Here are the three things you should not have missed:
- Deportation revelations in the VIA terror plot
- Nova Scotia cyberbullying legislation
- MPs debate assisted suicide
On Power & Politics, CBC’s Greg Weston showed documents from 2004 that showed that terror suspect Raed Jaser was before the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) on a deportation order. Jaser and his family had originally been ordered deported in Canada in 1998 because they had come into the country illegally, but over the next six years, won the right to stay in the country except for Jaser himself, who had racked up a number of criminal charges, but his deportation was delayed as he was a stateless Palestinian with nowhere to be deported. By 2012, Jaser was granted a pardon for his previous offences, and free to become a citizen.
When Evan Solomon then put this to an MP panel of Pierre Poilievre, Hélène Laverdière and Dominic LeBlanc, Poilievre said he couldn’t comment on that case, but touted the government’s legislation to clean up the immigration system. Laverdière said it was too early to prejudge this case, but when she mentioned that she has a PhD in sociology, the conversation sidetracked to Stephen Harper’s comments about “not committing sociology.” Leblanc pointed out that they also condemned the attacks and that Harper was obsessing with Trudeau and trying to take partisan advantage of tragic events, to which Poilievre, incredulously, declared that “the root cause of terrorism is terrorists.” Case closed, apparently.
Power Play spoke with Nova Scotia justice minister Ross Landry, who spoke about his province’s new legislation to combat cyberbullying in the wake of the suicide of Rehteah Parsons. Landry said that part of the aim is to form a group to investigate and follow up on complaints, and for there to be a liability for the parents of the children engaging in the cyberbullying so that there is accountability. While Landry pointed to the federal responsibility over the transmission of images, he said that their bill was not about making criminals of young people, but about helping to change behaviour. For a reality check, Don Martin spoke with Mike Preston of Supreme Advocacy, who said it was a laudable effort, but there are questions about jurisdiction as there is a provision for a $5000 fine and six months in prison. Preston also noted that the law is always trying to catch up with social changes and technology, but laws stemming from high profile cases can wind up with unforeseen consequences.
After Canadian Susan Griffiths delivered a final video plea to Canadian MPs before her assisted suicide in Switzerland, Evan Solomon hosted an MP panel of Shelly Glover, Françoise Boivin and Ralph Goodale to discuss the issue. Glover noted that the Commons had this debate in 2010 around a Private Members’ Bill, and that she feels the issue has been put to rest. She also noted that she has a daughter with brain cancer who was given 12 years, now in year seven, and it was essential for her to have hope. Boivin said they will have no choice but to reopen the debate given the Court decision in BC and the Quebec government moving ahead with changing their laws on the practice, and that just because Parliament debated something once, it doesn’t mean it can’t be debated again. Goodale said the discussion is already ongoing, and will end up at the Supreme Court, which will inevitably kick it back to Parliament. He added that all parties should work together to improve disabled and palliative care.
- Terry Audla, president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, said the EU seal hunt ruling removes the broader market for the Inuit to maintain their livelihoods, even if they were granted an exemption.