Federal Feature Posts

The Canadian Federal Election

More than anything, the 2021 federal election was a referendum on the Trudeau government's handling of Covid-19, its generous support for both employers and individuals who lost their jobs (or who were in danger of losing their jobs), and its follow-up initiatives to jumpstart an economic recovery - including the April budget. There has been a subtle change in the Liberal government in the past 18 months amounting to at least a temporary suspension of...

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The political triumph of full employment economics in Ottawa and Washington

Reducing unemployment and increasing the wages of low and moderate income earners have become the overriding economic goals of top Canadian and U.S. policy makers, guiding objectives that will shape many of the big decisions being made in Ottawa and Washington in the months ahead. The U.S. and Canada's recent willingness to run historically large deficits in order to create good-paying jobs, marks a sea change in policy circles and more broadly in economic thinking....

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Why Ontario’s Covid strategy is failing to stop the spread of the virus

Summary Ontario's current strategy will fail to contain the Covid pandemic because it is not targeted at the dynamic that is driving the increase in "second wave" Covid cases in the province. The hard truth is that workers in food processing plants, warehouses, manufacturing plants and customer facing workplaces (retail, etc.) are taking the virus home with them to overcrowded, multigenerational households where they are unable to isolate. Because there is no ability to isolate,...

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Rise in September Covid caseload due to provincial government failure

On September 24, a news release put out by the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) on behalf of 38 infectious disease specialists and public health professionals called for the Government of Ontario to: "immediately place restrictions on non-essential businesses and activities that facilitate social gatherings and increase opportunities for exposure, including dine-in restaurants and bars, nightclubs, gyms, theatres, and places of worship. The province must also ask non-essential businesses to have employees work from home and...

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Canada’s COVID-19 lockdown: Are we approaching the point where the cure is worse than the disease?

The past three months have shown that with major sacrifices, the community transmission of COVID-19 can be slowed down considerably. In Canada, we can rightfully say that we were able to “flatten the curve” to avert a northern Italy, Madrid or New York City scenario. This is something to celebrate. Now we face the collateral damage of the lockdown: delays in medical care for non-COVID patients, harmful educational impacts on our young people due to...

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Canadian cities reinventing themselves as Covid-19 pandemic recedes – but where are our federal and provincial governments?

Covid-19 has struck the world's major cities hard. New York City, Paris, London, Madrid and Milan have all been hit with particularly virulent outbreaks of the virus with devastating consequences for the quality of everyday life for the residents of these cities. In Canada, Montreal is the epicentre of the pandemic while the Greater Toronto Area has been hard hit as well with 62% of Ontario's confirmed cases. Out of necessity, these cities and cities...

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Canada 2.0: Creating the Canada we want

Even when they recede, pandemics and other great crises seldom leave social and economic arrangements as they were. It is now up to Canadians to decide what the legacy of the COVID-19 will be. What kind of economy will emerge from the crisis? Will it be one that honors the dignity of work, rewards contributions to the real economy, gives workers a meaningful voice and shares the risks of ill health and hard times? We...

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How we beat COVID-19 and start opening up the economy

Now is the time for the provinces to sit down together with the federal government and draw up a detailed implementation plan for re-opening the Canadian economy. Every province should be in a position to re-open some of its social distancing closures by the end of May. It is essential, however, that our governments be clear that the process of re-opening the economy poses two separate questions. One question is short-term and relates to how...

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Canadians are tired of isolation and want a return to normal: Here are four things the government can do now to get us there

After a solitary Easter Sunday, Canadians entered another week in social isolation confronted by two contradictory facts. The lockdowns that have transformed daily life across the country are working, slowing the spread of the virus and saving lives. The western provinces are seeing a significant decline in new cases from their peak, while the number of new cases has flattened in Ontario and Quebec. But the lockdowns have brought commerce to a shuddering halt, forcing...

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Canada needs to get employment programs out the door fast to prevent mass job loss

Canada has shut down all non-essential services to stop the spread of the Covid-19. This action has had massive economic consequences which require an equally massive jobs response by our governments. On Friday, April 9, Statistics Canada reported that more than one million people in Canada lost their jobs in March reflecting the first wave of layoffs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Ontario experienced the largest job losses in raw numbers, with the number of...

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