Lets Start Pharmacare With Free Birth Control

Ms. Irene Mathyssen (London—Fanshawe, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I was disappointed yesterday with a budget that failed to promise action, just studies on pharmacare. The NDP has long called for a national pharmacare strategy and I have been calling for much-needed coverage of prescription contraceptives. I was pleased that at our NDP convention, delegates voted for a policy of action that the NDP recommend the immediate creation of a health subsidy to the provinces for access to menstrual products and contraception for all citizens.

Sadly, the Liberals have missed an opportunity here. Next week, Canada will recognize International Women's Day, and instead of paying lip service to policies like pay equity and pharmacare, would it not be great to see real action? Let us start with access to free prescription contraceptives and menstrual products, remove barriers, and improve reproductive health options for all Canadians. The time to do this is now. All we need is political will.