Catholic Women's League of Saskatchewan

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CURRENT LEGISLATION COMMUNIQUÉS

  

  

  

[Previous Communiques are HERE]

  

  

  


    

Legislation Communiqué #4 - October 22, 2020  

Shirley Lamoureux, Provincial Legislation Chairperson

        

My dear Sisters in CWL,

  

I hope with all my heart and prayers you are all well and coping under the confinement of Covid19 and guidelines set up for our safety and well-being.  Pray! Pray! Pray!

  

Following the proroguing of parliament, members of parliament returned to their parliamentary duties on September 23rd.  Presently 54 bills are before the House of Commons that have completed first reading and 11 bills before the Senate that have completed first reading.

  

Unfortunately, Bill C-7, an Act to amend the Criminal Code (medical assistance in dying), has been brought back and is among those that have now completed first reading.  The Federal Government introduced the bill (sponsored by the Minister of Justice) and have vowed to move it quickly through Parliament.  Please encourage your members to send letters and contact their local members of parliament to voice their concerns.  Time is of the essence! Now would be a great time to gather as a small group (with appropriate social distancing and masking) to write letters to their members and let them know our concerns.  Remember together we are strong.

  

The Federal Government has put Canadians’ health and well-being first throughout the pandemic.  To date, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) has helped nearly nine million Canadians and their families make ends meet and stay safe.  Bill C-4 An Act relating to certain measures in response to Covid-19, sponsored by the Minister of Employment, workforce development and disability inclusion, received royal assent on October 2nd.  For Canadians unable to work for reasons related to Covid-19, this legislation creates three new temporary recovery benefits that will be in place for one year beginning September 27th, 2020.

  

According to the federal government website, Canadians will be able to apply through the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for the following benefits:

  

  • A Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) of $500.00 per week for up to 26 weeks per household for workers unable to work for at least 50% of the week because they must care for a child under the age of 12 or a family member because of schools, day-care or care facilities that are closed due to COVID-19; or because the child or family member is sick and/or required to quarantine or is at high risk of serious health implications because of COVID-19; and
  • A Canada Recovery Sickness benefit (CRSB) of $500.00 per week for up to a maximum of two weeks, for workers who are unable to work for at least 50% of the week because they contracted COVID-19, self-isolated for reasons related to COVID-19, or have underlying conditions, are undergoing treatments or have contracted other sicknesses that, in the opinion of a medical practitioner, nurse practitioner, person in authority, government or public health authority, would make them more susceptible to COVID-19.

  

As part of the Act, the federal government is also extending the application of the Public Health Event of National Concern Payments Act (PHENCPA) to December 31, 2020.  This extension will allow government to continue investing in vaccines and therapeutics, to continue to support testing and tracing, and to procure personal protective equipment (PPE) for essential workers.  It will also allow for the continued support of the health-care systems.  This Act is essential in ensuring ongoing support for Canada and Canadians as they fight the second wave of this virus.

  

Bill C-4 provides the government an opportunity to help Canadians get back to work safely by supporting Canadians and businesses.

  

Betty Colaneri, in her communique, asks that we encourage our members to continue to monitor bills at each stage.  I just tap into:  Parliament of Canada: LegisInfo.  There you will find information of legislation before Parliament and information on each bill.

  

Betty’s message:  “May the light of God surround you, the love of God enfold you, the power of God protect you and the presence of God watch over you and your families”.

  

            “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in times of trouble” (Ps 46:1)

  

Sending many blessings and prayers that you and your families stay healthy and safe through this pandemic.  Remember there is strength in prayer. 

    

  

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Legislation Communiqué #3 - October 5, 2020  

Shirley Lamoureux, Provincial Legislation Chairperson

        

Law is not law, if it violates the principles of eternal justice”  (Lydia Maria Child)

  

The following is a list of the Resolutions that the CWL delegation were to discuss with the Ministers of the Federal Government: 

  

2015.01 – Increased Early Access and Intervention to Children and Youth Mental Health Services.

2016.04 – Amend the Canada Health Act to Identify Palliative Care as an Insured Health Service.

2016.05 – Amend the Canada Health Act to include Home Care as an Insured Health Service

2017.02 – Mandatory Age Verification Mechanisms for Adult Pornographic Websites

2018.01 – Attestation Requirement on Canada Summer Jobs Program

2018.03 – Legislate Designation of Hospice/Palliative Care Services in Facilities to Exclude Medical Assistance

                 in Dying.

2019.01 – Canada to Honour its Commitment to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

  

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the delegation was unable to travel to Ottawa.  Delegates were looking forward to attending Question Period and meeting with the Ministers.  Hopefully, meetings will be rescheduled at some point in the future. 

  

With Provincial elections coming up this month call the delegates and ask where they stand on these issues.  It is also a good conversation opener for the newly elected Ministers after the election too.

