Ottawa, ON – Today, the Hon. Erin O’Toole, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives, released his plan to lift up Canadians by doubling the Canada Workers Benefit. “Canadians are struggling, and for too long our most vulnerable workers have been left behind without the proper support to provide for themselves and their families,” said O’Toole. “Canada’s Conservatives believe that it’s time to make work pay and help those most in need.” Canada’s Recovery Plan will double the Canada Workers Benefit up to a maximum of $2,800 for individuals or $5,000 for families, paying it as a quarterly direct deposit rather than a tax refund at year-end. This will help 3.5 million families pay the bills and put food on the table. For someone earning between $12,000 and $28,000 per year, it represents a $1/hour raise. A Conservative government will also double the disability supplement from $713 to $1,500, helping almost 90,000 workers with disabilities. “Increasing this benefit and delivering it every three months will make a huge difference in the lives of low-income workers and their families, including those who are earning minimum wage,” O’Toole said. “Together, we can secure the future for working Canadians.” If you don’t care about lifting up working Canadians, you have three parties to choose from in this election. If you do, then there is only one choice – Erin O’Toole and Canada’s Conservatives.
The State of Canadian Infrastructure The centrepiece of Justin Trudeau’s 2015 campaign was his promise to invest $180 billion over 12 years in infrastructure. However, the Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) found there was no additional infrastructure built in Canada over and above what would have otherwise been built. In fact, the Liberals allowed one-third of the infrastructure funding for their Investing in Canada Plan for 2016-2019 to sit unused. The PBO found that the infrastructure plan touted by the Liberals “does not exist.” The Canadian Infrastructure Bank (CIB) was also a key platform pledge for Justin Trudeau in 2015, promising that it would be operational by 2017 with a clear mission to invest $35 billion of federal funding in revenue-generating infrastructure projects. The PBO also found the CIB has had a limited impact since it was not successful in securing private investment and has failed to invest the billions of dollars set aside for its mandate. To date, the CIB has invested only $4.3 billion of its $35 billion budget. In fact, the CIB has made more headlines for the exorbitant bonuses it has paid its executives than for actual project investments. Unleashing Canada’s Infrastructure Spending Canada’s Conservatives will refocus Canada’s infrastructure spending on getting money out the door for shovel-ready projects. Through Canada’s Recovery Plan, Canada’s Conservatives will immediately invest in key projects that will create jobs, cut commute times, improve quality of life for Canadians, and reduce emissions. A Conservative government will make historic investments in nationally significant projects across the country, such as the SkyTrain extension to Langley (British Columbia), Ontario’s GTA transit plan, Quebec City’s Third Link (Quebec), the Calgary Green Line (Alberta) and VIA Rail’s high-frequency rail project. Canada’s Conservatives will also ensure that our infrastructure spending benefits Canadian workers by requiring that equipment and materials for federally funded infrastructure projects be purchased from Canadian companies, or from countries where there is a mutual agreement to allow workers to supply each other’s infrastructure projects. Supporting Northern Infrastructure Conservatives realize that infrastructure spending is not only needed in our urban centres, but also in our northern and rural areas. Canadians from coast to coast to coast rely on infrastructure like roads, bridges, and ports to get around, including ensuring these projects can weather the harsher conditions in Northern Canada. A Conservative government will ensure that the territories receive their fair share of infrastructure funding by reserving a funding envelope for them that accounts for the high construction costs and weather conditions in the North. Conservatives will address the Northern infrastructure gap in housing, telecommunications, transportation, energy, and climate change preparedness. Connecting more communities concurrently to the power grid, road and broadband networks will also reduce reliance on diesel fuels and improve the quality of life for residents in these communities. The Conservative plan for northern infrastructure includes: -- The Grays Bay Port and Road Project -- The Kivalliq Hydro-Fibre Line -- Completing the Tuktoyaktuk road and port -- A large-scale project to provide clean power to the Yukon, developed in partnership with the Government of the Yukon Bridging the Digital Divide The Trudeau government set up eight different federal funding programs for broadband, including the Universal Broadband Fund, Connect to Innovate, Connecting Canadians, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) Broadband Fund, rural and northern economic development funds, and funding available through the Canada Infrastructure Bank. The Liberals made numerous big-dollar broadband announcements, but like the rest of their infrastructure announcements, few projects have been funded and built as they don’t coordinate with other levels of government, or even among themselves. They also require private sector companies to jump through many regulatory hoops to get projects built. Some rural broadband projects take three to five years to get approved. Canada’s Conservatives are committed to connecting all of Canada to high-speed Internet by 2025. A Conservative government will consolidate all rural broadband programs and work with telecommunications companies to immediately begin a massive investment in rural broadband access and increased network capacity. Canada’s Conservatives will also work closely with the provinces to coordinate federal investments and ensure money goes out the door to shovel-ready projects.
