The NDP Caucus says government’s April 1 minimum wage increase of 15 cents an hour does nothing to lift full time minimum wage earners above the poverty line.

 

The NDP Caucus says the doubling up of ministerial portfolios is shortchanging the people of the province as urgent matters continue regarding strained labour relations and cuts to post-secondary education.

 

NDP Leader and Health Critic Gerry Rogers is celebrating the essential contributions of nurses to our health care system during National Nursing Week, May 7-13, while echoing the Registered Nurses’ Union’s comments that we need a provincial approach to deal with violence against health care workers.

 

NDP Leader Gerry Rogers will visit the locked out D-J Composites workers in Gander on the picket line today. Rogers will meet with workers at 1:30 p.m.

Rogers says yesterday marked 500 days that these workers have been locked out.

 

The NDP Leader has written to the Speaker of the House of Assembly to request that the House Management Commission convene a special meeting on the inadequacy of the Code of Conduct, as well as undertake developing a comprehensive anti-harassment policy that is tailored specifically for elected officials, caucuses, and political staff.

 

NDP Leader Gerry Rogers says the Minister must take action to amend the Labour Relations Act so that binding arbitration would be triggered in situations where a company is found to be bargaining in bad faith. Rogers (MHA, St. John’s Centre) says the lock-out of D-J Composites workers in Gander has gone on for 16 months with no end in sight.

 

The lack of an affordable public child care program is the focus of NDP Education Critic Lorraine Michael’s questions in the House of Assembly this week. Michael (MHA, St. John’s East-Quidi Vidi) says half a century of royal commissions, task forces, and government white papers have recognized that closing the gender wage gap requires universal affordable child care.

 

NDP Leader Gerry Rogers is concerned about the critical shortage of jobs and government’s lack of a job strategy. Rogers (MHA, St. John’s Centre) says the real unemployment rate in Newfoundland and Labrador is heading for 20 per cent, the highest in the country.

“There is a looming jobs crisis and without a proactive strategy there is no immediate relief in sight,” Rogers said.

 

NDP Leader and Education Critic Lorraine Michael is questioning how making cuts to Memorial University can be part of government’s plan to invest in the future of Newfoundland and Labrador and retain young, skilled people in the province.

 

NDP Leader Lorraine Michael says today’s provincial budget fails to address the realities that people in this province are facing such as poverty, income inequality, outmigration, and the lack of a job creation strategy – problems that will get worse with inaction.

 

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