Statement on Food Sector Jobs

Ms. Irene Mathyssen (London—Fanshawe, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I and my constituents were deeply concerned to learn of the closure of the Kellogg's cereal plant in London. This is yet another devastating blow to the community and will result in another 550 jobs lost from the area.

The Conservative approach to the manufacturing sector is broken. That is confirmed by the abysmal job numbers. Londoners know this firsthand, especially when we look at the government's own data. Since November 2006, there were 11,300 fewer manufacturing and food processing jobs in London, and 2,600 more unemployed workers.

As with the Heinz factory set to close later this year, we are placing families, our farmers and our cities in a precarious position. Farmers produce the food and people in the cities manufacture it. When we lose the manufacturing plants, we put everyone at risk. It is an economic and food security gamble that benefits no one.

We need a government willing to protect the jobs of our citizens, whether they live on a farm or in a city. Only then can we ensure a strong rural and urban Canada.