Toronto, May 16, 2014
Archived - Harper Government Highlights the Importance Between Strong Financial Management and Good Health
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Minister of State (Finance) Kevin Sorenson, Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women Kellie Leitch and Canada’s new Financial Literacy Leader Jane Rooney today met with the Junior Economic Club of Canada at the Toronto Stock Exchange to stress the importance of financial literacy for youth.
The primary mandate of the Junior Economic Club of Canada is to educate and inspire Canadian youth to become financially literate. Each year, high school students from across Ontario are invited by the Junior Economic Club of Canada to take part in “A Day on Bay,” which is a field trip to Toronto’s Financial District where they are taught the fundamentals of finance. This year, students are learning about the important link between financial health and physical health.
The Harper Government is committed to improving the financial literacy of all Canadians and supporting youth in better preparing to face their financial future. Since 2006, the Government has delivered on an ambitious agenda to improve Canada’s financial consumer protection framework, making it one of the most advanced in the world. The Government is developing a comprehensive financial consumer code, which will create a framework to more effectively protect consumers in a rapidly evolving financial industry.
- The Government has taken steps to update the existing financial consumer protection framework, which the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada monitors and the Financial Literacy Leader is mandated to raise awareness about, including:
- Mandating an effective minimum 21-day, interest-free grace period on all new credit card purchases when a customer pays the outstanding balance in full and introducing a fee summary box;
- Reducing the maximum cheque hold period to four days from seven days for cheques of less than $1,500 and providing consumers with access to the first $100 within 24 hours;
- Banning unsolicited credit card cheques;
- Requiring that financial institutions offer products and services on an opt-in basis only, where consumers have sufficient disclosure about the terms and conditions before accepting;
- Appointing Jane Rooney as Canada’s first Financial Literacy Leader;
- Designating November as Financial Literacy Month; and
- Introducing new requirements for prepaid cards issued by federally regulated financial institutions such as disclosing activation fees, expiry dates and other relevant information to consumers. These regulations came into force on May 1.
“Understanding how to manage money is one of the most important life skills people can develop, and it’s never too early to start. Events like today’s with the Junior Economic Club of Canada help equip the workers of tomorrow with a solid understanding of the value of money and budgeting skills, and help them maintain good physical and mental health throughout their life.”
- Kevin Sorenson, Minister of State (Finance)
“Becoming financially literate at a young age and adopting smart practices contribute to good fiscal management and better overall health. Developing this knowledge at a younger age can help Canadians secure their own individual economic prosperity.”
- Kellie Leitch, Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women
“The economic burden of poor health is staggering, with the treatment of chronic diseases accounting for 67% of all direct health care costs. Supporting children in adopting healthy habits early in their lives, such as eating well and being more active, will have a positive impact on their future health and wealth. I applaud the Junior Economic Club of Canada for exploring this important link, and for demonstrating the economic impact of healthy living.”
- Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health
“As Canada’s Financial Literacy Leader, my role is to collaborate on and coordinate activities that strengthen Canadians’ financial literacy. I am very pleased to be working with the Junior Economic Club on their great initiatives for young people, who are at a point in their lives when developing their knowledge and confidence in making financial decisions can have a lifelong impact.”
- Jane Rooney, Financial Literacy Leader
Office of the Minister of State (Finance)
Department of Finance