Today is International Women’s Day. NDP Caucus members seized the opportunity to ask government for commitments on several key issues. NDP Critic for the Status of Women Gerry Rogers led off questioning with a return to an issue she has championed for years.
“This being International Women’s Day, I ask the Minister of Children Seniors and Social Development once again, will she commit to a portable rent subsidy program for seniors so these senior women can live in dignity and security?” said Rogers.
She also asked about intimate partner violence, which is increasingly encroaching on workplaces. Rogers noted that unions and women’s groups are working with governments across the country to establish paid domestic violence leave, which would allow women the time they need to deal with police, lawyers, or find a new place to live without the additional fear of losing their jobs.
“Will the Minister of Service NL commit to supporting legislation that allows for paid domestic violence leave?” she asked.
St. John’s East-Quidi Vidi MHA Lorraine Michael highlighted the need for a public, affordable and accessible child care program, then asked government about minimum wage.
“Women hold the majority of precarious, contract and minimum wage jobs. Our province has one of the lowest minimum wages in the country and did not keep up with inflation from 2010 to 2015,” said Michael.
“On International Women’s Day, I ask the Premier, whatever the results of the minimum wage consultations, will he commit to a ‘catch-up’ of workers’ purchasing power since 2010 as the base for indexation?”