How A Liberal Government Could Impact Your Life

Designed by Yazmin Butcher
Election day is exciting. The thrill of marking the “x” your ballot. The rush of exercising a democratic right many people around the world still don’t have. The relief of finally getting to the end of this tumultuous, soul-crushing and exhausting election cycle. Just me? The thing is, this isn’t the end. It’s just the beginning. Even though Canadians opted for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals again, this time it will form a minority government and will need support from at least one other party in order to pass legislation, which means fulfilling campaign promises will be harder this time around.
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But what exactly did the Liberals promise? From lower cell phone bills to improved parental leave, we break down how the Liberal platform would affect your life in the years ahead if the campaign promises are fulfilled.

Life would be more affordable for young families

A recent Refinery29 survey of Canadian women, found that cost of living was the number 1 issue they cared about this election. Not surprisingly, affordability was addressed in platforms across all major parties during the election. As housing prices skyrocket and childcare is so expensive that it’s becoming a luxury, the government knows financial stress weighs heavily on Canadian families. The Liberals promise to increase the Canada Child Benefit (the CCB is a tax-free payment given to families raising children under 18). For those with babies under one years old, the CCB will increase by 15%. They say this will result in up to $1,000 more per family.

Parental leave would be improved

In additional to making maternity and parental benefits tax-free, the Liberals promise more equality in parental leave by introducing a 15-week leave for adoptive parents (LGBTQ2+ families too).

Childcare spaces would increase

As for childcare, the plan is to create 250,000 more before- and after-school spaces for children under 10 years old. The average monthly cost of childcare in Toronto (the highest in the country) is $1,675. The Liberals promise to lower childcare fees by 10%.

Your medication costs would be covered

The Liberals say they’ll implement universal pharmacare, but don’t get too excited yet. It’s an ambitious and complex plan that would require each province and territory to sign-on.
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There would be more research into women’s health

Since Justin Trudeau etched feminism into his brand and created the first gender-balanced cabinet in the country’s history, all eyes have been on how the Liberal Party will follow through on its promises to women and commitment to equality. On abortion, its stance is unequivocally pro-choice: “We believe that women have the right to make all decisions about their own bodies — full stop.” The Liberals also promise to create a National Institute for Women’s Health Research that would tackle the very real inequality in how women — especially Indigenous and Black women — are treated when it comes to healthcare.
Women are still paid roughly 87 cents for every dollar earned by men, and while the Liberals don’t lay out a specific plan to change that fact, they do promise a $9-million investment over three years for jobs for women newcomers to Canada who are visible minorities.

Your cell phone bill would be cheaper

If you own a cell phone in this country, you know we pay astronomical monthly fees for cell services, some of the highest in the world. Here’s the Liberal’s solution: A 25% reduction in the price of cell and wireless services, which they say will save an average family of four $1,000 a year.

There’s a solution to the student debt problem

The cost of post-secondary education became a hot-button topic this year when Ontario students protested the provincial government’s changes to college and university funding, including the elimination of free tuition for low-income students. On the federal level, the Liberals want to increase student grants and put up to $1,200 annually back in the pockets of students. When it comes to paying off that pesky student debt, they’re giving former students a head start. You won’t have to pay off interest-free student loans for two years and until you make more than $35,000 a year. For new families, parents can pause payments until their kid is five years old.
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Indigenous issues are prioritized

The most glaring question for any government in charge of this country: Will First Nations communities finally have clean drinking water? The Liberals say they can make that happen by 2021. The horrific findings of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls were released this year, and this term, the Liberals have a chance to show if they’re going to implement any of the report’s recommendations, as they say they will.

Gender-based violence would not be tolerated

Gender-based violence is an epidemic around the world, disproportionately affecting female-identifying people and members of the LGBTQKI2+ community. In Canada, the Liberals hope to end gender-based violence by investing $30-million into a National Action Plan that will focus on access to protection and services.

You could be eligible for a travel bursary

In the hopes of making travel more accessible, the Liberals will make it easier for lower-income Canadians to go camping (an election pledge that was heavily criticized) by offering families who can’t afford tovisit the national parks, a travel bursary of up to $2,000.

You can get a loan to green your home

Ah yes, the impending end of the world. I saved the most pressing and terrifying issue for last: climate. The Liberals already plan to ban single-use plastics. They also plan to make it easier for homeowners to get a loan (of up to $40,000) to make their homes more energy efficient.
The Liberals plan to “achieve net-zero emissions by 2050,” meaning carbon emissions will be offset by actions that eliminate carbon, such as planting trees. They’re also still going forward with the Trans Mountain pipeline project, but they promise that the profits will go to “natural climate solutions and clean energy projects.” Sure, build a pipeline, save the environment. Fingers crossed.
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