House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was border.

Topics

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, that is the lamest excuse I have ever heard.

The RCMP is a national force and it can have a national system. The issue is not only that $9 million a year are being wasted but that the person who blew the whistle on this was shunted aside. He was made persona non grata.

Would the minister undertake to conduct an investigation to determine whether or not Gavin Berube was made persona non grata as a result of actually blowing the whistle on this matter?

Public Safety
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the function of the RCMP in most of British Columbia is local policing, which is pursuant to a contract with the Province of British Columbia. British Columbia actually pays 90% of the cost of that policing and the federal government pays 10% to reflect the federal policing share.

Similarly, that is the case with this database. When the province of British Columbia wants it to work effectively in British Columbia for local policing, we need to acknowledge that it makes a bit of sense, which is why we want to see the closest integration to combat crime as effectively as possible in British Columbia for British Columbians.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Dona Cadman Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, this week has been declared as National Victims of Crime Awareness Week.

Victims' rights is an issue that is very dear to me and was especially important to my late husband Chuck, who was well-known to many members here today. For years he and I criticized our justice system for focusing too much on the rights of criminals. All too often the victims felt they were victimized a second time by the justice system.

Could the minister advise the House of the significant efforts taken by our government to ensure that the victims of crime have a greater voice within the justice system?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I, too, remember Chuck as a venerable and determined fighter for the cause of victims, a tireless champion, and his early passing was a great loss to his family and to all Canadians.

Our government believes that for too long the justice system has all but ignored the experience of victims, their concerns and their interests, which is why we have decided to take action to rebalance our justice system to take them into account.

We have taken action on things like establishing an ombudsman for victims. We have included victims in National Parole Board hearings. We have provided video conferencing for their involvement. We are doing other things to provide online services and more. We are taking the side of victims, not criminals.

Canadian Flag Pins
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week, the Minister of Canadian Heritage tried to duck responsibility for the fact that his office, during the largest manufacturing meltdown in Canadian history, outsourced the production of Canadian flag pins to China. Rather than taking responsibility for that action, he tried to shift blame to the parliamentary boutique.

I called the parliamentary gift shop and it assured me that, unlike the Department of Canadian Heritage, all its pins are made in Canada.

How can we count on the minister to stand up for Canadian jobs when he cannot even stand up and give a straightforward answer?

Canadian Flag Pins
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, I did give a straightforward answer about the pins that are sold on Parliament Hill. The contract for the pins that are purchased by the Government of Canada and distributed to members of Parliament went to, wait for it, a Canadian company in Montreal. We are doing our job.

If the hon. member wants to distribute different pins from his office, he is free to use his MP budget and purchase whatever pins he wants.

We will make it crystal clear that this government has always stood up for this country and for our symbols in spite of the noise from the NDP.

Arts and Culture
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, as if the issue of maple leaf pins is not bad enough, the government's handling of Canada Day activities is also being called into question.

Last year, Quebec received about 85% of the total Canada Day funds while the rest of the country received only 15%.

While funding for activities in Quebec is important, would the government explain why it does not think that Canada Day is important enough to promote in the rest of Canada?

Arts and Culture
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, of course the member's facts are entirely wrong. It seems that she and the Bloc Québécois got their facts from the exact same inaccurate newspaper.

The reality is that we have increased funding to support Canadian festivals across this country, including Canada Day, to celebrate Canada. The numbers that she is using are entirely wrong.

We are using this money effectively to support festivals and events across this country that support the birthday of this country. We are proud to do that and we are doing it in a way that is more effective than what the Liberals did, as I described, in a report that was done that showed that 79% of the money under the Liberals went to Liberal only ridings.

We are doing our job to ensure that Canada is celebrated and celebrated with honour.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

April 27th, 2009 / 2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Foreign Affairs had not yet read the ruling in the Omar Khadr case when he announced his decision to file an appeal. A few hours later, the department announced that a final decision on appealing the ruling had not yet been taken.

Has someone notified the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the final decision made by his deputy minister?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker Omar Khadr faces very serious charges. A news report showed media footage of Mr. Khadr allegedly building and planting the improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan, the very devices that have taken the lives of dozens of Canadian men and women.

We are contemplating the appeal of this decision and we will be reviewing the court decision.

As the matter is still before the court, we cannot speak any further on that.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, clearly the government wants to buy time by filing an appeal. That is the only reason it is prolonging the debate.

But beyond procedure, there is a question the government has never answered. We know that Canada is a signatory to the United Nations convention on the protection of child soldiers. Consequently, can the minister give us his definition of a child soldier?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary East
Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I have said on many occasions in the House, and I will repeat it, Omar Khadr faces very serious charges. He is accused of killing Sergeant Christopher Speer, an American medic in Afghanistan, the same country Canadian troops are fighting today.

President Obama has started a process and we will respect his decision by allowing the committee to run its course.

As I said, we are reviewing the court's decision and considering an appeal. I cannot say any more.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week the U.S. Homeland Secretary said clearly that 9/11 terrorists came from Canada. Then Friday, former presidential candidate, Senator McCain, defended her, stating “well, some of the 9/11 hijackers did come through Canada”. The public safety minister's response was that he and the secretary had a chuckle over it.

While a former ambassador to the U.S. calls the myth a “viral infection”, while it threatens thousands of jobs and billions in trade, while the secretary continues to say that terrorists come from Canada, the minister has a chuckle. What exactly is so funny?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, what we chuckle about is the fact that some people are so ill-informed as to perpetuate the myth and some people are so ill-informed and so uninterested in advancing Canada's interests that they continue to want to feed the myth all the time.

That is what the hon. member wants to do, but we prefer a different approach, where we work co-operatively with the Americans, both to educate them, as is the case with Senator McCain, who needs to get a bit of education on the issue, and the 9/11 commission report is a good place for him to look, but also to look at the considerable steps we have taken as a country to secure our borders and to become more secure against terrorism. We have had successes.

We have had two successful prosecutions against terrorists here with Momin Khawaja, with the Toronto 18. We are taking action to make Canada secure.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, the actions of the Conservatives have not worked. The secretary continues to say that terrorists come from Canada. It should not take our leader going to Washington to do that government's job.

This is another quote, “We know that Canada is seen as a soft spot...of undesirable people, possibly criminal elements, being able to gain access to our country”. This time it is not a U.S. official. It is the international trade minister, as leader of the Alliance Party, peddling the same myth, using the same misinformation.

Is the reason the Conservatives refuse to act because the Conservative politics of fear fed fuel to the problem we have today?