Mr. Speaker, it is always a challenge for social services during a downturn. There is no doubt about it.
Ironically, with this budget the Conservative government is actually reducing what we can get on a return for a charitable donation. Because the Conservatives have tied it to the income tax bracket, what has happened is that the for amount of money we give to charities we are going to get less back this year than we did last year. The government has not decoupled that. Basically what it is going to do to Canadians is that as we give to charity, we are going to get less back, so it is a double whammy.
I can say that when it comes to our city and area we also have been hurt by the thickening of the Canada-U.S. border. We have witnessed a loss in trade for some of the tourism as well as some of the other activities for which Americans came over to Canada. They would visit and partake not only in the lifestyles but also in commerce and social functions. That has actually put other charities at risk. That is a shame.
I have a private member's bill that actually looks at reforming the charitable tax act of Canada. I wish the government would adopt that as opposed to a general corporate tax cut, because that would put more money back in people's pockets and more money into charities and not for profit organizations such as the United Way and the VON, which do good work for Canadians as opposed to having that money sent overseas.