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April 9th, 2020

NDP calls on government to stand up to big banks for Canadians

NEW WESTMINSTER — Today, at the House of Commons Finance Committee meeting, NDP Finance Critic Peter Julian repeated the call for Minister Morneau to intervene for Canadians struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic. Julian asked that the government use its power to make the banks waive interest fees and charges on credit cards so Canadians can focus on their health without worrying more about their bank accounts.

“In the last month alone, one million people have lost their jobs across the country and thousands more are struggling to get by with reduced or no income. Still, this government is letting banks and credit card companies charge sky-high interest rates when they know people are struggling to survive – it isn’t right,” said Julian. “The federal government has the power and authority to step in. They need to stand up for Canadians by standing up to the banks.”

The federal government has the legislative power to make the banks give Canadians a break on fees, interest and payments. Despite claims from the Finance Minister, and some steps forward, the major banks and credit card companies have still not responded to the federal government's requests to help Canadians by waiving fees during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“When big corporations want a bailout the government was there from the get go. But when Canadians are getting gouged by banks and credit card companies in the middle of a public health crisis – the government has so far just let it happen. People across Canada deserve better than that.”