2012 Annual Report – Legislation

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2012 Annual Report
Legislation
Anne Gorman

Monitor and study of legislation at all levels of government

Bills and motions at the federal level

The following were studied at council level and responded to through letters, e-mails, petitions and phone calls. (Acts were introduced in the 41st Parliament unless otherwise stated.)

  • C-4      Preventing Human Smugglers from Abusing Canada’s Immigration Systems Act (Resolution 2005.05 Appeal Provision for Refused Refugee Claimants)
  • C-6      Assisted Human Reproduction Act  (Royal Assent March 29, 2004 in 37th Parliament 3rd  Session)
  • C-10    Safe Streets and Communities Act (Resolution 2008.06 Revision of the Youth Criminal Justice Act)
  • C-20    Fair Representation Act
  • C-30   Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act (Resolution 2009.02 Protection and Support Services for Foreign Victims of Human Trafficking and Resolution 2008.01 Preventing Human Trafficking at 2010 Olympics)
  • C-31    Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act (Resolution 2005.05 Appeal Provision for Refused Refugee Claimants)
  • C-38    Jobs, Growth and Long-term Prosperity Act
  • C-44    Helping Families in Need Act
  • C-54    Protecting Children From Sexual Predators Act (Resolution 2009.02 Protection and Support Services for Foreign Victims of Human Trafficking and Resolution 2008.01 Preventing Human Trafficking at 2010 Olympics)
  • C-212 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (luring a child outside Canada) (Resolution 2009.02 Protection and Support Services for Foreign Victims of Human Trafficking and Resolution 2008.01 Preventing Human Trafficking at 2010 Olympics)
  • C-213  An Act to amend the Criminal Code (means of communication for child luring) (Resolution 2009.02 Protection and Support Services for Foreign Victims of Human Trafficking and Resolution 2008.01 Preventing Human Trafficking at 2010 Olympics)
  • C-233 Poverty Elimination Act (Resolution 2004.02 Children Living in  Poverty)
  • C-241 An Act to amend the Canadian Bill of Rights (right to housing)
  • C-257 An Act to amend the Food and Drugs Act (mandatory labelling for genetically modified foods) (Resolution 1997.06 Genetically Engineered Foods)
  • C-267 Canada Water Preservation Act (Resolution 2004.07 Water Use in Canada)
  • C-268 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (minimum sentences for offences involving trafficking of persons under the age of eighteen years) (40th Parliament 3rd Session) (Resolution 2009.02 Protection and Support Services for Foreign Victims of Human Trafficking and Resolution 2008.01 Preventing Human Trafficking at 2010 Olympics)
  • C-273 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (cyberbullying) (Resolution 2002.02 Anti-Bullying Programs)
  • C-300 Federal Framework for Suicide Prevention Act (Resolution 2004.06 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention)
  • C-304 An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act (protecting freedom) (Resolution 2006.02 Legal Protection for All Those Who Object to the Solemnization for Civil Marriage for Same-sex Partners)
  • C-310 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (trafficking in persons (Resolution 2009.02 Protection and Support Services for Foreign Victims of Human Trafficking)
  • C-314 Breast Density Awareness Act
  • C-331 Ukrainian Canadian Restitutions Act (37th Parliament 3rd  Session)
  • C-340 National Renewable Energy Strategy Act (Resolution 2006.04 Renewable Energy)
  • C-384 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (right to die with dignity) (40th Parliament 3rd Session) (Resolution 2007.03 Hospice Palliative Care: An Integral Component of the Canadian Health Care System)
  • C-398 An Act to amend the Patent Act (drugs for international humanitarian purposes)
  • C-400 Secure, Adequate, Accessible and Affordable Housing Act (Resolution 2003.01 Affordable Housing for Low-Income Canadians)

Legislation at the provincial level

B.C. & Yukon:

  • Ÿ  Criminal Code Section 293 (Polygamy), The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Supreme Court of British Columbia 2011 BCSC 1588.
  • Ÿ  Public Health Act “Regulated Activities Regulations” (tanning beds)

Manitoba:

  • Ÿ  Bill 37 The Highway Traffic Amendment and Summary Convictions Amendment Act (Bicycle Helmets)

Ontario:

  • Ÿ  Bill 13 Accepting Schools Act, 2012
  • Ÿ  Bill 14 Anti-bullying Act, 2012
  • Ÿ  Bill 30 Family Caregiver Leave Act (Employment Standards Amendment 1, 2012
  • Ÿ  Bill 33 Toby’s Act (Right to be Free from Discrimination and Harassment Because of Gender Identity or Gender Expression), 2012
  • Ÿ  Bill 48 Alzheimer Advisory Council Act, 2012
  • Ÿ  Bill 74 Skin Cancer Prevention Act, 2012
  • Ÿ  Bill 115 Putting Students First Act, 2012
  • Ÿ   Bill 122 Broader Public Sector Accountability Act, 2010

General action by members on legislation at provincial and federal levels

Letter-writing instruction workshops were held in many councils using the League’s Personal Letter Writing Guide as a reference. Reports indicated that councils generated between one and 30 letters per council.

Efforts to educate members on legislation
Members were urged to become familiar with Hansard, parliamentary websites (www.parl.gc.ca, and LEGISinfo), provincial government websites and CPAC (Canadian Public Affairs Channel). They were encouraged to view the parliamentary process from the public galleries where possible and view podcasts of specific events such as the throne speech, question period and presentation of the budget. Members were encouraged to acquaint themselves with their political representatives at all levels.

Preparation of briefs and position papers on proposed legislation
One council reported reviewing provincial and national briefs and position papers.

Activities undertaken
Councils continued to face the challenge of filling legislation standing committees, but did remarkable work. Four provincial councils combined the legislation and resolutions standing committees. The tone of the reports was mixed, from excitement and awe at what was accomplished to trepidation and fear for not having enough chairpersons. While many reports indicated members were intimidated by this standing committee, those who accepted the role gained confidence by reviewing reports of past work and rising to the challenge of the learning process.