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Prince Edward Island Greens and Liberals criticize government response to Fiona

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Prince Edward Island's opposition Green and Liberal parties say the provincial government is still failing to address gaps in post-Fiona reconstruction efforts.

The Greens believe that the government should carry out regular inspections in state-run seniors' homes, refund at least one month's rent to seniors in social housing and grant a one-month deferral of repayment of provincial student loans, analogous to the deferral of other provincial loans.

Interim Liberal Leader Sonny Gallant called the provincial government's response to Fiona “heartbreaking” and “simply inadequate.”

Gallant said there is poor communication, uneven support, little control over resources and an overall lack of coordinated relief efforts.

“We need to help people a little more than we have done so far,” he said.

“Before Fiona struck, everyone was struggling with high costs. This only made things worse.”

Gallant said he heard about the concerns of island residents after the storm. On Wednesday morning, for example, he spoke to a senior citizen whose “chimney was ripped off his house.”

Everyone was already struggling with the high costs before Fiona struck, and this just made things worse. — Sonny Gallant

“The repair cost $900, but his insurance doesn't cover it because he has a $1,000 deductible.”

Now Gallant is calling on the government to introduce the wage reimbursement program for affected workers retroactively to September 24 and to provide $500 to all households that have been without power for more than five days.

The Greens are also calling on the government to extend wage subsidies to support those who have suffered wage losses due to the closure of daycare centers, as well as people working for employers off the island.