First off, the ITQ Committee Ahead-Looker would like to extend an official apology to the Subcommittee on International Human Rights, which, just hours ago, was chided for its apparent inability to come up with a report on human rights in Cuba, only to come out swinging, with a study on Omar Khadr, the only Canadian citizen still cooling his heels in U.S .custody, down Guatanemo Bay way. On Tuesday afternoon, the committee will hear from Khadr’s military issue defence lawyer, William C. Kuebler, which strikes us as an excellent start to what will surely be a fascinating investigation into the curious case of the Khadrs.
As long as we’re handing out mea culpas, ITQ would also like to soften our gentle mocking of Status of Women – which, in our defence, did seem at the time to be trapped in an endless loop of hearings on “gender budgets”. Apparently, the committee actually was going somewhere with that, because tomorrow afternoon, its members will call on Canadian Heritage Minister Josee Verner to defend the latest round of budget cuts to Status of Women Canada.
ITQ predicts that Verner will be facing a far tougher crowd than fellow cabinet minister, Monte Solberg, also on the main estimates circuit tomorrow, who appears before Human Resources, Skills Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities.
And finally, it will be a red-letter day over at the Ethics committee, where the long-awaited study on Canada’s privacy laws finally gets underway with a visit from the Privacy Commissioner herself, Jennifer Stoddart.
- The meat lobby – well, the chicken-and-beef lobby; no sign of emissaries from the pork, fish or lamb sectors – is back before Agriculture and Agri-food, which continues its work on “Product of Canada” claims
- As a special treat, officials from Passports Canada will get to avoid complaints about the chronic delays in processing applications for once, and instead, will provide the members of Government Operations and Estimates with their collective perspective on the geographic distribution and turnover rate within the public service.
- Over at Official Languages, it’s all about the linguistic duality, baby – at the Vancouver Olympics, to be specific
- Transport, Infrastructure and Communities manages to hit the trifecta in its ongoing study into the navigational protection of our national waterways, thanks to this afternoon’s appearance by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
- Still more on the post-market surveillance of pharmaceutical products, which I’m starting to think must be a lot more interesting than it sounds, because there seems to be no end of enthusiasm within the Health committee to carry on with its investigation thereof
- Canada’s treatment of its veterans goes up against programs offered by “members of the Commonwealth and the G8” at Veterans Affairs
We’re doomed – doomed, I tell you! Run for your lives! Gold bullion – that’s your growth industry! Those are just a few of the things that Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney won’t be saying when he gives his regular report on monetary policy to the Finance committee on Wednesday afternoon.
Meanwhile, over at C-20 – that’s the legislative committee studying Harper’s proposal for sort-of kind-of-ish-with-an-asterisk Senate elections, in case you’d forgotten – Ottawa U constitutional law professor (and part-time Afghan detainee policy troublemaker) Errol Mendes will be joined by several other law-talkers to, well, talk law.
Still on the Canada-Columbian free trade beat, International Trade hears from cattlemen, and sugar beet producers, and then from Amnesty International and the Canadian Council for International Cooperation, about how environment and human rights concerns can have an impact on trade negotiations
A delegation from the German-Canadian Parliamentary Friendship Group drops by the Hill for a brief meet ‘n’ greet with the Citizenship and Immigration committee (no, I’m not sure why that committee, and not, say, Foreign Affairs), which will then pick up its study of Iraqi refugees, with the assistance of the Canadian rep for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
Finally, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development continues with clause by clause c
onsideration of C-30, which would set up the Specific Claims Tribunal that the government is convinced will do wonders to reduce the backlog on land claims.