Liberals rhetorically support NDP pharmacare bill, then vote against it

Posted on February 26, 2021 in Health Debates

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The bill did not have specific dollar amounts in it. It was merely a statement of principles to guide the federal government in consultations with the provinces — if and when such talks occur. The purpose of the bill was to advance a process to which the Trudeau government claims it is fully committed, namely, to expand Canada’s public and universal health-care system so that it includes prescription drugs. There was no timeline in the measure. The bill would not bind the government in any way… Why the Liberals voted “No” remains a mystery.

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Child & Family

It’s time to move ahead on a national child-care system

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… new money for child care must support programs. That is the only way Ottawa will be able to lower parent fees and raise wages, which in turn, will attract and retain well-trained staff who are the foundation of high-quality child care. That should be the starting point as Ottawa negotiates bilateral funding agreements with provinces and territories… Provinces that are ready to sign-on should get started immediately. But under no circumstances should Ottawa ink funding deals with provinces that don’t embrace this new federal vision.


With half measures like these, Canada is clearly not interested in gun control

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… the scattershot handgun ban makes no sense. Legal handguns have grown like mushrooms in the dark, so much so that there are now more than one million, almost three times as many as there were in 2006. If Ottawa allows provinces to block municipalities from regulating handguns, it could mean some provinces will do it and others won’t. This is lacework regulation, and it is not the Canadian way.


Education

OCUFA: As Laurentian’s funding crisis continues, Ministry of Colleges and Universities refuses to take action

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… at a meeting with OCUFA, Ministry representatives said the government intends to wait until after the university has been dramatically restructured through the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act(CCAA) to determine its next steps… “For years we have been warning about the government’s chronic underfunding of Ontario’s universities and the negative impact it would have on students and education quality,” said Rahul Sapra, President of OCUFA.


The ugly side of performance-based funding for universities

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Universities are much more than entrepreneurial training centres to be rewarded for performing short-sighted corporate-styled research and worker development. With that mandate, they cease to be universities in any sense of the word. To create a future where we can all thrive, our citizens need to not only have the skills to prosper today, but be capable of imagining and implementing a better tomorrow.


Employment

Legislating paid sick days is the right thing to do

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… one of Premier Doug Ford’s first acts of government was a sweeping repeal of labour law amendments that took away equal pay for equal work, paid sick days, and the $15 minimum wage… The legislation that Ford scrapped was the result of a multi-year, province-wide review of working conditions that included workers, unions, employers, researchers and more… What are we waiting for? Provinces must step up now, fill this gap, legislate paid sick days, and make them permanent.


The glaring gap in the COVID-19 response

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If workplaces are deemed to be essential businesses, then we need to ensure workers are properly protected… for many workers, COVID-19 has created an impossible dilemma. These people need to be supported, because they get up every day to produce the products and services we need to live and work through this pandemic. Paid sick days are long-overdue, urgent, and required to protect our community. Paid sick leave will help save lives.


Equality

Ontario Introduces New Anti-Human Trafficking Legislation

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… we worked with a wide spectrum of stakeholders to establish a comprehensive $307 million Anti-Human Trafficking Strategy,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “These legislative changes, if passed, will reinforce the strategy’s key objectives of supporting survivors, protecting children and youth, raising awareness among parents and community partners as well as dismantling criminal networks.”


We are not visible minorities; we are the global majority

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Describing someone as a visible minority situates whiteness as the reference standard and the norm by which all people are judged. It is a term of disempowerment that promotes the othering of racialized peoples and implies subordination to white power structures… If we are to end white supremacy in this country, we need to change our discourse on race. This requires changing the way we think and speak about Canada’s racialized population.


Health

Liberals rhetorically support NDP pharmacare bill, then vote against it

Source: — Authors:

The bill did not have specific dollar amounts in it. It was merely a statement of principles to guide the federal government in consultations with the provinces — if and when such talks occur. The purpose of the bill was to advance a process to which the Trudeau government claims it is fully committed, namely, to expand Canada’s public and universal health-care system so that it includes prescription drugs. There was no timeline in the measure. The bill would not bind the government in any way… Why the Liberals voted “No” remains a mystery.


COVID HIGHLIGHTS ACUTE SHORTAGE OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS

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… paying higher rates for physician services would have a negative effect on the number of health services provided per capita as physicians tend to reduce the number of hours worked as their pay increases. Nurses, conversely, have a positive – though small – correlation between remuneration, numbers per capita and health outcomes… the report advocates shifting methods and modes of care delivery, or adapting scopes of practice… to address short-term healthcare labour supply gaps.


Inclusion

The audacity of Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream

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Ending poverty… will be much harder than ending segregation, he correctly predicted. After all, “it didn’t cost the nation anything to integrate lunch counters,” but “it will cost the nation billions of dollars to get rid of poverty.” … King appealed for a national policy of full employment, a guaranteed income and a massive investment in affordable housing… Indeed, America has never shown a commitment to “genuine equality,” he said.


Let’s make 2021 the year we eliminate online hate in Canada

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the Canadian Coalition to End Online Hate, a broad-based alliance of close to 40 (and growing) organizations representing a diverse array of communities, are calling for the following concrete actions… Increasing resources for law enforcement, Crown attorneys, and judges to ensure they receive sufficient training on how to apply existing laws to deal with online hate… Creating a civil remedy to address online hate and… Establishing strong and clear regulations for online platforms and Internet service providers 


Social Security

Is it time to bury the idea of a universal basic income?

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… the real issue with basic income is a public commitment to an adequate income floor below which no one should fall when factoring in all income sources. A range of income support programs can provide universal coverage without being uniform in delivery as the recent B.C. study indicates… Highly diverse needs by age, gender, (dis)ability, family status, education, employment status, etc. suggest that income supports should be tailored to a wide variety of living circumstances within our population.


Instead of a universal basic income, governments should enrich existing social programs

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… while UBI is desirable in principle, it’s not a magic solution to the intricate and perennial problems of poverty and income inequality. Furthermore, its implementation in Canada is not financially, administratively, politically or constitutionally feasible.


Governance

Doug Ford doesn’t believe in government — and that explains a lot

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… the premier has been trying to bargain with the COVID-19 virus from day one. Do we really need more staff in long-term care? Do we really need to legislate paid sick days so contagious workers can stay home? Do we really need smaller class sizes so students and educators are safer? The answer to these questions is yes, but Ford hasn’t used the full legislative and financial powers of government to fight the virus. At every turn, he’s held back, seemingly always hoping for a better, cheaper deal… In other areas, the government has acted without hesitation…


From sunny ways to icy reception: How the Liberals are handling issues involving Big Tech firms

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“… we’ve come to the realization that this great, wonderful promise of the free internet… came at a pretty steep cost”… Ottawa’s more aggressive push also comes at a time of rising public distrust of the tech giants worldwide… they appear to have public opinion on their side… polls… showed broad support for policies such as more social-media regulation and requiring digital platforms to charge sales tax.