Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his government is working to deal with the “appalling” overrepresentation of Indigenous women in federal prisons as part of justice reform.
Globe and Mail reporter Patrick White has reported on the situation in recent stories here and here.
Mr. Trudeau was asked about the matter Tuesday while in St. John’s at the beginning of a visit by Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall.
He told a news conference that his government has made significant investments in reconciliation that have had an impact, but there is much more to do.
“Recent reports have just been appalling in seeing the overrepresentation, particularly of Indigenous women in our criminal system,” Mr. Trudeau said.
He said that’s one of the reasons the government has moved forward on such files as eliminating mandatory minimums, which he noted lead to an overrepresentation of marginalized and vulnerable people in the criminal system.
“This is one thing we’re doing but we know there is much more to do and we will because tackling systemic injustice, systemic discrimination which is real is long hard work that we are committed to.”
On another note, Mr. Trudeau says it was not “a very good idea” for Soccer Canada to invite the Iranian men’s soccer team to Canada for a friendly soccer game given the Canadians who died on Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 when it was shot down on in 2020 after taking off from Tehran, by an Iranian surface-to-air missile. Story here.
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KENNEY IN WASHINGTON FOR SENATE COMMITTEE HEARING – Alberta Premier Jason Kenney appeared Tuesday before a U.S. Senate committee on energy and natural resources in Washington and to make a pitch: Help get another pipeline built to further fortify North American energy security. He was there on the same day that federal Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson was to make a virtual appearance before the gathering. Story here.
GOOGLE ESCALATES ONLINE NEWS ACT OPPOSITION – Google is ramping up its opposition to the federal government’s Online News Act, warning the proposed new law would “break” its popular search engine. Story here.
ROYAL VISIT BEGINS – The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall are in Newfoundland and Labrador at the beginning of a three-day tour that will also include stops later this week in Ottawa and the Northwest Territories. Story here. There’s a Globe and Mail explainer here on the visit. Meanwhile, monarchists in Canada say they’re disappointed with what they call the federal government’s “lacklustre” plans to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, an event that honours the sovereign’s remarkable seven-decade reign. Story here from CBC.
CHINA-CANADA COMMITTEE RELAUNCHED – MPs have voted to re-establish a special committee on Canada-China relations. Story here from CTV.
PLANS FOR $789-MILLION MUSEUM IN B.C. CAUSE A STIR – British Columbia’s new Liberal Leader Kevin Falcon said that, if he becomes premier‚ he would halt plans by Premier John Horgan’s NDP government to build a new Royal B.C. Museum, expected to cost about $800-million, calling it a “billion-dollar vanity project.” Story here.
N.B. LIEUTENANT.-GOVERNOR SPEAKS OUT ON APPOINTMENT RULING – New Brunswick Lt.-Gov. Brenda Murphy has broken her silence on a recent Court of Queen’s Bench ruling that said her appointment to the role as a non-French speaker violated the Charter or Rights and Freedoms. Story here from CBC.
ONTARIO ELECTION – Ontario’s opposition leaders took aim at Doug Ford’s handling of the pandemic and his $10-billion proposed Highway 413, among other subjects, at the province’s televised debate Monday, with some of the tensest clashes over COVID-19 and climate change. Story here. Meanwhile, Queen’s Park reporter Dustin Cook reports here on five highlights from the debate.
CONSERVATIVE LEADERSHIP RACE
CAMPAIGN TRAIL – Scott Aitchison is in Vancouver where he released a foreign policy and national defence platform that includes Canada spending 2 per cent of its GDP on defence, per NATO’s benchmark. Patrick Brown is campaigning in the Okanagan region of British Columbia. From Montreal, Jean Charest released a “safer communities” platform that includes stronger sentences for crimes motivated by race, religion, sexual orientation, language, or other forms of hate. No events are listed for Tuesday on the websites of Roman Baber, Leslyn Lewis or Pierre Poilievre.
POILIEVRE ON `WHITE REPLACEMENT THEORY’ – Leadership contender Pierre Poilievre has denounced the “white replacement theory,” which was believed to be a motive for the May 14 mass shooting in Buffalo, N.Y., as “ugly and disgusting hate-mongering.” Story here. Meanwhile, former Newfoundland and Labrador Progressive Conservative leader Ches Crosbie is supporting Mr. Poilievre’s leadership bid. Story here from CBC.
THIS AND THAT
TODAY IN THE COMMONS – Projected Order of Business at the House of Commons, May.17, accessible here.
POLITICAL BOOK COMPETITION – The winner of the Shaughnessy Cohen Price for Political Writing will be handed out Tuesday night at the first in-person Politics and the Pen gala in Ottawa in two years. The prize, named for the late Windsor-area MP, Elizabeth Shaughnessy Cohen, honours a book of literary nonfiction on a political subject relevant to Canadian readers that can influence thinking on Canadian political life.
