House of Commons Hansard #6 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was seniors.

Topics

The Environment
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Ève Péclet La Pointe-de-l'Île, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this first opportunity I have to thank the people of La Pointe-de-l'Île for choosing me to represent them in the House of Commons.

I am also rising today to voice my concern about Canada's future, particularly in terms of the environment. This government continues to cut millions of dollars from the fight against climate change and is still refusing to meet its international obligations. Canada's per capita level of greenhouse gas emissions is among the highest in the world.

Even the largest energy company in Canada, Suncor, has described the government's approach as ineffective and has said that this approach will result in increased costs for consumers in the long term. On Monday, this same company called on the government to adopt stricter measures for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

This government's attitude continues to marginalize Canada within the international community because of its poor environmental policies. The government must therefore recognize the urgent need to invest in the fight against climate change rather than granting tax breaks to companies that pollute our environment.

Flood Prevention
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, I know all parliamentarians join me in expressing our sympathy to the flood victims who are dealing with the devastating flooding that has gripped Canadians.

We want to express our thanks to all municipal leaders, firefighters, emergency measures staff, the countless volunteers and military personnel for their tireless efforts this spring.

I want to thank the Prime Minister for his commitments to this year's flood fight.

Flooding has been a challenge for Manitobans, including those in my riding of Selkirk—Interlake. Flooding is impacting the north Red River, Lake Manitoba, Lake St. Martin, the Shoal lakes and Lake Winnipeg.

Constituents in my riding have legitimate questions about the management of flood control infrastructure in Manitoba, such as the Jenpeg, Fairford and Shellmouth dams and the Portage Diversion, which are operated by the province of Manitoba. These structures have created intentional flooding.

While we cannot prevent natural disasters, the Manitoba government needs to look at long-term flood prevention strategies which help communities north of Winnipeg. The province of Manitoba needs to be grateful for the sacrifices made by flood victims, gracious in how it treats them and generous in how they are compensated.

Aboriginal Affairs
Statements By Members

June 9th, 2011 / 2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Greg Rickford Kenora, ON

Mr. Speaker, on this, my first occasion to rise in the House in this session, I want to thank the constituents of the great Kenora riding for re-electing me. I will continue to be a strong voice for Kenora in this government.

Three years ago, on Wednesday, June 11, the Prime Minister stood in the House and asked for forgiveness from aboriginal peoples for Canada's role in the Indian residential school system. This apology was an historic event and was a significant step toward reconciliation with aboriginal peoples.

We will continue to work closely with former students, their families and their communities to build a new relationship based on the knowledge of our shared past and renewed respect for each other.

This anniversary is an opportunity for all Canadians to remember and reflect on the lessons taken from the Indian residential school experience.

We must all renew our commitment to work together to build a better future and to make a meaningful and sustainable improvement in the lives of aboriginal people throughout Canada.

Beaches—East York
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Kellway Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in this chamber today to speak for the first time as the member for Beaches—East York. I am incredibly proud to do so and I am incredibly grateful to the people of Beaches—East York for the privilege to serve as their representative in the House.

On May 2, the people of Beaches—East York said to me, “Go forth to represent the values and priorities of this community in the House of Commons. Do your utmost to build a generous and compassionate country—a country worthy of those who have gone before us and of those that we have brought into this world”.

I look forward to that challenge and to working along side all those in the House who share in it.

There are many to whom I owe thanks, but most certainly we only get to this place with the support of those who love us. Therefore, I reserve my deepest thanks for my parents and my kids, Emily, Hannah and Rory, and my wife Donna who does the heavy lifting back home so that I might be free to do my best for Beaches—East York in this House.

Birthday Congratulations
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Ted Opitz Etobicoke Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today in recognition of His Royal Highness, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh on the occasion of his 90th birthday tomorrow.

The Duke of Edinburgh supports Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in her work and duties, but also serves as the president or patron of more than 40 Canadian organizations. I wish to highlight the Duke of Edinburgh's honorary military positions within the Canadian Forces.

He is Colonel-in-Chief of the following: the Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa; the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada; the Royal Canadian Army Cadets; The Royal Canadian Regiment; the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry (Wentworth Regiment); and, The Seaforth Highlanders of Canada.

During more than 20 royal tours, the Duke of Edinburgh has actively promoted the Canadian armed forces and His Royal Highness has travelled throughout Canada meeting people from all cultures and regions.

On behalf of all Canadians, I wish the Duke of Edinburgh a happy birthday.

Claude Léveillée
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Pierre Dionne Labelle Rivière-du-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is with great sadness that we learned today of the death of one of the greatest singer-songwriter-composers of his generation, Claude Léveillée.

A pioneering crafter of Quebec song, this great artist has left behind lyrics and melodies that will forever resonate in the collective memory of Quebeckers. We will remember this intense songwriter, with his deep voice, seated at his piano, singing to us about his loves, his Frédéric, his nostalgic piano tunes, his inner self, his freedom.

On behalf of the New Democratic Party, I offer my sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Léveillée, and I pay tribute to this legend who made such a huge contribution to enriching Quebec culture.

