House of Commons Hansard #95 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was refugees.

Topics

RCMP Commissioner
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, the question was clear and it was direct and we have no answer. The only answer we have is from the Prime Minister's spin machine.

Why did the Prime Minister's go to such lengths to protect the commissioner? Why did he do nothing when he knew everything in early November? Why did he wait until there was massive public outrage to demand action? The committee and Canadians deserve answers.

Will the Prime Minister confirm that his national security adviser and Mr. Elliott will be available for the committee to question before we break for Christmas, or will they continue to be too busy?

RCMP Commissioner
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I have already answered that question a couple of times today, but let me once again recount the facts for the hon. member. I think the important thing to remember is that Commissioner Zaccardelli himself tendered his resignation in what he believed to be the best interests of the RCMP. That is why the government accepted his resignation.

I would point out to all hon. members who give this any more than 30 seconds' thought that only as a last resort, only under the most extreme circumstances, would the Prime Minister ever intervene in the national police force to start hiring and firing people at will. Commissioner Zaccardelli took the decision. We supported that decision.

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

December 11th, 2006 / 2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, Maher Arar feels that the RCMP commissioner's resignation is not enough and that certain pieces of information must now be made public.

Will the Prime Minister, in the name of fairness to Mr. Arar, promise to make public the names of the people responsible for the media leaks concerning Mr. Arar, particularly the people who continued to allow the leaks, which discredited Mr. Arar, even while Justice O'Connor was conducting the inquiry?

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, this is finally a good question. We are very concerned about the question of who may have given information to the media and we want to know who those people are. Indeed, giving information to the media was a very bad thing to do.

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to give the minister an opportunity, since he likes my questions. I have a question for which he has the answer and I would like him to give us the answer here today.

Maher Arar and every member of this House all want to know who in the RCMP gave the Americans the information that led to Maher Arar's deportation to Syria? The minister knows the answer to this question, and I would like him to tell us here today.

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, according to Justice O'Connor's report, people from the RCMP gave the information to the Americans. I will try to obtain names. Once I obtain them, if possible, I will give those names to my hon. colleague.

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Vivian Barbot Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, in order to fully clear his reputation and recover all his rights, Maher Arar wants assurance that his name will be removed from the U.S. suspected terrorist watch list.

What is the government waiting for to act with determination and demand that the Americans remove Maher Arar's name from this list?

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, we have indicated to the Americans that we have removed Mr. Arar's name and the names of his family members from our lists. And we have asked the Americans to do the same. The United States is a sovereign nation. I do not know whether they will comply, but we have asked them to do so.

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Vivian Barbot Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, we think that the Canadian government owes more than that to Maher Arar and that it has to demand that the Americans remove his name from the list.

Why does the government refuse to make public the entire O'Connor report, something Mr. Arar has been asking for and regarding which Justice O'Connor has no objection and sees no threat to Canada's safety?

Maher Arar Inquiry
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, first of all it is important to note that Justice O'Connor has said that all the information that he ever wanted to look at, he was allowed to look at.

In certain cases, in certain very narrow pieces of legislation, it is deemed to be, if they are made public, that they could have a detrimental effect on national security. In those narrow cases alone, a decision was made to withhold the information, but it had nothing to do with any names in terms of individuals who could have been at fault and who could have done anything inappropriate in any way on the Canadian side. Any of the information that was withheld was strictly from the point of view of national security.

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday marked the 25th anniversary of Canada's ratification of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. Yet after years of Conservative and Liberal government, women in Canada make only 71¢ for every dollar a man makes.

Will the Prime Minister put women on a equal footing with men by introducing pay equity and a federal minimum wage and creating real day care spaces to help women finally participate fully in the labour force here in Canada?

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma
Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn Minister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Mr. Speaker, we have decided to act immediately on pay equity instead of waiting for new legislation that would take months and months and months.

We have asked our inspectors to go out into the field and visit businesses to make sure they have a pay equity program for women.

We feel that by being proactive, we will truly help the cause of women, and that is the approach we will take.

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, that is going to be whispering in the ears of the various companies, I assume, to suggest that they finally get on board with women's equality.

The Prime Minister said in the last election that he was committed to “ensure that Canada fully upholds its commitments to women in Canada”. He certainly has not done that. He has rejected pay equity. He has removed the goal of equality from the Status of Women organization. He has done nothing to create child care, and surely he would at least admit that, despite the fact that there are thousands of working families waiting for spaces.

How much longer do women have to wait for fairness? When will we stop getting proclamations and start getting action on women's equality?

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as the Minister of Labour just said, the government is pursuing aggressively obligations with the private sector under existing pay equity legislation.

This government has done a number of other things for women, of course, and obviously there is the universal child benefit that goes to all Canadian families. We have increased funding to on reserve family violence shelters by $6 million. The Minister of Indian Affairs has begun action on matrimonial property rights.

While those members over there want to protect lawyers, we have proceeded with stronger legislation on criminal violence against women. We hope the House will pass that.

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Belinda Stronach Newmarket—Aurora, ON

Mr. Speaker, the recent cuts to the Status of Women and the removal of the goal of equality from the mandate of the women's program speak volumes about the Conservatives' regressive approach to women's concerns.

Canada has made great strides toward greater equality, but the current government has put that success at risk. Women still earn only 71 cents on the dollar of what a man earns. That is not equality.

If the minister has indeed changed her mind on that cut, will she also change her mind and reinstate the goal of equality into the mandate of the women's program?