Reject the Bogus Cartel Party Promises — Keep Organizing!
Seniors across Canada are organizing and waging struggles for their dignity, quality of life and the right to housing and economic security. Meanwhile, PR firms and campaign strategists hired by the cartel parties for their election campaigns use announcements cynically designed to divert seniors from organizing to defend themselves. Instead, seniors are browbeaten and told to vote for and put their faith in cartel party representatives whose promises do not deal concretely with the reality most seniors face and whom they cannot hold to account once elected.
The Liberal Party announced it will put “up to $729 more in the pockets of seniors each year, by increasing Old Age Security (OAS) by ten per cent for seniors once they turn 75.” It also promised “up to $2,080 in additional benefits, every year, to those who’ve lost a loved one, by increasing the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) survivor’s benefit by 25 per cent.”
The Conservatives claim they will alleviate the poverty many seniors face with a tax credit reducing federal taxes by $150 a year. First why are governments are taxing seniors at all when by definition they are supposed to be in retirement with their only income coming from a pension and possibly savings. Second, for seniors to receive the proposed tax credit their income will have to be high enough. So, this will not apply to seniors living in poverty on the Canada and Quebec Pension Plans.
Announcement like these from the cartel parties are intended to disinform seniors and demobilize them from waging their struggles.
According to StatsCan, 218,000 seniors continue to live in poverty according to a poverty line the Liberal government established. The poverty line itself is a bogus concoction to attack the right of seniors to live at a modern Canadian standard and not below or near a so-called poverty line.
A study conducted by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) found that the average wage needed across Canada to live according to modern standards in a one bedroom apartment is $20.20 an hour working a full 40-hour work week, and $22.40 an hour when a two bedroom apartment is needed.
The total pension of a senior over 75 receiving the Liberal-proposed increased Old Age Security and maximum Guaranteed Income Supplement would be about $19,000 a year. This is equivalent to an hourly wage of $9.13 an hour, less than half the CCPA suggested amount for a Canadian standard of living.