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View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
Over the past few exchanges, we've heard a little bit about Bill C-59 and the other forms of oversight or review that might be put in place. In respect of the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency, NSIRA, how would you see the complementarity between the review agency and yourself?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you. It's been an interesting conversation.
I'm really interested in the role between the two organizations, with NSIRA coming into place.
When I was asking questions of an earlier witness, I talked about how there can be differential impacts to legislation on different communities and different groups. From your experience as a review organization that's already looked at national security issues, do you have any suggestions as to what we should be looking for when developing NSIRA, how to take into account those differential impacts, and what tools we should have in our tool box so that oversight can balance against the differentials?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
It's something to be mindful of as we organize NSIRA and develop it.
Therefore, you don't see any legislative changes, because there were some suggestions about how the composition may look for that agency, and whether this differential impact should be taken into account. Or it can be something that's completely outside of the legislation. It's just more viewpoints as to how we have our tool box, what we hand them as their procedures and rules on how they operate.
Do you have any question on that, on the composition issue?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you to all of you for coming to talk with us today.
One of the issues that I'm particularly interested in when I look at all of this is the question of oversight and accountability in the bill and how that's been arranged.
We've heard a number of people come to talk about—and I know we said we were going to try to avoid acronyms—NSIRA, and how that's great because it gets past all the silos that we've had in the past, which have been a problem. Last week we had a witness from the Canadian Bar Association. He presented an interesting quandary about whether it is too broad now.
Is the way “national security” is defined for the NSIRA review too broad? Given your own experience and the transitional role that gets played, how do you see that? Do you see any concerns about the definition of “national security” for the NSIRA review?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
The breadth isn't a concern for you in the definition of “national security” in the statute for NSIRA?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
All right. Thank you. That was very helpful.
I just want to make sure I have it clear, because I'm trying to look for some concrete things that I can apply when we're looking at this legislation.
In taking into account, for example, NSIRA composition, there have been all sorts of suggestions and recommendations made by others as to how that should look. You said we should ensure there's a proper diversity, a philosophical diversity, and that it should be part of the lens that's approached.
If I were going to give any other concrete solution that I might try to put in here, do you have anything else you would like to see us do, specifically?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
I'm happy you were able to get that in.
I've mentioned this before over the past hearings. One of the big issues for people in my community, one of the things that has come up a lot, is ensuring that there is proper oversight across our national security agencies.
I wanted to start with a point that you had raised, Mr. Edelmann. You suggested that in fact NSIRA is overly broad, which is a different perspective from what I've often heard. It seemed to me that the idea of having a broad institution that breaks across the silos was exactly what we were trying to get to. Would that be solved by having a different definition for national security? You had mentioned national security as being part of the problem.
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
But how would we cure it? At this point we have legislation in front of us. From your perspective, what would you like to see us do to dig into that problem?
View Julie Dabrusin Profile
Lib. (ON)
I only have one minute, so perhaps this becomes a very short answer.
Another issue is CBSA oversight, which is a question that comes up in my community. People ask about it.
There isn't any independent oversight under our current regime. Under the Bill C-59 regime, is there CBSA oversight?
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