  

FOR YOUR INFORMATION:  BILL THAT RECEIVED ROYAL ASSENT IN 2020

  

Bill C-13 – the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act – the response from the federal Government in “taking strong, immediate and effective action to protect Canadians and our economy from the impact of COVID-19 pandemic”.  It also guarantees “the rapid implementation and administration of measures to protect Canadians health and safety and stabilize the Canadian economy”  --  received Royal Assent March 2020

  

This legislation:

  • Provides additional assistance to families with children
  • Provides additional assistance to individuals and families with low and modest incomes
  • Introduces a Canada Emergency Response Benefit
  • Introduces a pause of repayments of Canada Student Loans
  • Helps businesses keep workers
  • Helps protect seniors’ retirement savings from the impact of volatile market conditions
  • Supports provinces and territories with a COVID-19 Response Fund
  • Ensures availability of drugs and medical devices
  • Supports Canadian businesses through the Business Development Bank of Canada
  • Supports Canadian businesses through Export Development Canada
  • Support the agriculture and agri-food sector 
  • supports the mortgage and agri-food sector
  • Supports the mortgage financing market in Canada
  • Protects Canadians from the spread of COVID-19
  • Provides the minister of finance with flexibility\supports the protection of Canadians’ savings.

  

Bill C-13 can be read in its entirety at parl.ca/LegisInfo

  

As Betty Colaneri so aptly said this is one piece of Legislation that all members will agree deserved to receive royal assent so quickly.

  

Words from Pope Francis, “The worldwide coronavirus pandemic is not God’s judgment on humanity, but God’s call on people to judge what is most important to them and resolve to act accordingly from now on.”

  

Sending many blessings and prayers that you and your families stay healthy and safe through this pandemic.  Remember there is strength in prayer. 

  

  

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Legislation Communiqué #2 - January 2020  

Shirley Lamoureux, Provincial Legislation Chairperson

      

In Betty Colaneri’s Communique #5 she advised that two resolutions that were brought to the floor of the National Convention and adopted. 

  

  1. Resolution 2019.02 Canadian Support for the United Nations Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons:

Action Plan: 

  1.  Hold a speaker presentation to inform members of the necessity of banning nuclear weapons and of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
  2. Provide a list of websites and printed materials to members to increase knowledge of the hazards of nuclear warfare
  3. Write letters to the Prime Minister and local members of Parliament indicating support of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
  4. Monitor the federal government’s response to this resolution.

  

  1.  Resolution 2018.03Framework for Palliative Caresince the Federal election is over we should be asking what they are going to do to expedite the Framework on Palliative Care in Canada and the office of Palliative Care.

  

The framework is available at https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/health-care-system/reports-publications/palliative-care/framework-palliative-care-canada.html#exec. Visit https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/palliative-care.html for further information from the office for palliative care. 

  

SASKATCHEWAN PROVINCIAL LAW CHANGES:

  

          DISTRACTED DRIVING LAWS (starting February 1, 2020):

  • First offence - $580 (from $280) and 4 demerit points
  • Second offence (within the same year) - $1,400 and 4 demerit points and an immediate week-long vehicle seizure.
  • Third offence (within the same year) - $2,100

  

CHANGES TO FEDERAL CARBON TAX REBATES (2020 rebates which must be claimed on the 2019 tax returns):

  • Single adult or first adult in a couple - $405
  • Second adult in a couple or first child of a single parent - $202
  • Each child under 18: $101
  • Baseline amount for a family  of four - $809

  

FEDERAL LAW CHANGES:

  

  • FEDERAL TAXESthe basic amount (most) Canadians can earn tax-free is increased as of January 1st, 2020 to $13,229 (this increase is being phased in over 4 years until it reaches $15,00 in 2023).  For Canadians in the lower income brackets, the changes could result in tax savings of up to $140 in 2020.  For those earning over $150,473 annually, those savings will be clawed back or not offered at all.

  

  • EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE PREMIUMS – (starting January 1, 2020) premiums for individual workers and employees will slightly decrease.  The maximum annual EI contribution for a worker will fall by $3.86 to $856.36 and the employers’ maximum contribution will fall $5.41 to $1,198.90 per employee.

  

Reminder from Provincial President, Chantal Devine, that the deadline for completing the on-line survey on expanding assisted suicide/euthanasia laws is January 27, 2020. Chantal has also provided a guide to completing this survey for our convenience in an email sent to the Diocesan Presidents for circulation.  If you wish your voice to be heard before these changes to the current MAID laws become law this survey must be completed now. (Deadline now past.)

  

Follow-up.  Conscience protection legislation has been passed in Manitoba and has been introduced in Alberta and being considered by legislature and now working to see a similar bill passed in Saskatchewan.  Write a letter to the Saskatchewan Ministers supporting freedom of conscience for doctors and other medical practitioners in performing MAID.  A sample letter  can be found at: www.canadiansforconscience.ca/saskatchewan 

  

  

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Legislation Communiqué #1 - June 2019  

Shirley Lamoureux, Provincial Legislation Chairperson

  

Greetings to my Sisters in the League.

