As both interest rates and inflation continue to rise and negatively impact many households here in our region, I doubt there is much attention on the current discussion in Ottawa over the Trudeau Liberals invoking of the Emergencies Act earlier this year.
However, that does not mean that many Canadians should not be seriously concerned over what is transpiring in Ottawa on this subject.
To recap, in my February 16, 2022 report I explained the Emergencies Act is the replacement for the former War Measures Act.
The War Measures Act was only used once outside of wartime by Pierre Elliott Trudeau at the request of the Quebec Government in 1970.
The replacement Emergencies Act had never been used until Prime Minister Justin Trudeau decided to invoke it, claiming it was the only way to end the truck protests occurring in Ottawa in February.
As the Canadian Civil Liberties Association describes it:
“The Emergencies Act can only be invoked when a situation "seriously threatens the ability of the Government of Canada to preserve the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Canada" & when the situation "cannot be effectively dealt with under any other law of Canada."
The purpose of my report this week is not to revisit the decision to invoke the act but rather to share my concerns with the process that led up to this decision.
To be clear invoking the Emergencies Act is the most serious action that a Canadian government can take against its own citizens.
In this case some citizens alleged to be involved in the protests had their personal bank accounts frozen based on unverified leaked documents that were reported through some media sources.
This was done without formal verification of the facts and no due process whatsoever for those alleged to be involved.
Indeed, during the Emergencies Act debate in the House of Commons, close to a dozen Liberal MPs, as well as many NDP MPs, claimed that an act of “attempted arson” on behalf of the protestors was part of their justification to vote for invoking the act.
This was a media reported rumour at the time however the Ottawa police have stated that this allegation against the protestors was untrue.
Likewise, some media also reported claims of “armed weapons” being found at the Ottawa trucker protests.
This claim was also cited by many Liberal and NDP MPs as justification for invoking the Emergencies Act.
These allegations have so far been proven to be false.
In other words, many of the claims argued by the Liberal Government, supported once again by the NDP, to justify invoking the Emergencies Act were entirely false.
Fortunately, the law that allows for the invocation of the Emergency Act also requires that an independent review of the use of the act must occur after the fact.
At the same time several groups, including the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, are suing the Liberal Government, claiming the threshold to invoke the Emergencies Act was not met.
A sentiment that I share and is the reason why I voted against invoking the act.
Unfortunately the Trudeau Liberal Government revealed in the Supreme Court that they will claim cabinet confidence in order to withhold many of the reasons that led up to them deciding to invoke the Emergency Act.
My question this week:
Are you concerned that this Liberal Government decided to invoke the Emergencies Act and is now withholding the reasons why from Canadians?
I can be reached at Dan.Albas@parl.gc.ca or call toll free 1-800-665-8711.
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Dan Albas is the Member of Parliament for the riding of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola.