Justin Trudeau’s Limited Time Raises Concerns on Progress
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is facing mounting pressure to fulfill a series of election promises before time runs out. With approximately 200 parliamentary sitting days left before the next election, there are several pledges that Trudeau’s government has yet to fulfill. Concerns have been raised over the progress made on key issues such as online safety, copyright protection, and animal rights.
One of the promises yet to be enacted upon is the online safety bill, which aims to combat hate speech and abuse on the internet. Trudeau had instructed former heritage minister Pablo Rodriguez to introduce the bill as soon as possible in his 2021 mandate letter, but it has yet to be introduced.
The government has also not made progress on modernizing the Copyright Act to protect artists and writers from the threats posed by artificial intelligence. Additionally, a vow to ban the transport of live horses to Japan for horse-meat products remains unfulfilled.
Experts warn that time is running out for the government to fulfill its promises, with approximately 220 parliamentary sitting days left unless they extend into their breaks. Former head of the public service, Michael Wernick, highlighted the diminishing number of days available for legislative action, policy decisions, and consultations.
Trudeau’s government sent mandate letters to each cabinet minister after the 2021 election, outlining their commitments. However, several promises have yet to be realized. For example, the introduction of Canada’s first-ever Aquaculture Act, the modernization of the Ocean’s Act to address climate change effects on marine life, and the phase-out of salmon fish farms in British Columbia’s coastal waters.
In response to mounting pressure, the government has unveiled plans to focus on housing shortages and the high cost of groceries. Reforms to the Competition Act, strengthening the Competition Bureau’s investigative powers, will be a legislative priority. However, several bills promised by the Liberals, including cybersecurity legislation and legislation to protect animals in captivity, have not made progress in Parliament.
The Conservative Party has criticized Trudeau for the slow progress on fulfilling promises and has pledged to use parliamentary tools to hold the government accountable. The NDP is also pressuring the government to fulfill its pledges, including the creation of a national universal pharmacare program.
As time ticks away before the next election, Trudeau’s government faces increasing scrutiny over its ability to deliver on campaign promises. Critics argue that progress has been slow on key issues such as online safety, copyright protection, animal rights, and environmental commitments. The government must act swiftly to achieve its goals and address the concerns of Canadians.