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The Canada-Honduras trade agreement: A stain on Canada

Photo: media coop

On October 1, 2014, Canada legally implemented a Free Trade Agreement with Honduras.

The Conservative government was joined in the House of Commons by the Liberal Party in supporting this measure. The NDP was the only official party in Parliament to oppose it.

In keeping with our long-standing approach, New Democrats oppose signing trade agreements with countries who commit widespread human rights abuses, practice anti-democratic behaviour and foster political violence. We believe that nations who do so should not be rewarded with preferential economic benefits. Rather, they should be required to demonstrate a commitment to meet international norms and make progress toward them as a pre-condition to receiving such advantages.

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Live-in caregivers fight against proposals to remove their right to permanent residency

Photo: flickr/Jeff Nelson

On October 9, 2014, live-in caregivers and their allies held simultaneous media briefings in Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa to call for landed status upon arrival for live-in caregivers and to denounce the Conservative government's proposed changes to the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP).

These proposed changes, introduced by Immigration Minister Chris Alexander and members of his staff during closed-door consultations in July, include lifting restrictions on live-in caregivers' ability to study and work part-time, removing the live-in requirement and making it harder for live-in caregivers to get Canadian permanent residency by funnelling their applications through the "Express Entry" program.  

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October 20, 2014 |
Bill C-279 is now before a Senate Committee which is considering amendments to the proposed legislation which would essentially undo the principles the bill aims to uphold.

Closing arguments in First Nations Child Welfare case start today

Photo: flickr/John Liu

Closing arguments on the most important Indigenous children's rights case will be heard from October 20-24, 2014 at the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal in Ottawa, Ontario.

FOLLOW: Jocelyn Formsma is live-tweeting the proceedings @JossOssim

These closing arguments will be the end of a near eight-year battle for the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society (FNCFCS) and the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) against what is now known as Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (formerly Indian and Northern Affairs Canada) regarding equitable funding levels of child welfare services on reserve.

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Columnists

From Israel to ISIS: Harper's 'Orwellian' foreign policy

It's getting difficult to remember a time when the Canadian Parliament actually tried to make principled decisions regarding foreign policy and our place in the community of nations. But we should try. Perhaps a first step in returning to such a time was the decision of the NDP and Liberal Party to oppose Stephen Harper's most recent ill-considered and cynical march to war with his decision to join the bombing of Iraq.

Columnists

Who do you trust with your child care future: Mulcair or Harper?

Photo: flickr/David Robert Bliwas

All of a sudden, it looks like the battle lines in the coming federal election may be less over whether to send our warplanes to Iraq and more over whether to send our children to day care.

With their announcement this week of plans for a national child care program, the NDP has not only proposed the beginnings of a solution to a gaping social need in Canada, it has also carved out territory in which its contrast to the Harper Conservatives could not be starker. 

Like the NDP, the Conservatives are planning to take a chunk of money from the surplus accumulating in Ottawa and spend it on a big initiative related to children. 

But that's where the similarities end. 

October 15, 2014 |
The Official Opposition has developed a plan to tackle our country's childcare crisis. Affordable, universal childcare will offer real economic and social benefits to working families across Canada.

Domestic violence cases spike after immigration law amendment

Photo: flickr/Peter Huys

The October 2012 amendment to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act was designed to deter immigration fraud; however, the proposed changes had earlier alarmed stakeholders who feared that these changes could compromise the safety of immigrant women.

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Watch: Defend Our Pensions! Toronto rally

Check out this great series of videos from the October 8 Defend Our Pensions! Rally in Toronto.

The videos feature speeches from Jean-Claude Parrot, former president of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, Hassan Yussuff, president of the CLC, Herb John, president of the National Pensioners Federation, and Jo-Ann Hannah, Unifor Director of Pensions and Benefits.

Please watch all four videos here.

| October 14, 2014
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