moved for leave to introduce Bill C-413, An Act to amend the Employment Insurance Act and the Canada Labour Code (extension of benefit period for adoptive parents).
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased that my bill has been seconded by the brilliant member for Hamilton Mountain.
Many people are talking about the fact that so many Canadians do not have access to employment insurance even when they pay into the program. One group that does not have access to the full benefits that we would seek for equality for parents is adoptive parents.
Parents who go through the adoption process make a financial commitment and a wide range of other commitments, including time, to raise the children they have adopted, and yet the Employment Insurance Act still discriminates against them. It does not treat them the same as biological parents.
This bill would amend the Employment Insurance Act and the Canada Labour Code to extend the benefit period for adoptive parents so it is the same as already exists under the Employment Insurance Act for biological parents.
It is important to do this. Adoptive parents are making a huge commitment in time and effort to raise their adopted children. We have to make sure we provide the right support in the employment insurance program so that they can get off to the right start with their adopted children.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)