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OTTAWA Welcome to the era of weak federalism, said CUPE National President Paul Moist in reaction to todays speech from the throne.

This speech ushers in a new era of weak federalism that wont win Martin support from workers and the public, Moist said. On health care, child care, cities and aboriginal issues, theres absolutely no sense of urgency to really respond to the challenges we face.

Instead we have a federal government that gives money to provinces and territories without requiring enforcement, monitoring or accountability it wont work, the CUPE leader added.

For example, the recent and much lauded health care agreement is a weak model that is now poised to spread to other social policy areas.

A smart government acting on Canadians priorities could win support for Martins minority government, Moist said. Weak federalism will not.

Child care

  • Where is the campaign promise of giving all Canadians access to a quality, affordable national child care system?
  • Liberals promised a pan-Canadian system building on what Quebec already has regulated, high quality, publicly funded child care at a maximum cost of $7 a day per child. The throne speech delivers more talk and unaccountable federal cash-transfers. This hasn’t worked yet, and it won’t work in the future.
  • Canadians need a federally funded not-for-profit pan-Canadian child care program that gives all children a head start.


  • Paul Martins New Deal for cities spreads $2.5 billion over five years. This is a weak response to the urgent needs of our communities.
  • CUPE supports the hub-city mayors call for five cents per litre of the gas tax by the end of 2007, not 2009. They didnt get it. Meanwhile, the infrastructure deficit at the municipal level is growing by $2 billion a year.


Paul Moist, CUPE national president, cell (613) 558 2873,
Claude Gnreux, CUPE national secretary-treasurer (porte-parole francophone) cell (613) 794 8395,
David Robbins, CUPE communications, cell (613) 878 1431