House of Commons Hansard #146 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-22.

Topics

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. Minister of Labour.

Status of Women
Oral Questions

2:35 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 do not need new legislation; what we need is action. That is what we are doing. We began to take action last September. We have trained 90 inspectors. We are now going into companies to inform and educate employers. We are offering specialized mediation services. We are also working to ensure that companies comply with pay equity standards.

Agriculture and Agri-food
Oral Questions

May 3rd, 2007 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to give another example of the unfairness of this government. Agriculture Canada has decided to close the Farm Women's Bureau in Ottawa, after 26 years of existence. The minister is thereby cutting off an important source of information, available in French, for women farmers, as well as the francophone link to government resources and other women farmers in Canada.

Can the minister tell us why he decided to close this bureau, a resource that is so valuable to the Fédération des agricultrices du Québec, for whom this closure is a sign of this government's indifference to the needs of women farmers?

Agriculture and Agri-food
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable
Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis Secretary of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, it always amuses me to hear the Bloc Québécois talk about unfairness. An additional $4.5 billion has been invested in agriculture, an additional $1 billion in budget 2007 alone. What about the savings account? What about the $400 million for production costs? All of that, that is action. That is not just talk.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, when we are talking about a deal concerning the transfer of detainees by the Canadian Forces, how is it possible that the chief of the defence staff has said he does not know the details of this deal? Did the Minister of Foreign Affairs consult with anybody at the Department of National Defence or has the Prime Minister so completely lost confidence in that minister that he kept the minister out of the loop?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, obviously, the departments talked to each other throughout this process. We have a new ambassador now in Kabul, Arif Lalani. He has been working very closely with officials since he took his post in Kabul. We have had direct contact of course with DND as well as members of Correctional Service Canada for the implementation of this enhanced agreement. We are confident, where the Liberal government failed, and we are going to make sure this agreement works properly.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, this agreement was conveniently signed just hours before the start of the Federal Court proceedings this morning. Even the judge is said to have remarked on the curious timing of this particular agreement. Canadians were forced to learn therefore about this agreement from a Federal Court judge rather than from the responsible minister.

Did the foreign affairs minister push forward the signing of this critical international agreement in order to save the government from a public embarrassment before our courts?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, what foreign affairs did, and it had the lead on this particular issue, was work with all departments to ensure that we got it right. We have actually worked very quickly when one considers that the agreement was in place back in 2005.

When the issues came forward, we took action to enhance the agreement and to ensure that we got it right. We have ensured that this enhanced agreement will make explicit Canada's expectation and of course Afghanistan's responsibilities vis-à-vis detainees.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, the foreign affairs minister has been silent about the rising tensions between Estonia and Russia over the last two weeks. This is not surprising since the Auditor General's report this week exposed the disarray within the Department of Foreign Affairs. It painted a picture of a minister who has lost control of his department.

Can the Minister of Foreign Affairs tell the House what actions Canada is taking to ease the tensions between Estonia and Russia?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, the short answer is that we take direct diplomacy very seriously. We talk to our allies. We talk to countries involved when these international disputes arise.

Vis-à-vis the question with respect to the Auditor General's report, we are clearly very committed to Canada's core values of freedom, democracy, human rights, and the advancement of good government practices. It is something that the members opposite know very little about.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, we know a lot more, given the Ottawa convention as a good example.

Tensions between these countries are escalating. The Estonian ambassador was roughed up in Moscow this week. This is a serious issue. If the government is committed to having Canada play a role in international affairs, and so far the track record has not been promising, we need to take action immediately.

Will the Minister of Foreign Affairs take control in his department, take action, and support Estonia against Russian intimidation as other NATO countries have already done?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Central Nova
Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

By all means, Mr. Speaker, we stand very strongly with the people of Estonia in any kind of intimidation from Russia or any other country.

I would have the member opposite know that I spoke directly to the Estonian foreign minister when we attended NATO meetings. We are very aware of the world as it unfolds in terms of these tensions. We work directly with our allies. We work directly to promote democracy, democratic practices and the promotion of human rights.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Art Hanger Calgary Northeast, AB

Mr. Speaker, Canada has one of the lowest ages of consent for sexual activity in the western world, 14 years. Our government introduced Bill C-22 which seeks to raise the age of consent to 16 and protect our young people from sexual predators and exploitation.

Can the Minister of Justice inform the House, and I dare say the grandmas, grandpas, moms and dads in this country, on the progress of this legislation which shares widespread support among Canadians?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for Calgary Northeast and his colleague, the member for Wild Rose. For the last 14 years they have been championing the cause against sexual predators in our country.

When they approached the previous government, for 13 years all they got was some sympathy, but no action. I am very proud to be a part of a government that, when it comes to protecting children against adult sexual predators, actually gets the job done.

Canadian Heritage
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, newspapers in the heritage minister's own riding have raised the question of abuse of office over this new sponsorship boondoggle. They point out that three weeks ago the minister went to the Lake Scugog Council to talk about how to spend the $30 million in festival funding. At the same time, she was telling the member for Windsor West that she had no idea of the festival funding. It gets worse. When confronted by local journalists, she suggested that a local midnight madness sale was a prime example of a good festival.

Are we talking federal dollars for a sidewalk sale? What kind of pork barrel bamboozle is she trying to pull?