Welcome to the new and improved Green Caucus Week in Review! This week is the first of five sitting weeks in a row. This is a very busy time for Jenica, Paul and Elizabeth. The federal budget will be tabled on April 19th, and there remains many pieces of important legislation to be worked through before June. Read on for this week’s highlights, as well as petitions and articles for further reading. Also, follow our MPs on social media for daily commentary!
Banning Glyphosate in Canada
Thursday was a historic day for Jenica as she presented her first ever Private Members Bill to ban the use of Glyphosate, a toxic herbicide used in forestry and agriculture. In the context of Laval’s decision to ban glyphosate in city limits this week, Jenica called on the government to join the growing global consensus recognizing that Glyphosate has been deemed a probable carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).The press release announcing Jenica’s PMB and the text of the bill can both be found online.
On Monday in Question Period, Paul pointed out that the Bank of Canada used to provide low interest loans to build public infrastructure. He asked if the government would go back to borrowing from the Bank of Canada after paying 1,300,000,000,000 in interest – that’s 1.3 trillion taxpayer dollars – on loans from private banks and foreign lenders since 1974.
In her question on Tuesday, Jenica pointed out that while big corporations have raked in profits during the pandemic, regular Canadians are facing extreme financial hardship. She confronted the government for not increasing the capital gains tax or implementing a wealth tax. She called for the upcoming budget to include a fair path towards prosperity for all Canadians.
In Question Period on Thursday, Elizabeth again drew attention to Canada’s abysmal climate record. She pointed out that carbon emissions and fossil fuel subsidies are still increasing, while the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers met with the government in a secret committee during the pandemic. Elizabeth asked the Minister of the Environment to improve Canada’s climate target at the climate summit to be held by President Biden next week.
Pursuing fairness in Question Period
The Green caucus continued its push for a fair allocation of questions during Question Period this week, with both a Unanimous Consent motion and a Point of Order. Paul moved the Unanimous Consent motion
on Tuesday. It would have doubled the amount of questions allocated to MPs that do not belong to one of the four big parties, and was expected to succeed, with all parties having claimed prior to support it. However, the motion was denied at the last minute by the Conservative House Leader. Elizabeth moved a Point of Order
on Thursday, appealing to the speaker to stand up for democracy and fairness where the Conservative Caucus would not. The Speaker is expected to return with a reply in the coming days.
Questions and Statements
Jenica Atwin tables first PMB, to ban Glyphosate in Canada
Paul Manly: The government should borrow from the Bank of Canada for public infrastructure funding
Jenica Atwin: Will the upcoming budget be a pathway to a fair and more prosperous Canada?
Elizabeth May: PM must update Canada’s climate target at Biden’s Earth Summit next week
Jenica Atwin: We should examine all tools for addressing systemic racism in Canada
Paul Manly: The government should have invoked Emergencies Act to coordinate pandemic response
Elizabeth May: The budget must be more informative and more transparent
Paul Manly seeks Unanimous Consent to allow members from non-recognized parties to ask more questions
Paul Manly: Would the Member support a national Indigenous Urban Housing Strategy?
Paul Manly: Decriminalizing the use and simple possession of drugs?
Elizabeth May rises on a Point of Order to request more questions be allocated to Greens during QP
Elizabeth May: Laurentian University is the canary in educational coal mine. We will fight for it.
Elizabeth May presents a petition on COVID-19 ‘long haulers’
Elizabeth May’s statement on the occasion of the passing of Prince Philip
Elizabeth May supports “right to repair” bill
Debate on Bill C-15
Jenica Atwin on federal UNDRIP bill: Can I believe in Canada this time?
Jenica Atwin: Resource extraction does more harm than good to First Nations
Jenica Atwin: Why is Canada’s UNDRIP bill hesitant to use the word “racism”?
Jenica Atwin: We should speak of reparations rather than reconciliation
Elizabeth May: Government claims to support free, prior and informed consent, but bought TMX without it
Paul Manly: UNDRIP legislation has not stopped the silencing of First Nations
e-3206 Include long-term care in the Canada Health Act (closes April 25)
e-3301 Stop logging old-growth ecosystems (closes April 25)
e-3218 Reduce violent crime (closes May 2)
e-3014 Modernize the complaints review panel of the Canadian Judicial Council (closes May 7)
e-3221 Reduce emissions to meet the Paris target (closes May 11)
e-3256 Protect the Kavango basin region (closes May 11)
e-3075 Halt all transfer of Canadian made weapons to Saudi Arabia (closes May 27)
e-3138 Make Election Day a paid holiday when it falls on a weekday (closes May 29)
e-3307 Review the Victims Bill of Rights (closes May 30)
e-3159 Ban new strip mines in the Rocky Mountains (closes June 5)
e-3164 Implement a national living wage (closes June 29)
Parliament’s “rising star” tables her first Private Members Bill to protect health and wellness of Canadians
Private Member’s Bill C-285, An Act to amend the Pest Control Products Act (glyphosate)
Lone wolf MPs break down what it‘s like to be a region‘s solitary party voice (Hill Times)
MLA calls Higgs ‘racist’ after First Nations tax move (Telegraph Journal)
MP Jenica Atwin tables private members‘ bill to ban the use of glyphosate in Canada (NB Media Co-op
Elizabeth May: Good Sunday Morning (April 11)