Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario

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Speaking out on the budget: Finding the Right Balance

We have a simple message: we want balance in the budget.

Yes, there must be balance between expenditures and revenue so that the debt and deficits don't get out of hand. But a balanced approach means more:

  • A balanced approach also asks what expenditures are necessary to maintain and build a healthy society.
  • A balanced approach asks how we pay for those services.
  • A balanced approach asks how much debt is appropriate and prudent.
  • A balanced approach asks how and when we reduce the debt and deficit, taking into account the state of the economy and the needs of society.
  • A balanced approach asks how to rectify problems arising in our market economy, such as:

o Recession
o Unemployment
o Poverty
o Pollution and environmental degradation

These are the kinds of problems that lead to ill-health and the early onset of chronic conditions.

They affect all of us, but they affect our most vulnerable populations disproportionately. If we
focus on one budgetary objective -- the deficit -- to the exclusion of the others, we contribute to
ill health. In addition, an austerity approach will also worsen an already weak economy. Based
on a pre-recession employment rates of 63.5 per cent and a 2012 rate of 61.3 per cent, there is a
shortfall of 250,000 jobs .

We have carefully researched recommendations for the budget to help improve the health of Ontarians, and the health of our economy.

Read the full speaking notes from Ontario Pre-budget Submission 2013

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