Le Senateur

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S'enregistrer au Flux RSS Le Sénat du Canada

‘International’ category

Transpacific Partnership: will Canada suffer dumping to the detriment of our food safety?

21 June 2021 at 15h42

Hon. Céline Hervieux-Payette: Honourable senators, my question is for the Leader of the Government in the Senate. The announcement that the Government of Canada will be participating in free trade negotiations with the Pacific Rim countries raises not just the issue of protecting our supply management system, but also the issues of environmental dumping and social dumping, which could plague Canada even more.

Dumping occurs when goods are imported at a price lower than their value because production standards in the country of origin are lower than those for goods produced in Canada. Some countries sell competitive goods on the Canadian market because their minimum wage, if it exists, is lower than ours, their labour rights provide less protection for workers than what is afforded to our workers, and their health and environmental standards are lower than Canada’s. Thus, not only does our agri-food industry face unfair competition, but our societal model and food safety are also threatened.

Can the leader tell us if, as a member of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Canada would strongly oppose imports of products that could erode the working conditions of Canadian workers and lower the quality of the products they produce?


My Declaration in the Senate supporting Coptic Christians in Egypt

17 February 2021 at 15h29

Honourable senators, I would like to talk about the alarming events affecting our Christian brothers in Egypt. I am referring to the Copts who have been in Egypt since the dawn of time, at least since the birth of Christianity.

According to the information I have received from friends living in Canada and around the world, since the Arab Spring, Salafists have continuously tortured Copts, sometimes to the point of death. The number of cases is staggering. Although Christians have always experienced persecution in that part of the world, never has it been as horrific as in the past year or so.

One of the first incidents I heard about had to do with a Salafist who cut off a Christian’s ear because the Christian had supposedly rented an apartment to a morally corrupt woman. The incident ended with what is called a “reconciliation meeting” that takes place under the auspices of state security, in front of members of the majority community, during which the victim was forced to forgive his aggressor. No trial, no justice. With this kind of community justice system, the aggressor — supported by the majority — becomes the judge, imposes conditions and pronounces the verdict.

This first incident served as an example and we could list dozens more of the same nature, with the same outcome, all over Upper Egypt, in Cairo and now in Alexandria. (more…)

My Letter to Governor Rick Perry

10 November 2021 at 15h23

Dear Governor Perry:

Like many Canadians and Americans, I was shocked to hear about the way that Judge William Adams beat his young daughter with a belt. What makes it worse is that his daughter, Hillary, has a disability. I would have thought this type of incident would have taken place in China, where the video of an eight-year-old being hit and having his hands crushed by an adult in the middle of the street has gone viral on the internet. No matter what offences these children committed, the punishments they received have no place in a so-called civilized society.

Unfortunately, violence as a way of rearing children dates back many years, forming part of an outdated belief system. In fact, it is difficult to put a stop to this type of violence because there are still so many people who support it as an effective education tool.

I say “attempting” because all modern studies, based on the most recent scientific evidence in fields like paediatrics, psychoanalysis and child psychiatry, show that violence is not actually an effective way of rearing children. In fact, it can cause problems for children on the receiving end: at best, violence can hinder their growth and success, and at worst it can disrupt society, a cost that has always been underestimated.


Canada-USA: A World of Difference

21 October 2021 at 18h05


Last week, I had the honor of being invited to Auburn University in Alabama from October 10-13, 2011. It was nice to be surrounded by bright students who showed an interest in understanding the Canadian perspective.

On Monday October, 10 I taught a class in French on the Achievements of Women in Canada and Québec. I was an amazing feeling to be teaching these young adults in French in the middle of the southern United States.


Free Asia Bibi!

30 September 2021 at 17h06

Dear friends, yesterday I tabled a motion stating that the Senate of Canada immediately requests that Pakistan immediately release Asia Bibi, a young woman who has been jailed for 2 years in a tiny cell. Her crime? She was accused of blasphemy. Asia Bibi’s health is deteriorating and has almost no contact with her family. It is therefore urgent to get out of this situation. Here’s the speech I gave yesterday in the Senate:



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