House of Commons Hansard #143 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was agreements.

Topics

CANADA-PANAMA ECONOMIC GROWTH AND PROSPERITY ACT
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal Party has been fairly clear on the issue in regard to this particular bill. In principle, we support it. We do have concerns regarding the environment, as I alluded to earlier, and labour and so forth. At the end of the day, this is a bill we be supporting.

Having said that, I think Canadians need to be concerned about the growing trade deficit that the Conservative government has created. The government tends to focus on this particular agreement and the Jordan agreement.

What does this particular member believe the Government of Canada is going to have to do to try to turn things around and bring back the days, with Liberal administrations, when we had a trading surplus? At the end of the day, that is going to create the hundreds and thousands of jobs here in Canada. We have to achieve that surplus.

When does the member believe we are going to be able to address that particular issue?

CANADA-PANAMA ECONOMIC GROWTH AND PROSPERITY ACT
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Merrifield Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, that is an interesting comment. Maybe the member is rather new here, but when the Liberals were in power for 13 long years, they signed zero agreements.

We signed nine and are heading to ten free trade agreements. It is very important that we not allow other countries to eat our lunch when it comes to trade. That is exactly what I said: when it comes to Panama, we have the United States, Singapore and other countries ahead of us with free trade agreements. The first one in usually has an opportunity ahead of the others. That is why we are pursuing, aggressively, free trade agreements with Japan and others. There is an advantage to making sure we do that.

It is very interesting, coming from the Liberal Party that agrees with free trade, because they did absolutely nothing. We have seen that as a trend by the Liberal Party for many years, so we are not really surprised.

CANADA-PANAMA ECONOMIC GROWTH AND PROSPERITY ACT
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Anne-Marie Day Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to tell the hon. member that the NDP does not oppose free trade, but it does oppose time restrictions on debate. The NDP also opposes everything that is hidden in legislation and everything the Conservatives forget to mention. The NDP is in favour of a healthy economy and wants workers to be protected and to have their own rights. The NDP also wants to put an end to tax havens.

Can the hon. member confirm that there is nothing hidden in this bill?

CANADA-PANAMA ECONOMIC GROWTH AND PROSPERITY ACT
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Merrifield Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, the member is not opposed to trade; she is opposed to time allocation. This bill got to third reading with the last government. How much more debate does the member want on this thing?

Now we have started from scratch. This government has brought it up through committee and into the House, into third reading. That is a fairly extensive look at it. If the opposition has not made up its mind by now, it is never going to.

When it comes to tax havens, this is something that has been brought up before. In 2002 Panama committed to implementing the OECD's standards when it comes to exchange of tax information. In 2011, the OECD took another look at it and formally listed Panama as having substantial implementation and as having achieved international standards on exchange of information.

I believe Panama has come a long way. This is the right thing to do, and I encourage all members to consider that and vote for this piece of legislation.

Correctional Service Canada
Statements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Bloc

Maria Mourani Ahuntsic, QC

Mr. Speaker, inmates in Correctional Service of Canada penitentiaries regularly use their blood, vomit, feces, urine, semen or saliva as a weapon against correctional officers. The rate of hepatitis C among inmates is 20 to 50 times higher than in the general population, and the HIV infection rate is 5 to 40 times higher.

Every incident that occurs leaves correctional officers and their families in limbo, since inmates can refuse to have their blood analyzed to determine their state of health. These men and women who serve the public deserve our respect and our protection. They are not asking that every prisoner be required to give a blood sample, only those who, by their actions, have threatened the most fundamental right of correctional officers—the right to life.

What is the Minister of Public Safety waiting for to respond to this appeal and pass appropriate legislation?

Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal
Statements By Members

June 19th, 2012 / 1:55 p.m.

Conservative

Barry Devolin Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, ON

Mr. Speaker, every member of Parliament has been given the privilege of selecting 30 recipients for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal. For several months I wondered how I would select just 30 people from the 120,000 in my riding. Obviously there are hundreds of worthy candidates. Upon further reflection, I began to think about the Queen herself and about what she values and stands for. Words such as duty, honour and service quickly came to mind.

