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Photos for March 2016

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IMG_0795Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau pose with copies of the new Liberal government’s first budget before tabling it in the House of Commons March 22. Morneau said the government’s plan “will recapture the hope and optimism for the future that existed in previous generations, and put it to work for the next.” Morneau added, “Real change is not just about today or tomorrow. It is about revitalizing the economy in the years and decades to come, so that it works for the middle class and helps those working hard to join it.”

IMG_0801Finance Minister Bill Morneau says the new Liberal government’s budget plan that he tabled in the House of Commons March 22 is a call to action. “It calls on each and every one of us to take this moment in history and make it ours,” he said. “Our plan is about revitalizing the economy and providing support for Canadian families.” Morneau said, “We know that the challenges we face will not be solved overnight, or by a single budget, but we are taking important steps towards renewing the optimism that comes with knowing we can leave behind a better life for our kids and grandkids.”

IMG_1070Rona Ambrose, the Leader of the Official Opposition and Interim Leader of the Conservative Party, says Budget 2016 “is a nightmare scenario for taxpayers who will be forced to pick up the tab for today’s Liberal spending spree.” The budget, tabled in the House of Commons March 22 “puts taxpayers on the hook for out of control Liberal spending that will lead to more waste and mismanagement,” she said. The government is projecting a deficit of at least $18.4 billion in 2017, almost five times higher than forecast last fall and considerably over the $10-billion limit that was promised during the election campaign.

IMG_0884“The government missed an opportunity today to really deliver change,” said NDP Leader Tom Mulcair following the tabling of the Liberal Government’s first budget March 22. Canadians had high expectations for the budget, but what they got instead were missed opportunities to tackle inequality and backtracking on key commitments, he said. “They shortchanged First Nations education by $230 million and First Nations child welfare by $130 million in the first year alone. Added Mulcair, “Families across Canada are worried about their jobs and struggling to make ends meet – but today’s budget told them they would have to wait longer for help.”

bellegardePerry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, says the Liberal government’s first budget, tabled in the House of Commons March 22 “is a significant step in closing the gap in the quality of life between First Nations peoples and Canadians and beginning the process of reconciliation.” Bellegarde said the budget “begins to address decades of under-funding and neglect, which have perpetuated a growing gap in the quality of life between First Nations and other Canadians.” The budget, he said, “invests in important priorities for First Nations and all Canadians.” Investments in housing, clean water, education, and child welfare, said Bellegarde “will bring long-needed relief for those living in third world conditions, and build a stronger economy for everyone.”

IMG_1160Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson presents the key to the City of Ottawa to Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin of the Supreme Court of Canada at a ceremony at City Hall March 22. McLachlin is Canada’s longest-serving chief justice and the first woman to hold the position.

mclachlin2Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin of the Supreme Court of Canada was honored at a ceremony at City Hall March 22 by a presentation of the key to the City of Ottawa from Mayor Jim Watson. McLachlin is Canada’s longest-serving chief justice and the first woman to hold the position.

coffin_tonemapped2Bishop Peter Coffin, seen here at a service at Christ Church Cathedral last May, is to be succeeded by the Ven. Nigel Shaw as Bishop of the Anglican Military Ordinariate. Shaw, the first to be elected to the position, is to be ordained to the episcopate on May 28 at Christ Church, the cathedral of the Anglican Military Ordinariate of the Canadian Forces.

Morneau2Finance Minister Bill Morneau hands down the new Liberal government’s first budget March 22 and is projecting a deficit of at least $18.4 billion in 2017. That’s almost five times his forecast last fall and considerably over the $10-billion limit that was promised during the election campaign. Morneau blames the weak economy on the previous Conservative government. But Interim Conservative Leader Rona Ambrose blames the soaring deficit on “uncontrolled, permanent, new spending.”

