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Why former spies and diplomats must have freedom to speak

By Phil Gurskii      

Trying to stifle the voices of experienced Canadians who are critical over what China is trying to do sounds a lot like what China does to its own citizens, does it not?

The Prime Minister's Office, pictured in Ottawa. There are a lot of Canadians who served our nation well and who have valuable contributions to make to help our citizenry understand complex realities. They must have the freedom to do so without government or civil service busybodies trying to narrow what they do, writes Phil Gurski. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

OTTAWA—When you agree to work for an organization that deals with classified information, you’re required to sign off on documents that say you will never disclose certain data to those who do not have the requisite security clearance and a “need to know.” This agreement is a basic requirement of joining up and there is no way around it.

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Ex-Liberal MPs running in next election eagerly await start of nomination process

News|By Abbas Rana
The Liberal Party is consulting MPs and grassroots members to determine rules for candidate nominations in held and unheld ridings for the next election, says spokesman Braeden Caley.

Opposition MPs decry lack of transparency around government’s COVID-19 advertising spending

News|By Mike Lapointe
Just over $48.5-million was added to the Privy Council Office’s budget for 'communications and marketing (COVID-19)' in the most recent round of supplementary estimates, which were passed by Parliament on June 17.

Too soon to say if StatsCan will bring in more racialized researchers, says official; ‘we’re just building those relationships’

News|By Palak Mangat
In July 2019, the agency established the Centre for Indigenous Statistics and Partnerships. It also employs 11 Indigenous liaison advisors to help it collect data on Indigenous people in Canada.

PSAC reaches tentative deal with feds on Phoenix damages, wage increases

News|By Mike Lapointe
Members will soon be invited to participate in online ratification votes when the final text and full details of the tentative agreement are made available, according to the union.

MPs back more modest option for Parliament visitors’ centre as Centre Block renos roll on

'I appreciate we’re not going for the Cadillac option. …  The larger option was much more expensive,' says NDP House Leader Peter Julian. 'We’re talking about over $110-million in savings.'

Canada ‘ill-prepared’ for potential coronavirus second wave, says Senate committee

News|By Beatrice Paez
The committee noted that the Public Health Agency of Canada has yet to revise or finalize its guidance for long-term care homes in light of concerns about its current relevance.

Cultural assessments needed for sentencing reform, say advocates, amid calls to address high Black incarceration rates

Justice advocates agree with the Black Parliamentary Caucus’ recent call for pre-sentencing reports, similar to the Gladue reports for Indigenous offenders, to be used for racialized Canadians.

Disaggregated data key to ensuring representative workplaces, say experts, as PMO skirts Black staff statistic

The PMO declined to provide a specific breakdown of self-identified Black staffers among cabinet offices when asked, but says it plans to circulate further voluntary surveys to better understand its staff ‘later this sum

Argentina, Chile, DRC, Hungary, and Madagascar say they backed Canada’s UN Security Council bid, but closest allies are silent

News|By Neil Moss
The United States, United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand were among 17 countries that wouldn't comment on whether they backed Canada's recent bid for a Security Council seat.
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