House of Commons Hansard #14 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was post.

Topics

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. While listening to the debate through night, I noticed the members were always calling on these emails they had received from various constituents.

I find it shocking that Scouter Tim would have said days ago that the members of the other party were holding up the debate. Would the member table the email from Scouter Tim so we could see what it actually says?

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Bruce Stanton

The member will know that members are not obliged to table documents in this particular manner. If the member has a question, he can certainly rise on questions and comments.

The hon. member for London West.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

Conservative

Ed Holder London West, ON

Mr. Speaker, let me just read that, because I think that is a fair comment. He wrote, “I'm a scout leader with the 68th London scouts group. We have a group of scouts that will be attending a jamboree in B.C. this July 9th through 16th. One of the big events for scouts is the trading of crests. Unfortunately, the crests that have been designed and made specifically for this jamboree are being held up in a Canada Post depot. The youth have saved money through fundraising in order to purchase the crests and now there's a good chance that they will attend this once in a lifetime event and not have the crests they were going to trade.”

Members opposite should know that after all is said and done, there is a lot more said than done, and that is very disappointing.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am glad the hon. member took the time to read it.

I certainly support the scout movement. However, it is clear that scouter Tim did not blame the members opposite. The member did, and I would ask that he withdraw his statement.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Bruce Stanton

Order. That is a matter of debate.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

NDP

Paulina Ayala Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, to answer the hon. member's question, it is up to Canada Post—

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Bruce Stanton

Order, please. The hon. member for Langley is rising on a point of order.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

Conservative

Mark Warawa Langley, BC

Mr. Speaker, just days ago we had a promise from members opposite that decorum would be returned to this House. As my colleague was trying to answer questions, there was a great degree of heckling from the other side. That is not what was promised, so we need the return of decorum in this House.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, the member from the Conservative Party might have noticed, as we all did, that the version read before did not correspond to the version he actually received. That is what we call something not adjacent to the truth. We were just trying to get to the part of the email he said he was quoting, but unfortunately it is not in the email. He was making it up.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 2011 / 6:55 a.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Bruce Stanton

We have received sufficient interventions on this point. These are points of debate and I would encourage members to use their time during questions and comments to put questions to previous speakers.

The hon. member for Honoré-Mercier.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

NDP

Paulina Ayala Honoré-Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, to answer the hon. member's question, I am saying that it is up to Canada Post and the government to respond to customers who are being held hostage. It is not up to the workers who continued to do their work while they were on strike. The question was not clear. It is Canada Post and the government that must take responsibility for the fact that the crown corporation is not operating at the moment.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 6:55 a.m.

NDP

Jean Rousseau Compton—Stanstead, QC

Mr. Speaker, I see that the calendar on the table says June 23. That should be corrected since today is June 24. Last night, few francophone members spoke but some will this morning. I will speak in French from start to finish. I would appreciate it if questions were asked in French given that this is Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day.

We remain optimistic about the resolution of the dispute but, as the hon. member for Chicoutimi—Le Fjord said earlier, both parties must demonstrate goodwill. When both parties are present, they must frankly discuss the problem and resolve it.

For several weeks and a few days, the government has been wanting to violate the fundamental rights of Canadian workers, not just those who are unionized but also those who are not. The working class's battle to have its rights respected is not something new. Unfortunately, with this Conservative government, it is an ongoing battle.

The government is quick to attack fundamental rights such as the right of association and freedom of expression, which are guaranteed by section 2 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, as well as, by extension, the right to peacefully negotiate working conditions in accordance with the fundamental principle of labour relations—industrial peace. We wonder how far the government will go. All night long, the Conservatives have been nasty, arrogant and sarcastic and have shown a total lack of respect for human rights. That is what this is all about.

Freedom of association is the freedom to combine together for the pursuit of a common purpose. This fundamental freedom, along with freedom of opinion and expression, come within the realm of civil and political human rights, which find affirmation in the Constitution. The government must respect this right and can only infringe it by a rule of law, within limits that are reasonable and demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society. These are not my words, but those of Justice Bastarache, in Dunmore v. Ontario.

It is mind-boggling. I have been awake for 24 hours. Furthermore, I am somewhat intimidated by the quality of the interventions by all these people around me. This is my first speech. I would like to say hello to the members of my fans club who, I am sure, are watching me at 7 a.m. on CPAC.

Yesterday, I listened to the hon. member for Beauce try to give us a crash course in economics and quote such outdated and utopian theorists that you would think we were back in the 19th century. I get the impression that his colleague, the labour minister, attended the same university, because she wants to take us straight back to the 18th century when it comes to labour relations. It might be time for the members opposite to come up to speed by studying more pragmatic theorists given that modern civilization has evolved. Extreme capitalism is dead. That is what started the economic crisis. They are going backwards.

When a bill is introduced to dictate working conditions that are less favourable than those previously negotiated, and without acknowledging this fact and claiming the contrary, it makes us wonder where the government has been these past few weeks. Is there a pilot on board? That is how I would summarize the past few days.

We are moving towards an abyss, the suffering of the working class. The gap between the ruling class and the working class is widening once again. What will happen? Which services will be privatized in the coming weeks and months? What is this government's hidden agenda? Will it be honest with us?

Through no fault of their own, postal workers are often seen as spoiled public servants. I would like to challenge a government member to do the work of the letter carriers, day after day. Perhaps then they would understand the frustration of these workers, who do not deserve what is being imposed on them.

Yesterday, while listening to the leader of the official opposition, I said to myself that it was a great speech by a great democrat. I am proud to be a member of this party, which defends the interests of all Canadians. Is there anyone opposite who will rise and say that today they wish to stand up for the working class or the middle class and all the interests of Canadians?

I am a little nervous, and I will end on that note. Thank you for listening. This is what this is all about.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 7:05 a.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, I just wanted to remind the hon. member that there are two official languages in Canada and we can ask questions and give our answers in whichever of the languages we are most comfortable with. I listened intently to every word the member said. I realize he is tired, but we are quite refreshed on this side.

There were no solutions raised. There was no talk about how to solve the problem. We can continue this debate for four or five days. After today, I will be back on Monday. We can keep right on going and still be here on July 1. What are the solutions? We can stand here and talk about ideology all we want, but what are the solutions to the problem we are having, on behalf of the 33 million Canadians, including the 55,000 postal workers?

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 7:05 a.m.

NDP

Jean Rousseau Compton—Stanstead, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is quite simple. The solution is at the bargaining table. Let us remove the locks and make the parties sit down with one another.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act
Government Orders

June 24th, 7:05 a.m.

NDP

Jonathan Tremblay Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like my colleague to tell me what he thinks of the fact that the government wants the workers to return to work when there is a lockout. Does he think that it would make more sense to have the employer allow the workers to work?