Contest aims to turn Northwest ideas into Canadian law

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP hears pitches from Terrace residents

Terrace residents got an opportunity to pitch NDP MP Nathan Cullen their ideas for a Private Member’s Bill during a town hall discussion last Wednesday.

A new contest proposed by the Skeena-Bulkley Valley representative called ‘Create Your Canada’ could see ideas tapped directly from northwest residents converted into Canadian law. All that’s required to be submitted is the bare bones of a proposal.

“Then a volunteer committee picks a winner, and that winner we then take and transform it into a law, using the drafters in Parliament,” said Cullen at the town hall meeting at the Best Western Terrace Inn on May 16. “Then I fly the winner to Ottawa to watch their idea, now as a law, be introduced for debate in Parliament.”

This is the second time the contest was held. During its first run in 2009, the contest took submissions from high school students in an effort to get them more involved in the legislative process. Now, after close to a decade, the contest is open to all members of the public to submit.

“Three young women out of Smithers ended up banning asbestos exports out of Canada, which was amazing,” Cullen said of the announced winners in 2009. “They really shifted federal policy that has been in place for a hundred years.”

There are some restrictions on what can be submitted, however. The idea must fall under federal jurisdiction, be constitutional, and cannot cost money to implement.

“You have to figure out what you can effect through federal law. Sidewalks and dogs barking at night? Not so much. But fisheries, First Nations, climate change, the economy… big, important questions, you can.”

Around 20 people crowded into the room with Cullen and presented their ideas, which varied from banning bankruptcy bonuses for executives of failing companies, to streamlining the immigration process so experienced doctors can begin their practice in Terrace without having to go back to school.

“The voices of Canadians come with such sincerity and no partisanship,” Cullen explained. “They aren’t trying to win elections, they just have ideas about how their country works and how to make it better.”

With the deadline falling on June 29, there is limited time to submit for the private bill presentation in the fall.

To enter the Create Your Canada competition, you can email your submission to nathan.cullen.c1@parl.gc.ca. You can also mail your submission to Cullen’s Smithers constituency office at PO Box 4919, Smithers BC V0J 2N0.


 


brittany@terracestandard.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

Four air ambulance flights out of Terrace delayed or cancelled

Pandemic precautions caused nighttime closure of service station providing weather data to pilots

Skeena Resources, Tahltan prez excited by purchase of Eskay Creek

Skeena gets full control of mine, Barrick gets 12 per cent of Skeena and a one per cent royalty

UPDATE: missing 12-year-old Terrace boy found safe

Was reported missing on Southside around 10 p.m. July 9

Terrace conservation officers relocate Spirit bear

Bear roamed Kitsumkalum Valley north of Terrace for many years

QUIZ: Are you ready for a summer road trip?

How much do you really know about roads, motor vehicles and car culture? Take this quiz to find out.

Genetic detectives begin work to trace spread of COVID-19 in Canada

The kinds of genetic technology being used for this project did not exist when SARS hit Canada in 2003

Sports fishers protest Fraser River Chinook closures

Public Fishery Alliance wants hatchery fish open for harvest

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

Northern B.C. First Nations call for reversal of grizzly bear hunting ban

Growing grizzly populations have led to fewer ungulates and increased fear of attacks says Chad Day

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

Most Read