House of Commons Hansard #100 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was senators.

Topics

G8 and G20 Summits
Oral Questions

12:15 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean
Ontario

Conservative

John Baird Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, my colleague from the Department of Foreign Affairs has already spoken to the compensation plans that are available, and the deadline was just yesterday. They will be processed as expeditiously as possible.

This government has made unprecedented investments in the city of Toronto, whether it is in public transit, or in arts and culture or in municipal infrastructure. No government has done more to support Toronto's infrastructure in five short years than this government has done.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

12:15 p.m.

Bloc

Jean Dorion Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian government's foreign affairs policy on the continent of Africa is becoming more and more obvious: it is giving up and could not care less about it. After removing seven African countries from the priority list for development assistance, the government is now preparing to shut down other embassies in Africa.

Can the Minister of Foreign Affairs confirm that no Canadian embassies in Africa will be shut down?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

12:15 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas)

Yes I can, Mr. Speaker. Every year the Government of Canada property holdings reviews our embassies abroad. An ongoing program is in place to review property and decisions are made based on value principles applied in these decisions.

As part of the ongoing review, 12 to 15 properties every year are sold on average in any given year. The normal practice is to replace them with a more appropriate property.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

12:15 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Standing Committee on Official Languages wants to meet with officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs to get to the bottom of the lack of French-language services at Canadian embassies abroad. The committee clerk has tried several times to speak to an appropriate official at the department, but he still has yet to hear back from the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Can the minister explain his department's silence, or is he the one trying to avoid something that cannot be justified?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

12:15 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas)

Mr. Speaker, the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade regularly reviews our bilingualism policy as it is applied in missions abroad. Bilingualism is an important component in Canada's international relations and we place great efforts to promote linguistic duality.

While I am disappointed by the department's overall grade in this past year and by complaints as cited by my colleague, the official language investigators have noted very high levels of service availability—

Foreign Affairs
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

Conservative

The Deputy Speaker Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Davenport.

Haiti
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, for months Haitians have been dealing with a serious outbreak of cholera. This epidemic has killed over 1,000 people and 10 months after the earthquake, up to one million people still live in tents and lack clean water, the source of the cholera outbreak.

Why is the government not showing leadership in this crisis? Why are we not hearing anything from the government on this issue? When will the government report to Parliament and give us an update on this crisis?

Haiti
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

Durham
Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, we are very concerned. The latest report indicates that 1,100 lives have been lost and 18,000 people have been hospitalized.

In fact, it is my pleasure to inform my colleague that today we are adding $4 million to combat this cholera outbreak. We are working with organizations such as the Pan American Health Organization and UNICEF. We will be providing more prevention campaigns, more medical supplies and clean water.

Haiti
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

Pablo Rodriguez Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, Haiti deserves better.

Those are empty, hollow words. They are committing to commit. Announcing an announcement. But an announcement, even if it is repeated 1,000 times, does not make medications, doctors or potable water appear. An announcement does not save lives.

The Conservatives promised millions of dollars after the earthquake and only a small portion of that has been sent. They reached out and then pulled back. Are they going to do the same thing once again?

Haiti
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

Durham
Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, again I announce that Canada has committed $5 million to fight the outbreak of cholera. This money is being disbursed. In fact, millions of litres of water are being provided. We have organizations on the ground.

As members know, this is a growing outbreak and we will continue to monitor the situation.

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

NDP

Olivia Chow Trinity—Spadina, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canada brings in 200,000 temporary foreign workers and the government does nothing while their right to join unions is denied. The United Nations has just ruled on a complaint filed by the UFCW that Canada is trampling on the human rights of these migrant workers. Canadians believe it is illegal to exploit workers and deny them the right to organize.

Will the government make respect for human rights a condition for provincial participation in the temporary foreign workers program?

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

St. Catharines
Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, this government will take no lectures or direction from the opposition in dealing with the temporary foreign worker program. It is, in fact, a program that has been successful from one side of this country to the other. It puts people from other countries to work in circumstances when we cannot fill positions here in Canada.

It allows them to help their families. It allows them to help their country. It allows them to lead lives that they would not have been able to lead had they had to stay in their countries. This is a program that works. Province after province after province is asking us to make this program bigger because of how successful it has been.

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

NDP

Olivia Chow Trinity—Spadina, ON

Mr. Speaker, the best way to protect vulnerable migrants and help them go after those who exploit them is to let them stay in Canada permanently.

Migrants are often targeted by crooks and traffickers. Some are sold to the sex trade. I see today the Conservatives are having a press conference on vulnerable migrants. Will the minister commit to provide real protection to the most vulnerable migrants and let them stay in Canada so they can go after those who exploit them?

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

12:20 p.m.

St. Catharines
Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, every temporary foreign worker who comes to this country does so under Canadian labour law. It is upheld and enforced. It is there to protect those who come to work in this country. If the member has a specific example that she would like to bring forward, I can say that the minister and the ministry will act immediately on it to ensure that no labour law has been broken.

This program is for our country. This program is for the foreign workers. In fact, some say it is the best foreign aid program we have in this country.

Democratic Reform
Oral Questions

November 19th, 2010 / 12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Guy Lauzon Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Liberal-Bloc-NDP coalition failed Canadians when it chose to stand in the way of rapid passage for our Conservative government's Senate term limits bill. Time and again our government has reintroduced legislation to make Canada's Senate more democratic and accountable, only to be thwarted by the opposition.

Could the Minister of State for Democratic Reform please tell the House and all Canadians why Senate reform is so important to our government?