NDP Education Critic MPP Sattler Slams Wynne Government on False “Free” Tuition Claims

Queen’s Park – During question period Monday, MPP Peggy Sattler demanded to know why Ontario students are still being burdened with massive loans while the Wynne government continues to promote “free” tuition.

Sattler, who is the MPP for London West, was contacted earlier this month by Londoner Maria Van Burgsteden who was dismayed to learn that her daughter Julia would only receive a $3,000 grant and would have to take out a $9,000 student loan – definitely not free tuition – to cover first-year tuition and mandatory student fees.

“Does the acting premier think it is appropriate to tell Julia and her mother and all other Ontarians that tuition is “free” when, in fact, it is anything but?” asked Sattler.

Deputy Premier Deb Matthews ignored Sattler’s real life example from London, and doubled down on the Wynne government’s false claims that do not reflect the reality for the Van Burgsteden family.

Maria is a single mother who works contract to contract, with an annual average income of less than $45,000. This past year, Maria secured a contract that offered pay in lieu of benefits, pushing her income to just over $50,000.

“Even though Julia will be living at home while she is at university, money is tight,” said Sattler. “Julia is worried about having to repay a $9,000 OSAP loan that could amount to a $36,000 debt after four years.”

“Does the acting premier think it is okay to saddle young people like Julia with massive student loans?” demanded Sattler.