Taking Better Care of Our Seniors

Taking Better Care of Our Seniors

At a time when seniors were most in need of our protection, their country let them down. It is heartbreaking and a tragedy they were exposed to a virus that their bodies could not defend against.

As Prime Minister, I will ensure we learn as much as we can from this virus as quickly as we can. We cannot wait for a Royal Commission to get answers. We need to move heaven and earth now so that first and foremost, we are ready with protections and a dramatically better defence should another virus reach our shores.

My priority is always the health and safety of Canadians and especially the most vulnerable. Seniors must be protected wherever they live. Seniors must be given every opportunity to stay in their own homes for as long as possible if that is what they want.

This means giving them more access to healthcare in their homes. I propose enhancing the Caregiver’s Credit and the Disability Tax Credit for those over the age of 65. A national Conservative government that I lead will assess making these tax credits refundable and therefore more accessible to seniors on low incomes.

I also propose that seniors be able to deduct from their taxes those expenses that enable them to live safely in their homes.

I will also work with provinces to boost funding for homecare. I see this not as a government expense but an investment that reduces the cost of hospital and institutionalized care while enhancing the quality of life for seniors. I will also work with provincial and territorial governments to establish standards of care for seniors’ homes in Canada.

COVID-19 has depleted the savings and retirement accounts for many seniors. A few months ago, I proposed that the requirement for seniors to withdraw money from their Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) be relaxed while the financial markets were at a low. The Liberal government offered token relief. I propose that the requirement to withdraw from a RRIF be suspended for two years. I also propose allowing seniors to withdraw up to $10,000 from a RRIF on a tax-free basis for two years.

As Prime Minister I will launch the first comprehensive review of our tax system in over 50 years. Part of the mandate of this review will be to consider whether forced withdrawals from RRIFs can be substantially deferred to give seniors more control over their money.

Seniors built this country and I will not let them down when they are most in need.


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