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MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS
 
Meeting No. 10
 
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
 

The Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development met in camera at 3:35 p.m. this day, in Room 269, West Block, the Chair, Barry Devolin, presiding.

 

Members of the Committee present: Harold Albrecht, Rod Bruinooge, Barry Devolin, Nancy Karetak-Lindell, Tina Keeper, Marc Lemay, Yvon Lévesque, Hon. Anita Neville, Todd Norman Russell, Brian Storseth and Chris Warkentin.

 

Acting Members present: Ken Boshcoff for Hon. Anita Neville, Ken Boshcoff for Todd Norman Russell and Judy Wasylycia-Leis for Jean Crowder.

 

In attendance: Library of Parliament: Mary Hurley, Analyst. House of Commons: Mike MacPherson, Legislative Clerk.

 
The Committee proceeded to the consideration of matters related to Committee business.
 

The Chair presented the 2nd Report from the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure which read as follows:

1. That the Committee prioritize its work as follows:

  • C-21, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act;
  • C-30, An Act to establish the Specific Claims Tribunal and to make consequential amendments to other Acts;
  • other activities/studies.

2. That clause-by-clause consideration of Bill C-21 be scheduled for Wednesday, January 30, 2008.

3. That in relation to Bill C-30, the Minister and departmental officials be invited to appear on Wednesday, February 6, 2008.

4. That a meeting of the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure be scheduled for Monday, February 4, 2008, to discuss:

  1. the timetable, witnesses, and budget for Bill C-30; and
  2. to consider scheduling other activities/studies on subjects such as the census findings (Statistics Canada), education funding (Indian and Northern Affairs Canada), and the Estimates, among others.
 

It was agreed, — That the report of the Subcommittee, be amended by adding after the word “scheduled” the following: “from 3:30 PM to 4:15 PM”; and by adding after the word “2008,” the following: “and that the Parliamentary Secretary be invited to attend,”; and by adding after the word “others” the following: “; and that a meeting of the Standing Committee follow from 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM”.

 

The report of the Subcommittee as amended, read as follows:

1. That the Committee prioritize its work as follows:

  • C-21, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act;
  • C-30, An Act to establish the Specific Claims Tribunal and to make consequential amendments to other Acts;
  • other activities/studies.

2. That clause-by-clause consideration of Bill C-21 be scheduled for Wednesday, January 30, 2008.

3. That in relation to Bill C-30, the Minister and departmental officials be invited to appear on Wednesday, February 6, 2008.

4. That a meeting of the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure be scheduled from 3:30 pm to 4:15 pm for Monday, February 4, 2008, and that the Parliamentary Secretary be invited to attend, to discuss:

a. the timetable, witnesses, and budget for Bill C-30; and

b. to consider scheduling other activities/studies on subjects such as the census findings (Statistics Canada), education funding (Indian and Northern Affairs Canada), and the Estimates, among others;

and that a meeting of the Standing Committee follow from 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm.

 

It was agreed, — That the report of the Subcommittee, as amended, be concurred in.

 

At 3:52 p.m., the sitting was suspended.

At 3:54 p.m., the sitting resumed in public.

 
Pursuant to the Order of Reference of Tuesday, November 13, 2007, the Committee resumed its clause-by-clause study of Bill C-21, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act.
 

On new Clause 1.1,

Nancy Karetak-Lindell moved, — That Bill C-21 be amended by adding after line 5 on page 1 the following new clause:

“1.1 In relation to a complaint made under the Canadian Human Rights Act against a First Nation government, including a band council, tribal council or governing authority operating or administering programs and services under the Indian Act, this Act shall be interpreted and applied in a manner that gives due regard to First Nations legal traditions and customary laws, particularly the balancing of individual rights and interests against collective rights and interests.”

 

The Chair ruled the proposed amendment inadmissible because it was beyond the scope of the Bill, as provided on page 654 of House of Commons Procedure and Practice.

 

Whereupon, Nancy Karetak-Lindell appealed the decision of the Chair.

The question: "Shall the decision of the Chair be sustained?" was put and the decision was overturned on the following recorded division: YEAS: Harold Albrecht, Rod Bruinooge, Brian Storseth, Chris Warkentin — 4; NAYS: Ken Boshcoff, Nancy Karetak-Lindell, Tina Keeper, Marc Lemay, Yvon Lévesque, Todd Norman Russell, Judy Wasylycia-Leis — 7.

 

After debate, the question was put on the amendment of Nancy Karetak-Lindell and it was agreed to on the following recorded division: YEAS: Ken Boshcoff, Nancy Karetak-Lindell, Tina Keeper, Marc Lemay, Yvon Lévesque, Todd Norman Russell, Judy Wasylycia-Leis — 7; NAYS: Harold Albrecht, Rod Bruinooge, Brian Storseth, Chris Warkentin — 4.

