Mr. Speaker, the Iroquois Falls paper mill has been the jewel in the crown of Abitibi for 100 years. Even as AbitibiBowater totters under bankruptcy protection, this mill continues to turn a profit.
Yet, retirees who have spent their entire lives paying into the pension fund are now finding that their pensions are being cut or suspended altogether.
I spoke today with a man who had 35 years of service before he was let go. Then his severance was cut off which left him with no income whatsoever.
Economic restructuring cannot be done on the backs of workers and retirees. All across Canada our pension plans are under attack, whether its Abitibi, Nortel or Air Canada. On top of that, millions of Canadians have not set aside any pension funds whatsoever despite working hard.
There is a pension crisis in this country and we have a government that is completely asleep at the switch.
We need to reform the federal bankruptcy laws to put workers first and not last. We need an overhaul of the Canada pension plan, and finally, we need a government that is willing to stand up for workers, retirees and seniors citizens in this country.