Canadian Female Physicians Urge Federal Liberals: Reverse Proposed Changes To Corporations
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To our fellow Canadians:
On July 18th 2017, Bill Morneau, the Federal Finance Minister announced proposed changes to the regulations surrounding the taxation structure for small business owners. This will irreparably damage the gains made by female entrepreneurs in the last decade. We are but one of many groups of professional women affected by this change. We are Canadian Women In Medicine. Here is our letter to Mr. Morneau and Mr. Trudeau. Please sign to show your support. Anybody and everybody can sign. If you are Canadian, and this speaks to you, please sign to support Canadian physicians and the future of our healthcare system.
To Mr. Morneau and Mr. Trudeau:
We represent a growing number of female physicians across Canada. We are well-educated, we are committed, we are passionate and we are contributing like never before to our country’s current and future economy. Many of us are also the primary or sole income-earners in our households. In addition, many of us support elderly parents. We are mothers, daughters, wives and caregivers.
The right to incorporate and the associated tax benefits were negotiated by our provincial associations in lieu of raises and benefits. The trade-off allowed us to do the job of caring for our patients, while still caring for the next generation of Canadians, our children. We rely on our corporations to run the business-end of our practices (purchasing medical-grade equipment, staff, overhead, rent, computer technology, protecting patient records and so on). We also rely on our corporations to save for our childrens’ futures, our own future, our retirement. We are not treated like other public servants: we do not get any benefits package, paid maternity leave, pension plans, vacation pay, or sick leave. We pay for all that out-of-pocket.
We run self-employed small businesses. Complicating matters further, we are independent contractors to provincial governments in a single-payer system. These governments unilaterally regulate our fees, so we cannot pass on any extra costs to our patients to make up for potential losses the way dentists, lawyers, and accountants can. Most of us have had our fees cut in recent years, as our provincial governments attempt to balance their budgets. Many of us only make ends meet because of our right to incorporate.
Let us be clear: we respect the law. The investment strategies we employ by way of our corporations are not used to dodge taxes. We use this system as a long-term saving strategy, our only strategy, in the absence of reasonable alternatives. We fear the choice we will be forced to make if we lose the ability to run our practices successfully, to save for our children's futures, to retire independently when the time comes. Without the tax benefits of incorporation, many of us will consider leaving our jobs or leaving the country.
The proposed changes to private corporations will affect Canadian female physicians, Canadian physician households and our children in critical ways. Women in Canada have come so far. We stand as an example for all countries. There is no doubt these changes will have lasting negative repercussions on all professional women in the Canadian workforce.
We, female physicians of Canada, urge you to reconsider the proposed changes to private corporations. We have worked unbelievably hard to get here. These tax changes will make it unbelievably hard for us to stay here.
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