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Greens Have A Full Agenda for the Legislature

by Josh O'Donnell

May 21, 2020

Greens Have A Full Agenda for the Legislature

FREDERICTON – “While the government says it only has a few bills it wants to pass when we resume the spring Legislative session, the Greens have a full agenda,” says Green Party leader and MLA for Fredericton-South, David Coon.

The Green Caucus has three bills awaiting second reading and four motions awaiting debate:

Bill 7: Ensure equitable access to timber markets for private woodlot owners and ban Glyphosate spraying on Crown Lands.
Bill 31: Improve the social assistance system to meet the needs of recipients.
Bill 35: Ban the practice of conversion therapy in New Brunswick.

Motion 37: Make documents public related to the proposed healthcare reform.
Motion 38: Send healthcare reform to an all-party legislative committee.
Motion 39: Increase social assistance rates and pilot a Guaranteed Livable Income.
Motion 40: Give the Department of Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries the mandate for food sovereignty and food security and change the department’s name to reflect that mandate.  

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues on, the Green Caucus has been working on additional three bills and four debatable motions to ensure that New Brunswick and New Brunswickers can emerge from this crisis stronger than ever.  These bills will be tabled over the proposed 4 weeks of the spring session. 

Bill: Strengthen the local food system.
Bill: Ban replacement workers during strikes.
Bill: Amend the Education Act to include teaching Indigenous languages.

Motion: Urge government to support building retrofits and embrace renewable energy.
Motion: Urge government to procure 10% of its goods and services locally.
Motion: Prohibit the provision of grants and loans to companies that shelter their income in tax havens.
Motion: Prohibit cross-ownership of media and non-media businesses

While the Legislature will hold all sittings in person, the Green caucus has advocated for the hybrid system adopted by the House of Commons that uses videoconferencing in combination with members in the House, to conduct legislative business.

“We need to adopt strategies and technology that allow MLAs to do our legislative work, whether in person at the Legislature or online,” said Mitton. “We have seen government business conducted online in Ottawa and elsewhere, so we know it can be done. We need to put this in place so that the Legislative Assembly can do as much work as possible, even during a pandemic.”

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