The working class comprises those engaged in waged or salaried labour in manual-labour occupations and industrial work. Working-class occupations include blue-collar jobs, some white-collar jobs, most pink-collar jobs. Members of the working class rely for their income upon their earnings from wage labour. In Marxist theory and socialist literature, the term working class is used interchangeably with the term proletariat and includes all workers who expend both physical and mental labour to produce economic value for the owners of the means of production; as with many terms describing social class, working class is defined and used in many different ways. The most general definition, used by Marxists and many socialists, is that the working class includes all those who have nothing to sell but their labour power and skills. In that sense it includes both white and blue-collar workers and mental workers of all types, excluding only individuals who derive their income from business ownership and the labour of others.
When used non-academically in the United States, however, it refers to a section of society dependent on physical labour when compensated with an hourly wage. For certain types of science, as well as less scientific or journalistic political analysis, for example, the working class is loosely defined as those without college degrees. Working-class occupations are categorized into four groups: unskilled labourers, artisans and factory workers. A common alternative, sometimes used in sociology, is to define class by income levels; when this approach is used, the working class can be contrasted with a so-called middle class on the basis of differential terms of access to economic resources, cultural interests, other goods and services. The cut-off between working class and middle class here might mean the line where a population has discretionary income, rather than sustenance; some researchers have suggested that working-class status should be defined subjectively as self-identification with the working-class group.
This subjective approach allows people, rather than researchers. In feudal Europe, the working class as such did not exist in large numbers. Instead, most people were part of the labouring class, a group made up of different professions and occupations. A lawyer and peasant were all considered to be part of the same social unit, a third estate of people who were neither aristocrats nor church officials. Similar hierarchies existed outside Europe in other pre-industrial societies; the social position of these labouring classes was viewed as ordained by natural law and common religious belief. This social position was contested by peasants, for example during the German Peasants' War. In the late 18th century, under the influence of the Enlightenment, European society was in a state of change, this change could not be reconciled with the idea of a changeless god-created social order. Wealthy members of these societies created ideologies which blamed many of the problems of working-class people on their morals and ethics.
In The Making of the English Working Class, E. P. Thompson argues that the English working class was present at its own creation, seeks to describe the transformation of pre-modern labouring classes into a modern, politically self-conscious, working class. Starting around 1917, a number of countries became ruled ostensibly in the interests of the working class; some historians have noted that a key change in these Soviet-style societies has been a massive a new type of proletarianization effected by the administratively achieved forced displacement of peasants and rural workers. Since four major industrial states have turned towards semi-market-based governance, one state has turned inwards into an increasing cycle of poverty and brutalization. Other states of this sort have either collapsed, or never achieved significant levels of industrialization or large working classes. Since 1960, large-scale proletarianization and enclosure of commons has occurred in the third world, generating new working classes.
Additionally, countries such as India have been undergoing social change, expanding the size of the urban working class. Karl Marx defined the working class or proletariat as individuals who sell their labour power for wages and who do not own the means of production, he argued. He asserted that the working class physically build bridges, craft furniture, grow food, nurse children, but do not own land, or factories. A sub-section of the proletariat, the lumpenproletariat, are the poor and unemployed, such as day labourers and homeless people. Marx considered them to be devoid of class consciousness. In The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels argued that it was the destiny of the working class to displace the capitalist system, with the dictatorship of the proletariat, abolishing the social relationshi
1934 Ontario general election
The Ontario general election, 1934 was the 19th general election held in the Province of Ontario, Canada. It was held on June 1934, to elect the 90 Members of the 19th Legislative Assembly of Ontario; the Ontario Liberal Party, led by Mitchell Hepburn, defeated the governing Ontario Conservative Party, led by George Stewart Henry. Hepburn was assisted by Harry Nixon's Progressive bloc of MLAs who ran in this election as Liberal-Progressives on the understanding that they would support a Hepburn led government. Nixon, became a senior cabinet minister in the Hepburn government; the Liberals won a majority in the Legislature, while the Conservatives lost four out of every five seats that they had won in the previous election. The legislature shrunk in size after the election of 1934 from 112 seats to 90; the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation, in its first provincial election, ran 37 candidates and won a seat in the Ontario Legislature for the first time with the election of Samuel Lawrence in Hamilton East.
