November 9, 2021
Dear friends and neighbors,
I am truly humbled to have been appointed Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard by Prime Minister Trudeau! Among the many challenges inherent in managing fisheries, ocean conservation, and marine safety, I will work to ensure DFO prioritizes restoring waterways and coastal ecosystems to regenerate aquatic diversity and abundance. Canada, blessed with by far the longest coastline in the world, can and should contribute measurable net climate emission reductions through an ambitious ‘blue carbon’ strategy to sequester carbon through restoration.
I will miss the challenges of stewarding the digital transformation of government operations and service to citizens as Minister of Digital Government. However, a new strategic digital framework and central Chief Information Officer are now in place, and the next steps can be ably managed within Treasury Board. Watch for improvements in the way government interfaces with you, and horizontally across departments.
The past two weeks have been busy with briefings on the many DFO issues, opportunities and decisions. A full day spent touring the Western Region Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) facilities in Victoria, including a helicopter tour with the Region’s Incident Commander, highlighted the CCG’s very effective leadership role responding to the Zim Kingston container ship incident. The loss of so many shipping containers overboard in storm conditions poses real concerns which are being closely monitored. However, the effective coordination and cooperation effort, plus a range of new resources provided by our government’s Oceans Protection Plan (a new nearby Search and Rescue base plus two large fireboat tugs for example), helped reduce the fire’s danger to people, and limited its damage onboard and to the environment.
Thank you for your patience as I work to catch up – and keep up – with your and others’ correspondence and inquiries. My staff have been very busy helping constituents, and I want to congratulate the office team for their recent success in helping an Afghani family find refuge in Canada!
The Poppy turns 100!
100 years ago, Canadians began wearing a poppy to honour and remember those who lost their lives in service to Canada, and to raise funds to support and assist veterans.
For this centenary, the Royal Canadian Legion produced a short video about the history of “The Poppy” you might enjoy: https://youtu.be/3riQYKMenUA
Did you know that you can also download a Digital Poppy through www.MyPoppy.ca? All funds raised will further support Canada’s veterans.
More than 83 percent of eligible Canadians are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, but the fight against the virus continues. On October 30th Transport Minister Omar Alghabra confirmed that all air travellers over 12, as well as passengers on VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer trains, will need to show proof of vaccination to travel.
Special accommodations are available for travel to and from designated remote communities, and during a short transition period until November 29th travellers not yet fully vaccinated must show a negative COVID-19 molecular test. Further details can be found here.
Standardized Proof of Vaccine
As announced on October 21st , the federal government has worked closely with provinces, territories and international bodies to develop a national, standardized proof of vaccination certificate to facilitate international and domestic travel. This is a project I helped shape in my previous role as Minister of Digital Government, so I am pleased that BC has now signed on, too!
On November 3rd, the Prime Minister concluded his visit to the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, United Kingdom. There, he announced Canada’s plans to support the global phase-out of thermal coal and called on other countries to adopt carbon pricing, with the goal of ensuring 60% of global emissions are covered by a price on pollution in 2030. Through targeted investments, Canada will assist developing countries transition to a net-zero future, fight global biodiversity loss, and conserve the world’s lands and oceans.
We can be proud that Canada is the first major oil-producing country moving to “cap and cut” emissions to ensure our oil and gas sector achieves net zero emissions by 2050. At COP26 our message was ambitious and clear - we must work with global partners to accelerate the climate transition.
Watch Prime Minister Trudeau’s address at COP-26 here
In case you missed it:
- Our government recently announced updated COVID-19 economic recovery programs targeting support to the hardest-hit industries and businesses while recognizing that broad-based assistance is no longer needed.
- Please consider providing your feedback on the Jericho Lands planning concept, to help shape this very significant local land development! Visit shapeyourcity.ca/jericho-lands until November 14th to find out more.
- Do you know a young person who is keen to know more about public policy and politics in Canada? I invite Vancouver Quadra youth between 13 and 24 to apply to join my non-partisan Constituency Youth Council. For details, visit www.joycemurray.ca
- Check out TransLink’s first-ever sweepstakes for riders. The recently-launched TransLink “Tap In to Win” Sweepstakes will run for five months to thank customers, help boost economic recovery in the region and rebuild transit ridership. Prizes include a range of travel and transportation-related goodies from Destination Vancouver, Rad Power Bikes, BC Ferries and YVR.
I wish you a meaningful Remembrance Day on November 11th as we pause to reflect on the service and sacrifice, past and ongoing, offered by those in uniform.
The Hon. Joyce Murray, P.C., M.P.
Member of Parliament for Vancouver Quadra