House of Commons Hansard #114 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was rail.

Topics

Sisters of the Child Jesus of Chauffailles
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

François Lapointe Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, 100 years ago, a group of nuns left France to put down roots in Sept-Îles, Rivière-au-Tonnerre, Havre-Saint-Pierre and Natashquan. The Sisters of the Child Jesus of Chauffailles began their work as a teaching order in Quebec.

A few years later, they branched out to Rivière-du-Loup, where they helped set up several educational and health care facilities. They were also active in Saint-Antonin and La Pocatière, two municipalities in my riding.

They founded the Notre-Dame-de-Fatima hospital in La Pocatière and helped create the Collège Notre-Dame in Rivière-du-Loup, an institution that they support to this day.

They are also active in Cambodia, Japan, Chad and France. They minister to the material and spiritual needs of all people, regardless of their socio-economic status, race or religion. They are dedicated to their ministry of compassion and solidarity.

I would like to take this solemn opportunity to thank the Sisters of the Child Jesus of Chauffailles for their century of dedication to Quebec. On behalf of all the communities that have benefited from their devotion, I salute and thank them.

Happy anniversary, and long live the Sisters of the Child Jesus of Chauffailles.

Mental Health
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Ron Cannan Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Mr. Speaker, according to the Canadian Mental Health Association, 20% of the population will experience a mental disorder at some time in their lives. This means that every family in Canada will in some way be affected. The good news is that people with mental illness can and do get better. The vast majority recover.

Next week is Mental Health Week and I wish to take this opportunity to thank all of the professionals and volunteers across this great country, including, in our local CMHA branch in Kelowna—Lake Country, Shelagh Turner and her team who work tirelessly to help our communities achieve better mental health for all.

Mental health is everyone's challenge. It is important for each of us to reach out and share our personal stories with those who may not believe things can get better. They can and, with our support, they will.

Asian Heritage Month
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Joyce Murray Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, May is Asian Heritage Month recognizing the rich history of Asian Canadians and their important contributions to the settlement, development and character of Canada.

Canadians of Asian roots are a critical gateway for Canada's connection and trade with fast growing Asian economies.

Canada's cultural diversity enriches us socially, politically and economically. Asian Heritage Month is an excellent opportunity to celebrate the many Asian cultures and their contribution to our country's growth and prosperity.

Each May in my riding of Vancouver Quadra, Canadians experience and learn about the history and contributions of Asian Canadians through dozens of celebrations, including the annual explorASIAN Festival and a variety of cultural, culinary and sport exhibitions.

I encourage all Canadians to participate in celebratory events and join me in appreciating our country's vibrant Asian Canadian community.

International Trade
Statements By Members

May 1st, 2012 / 2 p.m.

Conservative

Wai Young Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, budget 2012 marked the beginning of an invigorated and deeper relationship between Canada and the Asia-Pacific region.

In the past few years, our government has been strategically expanding cultural and trade agreements with countries in this region to create jobs and economic growth. The opportunities for Canada in this dynamic region are impressive. Asia-Pacific markets have an economic growth rate that is two to three times the global average. Canada is maximizing opportunities for entrepreneurs through innovative trade, investment, air transport and science and technology agreements. This is important for all Canadians but especially for the people of British Columbia and the residents of Vancouver South. We are the gateway to the Asia-Pacific.

Our country's commitment to one project, one review, and our engagement in ongoing free trade discussions will provide the foundation needed to build Canada's future through economic growth and job creation.

Thunder Bay Multicultural Association
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

John Rafferty Thunder Bay—Rainy River, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to invite MPs and my constituents in Thunder Bay—Rainy River to join me in a 48-hour trip around the world.

The Thunder Bay Multicultural Association is hosting the 39th Annual Folklore Festival this weekend at Fort William Gardens and it promises to be one of the most colourful and entertaining events of the year.

Each year the association gathers people from diverse backgrounds and cultures to share their collective experiences and give our community a taste of life from around the world. Music, dancing, food, arts and crafts from more than 20 regions of the world are represented by no less than 40 different ethnocultural groups.

Please join me in thanking Jeanetty Jumah and the more than 1,000 volunteers who assist in the planning, performing and preparing of site decorations and who offer our wonderful community such a rich and vibrant experience each year.

