The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

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The Gender 8

Posted on April 27, 2010

Just a brief observation from the G8 sessions today on food security and child and maternal health. CIDA minister Bev Oda and her colleagues were kind enough to include me in many of the events today – something that provided me a ringside seat. It was only as the morning session was underway that I noticed the makeup of the large conference table seating all the development ministers from the G8 countries. Every single one was male. Except for Canada, that is. It was striking to witness Bev Oda and CIDA president Margaret Biggs seated at the head of the table and ably leading the discussions dominated by men. All this reminded me once again what a special place CIDA has held in the…

A Clear Answer But A Present Danger

Posted on April 27, 2010

HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA – As I arrived at the G8 Development Ministers summit here today, protestors were still making their sentiments felt from a small park across from the hotel. It was an eclectic group, comprised of critics for financial transactions, trade reform, and workers rights organizations. One group apparently came to life later in the afternoon after the government’s parliamentary secretary for International Development rose during Question Period and stated firmly that his government would in no way fund abortions in its G8 child and maternal health initiative as part of its CIDA funding. This marked the first time the Harper Conservatives had disclosed that abortion was excluded. By the time news of that pronouncement reached the protestors here in Halifax it pumped…


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