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Provincial and territorial finance ministers have an important choice to make: do they want to tackle this country’s retirement income security crisis in a way that will benefit all Canadians, or are they going to follow the federal governments lead and continue with an option that only benefit banks and the finance industry? 

This is the discussion that needs to take place when Canada’s finance ministers meet in Victoria next week. While federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty continues to tout his private pooled pension scheme, it is vitally important for his provincial and territorial counterparts to push for a vastly more efficient, effective and substantive response to help the over 11 million Canadians without a workplace pension.

Leading up to this meeting I sent letters to all the finance ministers urging them to take real action on expanding the Canada Pension Plan. Now is the time for them to show real leadership on reforming our public pensions.

CUPE is working to make sure all finance ministers know how vital expanding the CPP is for all Canadians and future generations. Wayne Lucas, president of CUPE Newfoundland and Labrador, has a meeting with his provinces finance minister to shore up support, and CUPE is also supporting CLC efforts through its “Retirement Security for Everyone” campaign.

All finance ministers must recognize Canadians have a right to a secure income in retirement. CUPE will continue to work with them and all Canadians to achieve this through an expanded CPP