Transcript: Separating Northern Ontario | Sep 06, 2016

Steve sits in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and spotted blue tie.

A caption on screen reads "Northern Ontario separation?"

Steve says NORTH OF THE FRENCH RIVER,
FRUSTRATION WITH QUEEN'S PARK
HAS REKINDLED INTEREST IN
CREATING A NEW, SEPARATE
PROVINCE FOR ONTARIO'S NORTH.
TREVOR HOLLIDAY IS LEADER OF THE
NEWLY CREATED NORTHERN ONTARIO
PARTY, AND HE JOINS US NOW FOR MORE.

Trevor is in his thirties, clean-shaven, with short blond hair. He's wearing glasses, a brown suit, and a checkered shirt.

Steve continues TREVOR, IT'S GOOD TO MEET YOU.

Trevor says THANK YOU.

Steve says THANKS FOR COMING IN
TO TVO.
THIS IDEA OF A SEPARATE PROVINCE
FOR NORTHERN ONTARIO IS
SOMETHING THAT SEEMS TO COME UP
EVERY GENERATION OR SO.
WHAT GOT YOU INTERESTED IN IT?

The caption changes to "Trevor Holliday. Northern Ontario Party."
Then, it changes again to "A party is born."

Trevor says STEVE,
SINCE IT'S ALWAYS IN THE BACK OF
THE MINDS OF NORTHERNERS, IT'S A
GROWING CONCERN NOW BECAUSE THE
NORTHERN CONCERNS AREN'T BEING
HEARD, AREN'T BEING DEALT WITH
OR EVEN BEING CONSIDERED WHEN
DECISIONS ARE BEING MADE,
ESPECIALLY AT QUEEN'S PARK.
SO NORTHERNERS HAVE COME TO THE
POINT WHERE WE WANT TO BE HEARD
AND I FELT IT'S THE PERFECT TIME
BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, I WANT A
FUTURE FOR MY KIDS AND I WANT TO
BE ABLE TO HAVE THEM STAY UP
NEAR HOME.
I WANT TO SEE GRANDKIDS.
I WANT TO SEE FAMILY.
AND I WANT THE NORTH TO SUCCEED
FOR EVERYBODY'S FAMILIES.

Steve says YOU'RE 33 YEARS OLD.

Trevor says YES.

Steve says HOW MANY KIDS DO YOU
HAVE?

Trevor says FOUR.

Steve says HOW OLD ARE THEY?

Trevor says THE
OLDEST IS TURNING 13 AND THE
YOUNGEST JUST TURNED TWO.

Steve says AND YOUR FEAR IS,
LIKE MANY YOUNG PEOPLE WHO GROW
UP IN THE NORTH, THEY'RE GOING
TO LEAVE AND NOT COME BACK.

Trevor says THEY'RE
GOING TO MOVE SOUTH BECAUSE
THAT'S WHERE THE ONLY JOBS ARE
LEFT THAT ARE LONG TERM.

Steve says LET ME FOLLOW UP ON
SOMETHING YOU SAID IN THE FIRST
ANSWER.
THE ISSUES THAT WE CARE ABOUT
AREN'T BEING HEARD AT QUEEN'S
PARK.
GIVE ME AN EXAMPLE.

Trevor says COST OF
LIVING PRICES.
ENERGY.
GAS.
MORE TAXES BEING PUT IN.
AND THEN THE COST OF... THE COST
OF ANYTHING YOU WANT IN NORTHERN
ONTARIO IS... THERE'S NO RELIEF
FOR IT, WHERE IT'S THE COLDEST
PART.
SO A RISE IN HYDRO RATES, A RISE
IN GAS PRICES... IT'S FELT
HARDER BY NORTHERNERS BECAUSE WE
HAVE THE COLD SEASON A LOT
LONGER AND A LOT MORE HARSH.

Steve says LET'S BE CLEAR.
EVERYBODY COMPLAINS ABOUT
ELECTRICITY PRICES, RIGHT?
THEY ARE HIGH.

Trevor says THEY ARE.

