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Kim Campbell
View Kim Campbell Profile
Right Hon. Kim Campbell
2019-07-25 11:12
Thank you.
First of all, good afternoon. This is old home week, in a sense, for me and this committee. This is the third time we've had the opportunity to discuss this very important process. I do regret that I'm not there personally to give you all a valedictory handshake and perhaps a hug, since I'm sure this will be the last meeting during this mandate. I do want to say how much I've appreciated the opportunity to speak with you and hear your points of view on the work of the committee.
To the chair, Mr. Anthony Housefather; the vice-chairs, the Honourable Lisa Raitt and Ms. Tracey Ramsey; and the members of the committee, it is my pleasure to be before you. It was my honour to chair the committee.
I might say that the difference between the work of this committee and the two others is that
we almost always worked in French. You will find this surprising when you hear me speak French. Even though I speak French like a Vancouver native, it was very important to do so to reflect the reality: we were in the process of choosing candidates from the province of Quebec.
I will speak more French, except I'm very tired—I just arrived yesterday from Africa—and I don't really want to
massacre Molière's language in reporting to you.
We did, in fact, do most of our work in French. That was the difference from the other exercises.
I also want to say, as I said to you before about the other two iterations, that every time somebody says to me, “Thank you for your good work as the chair”, I say that the members of the committee made my work quite easy. I think you would be very proud and happy to know what incredible professionalism and dedication to serving Canadians across the country, not just Canadians in Quebec, the members brought to their work. My goal has always been, in these exercises, to ensure that each member of the committee has an opportunity to speak freely for himself or herself so that we get a genuine exchange of ideas and avoid groupthink and any other dynamics that can undermine the quality of decisions. I must say that this was an outstanding group of Canadians who really took their responsibility very seriously. As I said, it made my job easy. I was very proud to serve with them. I can say nothing but the finest things about them in terms of their competence and their character.
Incidentally, as I saw in the other two examples, the two members of the committee who are not lawyers often bring a very important dimension and a very clear understanding of what the court means to the legal life of our country. I admire them very much.
The 2019 process was opened on April 18 to fill the seat. Candidates were required to submit their applications by midnight Pacific time on Friday, May 17. That was a period of four weeks. I think we'll come back and discuss this a little. One of the challenges we face is the timing of this.
Of the three examples or three iterations of this committee's work, two were done to replace judges who took early retirement. For replacing the chief justice, we had more time, because her retirement was anticipated. She retired close to her retirement age. I think one challenge, which I want to come back and make some suggestions about, is that when justices of the Supreme Court of Canada take early retirement, this changes the time frame in which it's sometimes most convenient or appropriate to engage in the search process, particularly if we want to ensure that the court is up to full complement at the beginning of a new season of its work.
The remaining advisory board members were announced only on May 15, but as soon as the process was launched and I was confirmed to be the new chair, I set about making contact with all of the organizations that we contacted in the past iterations, to ask them to communicate with their members about the new opening and to encourage them to consider whether they would like to be considered as candidates for the new seat on the court. I didn't wait for the other committee members to be appointed but began right away to communicate. Again, I have some other comments I'd like to make about that process.
You know, of course, that I'm not going to repeat the requirements of the Supreme Court Act to have three civil law trained judges from Quebec. The quality of candidates was really outstanding. There were 12 candidates, which was perhaps about right. We had, I think, 12 or 14 candidates for the western seat.
The first seat we considered had many more candidates, because that was originally meant to be—and it was—a national competition. I will say that only one of the candidates was a woman. Again, that is something that the committee members were disappointed about. There were no indigenous applicants in this process. I think we want to talk about how we can encourage a broader range of Canadians to apply. I will give you some of my reflections on why we have encountered those issues.
The board members, first of all, convened via teleconference. We then met in Ottawa between May 27 and June 7 to discuss our evaluations and to proceed with our methodology of identifying and looking at candidates individually before we came together again—to avoid groupthink, to avoid too much influence before each of us had the opportunity to independently review.
