The NDP will have an opposition today to debate Finn Donelly’s motion on care for veterans. The motion states that the government has a moral, social and fiduciary obligation to provide “equitable financial compensation and support services to past and active members of the Canadian Armed Forces who have been injured, disabled or have died as a result of military service, and to their dependents.” The House will also vote on another NDP opposition day motion stating that the government should remove the GST from feminine hygiene products. From left to right: NDP MP Irene Mathyssen, Lele Truong, Jen Lapalme, Mariana Hollmann, Kathleen Fraser, Lauren Jervis, Jill Piebiak, Jenn Jefferys, NDP MP and Status of Women critic Mylene Freeman, pictured at the Famous Five statue on Parliament Hill in support of the 'No Tax on Tampons' campaign on May 7. Photograph courtesy Jenn Jefferys NDP MP Irene Mathyssen (London-Fanshawe, Ont.) introduced the motion in the House on May 8 saying that tax policies favour males. “Federal tax policies are structured such that the ratio of profit between women and men is 60:40 or less. In other words, federal tax policy favours those with a higher income and since men, by and large, earn higher incomes than women, men are advantaged and women are disadvantaged under current taxation regimes,” she told the House. “Women, on average, make only 78 per cent of the wages enjoyed by men for doing work of equal value. The same reality of inequities touches on almost every part of women's experience in this country.” Ms. Mathyssen noted that in the Excise Tax Act in which feminine hygiene products fall under, it is labeled as a “luxury” product. “As a woman, I think I can call myself an expert on this topic, and while I have heard menstruation described in many ways, the curse, the crimson tide, a visit from auntie flow, monthlies, feeling delicate or the big red monster, I have never heard it described as a luxury,” she said. “Why then are feminine hygiene products, pads and tampons, treated as luxury items under the Excise Tax Act? Why are women discriminated against while this tax leaves such things as wedding cakes, chocolate chips, cocktail cherries and Viagra exempt?” She said that taxing feminine hygiene products is a symbol of the systemic inequality women face in Canada. “There is one way that we in the House can correct gender injustice right here, right now. Today we have the opportunity to make a minor adjustment to the Excise Tax Act that would remove the GST from feminine hygiene products,” she said. The government indicated that last week that it would support the motion. Meanwhile, the House will also debate the eighth report of the Finance Committee as NDP MP Guy Caron (Rimouski-Neigette-Témiscouata-Les Basques, Que.) moved that it be concurred in. The report, Towards Prosperity: Federal Budgetary Priorities for People, Business, and Communities, was reported to the House in December, 2014, and contains two supplementary reports—one from the NDP and one from the Liberals. The NDP wrote in their minority report that the Finance Committee’s report is “an imperfect document.” It acknowledged, however, that “it does include a great deal of important content from the dozens of witnesses who were able to appear before the committee. Unfortunately, many of the majority’s recommendations are self-congratulatory and fail to address the challenges that we face.” In their dissenting report, the Liberals said because the Finance Committee has endorsed the status quo, “the majority report represents a missed opportunity for the Committee to provide the government with meaningful guidance on the upcoming federal budget.” The committee report made 47 recommendations, addressing issues such as balancing the federal budget and ensuring fiscal sustainability and economic growth; health, education and training; increasing competitiveness through research, development, innovation and commercialization; support for infrastructure; improving taxation and regulatory regimes; and maximizing jobs. In case you missed it Conservative MP Patrick Brown (Barrie, Ont.) was elected the Ontario Progressive Conservative leader on May 9. “We have completed a rigorous leadership campaign. Unlike some parties, we do not anoint our leaders,” he said at the Toronto Congress Centre. “We test them, and this has been a long test.” Mr. Brown defeated Ontario MPP Christine Elliott by more than 2,500 electoral votes to win the contest. Canadian Press reporter Jennifer Ditchburn, pictured left, won the Charles Lynch Award for her career achievement in political reporting. It was announced at the annual Parliamentary Press Gallery Dinner on May 9. Ms. Ditchburn has been covering the Hill since 1997, formerly as a CBC reporter. After receiving praise on winning the award, Ms. Ditchburn tweeted: "Friends, thanks for your kind words. Honoured & overwhelmed to receive an award bearing name of such a legendary journalist as Charles Lynch." The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright Suspended Senator Mike Duffy’s trial on fraud, breach of trust and bribery has adjourned until June 1. To catch up on the trial, visit The Hill Times website. On the agenda (all times local) Events Foreign Affairs Minister Rob Nicholson (Niagara Falls, Ont.) will travel to Ukraine from May 11-12 and then to Turkey for the NATO Foreign Ministers meetings from May 13-14. Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau (Papineau, Que.) will deliver a keynote address at the Canadian Club of Toronto entitled “How Fairness and Growth for the Middle Class Benefits Everyone.” 12:45 p.m., Royal York hotel, Toronto, Ont. MPs and Senators will gather at the main stairs of Parliament Hill with members of the National Health and Fitness Day Advisory Council to raise awareness about wearing life jackets. 3:30 p.m. Ottawa, Ont. Announcements Associate Defence Minister Julian Fantino (Vaughan, Ont.) will make an announcement regarding investments at CFB Borden. 9:30 a.m. Borden, Ont. Conservative MP Tilly O’Neill Gordon (Miramichi, N.B.) will make an announcement with New Brunswick Finance Minister Roger Melanson regarding infrastructure funding. 11:30 a.m. Miramichi, N.B. House committee hearings International Trade Minister Ed Fast (Abbotsford, B.C.) will appear before the International Trade Committee to discuss the main estimates for the Canadian Commercial Corporation as well as on the committee’s study of opportunities for small- and medium-sized businesses to compete globally. 3:30 p.m., room C-110, 1 Wellington St. The Canadian Heritage Committee will meet at 3:30 p.m. in room 228, 151 Sparks St., to continue its review of the Canadian feature film industry. Justice Minister Peter MacKay (Central Nova, N.S.) will appear before the Justice Committee to discuss the main estimates for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and other agencies. 3:30 p.m., room 237-C Centre Block. Senate Committee hearings The National Security and Defence Committee will meet at 1 p.m. in room 2, Victoria Building, to study security threats facing Canada. The committee will hear from Correctional Service Canada commissioner Don Head. Official Languages Commissioner Graham Fraser will appear before the Official Languages Committee at 5 p.m. in room 9, Victoria Building, to discuss best practices for language policies and second-language learning in a context of linguistic duality or plurality as well as Bill S-205, Communications with and Services to the Public.