Alistair spoke about the Canada Pension Plan in the House of Commons
October 24th, 2016 - 1:00pm
Mr. Speaker, I listened with interest to my hon. colleague's speech about the Canada pension plan and his views on it, particularly his comment about giving people more choice and the fact that the Conservatives stood for putting more money in the pockets of people. I would argue that when we look at the poverty situation among seniors, many of them do not have a choice.
The level of poverty that I have witnessed in my community among seniors shows that they really have no choice. It is a day-to-day fight for them.
Studies that came out earlier this year showed that only 15% to 20% of middle-income Canadians without a workplace pension plan had saved enough money for retirement.
I also want to take issue with the Conservatives calling this a tax. This is not a tax. This would be a deferred wage for retirement years. I do not know of any tax that I pay where I would get money back later on. This is not a tax. People would be contributing to their retirement security to provide them with a meaningful income.
Furthermore, putting more money in the pockets of seniors is a good thing for small communities because seniors spend money in their communities. They often own their own homes and many of their housing assets. Putting more income in their pockets is be good for local communities.
In the previous Parliament, the Conservative members supported the pooled registered pension plans, but most of those benefits would overwhelmingly go to upper middle-class Canadians. Would the member now admit that those plans failed to improve the lives of middle and lower-income Canadians and that it is smart policy to educate Canadians about saving more? Current statistics show that this is not the case.