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Bill C-36: Senate debate transcript & summary (Dec 9)

December 10, 2010 at 10:32 am · by josh · Filed under Health: General, Social Awakening & Sovereignty

Yesterday in the Canadian Senate debates on Bill C-36, Liberal Senators Day, Cordy and Banks all had rousing arguments yesterday in defense of Canadians’ rights, and pointing out things wrong with C-36 and the overall legislative process that’s happened.

Senator Day is also continuing to make a very strong case for much more time to be made for this bill to be looked at in depth, rather than rushed through at the Government’s seeming request. It’s evident that he and many other Senators (mostly Liberal) are likewise not comfortable with its removing the judicial “Rule of Law” process in favour of granting Health Canada carte blanche. In addition, it was again mentioned how Shawn’s appearance has been unfairly blocked, and how they have not been listening to Canadians nearly enough. We are making a difference…!!!

The transcript in full, posted this morning, is quite interesting indeed:

Here’s a good snippet, starting with Senator Day’s closing comments:

Senator Day speaking:

…Honourable senators, my office has received almost 1,000 emails requesting that the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology take the time to hear from witnesses who are familiar with the proposed legislation and to consider carefully the powers being sought by the government and ensuring that they are necessary and desirable.

Mr. Shawn Buckley was recommended as a possible witness, but the senators on the government side have refused to hear from him, and I asked myself why. Mr. Buckley is a very reputable constitutional lawyer and is highly qualified, probably one of the most qualified on this proposed legislation of anyone in Canada. We heard from Mr. Buckley in the previous version of this bill when it was Bill C-6, and he was very informative and insightful. Naturally, when the bill was reintroduced, he was the person we immediately suggested should be brought in to discuss the changes, those changes that were not made, as well as to enlighten us on the strengths and weaknesses of this new legislation being proposed. Unfortunately, the Conservative senators unanimously voted down Senator Cordy’s motion to allow Mr. Buckley to appear before the committee.

Senator Mercer: Shame.

Senator Tardif: Shame.

Senator Day: Honourable senators, I made a second motion to extend the hearing times for one more session to allow additional outside witnesses to be heard. Sadly, this too was defeated unanimously by the Conservative majority on the committee.

Honourable senators, I received 10 written submissions regarding Bill C-36 from organizations whose submissions could have been very helpful to us. They were from the Asper School of Business at the University of Manitoba, Canadian Consumer Specialty Products Association, Canadian Consumer Product Safety Coalition, Canadian Toy Association, Canadian Environmental Law Association, Health Action Network Society, Natural Health Products Protection Association, David Suzuki Foundation, Consumer Interest Alliance Inc. and Johnson & Johnson Inc.

Honourable senators, allow me just quote from the Health Action Network Society:

Our organization has been told that we are unable to make a presentation to your Committee on Bill C-36, and have been asked to write to you instead. There is something missing when you cannot meet face to face, unfortunately, but here are our points: . . . .

Honourable senators, that letter is typical of the letters we received concerning this proposed legislation. These people were cut off for some reason from coming, and many of them would have told us that this legislation was improved over the previous legislation but there were certain other portions that should have been made.

Honourable senators, this should illustrate to us that we have not done our job on this bill. It should also indicate that we have offended a large segment of society by rushing this process for no reason. There was absolutely no reason to rush this process because we all agreed —

Senator Mitchell: However, they might prorogue again.

Senator Day: — with the fundamental principle. The principle of the bill was universally agreed upon. It is difficult to understand why partisan politics should interfere with ensuring that the bill gets the attention it deserves, honourable senators.

Some Hon. Senators: Hear, hear!


Subsequently to this section, Senator Cordy spoke of her problem with the broad scope of power granted to “foreign entities” in the bill; and Senator Banks introduced an amendment to grant some actual privacy protection.

There is indication that with respect to these proceedings, the tide is turning in the favour of the Canadian people. We need to keep the pressure on, and continue spreading the word about this extremely dangerous legislation.  Thank you for being part of this movement!

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