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CUPE Saskatchewan has told the province’s tax review committee the drive to cut taxes is essentially an attack on governments and the public services they provide.

“The business lobby wants to further reduce the ability of governments to redistribute wealth in society and provide social programs,” said Tom Graham, president of the Saskatchewan Division.

In a presentation to the hearing, Graham said the debate over tax cuts has been extremely one-sided.

“Taxes are what we pay in exchange for a broad range of services that most working people would never be able to afford if they had to pay directly for these services through the private market,” he said.

“Our level of taxation is directly related to the kind of society we want, and what services we have decided to provide collectively.”

Rejecting the notion of a flat tax and calling on the province to fund a greater share of education costs to relieve pressure on the property tax, Graham argued, “Tax cuts will disproportionately benefit the rich and increase the inequality between rich and poor in this country. More of the costs for public programs will be shifted to individuals because governments will not be able to sustain funding for social programs.”