HOUSE OF COMMONS SET TO RESUME: Masse returns to Industry Portfolio with Immediate Focus on Automotive and Manufacturing Crisis

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 17, 2008

HOUSE OF COMMONS SET TO RESUME: Masse returns to Industry Portfolio with Immediate Focus on Automotive and Manufacturing Crisis

OTTAWA, ON- Windsor West MP Brian Masse will once again return to the House of Commons as the NDP Industry Critic (including Canada-U.S. Border & Customs Critic) this week when Parliament resumes. Masse will pay immediate attention to the automotive and manufacturing industries and getting federal support for these sectors.

“It’s clear in these devastating economic times that a shift needs to be made and supports need to be put into place to help our ailing domestic automotive and manufacturing industries. The Harper government has continually ignored our workers and their families, and only now when we’re in a crisis, have they decided that these industries should get some form of help,” Masse stated.

Since his election in 2002, Masse has repeatedly called for an automotive policy for Canada. Despite promises by former Liberal and then Conservative Cabinet Minister David Emerson that Canadians would see an auto policy by the end of 2005, neither party in government has released a Canadian automotive policy to protect workers and their families from job losses unlike all of our competitors from Australia to South Korea to the United States.

“Federal government neglect has resulted in the devastating situation that we’re in today. We’re in a new energy economy now which will require changes to our policies. New Democrats put forward a national auto strategy in 2002, and then the NDP Green Car Strategy in 2003, both of which would have brought these new green jobs and cars,” declared Masse. “Now, five and six years later, the Harper government has stated that our domestic auto makers will need to meet certain environmental standards as set out by this government in order to get financial help in these difficult and still dynamic times. Even in this new energy economy, we have to act swiftly and deliver results to Canadian auto and manufacturing workers and their families who have been left helpless by successive governments.”

Masse has re-introduced his former motion, supported by the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW), calling for Parliament to strike a committee to study the manufacturing industry, including the automotive sector and to make several recommendations and act on them (attached). He is also committed to ensuring that the Industry Committee brings their 2007 Manufacturing Report back to Parliament for consideration and implementation of the recommendations to help our Canadian industries, workers and their families.

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For more information please contact: Office of Brian Masse 519-255-1631 or 613-996-1541