I hope to see everyone there.

Victims of Crime
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Moore Fundy Royal, NB

Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to supporting victims of crime. Last week our government introduced a bill to amend the Criminal Code that would see convicted offenders held more accountable to victims of crime by doubling the victim surcharge that they must pay following their crime. By doing so, our government is helping to provide the support victims of crime need.

We also introduced the federal income support for parents of murdered or missing children to help families cope with the death or disappearance of a child. With the introduction of this support benefit, parents can take off the time they need following such a tragic event. The support is a benefit of up to 35 weeks to help ease the financial difficulty that these parents are coping with.

Our government will stand with victims of crime and all Canadians through our commitment to ensure that our streets and communities are safer. We will continue to take significant steps toward holding criminals accountable and delivering justice for victims. We were elected on that commitment and we will continue to deliver.

Economic Freedom
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Anders Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, in 1998, just one year after I was first elected, Canada ranked 27th on the Index of Economic Freedom. Now, in 2012, Canada ranks sixth for economic freedom, so says the Wall Street Journal.

I should share the credit with my Conservative colleagues, for I needed their votes to cut taxes and support free trade agreements. These fine Conservatives reduced the GST from 7% to 5% and just repealed the gun registry. However, I am not done yet. I sense my Conservative colleagues like the taste of freedom and so we shall do more. I hope for more free trade agreements coming to the floor of the House. Budget belt tightening has only just begun.

Just imagine what us Conservatives can do with several more years to go before the next federal election. We intend to streamline environmental regulations so jurisdictions do not overlap. Just think of all the jobs we can create, removing people from unemployment. So much done, yet so much to do. We have to love economic freedom.

Rainbow Day on the Hill
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Dany Morin Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise here today to welcome seven students who are taking part in the first annual Rainbow Day on the Hill, a non-partisan event organized by the NDP's LGBT caucus in partnership with Jer's Vision. This event is a great opportunity for students from the LGBT community to see first-hand the excellent work being done by their gay and lesbian MPs on the Hill.

These students are leaders of their communities. Some of their lives have been touched and shaped by the scourges of both homophobia and bullying. Despite this, and maybe because of it, they have the inner strength to stand up for what they believe in. I look forward to the day when one of them joins me as an MP here on the Hill.

People from the LGBT community represent Canadians at all levels of government. With our allies, we have fought for same-sex marriage and the inclusion of sexual orientation in the Criminal Code. Although there are still many battles to be fought, days like today serve as an important reminder that we can and will make things better.

Battle of the Atlantic
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Alexander Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, for six long years the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Merchant Navy and the Royal Canadian Air Force were key participants in what became known as the Battle of the Atlantic. Through the efforts of these brave Canadians, ships carrying troops and essential supplies were able to reach Britain and our other allies.

As war raged in Europe, Canadians risked their lives to bring conveys across the Atlantic, battling extreme weather and navigation conditions as well as U-boat attacks, to provide a lifeline to allied forces.

Winning this battle had its price: over 4,600 Canadians and Newfoundlanders gave their lives. Today we pay tribute to the courage, sacrifices and heroic acts of these brave Canadians who fought and died during the Battle of the Atlantic in order to bring us peace and freedom.

This morning in committee we heard about the recent exploits of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the most successful alliance in the history of humanity. We owe its success, in many ways, to the sacrifice of those who participated in the Battle of the Atlantic.

Plast
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Peggy Nash Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, this year marks a significant milestone for an organization that has enriched the lives of Ukrainian youth the world over, including in my riding of Parkdale—High Park.

This year the Ukrainian youth organization Plast celebrates the hundredth anniversary of its founding. Taking inspiration from the scouting movement founded by Robert Baden-Powell, Oleksander Tysovsky saw that Ukrainian youth could only benefit from an organization that would help them learn the value of teamwork, honesty, community-building and good works.

For the last 100 years, the Ukrainian community has seen the benefits of the teachings and experiences gained through Plast, with active chapters in eight countries, including six cities throughout Canada. I am proud to represent a riding in the city of Toronto which is home to Plast's largest Canadian chapter.

