Singh’s bill to Lower Prices for Canadians quietly gutted in committee meeting: NDP « Canada’s NDP

June 18, 2024 at 5:30 am  Federal, Politics

OTTAWA – On Monday, Liberal and Bloc Members of Parliament at the Industry committee systematically gutted an NDP bill that would help protect Canadians from consumer abuses.

“I want to be very clear about what happened yesterday: the Liberals and Bloc voted against stronger penalties for price-fixing and banning mergers that are very bad for consumers,” said NDP critic for Innovation, Science and Industry Brian Masse. “Today, Food Banks Canada released a new report that shows a staggering 25 per cent of Canadians are living at a poverty level — this means they can’t afford at least two household essentials. This is what Canadians are dealing with. Instead of helping to make people’s lives easier and more affordable, the Liberals and Bloc refused to protect Canadians from price-gouging. It’s absolutely shameful. What a wasted opportunity to help people who feel like they’re constantly getting ripped off at the grocery store or on their cell phone bills.”

The Liberals and Bloc proposed no amendments to the bill but chose to vote against every clause, line-by-line, including the title: Lowering Prices for Canadians Act. Every single witness who testified at the committee agreed that there were parts of the bill that should proceed—including the experts called to committee by the Liberals.

Since the Liberals and Bloc voted against every line of the legislation, the bill will be reported back to the House of Commons as an empty, nameless document.

“Canadians have a right to know what the Liberals did. Instead of increasing penalties for huge corporations that rip you off, instead of stopping mergers that give you fewer choices and drive up prices, the Liberals and the Bloc defended corporations over Canadians struggling with high costs,” said Masse. “If they didn’t support the bill, why bother sending it to committee and hearing from experts who clearly said there was help for Canadians in this legislation? The Liberals and Bloc didn’t propose a single amendment, not a single proposal to make this better. It’s clear they wanted to stand with corporations from the beginning; they just didn’t have the guts to be open with Canadians.”

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