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Island MPs concerned about cuts to benefit programs

Cuts come as Statistics Canada show rising cost of living
Island NDP MPs are concerned about seniors and low-income families losing supports as the cost of living rises. (Black Press Media File)

Amid the rising cost of food, housing and gasoline, Vancouver Island NDP MPs are calling on the government to stop cutting programs that help Canadians.

MPs Rachel Blaney (North Island-Powell River), Gord Johns (Courtenay-Alberni) and Alistair MacGregor (Cowichan-Malahat-Langford) are asking for action to help low-income people who have recently lost the Canada Child Benefit. This comes on the heels of a similar ask that seniors who have been cut off from the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) continue getting the help they need.

“With the cost of living going up, local families cannot afford to have the benefits they rely on to get by taken away from them without warning,” said MacGregor. “We cannot leave vulnerable families in this position. The government needs to address this crisis now.”

Statistics Canada recently indicated that the cost of living was rising across the country, with gas prices rising 41.7 per cent on average since this time last year.

“While the Liberals are ready to hand out millions in pandemic subsidies to big corporations without any strings attached, they are punishing everyday Canadians who took the supports they qualified for,” said Johns. “Canadians need a government that is there to support them, not one that puts them in a desperate situation.”

On Nov. 14, internal government documents showed the impacts of the cuts to benefit programs, which mostly affected seniors and low-income families.

“Low-income seniors and families cannot afford to have these vital benefits taken away, especially with the rising cost of living,” said Blaney. “The Liberal Government needs to address this crisis immediately.”

RELATED: Documents detail impacts of federal aid on benefits for seniors, families

NDP Critics concerned about seniors losing Guaranteed Income Supplement

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Marc Kitteringham

About the Author: Marc Kitteringham

I joined Campbell River Mirror in early 2020, writing about the environment, housing, local government and more.
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