Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for her question.
We are thankful for the contributions of our seniors to our communities, workplaces and families. Therefore, I am pleased to have the opportunity to remind my colleague of all that the Government of Canada has done for seniors.
Our government has been working for seniors since the day we were elected and we continue to take concrete measures to improve the retirement security of Canadians and ensure seniors can enjoy the fulfilling retirement they so very much deserve.
Preventing seniors from falling into poverty is high on the government's list of priorities. This includes acting on issues like income security and housing.
One of the first things we did was to restore the age of eligibility for old age security and the guaranteed income supplement to 65, keeping 100,000 seniors out of poverty. In addition, we boosted the GIS by close to $1,000 a year for vulnerable seniors who live on their own, which is improving financial security for almost 900,000 seniors. In fact, over 4,000 seniors in my riding of Longueuil—Charles-LeMoyne are benefiting from this increase.
As we all know, living a full and healthy life goes beyond financial stability. Through our health accord, we invested $6 billion into home care and palliative care, because we knew seniors wanted to remain in their homes. We have also improved EI caregiver benefits to make it easier for Canadians to care for a family member in need.
Through budget 2019, the government is making new investments to help make retirement more financially secure for Canadians. It proposes legislative changes to the Canada pension plan that will ensure Canadian retirees receive the full value of their pension. Starting in 2020, we will proactively register CPP contributors aged 70 and above who have not yet applied for their retirement benefits.
In budget 2019, we propose to enhance the GIS earnings exemption so seniors who wish to work can take home more of their hard-earned income.
Budget 2019 also proposes to introduce new measures to safeguard the security of workplace pensions in the event of corporate insolvency.
No senior should have to choose between paying for their medication and paying for groceries. That is why, in budget 2019, we proposed concrete steps toward the implementation of national pharmacare, helping Canadians with the cost of prescription drugs by creating the Canada drug agency and starting development of a national formulary.
As well, the national housing strategy will reduce the number of seniors in need of housing through the new $13 billion national housing co-investment fund. The fund is expected to create at least 7,000 new affordable housing units and will support much needed renovations, including improved accessibility to allow seniors to age in their communities.
The government's mandate for seniors aims to promote healthy aging and social inclusion. Currently, the new horizons for seniors program is helping to fulfill this goal. It provides funding for community-based projects of up to $25,000 per year, per organization or a new small grant of a maximum of $5,000.
The program also supports larger projects across the country with funding of up to $5 million for a maximum period of five years to improve social inclusion of seniors.
These measures are part of our long-term vision, which is to strengthen the middle class, promote sustainable growth for Canadians, and lift a greater number of Canadians, including seniors, out of poverty.
We have clearly demonstrated our commitment to improving the quality of life of Canadian seniors and we will continue to work hard for them.