Mr. Speaker, the Liberal government is apparently on the verge of announcing a drastic reduction in coast guard services on Lake Winnipeg, the tenth largest lake in the world. The plan to de-commission the Numao and the Avocet and to downsize the coast guard facility in Selkirk demonstrates a unique combination of gall and shortsightedness.
In public hearings held last year the government was told time and again by the affected communities that Manitoba needs better, not fewer, coast guard services and that the services now being provided were both essential and appreciated.
The Liberals have caught the downsizing disease from large corporations and the result is a decline in the quality of essential public services and a loss of jobs that is deeply wounding to Selkirk, Gimli and other communities all around the country.
The NDP calls on the government to reconsider its plans and preserve this useful public service. Leave the boats in service. Public safety and public protection should be a top priority.