 

On Clause 2,

Judy Wasylycia-Leis moved, — That Bill C-21, in Clause 2, be amended by replacing lines 6 to 21 on page 1 with the following:

“2. (1) Within 18 months after the day on which this Act receives royal assent, a comprehensive review of the effects of the repeal of section 67 of the Canadian Human Rights Act shall be jointly undertaken by the Government of Canada and any organizations identified by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development as being, in the aggregate, representative of the interests of First Nations peoples throughout Canada.

(2) A report on the review referred to in subsection (1) shall be submitted to both Houses of Parliament within one year after the day on which the review is undertaken under that subsection.”

Debate arose thereon.

 

By unanimous consent, the amendment and Clause 2 were allowed to stand until immediately after consideration of Clause 3.

 

On Clause 3,

Todd Norman Russell moved, — That Bill C-21, in Clause 3, be amended by replacing lines 22 to 26 on page 1 and lines 1 to 4 on page 2 with the following:

“3. Despite section 1, an act or omission by any First Nation government, including a band council, tribal council or governing authority operating or administering programs or services under the Indian Act, that was made in the exercise of powers or the performance of duties and functions conferred or imposed by or under that Act shall not constitute the basis for a complaint under Part III of the Canadian Human Rights Act if it occurs within 36 months after the day on which this Act receives royal assent.”

 

Rod Bruinooge moved, — That the amendment be amended by replacings the words “36 months” with the words “18 months ”.

 

The question was put on the subamendment of Rod Bruinooge and it was negatived, by a show of hands: YEAS: 3; NAYS: 7.

 

The question was put on the amendment of Todd Norman Russell and it was agreed to on the following recorded division: YEAS: Ken Boshcoff, Nancy Karetak-Lindell, Tina Keeper, Marc Lemay, Yvon Lévesque, Todd Norman Russell, Judy Wasylycia-Leis — 7; NAYS: Harold Albrecht, Rod Bruinooge, Brian Storseth, Chris Warkentin — 4.

 

Clause 3, as amended, carried by a show of hands: YEAS: 7; NAYS: 4.

 
By unanimous consent, the Committee resumed consideration of the amendment of Judy Wasylycia-Leis, — That Bill C-21, in Clause 2, be amended by replacing lines 6 to 21 on page 1 with the following:

“2. (1) Within 18 months after the day on which this Act receives royal assent, a comprehensive review of the effects of the repeal of section 67 of the Canadian Human Rights Act shall be jointly undertaken by the Government of Canada and any organizations identified by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development as being, in the aggregate, representative of the interests of First Nations peoples throughout Canada.

(2) A report on the review referred to in subsection (1) shall be submitted to both Houses of Parliament within one year after the day on which the review is undertaken under that subsection.”

 

Nancy Karetak-Lindell moved, — That the amendment be amended by adding after the words “Government of Canada” the following:

“and any committee of the Senate, the House of Commons or both Houses of Parliament”

Debate arose thereon.

 

By unanimous consent, the subamendment was withdrawn.

 

Marc Lemay moved, — That the amendment be amended by replacing the words “18 months” with the words “5 years”

 

After debate, the question was put on the subamendment of Marc Lemay and it was agreed to.

 

The question was put on the amendment of Judy Wasylycia-Leis, as amended, and it was agreed to.

 

Clause 2, as amended, carried.

 

On new Clause 4,

Anita Neville moved, — That Bill C-21 be amended by adding after line 4 on page 2 the following new clause:

“4. The Government of Canada, together with the appropriate organizations representing the First Nations peoples of Canada, shall, within the period referred to in section 3, undertake a study to identify the extent of the preparation, capacity and fiscal and human resources that will be required in order for First Nations communities and organizations to comply with the Canadian Human Rights Act. The Government of Canada shall report to both Houses of Parliament on the findings of that study before the expiration of the period referred to in section 3.”

Debate arose thereon.

 

The question was put on the amendment of Anita Neville and it was agreed to, by a show of hands: YEAS: 7; NAYS: 4.

 

New Clause 4, as amended, carried.

 

The Title carried.

 

The Bill, as amended, carried on division.

 

ORDERED, — That the Chair report the Bill, as amended, to the House.

 

ORDERED, — That Bill C-21, as amended, be reprinted for the use of the House at report stage.

 

At 5:06 p.m., the Committee adjourned to the call of the Chair.

 



Bonnie Charron
Clerk of the Committee

 
 
2008/02/25 11:05 a.m.