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Results: 1 - 15 of 3325
View Tamara Jansen Profile
Madam Speaker, I am so glad that my colleague invoked the words of the prophet Micah, so I am going to invoke the words of the Apostle Matthew, who stated:
Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean.
I have had so many people reach out to me in regard to this bill. Charlotte, a young woman in Calgary, was involved in lesbian activity. She struggled with self-worth and depression. She reached a point in her life when she did not want to continue with her lesbian activity, and her parents supported her choice and helped her find a counsellor who helped her process the feelings. She said:
Because of the counselling, I had a deep sense of love and acceptance. It was not harmful, coercive or abusive in any way.... If you enact the proposed bill, you're banning the exact support that I desperately needed at that time in my life. If this bill is to be truly inclusive, include people like me.
Why will the government not respond to—
View Rachel Blaney Profile
Madam Speaker, I want to thank the member so much for his speech. It was better the second time because it was not interrupted.
I am also grateful to be a part of the House as we look at this important legislation. I recognize this bill will not fix the historic wounds of conversion therapy, nor will it fix the homophobia and transphobia we still see in so many of our communities. I wonder if the member could talk about what the Liberal government will do to build capacity within the SOGIE community so that these challenges can be addressed by the community.
View Kerry-Lynne Findlay Profile
Madam Speaker, I rise today not to debate a ban on coercive conversion therapy, but instead to debate the means by which we ban this harmful, damaging practice. I want to make one thing very clear from the outset: I am against forcibly attempting to change an individual’s sexual orientation. I condemn that practice in the strongest possible terms. There is simply no place for this in Canada.
However, there is a place in Canada for compassion. At the justice committee, of which I am a member, we heard testimony from a variety of stakeholders on this bill, including survivors of coercive conversion therapy, members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community, indigenous leaders, academics, doctors, lawyers and faith leaders. I thank all the witnesses for their contributions, especially those who had the strength and courage to share their very personal experiences. I know it could not have been easy.
It is evident to me from having heard these witnesses, read countless briefs and spoken to dozens of constituents that there is a widespread support for banning coercive conversion therapy practices, and there should be. However, as with all legislation, the language must be clear. We need to ensure that judges can interpret and apply the law as it is written, and that Canadians know what the law prohibits and what it does not: in other words, whom it protects and whom it does not. On this point, I have heard repeatedly that the bill’s definition of conversion therapy is unclear and overbroad, as my colleague just said, and may have unintended consequences.
For earlier Liberal speakers to say that those with any concerns are against the communities we are trying to help, and speak from fear, is a harmful, wrong-minded statement. The Minister of Justice has said that the bill would not affect good-faith conversations, which I understand to mean caring, non-coercive discussions with doctors, parents, counsellors, faith leaders or others to whom Canadians, young and old, may turn for support. However, the bill, as drafted, does not say that. Why not? As we all know, what matters is not what the minister says the bill will do, but what the bill actually says. That is the law. That is what judges will apply, from Victoria to St. John’s.
Several witnesses appearing before the committee called for amendments to the bill to clarify its definition, to make it clear that it does not criminalize these good-faith conversations. Coercive conversion therapy should be banned, but we should leave politicization out and remember that we are dealing with real people with real vulnerabilities trying to make their way and needing help at a vulnerable time. We need to clarify, then proceed. The government should welcome the broadest possible support among Canadians for this legislation: nothing more, nothing less.
In fact, when the committee first heard from the Minister of Justice on this bill, the minister admitted, “I will focus on the bill's definition of conversion therapy, because there appears to be some persisting confusion about its scope.” I agree with the minister. There is persisting confusion, and the confusion is about its scope, confusion that we, as parliamentarians, have a duty to rectify.
André Schutten, legal counsel and director of law and policy at the Association for Reformed Political Action Canada, or ARPA, told the committee the definition is ambiguous, unclear and overbroad, and that it “captures helpful counselling and psychological support for children, teens, and adults”.
Colette Aikema explained to the committee that the counselling she received to help her cope with past traumas, including abuse and rape, would be criminalized by this definition of conversion therapy. Ms. Aikema told the committee that her voluntary therapy from a University of Lethbridge counsellor and a faith-based sex addiction group helped save both her marriage and her life. This was powerful testimony that should not be ignored.
We also heard from Timothy Keslick, a member of the 2SLGBTQ+ community, who fears that without further clarification, the therapy he relies on to help him navigate his same-sex relationships would be barred by the bill’s ban on treatment that “repress[es] or reduce[s] non-heterosexual attraction or sexual behaviours”.
Others also expressed the need to clarify the definition of conversion therapy in the bill—
View Dan Albas Profile
Madam Speaker, yesterday history was made. The Leader of the Opposition shared his vision for a climate plan, aptly named “Secure the Environment”. It is bold and addresses challenging topics such as carbon leakage. Our plan has been independently assessed by Navius Research. Our plan would effectively achieve the same emissions reductions as the Liberal plan.
I was encouraged to see well-respected climate organizations such as Clean Prosperity call this plan “a significant step in the right direction”. It was also encouraging to see the Canadian Federation of Independent Business immediately recognize the benefits of our plan that would fix the unfair cross-subsidization burden imposed on businesses by the Liberal plan.
We all get that the current Liberal government does not like ideas that are not from its own cabinet, but let us not forget that every single climate plan and every target that a Liberal government has set, going back as far as 1993, has massively failed. For the sake of our climate, I implore the Minister of Environment to drop the juvenile partisan political response he put out yesterday, let us—
View Gord Johns Profile
View Gord Johns Profile
2021-04-16 11:27 [p.5743]
Madam Speaker, small businesses have been on the front line of the pandemic, and many are not able to weather further restrictions without more help from the government. These entrepreneurs want assurances that next week's budget will provide them with the support they desperately need. New Democrats are listening to small business owners, and they have been clear that the Liberal government needs to further expand the CEBA loan to help more struggling businesses, extend the program to get them through this next wave and give businesses until 2025 to repay what they owe.
