An Act to amend the Canada National Parks Act (Ojibway National Urban Park of Canada)


Brian Masse  NDP

Introduced as a private member’s bill. (These don’t often become law.)


Third reading (House), as of Feb. 8, 2023

Subscribe to a feed (what's a feed?) of speeches and votes in the House related to Bill C-248.


This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment amends the Canada National Parks Act to establish Ojibway National Urban Park of Canada.


All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, an excellent resource from the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.


June 8, 2022 Passed 2nd reading of Bill C-248, An Act to amend the Canada National Parks Act (Ojibway National Urban Park of Canada)

October 28th, 2022 / 2:30 p.m.
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Executive Director, Wildlands League

Janet Sumner

Yes, I think Bill C-248 allows us to move forward quickly, but also you have the consultation that happens around the park management plan. That's an ongoing process [Technical difficulty—Editor] in Rouge National Urban Park and [Technical difficulty—Editor] situation here, where it will be an ongoing process to manage that park management plan.

It also allows Parks Canada to engage in the broader ecosystem and be speaking to some of these issues that would be happening because of the increase in traffic.

October 28th, 2022 / 2:30 p.m.
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City Councillor, Ward 1, City of Windsor

Fred Francis

I do, and that's a great point. As you all know, Windsor hosts the busiest border crossing in all of North America. With the Gordie Howe International Bridge set to come online, that traffic and that intensity is going to increase.

The city supports Bill C-248 because it allows us to move quickly, because we really have an opportunity, and time is not on our side when we're talking about vehicular traffic increasing. We have an opportunity to move fast now and really safeguard this gem, and increase this gem and grow this gem now, and grow it for decades to come.

We know that the border traffic is not going to decrease. It's only going to increase, so the opportunity is now, in our opinion.

October 28th, 2022 / 2:25 p.m.
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Monique Pauzé Bloc Repentigny, QC

Thank you very much.

I thank the witnesses for being here with us.

If I understood correctly, you are all in favour of Bill C‑248. However, Parks Canada is already working on this and, as Mr. Francis was saying, you are working on two projects.

Earlier we were wondering about the use of Bill C‑248 when there is already a process under way. We were talking about time as a factor and saying that we could speed things up through Bill C‑248. We talked about protecting biodiversity.

My question is simple. Do we really need to go through the federal government? Would it not be faster to go through the provincial or municipal government?

October 28th, 2022 / 2:15 p.m.
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Damien Kurek Conservative Battle River—Crowfoot, AB

I appreciate that.

It's interesting that often the conversation is around the requirement for government to do something, when it's actually Parliament. Government is a function of Parliament. I think in a minority Parliament there are certainly some unique opportunities to forward these conversations.

To both the chief and the councillor, concerns have been raised about the challenges in consultations and some of the technicalities around boundaries and whatnot. Are you confident, given your experiences with Parks Canada and different levels of government, that if Bill C-248 passed, some of those challenges that have been highlighted could be overcome?

I'll go to the chief first.

October 28th, 2022 / 2:15 p.m.
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City Councillor, Ward 1, City of Windsor

Fred Francis

We support the legislation in Bill C-248 because it's a tried and true process. When we're talking about policy negotiation, we don't know what that entails. With legislation, there are firm parameters as to what that entails, to the point where the City of Windsor has offered its parcel to Parks Canada at no cost.

Not only that, but we know how significant it is to have a park run and established by Parks Canada—sooner rather than later—with Point Pelee. We've seen it. That allows us to protect this significant portion of land throughout our city forever. Future generations of Windsorites and, quite frankly, everyone in Essex County will be forever grateful to the federal government if we are able to move faster.

That's why we support this legislation that we're considering today. We know what that entails. It's concrete and it allows us to move forward sooner rather than later.

October 28th, 2022 / 2:10 p.m.
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Damien Kurek Conservative Battle River—Crowfoot, AB

Thank you very much. Thank you to the witnesses for joining us here today.

I've found over the course of debate—this being a private member's bill—that it seems as though there is significant support for the creation of this park. It remains interesting that all but two members of the government voted against the private member's bill, but the unique dynamic of a minority Parliament saw that it passed. It is now before this committee. It certainly provides some interesting opportunity for collaboration.

I listened with great interest—and I hope that the witnesses had a chance to listen—to the Parks Canada representatives earlier.

My question is for Chief Duckworth and Councillor Francis.

