House of Commons Hansard #92 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was elections.

Topics

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the answer is short and the answer is “no”.

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Laurin Liu Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, in 2008, Senator Smith stated that it was necessary to demonstrate the importance we place on the environment in order to protect it, as the David Suzuki Foundation does. Now, he is saying that the David Suzuki Foundation is “promoting American businesses”.

That change was dictated by his Conservative mentors, who want to wage war on environmentalists. They are attacking Canadians who want to do something tangible to protect the environment. Why?

The Environment
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Egmont
P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, we are all aware of recent media stories that have drawn attention to suggested inappropriate involvement of certain registered charities and political activities. I can assure the House that Canada's tax system has long and clearly prohibited registered charities from participating in partisan activity and limited their political activities.

In order to protect Canadian interests, we have a duty to ensure that these organizations are operating properly and in compliance with Canadian law.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Olivia Chow Trinity—Spadina, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Sandoz drug shortage is becoming more and more dangerous every day. Canadians waiting for vital surgeries are worried. Canadians in pain are worried. They have no idea when this drug shortage will stop. Yesterday, the minister said she is disappointed. Well, that is just not good enough.

When will the drug shortage stop? When will the medications from the U.S. and Germany arrive? What is the long-term plan to deal with this drug shortage?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, we take the matter very seriously. The NDP members do not. This morning the member for Chicoutimi—Le Fjord filibustered a motion that would deal with this matter at the Standing Committee on Health.

We are doing our part to provide support to the provinces and territories in accessing alternate sources for their drugs. The member should be talking to the member from the health committee. Perhaps the motion will be supported at committee tomorrow.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Anne Minh-Thu Quach Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives are still refusing to explain the impact of this crisis on health. Sandoz was sanctioned because it failed to abide by the rules for ensuring quality. That is why it has had to scale back production.

The only solution from the Minister of Health is to import drugs. The government is doing nothing to avert further shortages or to make sure that the drugs Canadians take are safe.

Are the Conservatives finally going to live up to their responsibilities? Are they going to ensure patient safety, or are they going to assign the job to the American government?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, we have been working around the clock to provide support to the provinces and the territories. We are keenly aware of how important this matter is to patients and their families.

I want to be very clear that the provinces and territories are best placed to determine what drugs are needed in their jurisdictions. It is the provinces and territories that sign the contracts with industry, not us. As a result of their decision to buy from one sole provider, we gave them the list of companies that are already approved to provide—

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Vancouver Centre.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Health's mishandling of the drug shortage problem is unacceptable.

For the last year, Liberals have been asking for an investigation and plan to avert shortages and protect patients. The USFDA has a team working with industry to identify and avert these crises. That is what responsible government does.

Instead, Health Canada scrambles to find a band-aid solution to the Sandoz crisis. Global shortages will soon make this impossible. I am getting anxious calls from patients whose pharmacies are unable to fill their prescriptions.

What will the minister do to help them?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, I said earlier that it is the provinces and territories that are in the best place to make the determination in terms of what drugs they need for their jurisdictions. They sign the contract with the provider. They know the terms of that contract, more than we do.

They made the decision to purchase drugs from a sole provider that is not able to provide support. We are now dealing with this challenge. We have provided a list of other companies in Canada, approved to produce those drugs, to assist the provinces and territories to look at other sources to get the drugs they need.

Health
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, clearly the government has failed to protect patients’ health and safety.

In the Sandoz case, the Conservatives gave their facilities the green light only a few weeks before the American FDA cited serious contamination problems, which it had already identified in 2009.

Why are the Conservatives asleep at the switch? Why do we have to depend on the United States to provide us with assurances of quality control?

Health
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Nunavut
Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, again, as I said earlier, we take the matter very seriously. We are doing our part to provide assistance to the provinces and territories. We have identified alternate companies in Canada approved to provide the drugs that the jurisdictions are now dealing with. We will continue to do that. We are on this 24/7.

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner released a report this morning on malfeasance at HRSDC. A manager at a regional centre misused public funds to buy televisions that went to the manager's home, used a departmental car as a personal vehicle and took public resources to support the manager's own fitness business. No one was able to catch this manager for years. The commissioner said that the department is to blame.

Will the minister stand up and take responsibility for this misuse of public funds?

Human Resources and Skills Development
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka
Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement President of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, let us celebrate the good work of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner. He is doing his job under legislation that we created. It is comprehensive. It is designed to root out corruption or other bad practices.

We want to protect the good public servants who are doing a good job, but also find the malfeasors and get them out of the system. Let us congratulate the integrity commissioner.

Status of Women
Oral Questions

March 8th, 2012 / 2:50 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, we must remember our responsibilities towards the most vulnerable women.

In Montreal, the number of homeless aboriginal women, especially Inuit women, is increasing at an alarming rate. One of the few resources that helps these women is located in my riding of Laurier—Sainte-Marie, but it will have to close its doors for lack of funding.

When will this government accept its responsibilities towards all women and support the Projets Autochtones du Québec shelter?