IMG_5439Justice Murray Sinclair, who headed the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, says he is approaching his appointment to the Senate “with hope for the future, and remain committed to reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous people.” Sinclair, seen here last June with his granddaughter Sarah Fontaine-Sinclair, was one of seven Canadians appointed as Senators by the Liberal government March 18. In a statement, Sinclair said he believes “the higher calling of public service is a sacred honour and it is with great humility that I accept this recommendation to be appointed.” The Conservative Opposition dismissed the new appointments as nothing more than “fresh paint on a tired, undemocratic process.”

sinclairJustice Murray Sinclair, who headed the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, says he is approaching his appointment to the Senate “with hope for the future, and remain committed to reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous people.” Sinclair was one of seven Canadians appointed as Senators by the Liberal government March 18. In a statement, Sinclair said he believes “the higher calling of public service is a sacred honour and it is with great humility that I accept this recommendation to be appointed.” The Conservative Opposition dismissed the new appointments as nothing more than “fresh paint on a tired, undemocratic process.”

arbour4Former Supreme Court of Canada Justice Louise Arbour was presented with the 2016 Pearson Peace Medal by Governor General David Johnston at a ceremony at Rideau Hall March 17. The award honours outstanding Canadian achievements in the field of international service and understanding. The United Nations Association in Canada (UNA-Canada) announced Arbour, who was High Commissioner for Human Rights from 2004 to 2008, as the recipient of its award on March 14.

trudeau6Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announces that an exceptional Canadian woman will be featured on the next new bank note, expected to be in circulation in 2018. “Today, on International Women’s Day, the Bank of Canada is taking the first step, launching public consultations to select an iconic Canadian woman on this new bill,” said Trudeau March 8, backed by women MPs from the Liberal caucus and his wife, Sophie. Finance Minister Bill Morneau, right, said all Canadians, female and male, may nominate an iconic women using the form on the Bank of Canada’s website (http://www.bankofcanada.ca/banknoteable/)

trudeau3Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announces that an exceptional Canadian woman will be featured on the next new bank note, expected to be in circulation in 2018. “Today, on International Women’s Day, the Bank of Canada is taking the first step, launching public consultations to select an iconic Canadian woman on this new bill,” said Trudeau March 8.

hazelHazel McCallion, former long-time mayor of Mississauga and a devout Anglican, poses with women Liberal MPs beside a model of a one-dollar circulation coin released by the Royal Canadian Mint. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau unveiled the coin on International Women’s Day March 8. It celebrates the 100th anniversary of Canadian women’s right to vote.

hazel4

Hazel McCallion, former long-time mayor of Mississauga and a devout Anglican, was special guest at the International Day of Women event on Parliament Hill March 8. It was there that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that an exceptional Canadian woman will be featured on the next new bank note, expected to be in circulation in 2018.

hazel2Hazel McCallion, former long-time mayor of Mississauga and a devout Anglican, was special guest at the International Day of Women event on Parliament Hill March 8. It was there that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that an exceptional Canadian woman will be featured on the next new bank note, expected to be in circulation in 2018.

sophie2Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau, wife of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, joined with her husband and women MPs from the Liberal caucus March 8 at a celebration on Parliament Hill marking International Women’s Day. The Prime Minister announced that an exceptional Canadian woman would be featured on the next new bank note, expected to be in circulation in 2018.

harper-obamaU.S. President Barack Obama, seen here with Prime Minister Stephen Harper on his first visit to Canada, in Feb. 2009, is to speak to Parliament in June. Nearing the end of his term, Obama will be part of the so-called “Three Amigos” summit with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto.

IMG_8499International Development Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau has announced new funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to increase access to maternal, newborn and reproductive health services in developing countries. More than $76 million is destined for reproductive health initiatives and renewed support of $5 million for contraceptive supplies initiative. “Canada has long been a strong supporter of UNFPA and its work to provide women and girls with access to the sexual and reproductive health services they need,” said Bibeau in making the announcement March 7.

mcdonaldProfessor Emeritus Arthur McDonald, co-winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics, was feted at a reception on Parliament Hill March and honored by MPs when he attended Question Period in the House of Commons. McDonald shares his award with his colleague Takaaki Kajita of Japan. It represents a global recognition of their groundbreaking scientific experiments to demonstrate that neutrinos have mass.

