Friday October 6, 2017 - Premier Kathleen Wynne issued the following statement today
thanking Deb Matthews for her service to the people of Ontario:
"Deb is one of the most compassionate people I know. She is and has always been
in politics for all the right reasons. Deb believes, to her core, in the ability
of government to be a force for good. And she proves that to be true each and every
The people of London North Centre have been fortunate to have Deb as their fiercest
advocate for nearly 15 years. And she has channeled her energy, empathy and intellect
into serving people right across Ontario, particularly during her time as Minister
of Children and Youth Services, Minister of Health and, most recently, as Minister
of Advanced Education and Skills Development.
Deb has always believed in the potential people have to overcome barriers and achieve
great things. She was instrumental in advocating for and designing the new OSAP
in Ontario because she believed that a student's decision about attending college
or university ought to be based on their dreams, not how much their parents earn.
And this September, 210,000 students are receiving free tuition and many more will
graduate with less debt. Imagine the potential we are unleashing by opening the
door to higher education to so many students who may otherwise never have continued
Deb and I were both elected to office in 2003. We connected immediately over our
shared mission to create opportunities for people to thrive and give a voice to
those who are too often underrepresented and overlooked. We have worked in lockstep
ever since, which is why Deb has also been my Deputy Premier from day one.
She shares my vision of a fairer, more progressive, more inclusive Ontario and she
knows what it will take to make that happen. Because of that, I have relied on Deb
as a touchstone time and time again. She is smart and analytical, always thinking
things through by focusing on the people who will be most affected. In trying to
make government a true force for good and agent for positive change, we regularly
grapple with tough issues and hard decisions and I always want to know what Deb
That's why I feel privileged to have had her by my side all these years and I'm
thrilled that Deb will be staying on as an MPP and also continuing her work as campaign
co-chair through the 2018 election. We are extremely pleased to have her in that
Very quickly after we met, Deb and I became close friends. She has always, always
supported me, which is why I completely understand, appreciate and support her decision
to retire as an MPP at this time. Anyone who knows Deb knows how much she loves
babies and so I'm very happy to know that she will have more time to spend with
her five grandchildren and her entire family.
I thank Deb for the enormous contribution she has made during her time in government
and for being part of the progress that's continuing to happen in Ontario. Deb believes,
as I do, that a fairer, better Ontario is possible. I have no doubt that motivation
combined with Deb's passion for her community will lead to more great things and
I wish her every success in the future."