Before that, though, we came on May 21 to meet with the chief justice. As you know, it's been our tradition to meet with the chief justice before setting out on our business. This was our first opportunity, obviously, to meet with the new chief justice, Chief Justice Wagner. As in the other two cases, we found that our meeting with the chief justice really helped to set us up for our work by reminding us of the reality of life on the Supreme Court of Canada, of what is required and what some of the things are we should be looking for as we interact with our candidates.
I think what was interesting for us in talking to Chief Justice Wagner—those are confidential conversations, but I don't think he said anything that he hasn't said to Canadians more broadly—was that, as with the other meetings we had with Chief Justice McLachlin, there was an emphasis on the importance of collegiality. Again, one wants justices who have strong views and who are capable of expressing themselves, but collegiality on the Supreme Court of Canada is not groupthink. It is the ability to try, as much as possible, to create clarity and judgments that become the architecture of Canadian law and that are so important for lower courts and practitioners. This ability to work toward the clearest possible elaboration of the court's views on issues is a very important part of the temperament of a constructive Supreme Court justice.
The other thing that was very interesting was when Chief Justice Wagner talked to us about the uniqueness of the Supreme Court of Canada as both bilingual and bijuridical. Now, we knew, of course, that for our judges, one of the requirements for our candidates has been that they be functionally bilingual. The Supreme Court Act requires that there be three civil law trained judges on the court from Quebec, although Justice Martin is also a civil law trained judge, so the strength of civil law capacity on the court is certainly well established. He made a very interesting comment about how unique this makes our Supreme Court and how, in terms of the way other courts around the world look at our judgments, we have a very special set of competences among our justices. I know that certainly many common law judges enjoy the opportunity to study the civil law because it's a different route, often, to getting to the same answer.
That really put our work in a different context in the sense that we weren't just looking to fulfill the requirements of the Supreme Court Act. We were working on an exercise that helped define our court more broadly in the world as uniquely extremely broad in its juridical competence. I think we felt quite inspired by that notion. Of course, the candidates we interviewed were quite outstanding in that regard.
After meeting with the chief justice and doing our work, we presented our short list to the Prime Minister.
I'm very happy to answer your questions, but I would just like to conclude with this comment. I notice that since 2011 there have been nine nominations, including Justice Kasirer, to the Supreme Court. I remember the first meeting we had with Chief Justice McLachlin. She felt that the ability to commit, say, 10 years to the work on the court was highly valuable for a Supreme Court justice simply because it takes time to ramp up, to get up and running, and to find your feet, but also because continuity and a lack of disruption are very important.
However, clearly, there are reasons for judges to not necessarily serve their full time on the court.
In terms of getting the quickest response from strong candidates to the opportunity to be considered as a candidate for the court when retirements come, or early retirements come, we have talked about a process—and I would be very interested in the views of members of the committee on how this might be approached—as a way of starting an ongoing conversation with members of the Canadian judiciary in all of the provinces and senior members of the profession, about what it means to serve on the Supreme Court of Canada. What are some of the nuances, what are some of the requirements? I say this because it's a very difficult job.
It isn't just that one has to be an outstanding legal thinker, but that one also has to move to the national capital region, to Ottawa, and often at a stage in life when a spouse's career may be at its most active and prominent stage of development, when family obligations make it difficult.
I think that having a broader conversation with people in the profession about what is required to be on the court so that there is greater knowledge of what it actually means might, first of all, enable us to encourage even more people to apply. I think, particularly for women, if they have families and are likely to have spouses who also have careers, this might be something that could overcome some reservations.
If this were an ongoing conversation, as opposed to something that we scramble to do just in the face of an imminent departure from the court and the need to recruit a new candidate, I think it might be something that could broaden the scope of the candidates.
