SCARBOROUGH – Salma Zahid, Member of Parliament for Scarborough Centre, held a roundtable meeting on Thursday to discuss how those working hard to reach the middle class in Scarborough are benefiting from a growing economy and investments by the federal government designed to help hard-working local families.
Held at Marché Adonis, a grocery store in Scarborough that provides good jobs that help to support local families, MP Zahid outlined the government’s progress on its plan to help grow the middle class and heard from Scarborough families how government policies are helping them.
“We have come a long way over the past two years and delivered real progress for people, including cutting taxes for the middle class and businesses, creating the Canada Child Benefit and enhancing the Canada Pension Plan,” said Zahid, noting the economy has created 450,000 net new jobs since October 2015, and Canada now has the fastest growing economy in the G7. “Our plan is working. And thanks to this economic growth, we’re able to make further investments to help ensure *all Canadians* benefit from the growing economy.”
Recent investments announced by the government include:
- Strengthening the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) to make sure it keeps pace with the rising cost of living, by making annual cost of living increases to the CCB starting in July 2018—two years ahead of schedule. For a single parent of two children making $35,000, a strengthened CCB will mean $560 more next year, tax free, for books, skating lessons or warm clothes for winter.
- Enhancing the Working Income Tax Benefit by an additional $500 million annually, in addition to $250 million annual increase that will come into effect as part of the Canada Pension Plan enhancement. Our enhancement will allow-income workers—including families without children and the growing number of single Canadians—to keep more hard-earned money from every paycheque
- Fulfilling our commitment to lower taxes on small businesses, from 11 per cent in 2015 to 9 per cent by 2019. This means up to $7,500 in federal corporate tax savings per year to help entrepreneurs and innovators do what they do best, and will give Canada one of the lowest small business tax rates in the world.
These are investments that will make a real difference in the lives of Scarborough families such as Sameer Ahmad and Mehmooda Sameer, who have three school-age children: Maliha, Yusra, and Abdullah. They are already benefiting from the tax-free CCB.
“With this money that we receive each month, we can spend it on our children, and provide them with better opportunities, such as tutoring classes for math help,” said Sameer Ahmad.
And for Camille Clyne, the enhanced CCB will mean her daughter Rachel can take part in activities like swim classes, and will also help with the costs of child care.
“As a single parent by choice, I wanted my daughter to be busy,” said Clyne. “The CCB has helped me as a mother tremendously.”
Zahid concluded when the middle class and those working hard to join it succeed, Canada succeeds. The choices made in 2015 are helping to grow the economy, and are making further investments possible. In contrast, the other parties in 2015 were focused on cuts.
“Our plan is working, and we will remain focused on ensuring those working hard to reach the middle class in Scarborough receive the support they need to succeed and prosper,” said Zahid.