Ontario Premier Doug Ford said the federal health care agreement with provinces has nothing to do with a federal Digital ID, “full stop.”
Ford tweeted his announcement on Thursday.
“I’ve been hearing from Ontarians who are concerned about their personal health data being shared as part of the new federal health agreement,” Ford said.
“The Ontario government will never share anyone’s personalized health information — digital or otherwise — with the federal government,” he added.
Ford also said the feds never requested this as part of the deal. He said the feds want non-personalized health statistics to improve healthcare issues such as wait times and access to doctors.
“As we invest in and improve the care people receive, the Ontario government will not weaken the personal health privacy rights of its citizens. Full stop.”
Critics, however, are skeptical that the Trudeau Liberals have no plans to do so in the long run.
Last year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government unveiled its ambitious federal “Digital Identity Program.”
As first reported by True North’s Cosmin Dzsurdzsa, included in Canada’s Digital Ambition 2022 are details about how the federal government is building a digital identity infrastructure that will affect all Canadians.
“The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the need for government services to be accessible and flexible in the digital age. The next step in making services more convenient to access is a federal Digital Identity Program, integrated with pre-existing provincial platforms,” the report reads.
Citizens concerned with the Trudeau Liberals increasing their control over Canadians grew as the federal health care plan was being discussed. Many wondered if Trudeau would tie a Digital ID into his offer to Premiers.
Subsequently, Alberta’s Premier Danielle Smith and Saskatchewan Premier Moe assured their constituents that they wouldn’t accept Digital IDs as a condition for federal health care funding.
“I agree and stand firmly with @PremierScottMoe in protecting Albertans’ private health information,” Smith said last week.
“I will ensure that any agreements with the Federal Government do NOT include the sharing of any such personal information with the Feds or third party. #cdnpoli #abpoli.”
As Canadians increasingly look for security in the digital landscape, two major players have emerged in the conception, design, and development of Canada’s Digital ID — including one with close ties to the World Economic Forum (WEF).