There seems to be a hang-up with the process. The government and Parks Canada have said that the process through a private member's bill is problematic, yet we've heard significant support for Bill C-248 moving forward. I'd like to open it up to both of you to provide some comments, particularly about the process question. We understand the support. On the process question, why do you support or not support Bill C-248 as the mechanism to create this park?

We'll start with Chief Duckworth.

October 28th, 2022 / 2:10 p.m.
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Janet Sumner Executive Director, Wildlands League

Good afternoon. Thank you for the invitation to speak.

My name is Janet Sumner. I am the executive director for Wildlands League. Wildlands is a not-for-profit charity that has been working in the public interest to protect public lands and resources since 1968.

At Wildlands, we have extensive knowledge of land use in Ontario and across Canada. We have a long history of working with governments—provincial, federal, indigenous and municipal—scientists, the public and resource industries on progressive conservation. We've published on a variety of issues, including the recent Hill Times article on the role of nature networks in urban areas and how they can play a key role in a federal plan to preserve biodiversity.

You may also have seen the results of our work in helping amend the Rouge National Urban Park Act to include ecological integrity as the management priority by law, thereby meeting the IUCN standard as a protected area. We celebrated this achievement with a community paddle of the Rouge, where we had 200 paddlers out for a Sunday paddle with the Prime Minister.

Wildlands thanks the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development for its attention to Bill C-248. Wildlands is a strong supporter of the need to create Ojibway national urban park, and I’ll explain why.

For the past few weeks in Ontario we have been witness to the most glorious displays of autumn splendour in recent memory. It's times like these when the beauty of nature is inescapable, even in the midst of our cities. We are fortunate that our work at Wildlands League routinely asks us to go out into nature, shake off the city and get inspired. We also get to see the threats and what is happening to nature first-hand.

I was raised in London, Ontario. As a family, we spent time on the shores of Lake Erie, and as a teenager, I visited Windsor, Chatham, Sarnia, Dorchester, St. Marys, Tillsonburg and back again every baseball season and hockey and soccer year. I know the back roads and the beauty of southern Ontario.

Today there are two main existential threats. These are the increasing climate chaos and the grave loss of biodiversity. In southern Ontario, there is both an incredible species diversity and Canada’s fastest-growing and largest urban population, yet barely 3% of the landscape is safeguarded by permanent legislated protection. It’s no surprise that the majority of Canada’s at-risk species are clinging to existence.

I'm actually going to jump ahead in my remarks so that I get this last point in.

What we hope to see is a nature network in Windsor, but we need to create it in the right way. We need to make sure that the legislation includes and prioritizes ecological integrity. Right now, moving forward with policy, we don't have that guarantee.

Further, the transfer of provincial lands, which are actually governed by the Ontario Provincial Parks and Conservation Reserves Act, does include ecological integrity as the management priority. If those lands are transferred, there is a risk that the transfer will actually downgrade protection in law.

That's why we fully support Bill C‑248, as do the City of Windsor and the chief of Caldwell First Nation. We would like to see protection of ecological integrity in law.

We also support the opportunity for co-management of the Ojibway national urban park and defer to the first nations on how they may want to move this forward.

Finally, I'll just—

October 28th, 2022 / 2 p.m.
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Fred Francis City Councillor, Ward 1, City of Windsor

Good afternoon. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to appear before this committee today to help move forward with Bill C-248 and the cause of Ojibway Park.

My name is Fred Francis, and on Monday I was re-elected to Windsor City Council. I am now entering my third term on council, and Ojibway Park falls within the boundaries of my ward.

Many don’t realize that when the City of Windsor first took ownership of this unique parcel of land, it was outside of our city limits. The nature preserve was acquired by the City of Windsor from the Canadian Salt Company in 1957, when this land was in the town of Ojibway, and we’ve been maintaining stewardship of this property ever since. Today, while the municipal boundaries may have changed, our intention remains the same: preserving as much of this pristine, environmentally sensitive land as possible for the enjoyment of future generations.

Residents in Windsor—Essex know that Ojibway Park is a fantastic local feature. The trails at Ojibway Park are an excellent family getaway, just minutes from our downtown core. Just as important, the unique microclimate of southwestern Ontario makes Ojibway Park a unique butterfly sanctuary, with species that can’t be found anywhere else in Canada.

Over the past few years, Windsor City Council has passed several resolutions in support of efforts to create a national urban park to link up the municipal, provincial and federal lands in Windsor’s west end to create a contiguous parcel as part of a new national urban park.