Steve says YOU THINK
NORTHERNERS OUGHT TO BE HEARD
MORE BECAUSE THE WEATHER IS
HARSHER UP THERE AND THEREFORE
YOU PAY MORE.

Trevor says EXACTLY,
YES.

Steve says GOT IT.
WAS THERE A TIPPING POINT FOR
YOU... YOU'RE A BUS DRIVER,
RIGHT?

Trevor says YES.

Steve says AT SOME POINT
PRESUMABLY THERE WAS A TIPPING
POINT FOR YOU WHERE YOU SAID I'M
NOT SATISFIED DRIVING THE BUS
ANYMORE.
I'VE GOT TO GET ENGAGED IN
POLITICS?
WHAT WAS IT?

Trevor says I'M STILL
DOING BOTH.
BUT I'VE GOT A PASSION FOR BOTH.
I LOVE DRIVING.
I LOVE BEING ON THE ROADS,
ESPECIALLY NORTHERN ONTARIO.
THAT'S HOME.
BUT HEARING DIFFERENT PASSENGERS
AND THEIR STORIES ON WHAT THEY
HAVE TO GO THROUGH EVEN TO SEEK
HEALTH CARE, A MOTHER AND HER
SON THAT HAD TO FLY IN A
HELICOPTER FROM MOOSE FACTORY TO
MOOSONEE, THEN HOP A BUS TO GO
TO TIMMINS BECAUSE HER SON WAS
SICK AND SHE WAS IN WORSE
CONDITION BUT SHE WASN'T
CONCERNED ABOUT HERSELF.
THAT WAS THE TIPPING POINT WHEN
I HEARD THE STRUGGLES SHE HAD TO
GO THROUGH AND THE ONLY REASON
SHE WENT TO SEEK MEDICAL HELP
WAS BECAUSE HER SON WAS REALLY SICK.

Steve says I WANT TO UNDERSTAND
THIS MORE BECAUSE WE'RE TEN
MINUTES FROM MOUNT SINAI,
TORONTO GENERAL, THE HOSPITAL
FOR SICK CHILDREN, PRINCESS
MARGARET.
WE'VE GOT SOME PHENOMENAL HEALTH
CARE SERVICES IN DOWNTOWN
TORONTO.
YOU'RE NOT EXPECTING THAT NORTH
OF THE FRENCH RIVER.
WHAT ARE YOU EXPECTING?

The caption changes to "Trevor Holliday, @NORTHERN_ON"

Trevor says IT WOULD
BE NICE TO HAVE MORE OPTIONS.
NORTHERN ONTARIO HAS THE
NORTHERN ONTARIO SCHOOL OF MED
SIP WHICH PUTS... MEDICINE WHICH
PUTS OUT GREAT DOCTORS AND
NURSES.

Steve says WHO STAY IN THE
NORTH?

Trevor says NO.
THEY TRANSFER BECAUSE THERE ARE
MORE JOBS, MORE SPECIALTIES DOWN
SOUTH.

Steve says I CAN ONLY TELL YOU
THE LATEST NUMBERS THAT 85 percent OF
THEM STAY IN THE NORTH.

Trevor says NOT LONG
TERM.

Steve says WHAT'S LONG TERM?

Trevor says THEY GET
THEIR EXPERIENCE... LONG TERM,
10, 15, 20 YEARS.
A LOT OF THEM ARE STARTING TO
COME BACK NORTH BUT THAT'S
BECAUSE THERE'S MORE DEMAND FOR
IT.
WHEN YOU'VE GOT HOSPITALS THAT
ARE CUTTING BACK FUNDING, LIKE
THE NORTH BAY HOSPITAL.
I CAN SPEAK FROM EXPERIENCE.
THE CURRENT GOVERNMENT USUALLY
ALLOTS 6.6 OR 6 percent FOR AN
INCREASE IN BUDGET.
WELL, THIS PAST YEAR, IT WAS
1.1 percent.
SO THE INCREASE ISN'T THERE.
THEY BUILT A BRAND NEW
STATE-OF-THE-ART HOSPITAL THAT
THEY'RE HAVING TROUBLES KEEPING
STAFFED BECAUSE THERE'S NOT
ENOUGH FUNDING TO KEEP THESE
PEOPLE NORTH.