Again, as I've said, we do reach out to a broad range of organizations of lawyers and judges in Canada, but I think that in finding people who are perhaps members of groups that are under-represented, having an ongoing process of making candidacy for the Supreme Court of Canada less daunting and more appealing, or certainly to at least allow for a greater, more informed view, so that people do not come to the court and find that it really is difficult for them to serve and that their expectations are not the reality, is something that we need to think about. I say this because we, again, have an outstanding court and a court that, in the context of world courts, is unique and whose work is highly regarded. We want to ensure that no person—no man or woman or member of any ethnic group or identification in Canada—is ever discouraged from presenting themselves as a candidate because of either a lack of confidence in what it might mean or a lack of knowledge.
I will stop here and will be very happy to answer your questions. I appreciate you, Mr. Chairman, and your committee for accommodating me to be able to speak to you from Vancouver because I sure needed my sleep last night.
Thank you.
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
Thank you, Mr. Chair, and good afternoon, everyone.
I first of all want to acknowledge something that is on everyone's mind today, which is the passing of a colleague and a friend to many. On behalf of our government and my family, I want to extend my deepest condolences to the family of Mark Warawa, my colleague, and to our colleagues from the Conservative Party and many others who have lost a friend today.
I would also like to take a moment to recognize that I am speaking to you from Treaty No. 7 territory. Such acknowledgements are important, particularly when we are meeting to talk about doing resource development the right way. Our government's approach to the Trans Mountain expansion project and the start of the construction season is a great example of that—of resource development done right.
Let me also begin by recognizing that I know this expansion project inspires strong opinions on both sides—for and against—and with respect to both sides of the debate, I want to assure everyone that our government took the time required to do the hard work necessary to hear all voices, to consider all evidence and to be able to follow the guidance we received from the Federal Court of Appeal last August.
That included asking the National Energy Board to reconsider its recommendation, taking into account the environmental impact of project-related marine shipping. It also included relaunching phase III consultations with indigenous groups potentially impacted by the project, by doing things differently and engaging in a meaningful two-way dialogue.
On that note, I would like to take a moment to sincerely thank the many indigenous communities that welcomed me into their communities for meetings over the last several months. I appreciate your openness, your honesty and your constructive ideas and sincerity of views.
Honourable members, no matter where you stand on TMX, this decision is a positive step forward for all Canadians. It shows how in 2019, good projects can move forward when we do the hard work necessary to meet our duty to consult indigenous peoples and when we take concrete action to protect the environment for our kids, grandkids and future generations.
When we came into office, we took immediate steps to fix the broken review system the Conservatives left behind. When the risks made it too difficult for the private sector to move forward, we stepped in to save the project. When the Federal Court of Appeal made its decision back in August of 2018, we made the choice to move forward in the right way.
When we finished this process, we were able to come to the right decision to deliver for workers in our energy sector, for Albertans and for all Canadians, a decision to support a project that will create jobs, diversify markets, support clean energy and open up new avenues for indigenous economic prosperity in the process.
Where do we go from here, now that the expansion has been approved? While these are still early days, we have a clear path forward for construction to begin this season and beyond. The Prime Minister laid out a lot of this on Tuesday afternoon as he announced our decision. Minister Morneau expanded on some of these details when he was in Calgary yesterday, talking about the road ahead and about launching exploratory discussions with indigenous groups interested in economic participation and about using TMX's revenues to ensure Canada is a leader in providing more energy choices.
We have also heard from the Trans Mountain Corporation about both its readiness and its ambition to get started on construction. Ian Anderson, the CEO of the Trans Mountain Corporation, made this very clear yesterday.
That's also what I heard when I visited with Trans Mountain Corporation workers yesterday in Edmonton. There were a number of contractors there. They are ready to proceed on the expansion of the Edmonton terminal, as well as on many of the pumping stations that are required to be built in this expansion.
The message is clear. We want to get shovels in the ground this season, while continuing to do things differently in the right way.