IMG_0395-2Legendary Inuk folk and gospel singer, Etulu Aningmiuq, sings on Parliament Hill on World Suicide Prevention Day last September. Known for his folk songs and Inuktitut-language ballads, Aningmiuq died in Iqaluit Feb. 15 after a short illness at age 69.

collins

Cardinal Thomas Collins, the Archbishop of Toronto, says, “It is never justified for doctors to kill.” In a statement on assisted dying, made via a video March 5-6 in 225 Catholic churches in the archdiocese, Collins called on the federal government to protect the vulnerable and those who care for them. His statement was in response to a parliamentary report on medical assistance in dying released Feb. 25.  The recommendations and the thrust of the report “completely fail to be ‘patient-centered’ or to assist and support the dying and the vulnerable, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops said in a pastoral statement following the release of the report.

 

warawa
Conservative MP Mark Warawa was one of four MPs who released a dissenting report as members of the Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying Feb.25. It says the joint committee’s report would open the door to physician-assisted dying for minors and fails to provide “robust safeguards to protect vulnerable populations, particularly with mental health issues.”

IMG_8552Prime Minister Justin Trudeau defended his government’s Syrian refugee program in a CBS ’60 Minutes’ profile March 6. When asked if he was concerned about the prospect of a terrorist attack by a Syrian refugee, the PM said “Every time a tourist or an immigrant or refugee shows up in another country, there is a security risk.” He said he is more comfortable that “accepting 25,000 Syrian refugees does right by both the safety of Canadians and by the values that define us as a nation.”

IMG_1002Former Mexican president Felipe Calderón says Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump is “racist,” the New York Post reported Feb. 28. “He is acting and speaking out against immigrants that have a different skin color than he does, it is frankly racist and [he is] exploiting feelings like Hitler did in his time,” Calderón said. Trump’s discourse is “sowing hate” against the United States around the world and this is not in Washington’s interest, he said.

 

 

eggleton

Senator Art Eggleton wants the federal government to launch a basic income pilot project. He tabled a motion in the Senate Feb. 26 to encourage the government to sponsor a pilot project with one or more provinces or territories. The aim would be to “evaluate the cost and impact of implementing a national basic income program based on a negative income tax for the purpose of helping Canadians to escape poverty.” Eggleton said the time is right to test a basic income. “How we have dealt with poverty has failed. Instead of lifting people out of poverty our current programs entrap them,” he said. “We need to test a different approach.”

hiltz

Changing the Anglican Church of Canada’s marriage canon to allow for same-sex marriage is unlikely to get the needed votes from bishops at the church’s General Synod in July. But the primate, Archbishop Fred Hiltz, said there is no clear-cut division among the bishops. There are “about a third of the bishops that would clearly love to see us move, and we’ve got a third that would say no…and I think we’ve got a third that are really wrestling,” he said in a an interview for the Anglican Journal (www.anglicanjournal.com) March 3. He sees the position of he House of Bishops as “a reflection of what’s in the church at large.”

 

chapman-black

Bishop John Chapman of the diocese of Ottawa says he was one of those “mortified” that the House of Bishops is not likely get a two-thirds majority in support of revising the marriage canon to allow for same-sex couples to be married in Anglican churches in Canada. In a response to the church’s House of Bishops statement, Chapman said, “I want to extend my deep apology to all those who are feeling discouraged, angry, betrayed, and hurt. I especially want to apologize to the LGTBQ community.” The bishops said many “did our very best to ensure that your voice was heard, understood, respected, and honoured at the recent House meeting. We were unsuccessful, and for that I am so sorry!”

 

musical rideThe RCMP Musical Ride will be heading to Britain this spring to perform at Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th birthday celebration at the Royal Windsor Horse Show. The birthday celebration will take ownership of the horse show’s main arena and grandstand seating during the four evenings of the celebrations from May 11-14.

 

IMG_9505A Snowy Owl rests on a fence post in a farmer’s field near Ottawa Feb. 29.