Libby urges the Conservative government to expand compassionate care benefits for parents


House of Commons


April 30, 2012

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):  

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives keep making cuts they were never honest about before, like the decision to cut the OAS. Now they are backing away from the commitment that they made to the parents of gravely ill children.

The Conservatives brag about having acted to help parents of crime victims, so why are they failing the parents of children who have fallen victim to illness?

The Conservatives promised to help. When will they fulfill that promise and why was it not in the budget?

Hon. Diane Finley (Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, CPC):

Mr. Speaker, our government does want to help families when one of their members is facing a serious illness. That is why we expanded eligibility for compassionate care benefits under EI.  As well, we did make a promise in last year’s election campaign that we would be bringing forward assistance for families who have gravely ill children. We intend to keep that promise and we will be doing it soon.

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, we have not seen anything on this so-called promise the Conservatives have made.

In fact, at her own press conference today the minister refused to answer questions about it because apparently it does not fit with her message of the day.

No wonder the Conservative government has a well-earned award for secrecy from The Canadian Association of Journalists.

I ask again. Why will the Conservatives not level with Canadians who want straightforward information, or is their PM-approved message of the day as much information as they think Canadians deserve?