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House officers in ‘preliminary discussions’ on Parliament’s return, contingency plans, says NDP whip

Opposition parties need enough lead time to pore over the legislation, to avoid a repeat of the late-night sitting that occurred when they were 'surprised' to learn that the government was seeking unlimited spending powers until December 2021, says Rachel Blaney.
The expected recall of Parliament will give Senators another chance to strike a committee to monitor the government’s crisis response.
We’ll need to count the lives lost in the short term directly related to the pandemic, of course. But we’ll also need to consider deaths over the long term, as a consequence of fighting the pandemic. 
The government said it is committed to ‘maintaining a focused, safe and reliable air transport network for these communities.’
Opinion|Stan Kutcher
History has taught us that ignoring our fear or focusing primarily on our negative feelings, can lead to denying the urgency to act, and even to avoiding taking the essential actions to overcome the threat we are facing.
Coronavirus Live Data
Courtesy of Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
Coronavirus News
Crises create governance distortions that affect the allocation of resources, the setting of priorities, and the interpretation of laws that restrict or guide the behaviour of citizens.
Hunkering down amid a global pandemic whose containability depends on your latitude, longitude, and head of government requires mad adaptation skills.
Marie Curie once said, ‘Nothing in life is to be feared: it is only to be understood.’ In order to protect the most vulnerable, the public needs to know who will get sick.
Opinion|Tim Powers
Hopefully, the pause in the campaign will allow the candidates to come back with a focused pitch, not to just to Conservatives, but to Canadians in the tough new world we find ourselves in.
Our challenge is clear: find a way to pump a lot of money into the Canadian media sector, while avoiding the ethical problems inherent to government picking and choosing which media outlets get saved.
Opinion|Scott Taylor
A premature, public relations optics-only deployment of the CAF is not going to help fix this broken egg called COVID-19.
Conservative MP Stephanie Kusie says she doesn’t think such a reconsideration is warranted yet, but could be if COVID-19 keeps Parliament away into the fall.
There's speculation over how the U.S. election will be handled in the age of the pandemic. The prevailing view is that the president would not be able legally to postpone the vote, although, with Trump, who knows?
Opinion|Joseph Ingram
If this crisis is to produce a positive turning point and not an apocalypse, governments must quickly reverse course.
If the government is to inspire the confidence in Canadians that will be required to successfully navigate this challenging period as a nation, timely decision-making and the proper documentation of both the decisions and any resulting actions must go hand in hand.
The number of lobbying files connected to COVID-19 has exploded in the last week, with 90 registrations for 55 organizations outlining plans to push federal officials on issues ranging from policy to funding.
Feature|Neil Moss
Plus, the Jaimie Anderson Parliamentary Internship Program has been put on pause due to COVID-19, and some Conservative MPs are vowing to donate their annual pay hike.
'This subsidy will make a real difference in your lives and help everyone affected bridge to better times,' said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday, March 27.
NDP MP Don Davies says the situation calls for an ‘extraordinary response’ and supports for mental health, which one advocate says should come ‘imminently.’
'We need a sustainable and stable supply of these products, and that means making them at home, and we’re optimistic that they will be available in the coming weeks,' says Prime Minister Trudeau.
Opinion|Gwynne Dyer
Achieving herd immunity requires 60 per cent-70 per cent of the population to have had the disease—and with this particular coronavirus, about one or two percent of those people will die.
It’s still unclear how much the support will ultimately cost, and how many businesses and organizations will apply and receive such assistance, though Prime Minister Trudeau acknowledged that the 'costs keep climbing.'
‘In normal times, most Canadians would respond to the collection and use of sensitive health and location information with a hard no. But these are not normal times,’ says professor Michael Geist.
‘It is going to blow a hole in the government’s legislative agenda,’ says Liberal MP John McKay.
The COVID-19 pandemic is the 'defining moment of Justin Trudeau's prime ministership' and this is a crisis where the government has a central role to play in its management. 'So this is a bit of a political slow burn,' says Nik Nanos.
The Senate’s inability to supervise the government’s unprecedented crisis spending is an ‘institutional failing,’ says the leader of the Upper Chamber's largest group.
At least 35 organizations are either lobbying federal officials about their needs or looking to assist the government in its response to the escalating coronavirus crisis.
The Emergencies Act was carefully crafted and revised in the 1980s so that governments wouldn't have to 'reinvent the wheel' when crisis struck, said the former Liberal whip and army commander.
A senior spokesman for the Conservative Party flatly denied that the national council has any plans to disband the committee and take over the leadership election process.
Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller says funds earmarked for Indigenous communities will flow directly to them to allow for 'maximum flexibility to help adapt responses to address local needs.'
'Given the scope and scale of this crisis, it’s incumbent on the government to provide them with supplementary budgeting to adequately provide the support they’re looking for,' says NDP MP Matthew Green.
Urgent action remains needed to ensure an adequate supply of protective equipment that our front-line workers need to protect them from infection.
The federal government has already announced nearly $2-million in artificial intelligence funding to fight COVID-19.
What was supposed to be a quick, co-operative sitting of the House turned into a negotiating stalemate for hours on March 24 and Nov. 25.
It’s not a matter of ‘if, but when' COVID-19 will reach Canada's prisons, says Sen. Kim Pate, who, like NDP MP Jack Harris, sees it as a matter of ‘life and death,’ and is demanding ‘immediate’ action.
News|Neil Moss
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer notified Congress on March 17 that the new NAFTA will go into effect on June 1.
How all this will play out as this current crisis unfolds is, of course, unknowable. But what is clear is that one day some months from now, we will wake up to a world marked by huge changes.
Donald Trump has called himself a wartime president. The question is: whose side is he on?
Opinion|Scott Taylor
One has to hope that our international leaders will quickly realize that you cannot close the borders to a virus that is already expanded to all corners of the world.
What was their secret? I think it was their optimism, their sense of humour, and their willingness to sacrifice—attributes some of us today seem to lack.
Envoys comment on the ‘uncharted territory’ brought forward by the ‘dreadful ordeal’ COVID-19 brings, and urge co-operation in the global response.
Work inside the Centre Block building continues, but modifications have been made to workers’ daily schedules in light of the COVID-19 outbreak.
This division between Canadians and foreign nationals, us and them, risks stoking racism and xenophobia, which has been frequently reported in the wake of the outbreak.
Times of high unemployment and low interest rates are the right time for new, low-carbon investments and infrastructure.
Opinion|Tim Powers
It isn’t politics as usual, and the Conservatives risk looking tone deaf and self-interested if they march on here.
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