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Evidence of meeting #12 for Justice and Human Rights in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was debate.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

1 p.m.

Conservative

Brian Jean Conservative Fort McMurray—Athabasca, AB

Relevance, Mr. Chair.

1 p.m.

Liberal

Sean Casey Liberal Charlottetown, PE

Fair enough. I'm new here. I'm doing my best.

1 p.m.

Conservative

Brian Jean Conservative Fort McMurray—Athabasca, AB

You're doing a good job.

1 p.m.

Liberal

Sean Casey Liberal Charlottetown, PE

Thank you, Mr. Jean. Thank you, Mr. Chair, for bringing me back on topic.

It strikes me that members of the governing party have been pounding the law and order drum, certainly during the campaign, and in fairness for many, many years.

I want you to consider this. Now, this is one of the ten criticisms levelled by the Canadian Bar Association.

1 p.m.

Conservative

Brian Jean Conservative Fort McMurray—Athabasca, AB

Mr. Chair, I'm sorry, I meant relevance to the motion. We're on the motion that is before the committee and they haven't talked about the motion. We're not on the bill. We're not on clause 10 and we're not on the CBA. The motion is to time limit debate and to get it done today, so that we're done in about 15 hours—I guess about 13 now because two or three have been taken up with the filibuster by the NDP and the Liberals.

1 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Conservative Dave MacKenzie

I would ask you to stay on the motion itself, Mr. Casey.

1 p.m.

Liberal

Sean Casey Liberal Charlottetown, PE

Yes.

I believe what I was trying to say was directly relevant to the motion.

Here's what the Canadian Bar Association has to say about the tactics that are being employed—

1 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Conservative Dave MacKenzie

Just one second. One of the problems with the motion being distributed is it's only in one language. It is being translated and will be distributed.

Go ahead.

1 p.m.

Liberal

Sean Casey Liberal Charlottetown, PE

As I indicated, the Canadian Bar Association has ten reasons to oppose Bill C-10, but the one that's directly relevant to this motion and the one that I wanted to share with you is entitled “Rush job”:

Instead of receiving a thorough review, Bill C-10 is being rushed through Parliament purely to meet the “100-day passage” promise from the last election. Expert witnesses attempting to comment on over 150 pages of legislation in committee hearings are cut off mid-sentence after just five minutes.

That's the organization that represents 37,000 lawyers in this country and that's one of their ten critiques of how this legislation is being handled. I feel that's absolutely directly relevant to the motion.

Another of their critiques that I feel is directly relevant to the motion is item number four. This is number four of the ten reasons to oppose Bill C-10, from the Canadian Bar Association. The title of this reason to oppose is “No proper inspection”. The Canadian Bar Association states in this document:

Contrary to government claims, some parts of Bill C-10 have received no previous study by parliamentary committee. Other sections have been studied before and were changed—but, in Bill C-10, they’re back in their original form.

Not my words; this is the voice of the Canadian Bar Association, the voice of lawyers in this country, the voice of the people who, as their stock in trade, interpret statutes and apply them to everyday situations every day in this country. The Canadian Bar Association has very serious concerns about a rush job and about no proper inspection. Shouldn't we?

Colleagues, I believe we are doing a disservice to the Canadian electorate, to our responsibility as parliamentarians, to the members of the bar in this country, some of our former colleagues, by the tack we've taken.

Mr. Chairman, I'm going to wrap up there. I thank you for your patience and for the opportunity to address the committee on this matter.

1:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Conservative Dave MacKenzie

Thank you, Mr. Casey.

Ms. Borg.

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Don't worry, I will stick to the motion. However, I'm going to concentrate on the fact that the motion limits debate, the exchange of opinions and any changes that might be made to this bill.

I have in my hands some 20 or 30 scholarly articles. They are written by all the people who are opposed to the provisions that will be implemented.

1:05 p.m.

Conservative

Brian Jean Conservative Fort McMurray—Athabasca, AB

I have a point of clarification.

I heard from the witness, and I'm not sure if it's a problem with translation or not, that she's going to speak in favour of the motion? Is that--

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

No. I said I would talk about the motion.

1:05 p.m.

Conservative

Brian Jean Conservative Fort McMurray—Athabasca, AB

Thank you.

I'm sorry. I heard the same translation.

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

I'm talking about the motion.

Okay, just so we're clear here.

1:05 p.m.

A voice

Come on over!

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

No, thank you.

As I was saying, I have in my hands some 30 scholarly articles written by experts in criminology and sociology who are opposed to the provisions that this bill is designed to implement. I think it's interesting because all these articles are opposed to minimum punishments. I am certain that, if all these people were here with us, today...

1:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Conservative Dave MacKenzie

Ms. Borg, to the motion. That's to the bill.

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

I'm talking about the motion, Mr. Chairman.

November 17th, 2011 / 1:05 p.m.

Conservative

Merv Tweed Conservative Brandon—Souris, MB

Well, watch it.

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

If these people were here today, they would say that it's important to suggest some amendments. I am talking about the importance of suggesting amendments to this bill. As it now stands, this bill proposes provisions to which the majority of people are opposed.

1:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Conservative Dave MacKenzie

That's still about amending the bill. What we're talking about is the motion.

1:05 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg NDP Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

Yes, but the motion, in its essence, is trying to limit the amount of amendments. Am I wrong?

1:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

No.

1:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Conservative Dave MacKenzie

No.