Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

May 15, 2017 13:01 ET

CUPE to take on proposed infrastructure privatization bank at Finance and Transport committees

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 15, 2017) - Representatives of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) will be on Parliament Hill on Tuesday, taking on the government's proposed Canada Infrastructure Bank embedded in its omnibus budget Bill C-44.

CUPE has been at the forefront of growing national opposition to the proposed infrastructure bank, detailing how the Liberal government's plan will lead to increased costs, secret deal-making, and a gamble of public money for private benefit.

CUPE National Economist Toby Sanger will present at the House of Commons Finance committee, while Senior Researcher Sarah Ryan will present to the Commons Transport committee. In March, research by Sanger showed that the government's proposal could almost double the public cost of building infrastructure due to high private financing rates. As proposed, the bank will lead to widespread privatization of public infrastructure, and significant increases in tolls and user fees for Canadians.

"The Liberals promised low-cost financing for desperately needed infrastructure. They promised transparency in government, and to not use omnibus bills," said Sanger. "But they're breaking all three of those promises now. That they will only allow one day of public hearings at the House committee on this plan to roll the dice on $35 billion of public money really adds insult to injury."

Sanger's research also shows the Liberal government could create a public infrastructure bank that would keep costs low and keep public infrastructure public, just as they had promised.

CUPE is Canada's largest labour union, representing 643,000 Canadians working across sectors in every province.

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