Madam Speaker, I will stay the course because this is important. There are some good measures in Bill C‑2. Some are measures that the Bloc Québécois itself proposed last spring.
After the worst of the crisis, we need to think about recovery. We need to move on to support measures that are much more targeted and much more tailored to the economic reality and the post-pandemic recovery. We must therefore focus on measures that particularly, but not exclusively, support the tourism, accommodation, food service, events and hospitality industries. I think these are good, well-targeted measures.
In addition, as my colleague from Joliette said, these are predictable measures that will allow businesses to plan ahead until May 2022. There is also the two-week extension of the Canada recovery sickness benefit and caregiving benefits. I think it is good to continue these measures in the current context.
However, some measures that are essential have not yet been considered. They were mentioned repeatedly in today's debate, and my colleague from Drummond spoke eloquently about them. I am referring to measures for the arts and culture sector.
The government will say that it intends to support this sector. The problem is that the majority of people in this sector are self-employed, no matter their line of work. We must think not just of the artists, but of all the workers in the performing arts and live arts. There are many of them.
We know that self-employed workers cannot access the regular EI system. These workers are not in a complete lockdown. However, as I was saying, they are at the end of the road in terms of work. The recovery is difficult, and they may not necessarily be getting work. Furthermore, some skilled workers have decided to switch careers, so we could be facing a labour shortage in future.
These workers still need support. They are not entitled to EI, so until yesterday, they were receiving the Canada recovery benefit. However, there is a void in Bill C‑2, which contains no measures for the many workers in this sector.
There are two kinds of solutions.
The first is a solution that we are still waiting for, since the government still does not appear to have understood that all of the emergency measures were put in place for one reason: Our employment insurance system has faults and is not comprehensive enough to cover the many 21st-century workers who are self-employed or non-standard, the majority of whom are women and young people. A meaningful measure would be to reform the EI system as soon as possible. However, there is no indication in the throne speech or the government's messaging that it plans to do so.
The second solution would be to address the needs of this category of workers by including them in Bill C‑2 and providing an effective assistance measure for them. It is unacceptable for the government to ignore them.
In conclusion, although the situation is urgent, we will insist on sending this bill to committee as quickly as possible, so that the committee has enough time to study it and, potentially, add measures or terms that will more specifically address the objective of the bill.
This feels like an acknowledgement. We had an election that the government claimed was to help us recover from the pandemic. In that case, we need to recover from this pandemic, and we need the minority government to work with the opposition parties on such an important bill to ensure that the pandemic measures are the right ones.
I do not know if the Canadian Federation of Independent Business representatives are right or wrong, but they are already saying the 40% to 50% subsidy rates are disappointing.
That is why it makes sense to ensure we have enough time to study these measures, get the committees up and running again and really give this our all and take a good, hard look at this bill.