Social Justice and Democracy

Conservatives refuse to talk lagging wages instead push low-wage austerity agenda

May 16, 2022

Bruske: As wages lag far behind inflation, Conservative leadership candidates ignore struggling workers.

OTTAWA – Canada’s unions are shining a spotlight on how the Conservative Party is missing in action when it comes to standing up for workers who are seeing their buying power shrink as their wages rise at half the rate of inflation.

“Workers are worried about how the rising costs of groceries, gas and family essentials are eating into their paycheques more and more each month. Conservatives love to talk about inflation yet are silent on how corporate greed is fuelling skyrocketing prices or how workers’ wages are falling behind,” said Bea Bruske, President of the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC). “All we hear from these leadership candidates is the same low-wage austerity playbook we have seen for decades from Conservatives and their Bay St. buddies.”

Evidence shows that continued government spending to help Canadians through these difficult times and wages aren’t what is driving up inflation, instead it is global events disrupting supply chains, pandemic profiteers, and the hollowing out of our manufacturing driving up the cost of living.

“Fair wages, good jobs and investing in our infrastructure and supply chains are all vital parts of the solution. This will help Canadians pay for family essentials and strengthen our ability to withstand international instability,” continued Bruske. “Yet what we hear from the Conservative Party and the candidates competing to lead them is scaremongering about government spending.”

Bruske added that if Conservatives on the leadership campaign trail want to talk about government spending cuts, they must be honest about what services and help for people they are planning to cut.

“Conservative candidates are attacking the Bank of Canada, talking about ending supply management, and floating bizarre suggestions around crypto currencies, while loudly condemning public spending,” concluded Bruske. “Yet they won’t say what they plan to cut. Conservatives must now level with Canadians. Are they planning to cut health care, employment insurance, and other vital services people depend on, just like last time they were in government?”

-30-

To arrange an interview, please contact:
CLC Media Relations
media@clcctc.ca
613-526-7426

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