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Parliament will return before the end of fall, Trudeau says

Click to play video: 'Trudeau outlines his government’s priorities' Trudeau outlines his government’s priorities
WATCH: Trudeau outlines his government's priorities – Sep 28, 2021

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Parliament will be back in action before the end of fall, and that his cabinet will be sworn in during October.

He shared the news with the public during his first full press conference since the federal election one week ago.

“A few hours ago I spoke with the Governor General and confirmed for her that it is my intention of forming the next government,” Trudeau said.

“We just got through an election where Canadians made it very clear the kinds of things they want us to work on, and I’m looking forward to getting into it.”

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When that government takes shape, Chrystia Freeland will be back in cabinet, Trudeau said. She’ll be resuming her role as finance minister and deputy prime minister. Trudeau also said that he’ll ensure his cabinet achieves gender parity — despite the fact that he lost four female cabinet ministers in the Sept. 20 federal election.

“There are amazing, extraordinary candidates who get elected right across the country and I will be seeking, as I always do, to ensure that there is a proper regional distribution, that there is a range of skills and diversity around the table,” he said.

“But is a base starting point that we have gender parity in any cabinet I put together.”

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Trudeau was also pressed on whether he plans to make any changes to the upper ranks of his own office, but he kept that possibility close to his chest.

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“As we renew our team to move forward whether it’s around cabinet or around staff, there are a lot of great people coming on board, there are a lot of great people going to be continuing that work,” he said.

Looking towards the next Parliament, Trudeau said there is “lots to do” but that he’s “very excited about it.”

“We’re going to be moving forward on five clear things, commitments we made during this election, as our first priorities,” he said.

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The first is to ensure that the federal public service is vaccinated against COVID-19, Trudeau said. He also plans to move ahead with his promise to make vaccination mandatory for anyone aged 12 and older who is riding a train or a plane.

The federal government will also forge ahead with its plans to create proof of vaccination Canadians can use around the world and will “foot the bill” for provinces and territories who put in place their own, domestic vaccine certificates, Trudeau added.

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Finally, he said the government will “keep good” on its promise to protect healthcare workers from harassment and intimidation through changes to the criminal code.

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“We have many other priorities that we’re going to be working on,” Trudeau added, pointing to plans to work on issues like childcare, paid sick leave, climate change and housing affordability.

“I’m really excited about all the things that we’re going to get to do as a Parliament and as a government in the coming years,” Trudeau said.

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He said his goal is to govern for his full, four-year mandate without plunging Canada into another election.

“I am intending to govern as long as Parliament gives us confidence to do so,” Trudeau said.

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