Week one of the election campaign
Published: September 14, 2008
Source: Canadian Labour Congress
An election campaign is no time to discuss serious issues: that
famous line from the 1993 federal election seemed, to a large
extent, the main truth of the first week of the 2008 federal
election campaign. Watching the reports from the hustings, Canadian
working families are, with reason, asking themselves the most
political question of all: what’s in it for us?
Most of the week was consumed about who would be allowed to
participate in the national televised debates and on whether the party
ads were in good taste or honest: not about what needs to be debated or
what advertised promises would respond to our needs.
finally, toward the end of the week, the media got it right and jobs,
the economy and the price of gasoline merited some coverage, some of the
fog started to lift...
On a day when Ford announced another 500 layoffs in the auto
industry, incumbent Prime Minister Harper shrugged his shoulders and
announced the government couldn't guarantee workers their jobs and the
finance minister didn't back down from his earlier statements that
business should not invest in Ontario until its government dropped its
corporate tax rate to 10%.
What is the Conservative plan to create jobs? More tax cuts that benefit
the rich and the big corporations. Change to immigration rules to bring
more skilled labour from abroad – probably more temporary foreign
workers who receive little protection under our laws thus get treated as
expendable by their employers. They offer no plan so far to improve EI
rules so those losing their jobs now can have decent income support for
retraining. And no changes to the temporary foreign worker program to
halt the abuse of foreign-trained workers who are only welcome to remain
in Canada at the whim of their employer.
The Liberals would spend $1 billion to promote targeted investments in
In contrast, the NDP announced clear goals and targets. They propose to
create 40,000 new manufacturing jobs by cancelling $8 billion in
corporate tax cuts, and create a green jobs training fund to retrain
laid off workers.
Working families want to hear more. So much of our future, of our
children’s future, hinges on the outcome of this debate.
Workers need to know who's on their side.
stands up and represents Canadian workers' interests in the house of
parliament? Well our MP's voted on many issues this past session and now
it's time to find out who voted for workers and who voted against!