House of Commons Hansard #73 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was sector.

Topics

Financial System Review Act
Government Orders

10:50 a.m.

NDP

Matthew Dubé Chambly—Borduas, QC

Madam Speaker, I have a very important question for my colleague.

I know that he is going to join the Standing Committee on Finance; perhaps he already has. I would like him to comment on the importance of studying this bill carefully. We all, particularly the members on this side of the House, know how important it is to have strict laws for our banking system. We also know that these are very complicated issues.

I would like my colleague to comment further on the importance of studying this bill carefully to ensure that we understand all of its complexities and are able to develop appropriate regulations.

Financial System Review Act
Government Orders

10:55 a.m.

NDP

Robert Chisholm Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Madam Speaker, the member said that it was a relevant question. I agree with him and just hope that I can provide a reasonably relevant answer.

The role of the finance committee is very important and always has been. I have not sat on that particular committee before, but I have certainly been involved at other levels of government on a committee such as the Standing Committee on Finance. I am very excited about participating on it, particularly as it relates to Bill S-5, because that committee needs to bring forward experts to talk to us about the consumer protections advertised in the bill. I say so because I do not think the way the government has gone about its consultations to date has given consumer protection advocates the opportunity to have input into this process.

At our committee, as we go through the bill item by item, we will have an opportunity to invite those experts who are out there in the field, from credit unions and consumer advocacy groups, to come in and share with us information that will help us make the bill the best piece of legislation it can be in order to get the support of members of the House.

Financial System Review Act
Government Orders

10:55 a.m.

Conservative

John Carmichael Don Valley West, ON

Madam Speaker, as we hear from the parties opposite, everyone wants to take credit for our current success with our banking system and financial institutions. Certainly, the Canadian system is sound and strong and has survived the last several years of difficult economic times in a way that organizations around the world have recognized.

I commend the member for his appointment to the finance committee, and I wonder if he could speak to some of concerns about regulation, which he recognized were technical in nature and needed to be simplified, but specifically in terms of consumer protection. I wonder if he could go a little deeper and address some specific issues that are of concern to him.

Financial System Review Act
Government Orders

10:55 a.m.

NDP

Robert Chisholm Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Madam Speaker, in my remarks I tried to address where we needed to focus some attention, and that was in regard to consumer protection.

I underlined how financial institutions are continuing to gouge their clients with increases in user fees and banking charges. We pay a charge for putting money in, we pay a charge for pulling it out, and we pay a charge for thinking about doing either of the two. I think I pay a charge every time I take my credit card out of my wallet, without even using it. It is that kind of foolishness we have to get a handle on.

We have talked about the need to address fees and interest rates that are being charged on credit cards. There is an opportunity to do that in this bill, an opportunity that the government has so far avoided. We will work at committee to try to deal with that so we can finally bring in some protection of credit card holders to stop the abuse they are receiving from financial institutions.

Quebec Ice Wine
Statements By Members

10:55 a.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Madam Speaker, once again, the federal government is creating obstacles for agricultural producers from Quebec, with standards that penalize them and favour their counterparts from other provinces. Without bothering to notify stakeholders or the Quebec Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agri-Food, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency declared that the Quebec method of producing ice wine prohibits Quebec wineries from using the “ice wine” appellation. Yet, this method, which is used because of the climate, is recognized by the Government of Quebec and the International Organization of Vine and Wine.

Representatives of the Quebec Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agri-Food confirmed In La Presse that this method in no way affects the quality of the product, as demonstrated by the international awards Quebec ice wines have won recently. The 70 or so vineyards in Quebec are not second-class vineyards. The Canadian government must recognize their method and let consumers judge the quality of the best ice wine in Canada: Quebec ice wine.

Lieutenant Governor's Winter Festival
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Conservative

Merv Tweed Brandon—Souris, MB

Madam Speaker, this weekend Brandon will celebrate the ninth annual Lieutenant Governor's Winter Festival. This festival is a multicultural celebration of all that the great constituency of Brandon—Souris has to offer. The cultures represented at the festival this year include Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, English, first nations, French Canadian, German, Irish, Métis, Scottish and Ukrainian and for the first time the festival will feature pavilions for Mauritius and the U.S.A.

