As the winter Parliamentary sitting kicks into full gear this week, our Liberal Caucus is focused and energized to continue working on behalf of Canadian families for a safer, more equitable, greener and more prosperous future for all. These core principles will further shape our objectives as we build on accomplishments from the fall sitting.
Canadians can expect another Conservative budget in the coming weeks, and in light of the tepid economic growth we’ve experienced during the last seven years, I recently took the opportunity to share our ideas for the budget with Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty.
A prime indicator of this economic inertia is the persistent high unemployment in Canada; the Liberal Party is calling on this government to commit to making the investments necessary to bring our national unemployment down to 6.5% by next year. Equally important are initiatives to control and reduce alarming income inequality, as highlighted again this week in a report from Statistics Canada.
Supporting the social programs that seniors and families rely on everyday will remain a priority for Liberals, along with pushing strongly for the Harper Conservatives to abandon their latest Employment Insurance Premium hikes on Canadians’ paychecks. This must all the while be balanced with efforts to curtail the federal debt and deficits that have spiraled out of control under their management.
Rest assured that our caucus will specifically hold the Conservatives to account on the necessity to repair the federal government’s broken relationship with Aboriginal Peoples. There is an urgent need for a collaborative approach where both parties come to the table as equals, and these aspirations have visibly manifested themselves in recent months. Furthermore, we will be advocating that the government embrace the reasonable steps outlined in cooperation with aboriginal leaders on January 11th.
Whether it is scrutinizing Conservative spending or supporting investment in our provinces and municipalities, Liberal MPs and Senators will push for tangible results that benefit Canadians from all regions.
I will be working hard to advance Liberal values – your ideals – in the months ahead. And, of course, our Party’s leadership campaign is now in full swing. There is much we can all look forward to with anticipation.