“International Women’s Day is an annual opportunity to celebrate the pioneering individuals and groups who have struggled to create a society that promotes diversity, tolerance, safety, social justice and equality for all people. While we have accomplished so much, we’re also daily reminded that there is more work that needs to be done. Recent economic [...] Read More
Today the federal Conservative government appointed former Cabinet Minister Vic Toews to the bench in Manitoba.
It’s not the Senate appointment he likely really wanted, but he’ll just have to make do with this plum patronage post and the $288,100 salary.
As a minister in Stephen Harper’s cabinet, Vic Toews was most famous for his failed attempt to get warrantless access to Canadians’ emails and phone calls. He even said that anyone who didn’t like his warrentless snooping stood with the child pornographers!
Who can forget his own adventures in patronage?
And of course there’s his recent lobbying, where he registered on behalf of four different organizations in Manitoba, finding loopholes around the five-year ban on federal ministers lobbying after leaving office.
We can only assume it was his fine legal mind, demonstrated by his record of breaking election laws in Manitoba, that most appealed to Stephen Harper. Couldn’t have been his long history as a Conservative warrior for the prime minister? Could it?
Canadians deserve better than more Conservative patronage.
The Conservatives are once again failing Indigenous women and girls by issuing a committee report sanctioning their refusal to address the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.
“It is appalling that after hearing witness after witness testify that much more needs to be done on missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, the Conservatives could produce a sanitized report saying that everything is fine,” said NDP Aboriginal Affairs critic Jean Crowder (Nanaimo Cowichan). “This is an intergenerational tragedy that demands immediate action.”
The NDP’s dissenting report recommends that the federal government:
- establish a National Commission of Public Inquiry to analyze violence against Indigenous women and girls;
- utilize Niki Ashton’s motion (M-444) to develop and implement a national action plan to address violence against Indigenous women and girls;
- ensure that Indigenous women lead, design and implement solutions to address this crisis;
- address chronic underfunding including key frontlines services, shelters, child welfare, and research; and
- invest in prevention and treatment services.
“The Conservatives have turned their backs on Indigenous women and their families but ignoring this serious issue won’t make it go away,” said NDP deputy Aboriginal Affairs critic Jonathan Genest-Jourdain (Manicouagan). “The NDP will keep pushing for action on this national tragedy.”
The Official Opposition’s Energy and Natural Resources Critic, Peter Julian, issued the following statement in response to the National Energy Board’s decision to approve the Line 9 reversal:
“All Canadians benefit when our resources are developed and transported in a safe and sustainable way. With the proper environmental review and high safety standards, New Democrats believe that processing Canadian oil in Canada makes sense.
However, we remain extremely concerned about the changes forced in by the Conservatives that gutted the review and approval process dealing with the Line 9 proposal. This weakened process has created uncertainty for industry, as evidenced by the numerous court challenges facing the Northern Gateway approval.
Conservatives have forced artificial timelines on project reviews, slashed the number of environmental assessments, and placed arbitrary limits on who can intervene in consultations.
This curtailed review process shuts out community voices and fails to fulfill the government’s obligation to consult and accommodate Aboriginal and treaty rights, inherent rights and Canada’s international obligations. This process failed to properly deal with important local concerns about safety and the environment.
New Democrats are committed to a fair, credible and transparent review process, based on principles of sustainability and ensuring Canadians draw maximum benefit from the sustainable development of our natural resources.”
Conservatives move shut down debate, again – this time to try and disrupt testimony they don’t like at committee
The Conservatives again broke their own record for shutting down debate by using Time Allocation for the 52nd and 53rd time. Add this to the six uses of closure, the most recent being to shut down debate on Brad Butt’s lies to the House of Commons, and you have 59 instances and counting of the Conservatives shutting down debate.
In their latest attempt to evade accountability on the Unfair Elections Act, Conservatives are using dirty tricks in the House of Commons to sabotage the testimony of Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand.
Conservatives had agreed to hear from the Chief Electoral Officer, but then turned around and started playing games and doing everything they can to disrupt Marc Mayrand’s testimony on this important bill.
The Conservatives proposed bill makes radical changes to the Elections Act and could disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of Canadians. The bill also targets the Chief Electoral Officer, reducing his powers and forbidding him in the future from educating and engaging Canadians about the importance of voting.
Canadians deserve better.