LETTER: New tax system would ensure access to health care

Your recent editorial — Health care is not a partisan issue — is an important message at a time of heightened partisanship in the US and Canada. Your call for major systemic change to strengthen our health care delivery — not fiddle with it — has grown louder.

Nothing could be more significant than this change in creating a more comprehensive approach that will bring this important service to the approximately 9 million Canadians who do not have dental insurance.

Both the Canadian Dental Association and the Canadian Dental Hygienist Association are calling for quality dental care for all children and seniors, regardless of income, and all uninsured low- and moderate-income Canadians.

Every member of Congress, whether Liberal, Conservative, NDP, Green or Independent, has a gold health care package paid for by the taxpayer – including dental care and drug coverage.

All MPs support the introduction of dental care except the Conservatives, who however oppose not only dental care but also national pharmaceutical care that many vulnerable people desperately need. This hypocrisy or just incoherent idea of ​​a party that wants to be a new government and cut taxes without explaining how the most vulnerable will meet their health care needs?

The need for a new, fair tax system has never been greater. Billion-dollar subsidies to wealthy oil companies and grocery chains that generate record profits must surely end. The independent Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) has uncovered huge tax loopholes, including massive tax avoidance by wealthy businesses and individuals. Two PBO reports for the 2019 tax year found that, in that year alone, wealthy individuals avoided paying at least $6 billion and wealthy corporations avoided paying at least $25 billion due to the use of foreign tax havens.

Honest, hardworking Canadians pay taxes – why should many of the wealthiest people avoid paying their fair share just because they can hire expensive tax lawyers and accountants? A new, fair tax system will ensure that vital health care services — and other social determinants of health, such as decent accommodation and healthy nutrition — are available to the many, not just the few people.

Ron Faris


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