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Limited options on poll promises

Posted in Featured, View Point

Published on September 20, 2021 with No Comments

Canadians have just 4 days to go to the polls and the political parties have done their best to impress the voters with whatever unlimited promises they could make. There are certain core areas that have always been dear to majority of  Canadians.

Canadians are concerned about the handling of pandemic and hence about on the system for health care.  Stressing the need for vaccine mandates to help bolster economic recovery, the Liberals have promised a $1-billion fund to help provinces implement vaccine passport systems. Trudeau has also committed to creating better standards for long-term care and dedicate funding to the provinces to reduce health care wait times and hire more health workers. But at the same time, Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau plans to have mandatory vaccination requirements to board a plane, train or cruise ship. On the other hand, the Conservatives under Leader Erin O’Toole plan to  pandemic plan. They tend to focus on pandemic preparedness in order to shore up Canada’s vaccine production capacity and beef up PPE stockpiles. The Conservatives also plan to prioritize the signing of contracts for booster shots. They’re also planning to increase provincial transfers for mental health care and addiction services. While Trudeau appears to have a micro plant ready for pandemic, Conservatives are still at Macro levels. However, the promises put forth by NDP, could make a larger impact on the voters as Jagmeet Singh has promised to implement universal pharmacare, starting in 2022. He has proposed to negotiate prices with pharmaceutical companies and work with the provinces to make prescription drugs free. He has projected that an average family would save $ 550 per year. These figures are going to impress the voters and create an impression that the promises by NDP is part of a pledge to create national plans for dental and mental health care, which he has promised in the last elections. Not to be left behind, though it has it base only in Quebec, Bloc Quebecois has promised that if elected it would increase health transfers to provinces and territories, so the federal government covers at least 35 per cent of all health-care spending.

Another important aspect that most of the Canadians want the elected governments to address is Economy. While Conservatives plan to restore jobs lost during the pandemic, including a pledge to pay up to 50 per cent of new hires’ salaries after the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy ends; Liberals intent to restore jobs to pre-pandemic levels, extend the Canada Recovery Hiring program, which allows employers to increase wages and hours or to hire more staff. To counter Liberals, Conservatives have promised to launch a ‘Super EI’ program that would temporarily provide 75 per cent of salary instead of the current 55 per cent when a province goes into a recession. Considering the worst hit industries during pandemic has been tourism; Liberals have said that if elected if would provide tourism industry with temporary wage and rent support of up to 75 per cent to help them get through the winter months. NDP has put up an elaborate plan that includes creating more than one million jobs to help boost the country’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and provide new access to training and education through its Workers and Development and Opportunities Fund, in collaboration with the provinces. NDP leader Jagmeet Singh has announced plans to allow workers who quit their jobs to go to school to qualify for EI benefits. The NDP say they will require large employers to spend at least one per cent of payroll on training for their employees annually.

Child care being another area of concern for a majority of Canadians. The plan put by Conservatives rejects the Liberals’ vision for a national universal child-care system. Rather it has proposed a generous child-care tax credit for lower income families.  In line with the Liberals’ plan, the NDP are pledging $10-a-day universal child care program.

Parties have put their pledges on  a platter and the voters will be soon deciding which one to pick.

 

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