Cathay Wagantall, M.P.
 
 
 
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"The Great Reset?"
 
I hope you and yours are well as we enter the Christmas season. 
 
News and social media have been abuzz this month with speculation about a so-called "Great Reset" of Canada's economy. When challenged, Justin Trudeau has attempted to dismiss it as a baseless conspiracy theory. However, in a September address to the United Nations, he said directly:  "This pandemic has provided an opportunity for a reset. This is our chance to accelerate our pre-pandemic efforts to re-imagine economic systems...”
 
It’s hard to believe that anyone would look at the carnage caused by COVID-19 and see an opportunity. It’s even harder to believe that anyone would think this is the right time for an agenda that will create even more uncertainty.
 
To rebuild post-pandemic, Conservatives support getting as many people back to work as quickly as possible in every sector, including natural resource development. The Liberals are, instead, bent on “re-imagining economic systems” and launching a vast and risky economic experiment – one that is uncertain, at best.

This isn’t the time for “reimagining” the economy and this isn’t the time to toy with our future. This is the time to overcome COVID-19, protect the vulnerable, and save jobs. And, once the pandemic is behind us, build back our economy as quickly as possible.

Canada’s Conservatives’ priorities are jobs, growth, prosperity and, above all else, to bring back certainty.
 
The only reset Canada needs is the removal of Justin Trudeau as Prime Minister of Canada. The only possibility to ensure that takes place is to elect Erin O’Toole as the next Prime Minister and the Conservative Party of Canada to a majority government.

Why?

Because we passionately love our sovereign nation and every person who calls Canada home.
 
If you haven't already, I invite you to sign MP Pierre Poilievre's petition, which calls on the government to end plans to impose "the great reset." 
 
Here is what to expect in this month's e-newsletter:
 
  1. Honouring our Veterans
  2. Hon. Erin O'Toole: Freedom of expression a founding principle of Canada
  3. Update on my private member's bill, the Sex Selective Abortion Act (C-233)
  4. Hon. Michelle Rempel Garner: It's time for a better COVID strategy
  5. "At work in Ottawa"
 
Blessings,

Cathay Wagantall, MP
Yorkton--Melville
 
Honouring our Veterans
Taking Time to Remember
 
On November 11th, we had the chance to pause and remember the sacrifices of millions of Canadians in uniform. I had the honour of taking in two very different experiences of Remembrance. At 11AM, Yorkton Legion 77 shared its ceremony virtually. Then, at 2PM, Stockholm Legion 265 hosted a drive-in ceremony on Main Street. Both were heartfelt tributes to our fallen and to all who have served and are serving to protect our Canadian freedoms. Thanks to all involved - including the organizers and volunteers - as well as for the invitation to participate. Here are photos from both events:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Veterans Affairs Canada backlog contributing to Veterans' "Sanctuary Trauma" 
 
It is saddening that, less than a month after honouring Veterans for their selfless service and sacrifice for Canada on Remembrance Day, they are telling Members of Parliament heartbreaking stories about the effect the ongoing disability benefit claim backlog at Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) is having on their mental health. Sanctuary trauma is deeply rooted in their sense of this Liberal government's lack of sacred obligation.
 
Veterans like Shane Jones have valid concerns about the way they are being treated by VAC. Recently, I asked the Minister of Veterans Affairs when a long-promised review of his file would be completed. As expected, I did not receive a direct answer.
 
At Veterans Affairs Committee, Veteran Charles Scott provided a frank assessment of the process of receiving care from VAC. He said:

"The onus has always been placed on the injured and ill to advocate for themselves and to navigate a gauntlet of processes for these applications... The processes are extreme. They subject the Veteran and their families to sanctuary trauma."
 
I invite you to watch both exchanges below. Our Veterans deserve better.
 
 
 
 
November 17th Question Period exchange on behalf of Shane Jones
 
WATCH HERE
 
November 12th Veterans Committee exchange with Charles Scott
 
WATCH HERE
 
The Somalia Affair: Canadians deserve to know the truth
 
Here is my statement in the House of Commons on Wednesday, November 18, 2020:
 
Racism in all its forms is unacceptable, especially within the Canadian Armed Forces. Recently in the Globe and Mail, former Defence Minister David Pratt was right to call it out. However, his misguided assertion that racism was solely to blame for the Somalia Affair is an attempt to mislead Canadians about what truly happened in Somalia.

