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Post under ‘Ethics’ tag

My Call for an Investigation by the Senate Ethics Officer into Senator Irving Gerstein

12 December 2013 at 19h42

Today, I delivered a letter to Ms. Lyse Ricard, the Senate Ethics Officer, formally requesting an investigation into the conduct of Senator Irving Gerstein:

“Pursuant to Section 44(2) (Request for an inquiry), of the Conflict of Interest Code for Senators, I ask that you hereby investigate the conduct of Senator Irving Gerstein since I have reasonable grounds to believe that Senator Gerstein has not complied with his obligations under Section 2(1)(b) (Principles), Section 8 (Furthering private interests), Section 9 (Use of influence) and Section 10 (Use of information) of the Code”.

Based on the Affidavit of Corporal Greg Horton, a peace officer of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, dated November 15, 2013 and filed with an Ontario Court, I note contradictions with public statements made by Senator Gerstein to the Convention of the Conservative Party which took place on November 2, 2013.  Furthermore, I note violations of the principles of the Code of Ethics for Senators as well as Section 16 of the Parliament of Canada Act, concerning “prohibited compensation”.

I mentioned in the letter: “These facts seem to me sufficient to ask that you proceed with an investigation as Article 44(2) of the Conflict of Interest for Senators authorizes you to do.”

To conclude: “The results of the investigation requested by this letter are of primary importance as they will determine:

What the actual and specific implications are for a Senator who intervenes to counteract or interfere with the work of the Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration of the Senate in order to promote the personal and financial interests of another Senator, thus creating in the eyes of the public the appearance of a conflict of interest, contrary to the obligations of the Conflict of Interest Code for Senators.”

My Call for an Investigation into Senator Boisvenu

20 June 2013 at 15h19

In a letter available here, I have requested that the Senate Ethics Officer, Ms. Lyse Ricard, investigate into the conduct of Senator Pierre-Hugues Boisvenu.

The Senate is not a family-run business where you can hire friends and relatives and give them time off depending on your mood. It is an essential institution, a pillar of our democratic system.

To clarify, my request is based on public statements by Senator Boisvenu and facts widely reported by the media.

The Senate has been a victim of the unethical behavior of a few of its members due to the misguided appointments of Prime Minister Harper; it deserves to be treated as a victim.



Seals: Europe is Closing Its Eyes While Canada Wants to Keep Them Wide Open

26 April 2013 at 14h53


OTTAWA, April 26, 2013 – Senator Hervieux-Payette denounced the decision of the General Court of the European Union, which confirmed the moratorium on Canadian seal products unilaterally proclaiming that “the fundamental economic and social interests of Inuit communities” are preserved.  Interestingly, Inuit communities were at the forefront of the legal challenge on the European boycott and they state just the opposite- their economic and cultural futures are threatened.

The Senator believes that the decision of the European Court is not in the interest of the seals, since they are already subject to slaughter without supervision in some U.S. states and even in Europe, such as Scotland.

“The European denial, influenced by vegetarian extremist groups, prevents the establishment of a market and state supervision over good hunting practices worldwide”, said the Senator. “Europe is closing its eyes when it comes to the situation at hand while Canada wants to keep them wide open.”

The Senator explained that the Mediterranean monk seal, as well as the Bluefin tuna fished by Europeans, are endangered species.  The harp seals, on the other hand, has a population that has been growing for decades.

“Europeans believe that our hunting practices do not meet their ethical standards. But what kind of standards are they when their own seal species is almost extinct and they’re not even acting upon it?”, questioned the Senator.

“I conclude by quoting a documentary by Carmen Butta- ‘le petit chasseur de l’Arctique’ (‘The Small Arctic Hunter’), broadcasted on Arte on January 19, 2013- “Campaigns against the massacre of baby seals were highly publicized. Public opinion was heavily mobilized on the fate of baby seals at the expense of the Aboriginal people. Today, seals in the Arctic are many and it is the Inuit, the specialists of sustainable management of natural resources, who are now endangered”. ”

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Press Release – Grey Seals: The Liberals Call for the Development of a Sustainable Industry

23 October 2012 at 20h36

The Liberal Senate members of the Senate Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans almost unanimously supports the recommendations of the Committee on the management of the grey seal population to assist in the recovery of groundfish stocks – Atlantic cod, American plaice, winter skate, white hake – provided, however, that the government supports the development of an industry of seal products such as omega 3, fur, meat, etc.

“As per witness testimonies, I am convinced that the abundance of grey seals poses a serious threat to some species of fish, including cod,” said Senator Céline Hervieux-Payette.

“However, unlike European countries, it is not in the habit of Canada to harvest seal without using up the resource,” she added. “We must not get caught up in this way which is contrary to our traditions, our way of life and the spirit of the Universal Declaration on the Ethical Harvest of Seals.”


Long Live the Free Press

3 May 2012 at 20h29

OTTAWA, May 3, 2012 – On the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, Senator Hervieux-Payette is grateful to Canadian journalists and to all those who practice a profession vital to democracy and human rights. She also pays tribute to those who lost their lives defending this ideal.

“There can be no liberty and no justice without an independent and free press. All Heads of States, all governments, all politicians who defend individual freedom and justice must guarantee the freedom and independence of this pillar of democracy, “said Senator Hervieux-Payette.

On April 2nd 2012, the Conservative government imposed on CBC journalists a so-called code of values ​​and ethics for journalists employed by public radio and television broadcasters.

“They are asking CBC journalists to pledge allegiance to the government. This political interference aimed at controlling the media is extremely serious. Prime Minister Harper clearly demonstrated that his discourse on transparency and accountability was vote pandering and manipulation”, she stated.

The new “code of conduct” warns that any serious breach is considered “wrongdoing” and that the offending person “is liable to disciplinary action up to and including immediate dismissal.” However, under the Broadcasting Act, employees of the CBC are not subject to this code of ethics and values. Although the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation is a government institution, the Broadcasting Act clearly states in paragraph 44(3) that employees are not officers or servants of Her Majesty.

“After tabling Bill C-30 to spy on Canadians’ electronic communications, the Conservative government has demonstrated that their conception of freedom is limited only to the free-market. The consumer is free. The citizen is under control. The journalist is muzzled “concluded the Senator.


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