moved for leave to introduce Bill C-318, An Act to amend the Employment Insurance Act (self-employed artists and authors).
Mr. Speaker, this is another bill whose time has passed and should be in place.
The purpose of the enactment would be to allow self-employed artists and authors to participate in the employment insurance scheme and obtain such advantages as maternity, parental and sickness benefits and access to publicly funded training programs.
This is a group of people who typically earn very little wages and are unemployed, not just periodically, but often in any given year and when they are not employed they need access to training, re-training and upgrading. They also need to look after themselves and their families when they get sick.
Without the artists and authors, how would we capture the story that is Canada, those wonderful pictures, both in books and on canvas that these people put before us that we come to appreciate and which serve us so well.
I think it is time that we as a government moved to protect the well-being, the income and the families of these very important professionals in every one of our communities.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)