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All-party anti-human trafficking campaign, Uyghur human rights crisis on Hill agenda

The Peace Tower on Parliament Hill is framed in the mouth of a grizzly bear statue on Sparks street in Ottawa on Wednesday, October 25, 2017. iPolitics/Matthew Usherwood

By Kady O’Malley. Published on Apr 4, 2019

As the House heads into the final day of the budget debate, it appears that Conservative finance critic Pierre Poilievre may end up being the only MP to put his thoughts on the government’s fiscal fortitude on the permanent parliamentary record.

At press time, he’s scheduled to resume his speech this morning, and unless he chooses to wrap it up before time runs out on government orders later today, not a single member of the New Democrats — nor, for that matter, any of his caucus colleagues — will get the chance to contribute to the discussion.

Also on the Commons to-do list today: The final round of debate on Conservative MP David Van Kesteren’s bid to recognize Dutch Heritage Day, which seems virtually certain to be adopted when it goes to a vote next week.

Meanwhile, the Senate will host its first-ever assembly of the Daughters of the Vote, whose 338 delegates are set to fill the Red Chamber this morning.

ON & AROUND THE HILL

Conservative MP Arnold Viersen and other members of the All-Party Parliamentary Group to End Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking hit the National Press Theatre to “highlight the accomplishments of the inaugural year and announce the launch of legislation to prevent forced labour in supply chain.”

Also on the precinct media circuit:

Representatives from the World Uyghur Congress brief reporters on Canada’s response to the “mass arbitrary detention of Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims in China,” and offer recommendations on how the government could go further in its efforts, including calling on China to agree to an independent United Nations fact-finding mission to the region “to investigate abuses,” and “develop a coordinated response with likeminded states.”

The Parliamentary Budget Office releases two new reports that examine the estimated cost of expanding the current employment insurance sickness benefits from 15 weeks to 50 weeks, as well as the potential cost of reducing the necessary eligibility threshold from 600 to 360 hours of insurable employment, both of which will be posted to the parliamentary website this morning.

Later this evening, the NATO Association of Canada teams up with the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association to host a reception to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the North Atlantic Treaty, which will, as per the advisory, include speeches by Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, Sen. Joseph Day and NATO Association president Robert Baines, although it also notes that “no media scrumming is currently planned.”

All-party anti-human trafficking campaign, Uyghur human rights crisis on Hill agenda

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