Last year, 60,000 visitors attended Winterfest and the organizing committee is expecting even more this year.

I want to congratulate the committee and the many volunteers who make it such an outstanding event. I wish to recognize the executive of this year's festival: Esther Bryan, Hope Roberts, Nick Vandale, Charlotte Tosch, Dorothy McHarg, Walter Gibbons and Elaine Arvisais. Without these dedicated individuals and many other volunteers, this event would not be possible.

Brandon—Souris is well-known for its hospitality and amazing community spirit. Our government is proud to support the Winterfest. I invite all Canadians to hop on a plane, train or automobile to come to Brandon for Winterfest.

Natural Resources
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

NDP

Kennedy Stewart Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Madam Speaker, last year the NDP brought forward a motion to study refineries and oil pipelines to which the Conservatives agreed. So far the testimony has been deeply disturbing.

According to government statistics, since 1980 the number of refineries operating in Canada has declined by over 60%, from 39 refineries to 15 refineries. If this trend of losing one refinery per year continues, there may not be a single refinery operating in Canada by 2030. This puts Canada in an absurd position. We will be shipping our crude oil out to China and the U.S. and then buying it back as gasoline. This is softwood lumber on steroids.

I am proud to say that New Democrats are developing a comprehensive energy strategy that will put Canadian value-added jobs first. I call on the Conservatives to work with us on this.

Firearms Registry
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Conservative

Bob Zimmer Prince George—Peace River, BC

Madam Speaker, during our winter break I had the opportunity to meet with the North Peace Rod and Gun Club to reiterate our government's commitment to ending the long gun registry. For far too long law-abiding farmers and hunters in my riding have been made to feel like criminals for simply owning a rifle or a shotgun.

Next week will begin the final stages of ending the wasteful and ineffective long gun registry once and for all, fulfilling a long-standing commitment our government has made to law-abiding Canadians like the members of the North Peace Rod and Gun Club. By eliminating the long gun registry, we can focus our efforts on more effective ways to tackle crime and protect families and communities. Since it was created, the long gun registry has cost literally billions of dollars. This money should be used to crack down on the real criminals, not law-abiding Canadians.

Canada's Worst Driver
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Madam Speaker, I have risen in the House many times to pay tribute to constituents from my riding of Cape Breton—Canso. I have congratulated Grammy Award winners, Giller Prize winners, star athletes, political figures and humanitarians, but today I must recognize a resident who has achieved some truly unique distinction.

Last month, Shirley Sampson, from Port Caledonia, was named Canada's worst driver. Shirley was chosen from almost 1,000 Canadians who auditioned for the show and when the competition was over, it was clear that Shirley Sampson is Canada's worst driver. Shirley's daughter Janis had nominated her mother, noting that her biggest issues were backing up, using mirrors and also had problems with rotaries and intersections.

The show offers professional coaching to the contestants. Although the host often tells the winners they should never drive again, Shirley got the green light to stay on the road.

I offer my congratulations to Shirley on this dubious distinction. For the residents of Cape Breton—Canso, I offer this warning: “Heads up if you see Shirley coming”.

Digital Economy
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Conservative

Gary Schellenberger Perth—Wellington, ON

Madam Speaker, Canadians gave our government a strong mandate to stay focused on what matters: creating jobs and economic growth. Part of this plan involves creating jobs in Canada's digital economy.

I am very proud today to announce that soon the University of Waterloo Stratford Campus will expand its master of digital experience innovation program to allow a part-time option for those students who must continue working, while they strive to upgrade their education. Not only is this program strengthening Canada's digital economy, it has helped Stratford to receive the recent honourable distinction as one of the top seven intelligent communities in the world.

I am very proud of all who have helped make this campus a reality. The expansion of this masters program at the University of Waterloo Stratford Campus is good news for Canada's digital economy at home and Stratford's recognition around the world.

