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

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Lise St-Denis Saint-Maurice—Champlain, QC

Mr. Speaker, when the Minister of International Cooperation attended a conference in London, a room was reserved for her at the conference site at a luxury hotel, but the minister insisted on being treated even more like a queen at another hotel at a much higher cost.

Will the minister confirm the name of the hotel and say whether it would be appropriate to recommend that hotel to the hon. members of the House of Commons?

Ethics
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

York—Simcoe
Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I think I have answered this question thoroughly. Of course, our government has been very focused on respecting taxpayer dollars in every regard, including ministers' offices. In fact, over the last three years, ministers' offices' budgets have been reduced by 18% by this government. That is what Canadians want to see. That is real leadership. That is what the Liberals never gave. That is why they are over there.

Elections Canada
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, every news story on election fraud brings more scandal and corruption closer to the Prime Minister. First, incriminating access logs to the Conservative database were deleted. Now it is revealed a high-level staffer in the Conservative war room has been named as having calls under investigation traced to him.

However, government denials so far sound familiar to the in-and-out scandal, where the Conservative Party had to pay fines and return $300,000 stolen from Canadians.

Why will the Prime Minister not come clean and implement a royal commission into this scandal? Or is this issue just too close to his office?

Elections Canada
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Peterborough
Ontario

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am sure that Canadians would always entertain receiving a cheque from the Liberal Party for the missing $43 million from the sponsorship scandal that the member forgot to mention.

However, as we have indicated from the get-go, unlike the Liberal member for Guelph who had to get caught for a phony call, using a phony number and a phony name, we have actually been participating with Elections Canada, assisting it as we could in this matter.

As we said earlier, we have nothing to hide in this. The Conservative Party played absolutely no role in any of the allegations that the member has just indicated. However, what I can say is that we will continue to assist Elections Canada. Will the Liberal Party?

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, the Commissioner of Official Languages has published a scathing report on the closing of the Quebec City marine rescue sub-centre. He states that the Trenton and Halifax centres cannot respond to distress calls in both official languages. There is no guarantee that people in distress will receive the essential services to which they are entitled.

Why is this government playing with the safety of Canadians by not guaranteeing that francophones in distress will have adequate services in French?

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Fredericton
New Brunswick

Conservative

Keith Ashfield Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, as stated many times before, these changes will not affect the availability of search and rescue. Certainly, the provision of bilingual services is critical to the operation of those sub-centres. The Coast Guard will continue to provide the same level of bilingual services to Canadians following the consolidation.

The Coast Guard has already identified some of the issues identified by the Commissioner of Official Languages and is implementing a plan to address those issues.

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Annick Papillon Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Commissioner of Official Languages' report is clear: it is difficult to maintain the quality of one's French in Trenton and Halifax where less than 5% of the population is francophone.

The only way to maintain adequate services in both official languages at all times is to keep the Quebec City marine rescue sub-centre open permanently. I would like to remind the Conservatives that it is an essential service that ensures the safety of people in distress. They cannot take chances with that.

Will the Conservatives take note of this report and reverse their decision to close the Quebec City marine rescue sub-centre?

Official Languages
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Fredericton
New Brunswick

Conservative

Keith Ashfield Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, that is exactly why we identified the need to have a phased-in approach in the Quebec sub-centre. We felt that because of the bilingual issue it was the best way to ensure we have the capacity. The phased-in approach will take approximately a year for the Quebec sub-centre and we will have the capacity in place to address any safety issues.

Agriculture and Agri-Food
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Malcolm Allen Welland, ON

Mr. Speaker, the 10% cut to the Agriculture and Agri-Food budget is a cut to front-line food safety. Just last week, we learned that 100 front-line food inspectors will be cut with no justification. It was these kinds of blind cuts that led to the Walkerton tragedy in Ontario and there are members of that cabinet who know what happened and the result of that. These cuts will put Canadian food safety at risk.

Will the government agree to public hearings and will it finally come clean on the impact of these unnecessary cuts?

Agriculture and Agri-Food
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster
Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, like with all government departments, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and CFIA are identifying efficiencies and the most effective use of taxpayer money. I can assure the member opposite that none of the efficiencies we have identified will in any way affect the top quality food that Canadians enjoy everyday or the safe food that our inspectors have across their desks every day.

Agriculture and Agri-Food
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Ruth Ellen Brosseau Berthier—Maskinongé, QC

Mr. Speaker, we must not make cuts to food safety services, which prevent crises such as the listeriosis outbreak.

In addition to making cuts to services that ensure the safety of Canadians, the Conservatives are also cutting funding for the rural and co-operatives secretariat, even though 2012 is the International Year of Co-operatives. It is an important service for Canadians who live in rural areas.

Why are the Conservatives cutting services to rural areas and farmers?

Agriculture and Agri-Food
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster
Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I welcome my colleague to the agricultural file. I know she will enjoy serving producers and processors across this great country, some of the most inventive and innovative people we have in this country. I know she will enjoy her role and I welcome her to it.

When it comes to food safety, this government has been all about rebuilding the food safety system after years of neglect under the Liberals. We have reinvested hundreds of millions of dollars in food safety. We have put 730 new front-line inspectors on the food safety list. We continue to do that in spite of her and her opposition party voting against those government initiatives.

Justice
Oral Questions

April 23rd, 2012 / 2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Roxanne James Scarborough Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government received a strong mandate to keep our streets and communities safe. We are committed to ensuring criminals are held fully accountable for their actions and that the safety and security of law-abiding Canadians and victims come first in Canada's justice system. We have made the concerns of victims a priority and we will continue to make meaningful changes for victims of crime.

The recent passage of the Safe Streets and Communities Act is just one example of how we put victims first. Would the Minister of Justice please inform this House about the latest action our government has taken to support victims of crime?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I am happy to inform the House that this week is National Victims of Crime Awareness Week. Today, our government announced increased funding for the victims fund, an additional $7 million over five years, and much of it will be directed toward the creation and enhancement of child advocacy centres across Canada. This builds on the Prime Minister's recent announcement of income support for parents of missing children.

Supporting victims also includes passing tougher sentences for those who engage in crime. When it comes to standing up and supporting victims of crime across this country, Canadians know they can count on this government.

Employment Insurance
Oral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, 500,000 good manufacturing jobs have been lost since the Conservatives came to power. Instead of building an EI system that supports those laid-off workers, the Conservatives are wasting money on an employment insurance financing board whose advice they continue to ignore.

Why have the Conservatives wasted millions of dollars on the EI board instead of using that money to improve EI benefits for hard-working Canadians who lost their jobs through no fault of their own?