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Premier Ford Announces New Ontario Cabinet

This morning, Premier Doug Ford released the names of his new cabinet, as the PC government starts its second term in office after winning a successive majority government in June. TIAO offers its warm congratulations to Ontario’s new cabinet, especially to those entering for the first time.  

There are changes to both personnel and the make-up of portfolios in this cabinet. Neil Lumsden has been appointed the new Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport. Minister Lumsden was elected for the first time in the Hamilton East—Stoney Creek riding in June. Many of you will know Minister Lumsden from his successful Canadian Football League career, where he represented the Toronto Argonauts, Hamilton Tiger-Cats and the Edmonton Eskimos over a decade long career.  

The tourism industry has faced two and half years of closures and restrictions with catastrophic consequences. Only with the innovation and resilience of our industry combined with support from government, have we helped to sustain our industry. But whilst the lockdowns and restrictions on capacity have finally ended, new challenges that are just are just as critical to our future continue to pose a severe threat to our recovery.  

We need to remove the obstacles to travel that remain in place such as vaccine mandates and the onerous ArriveCAN application. We need to address the ongoing economic legacies of the pandemic, including debt and spiraling commercial insurance costs that combined with record inflation and gas costs are making the cost of businesses untenable. Finally, we need a strategic plan that combats our labour crisis, a crisis that has the potential to derail our recovery. 

TIAO looks forward to meeting with Minister Lumsden to address these issues across our province, recognizing the challenges and varying needs of tourism in northern, southern, rural, and urban Ontario. By working together, we can ensure that Ontario is not only the number one destination for international and domestic leisure and business travel, but for those looking to work or invest in the tourism industry. 

TIAO also recognizes Minister Monte McNaughton, who returns to the Labour, Training, and Skills Development portfolio, which has expanded with the addition of the Immigration file. TIAO has worked closely with Minister McNaughton and his team to deliver key pieces of legislation that have supported the financial solvency of tourism businesses at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. We congratulate Minister McNaughton on his expanded ministerial role—one which recognizes the importance of immigration to our future workforce—and we look forward to continuing to work with him and his team to develop solutions to our industry’s labour crisis.   

Finally, TIAO would like to recognize and thank Lisa MacLeod MPP for her dedication and commitment to our industry before and during the pandemic. It has not been an easy task to represent an industry so fundamentally and severely impacted as ours. But throughout her time in office, former Minister MacLeod has not only secured vital economic support for our industry, but ensured our role as a key economic driver and double bottom line is recognized by government.  




Christopher Bloore 

President & CEO  

Tourism Industry Association of Ontario  

207 Queen’s Quay West, Suite 405, Toronto, ON, M5J 1A7