My Elves and I enjoyed meeting with everyone along the route of this year's Belleville Santa Claus Parade Sunday evening. It was nice to see so many faces along Bridge Street to celebrate the holiday season.
Our government has provided Quinte Health Care an additional $5 million in 2019-2020 funding to operate its four hospitals in Belleville, Trenton, Prince Edward County and Bancroft. I made the announcement with Hastings-Lennox and Addington MPP Daryl Kramp at Trenton Memorial Hospital Oct. 18. For more information, see the News Releases page.
This morning, I joined Belleville Mayor Mitch Panciuk to announce our government has approved the City's request for a Class EA exemption to speed up needed widening of Bell Boulevard to four lanes from Sidney Street to Wallbridge-Loyalist Road. The Province has also committed $1,666,500 to project costs, pending a federal contribution, through the ICIP Rural and Northern stream. For more, see the news releases page.
Ontario government announces $15 million in transition funding for wineries, cideries, and distilleries
I was pleased to have Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Ernie Hardeman join me at Three Dog Winery in Prince Edward County to announce $15 million in transition funding supporting the continued growth and prosperity of wineries, cideries and distilleries as our government completes its review of the beverage alcohol sector. For more, see the Press Releases page.
Human trafficking is an appalling crime that robs the safety, livelihood and dignity of those being exploited and abused.
This morning, I stopped at the OnRoute in Trenton for #ProjectOnRoute, which is raising awareness that Ontario - and the 400-series highway corridors, in particular - is a major hub for this despicable act. Nearly two-thirds of police-reported cases in Canada occur in this province.
In the majority of cases, victims are female with youth and Indigenous women identified as being especially vulnerable. Nearly 75 per cent of human trafficking victims identified by police are under age 25 and the average age of entry into sex trafficking is 13 years old.
To find out about Ontario's efforts to stop trafficking and help survivors, visit Ontario.ca/humantrafficking.
To get help, report a tip, or find community services, contact the Canadian Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-833-900-1010 or www.canadianhumantraffickinghotline.ca.
On Thursday, June 20, Bay of Quinte MPP Todd Smith was sworn in as Ontario's new Minister of Children, Community and Social Services. Here, he poses with Lt.-Gov. Elizabeth Dowdeswell and Premier Doug Ford during the swearing-in ceremony. Smith said he's eager to jump into his new portfolio and consult with stakeholders. For more, see News Releases.