Statement made on 29 September 2009 by Senator Sharon Carstairs (retired)
Hon. Sharon Carstairs:
Honourable senators, I want to put a few words on the Order Paper today with respect to this bill. If the Honourable Deputy Leader wishes to adjourn the matter, of course, the item is in the name of Senator Dickson and I am prepared to leave it there.
Bill S-223 was first introduced to this chamber by former Senator Phalen. Shortly after the introduction of that bill, he retired. The bill had been introduced at an earlier time, and he had hoped that, this time, it would make much further progress. Shortly after Senator Phalen's retirement, I was approached by the deputy leader, who said that the Minister of Immigration was interested in this bill, and asked if I would be willing to consider amendments.
I had meetings with the staff of the Minister of Immigration and Citizenship, and amendments were put forward. This process was carried out in an extremely cooperative and friendly manner. The result is that a group of amendments to this bill has now been presented to me and, frankly, the amendments have met with my approval. I think we can proceed with this bill, if it is agreeable with the Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate, in order that this bill be dealt with in committee, and the amendments brought forward at that particular point in time.
Honourable senators, I do not think there is any question that there is interest on both sides of this chamber in ensuring that trafficking is not permitted in this country, and that anything that can prevent the most egregious aspects of trafficking should be dealt with, and dealt with as quickly as possible.
With those few words and my thanks to the Deputy Leader of the Government for his cooperation in this matter, I conclude my remarks.