Steve says LET ME FOLLOW UP
AGAIN.
THUNDER BAY, THEY JOKE ABOUT IT,
CALLING IT THE TAJMA HOSPITAL,
SUDBURY GOT A NEW HOSPITAL.
ADMITTEDLY AS SOMEBODY WHO LIVES
SOUTH OF THE FRENCH RIVER, THAT
LOOKS LIKE BIG MONEY AND BIG
SERVICES.
NOT THE CASE?

Trevor says YOU CAN
BUILD A BIG BUILDING BUT IT
DOESN'T MEAN IT'S GOING TO
FUNCTION PROPERLY IF YOU DON'T
HAVE THE PEOPLE IN THERE TO
OPERATE IT.
THE HOSPITALS THAT WERE UP THERE
WERE OUT OF DATE.
THEY WERE WAY OUT OF DATE.
THEY WERE COLD ROOMS.

Steve says THAT'S WHY THEY GOT
A NEW ONE.

Trevor says SO THEY
PUT NEW ONES IN WITH LESS STAFF
THAN THEY HAD IN THE OLD ONES.

Steve says WHY DO YOU BELIEVE A
NEW PROVINCE OF NORTHERN ONTARIO
WOULD IMPROVE ANY OF THIS?

The caption changes to "A growing discontent."

Trevor says NORTHERN
ONTARIO CITIZENS WOULD BE ABLE
TO HAVE THEIR SAY AND ACTUALLY
BE HEARD.
THERE ARE MINISTERS IN NORTHERN
ONTARIO RIGHT NOW WHO DO TRY AND
PUSH TO HAVE VOICES HEARD, BUT
THEY QUICKLY BACK DOWN WHEN
THERE'S ANY CONFRONTATION OR
THEY'RE NOT GOING TO STEP UP AND
SAY, "WE NEED MORE VOICES HEARD.
WE NEED TO BE HEARD."
BECAUSE OUR PEOPLE ARE STARTING
TO SUFFER UP HERE.

Steve says I THINK THERE ARE
FOUR LIBERAL MPPs FROM THE
NORTH.
THEY'RE ALL IN CABINET.
SO THEY ALL HAVE A SEAT AT THE
BIG TABLE.

Trevor says THEY'RE
ALL GOING TO DO WHAT THE PARTY
WANTS THEM TO DO, NOT
NECESSARILY WHAT THE PEOPLE WANT
THEM TO DO.
THEY WANT TO KEEP POWER.
THEY WANT TO KEEP MAJORITY.
SO THEY'RE GOING TO GO WITH WHAT
THE MANTLE OF VOTERS WANT...
MAJORITY OF VOTERS AND THE
MAJORITY OF VOTERS ARE IN THE
SOUTH.

Steve says PREMIER WYNNE DID A
BIT OF A NORTHERN SWING OVER THE
SUMMER, SHE STOPPED BY
MANITOULIN ISLAND WHERE I
COINCIDENTALLY HAPPENED TO BE AT
THE TIME AND BROUGHT MY TAPE
RECORDER AND WE HAD A LITTLE
CHAT.
LET'S ROLL THE CLIP, PLEASE.

A slate shows a picture of Kathleen Wynne and flashes text as her voice is heard.

She says WHAT I DO KNOW IS THAT I
GOVERN ONTARIO.
WHEN WE LOOK AT POLICIES AT OUR
CABINET TABLE, WE HAVE FOUR
MINISTERS FROM THE NORTH WHO
RAISE ISSUES ON A REGULAR BASIS
AND SEE ACTION, YOU KNOW,
WHETHER IT'S THE SPRING BEAR
HUNT OR WHETHER IT'S
INVESTMENTS, LIKE THE
ANNOUNCEMENT I MADE TODAY, I
KNOW WE ARE PAYING ATTENTION TO
THE NEEDS OF THE WHOLE PROVINCE,
SO IF THAT'S NOT GETTING
THROUGH, THEN THAT MAY BE...
THAT MAY BE PART OF THE
CHALLENGE.
BUT I BELIEVE THAT WE'RE
STRONGER AS A PROVINCE IF WE
HAVE AN INTEGRATED COMMUNITY,
INTEGRATED SOCIETY, AND THAT'S
WHY I SEE US AS ONE ONTARIO.

