Posted on Jun 5, 2020
HIGH UNEMPLOYMENT, FRAGILE ECONOMY NOT THE TIME FOR MORE CUTS: NDP
EDMONTON -- As Alberta faces a 15.5 per cent unemployment rate, now is not the time for more cuts.
The latest job figures from Statistics Canada revealed that Alberta gained 28,000 jobs in May, but a total of 333,000 Albertans are still unemployed since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While adding jobs is encouraging, our economy is still very fragile and Albertans are still suffering from the pandemic,” said Christina Gray, NDP Labour Critic. “Now is not the time for the UCP to continue with their deep cuts which are only making a bad situation worse.”
In a recent interview, Premier Jason Kenney repeated his claim that a “fiscal reckoning” is coming for Albertans and plans to make deeper cuts than initially planned pre-pandemic.
“Instead of doubling down on cuts that hurt the economy and which will lead to more job losses, this government should be investing in people, supporting small businesses, and diversifying our economy. That is the path to prosperity for our province,” said Gray.
The NDP have previously called for direct financial relief to small businesses, including a commercial eviction ban, as well as paid sick leave.
“Keeping Albertans healthy and financially secure would allow us to recover more quickly from the pandemic. Ending the UCP’s needless cuts and investing in Albertans would be good for workers, our economy, and the health of our province,” said Gray.