MacLeod calls claims PCs would make maternity leave permanent 'fear mongering'

A local Progressive Conservative candidate says the Liberal party's claim that leader Tim Hudak could make maternity leave "permanent" for new moms in the public sector "dirty politics."

Nepean Carleton candidate Lisa MacLeod said in a TV interview last week that her party's plan to slash 100,000 public sector jobs would be done through attrition which could be done through retirement or maternity leave.

After MacLeod gave the interview, the provincial Liberals released a statement that said Hudak would cut public sector jos through "100,000 maternity leaves."

"Is (Hudak's) plan to fire 100,000 people really based on making maternity leave permanent?" the press release asked.

"That is fear mongering at its worst," she said. "That is the most offensive thing I've ever heard."

MacLeod says those types of cuts would be made if a worker decided not to return to her job in the public service after her time off.  MacLeod uses herself as an example of this, adding she decided not to return to her job in the federal government after her maternity leave was up.

"To use that against the Progressive Conservative Party in order to play dirty politics . . . That's all they've got."

Speaking at a campaign announcement Tuesday morning, Ottawa Centre Liberal candidate Yasir Naqvi said the plan to cut that many jobs from Ontario's public service would decimate it, regardless of how those cuts are done.

Tim Hudak announced in the first week of the campaign that his party would cut 100,000 public sector positions to create more private sector employment.  Hudak's opponents have heavily criticized the plan since it was announced.

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