I stand united with my New Democrat colleagues in wishing Plast members, past and present, heartfelt congratulations.

[Member spoke in Ukrainian as follows:]

Syl'no, Krasno, Oberezhno, Bystro!

Pensions
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Daryl Kramp Prince Edward—Hastings, ON

Mr. Speaker, regrettably, when it comes to helping seniors, the NDP is all talk and no action.

Since 2006, we have taken concrete action to ensure that retirement income is sustainable and is there when Canadians need it, including introducing pension income splitting, introducing age credits, eliminating federal income tax for 38,000 lower-income seniors, increasing the GIS and the exemption, introducing the PRPP, enhancing the CPP, providing the largest GIS top-up in 25 years and introducing automatic renewal of the GIS.

Unfortunately, the NDP voted against all of these important measures.

Having taken action to assist seniors today, we need to ensure future generations can count on their retirement benefits when they need them the most. Our government is taking action to ensure sustainability of old age security for future generations.

Clearly, the NDP's lack of a plan for old age security is a threat to future Canadians' retirement savings.

Jean-Guy Moreau
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today in the House to express my sincere condolences to the family of Jean-Guy Moreau on his passing.

Mr. Moreau was a member of the Order of Canada and had a profound impact on our culture. He brought Canadian history to life by impersonating figures from Georges Brassens to Gilles Vigneault, and of course Jean Drapeau and René Lévesque.

Jean-Guy Moreau was a versatile and innovative artist who developed a unique style that stood the test of time. There was a time in the 1960s when he and Robert Charlebois performed at coffee houses. What an amazing journey he had. Thanks to his remarkable talent, he gave his audiences a snapshot of current events by impersonating the newsmakers themselves.

I rise today in recognition of his contribution and to reiterate the words of his children, who said, “He is exiting the stage of our daily lives to move on to a bigger show.” I commend his contribution, which will inspire generations of artists to come.

Public Sector Unions
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Randy Hoback Prince Albert, SK

Mr. Speaker, yesterday big union bosses at Canada's largest public sector unions imposed hikes on their members, with new levies to fund direct political action and support NDP tax and spend policies. We know this additional levy will be used for partisan purposes, including political ads, multi-million dollar strike funds and pension bonuses for the big union bosses. These big union bosses and the NDP are still being investigated by Elections Canada for their illegal campaign donations.

Our government does not think these big union bosses and their friends in the NDP should be forcing public servants to pay more money to fund their partisan political campaigns, which are only meant to serve the big union bosses and the NDP.

Unlike the NDP and its big union boss friends, our government will ensure that Canada's economy continues to be where it belongs: at the front of the pack.

International Workers' Day
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Outremont
Québec

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, today is International Workers' Day. This is an opportunity to celebrate the immense contribution of all workers who work tirelessly to make our society a better place to live in.

However, we have had little to celebrate this past year, as the government locked out postal workers and then legislated them back to work. What a fine example of bad faith.

In fact, the government has declared open season on workers' rights. It has trampled on collective bargaining rights, mismanaged the EI fund, rolled back the clock on pay equity and missed every opportunity to help protect workers' pensions.

New Democrats take a different approach. From people working on construction projects to harnessing our natural resources, from store clerks to public servants, workers are the backbone of our economy, yet many feel under threat.

Today, we are taking a moment to acknowledge their contribution and to reiterate our commitment to making Canada a more prosperous country for everyone.

Decorum in the House
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Eve Adams Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the NDP House leader of the official opposition expressed the need for more decorum in the House of Commons. Our government welcomes any initiative to improve decorum in the House. However, before criticizing others, he should take a look at his own party.

Virtually every day, members of the NDP make over-the-top characterizations of government policy, unwarranted personal attacks and exaggerated claims. From name calling to profane language, we have seen it all from the NDP in this Parliament. In fact, many NDP MPs have had to stand and apologize for inappropriate statements in the House.

If the NDP is so committed to decorum in the House of Commons, surely those opposition MPs could find a better manner in which to conduct themselves, a manner that does not result in name calling, profane language and baseless smears.

We will genuinely continue to ensure decorum within our own party. Will the NDP truly commit to do the same?