Corner Brook, NL – Today, the Hon. Erin O’Toole, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives, released his plan to increase EI benefits for seriously ill workers from 26 to 52 weeks. “Canadian workers should know we have their backs if they become seriously ill,” said O’Toole. “But all too often, workers see their EI run out after 26 weeks while battling life-threatening diseases like cancer. Canadian workers and their families deserve better. It is time for the government to stand up for workers and their health.” With Canada’s Recovery Plan, Canada’s Conservatives will ensure that workers who need to take sick leave receive the support they need to recover and support their families by increasing EI sickness benefits from 26 weeks to 52 weeks for those suffering from a serious illness. “You can’t have a healthy economy without healthy workers. Canada’s Conservatives have a plan to put workers at the front of the country’s recovery and get the economy back on track,” O’Toole said. “Together, we can secure the future.”
Ottawa, ON – Today, the Hon. Erin O’Toole, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives, introduced his plan to protect gig economy workers by ensuring their access to employment insurance (EI) benefits. “Millions of Canadians don’t qualify for EI because they’re on contract or only have temporary work,” O’Toole said. “So when a crisis like COVID-19 hit, these workers had no safety net. A Conservative government will provide security to gig economy workers.” With Canada’s Recovery Plan, Canada’s Conservatives will require gig economy companies to make contributions equivalent to the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and EI premiums into a new, portable Employee Savings Account every time they pay their workers. The money will grow tax-free and can be used to pay CPP premiums or accumulate savings that will be withdrawn by the worker when they need it. “The Canadian workplace has changed and the support Canada provides to workers must change as well,” said O’Toole. “Only Canada’s Conservatives have a plan to secure the future for Canadian workers.”
Ottawa, ON – Today, the Hon. Erin O’Toole, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives, released his plan to secure pensions for Canadian workers. “Canadian workers who have paid into a pension plan on every paycheque should be able to rely on it being there when they retire,” said O’Toole. “But far too often, we have seen workers, through no fault of their own, forced to take big cuts to their pensions when the company they worked for goes bankrupt. As Prime Minister, I will stand up for workers and introduce the necessary measures to protect hard-earned pensions.” As part of Canada’s Recovery Plan, a Conservative government will change the law so that when a company goes bankrupt or is being restructured, workers come first – not corporate elites. Canada’s Conservatives will also improve the security of workers’ pensions by: Preventing executives from paying themselves bonuses while managing a company going through restructuring unless the pension plan is fully funded. No longer forcing underfunded pension plans to be converted to annuities, a practice where the financial assets are sold and exchanged for an insurance product to reduce risks and offer fixed payments to pensioners. Companies typically fail in the midst of a recession when markets are depressed, and as a result, this practice currently locks in losses and means workers receive less money. Requiring companies to be more transparent with their employees by mandating they report the funding status of their pension plans. “If you don’t care about standing up for Canadian workers, you have three parties to choose from in this election,” O’Toole said. “If you do, then there is only one choice – Canada’s Conservatives.”
Ottawa, ON – Today, the Hon. Erin O’Toole, Leader of Canada’s Conservatives, released his plan to ensure the needs of Canadian workers are being addressed by having a seat on the boards of directors. “Too many decisions at major corporations are being made without the people who helped build the company – the workers – at the table,” said O’Toole. “Canada’s Recovery Plan will give workers a real voice within these companies to support the long-term success of their employer, and ultimately, their ability to make a living.” To ensure workers’ needs are heard at the very top, an O’Toole government will require federally regulated employers with over 1,000 employees or $100 million in annual revenue to include worker representation on their boards of directors. Federally regulated sectors include aerospace, trucking, marine shipping, rail, oil and gas, mining, telecommunications, and banking. Together, these sectors employ hundreds of thousands of Canadian workers across the country. “As we work toward recovery, we have an opportunity to ensure Canadian workers go back to better jobs,” said O’Toole. “Canada’s Recovery Plan will stand up for workers and deliver jobs for all Canadians.” If you don’t care about getting Canadians back to work in every sector and every region of the country, you have three parties to choose from in this election. If you do, then there is only one choice – Erin O’Toole and Canada’s Conservatives.