The United Farmers of Ontario had affiliated with the CCF but disaffiliated prior to the 1934 election due to a row over suspected Communist infiltration of the party. Accordingly, two UFO nominated candidates, incumbent MLA Farquhar Oliver and Leslie Warner Oke, former MLA for Lambton East, ran as UFO candidates rather than with the CCF. Oliver would subsequently support the Hepburn government. Earl Hutchinson of Kenora was re-elected as a Labour MLA but resigns a month in order to allow Peter Heenan, a former Labour MLA in the riding, to contest Kenora in a by-election as a Liberal so that he could be appointed to Cabinet. Hutchinson is subsequently appointed vice-chairman of the Workmen's Compensation Board. Note: * Party did not nominate candidates. ** 4 Progressives and 1 Liberal-Progressive were elected in 1929. In the 1934 election, Progressive leader Harry Nixon led the party into a coalition with the Liberals under the Liberal-Progressive label. While there are three more Liberal-Progressives in 1934 than in 1929 there was a net loss of one seat if one adds in the Progressives elected in 1929.
Politics of Ontario List of Ontario political parties Premier of Ontario Leader of the Opposition
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border, its capital is Ottawa, its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra, its population is urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons. Various indigenous peoples have inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years prior to European colonization. Beginning in the 16th century and French expeditions explored, settled, along the Atlantic coast.
As a consequence of various armed conflicts, France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces; this began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament. Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, with Elizabeth II as its queen and a prime minister who serves as the chair of the federal cabinet and head of government; the country is a realm within the Commonwealth of Nations, a member of the Francophonie and bilingual at the federal level. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, education.
It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Canada's long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture. A developed country, Canada has the sixteenth-highest nominal per capita income globally as well as the twelfth-highest ranking in the Human Development Index, its advanced economy is the tenth-largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks. Canada is part of several major international and intergovernmental institutions or groupings including the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the G7, the Group of Ten, the G20, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. While a variety of theories have been postulated for the etymological origins of Canada, the name is now accepted as coming from the St. Lawrence Iroquoian word kanata, meaning "village" or "settlement".
In 1535, indigenous inhabitants of the present-day Quebec City region used the word to direct French explorer Jacques Cartier to the village of Stadacona. Cartier used the word Canada to refer not only to that particular village but to the entire area subject to Donnacona. From the 16th to the early 18th century "Canada" referred to the part of New France that lay along the Saint Lawrence River. In 1791, the area became two British colonies called Upper Canada and Lower Canada collectively named the Canadas. Upon Confederation in 1867, Canada was adopted as the legal name for the new country at the London Conference, the word Dominion was conferred as the country's title. By the 1950s, the term Dominion of Canada was no longer used by the United Kingdom, which considered Canada a "Realm of the Commonwealth"; the government of Louis St. Laurent ended the practice of using'Dominion' in the Statutes of Canada in 1951. In 1982, the passage of the Canada Act, bringing the Constitution of Canada under Canadian control, referred only to Canada, that year the name of the national holiday was changed from Dominion Day to Canada Day.
The term Dominion was used to distinguish the federal government from the provinces, though after the Second World War the term federal had replaced dominion. Indigenous peoples in present-day Canada include the First Nations, Métis, the last being a mixed-blood people who originated in the mid-17th century when First Nations and Inuit people married European settlers; the term "Aboriginal" as a collective noun is a specific term of art used in some legal documents, including the Constitution Act 1982. The first inhabitants of North America are hypothesized to have migrated from Siberia by way of the Bering land bridge and arrived at least 14,000 years ago; the Paleo-Indian archeological sites at Old Crow Flats and Bluefish Caves are two of the oldest sites of human habitation in Canada. The characteristics of Canadian indigenous societies included permanent settlements, complex societal hierarchies, trading networks; some of these cultures had collapsed by the time European explorers arrived in the late 15th and early 16th centuries and have only been discovered through archeological investigations.