And the member sang a Claude Léveillée song:

“Je me fous du monde entier...”

Detroit River International Crossing
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Jeff Watson Essex, ON

Mr. Speaker, in the next phase of Canada's economic action plan, re-tabled by our finance minister this week, our government committed to take continued steps with the state of Michigan, the U.S. and Ontario governments to advance the construction of the new DRIC bridge at the Windsor-Detroit gateway and trade corridor.

We are pleased to see the governor of the state of Michigan has given his support to the plan and is currently moving forward with legislation.

While our Conservative government has demonstrated a strong, ongoing and active commitment to this infrastructure priority, including in our budgets, opposition members have not. Canadians expect and want action not talk.

I call upon all members of this House, especially New Democrats, to support and vote for our plan. We encourage our counterparts in Michigan to help us move this project along quickly for the shared economic, trade and security benefits of our two nations.

Tourism Week
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, this being Tourism Week, I would like to take a moment to recognize the important contribution made by Canada's tourism sector.

From coast to coast to coast, tourism is a $64 billion enterprise. This important industry contributes to the growth of new businesses of all sizes and employs over 650,000 Canadians.

My riding of Ottawa—Vanier—and I would like to take this opportunity to thank my constituents for placing their trust in me for the seventh consecutive time—has over 700 businesses related to tourism, with more than 6,000 employees.

Canada is blessed in its natural beauty and its cultural diversity.

I wish to thank all employees in the tourism sector. Their warm hospitality will be felt again this summer when it comes time to welcome the millions of visitors from our own country and around the world to Ottawa and the rest of Canada.

Auditor General of Canada
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Leon Benoit Vegreville—Wainwright, AB

Mr. Speaker, after serving a decade in the role, Sheila Fraser has retired from her position. On behalf of all Canadians, I thank Ms. Fraser for her dedication as Auditor General of Canada.

Whether it was conditions on reserves or the sponsorship scandal, nothing slipped the unfailing eye of Ms. Fraser.

As the Prime Minister said:

She has made an outstanding contribution in support of Parliamentary decision-making, increased accountability and transparency, and strengthened management of the public service. Ms. Fraser’s service to Canada and Canadians exemplifies the very best of public service.

I fully agree with that.

I would invite all members to join me and thank her for her commitment, dedication and great service to this country.

Workplace Safety
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Glenn Thibeault Sudbury, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is with a heavy heart that I rise today to honour the lives of two Sudbury miners who were killed last night as a result of a tragic workplace accident at the Stobie Mine in my riding of Sudbury.

Both men were dedicated family men whose lives were taken from us far too soon. My thoughts and prayers are with their families, friends, co-workers and other members of my community as they try to cope with this shocking and devastating loss.

This is also a heartbreaking reminder of the danger miners put themselves in every day. We can only hope that the investigation into this accident leads to a safer workplace for workers, especially in the mining industry.

I believe I speak for all members of Parliament and extend our condolences to those mourning this very tragic loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

Protection of Children
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Kyle Seeback Brampton West, ON

Mr. Speaker, I thank the voters of Brampton West who elected a Conservative federal member for the first time since 1988.

There are few actions more despicable than committing a sexual offence against a child. I have just learned that an individual convicted of unspeakable crimes against children has been sent to a halfway house next to a school. This is unbelievable but, sadly, not uncommon.

Our government took action to protect children from sex offenders by strengthening the National Sex Offender Registry. However, more must be done.

Our government will ensure that those who commit crimes against children are punished by imposing strict mandatory minimum sentences. Anyone who commits a sexual offence against a child will never get a criminal record suspension.

These measures could already be in place but they were opposed and delayed by the NDP. As the father of two young children, I call on the opposition to support our legislation to protect children from sexual abuse when it is introduced.

Auditor General's Report
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General explained at length how lucrative it is to be friends with a Conservative minister. For example, the former industry minister sat down with two friends to share tens of millions of dollars. There were no witnesses, no documentation, no records. The auditor himself said that he has never seen anything like it and that he is scandalized. Is this sponsorship scandal 2.0?

How is it that, with such a poor track record, this same minister is now responsible for budget cuts?

Auditor General's Report
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, on the contrary, these municipal projects were actually approved by the federal government and the municipalities. All of these projects were announced publicly and appear on the website. However, the Auditor General made several recommendations to improve the process in the future and we accept all of those recommendations.

Auditor General's Report
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, considerable sums of money were divided and allocated by the three wise men of Deerhurst.

There has been no accountability, no transparency and no rationale for decisions, which for the most part were completely unrelated to the stated objective.

This is truly the Liberal way of Chuck Guité and Alfonso Gagliano.

How could the Prime Minister give carte blanche to the minister? How could the minister choose 32 projects by himself without providing the slightest rationale? And how is it that he is still here?

Auditor General's Report
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the NDP member's statements are entirely false. The reality is that these 32 projects were published. They are on the website. Every dollar was accounted for by this government. As I said before, the Auditor General made several recommendations to improve the process in the future and we accept those recommendations.