Friday, May 11, 2007

TILMA: Canada West Foundation and Canadian Federation of Independent Business misleading people when they omit important facts

The following letter to the editor of the National Post was submitted today in response to the May 11, 2007, article Trade deal seen as boon or 'end of world' by NP columnist Kevin Libin.

Dear Editor:

Re: Trade deal seen as boon or 'end of world', Kevin Libin, May 11

The Canada West Foundation and Canadian Federation of Independent Business continue to mislead people about the impact the Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement (TILMA) will have on communities.

The article states that TILMA exempts non-profit corporations, regulations governing water, taxation and standards for health and social services.

What the CWF and CFIB don’t say though is that the exemptions listed in TILMA are subject to annual review “with a view to reducing their scope.” The list is meant to shrink over time not to expand.

TILMA’s negative impact goes far beyond the exemptions mentioned in the article. Also at risk are measures related to Aboriginal peoples, labour standards and codes; minimum wages; employment insurance; social assistance benefits and worker’s compensation; regulated rates established for the public good or public interest; compensation to persons for losses resulting from calamities such as diseases or disasters; assistance for book and magazine publishers, sound recordings, and film development, production and distribution; assistance for recreation, academic research and environmental measures relating to hazardous and waste materials.

It’s time people were told the truth about TILMA.

Joe Kuchta


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