View from Labour, March 27th, 2009

Kevin Page, the Federal Budget Officer, says that the economy is shrinking faster than previously expected. The Budget Officer is similar to an auditor and is independent from Parliament. He told Government this week that they should increase the stimulus package, but first get the one announced several weeks ago in operation.
Line ups at EI offices and delays reported nationally are causing the unemployed hardship and grief. Some opposition MPs are calling for increases in the stimulus packages, but don’t want to propose anything that will further delay the first one getting on the ground. We can’t fault the government for not knowing how deep the recession will go, but they should have had their “shovel ready” projects “cheques ready”. Also Prime Minister Harper should stop telling us how well he is doing until he does something. Kevin Page is quoted in National Media as saying that Finance Minister Flaherty predicted, in February, his package would save or create 190.000 jobs over two years, but we’ve lost 212,000 in the first two months of this year before a dime of the money is out the door. We can try to make a difference by emailing or writing your MP and the Minister of Finance in Ottawa. Let them know we care and vote.
On top of all the National Problems, the numbers out show B.C. losing jobs at a higher rate than most of Canada.
Shortly you should see others writing the majority of the View From Labour. I’ve been retired from my job now for almost 2 years and the latest AGM of the PADLC elected a new president so I’m no longer the “Past President”. I’ll fill in and assist, but others will be writing most of the columns. This will likely start by the end of April.