Dear Premier:

I am writing to urge you to take immediate action into the closure of Goodwill stores in seven communities across the province leaving hundreds of hardworking people and their families in limbo.

As you know, on January 18th—without warning—Goodwill Industries closed all 16 of its stores in Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, Newmarket, Barrie, Orillia and Brockville, putting more than 430 people out of work.

The situation is alarming, Premier. As the Ontario New Democrat Labour critic, I am urging the Liberal government to take immediate steps to get to the bottom of what led 430 Goodwill employees in these communities to be out on the street without warning from the organization.

Goodwill received millions in revenue in 2014. It has received at least $4 million a year from the province. The CEO, whose decision it was to shut down operations citing a “fiscal crisis”, makes well over $230,000 a year. Meanwhile, the 430 affected employees are among the most vulnerable of workers, and those who need our help most rely on these stores to stay open every day. They depend on their government, and all they’ve gotten so far is silence and inaction.

These workers are dedicated, Premier. They’ve worked hard for Goodwill, and the stores have become pillars in their communities. Being thrown out of work without notice is devastating, and their government’s silence and inaction is unacceptable.

I urge you to take immediate action.


(Original signed)

Cindy Forster
MPP, Welland

cc: Hon. Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour
Hon. Deborah Matthews, Deputy Premier of Ontario
Hon. Reza Moridi, Minister of Training Colleges and Universities
Hon. Helena Jazcek, Minister of Community and Social Services