The Liberal government needs to reinvest in the public service, not introduce more austerity measures.
That was the main messages delivered by PSAC regional executive vice-president Jeannie Baldwin during the House of Commons Finance Committee pre-budget consultations this week.
“The Liberal election platform promised to improve the quality of public services including reducing wait times and increasing access to in-person service,” said Baldwin. “The only way to achieve this is by ensuring staffing levels meet Canadians’ needs. Our members expect to see tangible evidence of this in the upcoming budget.”
While acknowledging the government has started restoring some public services, she pointed out that many more need to be reinstated.
Among the many examples, Baldwin talked about cited front line staff who provide Employment Insurance, CPP and OAS benefits.
“These workers provide a lifeline to the most vulnerable Canadians. Wait times to access their hard-earned benefits are simply too long.”
Baldwin also pointed out that cuts to corporate taxes have starved the public treasury. She urged the government to consider progressive taxation measures and pursue lost revenue in offshore tax havens.
“As a large employer and key provider of social infrastructure, the government should lead by example by investing in public services and the workers who provide them,” concluded Baldwin.