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NDP Candidate hoping win by focusing on healthcare, social safety net and environment

Beverley Patchell is the NDP candidate in Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte. We talked to her about her roots in the community and party’s platform. 

Patchell started her career in downtown Barrie working “in a chartered bank and moved around the county into different branches” where she said she “got to know a lot of the communities in the county.”  

Working as a loan and mortgage officer she “became aware of the challenges of business and small businesses” and also witnessed the departure of industry. During the recession of 1992, she witnessed “the impact to a crumbling economy when there weren’t good jobs really weighed heavy on our community.” 

“A lot of people are and have been relying on part time, casual contract employment, and this and sporadic employment. So that has created additional barriers for people to be able to thrive in the community,” she said. “So a factor that I think is relevant is that there’s good stable income and decent jobs for people in our community.”

Patchell said there is a need to fix the housing crisis for those who want to buy and rent. “So that means middle housing, entry level housing, and then ensure that for those who are looking to rent, we have programs in place that are going to ensure that they end up being able to access rent at an amount they can afford, and that’s going to include rent control.”

To solve the healthcare problem, Patchell wants to raise salaries by getting “rid of the wage freeze and we have to ensure that there are good, stable, permanent, full time jobs with good benefits.” She also wants to welcome foreign trained professionals to solve the staffing shortage. 

Patchell said the crisis in long term care is “because there’s profit from long term care and in home care.”  She also suggested high salaries for healthcare workers. 

“Poverty is just bad policy,” Patchell said. The NDP wants to double the rates of Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program. 

In her closing arguments Patchell said “the focus should be moved towards health, the social safety net, and ensuring that the next generation has a healthy place to live and grow.” 

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