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Response to Speech from the Throne - Week of September 30. 2020

Last week, the Liberal government presented their Speech from the Throne, outlining their priorities for this session of Parliament. Going into this speech, I hoped the government would present a plan to bring Canada through this crisis. It’s clear to me now that they have no such plan.


As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Canadians across the country are rightfully concerned about their health and their employment. But the Throne Speech contained no pledge to increase health transfers to the provinces, no strategy to increase access to testing, and no timeline for approvals for rapid, at-home tests.


The Liberals gave us vague promises about improving business support programs, after dragging their feet for months as Conservatives called for reforms.


The Liberals also claim they’re going to address infrastructure gaps, unsafe drinking water, and lack of internet access in the North. But the Throne Speech provided no details about how the Liberals intend to achieve these goals, and no commitments to the investments we desperately need.


For instance, internet access for rural and remote communities is something I’ve been fighting for since I was first elected. The urgency of this issue has been obvious for years, yet we’ve seen very little action from the Liberals.

This past May, the Conservative Rural Internet Caucus released a policy document with a plan to bring internet connectivity to rural and remote residents of all regions of Canada. If the Liberal government wants to make good on their pledge, they can start by immediately implementing these recommendations, and by reducing red tape for providers looking to deploy innovative solutions.


I was glad to see the Liberal government finally acknowledge that Canada’s tourism industry needs help. Members from all parties have been lobbying for support for months, without any sign of movement, as tourist operators lost their summer seasons. I hope the government will finally step up to help tourism operators - however, I fear it’s too little, too late.


While I appreciate that the Throne Speech mentioned housing and food security, I’m concerned about the lack of detail provided. If the government is serious about ensuring food security and lowering the cost of living in the North, they need to commit to serious investments in infrastructure and transportation.

I didn’t hear those details in the Throne Speech, and it’s clear that the Liberals have no plan.


In fact, the only thing the government was clear on was their intention to further restrict gun rights. This is an attack on our traditional way of life, at a time when rural and northern Canadians are suffering enough.


The Liberals have no plan to get our economy moving, no plan to address the health crisis, and no plan for the North.


The Conservatives will continue to hold this government to account and provide a compassionate, ethical alternative under the leadership of Erin O’Toole.


As always, if there is anything my office can assist you with, or if you would like to arrange a meeting, please do not hesitate to call me at 807-468-2170 (Kenora) or 807-223-2182 (Dryden) or contact me by email at eric.melillo@parl.gc.ca.


Sincerely,


Eric Melillo

Member of Parliament – Kenora riding

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