Ottawa, ON – Laila Goodridge, Conservative Shadow Minister for Families Children and Social Development, and Luc Berthold, Deputy Leader of the Official Opposition and Québec Political Lieutenant, released the following statement regarding the ongoing chaos facing Canadians trying to obtain a passport over the past several months and the continuing incompetence being shown by Minister Gould:

“While Canadians are struggling to get passports, Justin Trudeau is nowhere to be found.

“My office has received countless messages from Canadians frustrated with trying to get passports. Canadians are waiting in line for days, missing travel plans, and facing utter confusion at passport offices. Canadians are demanding answers.

“Minister Gould is trying to downplay her government’s disastrous record. It is not good enough for the Minister to share “the frustration of Canadians,” when she is the Minister responsible for the long lines at Service Canada offices. It is not enough to say that “improving this service is a top priority for the Government of Canada.” when action should have been done months ago.

“Clearly, basic government services haven’t been a ‘top priority’. 

“As restrictions were lifted, Employment and Social Development Canada should have been preparing Service Canada for a foreseeable return to pre-pandemic demand for passports. Instead, the Trudeau government stuck rigidly to federal mandates and diminished Service Canada’s ability to provide adequate service to Canadians.

“Now, the government is scrambling to shift resources from the CRA and IRCC – which will only further exasperate the backlogs in that department – to play catch up processing passport applications. Yet, Service Canada employees are only assisting Canadians who can prove urgent travel get a passport, despite their own website advising Canadians, not to finalize any travel plans until they get their passport. This contradiction demonstrates a failure to communicate with Canadians and a government that is scrambling to plug one more hole while increasingly being unable to provide its mandated services.

“Conservatives stand with Canadians getting back to normal life. While the Trudeau government throws Canadians’ travelling plans into chaos and makes excuses for not having a plan to return to normal, Conservatives are ready to get government back to providing the services Canadians are entitled to.”