Our council has also unanimously endorsed the legislation that this committee is considering today. Simply put, Windsor deserves a national urban park managed and operated by Parks Canada, the same that exists in other parts of our great country. The example often cited is Rouge National Urban Park in east Toronto, but in southwestern Ontario, we know very well the benefits of Parks Canada ownership through the fantastic local resource at Point Pelee National Park.

The Parks Canada Agency was created to be a steward and operating entity for unique habitats across our nation and to create and run the programming associated with safe and ecologically sensitive recreation and tourism activities.

The City of Windsor has been doing our best to maintain this environmentally sensitive plant and animal habitat for several decades, and we operate the interpretive centre on site for student visits and teaching experiences. Earlier this fall, the City of Windsor hosted our formal Truth and Reconciliation Day events on September 30 at Ojibway Park.

Many Windsor residents will tell you that Ojibway Park is a special place, but we know that it could be so much more. Only through Parks Canada's ownership and operations can these separate federal, provincial and municipal lands be assembled and maintained to their fullest potential. Many in Windsor are concerned that the ongoing consultation activity is moving too slowly and is meant to distract from the core objective of Parks Canada's land ownership.

Taxpayers in Windsor are concerned that without Parks Canada's taking formal ownership and stewardship of these lands, any national urban park designation will be just another example of downloading onto our municipality. Simply put, either the federal government creates a national park at Ojibway or it doesn’t.

October 28th, 2022 / 1:35 p.m.
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Emmanuella Lambropoulos Liberal Saint-Laurent, QC

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

I'd like to thank Parks Canada for being our witness today to answer some of our questions.

This is my first time on the committee, so my apologies for not necessarily knowing the full length of the bill we're discussing. I did read briefly on Bill C-248 and I listened to your testimony.

Based on what you were saying, steps had already been undertaken prior to this legislation being introduced to the House to create a national urban park in Windsor. Therefore, I'm looking for a confirmation on this: Whether or not this legislation gets passed, will there be a park created in Windsor, in your opinion as representatives from Parks Canada?

October 28th, 2022 / 1 p.m.
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Darlene Upton Vice-President, Protected Areas Establishment and Conservation, Parks Canada Agency

Thank you and good day.

I'm pleased to be here today on behalf of Parks Canada. Let me begin by acknowledging that I'm on the unceded traditional territory of the Algonquin Anishinabe people and that the lands covered by Bill C-248 are in the traditional territories of the Anishinabe people of the Three Fires Confederacy, comprising the Ojibwa, the Odawa and the Potawatomi.

I want to affirm that Parks Canada shares the same goal as the bill, the creation of the Ojibway national urban park; however, I would like to be clear that the Parks Canada-led work is separate from the process being proposed under the private member's bill, Bill C-248, and that Parks Canada's input was not sought in the development of the bill, so there are some practical difficulties for Parks Canada that will be difficult to resolve.

I want to begin by sharing a few key facts. The bill seeks to create a national urban bank by amending the Canada National Parks Act, which is legislation that was never intended for that purpose. Unique legislation was created for the Rouge National Urban Park in Toronto for this very reason.

The study area under discussion in the Parks Canada-led process is considerably larger than the boundaries outlined in this bill, and that is yet to be reconciled. If the bill is passed, on day one, we will have no choice but to enforce the Canada National Parks Act. As such, any provincial or city infrastructure in the park will immediately become subject to our regulations. This will include everything from sewer lines to roadway allowances, which will create jurisdictional, liability and legal issues that would normally be worked out through the Parks Canada-led work currently under way, which this legislation does not take into account in its current form.

Parks Canada is creating new national urban parks across the country, and in fact has been exploring the potential of an urban park in Windsor since the spring of 2021, before this bill was tabled in the House. The proposed park is found in the traditional territory of both Caldwell and Walpole Island first nations. Walpole Island first nation is not represented by Caldwell First Nation, to the best of our knowledge, and has not been engaged in the development of the bill, to our knowledge.

The duty to consult is a constitutional requirement and needs to begin before decisions are made. Parks Canada engaged both first nations at the beginning of our work, and our process includes both nations at the partnership table. We recognize and respect the rights of indigenous peoples and are committed to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, including free, prior and informed consent.

This bill will essentially create an instant park by shortcutting around some important steps, leaving details to be worked out after the fact. It assumes a particular governance model by automatically transferring the administration, management and control of the park to the federal government. Under our national urban park program, we have the flexibility to consider partnership-based models, but the bill will not allow for that possibility in Windsor.

