House of Commons Hansard #108 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was refugees.

Topics

Protecting Canada's Immigration System Act
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

Conservative

Bryan Hayes Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, the reality is that the minister has no power to arbitrarily designate a safe country. Factors that would lead to a country being designated safe would be clearly outlined in both law and regulations. I will give an example. In a specified ministerial order there are quantitative factors that clearly identify that 60% or more claims from the country are withdrawn or abandoned. If 75% or more are rejected by the independent Immigration and Refugee Board, that would be considered reasons for a country to be designated as a safe country.

Protecting Canada's Immigration System Act
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

St. Catharines
Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the member spoke at length and in-depth about the issue of responding quickly in terms of regulation and what the bill would do to designate safe countries. Based on the riding that he is from, I would like him to comment on the input he has received from his community on the issue of designated safe country and the response from his community in terms of its support for this bill.

Protecting Canada's Immigration System Act
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

Conservative

Bryan Hayes Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, being a border community, Sault Ste. Marie deals with a lot of immigration issues but the number one issue seems to be the length of time to process applications. This bill would speed up that process. Needless to say, the cost-saving measures in the bill, $1.65 billion over five years, would be money that could be more adequately used in other areas.

Protecting Canada's Immigration System Act
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, we know this bill would deprive some refugees of the right to apply for permanent residence for five years and, therefore, the reunification with their families, including their children. Why on the earth would the government be blocking family reunification, which has always been a very important element? This bill would actually be a roadblock to family reunification. I would ask the member what the justification is for putting a further obstacle to family reunification.

Protecting Canada's Immigration System Act
Government Orders

2 p.m.

Conservative

Bryan Hayes Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, I disagree with the premise of that comment. If that is a concern, then that is something that can be discussed fully in committee. I have great respect for the members on the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration and if that is a legitimate concern it will be addressed.

Blainville-Boisbriand Armada
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

Charmaine Borg Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am truly proud to rise in the House today to commend a hockey team in my riding, the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada, and the terrific season they have had.

From the beginning of the season, the Armada surprised and enchanted fans, the public and sports commentators alike through their remarkable climb and final rank among the best teams of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The team even won the western division title with 20 point more than the other teams. The players, coaches and entire staff are all responsible for their tremendous success, which should inspire us all, and I would like to sincerely congratulate them.

Tomorrow afternoon, because of a bet I made with my hon. colleague from Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, I will wear an Océanic jersey, since Océanic beat the Armada in the quarter finals, but it was no cakewalk. I would like to congratulate the Rimouski Océanic, who also worked very hard this season.

I would like to tell my hon. colleague, however, that his time will come, because I know that next year, he will be the one wearing the winners' jersey and it will be the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada.

Stanley Cup Playoffs
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

David Anderson Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

Mr. Speaker, Zack Smith is living the dream of every kid who put on skates and picked up a hockey stick. The 24-year-old from Maple Creek, Saskatchewan, plays centre for the Ottawa Senators. Today he is preparing for game six in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Zack played for the Swift Current Broncos. In 2008, he was drafted by the Senators. The road to the NHL came through Manitoba and Binghamton. This season, he signed a two-year contract and played 81 of 82 games, contributing 14 goals and 26 points.

I watched Zack as a young hockey player when he and my son played together and against each other. It is great to see how far he has come.

Senators coaches call him a big, solid forward who plays hard, is physical and will do the dirty work. Zack has a blue-collar lunch-bucket work ethic, a great Saskatchewan trait he learned from his parents, Dean and Colleen. Dean recently told an Ottawa newspaper, “I have had scouts tell me that guys who make it to the NHL on talent alone are about 5%. The other 95% is desire”.

Desire, hard work and humility have made him a success. I congratulate Zack and wish him good luck.

Earth Day
Statements By Members

April 23rd, 2012 / 2 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

Mr. Speaker, April 22 is Earth Day around the world. In Canada, community groups, not-for-profit agencies, individuals and private sector companies participated in environmental projects and events, as was the case yesterday in Montreal at the march that drew 250,000 participants.

At the same time, at La TOHU in my riding, I had the opportunity to take part in one of these initiatives, the environmental forum organized by the C-Vert team. As the member for Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, I am proud to support initiatives to improve this planet for future generations.

One of the best ways to influence people is to lead by example. That is why I encourage people to do their part every day in order to ensure that Canada resumes its place as a leader in the environmental movement to protect our planet.

Earth Day reminds us that we have to improve the environment every day by applying lessons learned. Together we can build a better future.

The Budget
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Eve Adams Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, it has been a busy two weeks visiting groups in Mississauga—Brampton South, highlighting the economic action plan 2012. Great local employers like Baylis Medical benefit from our R and D investments. Weston Forest Products and Gray Tools both benefit from our low corporate taxes and the development of new international markets for their products.

The students at Philip Pocock, Derry West and St. Pio were enthused, optimistic and engaged about our nation's future. Their families are keen to see us focus on job creation, growth and long-term prosperity.

At seniors' homes and legions, seniors shared nostalgic memories and thanked our Conservative government for income-splitting provisions. That single fiscal policy change provides more money and improves the quality of life for Canada's seniors.

At the Sunnybrook veterans' wings, residents lauded the compassionate care they receive. I had a great experience joining in their music therapy on the drums.

At the Mississauga Board of Trade, where I delivered a comprehensive overview of the economic action plan 2012, employers were very supportive of our small business plan and our budget as a whole.

