Voters I have canvassed in Whitby-Oshawa are alarmed by the risks that the Harper Government is introducing into their daily lives. Nuclear Safety Commissioner Linda Keen’s firing is also of concern to them. Nuclear and food safety, as part of overall public safety, are core values of the Liberal Party. Lax regulations do not make for a safer Canada. Lax regulations are behind the near catastrophic sub prime mortgage meltdown in the US. Something that Jim Flaherty is too short sighted to understand, since it was his (not so) bright idea to bring 40 year mortgages to Canada....read: buying a home with a 5% down payment. Might be good for property developers, however very bad for a sound Canadian economy and promoting sound personal financial planning
Canadian Medical Association Editorial Accuses Harper Conservatives In Listeriosis Outbreak
Medical journal says Harper government lowered standards
September 17, 2008
THE CANADIAN PRESS
FREDERICTONˆAs the death toll rose yesterday from the national listeriosis outbreak, an editorial in the Canadian Medical Association Journal slammed the Harper government for undermining public health safeguards.
An elderly woman in New Brunswick became the 17th person whose death has been linked to the recall of food products from a Maple Leaf Foods plant in Toronto. It is the first confirmed case east of Ontario.
The New Brunswick Health Department said yesterday that the woman, in her early 80s, was infected with the same strain of listeria involved in the country-wide outbreak ˆ which the CMAJ editorial released yesterday describes as "the worst in the world."
"As in the Walkerton and SARS epidemics, an outbreak of this size may point to systemic failures across multiple levels," states the editorial in the latest edition of the journal, referring to the deadly water contamination eight years ago in Walkerton, Ont.
"Listeria is the biological agent, cold cuts the vector, but the ultimate cause may be found in risky government decisions."
The editorial, signed by several doctors and journal editors, states that Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government has reversed much of the progress previous governments made in relation to public health.
The editorial takes aim at the Conservative government's decision to transfer inspection duties for ready-to-eat meats to the meat industry itself, while allowing listeria standards to remain lower than they are in most countries and reducing the Public Health Agency of Canada's political clout.
The editorial also makes the case for a full-scale, arm's-length public inquiry similar to those for the tainted blood scandal, Walkerton and the SARS epidemic, rather than the investigation called for by the Harper government.
"A full-scale public inquiry into the major failings of Canada's food inspection system is necessary to protect Canadians from future epidemic threats, and the Canadian public should settle for nothing less than that," the editorial states.
The woman's death in New Brunswick is the first such fatality in Atlantic Canada.
In a related regulatory matter that has also caused concern, Stephen Harper's government has decided to transfer aviation safety oversight to the airline companies themselves.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Posted by Fillibluster at 10:51 AM