National Newswatch

Senate to hold emergency debate on racism; Conservatives block attempts to table Black caucus statement in Red Chamber

Jun 18 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — Senators will hold an emergency debate on racism against Black, Indigenous, and Asian Canadians this evening. Senate Speaker George Furey (Newfoundland and Labrador) ruled Thursday afternoon that an emergency debate could go ahead, after it was proposed by Independent Senator Rosemary Moodie (Ontario). Sen. Moodie argued that fighting racism was part of the government’s job, […]

Senators want to grill cabinet ministers on government’s response to fighting anti-Black, anti-Indigenous racism

Jun 16 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — A group of Senators is calling for Liberal ministers to testify in the Red Chamber about the government’s role in fighting anti-Black and anti-Indigenous racism. Independent Senator Marie-Françoise Mégie (Rougemont, Que.) gave notice of a motion on June 16 that, if passed, would set up a committee of the whole in the Senate, and “receive” […]

Nearly 3,000 complaints filed against RCMP officers in 2018-19, up 13 per cent from year prior; excessive use of force most common complaint

Jun 8 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — RCMP officers drew nearly 3,000 complaints in 2018-19; most kept confidential Canadian residents filed 2,988 complaints about the conduct of RCMP officers in 2018-19, a 13 per cent increase from the year prior, and excessive use of force was one of the most common subjects of complaint. The complaints were filed to the Civilian Review […]

Liberal MP Marie-France Lalonde, a former retirement home operator, joins call for national standards and more money for long-term care

Jun 1 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — The federal and provincial governments should get together to set nation-wide standards for long-term care homes, says Liberal MP Marie-France Lalonde, who worked as a hospital social worker and retirement home operator before getting into politics. The federal NDP have already called for national standards for long-term care in Canada. Ontario Premier Doug Ford joined […]

Liberals preparing legislation to extend deadlines for courts, security reviews and more amid pandemic

Jun 1 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — The Liberal government is drawing up legislation to extend or suspend hundreds of routine deadlines for courts, businesses, and even its own ministers as the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted life across the country for months. Justice Canada published draft legislation May 19 titled the Time Limits and Other Periods Act (COVID-19). The draft law would […]

Canada should re-examine U.S. relations, ‘pursue its own future’ in face of Trump’s pandemic response, say foreign policy and trade experts

Jun 1 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — Canada should respond to U.S. President Donald Trump’s “America First” policies for the COVID-19 pandemic by becoming more self-reliant, manufacturing more of its own essential supplies, and “recalibrating” its relationship with its southern neighbour, say foreign affairs experts and a parliamentary critic.

Revival of Upper Chamber’s Progressive Group will ‘weaken’ Senate leaders, says Sen. Pierre Dalphond

May 25 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — The Progressive Senate Group’s reclamation of official status last week will give more freedom to Senators unhappy with their affiliation, and weaken the leadership teams in the Red Chamber, says Sen. Pierre Dalphond, who left the Independent Senators Group that dominates the Senate last week to join the PSG. Sen. Dalphond (De Lorimier, Que.) was […]

O’Toole campaign attacks MacKay in new online ads

May 21 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — Erin O’Toole’s Conservative Party leadership campaign released two digital ads attacking rival Peter MacKay this week, proclaiming that he can’t beat Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in a federal election. “He just can’t handle the pressure,” quips a male voiceover in one of the ads, which features clips of Mr. MacKay reacting to questions from CBC […]

Vancouver transit authority wants ‘several hundred million’ from feds to keep going

May 18 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — The CEO of Vancouver’s public transit authority is asking the federal government for a bailout of several hundred million dollars to offset losses from the COVID-19 shutdown. Kevin Desmond told The Hill Times that TransLink—which runs metro Vancouver’s public buses, trains, and commuter ferries—is on track to go into the red by roughly $500-million this […]

Progressives courting key ninth member in Senate

May 15 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — Progressive Senate Group leader Jane Cordy says she is in contact with multiple Senators from other groups as she seeks to expand the PSG, which is now one member short of gaining official recognition in the Senate. “I’ve gotten some calls,” she said, adding Senators had also reached out through email and text to set […]

Patricia Bovey leaves ISG to join Progressive Senate Group

May 8 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — Senator Patricia Bovey has left the Independent Senators Group to sit as a member of the Progressive Senate Group, a small, unofficial group in the Senate comprised of former Liberal Senators. Sen. Bovey (Manitoba) has sat in the ISG since shortly after she was sworn into the Senate in November 2016. Her status on the […]

Ballistic tracing, tougher penalties, joint operations key to slowing cross-border gun smuggling, say former top cops

May 4 2020 — Peter Mazereeuw — Ballistic tracing, joint-force operations, and tougher penalties for smugglers are some of the ways Canada can stem the flow of illegal guns across its border with the U.S., say two former police chiefs now sitting in the Senate. The Liberal government has pledged once again to crack down on cross-border gun smuggling as part of […]