The recording ends.

Steve says ONE ONTARIO.
SHE THINKS YOU'RE BETTER OFF
WITH ONE ONTARIO.
WHAT WOULD YOU QUIBBLE WITH
THERE?

The caption changes to "Changing the province."

Trevor says WHAT I
WOULD SAY IN RESPONSE TO THAT
IS: PROVE WHY WE SHOULD STAY
TOGETHER?
PROVE WHY NORTHERN ONTARIO
SHOULD STAY PART OF ONTARIO AS A
WHOLE?

Steve says ONTARIO HAS BEEN
ONTARIO FOR 150 YEARS.
ISN'T IT INCUMBENT UPON YOU TO
PROVE WHY IT OUGHT TO BE SPLIT
IN TWO?

Trevor says TECHNICALLY, WHEN YOU LOOK AT
THE MAP, NORTHERN ONTARIO USED
TO BE PART OF THE NORTHWEST
TERRITORIES.
AND THEN AT ONE POINT IT BECAME
NEW ONTARIO.
SO THERE WAS SEPARATION THERE.
THERE WAS DIVISION THERE.
BUT THEN THAT'S WHEN IT STARTED
FORMING AS ONTARIO IN ITS
GEOGRAPHICAL...

Steve says THAT'S 150 YEARS
AGO, TREVOR.

Trevor says BUT STILL,
YOU KNOW, THE CONSTANT PROBLEMS
ARE HAPPENING, NOT JUST IN
ONTARIO BUT MOST OF THE NORTHERN
PROVINCES, BECAUSE THE
POPULATION IS IN THE SOUTH SO
THE NORTH HAS TO FIGHT TO BE
HEARD, AND EVEN EQUAL
REPRESENTATION.

Steve says I DON'T WANT TO
START A NORTH-SOUTH THING HERE,
BUT, YOU KNOW, I'M SURE THERE
ARE PEOPLE WATCHING THIS RIGHT
NOW SAYING, WHAT WOULD NORTHERN
ONTARIO DO IF ALL OF THE TAX
REVENUE GENERATED BY ALL OF THE
ECONOMIC ACTIVITY IN TORONTO
SUDDENLY WERE NOT SPENT ON THE
NORTH?
I MEAN, SOME OF THAT IS
HAPPENING.
SOME OF THE REVENUE THAT GOES TO
PAYING FOR SERVICES IN NORTHERN
ONTARIO IS GENERATED IN THE
SOUTH.
HOW WOULD YOU SURVIVE THAT?

Trevor says THERE'S A
MISCONCEPTION ON WHAT'S COMING
FROM THE NORTH, GIVEN FROM THE
SOUTH.
RESOURCES.
THE MINISTRY OF NORTHERN
DEVELOPMENT AND MINES IN 2013
THIS A SURPLUS.
THAT'S MONEY JUST OUT OF THE
NORTH.
WHERE DID THAT MONEY GO?
WHEN ASKED OF THE GOVERNMENT
WHERE THIS MONEY GOES, WHAT
MONEY COMES FROM THE NORTH, WHAT
COMES FROM THE SOUTH?
THERE'S NO DIRECT CLEAR-CUT
NUMBERS.
YOU KNOW, THE TAX DOLLARS.
WHAT COMES OUT OF THE NORTH?
WHAT'S BEING USED BACK IN THE
NORTH?
I'VE ISSUED CHALLENGES, I'VE
ASKED, SHOW ME THE NUMBERS TO
PROVE THAT NORTHERN ONTARIO
COULD NOT SURVIVE.
THE MINES THAT ARE UP THERE, THE
RING OF FIRE DEBATE RIGHT NOW.
THAT COULD BE CAUSING HUGE
ECONOMIC DEPOSITS INTO NORTHERN
ONTARIO.

