Madam Speaker, I always find it a little bit disorienting when a love-in emerges in the House of Commons.
I want to say that I am in support of this legislation. I think it is important that we try to allow debate to collapse today so that the bill can move forward to committee and we can begin the work of studying it at committee and proposing constructive amendments. Our party believes that stronger action is required to address the issue of supply chain slavery, the issue of it happening in the private sector and issues in government procurement.
The member quite ably spoke to the fact that many parties have spoken about this. I think it has also been acknowledged that this bill is not going to solve every problem. It is an important step. Let us work to pass the bill and strengthen it. Then let us also think about other things that may be required to move this work forward.
I have a couple of other points about the issue of supply chain slavery that I want to put on the record.
I think the points on the capacity of other countries and the need for strengthened international co-operation in combatting these issues are very important. We are one country. We are trying to do a similar thing that other like-minded countries are trying to do, which is address issues of forced labour. Why can we not collaborate more in identifying where the problems are and in sharing information to strengthen our enforcement?
I will mention as well that in the United States, the House has passed the uyghur forced labor prevention act, which designates the East Turkestan region as a place where we know there is a great deal of forced labour happening. It says that in the case of that region, there is a reverse onus: It is presumed that slave labour is involved unless proven otherwise, because there is such a significant problem in that place. I would support that kind of measure and/or a mechanism of regional designation allowing a government of the day to say that a particular country or region is a place where there is a huge problem, so we need to treat products coming out of this region in a different way. That is not in the bill, but I think the process of regional designation is something we should explore as a Parliament.
One of the proposals put forward by the business community in this area is for the government to create an entities list to identify suppliers that are known to be problematic. I think that would be very helpful. Some small businesses would fall below the threshold in this legislation, and there are obviously challenges in trying to identify where the problems are in supply chains. If the government could work on an entities list to support the work that is required, that would be helpful as well.
In general, I look forward to the discussion at committee. This is important legislation. I think it moves the ball forward, and we need to continue the conversation to do all we can to advance justice and human rights. I look forward to working with colleagues and all parties to try to do that.