The indigenous population at the time of the first European settlements is estimated to have been between 200,000
Ontario New Democratic Party
The Ontario New Democratic Party is a social-democratic political party in Ontario, Canada. The Ontario NDP, led by Andrea Horwath since March 2009 forms the Official Opposition in Ontario following the 2018 general election, it is a provincial section of the federal New Democratic Party. It was formed in October 1961 from the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation and the Ontario Federation of Labour. For many years, the Ontario NDP was the most successful provincial NDP branch outside the national party's western heartland, it had its first breakthrough under its first leader, Donald C. MacDonald in the 1967 provincial election, when the party elected 20 Members of Provincial Parliament to the Ontario Legislative Assembly. After the 1970 leadership convention, Stephen Lewis became leader, guided the party to Official Opposition status in 1975, the first time since the Ontario CCF did it twice in the 1940s. After the party's disappointing performance in the 1977 provincial election, that included losing second party status, Lewis stepped down and Michael Cassidy was elected leader in 1978.
Cassidy led the party through the 1981 election. The party did poorly again, Cassidy resigned. In 1982, Bob Rae was elected leader. Under his leadership, in 1985, the party held the balance-of-power with the signing of an accord with the newly elected Liberal minority government. After the 1987 Ontario general election, the ONDP became the Official Opposition again; the 1990 Ontario general election produced the ONDP's breakthrough first government in 1990. The victory produced the first NDP provincial government east of Manitoba, but it took power just when Canada's economy was in a recession, as a result of unpopular economic policies it was defeated in 1995. Rae stepped down as leader in 1996. Howard Hampton was elected leader in at the 1996 Hamilton convention, led the party through three elections. Hampton's period as leader saw the ONDP lose official party status twice: after the 1999 and 2003 elections, he was able to regain party status the first time after the governing Progressive Conservatives revised party status requirements in accordance with that election's reduction in the number of seats in the legislature, the second time after winning a string of by-elections in the mid-2000s.
The party maintained party status after the 2007 Ontario general election and he stepped down as leader in 2009. Andrea Horwath replaced him after she was elected leader at the 2009 leadership convention in Hamilton. Under her leadership in the 2011 Ontario general election, the party elected 17 MPPs to the legislature and in the 2014 Ontario general election, the party elected 21 MPPs. Under Horwath, the party achieved its second highest seat count when it formed the Official Opposition with 40 MPPs after the 2018 Ontario general election; the NDP's predecessor, the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation, was a democratic socialist political party, founded in 1932. The Ontario CCF in turn was indirectly the successor to the 1919–23 United Farmers of Ontario–Labour coalition that formed the government in Ontario under Ernest C. Drury; as the Ontario Co-operative Commonwealth Federation under Ted Jolliffe as their first leader, the party nearly won the 1943 provincial election, winning 34 seats and forming the official opposition for the first time.
Two-years they would be reduced to 8 seats. The final glory for the Ontario CCF came in the 1948 provincial election, when party elected 21 MPPs, again formed the official opposition, they were able to defeat Premier George A. Drew in his own constituency, when the CCF's Bill Temple won in High Park though the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario won another majority government; the breaking point for the Ontario CCF came in 1951. They were reduced to two MPP's in that year's provincial election, never recovered. In the two remaining elections while it existed, the party never had more than five members in the legislature. Jolliffe resigned as leader in 1953. Donald C. MacDonald became leader in 1953, spent the next fifteen years rebuilding the party, from two seats when he took over the party's helm, to ten times that number when he stepped down in 1970. Delegates from the Ontario CCF, delegates from affiliated union locals, delegates from New Party Clubs took part in the founding convention of the New Democratic Party of Ontario held in Niagara Falls at the Sheraton Brock hotel from 7–9 October 1961 and elected MacDonald as their leader.
The Ontario CCF Council ceased to exist formally on Sunday, 8 October 1961, when the newly elected NDP executive took over. The Ontario NDP picked up seats through the 1960s, it achieved a breakthrough in the 1967 provincial election, when its popular vote rose from 15% to 26%. The party increased its presence in the legislature from 8 to 20 seats. In that election the party ran on the themes of the cost of living, tax distribution, education costs, Canadian unity, housing. Stephen Lewis took over the party's leadership in 1970, the NDP's popularity continued to grow. With the 1975 provincial election, the governing Progressive Conservative party was reduced to a minority government for the first time in thirty years; the charismatic and dynamic Lewis ran a strong election campaign that forced the Tories to promise to implement the NDP's rent control policies. The NDP overtook the Liberals to become the Official Opposition with 29 % of the vote. However, the Tories retained power as a minority government.
