March 2016


Independent Non-partisan Senators Working Group is launched



June 8, 2016


Selection Committee presents its 4th Report, which assigns independent senators to committees although not in numbers that reflect the principle of proportionality



June 15, 2016


Senate adopts Selection Committee’s report assigning independent senators to committees



June 29, 2016


The Independent Senators Group (ISG) is formally announced



July to December 2016


Usual Channels open to accommodate independent senators:


July – December: ISG included as a member of the Advisory Working Group to review the (SARs)

September – December: ISG included as a non-voting member of the Subcommittee on Estimates

October – December: ISG included in Scroll Meetings (the daily Chamber planning meeting)



October 4, 2016


Modernization Committee recommends that procedural and administrative rules be changed to


  1. include ‘recognized parliamentary groups’ on a par with ‘recognized political parties’ and caucuses

  2. explicitly recognize the proportionality principle


December 6, 2016


Senate authorizes Internal Economy (CIBA) to provide funding for ISG



December 7, 2016


Motion by Conservative Leader, seconded by all other Leaders and Facilitators, adopted:

  • Senate agrees that Independent senators should sit on committees in numbers reflecting the proportionality principle

  • ISG senators are added as fourth (albeit non-voting) members of steering committees

  • ISG gains authority to substitute ISG members on committees in the event of absences, etc.


December 14, 2016


Selection Committee presents its 5th Report, which explicitly recognizes the Independent Senators Group (ISG) as a formal entity



December 15, 2016


Senate adopts motion to assign committee seats proportionally to members of ISG

CIBA authorizes funding for personnel to support the ISG (the Secretariat)



February to June 2017


Usual channels further open to accommodate independent senators

Clerk of the Senate changes the designation on all formal documents from ‘non-affiliated’ to ‘Independent Senators Group’, thus recognizing the ISG as a formal entity

Weekly Leaders’ Meetings include the ISG Facilitator

ISG continues to participate in weekly Scroll Meetings

Speaker formally includes the ISG in his rotation for Question Period on a proportional basis

Provincial and federal government correspondence begins to include the ISG on courtesy distribution lists

PCO includes the ISG on its protocol list for state events such as awarding an honorary citizenship to Ms. Malala




May 9, 2017


Rules Committee adopts rule changes putting ‘recognized parliamentary groups’ on a par with ‘recognized political parties’




May 11, 2017


Senate adopts rule changes putting ‘recognized parliamentary groups’ on a par with ‘recognized political parties’.



June 1, 2017


Senate adopts a rule change explicitly reflecting the proportionality principle for Selection Committees

CIBA’s Subcommittee on Communications agrees to change a senator’s designation on all digital documents from ‘non-affiliated’ to ‘Independent Senators Group’, again recognizing the ISG as a formal entity. The change is implemented on June 2, 2017



June 2016 to May 2017


20% of government bills receiving Royal Assent have been amended by the Senate.In the previous 35 years, only 4.5% of government bills given Royal Assent were amended by the Senate.



June 21, 2017


Senate adopts rule changes putting recognized parliamentary groups’ on par with “recognized parties” in the definition of “caucus” for the purposes of the Senate Administrative