Feds turn­ing their back on re­search

The Southwest Booster - - OPINION - MP Ted Hsu, Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy Critic for the Lib­eral Party of Canada

To the ed­i­tor: This month sci­en­tists from all across Canada held a funeral march on Par­lia­ment Hill for the “death of ev­i­dence.” They were protest­ing how MP David An­der­son and his Con­ser­va­tive gov­ern­ment are ig­nor­ing ev­i­dence in pol­icy-mak­ing, cut­ting off fund­ing to vi­tal re­search and pre­vent­ing gov­ern­ment sci­en­tists from pre­sent­ing ev­i­dence to the pub­lic.

This nor­mally re­served group was moved to noisy protest by a set of de­ci­sions of the Con­ser­va­tive gov­ern­ment that shows dis­re­gard for the hard work that our sci­en­tists do to gen­er­ate knowl­edge for the ben­e­fit of Cana­di­ans.

The Con­ser­va­tives are elim­i­nat­ing the Ex­per­i­men­tal Lakes Area, which we have used for 40 years to pro­tect us from poi­sons in our wa­ter. They killed the manda­tory long form cen­sus, de­priv­ing us of a clear pic­ture and un­der­stand­ing of the cir­cum­stances that Cana­di­ans face in their daily lives. Scores of fed­eral sci­en­tists will no longer be mon­i­tor­ing and re­port­ing to us about the en­vi­ron­ment that our chil­dren and grand­chil­dren will have to live in.

I be­lieve that to make good de­ci­sions you need good data. Yet Mr. An­der­son and the Con­ser­va­tives are erod­ing that data, bit by bit. It leaves our gov­ern­ment fly­ing blind—and dan­ger­ously ill- equipped to pro­tect the health and safety of Cana­di­ans.

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