Quote: Originally Posted by Colpy
To be fair, his speaking engagements for pay were cleared by the Ethics Commissioner.......so yes, they were above board.
Indeed but that doesn't mean jacksh*t to a Spastic because they don't know any better.
MPs can have side jobs and business all they want as long as there is no conflict of interest and income is claimed.
Another thread that is a shining beacon of stupidity.
They even get trips paid by Charities....and yes this includes CPC MPs.
Canadian charities spend thousands hosting MPs on foreign trips (external - login to view)
There sure are a lot of ponies in Ottawa!
OTTAWA — Canadian charities that raise money to feed malnourished children and develop sanitation projects in the developing world have spent more than $40,000 taking MPs on foreign trips over the past two years.
Registered charities World Vision Canada, Engineers without Borders and Canadian Economic Development Assistance for Southern Sudan have all sponsored trips for MPs — and, in some cases, their spouses — according to reports filed with the federal ethics commissioner.
All MPs are required to file a report when they accept trips from third parties, which are considered a perk for backbench or opposition MPs who normally travel only between their ridings and Ottawa.
Most sponsors of MP junkets are trade associations or diplomatic groups, such as the Chinese International Economic Cooperation Association or the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs.
But it is unusual for charitable organizations that raise funds in Canada to use their money to fly MPs around the world.
Travel reports show that last year World Vision Canada took Conservative Dean Allison, Liberal Wayne Easter and New Democrat Isabelle Morin to Bangkok, Thailand, and Phnom Penh, Cambodia, to raise awareness of human trafficking. The MPs’ trips cost the charity a total of $13,097.
The year before, World Vision sponsored Conservative Peter Braid, Liberal John McCallum and Liberal Lise Zarac to travel to Ethiopia on a trip focused on maternal health. Braid and McCallum brought their wives along. Total cost for the travel: $8,711.
World Vision raises money for poor and hungry children around the world and is known for advertisements encouraging Canadians to “sponsor” a needy child.
This year, the charity plans to take a group of yet-unidentified MPs to Bangladesh, scene of a building collapse that killed more than 500 garment workers earlier this month.
“It’s about helping bring children’s voices to MPs,” said Elly Vandenberg, World Vision’s senior director of policy and advocacy.
She defended the MP “learning trips” as a good use of the charity’s money.
In the House of Commons, MPs hear from government staff or experts on development issues but don’t often get to speak directly to the people affected by Canadian policy abroad, she said: “It helps MPs better understand the issues affecting poor people — children, families.”
Vandenberg says she has heard from World Vision supporters who are pleased to learn about the outreach to MPs.
The organization selects the MPs for the delegations carefully, Vandenberg says, and asks them to commit to sharing what they learn on the trips with constituents. They fly economy class only, she said, unless they decided to upgrade at their own expense. Some MPs decline the offer, she said.
Conservative Allison also took a weeklong trip to Juba, Sudan, in March 2013, along with along with fellow Tory Dave Van Kesteren, a member of the foreign affairs committee. They went to “observe the activities of a Canadian NGO,” according to Allison’s report.
The trip was arranged by the Canadian Economic Development Assistance for Southern Sudan, a registered Canadian charity. The cost of their travel — $10,490 in total — was not paid from charity funds but by an unnamed donor who is passionate about the cause, according the group’s founder, David Tennant.
“I would take MP over there at any time because we’re trying to create an awareness of what we’re doing,” said Tennant.
Allison and Van Kesteren have been supporters for several years, Tennant said, and he stressed that the trip was difficult travel.
“It’s not Vegas. It’s not someplace you think, gee, I’d like a little break. I’ll go South Sudan.”
Neither Allison nor Van Kesteren responded to requests for comment.
Van Kesteren also travelled, along with then-Conservative MP Peter Goldring, to Ghana in 2011 to “provide Canadian MPs with insight into opportunities for Canada to support and invest in development of Ghana and of Africa more broadly.”
The cost for the two MPs’ travel, $7,804, was paid by Engineers Without Borders, a charity that helps develop sanitation and agricultural projects in Africa. The charity did not respond to a request for comment.
Allison, chair of the House of Commons foreign affairs committee, last year took another trip to Senegal, paid for by Micronutrient Initiative, a non-profit organization funds health and nutrition initiatives in the developing world. The trip cost the organization $7,381. (Although it has a charity number from the Canada Revenue Agency, Micronutrient Initiative doesn’t solicit donations from the public and is primarily funded by CIDA.
Allison visited Dakar to attend the launch of program promoting zinc for children.