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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Investing in a Canada where no one is left behind!

NDP Our Vision for Canada

Our Vision for Canada
New Democrats strive to build a society in which every one of its members can reach their full potential. Such progress is judged by how society cares for and supports one another. That means protecting the vulnerable and ensuring that every citizen has access to high quality social programs.
That also means working to keep our communities secure, to ensure our children grow up in a world of mutual respect and safe neighbourhoods. It means taking effective measures when crimes are committed and violence threatens our quality of life.
Nowhere is the commitment to social justice stronger than in our support of public health care. Medicare is fundamental to the way Canada defines itself as a nation and New Democrats are proud to be its founder, its greatest defender and its tireless advocate for improvements. Social democracy is the embodiment of caring for one another and a New Democrat government will ensure that all Canadians prosper and no one is left behind.

3.1 Health

New Democrats believe in:
  1. The right of all Canadians to have universal access to high-quality public health care that is transferable between provinces and territories
  2. Fighting the privatization of public health care services, including through the use of existing mechanisms within the Canada Health Act
  3. Increasing health care transfers to the provinces and territories
  4. Providing incentives to recruit and train more health professionals, especially doctors and nurses
  5. Reducing costs by providing funding for provincial and territorial pharmacare programs, coordinating the bulk purchase of pharmaceutical drugs, and encouraging the use of less expensive generic drugs
  6. Investing in not-for-profit home care for seniors and people with disabilities
  7. Promoting healthy living, physical activity, and reduced tobacco use
  8. Adopting a harm reduction approach to substance abuse and permitting the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes
  9. Protecting the health and safety of sex-trade workers
  10. Working with First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples to address their specific health care challenges
  11. Establishing a comprehensive policy on reproductive health
  12. Working with all relevant authorities and governments to set up coordinated emergency plans in case of natural disaster, terrorism or other emergency
  13. Investing in public health initiatives to deal with pandemics, product and food security, and drinking water
  14. Working towards the establishment of a Canadian Health Covenant or patient’s bill of rights; and
  15. Working towards the establishment of a national healthcare council to ensure the Canada Health Act is enforced and the range of services extended to include home care, palliative care and prescription drugs.

3.2 Post-secondary Education and Training

New Democrats believe in:
  1. The establishment of a Post-Secondary Education Act to guarantee stable funding, and protect principles of accessibility, quality, academic freedom, public administration and not-for-profit delivery
  2. Increasing post-secondary education transfers to provinces and territories
  3. Measures to halt further privatization of education
  4. Reducing tuition fees by working in collaboration with provincial governments
  5. Relieving student debt through needs-based grants, maintaining low interest rates for student loans, and simplifying student aid programs; and
  6. Supporting literacy programs and adult education and training.

3.3 Early Childhood Education

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Providing long-term, secure funding to provinces and territories for early childhood education and child care services
  2. Ensuring federal funding provides high-quality, accessible, affordable, non-profit universal services
  3. Establishing an enhanced and simplified child tax benefit
  4. Expanding access to parental leave
  5. Encouraging employers and employees to develop work-life balance policies; and
  6. Establishing a law which will protect childcare by enshrining it in legislation, with a Canadian Early Childhood Learning and Care Act – to be a cornerstone of Canada, like the Canada Health Act.

3.4 Fighting Poverty

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Increasing the Canada Social Transfer to the provinces and territories to enhance welfare programs
  2. Launching an action plan with short and long-term objectives to eliminate poverty in Canada
  3. Meeting Canada’s objective to eliminate child poverty within ten years; and
  4. Prohibiting discrimination based on poverty and economic position.

3.5 Housing

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Supporting social and cooperative housing, in cooperation with all levels of government
  2. Adopting specific strategies to address homelessness, with special attention to the needs of Aboriginal peoples
  3. Assisting low-income households to improve household energy efficiency; and
  4. Ensuring accessibility standards for all forms of disability are met in social housing.

3.6 Employment Insurance

New Democrats believe in:
  1. A protected fund for Employment Insurance to protect workers
  2. Expanding access to EI by reducing the hours of work required to qualify
  3. Improving EI by abolishing waiting periods, calculating benefits based on the twelve best weeks of work, expanding eligibility to self-employed workers, and improving sickness and injury benefits
  4. Eliminating discriminatory rules, including geographical restrictions; and
  5. Directing a portion of the fund to training and skills development.

3.7 Seniors and Retiree

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Maintaining the universality of Old Age Security (OAS) and increasing funding for the Guaranteed Section 3 - Investing in a Canada Where No One is Left Behind 9 Income Supplement (GIS)
  2. Ensuring automatic eligibility for OAS and GIS recipients to ensure seniors receive the benefits to which they are entitled
  3. Mandating the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Investment Board to invest a portion of their assets in developing Canadian businesses and in socially responsible enterprise
  4. Ensuring workers and retirees participate on private pension management boards; and
  5. Creating an ombudsman for seniors.

3.8 Justice and Crime Prevention

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Investing in crime prevention, focussing on at-risk youth and gangs
  2. Supporting community and not-for-profit organizations active in crime prevention
  3. Emphasizing rehabilitation and reintegration wherever possible, particularly for treating addictions
  4. Supporting restorative justice initiatives including redress and restitution whenever possible
  5. Safeguarding the rights, health, and dignity of prisoners
  6. Adapting sentencing rules to allow, under judicial discretion, for more severe sentences for violent crimes
  7. Maintaining a youth criminal justice system that is distinct from adult courts
  8. Strengthening rules for sentencing dangerous offenders; and
  9. Prohibiting any reinstatement of the death penalty.

3.9 Enforcement, Policing, and Safer Communities

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Increasing the number of RCMP officers
  2. Providing the RCMP with adequate resources and improve coordination of police forces to address organized crime, gang activities, and white-collar and cyber crimes
  3. Reforming the administration of the RCMP and strengthen mechanisms for complaints and accountability
  4. Stopping the smuggling of illegal firearms and enable all municipalities, provinces, and territories to implement a ban on handguns
  5. Promoting local education and crime prevention, with well-resourced community policing
  6. Ending racial profiling and cancelling measures such as the Anti-Terrorism Act, which arbitrarily restrict the freedom of Canadian citizens
  7. Enhancing oversight of all federal intelligence agencies by parliamentarians
  8. Reinstating the Court Challenges Program; and
  9. Decriminalizing marijuana possession with the goal of removing its production and distribution from the control of organized crime.

3.10 Victims’ and Communities’ Rights

New Democrats believe in:
  1. Strengthening victims’ rights to protect their personal safety
  2. Establishing a fund for victims’ support, to be financed in part by the proceeds of crime; and
  3. Investing in a special fund to assist high-crime communities.

Abbotsford NDP Candidate David Murray with Ed Broadbent at Halifax convention
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twitter: davidmurray4ndp

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