Hopes were high tha
Andrea Horwath, is a Canadian politician and community development coordinator, the Leader of the Official Opposition in Ontario and Leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party. She is a member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, representing the riding of Hamilton Centre, was chosen as the party's leader at its 2009 leadership convention, she is the first woman to lead the Ontario New Democratic Party, one of only three women to serve as leader of a political party with representation in the provincial legislature. Horwath was born and raised in Hamilton and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Labour Studies from McMaster University, she worked part-time as a waitress to pay her way through university. Her father Andrew, an ethnic Hungarian, had immigrated to Canada from Slovakia, worked on the assembly line at the Ford Motor Company plant in Oakville, Ontario, her mother, Diane, is of Irish descent. She worked with the Hamilton labour movement for several years and providing literacy, numeracy and ESL training for workers.
She subsequently got involved in the cooperative housing movement in Welland, became a community development coordinator for Hamilton's McQuesten Legal & Community Services, providing public legal education to groups working with tenants, injured workers and people with disabilities. In 1996 Horwath earned a certificate of achievement in anti-racism training, was an organizer of Hamilton's Days of Action campaign against provincial government cutbacks announced by Mike Harris; that year she received the Woman of the Year Award in Public Affairs from the Hamilton Status of Women Committee, in recognition of her work in the community. She dedicated her time and efforts toward the field of social housing, was subsequently awarded the Graham Emslie Award for Community Development in Housing by the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association, she lives in Hamilton with her son Julian. In a March 2011 interview with the Toronto Star, she spoke publicly for the first time about the breakup of her longtime relationship with Julian's father, Hamilton businessman Ben Leonetti.
Horwath had met Ben Leonetti in her university years, when she was working part-time as a waitress and he was a jazz musician. The two lived together for 25 years without getting married and split up in 2010. In the Canadian federal election of 1997, she was the NDP candidate against incumbent Liberal Stan Keyes in the riding of Hamilton West. Although unsuccessful, her second-place finish was a significant improvement on previous NDP efforts in the riding, gave her an increased level of prominence in the city. In 1997, she was elected to Hamilton City Council for Ward Two, outpolling two incumbents who had represented the area for more than 20 years, she emerged as a prominent voice for the political left in the city, was re-elected to council in 2000 and 2003. During her three terms as city councillor, she chaired the solid-waste-management committee and the municipal non-profit housing corporation. Horwath was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in a 2004 by-election in the then-extant provincial riding of Hamilton East, defeating Liberal candidate Ralph Agostino to succeed the deceased Liberal member Dominic Agostino, Ralph's brother.
Winning 63.6 per cent of the vote, up from the NDP's 29.4 per cent in that riding six months earlier, her landslide victory boosted the NDP's seat count over the threshold for official party status in the legislature, helped give the federal New Democratic Party a bounce in Hamilton that would continue into the federal election shortly thereafter. In the 2007 election, Horwath ran in the new riding of Hamilton Centre, due to redistricting that divided her former Hamilton East riding between Hamilton Centre and the new riding of Hamilton East—Stoney Creek. Horwath's new Hamilton Centre riding included half of her former riding as well as a portion of the former Hamilton West riding where she had run federally in 1997, it included her entire former city council ward. In the leadup to the campaign, Horwath was expected to face Hamilton West Liberal incumbent Judy Marsales. However, Marsales opted not to run for another term, Horwath defeated Liberal candidate Steve Ruddick on election day. On November 7, 2008, Horwath launched her campaign to win the party's leadership.
The leadership election was held March 6–8, 2009. Horwath led on the first two ballots, won on the third ballot with 60.4% of the vote defeating Peter Tabuns, Gilles Bisson and Michael Prue. The 2011 provincial election saw a rise in support for the NDP under Horwath's leadership; the party won more than 20% of the popular vote for the first time since 1995 and doubled its seats to elect 17 members of the legislature. The election resulted in the Liberal government of Dalton McGuinty being reduced to a minority government with the NDP holding the balance of power. In April 2012, Horwath passed a leadership review at the party's convention with 76% support. In the 2014 provincial election, the NDP was able to maintain its seat count of 21 at dissolution despite the loss of three seats in Toronto, but lost the balance of power when the Liberals took a majority win in the election. Horwath has faced criticism from some party members and progressives for running a populist campaign which they described as right-wing.
