Tuesday, August 23, 2011

State Funeral for Jack

In what I have to say is personally stunning news, our Prime Minister (S. Harper, CPC - Uncanny Valley) has offered Olivia Chow a state funeral for the late Jack Layton, her husband and the Leader of the Opposition NDP. She has accepted, and there will be a full state funeral on Saturday in Toronto (2pm, Roy Thompson Hall, open to the public), for which the PM and his wife will return from their tour of the Arctic areas of Canada. Mr. Layton will also be on Parliament Hill one last time, on Wednesday and Thursday, for scheduled visitations.



State funerals are automatically offered only for current and former PMs and governors-general, and sitting members of Cabinet, so this is an impressive honour being done.



There will also be books of condolence available at every NDP MP's constituency office, as well as Toronto City Hall and at Parliament Hill in Ottawa. For those who can't reach any of those places, there is an online book of condolence at the New Democratic Party's website (en fran├žais ici).



The family have asked that memorial donations be directed to the Broadbent Institute (premier lien en fran├žais, second is in English), a left-wing think tank named for the great Ed Broadbent, former NDP leader, and a good friend of Jack's.