Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table two petitions today from my riding of Hamilton Mountain signed by residents who are profoundly worried and dismayed by the Conservative government's inaction on poverty reduction.
While the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development has rejected calls to develop a comprehensive and measurable poverty reduction strategy, the petitioners see hope in the NDP's Bill C-545, An Act to Eliminate Poverty in Canada. With nearly 3.5 million Canadians living below the low income cut-off, including 800,000 children growing up in poverty, it is time to show leadership.
The petitioners know that poverty is linked to poor health outcomes, social exclusion and lower life expectancy. They also know that poverty impedes the economic and social development of society as a whole. For all of these reasons, the petitioners call on Parliament to give swift passage to Bill C-545 and begin the implementation of a strategy for poverty elimination immediately.
I know the rules of this chamber do not allow me to endorse a petition but let me just conclude by saying that I am absolutely delighted to have had the opportunity to table this one in the House today.