House of Commons Hansard #31 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was first.

Topics

Immigrant Women
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the government is very pleased to have worked with the provinces and our local service providers to provide services for new Canadians to help them adjust to Canadian life. We have invested $1.3 billion to that end, over five years. I should point out that the members opposite voted against that.

Immigrant Women
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Diane Marleau Sudbury, ON

Mr. Speaker, the policies of the Conservative government are not working. Immigrant women need language training. They need to have access to programs to improve their skills. These very qualified women want to have the opportunity to fully participate in the Canadian economy, and we need them.

What does this government intend to do?

Immigrant Women
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, apart from investing $1.3 billion in settlement funding, funding that the Liberals froze for 10 years, last May we launched the Foreign Credentials Referral Office, which will help these new Canadians find out how to get their credentials evaluated so they can upgrade their skills to our standards even before they get here. Once again, the Liberals voted against that.

Housing
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Maria Minna Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, four million Canadians have housing needs and most of them are women. To deal with this problem, the government cut $200 million for affordable housing and another $45 million from the budget of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Cutting funding for affordable housing makes no sense at all.

When will the government restore the money it took out of affordable housing?

Housing
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Medicine Hat
Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, that is a complete fabrication. This government is spending more on affordable housing than any government in history.

When we came to power, one of the first things we did was to provide a $1.4 billion housing trust so vulnerable Canadians, men and women alike, would have the chance to have a roof over their head. Today we are spending more than any government in history precisely because we are concerned about the plight of these people.

The member should reflect on the Liberal Party's own record, a record that saw it cut and download the housing file to the provinces in—

Housing
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Beaches--East York.

Housing
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Maria Minna Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, we should deal in reality. The finance minister even admitted last year, in a speech in New York, that the federal government should get out of the housing business. Hardly surprising, given he is the same minister who once suggested that the homeless should be thrown in jail.

Instead of putting up roadblocks, why will the Conservative government not deal with the affordable housing barriers facing women?

Housing
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Medicine Hat
Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, in 1995 the Liberals downloaded all the housing to the provinces. They cut $25 billion out of the Canada social transfer, the deepest cuts in Canadian history to our social safety net. I think actions speak a lot louder than the member's words.

Obviously those members think that vulnerable Canadians are the ones who should be targeted for the cuts. Meanwhile, they maintained big pots of money that became the sponsorship scandal. Shame on them for their history.

Manufacturing Sector
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, while everyone has been waiting for months for the federal government to do its homework and announce immediate measures to help the manufacturing sector, yesterday, the Minister of Industry had the gall to tell us that he was pleased that Quebec had finally put a plan in place. I do not want to hear the minister tell me about tax cuts. Companies without profits do not pay income tax.

Instead of shamelessly attacking Quebec, which has done its part, when will the minister finally come up with a plan for the manufacturing sector?

Manufacturing Sector
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we have already said that the manufacturing sector is a pillar of the Canada's economy.

I noted the comment about tax cuts, but our government is continuing to create a climate for that industry. We realize that the current situation is not easy, but the industry has to innovate and make investments.

Each level of government has to do its part.

Manufacturing Sector
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, the number of job losses and plant closures in the forestry and manufacturing sectors keeps growing in every region, including in the Mauricie region and in Trois-Rivières, where this month alone, 710 jobs were lost; yet the minister is not acting. The Minister of Industry should implement the plan put forward by the Standing Committee on Finance, which yesterday endorsed the 22 recommendations of the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology to help the manufacturing sector.

How many committees will have to endorse these 22 recommendations before the minister finally decides to take action?

Manufacturing Sector
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we are taking action. The Minister of Finance in particular has put forward a fiscal plan that is strong, that will produce in Canada the fiscal policy framework for us to succeed, to be globally competitive. That is what it is all about.

The Canadian economy continues to be strong. There continue to be challenges in certain sectors in response to changing global demand patterns, but we continue to create more new jobs in Canada. We are on pace to create some 345,000 jobs this year, the same as last year. Our unemployment rate is at a 33 year low. Industry can and will adapt.

Older Workers
Oral Questions

December 5th, 2007 / 2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development claims that we lack faith in the people of Quebec. He, however, lacks compassion. Older workers have been losing their jobs because of numerous closures in the manufacturing and forestry sectors. Those aged 55 and over who, for the most part, have neither training nor experience in other areas cannot find new jobs.

I will therefore repeat my question: What is the government doing for these people? When will it come up with a real income support program to help them?

Older Workers
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Medicine Hat
Alberta

Conservative

Monte Solberg Minister of Human Resources and Social Development

Mr. Speaker, the fact is last month the most successful job seekers across the country were older workers, so the member is flat out wrong. Older workers do have the ability to get new jobs, to adapt new skills. We see that reflected every month in the job numbers.

I just have to tell the member, I reassert my claim that he really does need to have faith in the people of Quebec. We have tremendous faith in their ability to pick up new skills and transition into new industries. I wish the member would have the same faith in his own constituents.

Older Workers
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, for people from Alberta like him, everything is great and the oil companies provide lots of jobs. But in Quebec, the manufacturing sector is tumbling down like a house of cards.

What is the government's plan for older workers who cannot find work? Will it tell them to move to Alberta to help the oil companies, as suggested by the member's colleague in the regional development agency? Or will it fund a POWA at a cost of $60 million out of the $1.7 billion employment insurance fund surplus?