moved for leave to introduce Bill C-420, An Act to amend the Employment Insurance Act (special benefits).
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce a bill to amend the Employment Insurance Act regarding sick benefits to increase them from 15 weeks to 30 weeks.
This issue was brought to my attention by a woman in my community named Natalie Thomas who was recovering from breast cancer surgery and treatment. Although she had not fully recovered from the treatment she had been given, she was forced to return to work because her benefits had ended. This is entirely unacceptable.
People recovering from a serious illness should not have to be so worried about paying their bills that they are forced to return to work before they have fully recovered and are healthy.
Before this Parliament we now have eight private members' bills to extend employment insurance benefits and another 11 that would amend the act. Clearly, there is a problem with employment insurance, something that the government should get busy on and fix. Change is needed. I am pleased to introduce this bill and ask that all members of the House support it.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)