Liberal MP apologizes after appearing naked on House of Commons video feed
William Amos says video on 'accidentally' while he changed into work clothes after jog
A Quebec Liberal MP is apologizing after he was seen naked on a video screen while MPs participated in a hybrid parliamentary session on Wednesday.
William Amos, who represents the western Quebec riding of Pontiac, appeared on-screen without clothes moving around his office. Amos appeared on a video feed that only MPs and House of Commons staff can see, separate from the public-facing ParlVu video system.
CBC News obtained a photo that shows Amos standing without clothes in what appears to be an office with Canadian and Quebec flags in the background. He is holding something that blocks the view of his private parts.
In a statement, Amos said the incident was the result of an unfortunate error.
"My video was accidentally turned on as I was changing into my work clothes after going for a jog. I sincerely apologize to my colleagues in the House of Commons for this unintentional distraction. Obviously, it was an honest mistake and it won't happen again," Amos said.
Bloc Québécois MP Claude DeBellefeuille raised the issue in a point of order with the Speaker of the House of Commons following question period.
"Mr. Speaker, as you know, since the beginning of the pandemic we have tried to emphasize the importance of respecting decorum and the dress code here in the House. I think that today we have set a new record. We have seen a member during question period improperly dressed. That is, unclothed. So perhaps remind the members, especially the male members, that suits and ties are appropriate but also a shirt, underpants and pants," DeBellefeuille said in French.
"We have seen that the member was in very good shape, but I think this member should be reminded of what is appropriate and to control his camera."
WATCH | CBC's David Cochrane reports on Liberal MP caught on camera naked during question period
Speaker of the House Anthony Rota replied in French that while he didn't catch a glimpse himself, House technicians did see "something."
"I would therefore like to remind members to always be vigilant when they are near a camera and a microphone," Rota said.
Parliament has been operating in a hybrid form since May of last year because the physical-distancing measures imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic forced a reduction in the number of politicians and staff working in person in the Commons. Most MPs have been participating in proceedings virtually via Zoom since then, and only a small number have been attending in person.
According to House of Commons Procedure and Practice, there is no specific dress code required in the House. But Speakers have ruled that to be recognized to speak, all MPs must be dressed in contemporary business attire. For men, that means wearing a suit jacket, shirt and tie as standard dress, the guide says.