The NEB will soon issue an amended certificate of public convenience and necessity for the project. It will also ensure that TMC has met the NEB's binding pre-construction conditions. The Trans Mountain Corporation, meanwhile, will continue to advance its applications for municipal, provincial and federal permits. We stand ready to get the federal permits moving.
As all of that is happening, our government continues to consult with indigenous groups, building and expanding our dialogue with indigenous groups as part of phase IV consultations by discussing the potential impacts of the regulatory process on aboriginal and treaty rights and by working with indigenous groups to implement the eight accommodation measures that were co-developed during consultations, including building marine response capacity, restoring fish and fish habitats, enhancing spill prevention, monitoring cumulative effects and conducting further land studies.
We are also moving forward with the NEB's 16 recommendations for enhancing marine safety, protecting species at risk, improving how shipping is managed and boosting emergency response.
What is the bottom line? There is no doubt that there are a lot of moving parts. This is a project that stretches over 1,000 kilometres, but it is moving forward in the right way, as we have already proven with our $1.5-billion oceans protection plan, our $167-million whale initiative, our additional $61.5 million to protect the southern resident killer whale, and our investment of all of the new corporate tax revenues, as well as profits earned from the sale of TMX, in the clean energy projects that will power our homes, businesses and communities for generations to come.
Before making a decision, we needed to be satisfied that we had met our constitutional obligations, including our legal duty to consult with indigenous groups potentially affected by the project, upholding the honour of the Crown and addressing the issues identified by the Federal Court of Appeal last summer.
We have done that. We accomplished this by doing the hard work required by the court, not by invoking sections of the Constitution that don't apply or by launching fruitless appeals, both of which would have taken longer than the process we brought in.
While Conservatives were focused on making up solutions that wouldn't work, we focused on moving this process forward in the right way. We have confirmation of that, including from the Honourable Frank Iacobucci, former Supreme Court justice, who was appointed as a federal representative to provide us with oversight and direction on the revised consultation and accommodation process.
I will close where I began, which is by saying that we have done the hard work necessary to move forward on TMX in the right way, proving that Canada can get good resource projects approved and that we can grow the economy and deliver our natural resources to international markets to support workers, their families and their communities, all while safeguarding the environment, investing in clean growth and advancing reconciliation with indigenous peoples.
Mr. Chair, I think this is a good place to stop and invite questions.
Thank you so much once again for having me here today.
View Kent Hehr Profile
Lib. (AB)
Just prior to my asking questions of the minister, I'd like to applaud the chair for his exceptional work and leadership for this committee. You've done excellent work.
Some hon. members: Hear, hear!
Hon. Kent Hehr: Minister, it's a thrill to have you back. I was in Calgary yesterday for Minister Morneau's presentation and his address to the Economic Club of Canada in Calgary. The excitement was present in the air, and there was a hop in the step of people in the room, which was good to see.
I think it's fair to say that last year's Federal Court of Appeal decision came somewhat out of the blue. The court said—and it was clear—that we needed to do our indigenous consultation better and our environmental considerations better.
I was chatting with Hannah Wilson in my office this morning, and I learned that this is happening not only here in Canada but also in the United States. In the case of Keystone XL, Enbridge Line 3 and other energy projects around the United States, the courts have been clear that this is the way things need to be done. Our government is trying to see that through, with indigenous consultation and environmental protections being at the forefront.
What was done differently this time, in consideration of the court decision that we were working with?
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
The process we put in place this time was quite different from what was done in past consultations.
First of all, we co-developed the engagement process with input from indigenous communities. We provided proper training to our staff and we doubled the capacity of our consultation teams. They worked tirelessly to engage in a meaningful two-way dialogue.
We also provided participation funding to indigenous communities so they could properly participate in the consultation process. We held more meetings and we met with indigenous communities in their communities. I personally held 45 meetings with indigenous communities and met with more than 65 leaders to listen to and engage with their concerns.
