Petition to the Government of Canada

  

    Whereas:

    

      

        Volunteer firefighters account of 83% of Canada's total firefighting essential first responders;

        In addition, approximately 8,000 essential search and rescue volunteers respond to thousands of incidents every year;

        The tax code of Canada currently allows volunteer firefighters and search and rescue volunteers to claim a $3,000 tax credit if 200 hours of volunteer services were completed in a calendar year;

        This works out to a mere $450 per year, which we allow these essential volunteers to keep of their own income from their regularjobs, $2.25 an hour.

        If they volunteer more than 200 hours, which many do, this tax credit becomes even less;

        These essential volunteers not only put their lives on the line and give their time, training, and efforts to Canadians, but they also allow cities and municipalities to keep property taxes lower than if paid services were required;

        Increasing this tax credit would allow these essential volunteers to keep more of their hard-earned money, likely to be spent in the communities in which they lives; and

        It would help retain these volunteers in a time when volunteerism is decreasing.

      

    

     We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to support Private Members Bill C-264 and increase the tax exemption from $3,000 to $10,000 for lines 31220 and 31240 to help our essential volunteer firefighters and volunteer search and rescue people across the country.