House of Commons Hansard #69 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was custody.

Topics

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands
Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, rather than trying to score political points on this issue, the member perhaps should have been at the Natural Resources committee yesterday where we heard about these very issues.

In fact, if he had been at question period yesterday, he would also know that the minister said we are working with our partners. In the Netherlands, Petten reactor is going to be upping its production by 50%. The Australians are coming on line with their reactor much quicker than anticipated. The minister is working with the international partners to deal with this situation.

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

Nice try, Mr. Speaker, but here are the real facts. The Dutch Petten reactor has a radioactive leak. It will shut down for a month on July 18. It is going to be shut down for a further six months this January, and its licence to operate expires in March. The Australian OPAL reactor was built strictly for its own market. Its processing plant is not yet commissioned; that will take 6 to 12 months. Currently Australia does not supply medical isotopes to anyone. It imports 100% of its domestic supply.

When will the minister level with Canadians and start treating this crisis with the honesty and the urgency it deserves?

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands
Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, he is one to be talking about honesty. He should be trying to deal with the issue instead of fearmongering and trying to scare Canadians.

We know in fact that the Petten reactor in the Netherlands is going to increase production by 50%. South Africa has increased its supply as well. These commitments are similar to the commitment we made to other countries when they were having problems. We are working internationally with people to deal with this situation.

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, sadly the Minister of Health has failed Canadians. Her message to the provinces is, “You're on your own, figure out how to get along without isotopes”. The provinces are scrambling to extend hours for testing and dealing with expensive alternatives, transferring patients, the clinical use of research scanners and now the skyrocketing isotope crisis.

Will the Minister of Health commit today to reimburse the provinces and territories for every single dollar incurred because of the government's incompetence?

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, while Health Canada does not regulate the price of pharmaceutical products, including isotopes, we continue to work with the provinces and territories on addressing the shortage.

As a matter of fact, we are taking action now. We are ensuring that the testing is available for Canadians by quickly approving alternatives. To date we have approved two clinical trials and ten special access program requests. The clinical trials were approved in a record three days, and we are approving special access program requests in just 24 hours.

We are helping the provinces and territories triage and manage their supply through an expert guidance document.

We are taking action, and I would appreciate the member--

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. member for St. Paul's.

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member knows that will not get any isotopes within this year. The crisis is right now, and the Minister of Health has done nothing to prevent it, to fix it or to reassure the patients needing these lifesaving tests that are being cancelled because of the government's incompetence.

Saskatoon is getting one-eighteenth of its usual weekly allotment. Peterborough is operating at 10% capacity. Kingston has been forced to operate with 25% of its normal supply.

The government had 18 months to develop a made in Canada plan. Why does it continue to abdicate the federal responsibility--

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health.

Medical Isotopes
Oral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, as a physician, the member should know that about 75% of the actual testing can be provided with alternatives. Other isotopes are available now. Thallium or Iodine-123 and gallium can help the provinces manage their supplies.

It is very important that we work together with everyone involved. This is an international issue. We have been engaging our provincial and territorial counterparts, the U.S. secretary of health, as well as the medical community and experts in the field.

My colleague, the Minister of Natural Resources, has been working closely with isotope producing countries. We are taking action now, and we would appreciate the member's support in that.

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, Jacques Lyrette of Développement Économique-CLD Gatineau has said, “While the federal government is pouring millions of dollars into the city of Ottawa, its neighbour, Gatineau, is getting nothing but crumbs.” According to Mr. Lyrette, neither the Liberals nor the Conservatives ever give Gatineau its fair share.

The Conservatives promised Gatineau the earth. When will they have the courage to keep their promise and rebalance the amounts of money invested on both sides of the Ottawa River?

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Pontiac
Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, like my colleague, I heard that comment this morning, and I was a bit surprised.

While my colleague, the member for Hull—Aylmer, was in power, he managed to have a road built through Gatineau Park, at a cost to Canadian taxpayers of roughly $50 million. Just recently, Highway 5 was built, costing Canadian taxpayers $32 million. The Government of Canada has also contributed to a sports complex. It has been announced that the Palais des Congrès, the conference centre, in Gatineau will be renovated, thanks to another federal contribution.

My colleagues need to wake up once in a while and take a look at—

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Gatineau.

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, for 23 years, we have been waiting for the Science and Technology Museum in Gatineau. For 13 years, we have been waiting for phase II of the Centre régional d'archives de l'Outaouais in Gatineau. There are no research centres in Gatineau, but there are 27 in Ottawa. In short, they always make big promises, but they do not keep them.

Conservatives and Liberals: same inaction.

When will the government take real action for Gatineau?

Infrastructure
Oral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Pontiac
Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am used to this.

Bloc Québécois: all talk, no action.

Goods and Services Tax
Oral Questions

June 5th, 2009 / 11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Claude DeBellefeuille Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the ineffable Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and to the Minister of National Revenue said that this government has gotten along very well with the Government of Quebec about harmonizing the GST. However, it is no secret that Quebec is not at all satisfied with the lack of compensation when it harmonized provincial and federal taxes.

If there was an agreement, as the parliamentary secretary claims, why did he say that one day there will be an agreement?