Victoria MPs tackle government’s ‘terror bill’

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s controversial terror bill is to be analyzed by an expert panel

  • Feb. 26, 2015 5:00 a.m.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s controversial terror bill is to be analyzed by an expert panel and the public during a forum today (Feb. 27).

Hosted by New Democrat Victoria MPs Randall Garrison and Murray Rankin, the forum will look at the way the bill affects Canadians.

“To me, this bill is all wrong. We should all be working together,” said Rankin.

Held at the First Metropolitan United Church from 7 to 8:30 p.m., the panel will discuss how the bill affects Canadians.

More than 150 people are expected to attend the forum.

“It’s pretty amazing, this will be one of the largest forums we’ve had,” said Rankin.

Other experts include York University security and intelligence expert Reg Whitaker and University of Victoria social justice instructor Laurel Collins.

The anti-terror bill includes more power for Canadian custom officers. The bill would allow custom officers to confiscate anything broadly defined as “terrorist propaganda.” This includes searching computers at the border if deemed “suspicious.”

“The government is ramming this through at break neck speed because most people who say it’s a good idea haven’t read the bill and they understand the faster they get it through the less criticism that will reach the public,” said Whitaker.

Other things the public may not know is the word terrorist would also include people who protest things such as treaty rights, land rights and natural resources, or known as an “eco-terroist.”

“Some of the things in the bill are really scary and impact social movement and protest,” said Collins.

First Metropolitan United Church is located at 932 Balmoral Rd.

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