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Stories by Samantha Wright Allen

‘Historic’ effort to run two hybrid Chambers a balancing act

'The reality is that we [had] limited capacity for the House of Commons and the support team in the Senate to go remotely with committees,' says Progressive Sen. Pierre Dalphond.
Inspections, national housing standards, and continuing a binational contact group are among key commitments Mexico would like from Canada, says its consular head in Ottawa.
Plus Canada names Nishika Jardine to the veterans watchdog post after 37 years in the military.
Mária Éva Vass-Salazar says her priorities in Ottawa include tightening political connections, trade, innovation, and co-operation through NATO.
As Senate leaders squabble over how to run committees, the delayed start stretches closer to Parliament’s one-year mark, and halts the work of one powerful committee which its chair says puts the Senate 'at risk.'
Brock University professor Matthew Hennigar says these new disclosures help answer the question: ‘what does our justice system cost as a public good?’
Two hundred thousand civil servants—or 70 per cent of the federal workforce—are working from home, says Jean-Yves Duclos, offering these figures for the first time.
New data shows only 5.7 per cent of prisoners spent four hours outside of their cell every day—in violation of the law brought in by the Liberals last Parliament.
'Our job is not to play procedural inside baseball around organization of the Senate, and we’ve done a lot of that, and I’m tired of it,' says Sen. Scott Tannas.
Plus, the Liberals are reportedly considering up to $20-billion in annual spending for new programs.
‘The more we can, the more we want to be open,’ says ISG Sen. Saint-Germain of move to make public details of the the Senate Internal Economy Committee's seven subgroups.
'This [program] should be a win-win-win situation, and it’s turned out to be a lose-lose-lose situation and it has to be rectified,' says Independent Sen. Ratna Omidvar.
Canada and Norway share common goals and can ‘back each other up’ on the global stage, says Jon Elvedal Fredriksen.
Plus, RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki resists Indigenous Services Minister Marc MIller’s assessment that the force 'let down' Mi'kmaw fishermen.
‘I think the way we are doing it is quite difficult but we have no choice,’ says French Ambassador Kareen Rispal, who thinks the pandemic has also created a ‘revival’ in the importance of missions.
Anahit Harutyunyan says new information proves Canadian drones are being used by Turkish-backed Azerbaijani fighters, justifying an ‘indefinite’ arms ban on Turkey.
Plus, Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller calls the raid on Indigenous fishery facilities by commercial industry supporters an “assault” on the Mi'kmaw people.
Plus, Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne continues his four-country European tour.
With each side accusing the other of playing ‘hostage’ with negotiations, ISG Senator Raymonde Saint-Germain says it would be ‘anarchy’ to let seats leave with Senators.
‘The appearance is terrible,’ says former Senate ethics officer Jean Fournier of the Red Chamber's long-awaited new oversight group, which gives Senators a final say on review of their expenses.
‘We can do it in small steps and make big impacts,’ says Senator Patricia Bovey of a plan to broaden the Indigenous works the Chamber highlights, and help with reconciliation.
'I think there’s a lot of healing to be done and if we approach it in this spirit of mutual respect, I think we can emerge from this difficult period a much stronger party,' says runner-up Dimitri Lascaris.
‘We’ve delayed for too long already’ on creating hybrid sittings in the Senate, says ISG facilitator Yuen Pau Woo.
Eamonn McKee, Ireland’s ambassador-designate to Canada, was one of the negotiators who helped bring about the Good Friday Agreement to end conflict in Northern Ireland.
The powerful Internal Economy Committee also agreed to move some procurement discussions from behind closed doors in a bid to be more transparent about its contracts.
The Conservative, NDP, and Green Party critics all say the federal government has failed to act to address tensions.
Groups say they're pleased to see Ottawa picking up the pace, while the Ontario Native Women’s Association says its exclusion 'makes zero sense' and means some women will fall through the cracks in the conversation.
The Standing Orders have to be amended to allow MPs to vote remotely, and according to Bloc deputy House leader Christine Normandin, there’s agreement among parties for those changes to be made temporary.
Lobbyists will also be keeping an eye on progress on the government's backlog of big-ticket legislation and regulatory reforms this session.
Harold Johnson’s book Peace and Good Order is among five shortlisted for the Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing, to be announced later this month.
‘The trial transcript doesn't tell the whole story,’ says Kent Roach, who tried to fill the gaps apparent in the Gerald Stanley trial in his new book Canadian Justice, Indigenous Injustice.

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