Despite criticism of her leadership from some quarters, Horwath received a increased level of support, 77%, at the party's post-election convention held on November 15. Horwath ran in her third election as NDP leader against the Liberal government led by Kathleen Wynne and a Progressive
Samuel Lawrence was a Canadian politician and trade unionist. Lawrence was born in Somerset and went to work in a quarry at the age of 12 and became a shop steward in the Operative Stonemasons' Union at the age of 18, he entered politics. Known as "Mr. Labour", Sam Lawrence was an alderman and the Mayor of Hamilton from 1944 to 1949, he was President of the Stone Cutters' Union, Vice-President of the Hamilton Trades and Labour Council, leader of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation Party in the Ontario legislature as well as Ontario CCF president in the early 1940s Born in the Somerset village of Norton-sub-Hamdon to William Lawrence and Ann Geard on 16 August 1879, Sam was the fourth child in a family of 5 boys and 5 girls and he attended school from the age of 3 to 10. His father, who Sam described as a'radical liberal', was a stonemason, Sam gave him credit for the position he took in the Labour movement. At the age of 12, Lawrence was working twelve hours a day, from six to six, was apprenticed to a stonemason at 13.
He had served half his time when his father became the foreman at Arundel Castle, the principal seat of the Duke of Norfolk. Lawrence went to London at 17 and joined the Friendly Society of Operative Stonemasons of England and Wales in Battersea and was shop steward at the age of 18. Whilst serving in the Coldstream Guards during the Boer War, a young recruit by name of Knobby Taylor loaned Lawrence "Looking Backward" by Edward Bellamy. Lawrence's experiences in the Boer War and Bellamy's American Utopian novel led to him becoming a socialist. In 1906, the 27-year-old trade unionist and war veteran stood in an abortive election campaign for the Battersea Borough Council and, six years decided to follow three of his brothers and one sister who had gone to Canada. Lawrence immigrated to Canada, settling in Hamilton, Ontario with his family in 1912, he joined the Journeymen Stonecutters' Association of North America and found work as a stonemason. He became involved in the local labour movement and was elected to Hamilton, Ontario City Council as an Independent Labour Party alderman in 1922.
He ran as a Labour candidate in the 1925 federal election but lost his bid for a seat in the House of Commons of Canada, coming in second. He remained on city council and was elected to Hamilton's Board of Control in 1929, retaining his seat until 1934 when he was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as the Member of the Legislative Assembly for Hamilton East, the first Co-operative Commonwealth Federation MLA elected in Ontario, he was the only CCFer elected in the 1934 election, was defeated in his bid for re-election in the 1937 election. He was elected Ontario CCF president in 1941, served as Mayor of Hamilton from 1944 to 1949 leading a CCF slate in that city. Lawrence served for a time as president of the local Industrial Union Council, subsequently regained his seat on the Board of Control and kept it for six years, he was elected the first Labour mayor of Hamilton in the 1944 municipal election and was re-elected mayor annually until his retirement from the office in 1949.
During his tenure as mayor, the city went through the divisive 85-day Stelco strike of 1946. The strike was the union's first, its victory established the United Steel Workers of America as a major force in Canada, it helped establish the right of Canadian workers to collective bargaining. Lawrence was publicly supportive of the strike, led a 10,000-person march from Woodlawns Park to the gates of Stelco. Despite pressure from the federal and provincial governments, he refused to call in police or the military against the illegal strike, thus helped ensure its victory; when the federal government sent the army in, Lawrence angrily stated that "the government was acting as the nation's chief strike breaker."After stepping down as mayor in 1949, Lawrence continued on the Board of Control for six years until his retirement from politics. Sam Lawrence Park can be found on the western-end of Concession Street. Prior to 1944, this property was the Webb Quarry. In February 1944, The City of Hamilton was given 3 acres of land for park use by Thomas Hambly Ross, MP, his wife Olive.
