Remarks by the Deputy Prime Minister in Brampton, Ontario, on strong supply chains and making life more affordable

Speech

July 5, 2022

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I would like to begin by acknowledging that the land that we are gathered on is situated on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, and before them, the traditional territory of the Haudenosaunee and the Huron‑Wendat Nation.

I am so glad to be here in Brampton today, and to be here with my friends, Shafqat Ali, MP Brampton Centre, Ruby Sahota, MP Brampton North, Maninder Sidhu, MP Brampton East, and Sonia Sidhu, MP Brampton South, and many of their family members.  We have such a great team of MPs here in Brampton.  

I also want to say how happy I am—and how inspired I am—to be here today at KJS.

What I saw today, what we’re all seeing around us—this is Canada.  And this is Canada at its best.

I really just want to say: seeing the work you do here makes me proud to be Canadian.  It inspires me about our country, and I’m really grateful to you all.

The past two years have demonstrated just how important strong and reliable supply chains are – they were absolutely critical to getting the supplies and the vaccines that Canada needed to get through the pandemic.

It is your work that keeps the shelves of our grocery stores stocked.  You are the people who make sure that we can put food on the table.

I know that KJS does a lot of work in the automotive industry.  Your work means our car sector can keep on operating.  And that people who work in it can continue to have great jobs.

Today, our economy is recovering very strongly from the COVID recession – our real GDP is 2.2 percent bigger than it was when COVID hit.  And we have the strongest jobs recovery in the G7.

And that means that we need our supply chains today, more than ever, to continue to drive economic growth for Canada.

And we know that the heart of strong and reliable supply chains is truckers.  Truckers here in Canada who move the goods that Canadians need – at all hours of the day and no matter what the weather.

It is inspiring entrepreneurial, innovative companies like KJS here in Brampton — and the hard‑working drivers, mechanics, and front office people who I’ve had the real privilege and honour of meeting today — without whom our country — our economy — would not function.

As our economy continues to grow, and to ensure that our supply chains can deliver the goods that Canadians need, our government is working hard to keep our trucking industry strong for the months and years to come.

That’s why we’ve implemented 10 days of paid sick leave for workers in federally‑regulated sectors, including trucking.

We fought to protect NAFTA and Canada’s trading relationship with the United States.  So much of the work done out of these offices and these warehouses is cross‑border work.  People here know very, very well how important that relationship is.  We fought to preserve it, and we’re going to continue to do that.

We’re investing in immigration – this is a remarkable competitive advantage that Canada has in the world – and we need to continue, as a country, to rely on our really unique and remarkable openness to immigration.  

To make sure the trucking industry can remain competitive in the green economy of tomorrow, we’re investing in helping you make your trucks more energy efficient and in getting more zero‑emission trucks into fleets.

And we’re helping our Canadian businesses grow and create good middle‑class jobs at places like innovative, entrepreneurial companies like KJS.

But even as the Canadian economy is growing and as Canada continues our strong recovery from the COVID recession, I know that inflation is making life more expensive for families here in Brampton and across the country.

Inflation is a global phenomenon – it’s caused by Vladimir Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine and it’s caused by China’s COVID-zero policies.  And by the supply chains snarls, which have affected the whole world as we have opened up in the wake of COVID.

All of us are affected by global supply chain problems.  And we’re feeling it.

We’re feeling it when we go to buy our groceries.  We’re feeling it when we go to fill up our cars or our trucks with gas.

So, what is our government going to do to help Canadians weather this latest storm?  Well, what we’re going to do is exactly what we’ve done over these past two years of COVID: we have a plan, and we’re going to work together, and support each other to get through this.

We’ve introduced programs like the Multigenerational Home Renovation Tax Credit.  That’s going to make it more affordable to have parents or grandparents living with their family under one roof.  And it’s also an important part of solving the housing challenge many of us are facing.

And at this moment of global inflation, our government has an Affordability Plan to help Canadians directly with the rising cost of living.

Here’s what our Affordability Plan includes:

  • An enhanced Canada Workers Benefit that will put up to $2,400 additional dollars into the pockets of low‑income families starting this year;
  • Cutting child care fees by an average of 50 per cent by the end of this year;
  • A 10 per cent increase in Old Age Security for seniors 75 and over – that comes into effect this month;
  • A dental care program, starting with children under 12, this year;
  • A $500 payment this year to help people who rent and who are struggling with the cost of housing;
  • And, of course, our main support programs – the Canada Child Benefit, the GST Credit, the Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security, and the Guaranteed Income Supplement – are all indexed to inflation and will be increasing.

For a couple here in Brampton, with an income of $45,000 and a child in daycare, this Affordability Plan could mean roughly an additional $7,600 on top of existing benefits – more than 16 per cent of their annual income – this fiscal year.

A senior with a disability living here in Brampton could benefit from over $2,500 more this fiscal year than she received last year.

Now, these measures are part of the fiscally responsible budget that I tabled in April.  We know we can afford it, because they are already accounted for in our AAA‑rated fiscal framework.  

But, for the Canadians who need this support the most – for the most vulnerable Canadians who are really struggling when it comes to buying groceries or filling up their car or truck with gas – these measures represent new money that they didn’t get last year, and will make life more affordable exactly when they need the support the most.

This is a difficult time for countries around the world, and it is a challenging time for Canadians.

But, thanks to companies like KJS and the amazing people who work here who I was so lucky to meet today, there is absolutely no country in the world better placed to navigate the global economic challenges than Canada.  

So, let’s keep on working together, I know we’re going to meet this challenge, and I’m really, really privileged to have had the chance to talk to so many people here today. 

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