House of Commons Hansard #82 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was children.

Topics

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, if the opposition has some common-sense ideas for amending Bill C-31, I am open to hearing them. With the reform we are proposing, the system will continue to be the fairest in the world. Canada is going to provide protection for real refugees within two months, instead of two years under the current system. At the same time, we are going to address the wave of fake claims for asylum from democratic countries. If the opposition has any ideas for achieving that goal, we are open to hearing them, but we have to enhance the integrity of Canada's immigration system.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, they have no time for refugees but they have all the time in the world for oil executives.

Conservatives have attacked people who are concerned about jobs and the planet as environmental radicals and now they have placed environmentalists and aboriginals on a terrorist watch list. To Conservatives, a maple syrup boycott and a cardboard cut-out of Ontario's environment minister are now on the same threat level as al-Qaeda.

When will this minister stop using counter-terrorism as an excuse to silence Canadians?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North
Alberta

Conservative

Michelle Rempel Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, as the member opposite knows, our country has an excellent environmental regulatory system in which the public can participate in a law-abiding way. However, any groups or individuals who resort to criminality or violence will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

My colleague opposite knows that we have a very robust environmental regulatory system here and policies whereby we invest in climate change or adaptation research. Yet she goes and lobbies against our jobs in the U.S.

That begs the question: Does she believe in job creation or is she a job-creation denier?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, it is not a robust environmental regulation for long.

Enbridge wanted approval before it told Canadians where it would build its pipeline. However, the government wants to go even further and shut Canadians out of the process altogether. Instead of actually submitting a route, companies will soon only have to submit a name for their pipeline and the Conservatives will approve it. Maybe it will be the protecting bitumen from Internet predators pipeline. I am sure the Conservatives will enjoy rubber-stamping that one.

Why are the Conservatives changing the review process? Why are they weakening protection for our communities?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands
Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, the priority of our government remains jobs and economic growth in this country. The northern gateway pipeline is currently going through a careful and comprehensive review process. The member opposite knows that.

We want projects that are safe. We want thousands of new jobs in this country. We want to open up new export markets. We do not want unnecessary delays. Perhaps the NDP should be better known as the no development party.

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

February 16th, 2012 / 2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Costas Menegakis Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is no secret that our immigration system, as the most fair and generous in the world, is open to abuse. Whether it is by bogus refugee claimants coming to receive taxpayer-funded benefits, human smugglers or foreign criminals, Canadians, including my constituents of Richmond Hill, have no tolerance for those who abuse our generosity and take unfair advantage of our country.

Can the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism please inform this House how the act, the protecting Canada's immigration system act, would help stop the abuse of our immigration system?

Citizenship and Immigration
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast
Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney Minister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, I thank that member for the question and the good work done by him on the immigration committee.

The reforms we propose today, in addition to the bill of 2010, would allow bona fide victims of persecution who are now forced to wait two years for protection to get a hearing before the IRB and get certainty of protection in two months' time. So someone who comes off a plane from Iran with the signs of torture on his back would get certainty of protection in Canada; but instead of taking several years to deport fake asylum claimants, they would be gone in a few weeks.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Claude Patry Jonquière—Alma, QC

Mr. Speaker, workers who are losing their jobs should only have to wait a maximum of 28 days for their employment insurance claim to be processed, but because of the cuts this government made, families have to wait five times longer. The number of workers who are waiting for their employment insurance benefits has doubled because the minister cut jobs in the processing centres.

What does the minister have to say to families who cannot pay their bills because of these irresponsible cuts?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we sympathize with those who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. That is why we are trying to get their benefits to them as quickly as possible. After we saw an unexpected rise in EI claims in January, we added several hundred people to the EI process to speed up the processing of claims.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, the reality is that Canadian families and their children continue to struggle under this minister's watch.

New Democrats are touring the country to hear how waiting months for employment insurance is hurting families, families who cannot make their rent because their EI cheques are delayed, families who are wondering when help will come.

Why can this minister not address the real problem? Why can she not see how her cuts are hurting the families who desperately need their employment insurance?

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk
Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, families do get their EI cheques as quickly as possible. That is why, after we saw in December and January an unexpected rise in EI claims, we added several hundred people to the EI process, and it is working.

The backlog is being whittled down. People are getting their cheques faster. We will continue to improve our performance for Canadians who need it.

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, we have learned that Canadian Heritage wants to use testimony received by the Standing Committee on Official Languages as a formal consultation mechanism leading up to the next Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality. That violates the Official Languages Act and constitutes fraudulent use of testimony that was given in good faith. The department must hold its own consultation in due form.

Will the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages commit to holding a formal consultation about the next roadmap, as required by law?

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam
B.C.

Conservative

James Moore Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, we certainly did hold consultations before tabling the roadmap a few years ago, and our commitment remains the same. We will hold further consultations. I will be in New Brunswick near my opposition colleague's riding to hold consultations and participate in round tables. We held consultations across the country. We will continue to do so with our provincial counterparts next summer as we fulfill our commitment to both protect and celebrate Canada's two official languages.

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, last November, the government made a hasty announcement that it would create a committee to study the issue of the use of French in Quebec companies governed by federal law. It is now February 16, and there is still no sign of a committee—no chair, no budget, no mandate. In short, the government is not interested in francophone issues.

The NDP introduced a balanced bill that meets workers' expectations. Will the Conservatives stop dragging their feet and support our bill?

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Halton
Ontario

Conservative

Lisa Raitt Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, French is an integral part of our history, our identity, our daily lives, and it is one of the founding languages of Canada. Our government is committed to promoting and protecting the French language in Canada.

We will launch a consultative committee and assess whether a problem exists with the language of work in federally regulated private sector businesses, and the committee will seek to use stakeholders to examine whether employees of federally regulated private sector businesses in Quebec are fully able to work in French.

Our government is proud of Canadian bilingualism and our cultural diversity, and we remain fully committed to promoting the French language in Canada and abroad.