Additional concerns regarding a conflict of interest were raised, as hundreds of the volunteer opportunities created by the CSSG were with WE Charity itself, conducting work for the charity. Parliamentary committees nevertheless continued to press the government on the matter. [1] This was not disclosed by either party, who had in fact stated that the family had not been paid, and had to be discovered as a result of parliamentary investigation. ", "It would be ridiculous to suggest that at the last minute, just as the vote was about to happen, that Mme. [92] In testimony delivered the same day, Rachel Wernick, the senior assistant deputy minister at Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), corroborated this claim saying that she had recommended WE Charity to administer the program, citing its far-reaching connections to youth and the scale and speed at which the program was to be delivered. In March 2020, a significant proportion of the board of directors at WE Charity had been abruptly replaced. [40] Moreover, these files strongly suggested that the public service had been pressured by political forces to select WE Charity;[5] and that there had been a significant amount of governmental collaboration with WE Charity prior to the creation of the program. While on the South Asian tour, Craig came to know that the then prime minister of Canada was visiting India and Craig requested an audience with him to include child labour issue as one of his agendas.

[59][68], On August 18, 2020, Justin Trudeau officially progued parliament. [35] (See August 13, and August 18), On April 18, 2020 the Finance Department discussed involving a third-party to administer the program. In normal times, [this] 100 per cent would have been something we could have done. In a 2015 campaign manifesto, Justin Trudeau promised to never make use of prorogation to avoid scrutiny;[71] he has repeatedly castigated the practice of prorogation, even going as far as to attend an anti-prorogation rally in 2010. Through a no-bid selection process, WE Charity was chosen to administer the CSSG, which would have created grants for students who volunteered during the COVID-19 pandemic. Co-founders Craig (left) and Marc Kielburger introduce Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau as they appear at the WE Day celebrations in Ottawa, Nov. 10, 2015. tap here to see other videos from our team. Pop Goes The News — Canadian social entrepreneur Craig Kielburger married Leysa Cerswell last weekend — only three months after announcing their engagement. [112][113][114], On August 18, 2020, Prime Minister Trudeau suspended the functioning of the committees by asking the Governor General of Canada Julie Payette to prorogue Parliament until September 23 to present a new Speech from the Throne with an updated vision and priorities in light of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada.

Sign up for our weekly email newsletter delving into climate science and life on a changing planet. "[35] In addition to this, deputy minister of intergovernmental affairs and youth Christiane Fox stated: "I understand WE has been in touch with some of you (or your teams) on a proposal they have for social innovation, picking up from discussions they had with us pre-Covid. We would like to express to you our deepest thanks for your contribution. ... famously known for being Frank Sinatra’s wife for a short time. [77] Also on this day, the Finance Department decided to select a third-party to administer the contract, however it specified that no specific group had been chosen to run it. [98] Additional documents supported the government's claims that the civil service had evaluated several other nonprofits, including Colleges and Institutes Canada, the United Way and Canadian Red Cross, before recommending WE Charity. Producer, Co-founders Craig (left) and Marc Kielburger introduce Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau as they appear at the WE Day celebrations in Ottawa on November 10, 2015. Download the CTV News app now. Dinsdale however noted that "It would have been tough given the state of YMCAs across the country, given the impact of COVID — really fighting for basic survival," continuing, "In normal times, (this) 100 per cent would have been something we could have done. WE Charity is closing its Canadian operations. One month earlier, a WE employee in Illinois named Francie Schnipke Richards received a wedding invitation via a work email from Lisa Lisle, Craig’s then-chief-of-staff. [93] Wernick further explained that she made her recommendation because the public service was overburdened with responsibilities pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic, and that while other charities were consulted and considered, the program had to be started quickly, and an open bidding process would have taken months.[93]. That we anticipated that there would be mistakes. [101] Responding to concerns that WE Charity benefited from a close relationship with the federal Liberals, she went on to say that the board of directors considered WE Charity to be "non-partisan. [72] The prorogation had an additional consequence in that WE Charity, which had explicitly promised to release their side of the documents relating to the scandal weeks earlier in July, refused to release them now, as there were no standing committees to submit them to; WE Charity went on to label attempts to acquire this information as "politicking". [31], Initially, WE Charity and Trudeau insisted that the charity had never paid members of Trudeau's family to appear at events. Engage in respectful discussions on the U.S. election on our dedicated Facebook page, Use of this Website assumes acceptance of Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy, Published Monday, October 26, 2020 1:55PM EDT, Last Updated Monday, October 26, 2020 3:52PM EDT, CTV News has ongoing coverage of the 2020 U.S. presidential election, Capital Dispatch: Stay up to date on the latest news from Parliament Hill, Liberals, WE make disclosures as chance of confidence vote heats up on the Hill, PM chancing snap election over Conservative motion, Trudeau government survives confidence vote, Freeland to face grilling over business aid as part of deal to fast-track bill, Why experts say Trudeau staying quiet on U.S. election uncertainty is necessary, Federal leaders commemorate lost military members ahead of Remembrance Day, Bank of Canada's second-in-command moves departure date to December, Trudeau slated to speak with Macron amid furor over his response to attacks in France, Canada 'very carefully' monitoring unfolding U.S. election outcome: PM, Power Play: Trump 'beyond the realm of normalcy', Power Play: U.S. election still too close to call, 'There's something that is not being detected', Power Play: 'This is wrong. — Craig Kielburger. [29] On June 29, 2020, Justin Trudeau said that "as the Public Service dug into it, they came back with only one organization that was capable of networking, and organizing, and delivering this program on the scale that we needed it, and that was the WE program.

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