House of Commons Hansard #83 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was unemployed.

Topics

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, opening up government procurement to full reciprocity, which the Conservative government proposed to the President of the United States, is a bad idea for Quebec's economy and for Canada's because it would introduce an all-or-nothing dynamic. That is exactly what happened with softwood lumber.

Instead of creating a new problem, should the government not be working to convince American authorities to allow U.S. states and municipalities complete freedom in choosing their suppliers?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, our municipalities were the ones who said they wanted to keep the doors open. So we presented a solution. Some Canadian municipalities disagreed and said that they wanted some regions to remain under their authority. That is what some Quebec municipalities did. We also have the support of Quebec's Premier Charest, who was a leader in developing the program.

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, full reciprocity is not only a bad idea for Canadian companies, but it could also cause the United States to call for the extension of free trade to sectors that are currently exempt from NAFTA.

Is the government aware that its proposal gives the United States grounds for demanding access to sectors such as health and culture?

Canada-U.S. Relations
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, what is bad is when the doors are closed and there are no opportunities. It is very important for our workers and investors to have opportunities to submit bids for public works projects in the United States. That is why the mayors agree with us about the solution. Maybe the member should talk to those mayors.

Health
Oral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, imagine how the chiefs, the leaders and the nurses must have felt when they opened up what they thought were H1N1 kits and found body bags: 30 of them in Wasagamack First Nation, 20 in God's Lake First Nation, more in other communities.

As the chief of the AFN told me today, it demonstrated a disturbing lack of respect for first nations, Métis and Inuit people and their leaders. Body bags will not halt the spread of the virus. It will not stop the disease. These communities need help and I would call on the government to explain when it is going to start working with the leadership.

Health
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the government has been very clear. I have been very clear. The Minister of Health has been very clear. What happened was inexcusable. It was unfortunate. It was regrettable. It was incredibly insensitive. The Minister of Health has issued a statement, and I will read from part of it:

As minister of health and as an aboriginal, I am offended. To all who took offence at what occurred, I want to say that I share your concern, and I pledge to get to the bottom of it.

The Minister of Health will do just that, and she will make it public.

Health
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government is all set to bury the dead in aboriginal communities, in first nations communities, but it is not ready to cope with H1N1. Why not? People want a plan. This is the same government that refused to sign the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, that refused to build schools that students need and that even refused to respect treaties. Now it is sending them body bags. Such disrespect is unacceptable.

When will the government start working with aboriginal leaders?

Health
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I share the views of the leader of the NDP on one point, that what happened was incredibly unacceptable. I do not think the leader of the NDP is putting much light on it and he does not do himself any service by his comments at the outset of that question.

Health
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, let us stop the excuses here. There is no plan for assisting these communities to deal with the H1N1 crisis. That is the problem. If the government wants to respond to the situation of the body bags, then bring forward a plan, put it here so people can know what it is. More important, the government should be in touch with the first nations leadership of this country who are waiting to work with the people in their communities to prevent the spread of this terrible disease. Where is the plan? Put it on the table. That is the best response to the situation we are facing now.

Health
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, neither the minister nor this government offers any excuses. What happened was inexcusable and the minister is pledging on behalf of all Canadians to get to the bottom of it.

As we speak, the Minister of Health is meeting with her provincial and territorial colleagues to work on dealing with this challenge. In a statement earlier today, she said:

There is strong co-operation taking place with First Nations people at the community, regional and national levels, as well as with provinces and territories, to ensure that all Canadians are informed of and protected from the H1N1 flu virus. As Health Minister I am fully committed to these efforts."

The people of Canada can depend on the Minister of Health to get the job done.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

September 17th, 2009 / 2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives have convinced the New Democrats that their mini-reform of employment insurance would help 190,000 unemployed workers, but Canadians are not fooled. Adding benefit weeks beyond the current limit will help a lot fewer people than what is predicted.

How can we trust the Conservatives and their numbers, when they are always full of hot air?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, I remind members that this summer, Liberals and Conservatives formed a panel to find solutions to the problems of the unemployed. We submitted a number of proposals to this panel which aimed to help people, especially long-tenured workers. However, the Liberals ignored them and wanted to speak only of one thing: the idea of a 45-hour work week, which is unacceptable.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister is misleading the House.

First, the Conservatives did not submit any proposals to the EI working group. Second, she has admitted that she told her officials to stop analyzing the costs of the various Liberal proposals—I repeat, the various Liberal proposals.

When the Conservatives say that the unemployed give up when they lose their jobs, they are treating them like freeloaders.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, let us be realistic here. We submitted several proposals, including one that would help long-tenured workers, as we tabled in the House this week.

The Liberals had no interest in that. They had no interest in helping the unemployed. That is perhaps why they walked out. That is perhaps why they did not show up for the briefing yesterday on Bill C-50, which will help long-tenured workers receive five to twenty weeks more benefits, while they look for work.

We are supporting them. The Leader of the Opposition is not.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the finance minister. Does the increase in employment insurance premiums, beginning in 2011, constitute a tax increase, yes or no?