Members of the Canadian Airborne Regiment were poisoned with illegal use of the antimalarial drug, mefloquine. Shamefully, the Liberals shut down the Somalia Inquiry just before the misuse and impact of Mefloquine toxicity was to be exposed. As a result, the Airborne was disbanded. Mefloquine became DND’s preferred antimalarial drug until 2017. Families have been destroyed. Lives have been upended or lost to suicide.

The impact of mefloquine on the Somalia Affair should have been investigated. While our allies have shown compassion and support for their soldiers impacted by this drug, this Liberal government prefers to meet our veterans in court.

The Somalia Affair is a painful chapter of our history. Our Veterans and all Canadians deserve to know the truth. This is one apology the Liberals refuse to take responsibility for.
 
 
 
Click above to watch my statement in the House of Commons regarding the Somalia Affair and the effect of Mefloquine toxicity on our Veterans.
 
WATCH HERE
 
Hon. Erin O'Toole: Freedom of expression a founding principle of Canada 
 
 
Here in Canada, freedom of expression is a pillar of our democracy. It sits among the values ​​we hold dearest; one we simply cannot negotiate.
 
This principle is expressly guaranteed by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Introduced by Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau, the Charter gives every Canadian the right to be informed, to testify, to organize, to campaign, to stand for election and, also, the right to offend others through words and actions; as long as they are not criminal in nature.
 
Regrettably, in the wake of the recent Islamist attacks in France, killings committed as acts of revenge for our freedoms, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau insisted he did not believe in free speech if it could be used to offend someone.
 
To be frank, these words are unworthy of a Canadian prime minister. They once again show Trudeau bowing to ideological Twitter mobs rather than standing up for a founding principle of our country.
 
Let’s be clear: no dogma, whether political or religious, is immune from criticism. As my colleague Gerard Deltell put it so well in the House of Commons, “Freedom of expression does not exist only when it suits us … It must exist especially when it does not suit our business.” And I will go further: tolerance, which truly defines our country, should not be a one-way street.
 
Over the past few decades, our courts have delivered landmark judgments on freedom of expression. These decisions make it clear the criticism of an ideology or a religion, especially if done with humour, is not only permitted but protected. Indeed, fortunately for the vitality of our public debates, no one has a right to not be offended. This is the very essence of democracy. If Trudeau wants to limit our freedom of expression, he must say so clearly in an election and let the people decide.
 
This Remembrance Week, we honour the sacrifice of our veterans who gave up so much so that we may live in a country where all are free to express their views. A free society where criticism is accepted, and debates can be held. It is deplorable then that Trudeau refused to stand alongside our French allies in the fight against censorship even as we honour the memory of Canadians who fell in battle to free France from dictatorship.
 
Ever the grand preacher of virtue, Trudeau preferred to teach us a lesson and lament our “close-mindedness.”
 
But let’s not be fooled. We are one of the most open, welcoming and tolerant societies in the world. A country where everyone has the right to speak, as shocking as this may be for some.
 
I say this with conviction and pride: whether it’s debates at home or human rights abroad, an O’Toole government will always stand up for freedom of expression.
It is foundational to who we are as Canadians.
 
-The Hon. Erin O'Toole
Leader of the Official Opposition
 
 
Updates on C-233: Sex Selective Abortion Act
 
This month, I continued to make the case for my private member's bill, C-233: the Sex Selective Abortion Act. I firmly believe that sex-selective abortion is not permissible in a society that advocates for the equal protection of human rights between men and women. That’s why adopting appropriate legislation to end discrimination against any person based on sex must be part of Canada’s commitment to advancing human rights.
 
Thankfully, I'm not alone in making my argument. In addition to 84% of Canadians who believe the practice should be illegal, I'm pleased to announce that the bill has been endorsed by the UNITED SIKHS and the Vedic Hindu Cultural Society of British Columbia.
 
Canadians of all backgrounds, religious beliefs, and political views are prepared to draw the line at sex-selective abortion and have said that we need a law against it.
 
That's why I was honoured to table C-233 in the House of Commons on February 26, 2020. If passed, the bill would amend the Criminal Code to create a new penalty for medical practitioners who knowingly perform an abortion when the sole reason is the genetic sex of the pre-born child. The bill also includes a directive for guidelines to be established on how information outlining the prohibition on sex selective abortion is provided by a medical practitioner to a pregnant person.
 
I encourage you to learn more at www.cathaywagantall.ca/c233
 
Coaldale, AB volunteers plant pink flags to Defend Girls
 
 
Click above to watch a short video, produced by dedicated volunteers in Coaldale, AB, on their efforts to raise awareness amongst Canadians on the practice of sex-selective abortion. Thank you for your support of C-233!
 
