With Summer fast approaching and the end of COVID-19’s grip on Canada drawing near, the post-pandemic world is becoming clearer by the day. Though Canada’s vaccination program has been far behind our friends in countries like the United States, United Kingdom, and Israel, Canadians are finally seeing rapid increases in the amount of vaccinations given nationwide. With that in mind, it is important that we prepare ourselves for a future free of the pandemic – a task that has been debated at length in Ottawa since the last publication of Senior’s Digest.
On April 21st, the Liberal government presented its first annual budget since 2019. Of the problems with the budget, there are two that stand out: the lack of a plan to reduce government debt and the creation of two separate classes of seniors under Old Age Security (OAS).
Throughout COVID-19, I have remained supportive of programs such as the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) in order to help Canadians weather this crisis. However, the reality is that the federal government must implement a plan to reduce debt and curb its mass-printing of money to fund its spending as we move into the post-COVID era. Both practices are unsustainable and will saddle young Canadians with financial burden for the rest of their lives, whether it’s having to pay down even more government debt or suffering the consequences of inflation (e.g. inability to buy a home, an increasing cost of living, etc.). A plan to bring government debt to a fiscally responsible level is needed now more than ever.
This budget has also created two separate classes of seniors under OAS. Rather than providing an increase in OAS to all seniors, as was recommended in the House of Commons motion I was proud to vote for in March, the federal government has chosen to provide further OAS support only to those 75 or older as of July 2022. Though this support is certainly needed, the creation of two separate classes of seniors leaves behind those under the age of 75, many of whom remain in desperate need of support. I will continue holding the government accountable to ensure all seniors receive the support they need.
As always, my team and I are here to help with any federal issues you may have. If you are having problems with the Canada Pension Plan, Guaranteed Income Supplement, or any other federal government-related programs and challenges, please do not hesitate to reach out to my office for assistance. We are here to help.