Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Paul Manly says that he’s looking for the Liberals to back up their speech from the throne with action.
“There’s a lot of criticism of the government for proroguing parliament, and coming back with a speech from the throne that is filled with things that they’ve promised in the past,” Manly said. “We want to see solid action rather than just talk.”
Manly said that the throne speech did contain some things that he liked, such as a national framework on standards in long-term care facilities.
“We’ve seen such a disaster in long-term care facilities. We are lucky in Nanaimo-Ladysmith that we escaped that, and didn’t see the spread of COVID-19 in long-term care facilities,” Manly said.
Manly tabled a petition with 2,500 signatures, calling for national standards for long-term care, in the House of Commons following the Speech from the Throne.
The petition calls for a standardized system of pay and benefits for workers in long term care, a ban on for-profit long-term care facilities, and strong penalties for facilities that do not comply with national regulations.
Another item Manly was happy to see was a commitment to move forward with community-led policing for First Nations. Three of the four First Nations with communities in the Nanaimo-Ladysmith riding: Snuneymuxw, Stz’uminus, and Snaw’naw’as, have repeatedly raised concerns about the quality and quantity of policing they are currently receiving.
“There are really good models for Indigenous policing. I’m glad to see that mentioned in the speech,” Manly said.
However, Manly wanted to see a commitment to implement the UN Declaration of Rights on Indigenous Peoples, and an urban housing strategy for Indigenous people.
Manly’s chief concern is action on climate change. The throne speech said that the Liberals will reduce greehouse gas emissions to 30 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. They have also laid out plans for retrofitting homes and businesses to higher environmental standards. Manly believes that the government should pursue bold action and take further steps on these issues.
“That’s an easy win on climate for reducing emissions, and reducing energy cost for homeowners, businesses, and renters,” Manly said. “It should be extended to landlords, municipalities, and other institutions like hospitals.”
Manly also criticized the Liberals for not doing enough to support students.
“We had this WE scandal. $900 million was supposed to go towards helping students… there’s nothing in here for students. There are still gaps. And there are a lot of people who weren’t eligible for CERB based on circumstances that were beyond their control,” Manly said.
The Throne Speech did say that the Liberals were targetting the wealthiest Canadians
When asked whether he would vote against the throne speech and risk triggering a fall election, Manly said that the Green Party does not hold the balance of power in parliament, and that the survival of the government was dependent on the support of the NDP.
On Friday, September 25, the Liberals and NDP came to an agreement on increasing the number of Canadians with access to 10-day sick leave, skirting the prospect of a fall election – which would have been Manly’s third since May 2019.