I am very proud of the outcome. We are offering accommodations to indigenous communities to deal with their concerns over fish, fish habitat, protection of cultural sites and burial grounds, as well as issues related to oil spills, the health of the Salish Sea, the southern resident killer whales, underwater noise and many others.
The accommodations we are offering, Mr. Chair, actually go beyond mitigating the impact of this project and will also go a long way toward resolving some of the issues and repairing some of the damage that has been done through industrial development in the Salish Sea. They will respond to many of the outstanding issues that communities have identified, related not only to this project but also to many of the other cumulative effects of the development that communities have experienced.
View Kent Hehr Profile
Lib. (AB)
Part of the approval of the pipeline was deeply linked to meaningful consultation with indigenous peoples. Are there ways we are ensuring that indigenous peoples meaningfully benefit from Trans Mountain in terms of jobs and other opportunities?
Also, I've heard some exciting things around possible equity stakes. Can you inform us about any of those conversations?
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
Yes, and a large number of indigenous communities have signed benefit agreements with the company. Those amount to close to $400 million of economic opportunities for indigenous communities. There are other communities that are still in discussions about economic benefits.
As Minister Morneau stated here in Calgary, he is launching a process whereby indigenous communities can explore options to purchase the pipeline or make other financial arrangements. This is something that I have personally heard, Mr. Chair, from a large number of communities that are interested in seeking economic opportunities for their communities to benefit from resource development. We see a lot of potential in that, and Minister Morneau is going to be leading that. Ownership by indigenous communities could be 25% or 50% or even 100%.
We are also providing funding for indigenous communities so that they'll be ready to participate in that process.
View Richard Cannings Profile
NDP (BC)
Thank you, Minister, for being with us today.
I'm going to pick up on that commentary about first nations consultation and accommodation. It was this aspect that caused the Federal Court of Appeal to rule against the government last year.
After the announcement that you were okaying the permit, I heard an interview with Chief Lee Spahan of the Coldwater band on CBC, and I've read interviews with him in the press since then. He said that “the meaningful dialogue that was supposed to happen never happened”. This is since the court case, and in that court case, the appeal court said that “missing from Canada's consultation was any attempt to explore how Coldwater's concerns could be addressed.”. This was a band that really wanted accommodation and demanded meaningful accommodation, as the courts have said, and they're saying that it hasn't happened.
I talked to Rueben George of the Tsleil-Waututh recently. They're not happy either.
How confident are you that we're not going back to litigation? It seems that the hard work that needed to be done still has not been done.
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
First of all, we acknowledge and appreciate the diversity of opinions on this project among indigenous communities, as among other Canadians.
I have met with Chief Lee a number of times. I have met with leadership of the Tsleil-Waututh, with the former chief and with Chief Leah, who is the current chief, to talk about these issues. As far as Coldwater is concerned, our discussions with them are continuing. There are a number of options we are exploring with them to deal with their outstanding issues.
Our consultation doesn't end because the approval of this project has been given. We will continue to work with them.
View Jamie Schmale Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you, Chair.
It seems the Liberals want it both ways here. They want to criticize this process, yet they approved the pipeline a few years ago in 2016.
I cannot understand how you want to have it both ways. You talk about indigenous consultation. Kinder Morgan had 51 indigenous groups that had signed benefit agreements. Because of your government's handling of this file, it went down to 42, and now you're expecting us to pat you on the back because it's at 48. I can't figure this one out.
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
I think it is very important, and I will encourage the honourable member to look at the Federal Court of Appeal decision. The appeal was very clear that when the decision was made to not undertake the study of tanker traffic and its impact on the marine environment, it was done completely under the Stephen Harper government.
We were in a good process—
View Jamie Schmale Profile
CPC (ON)
We're talking about consultation. You could have used the transport report as your transportation study. You chose not to. We're talking about consultation here.
