Canadian Labour Congress

Canadian Labour Congress

May 17, 2005 13:37 ET

Pass the Budget: Georgetti

Labour leader says people's priorities must come before priorities of political parties Attention: Assignment Editor, Business/Financial Editor, News Editor, World News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor OTTAWA--(CCNMatthews - May 17, 2005) - The President of Canada's largest labour organization says the new budget is too important to working people to be lost because of the political games being played in Ottawa this week.

Ken Georgetti, President of the Canadian Labour Congress also warns that politicians who put party politics ahead of people and their families might want to think again before provoking an early election.

"Conservative and Bloc members of parliament who represent large working class communities should think twice about defeating this new budget just because they think their parties can win a few more seats. Putting politics before people might win votes in parliament, but it's a sure way to lose votes back home," says Georgetti.

Defeating the new budget guarantees a wasted parliament and a lost year for Canadian working citizens and their priorities. Municipalities counting on federal dollars to rebuild crumbling infrastructures would be thrown into turmoil, forcing them to delay projects or make up for the lost federal dollars by raising local taxes. Working families looking forward to affordable child care would be disappointed and pensions would go another year at risk of being lost to corporate bankruptcy.

"Higher property taxes or jobs lost due to delays in improvements to local infrastructure or construction of affordable housing, the loss of affordable child care or lower tuition, another year without action on our Kyoto promises and continued risk to people's pensions is a high price for working people to pay just because one or two political parties decide it's time to go 'all in'," says Georgetti.

Other labour-backed initiatives at risk, if the government falls this week, include long overdue reforms of Employment Insurance, investments in workplace skills and literacy, modernization of the Canada Labour Code, and a landmark investment towards a national anti-racism strategy.

While it's frustrating for organizations like the Canadian Labour Congress to see their hard-fought priorities go down the tubes after a year of work and a year of promises from all political parties, Georgetti says it's devastating for the people those priorities are all about.

The Canadian Labour Congress, the national voice of the labour movement, represents 3 million Canadian workers. The CLC brings together Canada's national and international unions along with the provincial and territorial federations of labour and 137 district labour councils. Web site: IN: ECONOMY, FINANCE, LABOUR, POLITICS, SOCIAL

Contact Information

  • Jeff Atkinson, Canadian Labour Congress
    Primary Phone: 613-526-7425
    Secondary Phone: 613-863-1413