Seniors in Canada have faced difficult challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to North Island-Powell River MP Rachel Blaney.
In a media release, Blaney stated that now, with the pandemic still ongoing and the cost of living rising, the Liberal government is turning its back on the most vulnerable seniors by cutting the guaranteed income supplement (GIS) that they rely on to pay their bills and buy groceries.
“New Democrats know that’s not right and are fighting back,” stated Blaney.
Critic for employment and workforce development Daniel Blaikie (Elmwood Transcona) and Blaney sent a letter requesting an emergency debate on these cuts that are hurting seniors.
“There are 90,000 seniors in Canada who are now at risk of homelessness and hunger looking for answers from the government that promised to have their back, but instead cut their supports,” stated Blaney. “The Liberal government cannot punish some of the most vulnerable members of our community for taking the help they needed. We are calling for an emergency debate so we can come together and urgently find a solution to this problem.”
In August, the NDP sent a letter to the Liberal government alerting them to this problem, according to the release, and instead of finding a solution, the government turned its back on seniors and called a federal election. In the four months since New Democrats brought this issue to their attention, the Liberals have made no progress and seniors have become even more desperate, according to the NDP.
“While Justin Trudeau was more than happy to hand out millions in subsidies to big corporations during the pandemic with no strings attached, he is punishing seniors who took the benefits they qualified for. How does that make any sense?” asked Blaikie. “We have repeatedly asked the Liberal government to resolve the issue, but they have failed to act. Our seniors cannot afford to wait any longer.”
The release stated that the NDP is committed to pushing the government on this issue until a solution is found.