Steve says THEN AGAIN, YOU'D
HAVE TO SPEND THE BILLION
DOLLARS TO PUT THAT ROAD IN TO
GET THAT THING OPENED UP.

Trevor says WHY A
ROAD?
WHY NOT A RAIL?
BUT IF YOU PUT A ROAD IN OR A
RAIL IN, PUT IT THROUGH THE
COMMUNITIES.
YOU KNOW?
THAT WAY IT SERVES THOSE
COMMUNITIES AND NOT JUST... JUST
FOR THE RING OF FIRE.
YOU PUT A BILLION DOLLARS IN,
YOU'RE GOING TO GET MORE OUT OF
IT, AND IF IT'S FURTHER DOWN THE
LINE, THAT RAW MATERIAL IS WORTH
A LOT MORE IN THE FUTURE.
SO IT'S JUST LIKE THE FOUR-LANE
HIGHWAY.
WAIT, WAIT, WAIT, IT'S GOING TO
COST YOU TEN TIMES AS MUCH.
IF THEY WOULD HAVE DONE IT WHEN
THEY HAD THE OPTION AND IT WAS A
MILLION FOR EACH FOR FEDERAL AND
PROVINCIAL, IT WOULD BE IN
ALREADY AT A FRACTION OF THE
COST.

Steve says WE'RE DOWN TO OUR
LAST MINUTE HERE, TREVOR, AND I
DO WANT TO ASK YOU WHAT YOUR
IMMEDIATE POLITICAL GOALS ARE
SINCE YOU ARE LEADING THIS NEW
POLITICAL PARTY?

Trevor says I'M
PUSHING TO HAVE 11 CANDIDATES,
ONE IN EACH RIDING OF NORTHERN
ONTARIO, TO BE UP FOR THE NEXT
ELECTION, AND TO HAVE
NORTHERNERS EITHER PUT UP OR
SHUT UP.
COME FORWARD AND SAY, THIS IS
WHAT I WANT OR THIS IS NOT WHAT
I WANT, BECAUSE ANY POLL THAT
HAS BEEN TAKEN HAS SHOWN
MAJORITY OF NORTHERN ONTARIANS
WANT THE FREEDOM TO HAVE THEIR
SAY HEARD.

Steve says ALWAYS BETWEEN
ELECTIONS.
ANY TIME CANDIDATES HAVE GONE
FORWARD AT ELECTION TIME, NO
SEPARATIST NORTHERN PARTY HAS
EVER WON A SEAT.
WHY DO YOU THINK IT WILL BE
DIFFERENT THIS TIME?

Trevor says WE USUALLY
SIT BACK.
WE'RE NORTHERNERS.
WE SIT BACK.
WE JUST ROLL WITH THE PUNCHES.
BUT WHEN YOU HAVE A NORTHERNER
BY THE BACK POCKET, WE TEND TO
STRUGGLE.
WE'RE AT OUR WIT'S END.
I'M AT MY WIT'S END WITH HAVING
TO LIVE PAYCHEQUE TO PAYCHEQUE
JUST TO EITHER PAY THE BILLS OR
FEED THE FAMILY, YOU KNOW?
THERE'S GOT TO BE A HAPPY
MEDIUM.
I'M NOT WORKING A MINIMUM WAGE
JOB, BUT THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO
ARE WHO CANNOT MAKE THOSE ENDS
MEET.

Steve says I DO WANT TO SAY THIS.
YOU GOT UP AND HOPPED ON A BUS
AT 2:30 IN THE MORNING FOR FOUR
AND A HALF HOURS TO BE IN THIS
STUDIO TONIGHT TO SHARE YOUR
VIEWS WITH US AND WE'RE REALLY
GRATEFUL YOU DID THAT.

Trevor says THANK YOU
FOR HAVING ME.

The caption changes to "Producer: Katie O'Connor, @KA_OConnor"

Steve says THAT IS TREVOR
HOLLIDAY, THE LEADER OF THE
NORTHERN ONTARIO PARTY.
THANKS, TREVOR.

Trevor says THANK YOU.

Watch: Separating Northern Ontario