Ford blasted for layoffs

The federal labour minister is blasting the Ontario government over the impending loss of 550 jobs at Bombardier’s railway car plant in Thunder Bay, Ont.

Patty Hajdu lays the blame for the losses at the feet of Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservative government, saying in a statement that Ford failed to deliver on a promised contract for the facility in her hometown.

Bombardier Inc. is laying off half of the 1,100 workers at plant after two major contracts in Ontario — for the Toronto Transit Commission streetcars and Metrolinx GO Transit rail cars — are slated to halt by the end of the year.

An official announcement from the company is expected later today.

The transportation giant has been downsizing its aerospace and railway operation for several years as it attempts to improve profitability.

In a statement Tuesday, Ontario Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney urged the company to work with her government to come to an agreement to save jobs at the plant.

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