Ontarians go to the polls on June 2 to elect a new provincial government. The Ontario Progressive Conservatives, led by Premier Doug Ford, are looking to hold onto power, while the provincial Liberals and NDP are each hoping to take control of the next provincial legislature.
When it comes time to cast their ballot, every voter has their own set priorities, and the parties put out policy platforms to help explain where they stand on the issues.
The Issues That Matter to the Aftermarket
Frequently, however, the issues that matter to the aftermarket are nowhere to be found on the party platforms. That’s why when the election was called, AIA Canada identified three issues that we considered important for the automotive aftermarket industry in Ontario. These issues revolved around skilled trade development, the right to repair and vehicle-data ownership, and certification in the collision repair industry.
Our government relations team contacted the three major political parties in Ontario and posed the following questions:
- Will your government continue to support training for automotive tradespeople and fund programs like the federal Skills Development Fund to help train and upskill tradespeople?
- Will your government introduce “right to repair” legislation that maintains owners’ access to their vehicle data and to be able to choose where they service their vehicle?
- Would you work with the collision repair industry and explore the certification of the collision repair industry?
Where the Parties Stand
On the whole, the responses we received were positive. All parties expressed support for the skilled trades, with the Liberals proposing $1 billion in funding for colleges and universities to support upskilling, while the PCs touted their $114.4 million Skilled Trades Strategy.
On the topic of right to repair, the NDP expressed a willingness to work with their federal colleagues, like NDP MP Brian Masse, who has introduced a federal right to repair bill, to explore similar legislation. The Liberals were more direct, stating, “Simply put, an Ontario Liberal government would introduce “right to repair” legislation.”
The Liberal and NDP both expressed a willingness to work with the collision industry to explore certification, while the PCs discussed their certification efforts related to the towing industry.
Make an Informed choice
We encourage you to read the PC, Liberal, and NDP responses in full. Having a better understanding of where each party stands when it comes to the automotive aftermarket will help you make an informed choice when it comes time to vote.
You can find out where to vote in your riding by consulting the Elections Ontario website.