Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, on the steps of Rideau Cottage. (CPAC)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, on the steps of Rideau Cottage. (CPAC)

Now not the time to talk about breaking with the monarchy, Trudeau says

‘I’m focused on getting us through this pandemic and bringing our economy roaring back’

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Tuesday he’s not eager for a debate over the future of the monarchy in the wake of allegations of racism at Buckingham Palace.

Accusations from Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, that racism was the driving force behind their exit from royal duties and departure from Britain have set off a heated debate within the Commonwealth about future ties to the Queen.

“If people want to later talk about constitutional change and shifting our system of government, that’s fine, and they can have those conversations,” Trudeau told reporters Tuesday,

“But right now, I’m not having those conversations. I’m focused on getting us through this pandemic and bringing our economy roaring back.”

Trudeau said Canada still has work to do to eliminate discrimination and systemic racism in its institutions, but that’s doesn’t mean casting them aside and starting from scratch.

Both the NDP and Bloc Quebecois leaders say the allegations are further proof the monarchy is no longer relevant to everyday Canadians and should be abolished.

“I don’t see that the benefit of the monarchy in Canadians’ lives,” Singh said.

“Now, even more so, with concerns about racism in the institution that were raised and pressures that were placed on Meghan Markle, just again highlight that exists at that institution and that is also horrible.”

VIDEO: Revealing Harry, Meghan interview reverberates across U.K.

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey that aired Sunday, the couple alleged that questions about what skin colour their children would have and a failure by the “institution” to push back against racist coverage in the British press ultimately led them to conclude they had to make a break.

For a time, the duo lived in Canada but when it became clear no security was going to be offered to keep them safe and the borders were about to slam shut around the world due to the pandemic, they decided to move to the United States.

The Liberals are still working on replacing the Queen’s representative in Canada, the governor general, after Julie Payette resigned earlier this year following revelations of a toxic workplace at Rideau Hall.

Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Dominic Leblanc said while he’d hoped to have nailed down a process for choosing a successor to Payette a couple of weeks ago, the final pieces are now being put into place and should be unveiled imminently.

He too refused to comment on the situation now faced by the Queen, also saying he hadn’t watched the interview.

RELATED: Buckingham Palace’s silence on Harry, Meghan allegations adds to furor

Justin TrudeauRoyal family

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A Morgan Creek resident has filed an official complaint against a blueberry farmer in the area. (Google image)
Morgan Creek couple files official noise complaint against blueberry farmer

Pair who recently moved to South Surrey say blasting fans keep them from sleeping

Members of the Wheeling 8’s dance group go on a roll at Surrey’s Chuck Bailey Recreation Centre in 2018, during the club’s 45th-anniversary event. If not for the pandemic, such activities could be socially prescribed as part of a new program involving Fraser Health and DiverseCity Community Resources Society. (File photo: Tom Zillich)
‘Social prescriptions’ connect Surrey seniors to activities and other services they need

Fraser Health-backed program involves GP referrals to a Seniors’ Community Connector with DiverseCity

Linda Annis, Aug. 12, 2020. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Annis wants independent auditor general for Surrey

‘Surrey taxpayers deserve the best possible oversight of the tax dollars they send to city hall,’ Surrey councillor says

rcmp
South Surrey neighbours’ calls to police lead to break-and-enter arrest

‘Prime example’ of RCMP and public working together, constable says

A large crowd protested against COVID-19 measures at Sunset Beach in Vancouver on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. (Snapchat)
VIDEO: Large, police-patrolled crowds gather at Vancouver beach for COVID protests

Vancouver police said they patrolled the area and monitored all gatherings

Ocean Legacy Foundation members conduct a shoreline pollution cleanup in Vancouver. (OLP)
It’s time to end ‘suffocating’ plastic pollution along B.C. shorelines, advocates urge

This Earth Day, Ocean Legacy Foundation is launching a free educational platform to educate the public about plastic pollution

A teacher-librarian in Nanaimo was fired in 2019 for checking out an age-inappropriate graphic novel to a student. The discipline agreement was published Wednesday, April 21. (News Bulletin file photo)
B.C. teacher-librarian fired for checking out too-graphic graphic novel to student

Teacher had been previously disciplined and suspended on two occasions

Former University of Victoria rowing coach Barney Williams is photographed in the stands during the Greater Victoria Invitational at CARSA Performance Gym at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, November 29, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Former B.C. university rowing coach ‘deeply sorry’ after complaints

Barney Williams says he’s been committed to ensuring no other member of the roster had a similar experience

Aria Pendak Jefferson cuddles ChiChi, the family cat that ran away two years ago in Ucluelet. The feline was missing until Courtney Johnson and Barry Edge discovered her in the parking lot of the Canadian Princess earlier this month. Aria and her parents were reunited with ChiChi in a parking lot in Port Alberni. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
B.C. girl’s wish granted as her cat came back, two years later

Courtenay family reunited with cat that went missing in Ucluelet in 2019

Stu Burgess is operations manager for Golden Ears and Rolley Lake Provincial Parks. (The News files)
Golden Ears park camping to be limited to those in local health region

Fraser Health Authority and Vancouver Coastal Health now considered one region

Thousands have converged in Whonnock Lake Park to enjoy the nice weather. (Roxanne Hooper/The News)
Thousands enjoy B.C. park with warnings about social distancing

Portable toilets installed in anticipation of nice weather

FILE – The Instagram app is shown on an iPhone in Toronto on Monday, March 19, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
Judge acquits B.C. teen boy ‘set up’ on sex assault charge based on Instagram messages

The girl and her friends did not have ‘good intentions’ towards the accused, judge says

Kai Palkeinen recently helped a car stuck on the riverbed near the Big Eddy Bridge. While the car could not be saved, some of the driver’s belongings were. It’s common for vehicles to get stuck in the area due to significantly changing river levels from Revelstoke Dam. (Photo by Kai Palkeinen)
“I just sank a car’: Revelstoke resident wants Columbia River better protected

Although it’s not permitted, the riverbed near the city is popular for off roading

Most Read