moved for leave to introduce Bill C-338, An Act to amend the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (termination and severance pay).
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to stand in the House today to introduce my severance protection bill.
As we found out, since 2008 a lot of companies are struggling, which means that a lot of workers and their families are struggling. When companies close their doors, what happens to workers in this country is that their severance pay is unsecured when those bankruptcy proceedings occur.
This is a very simple, straightforward bill with only one clause and it would elevate the status of those payments from unsecured to preferred. My old bill from the last Parliament, Bill C-501, has now been taken over by my friend from Hamilton. I am very glad that the pension part will also be taken care of. This is the severance part.
I want to let everyone in the House know that this is not a political statement. It is a measured and effective proposal that could help workers who are owed money during bankruptcy proceedings. It would do so without disrupting capital markets or negatively affecting the borrowing costs of struggling companies. It would also fulfill a promise that I made to workers from Buchanan Forest Products and others in my riding and, indeed, workers right across this country, that we would protect their severance when their companies go bankrupt.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)