An NDP MPP has apologized after swearing at Premier Doug Ford in the legislature on Wednesday following a question to Ford regarding loosening coronavirus restrictions in the Windsor region.
Essex MPP Taras Natyshak called the premier a “piece of s***” during the exchange.
“The premier did announce this morning that he finally, now, today, has a plan to move Windsor and Essex and Leamington to Stage 2 weeks after local officials, citizens, and businesses have been begging him to show leadership,” Natyshak said in his question.
“A good leader doesn’t leave anyone behind. A good leader identifies the threats early and moves the resources where they are needed most. Will the premier finally commit to deploying all available resources to test, trace, and contain the outbreak on farms so that all communities in Windsor, Essex, and Chatham-Kent who have sacrificed so much can safely reopen and rebuild our economy?”
The Windsor region was the last area in Ontario to remain in Stage 1 of reopening on Wednesday as a result of COVID-19 outbreaks among migrant workers.
Ford announced on Wednesday that most areas in the Windsor region would be permitted to move to Stage 2 as of Thursday, with the exception of Leamington and Kingsvill, which have seen a large number of cases among migrant workers.
“I wasn’t going to mention this. Now since he sent a missile over, I’ll tell you what the head of the association said,” Ford said in response to Natyshak’s question.
“They named the member from Essex without prompting me and named his name and said he has done absolutely nothing here. Absolutely nothing. And I didn’t prompt this. He actually called you out by name.”
Natyshak was then heard saying the profanity, and subsequently withdrew the comment after being prompted by the speaker.
“That’s the first time I’ve ever heard anything like this in the house. Honestly,” Ford said.
In a press conference Wednesday afternoon, Ford said he forgave Natyshak.
“It’s water off a duck’s back. I’ll tell ya I’ve never heard anyone swear in over 200 times I’ve been in the house. You just don’t do that. But, you know, it happens,” Ford said.
“Let’s just move on.”
Natyshak apologized in a press conference later in the day.
“I used unparliamentary language in the house in a question to the premier and I want to take the opportunity to apologize to the premier and to my colleagues in the house,” he said.
— With files from The Canadian Press
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