WATCH HERE
 
News Release: Vedic Hindu Cultural Society of BC endorses C-233: the Sex Selective Abortion Act
 
For Immediate Release
November 23, 2020
 
OTTAWA, ON — As more Canadians learn about the practice of sex-selective abortion in Canada, support is mounting for Bill C-233: the Sex Selective Abortion Act. Cathay Wagantall, Member of Parliament for Yorkton—Melville, today announced that her Private Member’s Bill has been backed by the Vedic Hindu Cultural Society of British Columbia.
 
“I thank the Vedic Hindu Cultural Society for their strong words of support,” said Wagantall. “Polls indicate cross-country agreement amongst Canadians of all beliefs—84%, in fact—for the prohibition of sex-selection abortion. However, public statements go the extra mile and put a face to the numbers.
 
In its statement, the Vedic Hindu Cultural Society declared that C-233 is a “reasonable limit” on abortion that would work to enhance Canada’s human rights image. Canada remains the only country, other than North Korea, to lack any law or limit on abortion. As a consequence, the Canadian Medical Association has indicated that sex-selection abortion is a problem in Canada.
 
Wagantall noted that it is a problem Canadians are no longer willing to accept.
“If just one girl is terminated simply because she is a girl, Canada has an obligation to act. Members of Parliament have been given the public consensus needed to pass C-233.”
 
When enacted, C-233 will prohibit a medical practitioner from performing an abortion on the grounds of the pre-born child’s sex. Those convicted could face a prison sentence of up to five years.
 
“Our Criminal Code must reflect the values of Canadians,” concluded Wagantall. “This is above being a pro-life or pro-choice issue. It is a Canadian issue.”
 
To read the Vedic Hindu Cultural Society’s letter of endorsement, click here.
 
News Release: UNITED SIKHS endorses C-233: the Sex Selective Abortion Act
 
For Immediate Release
November 12, 2020
 
OTTAWA, ON — Cathay Wagantall, Member of Parliament for Yorkton—Melville, has welcomed the endorsement of her private member’s bill, C-233: the Sex Selective Abortion Act, by UNITED SIKHS.

“This is a wonderful endorsement from the Canadian Sikh community and another clear indicator that Canadians stand shoulder to shoulder on human rights and gender equality for those who don’t yet have a voice,” said Wagantall. “Canadians of all backgrounds, faiths, and political perspectives oppose the practice of sex-selective abortion in our country.”

The UNITED SIKHS is a U.N.-affiliated, international non-profit, non-governmental, humanitarian relief, human development and advocacy organization aimed at empowering those in need; especially disadvantaged and minority communities across the world. The letter of endorsement, signed by Sukhwinder Singh — the Canadian National Director of UNITED SIKHS — notes that C-233 “proposes a reasonable limit that would reflect Canada’s respect for human rights at all stages of life.”

“The practice sex-selective abortion takes place in Canada and it is our duty to defend those whose lives would be ended simply because of their sex,” the letter stated.

Wagantall hopes that the public endorsement of UNITED SIKHS will encourage other concerned groups to come forward in support of her bill.
 
“C-233 is a simple bill that aims to accomplish one thing: to ban abortion sought solely because of the sex of the child,” continued Wagantall. “It shouldn’t take place in our country, and Canadians agree. I applaud UNITED SIKHS’ leadership in recognizing the need for a law.”

To read the UNITED SIKHS' letter of endorsement, click here.
 
Petitions piling up in support of a law against sex-selective abortion
 
 
Thousands of Canadians from every region of the country have taken the time to sign and send petitions to my office in support of a law against the practice of sex-selective abortion. It is my honour to table them in the House of Commons.
 
SIGN THE PETITION
 
 
 
Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. As we recover from COVID-19, remember to support #SmallBusinessEveryDay.
 
Hon Michelle Rempel Garner: It's time for a better COVID strategy  
 
 
On Friday, the prime minister released new national COVID-19 projections, which suggest that Canada could see daily totals in the neighbourhood of 20,000 cases in the next few weeks.
 
These numbers are staggering, particularly when we consider what Canadians have been through this year.
 
Eleven months have passed since we first heard about the spread of COVID-19. More than 11,000 Canadians have died, hundreds of billions of dollars have been added to the national debt, millions have lost their jobs and businesses, civil liberties are being infringed upon, children have lost months of schooling, families have separated from one another and a national mental health crisis is emerging, all due to COVID-19 lockdown measures — designed to be temporary and buy time to develop better solutions — becoming a permanent and repetitive course of action.
 
Canada is arguably far worse off than we were just a few months ago.
 
