Good jobs can do so much more than offer people the foundation for building a life and providing for their families, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne says.
They can help build a better society.
“We don’t just seek good jobs as an end to themselves. We seek good jobs because they build the fairer, more equitable society we want,” Wynne said in her address to the Good Jobs Summit this afternoon.
Equity-seeking groups such as Aboriginals, women and the disadvantaged are often hurt most when there is an economic downturn, Wynne said. An emphasis on good jobs, however, can help address inequity.
“An economy that preys on those on the margins cannot be the engine of a just society,” Wynne said. “An economy that serves our collective needs and aspirations – that is what we strive for.”
Wynne pointed to her government’s promise to increase the wages of Personal Support Workers by $4 an hour as an example of how good jobs can address inequities in society.
“The women – let’s face it, the women – who do that work deserve a decent wage.”
Wynne commended organizers of the Summit, saying that only by working together can groups that too often oppose each other find the solutions that are needed.
“What you are doing here is central to what our government is trying to do,” she said.
The recent announcement of 1,000 new jobs at the Ford manufacturing plant in Oakville, Ontario, is an example of business, labour and government putting aside their differences for the moment to work together and find a way to create good jobs, she said.
Such efforts are needed on an ongoing basis to build an economy that can create the good jobs we need, Wynne said.
“The economy has to work in service of the people,” she said.