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Annual Legislature Presentation To The Government And People Of Manitoba

Year Published:  1982  
Resource Type:  Article

Abstract:  The issue of the 1980's, we reiterate, is not the lack of wealth, but rather the equitable distribution of existing wealth and the sharing of new wealth.....We do not believe that 'all wealth is created in the private sector'. Sectors create nothing. Working people create wealth....

In this brief, the MFL seeks to document the need for a highly interventionist provicial government that will complement and, if necessary, replace the private sector in economic development. The report contains an overview of the make up of the Manitoba economy and statistical review of economic performance in terms of real domestic product, employment, average weekly earnings, investement, granting of residential and population movement. The review of these indicators shows that the province lags behind the rest of the country, except in terms of populaiton decline. It notes that since 1977, Manitoba has lost 31,400 persons through net outward migration, and compares this situation with that of the Atlantic provinces,....which, though generally considered...to be continually economically depressed....had net increases of population with Newfoundland leading the way with 6,400 people.

The report presents a detailed program for the alleviation of poverty in rural nothern Manitoba, an area with an unemployment rate of 46%. Elements of the plan include: preferential hiring for northern residents; a boost in northern-based vocational training programs; establishment of comprehensive training programs in co-operative development and a co-operative development fund providing low interest loans; establishment of appropriate industries (fish canneries, fish meal plants, forest industries, tourism, crafts, trapping and fur farming); agricultural development, were feasible; housing and sanitation construction that would employ northerners as well as allow for standards of living comparable with those in nothern urban communities; and economic planning that would fully involve northern residents, the labour movement, and various levels of government in a meaningful way.

While most of the report is given over to economic analysis and suggested remedial measures, some space is devoted to education, workplace health and safety, and reforms in workers' compensation programmes, labour relations legislation and the labour standards act.

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