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
You cannot do that. You have to discharge your duty to consult, which means that you have to engage in a two-way meaningful dialogue. Relying on a transportation report is not a substitute for discharging your section 35 obligations.
View Pam Damoff Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you, Minister. I have only about a minute left.
When the previous government talked about consultation, it really just meant showing up, telling people what they were doing and then moving ahead anyway. From a number of meaningful conversations I've had with your parliamentary secretary, I know you went into communities, talked to stakeholders and indigenous communities, and took that feedback. How did those consultations result in changes to what we're doing with TMX?
View Amarjeet Sohi Profile
Lib. (AB)
I think one of the fundamental differences is how we engaged with the communities, and also how we responded to their concerns. There are more accommodations offered in this than ever was done in the past. We're actually dealing with the cumulative impacts of development. We are engaging in how we better respond to spills; how we prevent spills from happening; how we protect water, fish, fish habitat, southern resident killer whales; how we protect cultural sites and burial grounds and all of those things that have been identified by indigenous communities.
Another thing that we have done differently is that we have engaged at the political level. You know, pipelines are controversial. The northern gateway was controversial. Energy east was controversial. The Trans Mountain pipeline expansion was controversial and is still controversial, but I compare the effort that we have put in and the effort that I have personally put in through the 45 meetings that I have held with indigenous communities. I compare that effort with the few meetings the Conservative ministers held with indigenous communities. For 10 years under Stephen Harper, ministers made no effort to actually meet with indigenous communities and listen to their concerns and then work with them to resolve those concerns. We have put our time in and we are very proud of the work we have done.
Brenda Lucki
View Brenda Lucki Profile
Brenda Lucki
2019-06-18 15:31
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Good afternoon, Mr. Chair and members of this committee.
Ladies and gentlemen, thanks for inviting me here to speak today.
I want to start by saying the RCMP takes all reported allegations of criminal activity and incidents very seriously and we are committed to continuing to provide services that are focused on the safety of our communities.
Such allegations could include the forced or coerced sterilization of women.
Following a consultation of the RCMP's contract divisions through their respective commanding officers, to date, we have no allegations on file for forced sterilization that were found to be reported to the RCMP directly. I've also taken the steps to reach out to the president of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police for assistance in raising the awareness among all the other police agencies. A bulletin was disseminated by the CACP to its member agencies and a report is expected in the near future. There are quite a few of them so they're still waiting for results.
It's important to note that the investigation of any allegations of forced or coerced sterilization would fall under the mandate of the police of jurisdiction. Therefore, any evidence of criminal activity should be reported to the local police of jurisdiction where offences are alleged to have taken place so that they can be properly investigated.
The RCMP proactively works with communities to identify, prioritize and solve problems, as well as to build trust and faith in the RCMP as a police service.
This collaborative approach is based on the philosophy that prevention is a core responsibility of policing, where decisions are evidence-based and responses should be community-led, police-supported, sustainable and flexible. The RCMP has been part of these efforts in many communities across Canada and will continue to reach out with professionalism and compassion to enhance trust with the communities we serve.
I have to add that compassion is one of our core values, but honestly, as part of our modernization, I don't think compassion is good enough. I think we need to bump it up to empathy. It falls in line not just with reconciliation but.... If we can all learn—when I say “we” I'm talking about my organization—to walk a mile in somebody's shoes, I think we would have a better understanding of others' circumstances and they would be treated differently if we had that understanding. Part of this is teaching people from the day they get into the organization and reteaching everybody along the way. In some effects, we've introduced at the training academy, for example, the Kairos blanket exercise, which is one way of teaching more empathy and more history.
In addition to contributing to a safer and healthier indigenous community, it's one of the key priorities of the RCMP. Protecting all Canadians from criminal activity is of the utmost importance. We're committed to protecting our communities and to achieving reconciliation with indigenous communities and partners through a renewed relationship built on the recognition of rights, respect, mutual trust, co-operation and partnership.
I would be happy to answer your questions.
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