Léonard Otis and Gilles Roy
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Guy Caron Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to talk about the success of the Océanic or thank my colleague from Terrebonne—Blainville for her presentation, but instead I am pleased to highlight the commitment of two staunch supporters of rural life in eastern Quebec.

Léonard Otis and Gilles Roy have defended crucial causes, not just on behalf of their region, but also on behalf of all rural regions across the country. They have influenced the development of our region by working to keep villages alive and fighting for the forestry community, which has allowed people living in the Lower St. Lawrence to reap the benefits of this industry.

Léonard Otis has been a leader in land occupancy and sustainable development in eastern Quebec. Gilles Roy has been involved in all these causes, and everyone in the Lower St. Lawrence region remembers him as the leader of Operation Dignity I, II and III.

Next Saturday, April 28, Léonard Otis and Gilles Roy will receive the Université du Québec à Rimouski medal in recognition of their contribution to the development of the Lower St. Lawrence region.

Congratulations to Mr. Otis and Mr. Roy. You are models of civic engagement.

I would also like to thank UQAR. The awarding of this medal ensures that the dedication and work of Léonard Otis and Gilles Roy will never be forgotten.

Transcona Centennial Celebration
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Lawrence Toet Elmwood—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, today I want to bring to the attention of the House the centennial celebration of Transcona.

Transcona is celebrating 100 years as a community, from its roots of being founded as a repair centre for the transcontinental railroad to its diverse economic base today. Although Transcona was incorporated into the City of Winnipeg in 1972, Transcona residents still have a great sense of independence and pride in their community.

On April 12, I was proud to participate in the kickoff event for the centennial celebrations hosted by the local legion. I invite everyone to join us June 1 to June 3 in downtown Transcona to celebrate at the annual Hi Neighbour Festival.

Thanks are due to all those who have given up their personal time to prepare these events, especially the centennial committee under the able leadership of co-chairs Peter Martin, Murray Rougeau, and Barb Culbertson. I offer my congratulations. It is the passion of our residents that makes our communities flourish.

Community Contributions by Firefighters
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Harold Albrecht Kitchener—Conestoga, ON

Mr. Speaker, if we wake up to the sound of a fire alarm, Canadians know that help is only three digits away, at 911.

Today I want to honour the contribution of firefighters to our communities. Few of us would rush into a burning building to save a stranger, but these heroes do. They isolate the danger to protect neighbours and extinguish flames to protect property, and they are also often first on the scene for a medical emergency. Most importantly, they risk their lives for us.

The largest fire department in Kitchener—Conestoga belongs to the City of Kitchener but also supports volunteer departments in the townships of Wilmot, Wellesley and Woolwich.

Last year 230 staff, of whom 198 are front-line heroes, responded to almost 10,000 calls. That is more than one every hour on average. Whether a firefighter as a professional or a volunteer, they share one common trait: heroism.

I ask all members of this House to join me in honouring Kitchener firefighters Jeff Noble and Steve Jones, and all other heroes across Canada for their service and their willingness to sacrifice.

Holocaust Remembrance Day
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, today many of my colleagues and I will walk with a Canadian Holocaust survivor on this national Holocaust Remembrance Day.

I shared in the same honour last Thursday, remembering with Windsor's Jewish community at our local ceremony. The Holocaust refers to a specific genocide event, the state-sponsored systematic persecution and annihilation of European Jewry by Nazi Germany and its collaborators between 1933 and 1945.

Jews were the primary targets and victims—six million were murdered—but targets also included gypsies, the handicapped and Polish citizens because of racial, ethnic and national reasons. Homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses, Soviet prisoners of war and political dissidents also suffered grievous oppression and death under Nazi tyranny.

It is our nation's obligation to break down the walls of indifference and to shatter the conspiracy of silence. As an international community, we must stand together and act to prevent future genocide, not stand idly by and intervene when it is too late.

Today, by reflecting on this annihilation, we break that silence and honour the memory of the victims.

As Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor, said:

...I swore never to be silent whenever human beings endured suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.

Awards for Bravery
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Guy Lauzon Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to rise in the House today to recognize three constituents of Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry who have been awarded medals from His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada.

I would first like to recognize Corporal Eric Monnin, who has been awarded the medal of military valour for courageous and selfless actions under enemy fire while rendering first aid to two wounded soldiers in Afghanistan.

I would also like to recognize Constable Michael Allan Biron of the Akwesasne Mohawk Police, and Yves Soumillon, who have been awarded medals of bravery. These medals were awarded in response to their bravery when they witnessed a vehicle burst into flames after being struck by a speeding car. They both desperately tried to open the doors of the vehicle, but unfortunately were unable to pull the victims out before the flames became too strong.

It is constituents like these brave, courageous individuals who make me so proud to be the member of Parliament for Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry.

Plast
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Robert Sopuck Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette, MB

Mr. Speaker, I join with the entire Canadian Ukrainian community in commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Ukrainian scouting organization, Plast.

Officially founded by Dr. Oleksander Tysovsky on April 12, 1912, in Lviv, Plast is a Ukrainian youth organization that fosters not only leadership and teamwork skills but also a remarkable connection between youth and Ukrainian values, culture and history. For a century now, Plast has motivated Ukrainian youth around the world, including here in Canada.

Ukrainian-Canadian plastuny and plastunky will be celebrating this important milestone all year, including at summer camps and jamborees this August.

As the chair of the Canada-Ukraine Parliamentary Friendship Group, I am proud to celebrate the invaluable contributions made by the Plast scouting organization and the Ukrainian community as a whole to building our country.