Unifor applauds NDP auto spending announcement
Federal NDP reveal $90 million spending pledge for automotive manufacturing sector.
TORONTO — Canada’s largest private sector union is applauding the federal NDP’s pledge to several auto sector measures to support the industry, including a $90 million spending commitment for the federal automotive supplier innovation program.
“It is time this country had a government that recognizes the importance of the auto sector, the many jobs it creates and the opportunities it offers our young people,” said Jerry Dias, president of Unifor.
“Industry leaders have spoken for years about the need for a clear, consistent national auto strategy, but the Harper Conservatives have failed to develop one.”
NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, at an auto parts plant in Welland, Ont., announced measures to increase investment in the auto industry, boost research and development and plans to call an auto summit of government, business and labour leaders after the election.
“The auto sector is absolutely vital to the future success of Canada’s economy,” Dias said. “Our industry has suffered from the lack of a well-planned, consistent, and effective national auto strategy.”
The auto industry is essential to growing the Canadian economy, noting that every job in a major auto plant creates nine more in the broader economy – in everything from parts suppliers to the shops and services where auto workers spend their wages, he added.
“The Harper Government drove us into recession with its disastrous economic policies. It is refreshing to see the NDP committing to building a strong and diversified economy.”
Dias, who began his working life at the Bombardier Aerospace plant in Downsview, said the auto policy, in combination with an aerospace policy announced by the NDP Sept. 8, shows the importance of manufacturing is gaining the recognition it deserves.
“Earlier this month, it was confirmed that Canada has been in recession. Federal strategies for auto and aerospace can help pull us out.”