The park was named Ross Park renamed Patton Park in 1946, in honour of captain John MacMillan Stevenson Patton, a Hamiltonian who risked his life during World War II by detonating an unexploded bomb. For this exploit. In 1960, the park was renamed to honour Sam Lawrence. During 1990 to 1994, Sam Lawrence Park underwent a major upgrading that included repairing the stone walls, installing new walkways, site lighting, site furniture, the redevelopment of the major rock gardens; when the Workers Arts and Heritage Centre purchased the historic Custom House on Stuart Street in the north end of Hamilton in 1996, they began hosting an annual Sam Lawrence Dinner after their November AGM
Ontario is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada and is located in east-central Canada. It is Canada's most populous province accounting for 38.3 percent of the country's population, is the second-largest province in total area. Ontario is fourth-largest jurisdiction in total area when the territories of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are included, it is home to the nation's capital city and the nation's most populous city, Ontario's provincial capital. Ontario is bordered by the province of Manitoba to the west, Hudson Bay and James Bay to the north, Quebec to the east and northeast, to the south by the U. S. states of Minnesota, Ohio and New York. All of Ontario's 2,700 km border with the United States follows inland waterways: from the west at Lake of the Woods, eastward along the major rivers and lakes of the Great Lakes/Saint Lawrence River drainage system; these are the Rainy River, the Pigeon River, Lake Superior, the St. Marys River, Lake Huron, the St. Clair River, Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, Lake Erie, the Niagara River, Lake Ontario and along the St. Lawrence River from Kingston, Ontario, to the Quebec boundary just east of Cornwall, Ontario.
There is only about 1 km of land border made up of portages including Height of Land Portage on the Minnesota border. Ontario is sometimes conceptually divided into Northern Ontario and Southern Ontario; the great majority of Ontario's population and arable land is in the south. In contrast, the larger, northern part of Ontario is sparsely populated with cold winters and heavy forestation; the province is named after Lake Ontario, a term thought to be derived from Ontarí:io, a Huron word meaning "great lake", or skanadario, which means "beautiful water" in the Iroquoian languages. Ontario has about 250,000 freshwater lakes; the province consists of three main geographical regions: The thinly populated Canadian Shield in the northwestern and central portions, which comprises over half the land area of Ontario. Although this area does not support agriculture, it is rich in minerals and in part covered by the Central and Midwestern Canadian Shield forests, studded with lakes and rivers. Northern Ontario is subdivided into two sub-regions: Northeastern Ontario.
The unpopulated Hudson Bay Lowlands in the extreme north and northeast swampy and sparsely forested. Southern Ontario, further sub-divided into four regions. Despite the absence of any mountainous terrain in the province, there are large areas of uplands within the Canadian Shield which traverses the province from northwest to southeast and above the Niagara Escarpment which crosses the south; the highest point is Ishpatina Ridge at 693 metres above sea level in Temagami, Northeastern Ontario. In the south, elevations of over 500 m are surpassed near Collingwood, above the Blue Mountains in the Dundalk Highlands and in hilltops near the Madawaska River in Renfrew County; the Carolinian forest zone covers most of the southwestern region of the province. The temperate and fertile Great Lakes-Saint Lawrence Valley in the south is part of the Eastern Great Lakes lowland forests ecoregion where the forest has now been replaced by agriculture and urban development. A well-known geographic feature is part of the Niagara Escarpment.
The Saint Lawrence Seaway allows navigation to and from the Atlantic Ocean as far inland as Thunder Bay in Northwestern Ontario. Northern Ontario occupies 87 percent of the surface area of the province. Point Pelee is a peninsula of Lake Erie in southwestern Ontario, the southernmost extent of Canada's mainland. Pelee Island and Middle Island in Lake Erie extend farther. All are south of 42°N – farther south than the northern border of California; the climate of Ontario varies by location. It is affected by three air sources: cold, arctic air from the north; the effects of these major air masses on temperature and precipitation depend on latitude, proximity to major bodies of water and to a small extent, terrain relief. In general, most of Ontario's climate is classified as humid continental. Ontario has three main climatic regions; the surrounding Great Lakes influence the climatic region of southern Ontario. During the fall and winter months, heat stored from the lakes is released, moderating the climate near the shores of the lakes.
This gives some parts of southern Ontario milder winters than mid-continental areas at lower latitudes. Parts of Southwestern Ontario have a moderate humid continental climate, similar to that of the inland Mid-Atlantic states and the Great Lakes portion of the Midwestern United States; the region has warm to cold winters. Annual precipitation is well distributed throughout the year. Most of this region lies in the lee of the Great Lakes. In December 2010, the snowbelt set a new record when it was h