Will the government support our call to immediately increase CEBA by another $20,000, and make sure small businesses can get back on their feet?
View Taylor Bachrach Profile
Madam Speaker, Canadians have been waiting for over a year for Air Canada to return their hard-earned money for cancelled trips. While the Liberals stood by, thousands of jobs have been lost across the air sector. It should never have taken over a year to get help to airline workers or to make families whole by providing refunds.
After months of pushing the government to do the right thing, it finally had come to an agreement. However, without a real enforcement mechanism, the government is left relying on Air Canada.
While the minister take an active role in resolving disputes and ensuring Canadians are properly refunded?
View Patrick Weiler Profile
Lib. (BC)
Madam Speaker, for years the Highway of Tears has been an unsafe route for indigenous women and girls. Families of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls, and survivors have highlighted the connection between these heinous acts and the gaps in cellular service along Canadian highways, especially in rural and remote areas.
Can the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development update the House on the steps our government has taken to enhance safety, particularly for indigenous women and girls, along Highway 16?
View Kerry-Lynne Findlay Profile
Madam Speaker, the Wall Street Journal, “Canada's Vaccine Rollout Lags Behind as Cases Rise”; CNN, “Canadian vaccine rollout is not going well at all”; The Atlantic, “Canada’s Vaccine Mess”; and The Guardian says that Ontario starts one-month lockdown as cases surge.
Apparently, Canada’s Prime Minister thinks these American and U.K. publications are peddling fake news. Will the Prime Minister be honest with Canadians and admit vaccine availability is his failed responsibility?
View Richard Cannings Profile
Madam Speaker, a report from Environmental Defence concludes the Liberals gave at least $18 billion to the fossil fuel industry last year, despite their stated goal to move the country to a post-carbon economy. The Minister of Natural Resources has pointed out in this House that the majority of Canadians voted for serious action on climate change. When will the Liberals listen to those Canadians, and take urgent and bold action on climate change instead of throwing billions of dollars at the fossil fuel sector?
View Jody Wilson-Raybould Profile
Ind. (BC)
Madam Speaker, I think I speak for the vast majority of Canadians when I say that we do not want an election during the third wave of this pandemic, particularly one clearly motivated by partisan opportunism. That said, an election unfortunately still remains a possibility, so I will ask a very specific question.
Can the minister please advise whether the government has any intention of seeing Bill C-19 become law, whether the Chief Electoral Officer has indicated he is COVID prepared and how quickly after royal assent he would be able to give notice that the temporary changes are in force?
View Rachel Blaney Profile
Madam Speaker, I rise to present petition e-2738, which received over 2,000 signatures.
The petitioners are asking the Minister of Health to hear that many Canadians oppose herbicides being used by the forestry industry that prevent the natural return of forest biodiversity, and ask that the minister take leadership and ban the commercial use of herbicides in the forestry industry in Canada with the exception of addressing invasive species.
View Paul Manly Profile
View Paul Manly Profile
2021-04-16 12:23 [p.5753]
Madam Speaker, it is an honour to table petition e-3108, which has over 3,000 signatures and was initiated by constituents in Nanaimo—Ladysmith.
The petitioners note that natural, time-tested immune system essentials and holistic health practices do not receive enough attention for their role in preventative health care. They request that the Government of Canada educate and empower Canadians on holistic health approaches to optimize and maintain their natural immunity and well-being. They ask to cover practices for health sustainability and wellness care under the Canada Health Act, including chiropractic care, massage therapy, acupuncture and naturopathic medicines. They ask the government to support, promote and enhance Canadians' access to holistic health services and natural health products.
View Elizabeth May Profile
View Elizabeth May Profile
2021-04-16 12:24 [p.5753]
Madam Speaker, it is an honour to rise virtually in the House today to present a petition from a number of constituents. It is a petition that originated some time ago. It is slightly dated, but so many petitioners have asked for it to be submit it.
I do submit a petition calling for the government to take note of the fact, which is not dated and remains the case, that there is no established method for cleaning up a spill that involves bitumen diluted with diluent, that the Trans Mountain pipeline represents a threat to coastal communities and a threat to climate.
The petitioners call on the Government of Canada to reject the idea of buying and building the Trans Mountain pipeline at a cost of what was estimated at that time, but has risen to be over $10 billion.
View Tamara Jansen Profile
Madam Speaker, I am honoured to present a petition today concerning Bill C-6.
The petitioners recognize the need for a ban on harmful, degrading and coercive practices that seek to force people to change their sexual orientation. They also recognize, however, that the definition of conversion therapy used in Bill C-6 is not used by any medical body in the world and it is so imprecise that it will lead to the prohibition of forms of counselling that reduce unwanted sexual behaviour.
I am sure my colleagues can understand the damaging implications of this, and I remind them that committee witnesses testified that types of counselling this bill would ban actually saved their lives.
View Elizabeth May Profile
View Elizabeth May Profile
2021-04-16 12:32 [p.5755]
Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague.
I am very disappointed in this bill. Other countries, such as England and New Zealand, have much stronger legislation. They passed bills with hard-hitting measures that will truly tackle the perils of climate change.
Bill C-12 is the weakest bill in the world.
What does my Bloc Québécois colleague think about the fact that the Minister of the Environment did not compare existing laws elsewhere in the world to come up with measures that work?
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