Key sectors of big capital, including oil and gas corporations, the big banks and foreign global corporate interests, have benefitted from the policies of the Harper government, to the detriment of the working class, the poor, the youth, women, aboriginal people, LGBTQ, immigrants and refugees, people of colour, farmers and small business. It is time to halt and reverse this right-wing agenda.
The Communist Party calls on Canadians to turf the fascist-leaning Harper regime. Bill C51 can label as "terrorists" anyone or any group that interferes with the economy or finances of Canada. That may include Aboriginal peoples and environmentalists who try to stop pipelines or tankers, or even trade unionists who go on strike against their bosses. This police state legislation must be scrapped completely. Some parties in this election call for judicial oversight, but there can be none in a police state.
As a Communist candidate in Vancouver East, I want real action to tackle the homelessness, unemployment, drug addiction, and mental illness in this riding where I live, and especially in the Downtown Eastside, the poorest urban postal code in Canada. Our party calls for an emergency plan to build low-income and social housing, involving all levels of government.
As a retired hospital worker and former trade unionist, I heartily support our platform to increase federal funding to expand Medicare to include pharmacare, dental care and eyecare. Our program calls for federal funding of expanded social services, not more charity. We call for creation of full time, meaningful, living wage, green jobs. That would include domestic processing of resources (not exports of fossil fuels), building an electric car and public transit vehicle industry, using renewable energy. We would reverse privatization, contracting out and deregulation. Instead, our platform calls for nationalization of natural resources and the banks, putting them under democratic control as a pathway to our socialist future.
Where would we get the money in the meantime? From those with the ability to pay: the rich, big corporations, and the major financial institutions, not from those unable to pay. We would scrap the agencies that spy on us (CSIS and CSEC), and cut 75% of the $20 billion military budget which finances imperialist wars on behalf of big capital.
We call for a Labour Bill of Rights to guarantee the rights to organize, take job action, and bargain collectively. We would ban strike breaking and right to work laws, and support the struggles for good wages, working conditions, benefits and schedules for all workers. Our policy is to pull out of so-called "free trade" agreements which move jobs to low-wage areas of the world. Deals like NAFTA, CETA and the Trans-Pacific Partnership put us under the thumb of global capital, which can sue elected governments for any interference in the pursuit of profits, by going to international corporate tribunals that are totally outside any national democratic control.
The Harper Tories are moving toward a completely corporate controlled state. The other parties offer a patchwork of mild reforms, such as $15 minimum wage or low cost child care. The Communist Party supports any reforms which improve the lives of working people, in fact we were the first to campaign for Medicare, unemployment insurance and pensions. But only our party has a comprehensive platform to challenge the agenda of austerity and war. While the others have drifted in a right direction, tailing the Tories, our trajectory is toward socialism.