House of Commons Hansard #129 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was workers.

Topics

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

February 11th, 2011 / 11:40 a.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, every time we have called for a public inquiry into the detainee issue, the Conservatives have huffed and puffed that finding the truth is just too expensive. It turns out that hiding the truth is not so cheap either. It cost Canadians $1.6 million for the government to lower a cone of silence on the issue altogether, $1.6 million to keep the public in the dark, $1.6 million to undermine parliamentary supremacy and $1.6 million to cover up torture.

When will the government end this charade and allow transparency and daylight in?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, we continue to work in good faith with our colleagues on the document review committee. This work is being done in a manner that protects legitimate national security concerns as well as international relations. This process is working well. Under the process agreed to, documents are being made available to committee members.

If NDP members were truly concerned about the fate of Taliban prisoners, they would be a part of that committee and doing their job.

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, there is no there, there. We need a search warrant for the information.

The government wants Canadians to think there is nothing to see here, but recent documents obtained by the NDP show that even ISAF was complaining about the government's handling of detainees, and that is just the tip of the iceberg, After months of secret meetings between Conservatives and Liberals, after wasting $1.6 million, Canadians are nowhere closer to the truth.

The government has broken trust with Canadians. Does it not realize what accountability is all about?

Afghanistan
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, while the other opposition parties spent months looking for evidence of mistreatment of Taliban prisoners, the NDP did nothing. If those members were that worried about Taliban prisoners, they should have been there looking at those documents and doing the job that Canadians elected them to do.

Contraband Tobacco
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Nicolas Dufour Repentigny, QC

Mr. Speaker, moving the border crossing from Akwesasne to Cornwall in June 2009 shifted tobacco smuggling to Quebec. According to the RCMP, cigarette smuggling has increased by 400% since the border crossing was moved. In two weeks, the police in Valleyfield seized 15 tons of tobacco and several vehicles.

Is the federal government going to fulfill its responsibilities and strengthen the police presence along the St. Lawrence in order to put a stop to smuggling?

Contraband Tobacco
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Oxford
Ontario

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, this government and provincial governments along the border have taken up additional roles. The seizure of contraband and illegally produced cigarettes has gone up. As the member knows, we take this issue very seriously.

We have been working with our American neighbours to patrol the Great Lakes and this has been a factor in cutting down on that.

Contraband Tobacco
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Nicolas Dufour Repentigny, QC

Mr. Speaker, anti-tobacco organizations are concerned because contraband cigarettes are sold at reduced prices to get people addicted. Contraband is not only an issue of security but also one of public health.

When will this government follow the Bloc Québécois's plan to end the scourge of contraband tobacco?

Contraband Tobacco
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Oxford
Ontario

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, we are happy to work with everyone to cut down on illegal tobacco entering the country and the illegal manufacture of tobacco in our country. That obviously impacts everyone.

We look forward to working with our colleagues across the floor as we have been with agencies inside and outside of government.

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Mark Eyking Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, just before the start of the new year, Atlantic Canada was battered by storms. Damage was extensive to wharves and breakwaters.

In just one year the Conservatives have no problem finding $600,000 for their backdrops for their photo ops. That money could save our breakwaters. If they are not fixed soon, the sea will wipe away the livelihoods of many in northern Cape Breton.

My question is for the minister. When will the government get its priorities straight and provide the funds to avoid further disasters?

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Egmont
P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, in 2006, and the hon. member knows this well, we inherited from the Liberal Party a massive backlog of needed work at all our small craft harbours. The wharves were rotting and fishers were not getting the facilities they needed to work safely.

That is why, under our economic action plan, we invested $200 million to address this backlog. Work is now under way at over 270 harbours in Canada. We are getting the job done.

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Mark Eyking Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, she is talking about 2006. This storm was in 2010.

I have another question for the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. Many wharves in my riding do not fall under the jurisdiction of DFO, but they are vital to the economic importance of these fishing communities. One such wharf in Englishtown requires urgent attention, and she knows it. If it is not fixed this spring, the boats will not be able to dock.

Will the minister commit to helping the people of Englishtown?

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Egmont
P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, departmental staff are inspecting small craft harbours to determine the extent of the damage and to estimate the repair costs.

Members can be assured that public safety is our first priority. We are working to secure all the sites and ensure that the most pressing repairs are undertaken prior to the upcoming fishery season. We will be there for our fishers.

Health
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, according to a new report, 30% of people over the age of 50 who visit private clinics must pay for colonoscopy services. Making people pay for a service that helps prevent cancer is contrary to the Canada Health Act.

The federal government has the responsibility to protect the Canada Health Act. What actions will it take to correct this situation?

Health
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Oshawa
Ontario

Conservative

Colin Carrie Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, as the member knows, our government is committed to a universal and public health care system. We support the law of the land, the Canada Health Act. That is why we have increased transfers to provinces and territories by more than 30% since we formed government, so they can continue to meet the health care needs of their residents. We have also invested significant project funding to communities across Canada.

Health
Oral Questions

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, each year the federal government receives reports on health service delivery from the provinces. However, the government has repeatedly turned a blind eye to infractions and blatantly missing information.

The federal government does not insist that the provinces comply with recording rules. Vital information is left out, meaning Canadians are left in the dark as to how funds are being spent. The Auditor General has expressed concerns in the past over lack of transparency and accountability.

We know that infractions are occurring. Will the government ensure that provincial reports accurately reflect this and will it enforce the Canada Health Act?