Mr. Speaker, yesterday after pressure from the opposition, the government announced that it would be introducing a program to help low income Canadians and seniors with the high cost of heating their homes this winter. The minister said that the package is heavily geared toward helping the most vulnerable within society.
The last time the Liberals tried such a rebate program it was slammed by the Auditor General because some 16,000 prisoners, dead people, and Canadians living outside Canada received the cheques.
According to the minister, this time the rebate program will be tied to individuals who are eligible for child benefits and seniors who qualify for the GIS. According to a report issued this week by the National Advisory Council on Aging, we know that there are in excess of 300,000 seniors in Canada who are eligible for the GIS who do not receive it. How will they get the rebate?
In addition, there are thousands of low income Canadians who live alone and do not receive any child benefits. How will they get the rebate? The fact is that none of these rebates will reach the Canadians who need it most and they will be forced in many cases to choose this winter between eating or staying warm.