High-Speed Internet
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

NDP

Ruth Ellen Brosseau Berthier—Maskinongé, QC

Madam Speaker, from coast to coast to coast, many regions still do not have access to competitive high-speed Internet service. In Quebec, the people of Berthier—Maskinongé are no exception. Following a meeting between elected officials and the people of my riding, I decided it was time to take action. Although we know that the Internet is an essential tool for communication in 2012, the infrastructure to provide such service in rural areas remains inadequate.

Marjolaine Cloutier, from Saint-Justin, pays $140 a month for high-speed service, but gets mediocre-speed service instead, despite the broadband Canada program. For well-established telecommunications companies, connecting the remote regions is not always profitable. The status quo keeps their basic service profitable. It is time for high-speed Internet to be accessible and affordable to all Canadian families.

Multiculturalism
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Calgary East, AB

Madam Speaker, first, I wish the residents of Calgary East a happy new year.

My riding, as others across the country, represents the Canadian multicultural mosaic. It is home to people of the first nations, English, French, Germans, Italians, Ukrainians, Fijians, South Asians, Middle Easterners, Vietnamese, Filipinos and most recently from the continent of Africa. All these people from different cultural and religious backgrounds live and work side by side in all neighbourhoods. Their priorities are the same: stable jobs, safe streets and good schools, so they can live peacefully and raise their children. Seniors want to retire peacefully.

My riding sends a strong message to the world that those who endorse a doctrine of hatred toward others will not succeed. I am proud to represent the good folks of Calgary East.

Child Pornography
Statements By Members

February 3rd, 2012 / 11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Madam Speaker, yesterday law enforcement in Ontario announced the outcome of a province-wide child pornography investigation that resulted in 213 charges being laid against 60 individuals, including sexual assault, child luring, possession, distribution and creation of child pornography. Most important, 22 child victims were rescued and are now receiving care.

Our government has taken leadership in combatting online child exploitation by increasing penalties for child pornography and creating new offences that hold predators accountable.

I want to commend the Ontario Provincial Police Child Sexual Exploitation Section and the 23 law enforcement agencies involved in this investigation for their dedication and commitment to tracking down these predators. These investigations are long and complex and exert significant emotional and physical tolls on the officers involved.

As a nation, it is incumbent on each of us to support efforts that protect children, hold predators accountable and restore rescued victims.

Quebec Winter Carnival
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

NDP

Annick Papillon Québec, QC

Madam Speaker, the Quebec Winter Carnival is showing off its colours until February 12. This is the 58th edition of the largest winter carnival in the world. This festival provides an ideal opportunity to discover or rediscover the charms of Quebec City whose heritage is unique in North America. Every year, Bonhomme Carnaval warmly welcomes more than a million visitors who participate in hundreds of activities. Whether you attend the legendary night parade or the canoe race on the St. Lawrence River or visit Place de la famille on the Plains of Abraham, you will be entertained.

The carnival was established by the business community and today is a symbol of success that brings $30 million into Quebec City's economy. I invite everyone, young and old, to the heart of my riding, Québec, to celebrate with me in the coming days. I once worked for the Quebec Winter Carnival and I would like to personally salute and thank all the organizers of this major festival as well as the many volunteers.

Thank you everyone. Come and enjoy the carnival.

Rusk Family and Donald McNamee
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Ryan Leef Yukon, YT

Madam Speaker, I rise today on a sad occasion. A Yukon family, Brad and Valerie Rusk, their children, Gabriel and Rebekah, as well as their friend, Donald McNamee were all found dead in their home last Sunday. Officials say that carbon monoxide is likely to blame. When firefighters arrived at their home, carbon monoxide levels were 10 times the amount that would be picked up by a standard home alarm. Therefore, I encourage all Canadians to ensure they have a carbon monoxide detector in their home.

This is a tragic accident that is tough for any size of community and especially hard for a town as small and as close-knit as Whitehorse. This sad event reaches across territorial boundaries as the family and close friends who live in other provinces head north to say goodbye to their beloved family.

For the family and close friends, especially the schoolmates of Gabriel and Rebekah, our thoughts are with them. For the emergency services workers whose duty in times like this is both harrowing and emotional, we thank them for their courage and professionalism under the most heartbreaking of circumstances.