Mr. Speaker, access to information is a cornerstone of democracy. The right to know ensures transparency and accountability in government and a healthy democracy. The government recoils at the level of accountability that transparency brings.
With Bill C-36 the government would weaken Canada's access to information laws in its zeal to provide us with anti-terrorism legislation. It would give the attorney general the power to issue certificates that would exclude information now allowed. It would prevent the information commissioner and the courts from reviewing unjustifiable government secrets.
There would be no meaningful independent review of these secrets. The government would not have to prove that disclosure would cause injury and there would be no end to this period of secrecy. We would no longer have the right to protect our property and loved ones through democratic transparency and accountability.
The government is gutting the access to information we now enjoy and taking away the freedom of information from Canadians.