At a campaign stop in St. John’s this morning, the Liberal Party made a series of policy announcements that they say will benefit Canadian families.
Leader Justin Trudeau says, the federal Liberals, if re-elected, would work to establish guaranteed paid family leave within the first year of its mandate.
The program would make it so “that parents who don’t qualify for paid leave through Employment Insurance or don’t get enough, because they’re between jobs, earn little, or haven’t worked enough hours, will receive a guaranteed income during the first year of their child’s life.”
Trudeau also announced a 15 per cent increase to the Canadian Child Benefit for children under the age of one, giving $1,000 more to families at a time when child-raising costs are highest; a plan to make maternity and parental benefits tax-free; and a 15-week leave for adoptive parents to allow them the same benefits as non-adoptive parents.
“Every parent knows that raising kids is expensive – especially in that first year,” Trudeau stated in a release. “With everything else on their plates, the last thing new parents need to worry about is making ends meet. That’s why we’ll be there for families — so they can be there for their kids.”
CPC and NDP critical of Liberals
Prior to the press conference and media availability at Day Break Child Centre in the east end of the city, both the Conservative Party of Canada and the federal NDP released their own news releases.
A joint statement from CPC candidates Matthew Chapman (Avalon), Terry Martin (St. John’s South-Mount Pearl), Joedy Wall (St. John’s East), claims Trudeau and the Liberals have taken this province for granted and that the seven MPs in Ottawa have failed to stand up for the people of the province.
“Instead, they have stood silently by as Trudeau’s policies have made life more expensive for families, seniors and small business owners.”
The candidates accuse Trudeau of making things harder on middle-class Canadians, ignoring concerns of “fishermen” and supporting anti-energy legislation. A Conservative government led by Andrew Scheer, they say, will help the province and its people “achieve a more prosperous future.”
“This includes scrapping Bill C-69, championing responsible resource development and a national energy corridor, appointing an (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) minister who is actually from the region and balancing the budget so we can lower taxes.”
The NDP release, coming from the camp of St. John’s East candidate Jack Harris, accuses the Liberals of having time to meet with lobbyists for pharmaceutical and insurance companies, “but refused to follow through on an the universal pharmacare plan that Newfoundlanders and Labradorians need.”
On childcare, the NDP pointed out that “the Liberals first promised affordable childcare in 1993 — the year Groundhog Day was release,” referring to the Bill Murray classic.
The release suggests party leader Jagmeet Singh and Harris will boost the economy, delivery on universal pharmacare and make like more affordable for NL families.
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