NEWS

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Statement on Forest Fire in Fort McMurray

by Senator Betty Unger

Senator’s Statement on the Forest Fire in Fort McMurray May 4, 2016 Over the past 24 hours, we have all been gripped by the news coming out of Fort McMurray, in northern Alberta. The entire city of  80,000 people has been evacuated in the face of fire raging through a tinder dry forest. It’s the […]

Statement on National Hospice Palliative Care Week

by Senator Betty Unger

Senator’s Statement in the Senate on National Hospice Palliative Care Week May 3, 2016 “Studies and reports are good. Debates and discussions are valuable. But what Canada needs today is not another government committee on palliative care, but a government committed to palliative care.” – Senator Betty Unger Honourable senators, this week is National Hospice Palliative […]

Proposed euthanasia law dodges the difficult questions

by Senator Betty Unger

April 18, 2016 It’s beginning to look like a pattern: Dodge the difficult questions and defer them to the future. The Trudeau government has done it again with its euthanasia legislation. Deceptively named, “Medical assistance in dying” the legislation initially pulls back from the radical suggestions made by the Joint Committee on Physician Assisted Suicide, […]

Euthanasia Legislation Must Comply with Charter to Protect the Vulnerable

by Senator Betty Unger

With the Supreme Court of Canada’s (SCC) June 6 deadline looming, Parliament will soon begin debating its legislative response to the SCC’s decision on physician-assisted dying. And although personal views on this issue vary widely, all parliamentarians will be responsible to ensure that the new legislation complies with the Charter of Rights by conforming to […]

NEWS RELEASE: Safeguards for physician-assisted dying needed

by Senator Betty Unger

NEWS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Safeguards for physician-assisted dying must include access to palliative care and protection of conscience rights: Alberta Senator Betty Unger OTTAWA – February 25, 2016 – Alberta Senator Betty Unger today expressed concern that the Report of the Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying did not include appropriate safeguards.  Most notably, the […]

Palliative care must be the priority, not physician-assisted dying

by Senator Betty Unger

“Palliative care should be the priority, not physician-assisted dying. There is something terribly wrong when a government does more to guarantee that the living can die, than to ensure that the dying can live.” Last year, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the Criminal Code sections prohibiting physician-assisted suicide violate our Charter rights. After […]

Canadians should have a say in electoral reform

by Senator Betty Unger

Over ten years ago the Law Commission of Canada released a 209-page report recommending changes to our electoral system. While the Liberal government took no action at the time, numerous provinces launched their own reviews to examine the merits of electoral reform. Without exception, the proposals put forward by each province failed to be implemented. […]

C-608 – An Act respecting a National Day of the Midwife

by Senator Betty Unger

National Day of the Midwife Mr. Speaker and Honourable Colleagues, today I rise to speak about the health and well-being of pregnant women, infants and children: a topic of great importance to the Government of Canada. As you know, the primary responsibility for the administration and delivery of health care services rest with each province […]

Tribute to the Honourable Noël Kinsella

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable Senators, I rise today to pay tribute to our former Speaker of the Senate and our former colleague: the Honourable Noël Kinsella. I would like to focus on one topic – about which he had spoken several times and into which he had obviously put a great deal of thought – that being Senate […]

C-266 – An Act to Establish Pope John Paul II Day

by Senator Betty Unger

Pope John Paul II belonged to the whole world, but in a special way, he also belonged to Canadians. He came, not only as the Pope and Head of State for the Vatican, but also as a pastor, brother and humble man. Only 3 years after surviving a near fatal assassination attempt on his life […]

Senate Statement on Poland

by Senator Betty Unger

Today I rise in solidarity with Polish people everywhere, celebrating on June 4, 2014 the 25th anniversary, of the beginning of the end, of communism in Poland. In 1989, the Solidarity movement led by charismatic leader Lech Walesa and aided by four other key figures who were the spiritual and intellectual forces, won the first […]

Commemoration of the Persons Case

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable Senators, I recently had the pleasure of attending the 2013 Governor General’s Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case. This award pays tribute to a group of women from my home province of Alberta, who brought about the Persons Case, known collectively, as the Famous Five. These women truly exhibited the spirit for which […]

C-52 – Amending the Canadian Transportation Act

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable senators, I rise today to speak in support of Bill C-52, the fair rail freight service act, which proposes amendments to the Canada Transportation Act concerning rail freight service. I will first begin with some background. Bill C-52 emerged from the Rail Freight Service Review, which our Conservative government launched in 2008 to conduct […]

Canadian Nurses Foundation

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable senators, on Thursday, May 2, I was honoured to be a guest at the 2013 Nightingale Gala held by the Canadian Nurses Foundation, the CNF, at the Ottawa Convention Centre. In terms of galas, this third annual event truly qualified. From the 500-plus distinguished patrons and guests to the beautifully decorated room and the […]

Parliamentary Reform

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable senators, before we take leave of this place for the Christmas break, I wish to speak briefly on an issue that is of great importance to me, that being the irresistible cause of Senate reform. A clear majority of Canadians, when asked if they want to elect future senators, has always said “yes.” Most […]

Diamond Jubilee Medal Recipients

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable senators, I rise today to report that on September 17 it was my great pleasure to join with Alberta Lieutenant Governor Donald Ethell at Government House in Edmonton to present Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medals to 30 exceptional Canadians. It was a beautiful fall day, made all the more so by the Lieutenant […]

Tribute to the late Honourable Peter Lougheed

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable senators, I rise today to pay tribute to a great Albertan and a great Canadian: the Honourable Peter Lougheed, a former Alberta premier. The outpouring of sadness, affection and admiration we have witnessed in Alberta and across Canada since his passing earlier this month is a testament to the extraordinary accomplishments and exemplary character […]

Accidents caused by the use of mobile device headphones

by Senator Betty Unger

Honourable senators, I rise to draw your attention to a disturbing trend among young people today across North America. More and more young pedestrians, wearing headphones attached to the newest mobile devices, are becoming victims in serious train and motor vehicle accidents. Because of the rising popularity of mobile devices using headphones, the statistics are […]