Eli Ridder | The Post
Canada’s Minister of Finance Bill Morneau announced the new federal budget on Tuesday that emphasizes gender equality in the workforce, science and the environment.
The 367-page spending plan titled “Equality + Growth” aims to launch higher productivity, off-setting an ageing population bring and keep more women in the workplace in science and skilled trades.
Money is being sent towards improving the living conditions of Indigenous People’s, taking care of the opioid crisis and tackle the asylum seekers coming across the border from the United States.
“It is a plan that puts people first – that invests in Canadians and in the things that matter most to them,” Morneau told the House of Commons in his budget speech.
Overall, the 2018 details a $18.1 billion deficit with a $3 billion adjustment for risk, in a move that shows the Liberal Party is loyal to their plan to spend big, even with borrowed money, to improve the lives of Canadians in the future.
The federal budget includes $21.5 million in new spending over six years.
A word thrown around by news agencies and pundits consantly previous to the budget release was gender-based analysis, a system employed by the Liberals to measure how policies would impact men, women, and children.
“We know that the way to best impact our long-term demographics is to get every Canadian with a real and fair chance not only work, but to have really good work, and we start with women,” Morneau said before the budget was tabled, reported the Canadian Press.
“If half of our population are held back, we’re just not going to be as successful.”
Trudeau’s government pushed money towards targeting new parental supports, gender equality and anti-harassment initiatives, as well as measures to promote pay equity.
The Liberals also vowed to cement the gender-based analysis process used in the budget 2018 preparation for future spending plans and next governments.
Strong economic growth along with back-benched infrastructure spending cleared tied up budgets to be spent on programs, hiring new judges and on new prison farms.
Advisory council, fairness
The budget also confirmed the previously reported creation of an advisory council to be chaired by Dr. Eric Hoskins, who resigned Monday as Ontario health minister.
The newly announced Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare will work to bring about pharmaceutical coverage for Canada, although Morneau did not promise that it would be ready in time for the 2019 election.
Morneau said the goal isn’t simply fairness — it’s also to shield Canada’s long-term growth and labour market from the effects of a changing demographic, reported CBC News.
“We believe that Canada’s future success rests on making sure that every Canadian has an opportunity to work, and to earn a good living from that work,” he said in a speech prepared for delivery in the House.
“And that includes Canada’s talented, ambitious and hard-working women.”
Tories to vote ‘no’, NDP undecided
Opposition leader Andrew Scheer said that his Conservative Party would be voting against the tabled federal budget on CBC News an hour after the legislation was introduced.
New Democratic Party leader Jagmeet Singh said that his party caucus would first need to meet before deciding whether to vote in favour of the 2018 budget or not.
With their strong majority, the Liberal Party will be able to pass the budget without support from the other parties.
Some facts from the budget include:
- Overall $21.5 million in new spending
- $1.2 billion for parental leave
- $3.8 billion for science research and innovation
- $4.7 billion over five years improving lives of Indigenous People and bridging the gap
- $140 million over five years toward collaboration and innovation through the College and Community Innovation Program
Humber College President Chris Whitaker praised the five-year federal investment in college research, saying it benefits “business and students” in a tweet.
The Post has reached out for comment to all three major federal political parties to request more information regarding what the budget means for post-secondary students, however, that focus is largely assigned to the provinces.
More details to follow. Image of Justin Trudeau Bill Morneau from the Toronto Star.