Pooled Registered Pension Plans Act (Bill C-25)

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the hon. member for Thunder Bay—Superior North raising this critical and pressing issue of pension plans not being protected when corporations go bankrupt. Clearly we need legislation that places corporate pension plans as secured creditors in bankruptcy.

The member mentioned that in his riding, Catalyst Paper’s current situation is causing real problems for people in Saanich—Gulf Islands, and people in the Ottawa area know well the disaster that befell so many Nortel workers, particularly those with disability pension plans that they had been counting on.

What does the member think it will take to get government action to protect private pension schemes in bankruptcy?

Bruce Hyer: Madam Speaker, as I mentioned in my speech, the hon. member for Thunder Bay—Rainy River introduced private member’s legislation that was excellent and would put pension plans first ahead of other creditors. I hope he will reintroduce that legislation in this House and I hope all members of Parliament will support it. Just as paycheques should come before creditors, so should their pension plans, which are really paycheques held in arrears.