Flaherty’s budget consultations ignore ordinary British Columbians, says MP Libby Davies


January 12, 2009

VANCOUVER-Vancouver East NDP MP Libby Davies today criticized Finance Minister Jim Flaherty for ignoring working and low-income people during pre-budget consultation meetings in BC.

“At a time when working and low-income people in Vancouver are worried about losing their jobs and keeping a roof over their heads, Jim Flaherty chose to hold his only Vancouver-area pre-budget consultation in West Vancouver, one of the wealthiest municipalities in Canada,” said Davies.

“If Minister Flaherty really wanted to hear the economic priorities of ordinary Canadians, he would have held forums in places like East Vancouver, or in BC’s hard-hit forestry communities,” said Davies. “Instead, he chose to have a meeting at a shopping mall in a high-income area, where he hopes he’ll get a friendly reception.”

“People in East Vancouver have been telling me they want a budget that protects jobs and invests in things ordinary Canadians need, like affordable housing,” Davies said. “The city of Vancouver and the provincial government have started taking steps to address the homelessness crisis. It’s time for the federal government to finally do its part, and begin investing in social and co-op housing again.”

“The Minister of Finance may not want to hear what my constituents have to say, but I’ll make sure the government gets the message when Parliament resumes on January 26,” said the Vancouver East MP.