HANSARD: Petition calling on government to take immediate action to address the humanitarian crisis faced by refugees from Gaza

Debates of June 13th, 2024
House of Commons Hansard #331 of the 44th Parliament, 1st Session
Immigration, Refugees and CitizenshipPetitionsRoutine Proceedings


Jenny Kwan Vancouver East, BC

Madam Speaker, I have the honour to present a petition signed by over a thousand people across the country. They are calling on the government to take immediate action to address the humanitarian crisis faced by refugees from Gaza by treating them equitably and increasing refugee admissions to Canada.

They call on the government to, one, accept applications from within and from outside Gaza, including from refugees who have made it to neighbouring countries; two, extend the same rights and protections to refugees from Gaza as it does to refugees from other conflict-affected regions, which would include providing access to asylum procedures, legal representation, health care and social services to ensure their safety and well-being; and, three, significantly increase the number of refugees admitted from Gaza to at least 10,000 individuals. This increase would be necessary to address the scale of the crisis and to provide for refugees in urgent need of protection and assistance. Finally, they call on the government to allow families in Canada to sponsor their relatives who are impacted by the conflict in Gaza through an expedited process. This would reunite families that have been torn apart by war and provide them with the support and care they need to rebuild their lives in safety.



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HANSARD: Foreign Interference and Alleged Reputational Harm to Members of Parliament

Outside this chamber, just yesterday, there were individuals shouting, questioning and jeering about who the traitors may be. Members of Parliament had to walk past these individuals on the members' way to the House to do their work. I believe we must find a way to disclose which MPs are knowingly, intentionally, wittingly or semi-wittingly engaging with foreign states or their proxies to undermine Canada's democratic processes and institutions. I believe this can be done in a way that does not compromise national security.

If there are no consequences for MPs who knowingly help foreign governments act against Canadian interests, we will continue to be an easy target. This will further erode the trust and faith Canadians have in our democratic processes. If allowed to continue, it will further impugn the integrity of the House. Revealing any member of Parliament, former or present, who is a willing participant in foreign interference activities would have the effect of deterring this kind of behaviour. Moreover, it would send a clear message to those foreign states that this cannot continue and that they will not be able to continue to use parliamentarians in this way. This will further reassure the public of the integrity of the House.

I strongly believe that the House should refer the matter to the procedure and House affairs committee. A possible way to deal with the issue would be for committee members to undergo the necessary security screening to examine the unredacted report and look into the allegations about parliamentarians who were “‘witting or semi-witting’ participants in the efforts of foreign states to interfere in our politics.” We could allow the named parliamentarians to be informed and to come before the committee as witnesses; we could then explore options on how to disclose the named parliamentarians without compromising national security or police investigations of the matter.

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