take for any reason and employers could not ask any questions about.
The legislation will also scrap the College of Trades, an organization set up by the Liberals that union leaders loved and rank and file members despised. Also included in the legislation is a move to make it easier for apprentices to join the skilled trades.
While parts of this bill would anger labour activists and others make them happy, there is no excuse for violence and threats in politics.
Unfortunately we are seeing both in out politics here in Canada, just as they are south of the border once again.
It is unacceptable, must be denounced and the perpetrators must be prosecuted.