House of Commons Hansard #68 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was standing.

Topics

Homelessness
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, this government cares about the homeless. That is why one of our earliest actions was to extend the national homelessness initiative, because we wanted to ensure that the needs were being met.

We also promised Canadians that we would review all programs to make sure that they were delivering value for money.

We are taking advantage of delivering these programs to meet the needs while we evaluate them and look for opportunities to even better serve the needs of the homeless.

Homelessness
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government's review is a sham.

On the Treasury Board's own website, the government admits that it will cut 99% from SCPI funding, from $133 million to $2 million a year. The government cannot deny it. It is on its own website.

Can the minister explain how cutting 99% of the SCPI budget will help homeless Canadians, and can she explain why $131 million has been cut from a program she said she would never cut?

Homelessness
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird President of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, I want to be very clear to the member for London—Fanshawe that this government has no intention of cutting SCPI.

Health
Oral Questions

October 24th, 2006 / 2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Tina Keeper Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, two Canadians are fighting for their lives in a Toronto hospital after contracting botulism from contaminated carrot juice.

Now we learn that the Public Health Agency of Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency saw the warnings and advisories from the U.S. a full two weeks before they passed this information on to public health officials.

Canadians need to know when food products are not safe. They depend on the government to protect them. Will the Minister of Health please explain why he failed to protect the health and safety of Canadians?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon
B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, this is a very serious case which concerns me and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

There was an isolated case. When it became two cases, we were notified. Working with our FDA partners in the United States, immediately, within 24 hours, a recall notice was put out and there was a health advisory alert. We took immediate action to bring that to the attention of Canadian consumers.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Tina Keeper Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government did nothing while Canadians were being poisoned. Had it done its job properly, the attending physicians could have taken the proper steps to treat the patients appropriately. Instead, they were left scrambling to save the lives of their patients.

Health professionals depend on the government to help them act quickly in the event of a public health threat.

Would the minister explain why he has not been accountable to the Canadian medical community and why he sat on the information necessary to prevent Canadians from getting sick and to save those who were clinging to life?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement Minister of Health and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, I can tell the hon. member and the House that the Public Health Agency of Canada has been in constant contact with officials from around the world, including the United States, on these issues.

The initial cases, once it was clear what was going on, were isolated. As soon as we knew that there was a direct causation, that information was shared. The public health officials were doing their job.

If the hon. member was so concerned about it, perhaps when she was in government she would not have cut the budget of the health department, and we could have done more at that time too.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, who are the real architects of the softwood lumber sellout? Last March we learned the Prime Minister's senior muzzlers, Ian Brodie and Derek Burney, went to Washington for secret high level talks to sell Canada down the river.

We now know that they hid their expense records for this trip and failed to file the required proactive expense disclosures.

Who paid for this trip? Why did they not follow the rules? Why exactly is the Prime Minister trying to hide this?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird President of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, it is passing strange to take lectures from the Liberal Party opposite, the party that brought us Gagliano, the party that brought us Dingwall, the party that brought us the member for Eglinton—Lawrence.

This government has a higher ethical standard. We have a stringent proactive disclosure system. We want to even expand the rules by bringing in the federal accountability act, the toughest piece of anti-corruption legislation ever in Canadian history. We hope the member opposite will use his influence with the Liberal Senate to get that law passed immediately.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to accountability, that government refuses to be accountable.

Here the members go again, dodging direct questions about how they broke the rules and broke their own promises. They can continue to play as if they are in opposition, but it does not cut it.

There are no proactive disclosure records for this stealth trip to the White House by Brodie and Burney. Did the government pay for this trip or did somebody else pay for it? If so, who? Why are there no records of this trip?

Moreover, why is the government trying to hide these secret meetings? Who is the real force behind this sellout? Why are the PMO's fingerprints all over it?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird President of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, I know the Prime Minister and the Minister of International Trade brought back from Washington $4.5 billion of Canadian funds.

We took more action in six or seven short months than the previous Liberal government did in six or seven years. We have nothing to apologize for but the good economic times that will assist an industry with many problems.

Access to Information
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, in its election platform this government promised a complete overhaul of the Access to Information Act. This is quite appropriate in view of one of Justice Gomery's recommendations that public servants keep records of their activities and that the unlawful destruction of documents be penalized.

Can the government explain why it has done nothing in this regard even though in its election platform it had promised to reform the Access to Information Act?

Access to Information
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird President of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, Justice Gomery's report has been taken very seriously on this side of the House. We read it as soon as we received it. And the first thing we did in this House was to introduce the Federal Accountability Act.

This is the greatest piece of legislation in the history of Canada to fight corruption. In this legislation, there are not 5, not 10, but 30 new government organizations that are now subject to the Access to Information Act. We are very proud of the fact that there is greater access to information. Furthermore, we wish—

Access to Information
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Access to Information
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government has set aside Justice Gomery's recommendations, particularly those regarding the Access to Information Act, despite the fact that the promise of greater transparency was part of its election platform.

Why has it made such an abrupt about-face and why is it now ignoring Justice Gomery's recommendations?