Domestic Events (Oct 2015 and Onwards)

Domestic Timeline (Oct 2015 and Onwards)

2017

October

  • After a long history of concern over potential for conflict-of-interest between the B.C. salmon farming industry and the B.C. governments Animal Health Centre, the NDP government announces an investigation into provincial salmon aquaculture research.
  • The federal  Environment Commissioner Julie Gelfand found that “The federal government is not prepared to deal with the impacts of climate change”.  Only five of the 19 departments she looked at had even figured out where the risks are from climate change, let alone how best to deal with them. It means that science-based evidence is not being applied as the policy base.

September

  • The government announces the appointment of Dr. Mona Nemer as Chief Science Advisor for Canada.

June

  • The Federal Science Library creates a new web portal that allows Canadians and researchers everywhere to search multiple government science library collections and repositories from a single place.
  • The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada negotiated a precedent setting collective agreement that enshrines scientists’ right to speak publicly about science and research.

April

  • The Science Minister-appointed panel files a final report recommending an increase in federal annual funding for fundamental science research for $4.8 billion and to create an independent National Advisory Council on Research and Innovation.

March

  • The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada negotiated a precedent setting collective agreement that enshrines scientists’ right to speak publicly about science and research.

February

  • Using an analysis of Twitter feeds, it turns out that science was an important factor in the 2015 federal election.

2016

June

April

  •  In its first budget, the liberal government increased total funding for research by $141 million in 2016-2017. While welcomed, it falls short of bringing Canada’s spending on research in line with that of other highly developed countries. (ME 2016-05-18)
  • Introduced on June 18th, 2015 by Elizabeth May, Member of Parliament and Leader of the Green Party of Canada, Bill C-259: An Act to amend the Access to Information Act (scientific research), also known as the Open Science Act, is now undergoing first reading in the House of Commons. This bill will require all federal departments to make all publicly funded scientific research available to Canadians on their websites. (WL 04/14/2016)
  • The government is still censoring access of to a wide range of websites in certain departments, according to the union of government scientists (PIPSC).

2015

November

  • Kirsty Duncan appointed Minister of Science
  • Navdeep Bains appointed Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
  • The new Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Navdeep Bains, states that scientists will be unmuzzled and treated with respect
  • The Liberal government has announced that it will reinstate the mandatory long-form census in 2016.
  • The Liberal Party of Canada, lead by Mr. Justin Trudeau, wins a majority in the federal elections. The new government of Canada brings hope that public science and public knowledge will once again be supported.

October

  • Message and media control have become deeply embedded in the government, and Mr. Trudeau needs to send a clear and forceful signal to bureaucrats that their days of interfering with the flow of information to the public are over.
  • CAUT sponsors a national campaign campaign “Get Science Right” to speak out against muzzling of scientists.
  • Four Canadian scientists were interviewed by VICE on what they think about the Liberal victory and how the new government can go about improving science in Canada.
  • Message and  media control have become deeply embedded in the government, and Mr. Trudeau, the prime-minister-designate, needs to send a clear and forceful signal to bureaucrats that their days of interfering with the flow of information to the public are over.