As 2018 begins and we look to the year ahead, it is also important to look back on the past year. 2017 was Canada’s 150th birthday; a time to reflect on what we have achieved in our history, and to celebrate the values we share as a nation.
Canada 150 inspired all of us to be part of something bigger than ourselves, and to imagine a bold vision of what our country could become. Although 2017 and Canada 150 have come to a close, in 2018 we continue working towards that big bold vision as we build our country for the next 150 years.
NEW YEAR’S LEVEE! – JANUARY 20
Join my team and me on January 20 from 1-3 pm at my office (12820 Yonge Street, Suite 202, in Richmond Hill) to celebrate the New Year with friends and family at our New Year’s Levee! Come enjoy hot chocolate and treats, I look forward to seeing you there! (Please contact my office beforehand if you have accessibility needs so that we can best accommodate you.)
We still have much work ahead of us, but here are some highlights of what our government has accomplished this past year:
Jobs – Our government is working hard to support workers and their families. With the creation of nearly 600,000 jobs since October 2015, the unemployment rate has dropped to its lowest point in almost a decade, and we are making it easier for people to access the benefits and training they need while they look for work.
Small Business – Small businesses comprise more than 70 per cent of private employment and 30 per cent of Canada’s GDP. Our government is giving small businesses an opportunity to grow and succeed by lowering the small business tax from 11% in 2015, 10% in 2018 to 9% by 2019.
Middle Class – The Canada Child Benefit has been strengthened to make sure it keeps pace with the rising costs of living, by making annual increases starting July 2018 – two years ahead of schedule. We are also improving access to Employment Insurance by eliminating the higher EI eligibility requirements that have restricted access for people who are working to enter or return to the labour market.
Youth – It is important that young Canadians have the opportunities they need to succeed. Our government has made significant investments to position Canadian youth to achieve their goals. Our government nearly doubled the number of students who gained summer employment through the Canada Summer Jobs program to create over 30,000 more jobs for youth than in previous years.
Transit – Our government made a historic $28.7 billion investment in public transit systems, to provide more buses, and expand light rail transit and subway lines across the country including the Yonge Line subway extension north of Finch, to help Canadians get around faster and keep the air we breathe cleaner.
In addition to supporting the priorities of our government, my responsibility as your Member of Parliament is to bring the concerns and suggestions from you, the citizens of Aurora-Oak Ridges- Richmond Hill, to Ottawa. Many of you have informed me that you would like me to place particular focus on the following areas:
Precarious employment – work to increase not only the quantity, but also the quality of jobs and availability of skills training with a focus on youth.
Defence and security – ensure that the Canadian Armed Forces are equipped and prepared, to protect Canadian sovereignty, defend North America, support United Nations peace operations, and contribute to the strength of our alliances, and the security of our allies and coalition operations abroad.
Tax reform and government accountability – investigate ways to simplify and reform the tax process, and enhance efficiency and information sharing between federal government departments as well as transparency and accountability of government service delivery.
Public transit and infrastructure – invest in communities including Aurora-Oak Ridges- Richmond Hill, to shorten commute times, cut air pollution, strengthen our communities, and grow our economy.
If there are other priorities you would like our government to focus, please let me know…
Contact Me! I look forward to hearing from you and trust that you will contact me with any matters that you feel are important at a federal level. Email: Leona.Alleslev@parl.gc.ca. Phone: 905-773-8358. Office: 12820 Yonge St., Suite 202, Richmond Hill.