Mr. Speaker, my colleague is absolutely right. When it comes to industrial policy in the country, we saw a manufacturer that was making money and a union that bargained a collective agreement that took into consideration where the dollar was heading, which was an upward spiral at the time, to ensure the company would remain profitable.
The workers, by the company's own admission, were the best in North America. That is what the CEO told me. Yet at the first opportunity, the plant was moved, lock, stock and barrel, to Mexico, minus the hoops of one barrel on its way past Wisconsin. It simply dropped off there. It laid off 800 workers in Welland from a place that had been there for almost 100 years. It was nearing its 100th anniversary. It was well known and well renowned for its quality, craftsmanship, price and competitiveness, but that was left behind.
That multinational corporation walked away from the community because we lacked an industrial policy that spoke to those corporations in a meaningful way, a policy that told them they must adhere to the rules of the game in Canada and that they could not simply walk away because they thought they could.
That was the unfortunate eventuality for those John Deere workers who had never been laid off. In fact, in our region it was one of only a few bright spots. It was hiring folks nine months before the closure announcement.
It is regrettable we do not have an industrial policy that ensures those sorts of things do not happen. However, notwithstanding it has now happened, we need to ensure we have protection for those workers so they are covered by employment insurance. We need to ensure, as they head into uncertain times, that they will be covered, that they will be protected and that they will be able to stay in their communities and continue to raise their families in those communities that they so cherish.