  

I am pleased to have been accepted to sit for the next two years on the Provincial Executive and look forward to my position as chairperson of legislation.  Having spent 20 years working in the field of law and more specifically as a paralegal for the Legal Services Society of British Columbia I know I will find this both a challenge and a rewarding experience.

  

Legislation as defined by Merriam-Webster:

Legislation (or “statutory law”) is law which has been enacted by a legislature

or other governing body or the process of making it…..whether a given bill will

be proposed and is generally a matter of the legislative priorities of government.

It refers to the preparation and enactment of laws by a legislative body through

its lawmaking process.  The legislative process includes evaluating, amending,

and voting on proposed laws, and is concerned with the words used in the bill

to communicate the values, judgments, and purposes of the proposal.

  

I will ensure that any proposed bylaws that are of concern to the CWL will be brought forward to you as expeditiously as I receive memos or communiques from Betty Colaneri, the National Chairperson of Legislation.

  

May our Lord continue to guide us in our work in CWL for God and our beautiful country of Canada.

  

  

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Previous Communiqués  

  

Legislation Communiqué #2 - July 2017

Legislation Communiqué #1 - July 2017

  


    

Legislation Communiqué #2 - October 2017  

Susan Melchiorre, Provincial Legislation Chairperson

  

Four resolutions were adopted at the 2017 annual national convention in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, with two falling under the legislation standing committee:

  

The action plan for Resolution 2017.03 Zero-Rated Status Under the Goods and Services Tax Provisions of the Excise Tax Act for Child Safety Products asks members to write letters to the prime minister and minister of finance, with copies to local members of parliament (MPs), requesting the removal of the federal portion of tax from child safety products.  Encourage councils to: invite a guest speaker to educate members on the requirements of child safety products; hold fundraisers to purchase safety products for those in need; study the product list in the Canada Safety Act and ascertain if any other products should be listed; and educate members, parish communities and the public on the provincial rebate for child safety products. 

  

The action plan for Resolution 2017.04 Protection from Coercion of Conscience for Healthcare Professionals asks members to write to the prime minister and attorney general, with copies to local MPs, urging them to make it an offence under the Criminal Code for healthcare professionals to be coerced into performing or referring patients for procedures that are in opposition to their conscience. Councils are also encouraged to educate members and the community on the importance of healthcare professionals’ right of conscience and find ways to support healthcare workers who will not perform procedures that are in opposition to their conscience. 

  

 Motions

  

Three motions presented by legislation were carried at the 2017 national convention. All the motions were on the passage of Bill C16 regarding Gender Identity and Gender Expression.

  

Palliative Care Petition

  

The 2017 League petition, requesting the federal government to specifically identify hospice palliative care as a defined medical service covered under the Canada Health Act, was distributed across Canada this spring. Completed petitions with a total of 32,741 signatures were delivered to Member of Parliament Cathy McLeod (Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo). The petition will be presented in the House of Commons this fall. Due to the impressive number of signatures received, Cathy McLeod is considering the viability of developing a private members’ bill. Thank you to the councils and members for gathering the signatures. This one gesture in legislation demonstrates how we should never be afraid to raise our voices for all that is good. Members can and will change the world!!

  

Currently there are a few legislation bills in the making at the federal level that are of concern to many tax payers.  The taxation changes to small businesses that will greatly affect their income, introduction of a carbon tax, the consideration of taxation on employee discounts and the act to legalize the sale and use of marijuana.  We will have to wait to see just what occurs with these legislation proposals. 

    

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Legislation Communiqué #1 - July 2017  

Susan Melchiorre, Provincial Legislation Chairperson

   

With both the Canadian Parliament and the Saskatchewan Legislature on summer recess, politicians will be in their constituencies for the summer.  If you have issues, questions, or concerns, now is the best time to get a one-on-one with them. You will also run into them at your local fairs, parades and any other event going on in your community where crowds gather.  They try to make themselves visible and available to their constituents. So, try to have a conversation with your representative.

  

Usually your civic leaders -  mayors, councillors and reeves – can also be seen at these activities. Be familiar with the bylaws and budgets your councils want to change or add.

  

There is usually a scramble to get bills passed before summer recess.  Here are a few that passed in Parliament:

  

  • C-6 – dual citizens convicted of serious crimes such as terrorism will no longer have their Canadian citizenship revoked. Also applying for citizenship has become easier. Applicant must now reside in Canada 3 out of 5 years rather than the previous 4 out of 6.
  • C-16 – the phrase “gender identity or expression” is added to the Criminal Code and Human rights Act.
  • C-4– restores rules around certification and decertification of unions

  

Before the house at dissolution were bills that may strike down the Indian Act registration rules. The bill seeks to eliminate sex-based status registration and another to make the words to O Canada gender neutral.

  

Familiarize yourself  with your governments’ activities.  Listen to the news, read newspapers or watch TV.  Also most news outlets have a website.  Hansard is the publication of all proceedings that go on in parliament of the legislature.  These can also be found on your specific government website.   

    

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