The private member's bill is a new and unknown territory. No national park or national urban park today has been created this way. Under normal processes, land transfers would be negotiated in advance. Complete and meaningful consultations would occur with indigenous peoples, stakeholders and the public, and the funding to operate the park would be secured. In the case of Windsor, none of those steps have been completed yet, and they are ongoing in our process.

This means that the path to implementing the bill is uncertain and that many important questions remain unanswered. For example, who would be responsible for existing liabilities on lands? Who would be responsible for maintaining public infrastructure in the park? These questions are not dealt with through a management plan. They relate to the rights and legal obligations that, if not respected, can result in significant liability to the government.

Parks Canada is committed to creating a national urban park in Windsor, and we're making rapid and significant progress, already working closely with other jurisdictions and indigenous partners. Through our process, we will work with partners to add value to the existing parks and natural areas in Windsor, building on Parks Canada's successful record of accomplishment in creating parks from coast to coast to coast that Canadians hold dear.

Thank you very much.

October 28th, 2022 / 1 p.m.
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The Chair Liberal Francis Scarpaleggia

I call this meeting to order. This is meeting number 33 of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development.

I would like to welcome Mr. Bob Benzen, Mr. Brian Masse and Ms. Emmanuella Lambropoulos, who are substituting for, respectively, Robert Kitchen, Laurel Collins and Terry Duguid.

Today we are hearing witnesses on Mr. Masse's bill, Bill C-248, to create an Ojibway national urban park in Canada.

We don't do sound tests with the committee members who are on Zoom, so I'm going to assume that everyone has a headset that is up to the standard set by the House of Commons.

As for the witnesses, our witnesses for the first hour are here, so they are not wearing headsets. We will do the tests for the witnesses coming on for the second hour.

We have with us, from Parks Canada, Mr. Andrew Campbell, senior vice-president for operations, and Darlene Upton, vice-president for protected area establishment and conservation.

You have, in total, five minutes. I don't know whether you'll be splitting your time or not, but we'll do five minutes and then go into a couple of rounds of questions.

If it is Ms. Upton who is speaking, go ahead, please.

October 21st, 2022 / 2:05 p.m.
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Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Thank you very much for having me, Mr. Chair. Maybe you can just signal me when I get to one minute, and I'll scoot on through and do that. I want to make sure I respect the committee's time here.

I'm really pleased to be here and present Bill C-248. Members of this committee know that it was in the House of Commons and it passed first reading. I want to thank the authors of the bill, being the Library of Parliament, who helped work on it. It's a privilege to bring this legislation forward, and to be the one doing so. This has been a big environmental movement in the Windsor area and southern Ontario for a long time. We have been endeavouring to protect lands in this area for almost half a century, in particular because of our industrialization and the fact that we also have a lot of agriculture, so our natural areas have been taxed.

I want to say thanks to a number of groups, essential partners. I recognize Chief Duckworth of Caldwell First Nation; the mayor and city council of Windsor; Wildlands League; the Unifor environment committee; Wildlife Preservation Canada; Citizens Environment Alliance; Essex County Field Naturalists' Club; Green Ummah; Friends of Ojibway Prairie; Save Ojibway organizations; and all the local residents over the years who have sent in thousands of petitions, letters and so forth. It's been really special.

The proposed Ojibway national urban park here in Windsor, Ontario, is part of the traditional territory of the Three Fires Confederacy of first nations and includes the Ojibway, Odawa, and Potawatomi, with long-respecting relationships of first nations. In fact, it's the oldest European settlement. Next to it is west of Montreal, with over 300 years of francophone settlement as well. It's where the War of 1812 was fought. It's where the Underground Railroad was. It is also where the rum-runners were. There has been a lot of heritage and tradition going on in this corridor.

The proposed urban park that we have here is part of a tall grass prairie. There's only 1% left in all of Canada, and this area is very special, because it's been preserved almost by accident. There have been a number of different community organization groups that have been trying to protect this land over a number of years, and it's come about, really, because the City of Windsor has been a very good steward—as well, the Province of Ontario. There have been some federal lands—I'm going to get into that later—that are now part of a change that could be good not only for 200 of Canada's 500 endangered species that are right down there, but also for ecotourism. Right next to it, we're building the Gordie Howe bridge, Canada's largest infrastructure project that goes into the United States.

