moved, seconded by the member for Nanaimo—Cowichan, for leave to introduce Bill C-503, An Act to amend the Department of Justice Act and make consequential amendments to another Act (aboriginal or treaty rights).
Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for Nanaimo—Cowichan for seconding my bill. She is known as a very knowledgeable and highly respected member of the aboriginal affairs committee. I want to express my gratitude for the fact that she was prepared to support a bill from someone from another political party.
The bill would require that all draft bills and regulations be reviewed prior to their presentation to ensure they do not abrogate from the protection provided for existing aboriginal or treaty rights as affirmed by section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, and that any such inconsistency be reported to the House.
I had the good fortune of being a member of that committee for a year. I have learned that there is a need to have an overarching review of some of the legislation that comes forward to ensure we do not abrogate from treaty rights and aboriginal rights.
A couple of years ago I had the good fortune of introducing a bill to create a national cemetery, which was also supported by members from other parties. At the time, I offered the government to make it its own, should it so wish and I wish to reiterate that offer. If the government believes that it can support and introduce the legislation I have, I would be quite prepared to have the government make it its own so that it can become law sooner rather than later.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)