We need a new plan to protect Canadians and move forward out of this crisis.
 
We need to start with the basics: good, public data upon which to make decisions. It’s unacceptable that at this point in the journey, there is conflicting or limited information about how many people have actually had COVID in Canada and what our national level of immunity is, who is most vulnerable and why, and how COVID is spreading in Canada.
 
In fact, the federal Liberals haven’t even bothered to put in place a system to gather this data, in spite of public health officials, scientists and legislators begging for it. This means we can’t judge if the measures that are being taken to stop the spread are effective. Given Friday’s projections it’s pretty easy to argue that they aren’t.
 
In turn, this means we don’t know why Canada’s COVID prevention measures aren’t working. Is it because people don’t think COVID is severe and just don’t want to comply with the regulations? Is it because they can’t afford to isolate? Is it because of the stigma and delays associated with testing? Is it all of the above and more, or is it something else?
 
This failure also means we can’t evaluate if the measures we’ve taken to stop the spread of the virus in the population at large have more or less benefit than the negative societal impacts of job losses, undiagnosed medical conditions, loved ones dying in hospitals with no one by their side, families being separated across borders, mental health and addiction issues that have arisen from lockdown and encroachment on our civil liberties.
 
We should be openly questioning the competence of the Trudeau government, because they’re asking Canadians to keep sacrificing and trusting them while they are making gross failures on this and so many other fronts. This includes the failure to deliver high volumes of rapid or at-home COVID tests to Canadians.
 
Since early this year, experts around the world were warning that the ability to rapidly and frequently test for COVID is mission critical to stop the spread of COVID. Instead of moving heaven and earth to get Canadians these tests, as recently as three weeks ago, Canada’s health minister downplayed their importance.
 
Now, the government is projecting record numbers of new cases. And to the great puzzlement of the media and health experts alike, the Trudeau Liberals still haven’t delivered much information about vaccines, even though it’s becoming clear they’re pinning their hopes on one coming soon. We don’t know much about potential efficacy in vulnerable populations, or how a vaccine would be deployed to Canadians and who would get it in what order. Not having rapid tests and waiting on a vaccine without these pertinent roll-out details, while relying on the dangerously blunt policy of mass lockdown, is deadly folly.
 
Today, we need publicly available comprehensive data on COVID-19 to judge the appropriateness of our policy. We need immediate action to deploy widespread rapid testing for all Canadians, including providing access to at-home tests. We need to develop more effective and targeted measures to prevent the spread of COVID and identify, isolate and support those infected, as opposed to expecting the entire Canadian public to continue to endure lockdown. We need to explain to Canadians how, when and where they will be able to get a vaccine when it becomes available.
 
We needed this months ago, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau didn’t deliver. He can’t just look at provincial governments during a time of national crisis. There is no more time for Trudeau to buy with the sacrifices of Canadians.
 
We now need political leadership of Churchillian strength. We need bureaucrats and naysayers to be told that it’s not a question of if we can do these things, but how, and to make it so — quickly.
 
There’s too much at stake for anything less.
 
- The Hon. Michelle Rempel Garner
Canada's Shadow Minister for Health
 
At Work in Ottawa
 
 
Thanks to Chris Lohnes and Gen. (Ret'd) Peter Holt of AUDEAMUS, as well as Dr. Darlene Chalmers, Dr. Colleen Dell, Dr. Linzi Williamson, and Maryellen Gibson, for their invaluable expertise and years of work on the benefit of service dogs for our Veterans. We had a fascinating meeting on November 24th.
 
It was all smiles during my November 23rd meeting with Noah Silvaggio (and mom Tara), Meela Cherepuschak (and mom Natasha), and Patrick Tohill of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Canada. Thanks for the briefing and for your bravery in living with type 1 diabetes. I'm sending you my prayers as you work toward a cure.
 
 
 
I was thankful for the chance to meet with representatives of the Undergraduates of Canadian Research Intensive Universities. They detailed the concerns of students on the affordability and accessibility of post-secondary education in Canada, and their recommendations for solutions.
 
On November 24th, I had a very productive meeting with representatives of the National Police Federation - Morgan Buckingham, Bobby Baker and Kenneth Boddy - discussing issues of concern to the RCMP. Thank you!
 
 
If you are not already subscribed to this E-Newsletter, you can stay up-to-date on the latest from Cathay Wagantall, MP by subscribing here.
 
 
Cathay Wagantall, M.P.
Suite 746, Confederation Building
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
cathay.wagantall@parl.gc.ca
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© 2020 Cathay Wagantall, M.P.
 
 
 
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