Ojibway Shores, on the waterfront there, is 33 acres. It is the last undeveloped spot along the Detroit River in the City of Windsor and in the area, and maybe in the Great Lakes. It actually has a complex of a number of different tall grass prairie species and a number of different species at risk. They connect into several of the properties that the City of Windsor actually owns, and the Province of Ontario. Ojibway Shores itself is actually owned by the port authority.

Since the introduction of this bill, I, as well as others in the community, have been trying to save this land from development. It is now actually on a memorandum of understanding with Parks Canada and Environment Canada to protect it. It's crucial, because at one point the port authority wanted to bulldoze this area down and develop it, using it basically for landfill from the Herb Gray Parkway project. That's now protected. When it was inventoried by the field naturalists, it actually ranked high as some of the most valuable property for the ecosystem in Ontario.

There are several areas that I'm going to touch on briefly that connect into this. There's Spring Garden Natural Area, which is the City of Windsor. I was on city council when we protected that. It has everything from the Dukes' skipper to the red-headed woodpecker, the gray fox, all kinds of different American chestnut trees—a whole series of ecosystems there. Because we're actually a Carolinian area, and off the water, it creates this ecosystem diversity and a hot spot for species.

There's also the Black Oak Heritage Park, which is next to Ojibway Shores. So, Ojibway Shores is right on the waterfront, and then Black Oak Heritage Park, a City of Windsor property, is right next to it. We have the port property right next to the city property, but there's no management system there that's for both together. They have savannah and woodland species, and some of the best chestnut groves that are left in Ontario.

Next to that is the Tallgrass Prairie Heritage Park, where there are a number of different things—the red-bellied snake, Butler's gartersnake, the eastern foxsnake, and common park reptiles. In 1977, they found a species that they thought was extinct in Canada that was actually still there. That connects to it as well. Then we have Ojibway Park, which is next to it and has an excellent nature centre.

I think you're getting a theme here. We have these little plots of land that are owned by different people and different groups. This actually has a nature centre, walking trails, a beautiful ecosystem. It's also had some private areas given to it from the former raceway with Ojibway Tom Joy Woods. Next to that, we have the Ojibway Prairie Provincial Nature Reserve. There are more rare plants per hectare than anywhere else in Ontario. That's really cool in itself, if you ask me, in terms of what we have around us there.

What's really special, however, and why I think this is different from the other urban parks that are being considered, is that right across the river, in the United States, is the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge, which is the only one that they have over there. Across in the United States, if you saw the area.... You'd see that on the Canadian side we have the bringer bridge being built, and then we have a swath of green, patchy territory that needs to be connected and managed. On the U.S. side, if you're fan of The Lord of the Rings, Zug Island looks like Mordor. It's not very attractive, but there's also another community that's getting revitalization, called Delray. This is exciting because Delray is like Sandwich Town, which I represent and which is one of the poorest places in Canada with child poverty.

Again, I mentioned the rich tradition that it has had in the past, with the War of 1812, the rum-runners, the Underground Railway and all of those things. Right now, however, it has some of the highest child poverty and some of the biggest challenges with the environment because it's pinned down in this border area, with the Ambassador Bridge on one side, a railroad track on the other, and the Detroit River on the other. It's an exciting renewal opportunity that we're pleased about.

On the Detroit side, they are putting a lot of money into the Humbug Marsh and a whole bunch of ecosystems. What this means is that this property is a conduit for keeping things together and for species to migrate and move.

About 12 years ago, local residents fought to keep Ojibway Shores from being bulldozed. There's a long story behind that. I won't get into that. Next to it, again, the Gordie Howe bridge is being built. That's actually going to come online in a couple of years. That's exciting. That's been a real fight. That's actually an example of doing things right.

When I first got here, nobody wanted to build another bridge. It was seen as excessive. It was seen as not needed. We're doing it right. It's a fantastic project that was actually started by Jean Chrétien with the original “Let's Get Windsor-Essex Moving” fund for $200 million. Then, later on, it was actually finalized with Stephen Harper's government. They did a terrific job of making sure it was done correctly, because there were a lot of private interests against this. Now it's unified—everybody. It's a huge win for our environment and our economy. That's right next to it.

What happened in 2017 is that, after we stopped the destruction of Ojibway Shores, the port authority changed their mind and let people on board onto the site. There are 10 criteria of Ojibway Shores to find out whether it's environmentally significant. One is good enough. They had nine out of 10. I won't list them all because we don't have time, but it got nine out of 10 because of the way the ecosystem is and because of our Carolinian background.

