Mr. Speaker, we know that the Minister of Human Resources Development has no compassion for children. I hope he does for older workers.
The Program for Older Worker Adjustment, funded jointly by the provinces and the federal government, helps older workers who are victims of mass layoffs. The federal government has informed the provinces that POWA will end on March 31, 1977. Ottawa will accept no new applications, but has agreed to honour its financial obligations in cases currently being processed.
Knowing that the workers of the Peerless company, considered eligible for the POWA program by the Canada-Quebec joint analysis committee, are still awaiting their benefits because Ottawa is refusing to release the funds, would the minister confirm that applications made by older workers between the announcement of
the government's withdrawal from this program and March 31, 1997 will be honoured?