HANSARD: Jenny advocates for three petitions regarding Afghan immigration and the environment

House of Commons Debate
Routine Proceedings
April 8th, 2022 / 12:10 p.m.


Jenny Kwan (NDP) Vancouver East, BC

"Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions to table today.

The first petition has been initiated by Brenda Morrison, a human rights activist. She is calling for the government to take action with respect to the Afghan community. She notes that, for decades, after risking their lives to help the Canadian Armed Forces, many Afghan interpreters, other collaborators and their extended families were left in a highly precarious situation and were being targeted by the Taliban. With the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, many are desperate to get to safety but are unable to do so.

The petitioners are calling on the government to immediately undertake an emergency immigration measure that grants a temporary residence permit and temporary travel documents, while suspending the usual documentation requirements until people are safely here in Canada. That would apply to all Afghans and their extended families who served the military, those who are human rights activists and those with immediate family members here in Canada. They call to expand the stream to extended family members, as well. They are also calling for the government to open up spaces for sponsorship-agreement holders and to waive the refugee determination requirements."


Jenny Kwan (NDP) Vancouver East, BC

"Mr. Speaker, the second petition that I am tabling was initiated by my constituents, Marie Udaga and Nick Potrovitch.

The petitioners are calling on the government to enact a just transition legislation that reduces emissions by at least 60% below 2005 levels by 2030 and to make a significant contribution to emissions reductions in countries in the global south. They further note that there needs to be action on winding down the fossil fuel subsidy and related infrastructure, to end the fossil fuel industry and related infrastructure.

The petitioners are also calling for the transition to a decarbonized economy, the creation of new public economic institutions, and the expansion of public ownership of services and utilities across the economy to implement the transition. They note that creating good, green jobs and driving inclusive workforce development are key, and that we need to respect indigenous rights, sovereignty and knowledge by including them in creating and implementing this legislation.

Finally, the petitioners are calling for the government to expand the social safety net and to pay for the transition by increasing taxes on the wealthiest people and corporations, and financing them through a public national bank.

The third petition is the same as the second, and has been initiated by my constituent, Leah Anderson.

I hope the government will take action on these petitions."



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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.

Are you ready to take action?

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