Ordinarily Canadians who retire before age 65 and choose to draw CPP early receive reduced benefits for the rest of their lives. That makes sense as they will not have paid in as much in premiums. The bridge benefit allows many government workers to claim their full pension early, penalty-free. If this seems rather unfair, that's because it is.
As merchants cannot charge different prices for cash, credit or debit payments and obviously price-in the interchange fee, those consumers using cash (e.g. those on fixed incomes such as the retired) are, in effect, paying a hidden fee. So reducing interchange fees as far as possible make sense. Or does it?
I get it, landing your first job can be a daunting task. There are a lot of voices these days -- family, friends, teachers and "specialists" -- telling you what you need to do. The one voice you rarely get a chance to hear from is that of the employers themselves. The good news is they're eager to share.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) has long been vocal about the limitations of these inter-provincial initiatives. We ask premiers to continue to show leadership on this file by renewing their commitment to deliver a modern, simple and effective AIT for Canadian small businesses by the end of 2016.
Employers are not "hooked" on temporary foreign workers because they provide critical skills on an emergency basis (as the program was intended) but because they work hard (and presumably for cheap). So who's to blame? It's time for management to look in the mirror. For the last 50 years organizations have invested in just about anything except their employees, who are increasingly treated as replaceable widgets. The federal government is also complicit. Why should employers bother to train, motivate and engage their workers when they can simply replace them with foreign "temporary" workers?
There's no free lunch in this world, and indeed, there's no free retirement. If retirement benefits are going up, then someone has to pay for it. The question we need to ask about any kind of a CPP/QPP increase is, what are the real costs, who pays, who can expect to reap the benefits, and what exactly can they expect to get?
Finding yourself out of work can be a scary and demoralizing experience, and I sympathize with Canadians who are unemployed. And while the economy in parts of the country can certainly be better, I have news for the doomsayers: small business owners say they have thousands upon thousands of open jobs in almost all sectors, including construction, manufacturing, hospitality and retail.
The simple answer is that CFIB isn't right-wing or left-wing -- we're pro-small business. In fact, so are all of Canada's mainstream political parties, and (nearly) the entire country. And if you think the idea of Conservatives, Liberals and New Democrats agreeing with each other sounds wild and crazy, you might want to sit down when you read the next paragraph.