This year’s finalist books, and their authors, are:
China Unbound: A New World Disorder by Joanna Chiu.
Flora! A Woman in a Man’s World by Flora MacDonald and Geoffrey Stevens.
Indian in the Cabinet: Speaking Truth to Power by Jody Wilson-Raybould.
The Next Age of Uncertainty: How the World Can Adapt to a Riskier Future by Stephen Poloz
The Two Michaels: Innocent Canadian Captives and High Stakes Espionage in the US-China Cyber War by Mike Blanchfield and Fen Osler Hampson
Please watch the globeandmail.com for news of the winner.
SAJJAN IN BERLIN – International Development Minister Harjit Sajjan is travelling to Berlin to attend the G7 Development Ministers’ Meeting from Wednesday to Thursday. Topics on the agenda include the international response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing global food security crisis.
On Tuesday’s edition of The Globe and Mail podcast, Report on Business reporter and columnist Tim Kiladze explains why there is so much uncertainty as global markets falter, how inflation and interest rates are playing into it and why investors should prepare for more than a short-term market blip. The Decibel is here.
PRIME MINISTER’S DAY
In St. John’s, the Prime Minister held private meetings, and, with Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey visited a local child-care facility and held a media availability. The Prime Minister also attended the official welcome ceremony for the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.
Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-François Blanchet holds a news conference on the protection of the French language before attending Question Period.
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh was scheduled to hold a news conference about his party’s plan to deal with oil and gas prices, participate in Question Period, and speak, in the House of Commons, about what his party described as the NDP’s “plan to help Canadians.”
No schedule provided for other party leaders.
Alex Bozikovic (The Globe and Mail) on how diversity is the key idea of the winning design for Ottawa’s Block 2: “Architecture won a rare victory in Ottawa this week. On Monday, Public Services and Procurement Minister Filomena Tassi announced the results of an international design competition for so-called “Block 2,” a complex of two office buildings on Wellington Street that will serve Parliament. The winning design, led by David Chipperfield Architects (DCA) of London and Toronto’s Zeidler Architects, will have to work hard. With a structure of mass timber, it will provide committee rooms, support space and 150 offices for parliamentarians. But the project also promises to deliver the most interesting and thoughtful public architecture Canada has seen in a generation.”
Campbell Clark (The Globe and Mail) on how it’s time for potential political leaders to say which conspiracy theories they reject: “Last week, Conservative leadership candidates stood on a debate stage answering yes-or-no questions in a lightning round, before fielding a series of getting-to-know-you questions: What are you reading? What was the last TV show you binged? Which historical figure would you invite for dinner? But there’s a more critical getting-to-know you question anyone aspiring to lead a national party should answer right now: Which conspiracy theories do you reject? In 2022, Canadians need to know – and not just to know whether potential political leaders have gone down rabbit holes.”
John Doyle (The Globe and Mail) on how the cultural ignorance of the Conservative candidates is a revealing insult: “The Canadian film and television industry generates about $9.5-billion a year in production volume. It employs about 120,000 full-time and many more part-time or in connected roles. Those are people concerned about their jobs, mortgages and inflation. They also make phenomenally successful TV. Have these candidates not heard of Letterkenny, Kim’s Convenience, Schitt’s Creek, Alias Grace, Frontier, Transplant and a dozen more? Their taste is in their mouths and their ignorance an insult to a Canadian industry and Canadians.”
John Ibbitson (The Globe and Mail) on the two factors that could shake up the Ontario election now that the debates are finished: “And despite the rantings in much of the mainstream and social media, this Progressive Conservative government is anything but a hotbed of conservative ideology. It has invested, not only in roads, but in transit, education and health care. That only leaves Mr. Ford’s populist personality as an issue. But polls show that he is in fact the most popular of the three major party leaders. The PC Leader is not out of the woods yet – far from it. Polls also show that about half of all voters feel it’s time for a change of government in Ontario. But to these eyes, nothing happened in the debate to galvanize that discontent. All it did was make Mike Schreiner look real good.”
Hamed Esmaeilion (Contributed to The Globe and Mail) on how Canada’s World Cup friendly match against Iran is an insult to the victims of PS752: “I recognize that Canada Soccer is striving to increase the sport’s popularity in Canada, where it lags behind other activities such as hockey. Indeed, it has been wonderful to see the successes of Canada’s national women’s team growing that popularity and attracting a large youth following over the years. My daughter Reera was among the young Canadians inspired by the women’s team, and she joined the Richmond Hill youth club, playing left defence every week in her club’s practice sessions. But that was before Reera and her mother – my wife Parisa – were killed when the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), a ruthless and destructive military organization, shot down their passenger plane. The incident left them and 174 other passengers dead, many of whom were Canadian.”
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