Speaker : Mr. Julian
Context : Introduction of Private Members' Bills
Bill C-354. Introduction and first reading
Mr. Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-354, An Act to amend the Federal Courts Act (international promotion and protection of human rights).
He said: Mr. Speaker, I should note at the outset that this very innovative bill was developed in close cooperation with Nick Milanovich, who is a research professor at the department of law of Carleton University, and Mark Rowlinson, who is the counsel for the United Steelworkers. Mr. Milanovich's daughter Edie and mother Irene are in the galleries today.
The bill ensures corporate accountability for Canadian firms operating abroad. It broadens the mandate of the federal court so that it protects foreign citizens against rights violations committed by corporations operating outside of Canada. This act will hold violators accountable for gross human rights abuses, regardless of where they take place, and it would allow law suits in Canada for a host of universal human rights violations.
Essentially, this provides legal protection for those in other countries who are the victims of gross human rights violations. It is supported by the Canadian Association of Labour Lawyers. I hope that this innovative bill, which replicates what happens in the United States under the Alien Tort Claims Act, will be receiving the support of Parliament.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)