I've been on about this for a long time. We had a town hall in 2019 where I invited not only the residents but also Caldwell First Nation and the Wildlands League. A number of different American state and federal officials also came. We've had a really good, positive input with that.

We followed it up with another town hall meeting just recently as well. In fact, even when the Prime Minister was down in Windsor in 2020, he said to the union leaders at that time that he supported a national urban park down there, so that was good.

In 2021, I introduced Bill C-248 because there had been some discussion of some new urban parks that might come online. What we wanted was simply what's been done for every other national park to date. It has its own legislation, just like a bridge or a border crossing. That's what we're doing. We're amending the schedule in the parks act to add this area.

I only have one minute left to wrap up. I would rather have interactions with everyone. One of the good news things that happened is that introducing the bill has actually triggered the memorandum of understanding for the Ojibway Shores to be protected from the port authority. The people at Parks Canada were opposed to co-management with Caldwell First Nation at first. To their credit, they have now changed positions on co-management, which is becoming the norm with first nations. It's important.

I'll finish with one of the most wonderful things we've seen happen out of this entire endeavour—a brief history as I wrap up. Caldwell First Nation was originally supposed to get Point Pelee after the War of 1812. They were burned out of their properties, and they were then shunted around for a number of years. They finally reached a settlement. It's the first new modern settlement that's actually taken place. They view this as reconciliation and are full-time partners in this. It's a wonderful story in terms of that. Chief Mary Duckworth has been excellent with this. Hopefully you will hear from her later.

I want to say thank you to the committee members for considering this, and I'm looking forward to the questions.

September 22nd, 2022 / 4:35 p.m.
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Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

I'm looking for consistency here, and here's the reason. I have a private member's bill, too, Bill C-248, that you voted against. It's been accused by the government side, by some members—not all—of being top-down.

I have, as converse to yours, the City of Windsor's actual explicit endorsement for the bill, including the mayor and all of council unanimously. It's the same with the Town of LaSalle. I have not only just the first nations that are supporting it explicitly. Caldwell First Nation historically used this bill, and my bill, as part of their actual reconciliation process. I also have the Province of Ontario that just passed a motion in the legislature in their first weeks of the House sitting in favour of what's taking place. I have thousands of petitioners. I have almost 10 years in the making of the entire idea for the national urban park. I have Unifor onside, the Windsor and District Labour Council, and I also have the Wildlands League, NGOs, all universally in support of it. The only opposition comes from you and government members.

I want you to reflect on that, and if you're open I want to find out—what do you think is top-down? It appears that your bill here is a little more top-down than my bill, which actually comes from the community.

June 9th, 2022 / 7:20 p.m.
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Terry Duguid Liberal Winnipeg South, MB

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

I want to thank the Parks Canada officials for being with us tonight, and of course for the great work they do, week-in, week-out and month-in, month-out. Canadians are very proud of our national parks system.

There's a lot of excitement around urban national parks, with Rouge being the first, of course. I'm just wondering where we are in the process of meeting that target of 10 new urban parks over five years. Are we on track? I'm particularly interested in Winnipeg and where we are in the process there. As you know, as a result of today's vote, Bill C-248 is coming our way. I wonder if you would have a short comment on the consultations on the urban park proposed for Windsor. My understanding is that consultations have been going on for two years. This is not a new thing that just came about today. Maybe comment on the importance of carrying on those consultations in the right way, so that we all get the result we want.

Ojibway National Urban ParkStatements by Members

June 9th, 2022 / 2:10 p.m.
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Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, in the face of continued misinformation from the Prime Minister's Office, yesterday's passage of Bill C-248 establishing Ojibway National Park was a victory for Caldwell First Nation, the City of Windsor, Essex County and the environment. New Democrats, Conservatives, the Bloc Québécois, the Green Party and two courageous Liberal MPs voted to establish this historic park.

I want to thank Chief Mary Duckworth and all of Caldwell First Nation for years of advocacy, Mayor Dilkens and all of the city council, Janet and Dave of Wildlands League, the Unifor Environment Committee, Friends of the Rouge, Friends of Ojibway Park, Essex County Field Naturalists' Club, ERCA, thousands of resident schools and businesses, Wildlife Preservation Canada, Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge, Green Ummah, the Audubon Society and Save Ojibway.

These remarkable organizations and people came together and worked hand in hand to make this park a reality. We now invite members who did not vote for this park to work with us on the next steps.