By: Hon. Lena Metlege Diab, Member of Parliament for Halifax West
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I want to wish you and your loved ones a safe and joyous time together, especially following the hardship of Hurricane Fiona. I am grateful for the rapid response of our federal government and armed forces, and I want you to know that I will continue to advocate for action to address the unacceptable telecommunications outages we faced and for robust support for the families and businesses affected. If you are able to, I encourage you to donate to the Canadian Red Cross’s relief efforts. Our government will match all donations by individuals and corporations made by October 23.
I know affordability is, and has been, top of mind for many of you. It’s a topic I’ve heard about often over the past few months. My colleagues and I share those concerns, and I’m pleased to share with you some information on the targeted, practical measures our government is taking to make life more affordable for Canadians. We are:
- Doubling your GST credit for six months. This will provide up to $234 extra for single Canadians, up to $467 for the average family, and up to $225 for seniors.
- Providing $1300/per child in Canada Dental Benefit payments over the next two years to uninsured families with kids under 12. This would be paid directly to eligible families making under $90,000/ year, and is our first step towards a universal, national dental care program.
- Topping up the Canada Housing Benefit to provide a one-time, $500 payment to approximately 1.8 million low-income renters. The payment will be available to families earning less than $35,000/year and individuals (including students) earning less than $20,000/year who pay at least 30% of their income on rent.
- Offering $20/month home internet to seniors receiving the maximum Guaranteed Income Supplement, and to families receiving the maximum Canada Child Benefit.
- Investing over $118 million to support Atlantic Canadians in converting from expensive home heating oil to greener, more affordable home heating sources, like electric heat pumps, and
- Working to create a new Canada Disability Benefit for working-age adults with disabilities as quickly as possible.
Together, these are important new ways we’re providing relief to Canadians. At a time where we’re recording a federal budget surplus, these measures make good sense and will help support those feeling the biggest pinch from inflation.
I will continue to listen to my constituents and advocate for the support Canadians need. I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to speak to me or write to my office. It is a privilege to serve you.