Communist Party election campaign: “Manitoba can’t afford Tory austerity”
The Pallister government has spent the last 3 years slashing social programs and public services under cover of reducing deficits. But the cuts to hospitals and healthcare – including the decision to nix the regional hospital in Portage La Prairie – show that the Tories’ real goal was privatization – not deficit reduction. And now the people of Manitoba are suffering the consequences of reduced access to hospitals and healthcare that will cost lives.
Working people will die from these cuts, while the rich will buy front-of-the-line access to healthcare in the US.
What the Tories have done to healthcare, they intend to do to public auto insurance. Secret government documents show the Pallister government is planning to privatize Autopac and invite the biggest insurance companies in Canada to chow down on auto insurance rates that will double in no time. That’s the reality in provinces without public auto insurance.
What do the Tories have in mind for education in Manitoba? Pallister’s Ontario buddy, Premier Doug Ford, has launched a vicious attack on both public and post-secondary education, resulting in massive cuts, closures, and layoffs, bigger classes, and the scrapping of the only French-language University in Canada outside Quebec.
Pallister has also lined up with Ford and Tory Premiers across the country to downplay the climate crisis and the urgent need to sharply reduce carbon emissions and fossil fuel use across the country. This is inexcusable and will lead to irreversible climate change. Manitoba can’t afford another 4 years of Pallister and the Tories.
Pallister has legislated wage cuts for Manitoba workers, and kept the minimum wage at $11.35 (and lower) while governments in BC, Alberta and Ontario agreed to $15 minimums before newly-elected Tory governments reversed the hikes.
Austerity has resulted in widespread social misery, unemployment, precarious work, and deep cuts to real wages and living standards, while cutting off access to education, apprenticeships, and good jobs for youth. Women, Indigenous People, racialized people and immigrants have all been victimized by this government’s vicious policies. Meanwhile the corporations and the wealthy have done very well indeed with increased corporate profits and personal wealth.
Today more than ever it’s time for fundamental change that will put people’s needs before corporate greed. Fundamental change that will curb corporate power, strengthen democracy and the power of the labour and people’s movements, and open the door to socialism.
The Communist Party and its candidates are committed to fight for A People’s Agenda for Manitoba, and to win wide support for the policies below. The best outcome in this election is a new government with new policies committed to meeting the needs of Manitobans. The election of Communists to the Legislature will help strengthen that fight.
Working people can count on the Communist Party to continue to fight for working people, inside and outside the Legislature, now and after the election. On this centenary of the Winnipeg General Strike, working people must unite and move onto the offensive to secure their rights and standards. Another world is possible, urgent, and worth fighting for!
(The above article is from the August 1-31, 2019, issue of People's Voice, Canada's leading socialist newspaper. Articles can be reprinted free if the source is credited. Subscription rates in Canada: $30/year, or $15 low income rate; for U.S. readers - $45 US per year; other overseas readers - $45 US or $50 CDN per year. Send to People's Voice Business Manager, 706 Clark Drive, Vancouver, BC, V5L 3J1.)