News, Politics

Three Canadian Senators Suspended – Historic Move By Senate

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Pamela Wallin. Image: Richard Burdett
Pamela Wallin. Image: Richard Burdett

In an historic move, three Canadian senators have been tossed from the Senate.

Senators Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau have been “suspended” (removed from their jobs for a period of time).

Members of the Senate voted to suspend the three until the next federal election, likely in 2015.

The vote was hotly debated and discussed.

Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin had made impassioned speeches to the Senate, pleading their case and hoping to avoid being removed.

But in the end, the three senators were suspended.

During their suspension, they will not be allowed to work, but they will retain their title (“Senator”). Their dental and health benefits (certain parts of their pay that cover health expenses) have not been taken away from them during the suspension.

It is the first time Canadian senators, who were not convicted of a crime, have been suspended.

The three were suspended after a lengthy investigation over the way they dealt with their “expenses.”

They were accused of taking money for (“expensing”) things they had no right to.

Related links

This historic vote follows a complicated series of accusations and counter-accusations. Read TKN’s earlier reports about the “Senate scandal”:

Canadian Senators’ Expenses Being Reviewed

Canadian Senators Being Investigated

Canada’s Senate Scandal Grows Amid Accusations And Denials

CURRICULUM CONNECTIONS
By Kathleen Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
The article states: “During their suspension, they will not be allowed to work, but they will retain their title (“Senator”). Their dental and health benefits (certain parts of their pay that cover health expenses) have not been taken away from them during the suspension.”

Why do you think this decision was made? Do you think they should have been able to keep their title and benefits even though they were suspended?

Reading Prompt: Demonstrating Understanding
Before you read this article, did you know anything about the senate scandal? After you read the article, what new information did you learn? If you are slightly confused or you still have questions about the situation, that’s not surprising. In order to understand this article, you need to have background information about the current situation in the government. Otherwise, it could be quite confusing.

What questions do you still have about the senate scandal? How do you think you can find these answers?

Intermediate
Demonstrate understanding of increasingly complex texts by summarizing important ideas and citing a variety of details that support the main idea (OME, Reading: 1.4).

Grammar Feature: A vs. An
Many people are confused about when to use the word ‘a’ versus ‘an’. Two examples from the article are shown below: 
1. “In an historic move, three Canadian senators have been tossed from the Senate.”
2. “It is the first time Canadian senators, who were not convicted of a crime, have been suspended.”

The rule is that you need to use an before a word that starts with a vowel sound. If it does not start with a vowel sound, you should use the word a

Read the sentence below and determine whether to use or an:
1. I will meet my friend Joe in ___ hour.
2. I took ___ chocolate bar in my lunch today.
3. ___ flashlight shone brightly in my eyes.
4. The letter was placed in ___ envelope before it was sealed and mailed.
5. ___ elephant kicked up dust when it ran across the desert.