Libby speaks out against the health cuts in the budget

House of Commons


June 12, 2012

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):  

Mr. Speaker, the NDP stands up for its principles against reckless Conservative budgets that leave Canadians behind.

In the last election, the Conservatives pledged to preserve health transfers and promised not to download costs to provinces but these promises have been broken.

Will the Conservatives abandon their plans to cut provincial health care transfers by $30 billion and instead sit down with the provinces and work out a solution?

Hon. Ted Menzies (Minister of State (Finance), CPC):

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has it exactly wrong.  We actually planned for increases to health care transfers of 6% going forward. We want to ensure that the increases we made to health care transfers every year from where we were at the beginning of our mandate continue out until 2017 and, to increase those. We put a floor in so they could not, after that, go below 3%.  I am not sure where that question came from but it certainly was not from fact.

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, the facts are that the Conservatives’ unilateral decision means $30 billion less in health transfers.

It is no wonder the Conservatives refuse to consult with Canadians on their Trojan Horse bill.

In NDP hearings, we heard witnesses paint a bleak picture of this budget. The CMA president warned about the health consequences of raising the OAS age, of cutting health transfers and refusing to move forward on a national pharmaceuticals strategy.

Why are the Conservatives downloading more costs onto the provinces instead of bringing forward a national pharmacare plan?