I think all Canadians are aware of the high regard the Queen has for our armed forces and how often she pays them respect. That is why I decided to select Diamond Jubilee recipients by honouring those who serve members of our armed forces. For example, there are unsung heroes in Royal Canadian Legions across the country who serve our veterans on a daily basis. In recent years, many Canadians have paid respect to our troops in Afghanistan. In my riding, one woman has sent scores of packages in the mail to soldiers she has not even met. There are also many cadet commanders across Canada who give their time to prepare the future leaders of our armed forces.

It is these people who will receive Diamond Jubilee Medals in my riding. I think my choices are most appropriate and I believe the Queen herself would agree with my decisions.

Blood Donation
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

Dany Morin Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week was very important, because Canadians were encouraged to generously donate blood. I made my first donation when I was 18. But the cruel and discriminatory rules set by Canadian Blood Services and Héma-Québec against gay and bisexual men prohibited me from continuing to donate.

In 2012, because of biomedical technological advances to detect HIV in blood, there is no need for this discrimination. In fact, a team of researchers with the Canadian Medical Association Journal recommended that gay couples who have been in a stable, monogamous relationship for one year be able to donate blood.

These researchers suggested that, with such a measure, the risk of receiving HIV-infected blood would be only 1 in 11,000,000. Since we do not have a stable supply of blood from year to year, we are not in a position to refuse the generous donations from these gay couples, whose sexual practices are just as safe as those of heterosexual couples.

I am calling on the Minister of Health today to put an end to this discrimination against gay men. It is an insult to assume that our blood is not clean enough for you.

Children's Health
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Joe Daniel Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, I stand in the House this afternoon to highlight the need for a pan-Canadian network for child and youth nutrition.

Studies have shown that good nutrition for our children and youth has a direct impact on their educational success. These educational outcomes lead to their success in getting better jobs and better long-term health. This has a direct impact on our economy in reducing health care costs and in creating a more educated workforce to meet the needs of Canada's future workers.

I call on all members of the House to support the Motion No. 319 on children's health which will engage in a consultative process regarding the promotion and maintenance of healthy weights for children and youth.

Birthday Congratulations
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Foote Random—Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to a remarkable lady living in Stephenville Crossing in the riding of Random—Burin—St. George's. On May 29, Mrs. Frances Peddle celebrated her 106th birthday.

On a recent visit with Mrs. Peddle, who lives with her daughter, Margaret, I had the pleasure of chatting with her and enjoyed her stories and sense of humour. At the age of 15, Mrs. Peddle moved from her childhood home in Green's Harbour, Trinity Bay to St. John's where she worked until age 17 when she moved to Montreal. This meant moving to a foreign country, as Newfoundland was not then a part of Canada.

At the age of 23, Mrs. Peddle returned to Newfoundland where she worked and raised her family of six children. After her husband passed away, Mrs. Peddle married again to a gentleman with six children. Today she has 57 grandchildren, 90 great-grandchildren, 30 great-great grandchildren and one great-great-great grandchild.

I ask all members to join me in recognizing Mrs. Frances Peddle and this tremendous milestone in her life.

Canada-Wide Science Fair
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Clarke Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

Mr. Speaker, I am very proud to recognize two constituents of mine who have the remarkable achievement of attending the Canada-Wide Science Fair and competing.

Tristen Sasakamoose and Mario Ahenakew of the Ahtahkakoop School, with their project on ancient laws and legends pertaining to buoyancy, attended the Canada-Wide Science Fair this year in Charlottetown. On behalf of our Conservative government, I congratulate them both on being the first first nations team to attend the Canada-Wide Science Fair.

The Canada-Wide Science Fair is a national championship where finalists from different regional science fairs across the country meet and compete. It is the largest extracurricular youth activity related to science and technology in Canada.

It is an honour to rise today and recognize these two students who achieved such a remarkable feat. The Canada-Wide Science Fair accepts only the best students and projects and has a long history dating back to the 1960s.

I know the community of Ahtahkakoop and first nations across Canada are incredibly proud of what Tristen and Mario accomplished.

Democracy
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Denise Savoie Victoria, BC

Mr. Speaker, I often visit high school classes in my riding because I believe a healthy democracy needs all voices at the table, including youth. Students I have met recently at Victoria High are not apathetic. They are aware and engaged. In the civics class, every student is involved in a volunteer project. I promised I would bring some of their concerns to Ottawa.

The Vic High media and politics class wants to see a greater concern for truth and less spin by politicians. They deplore how some issues are depicted as black and white or good versus evil, but one overriding concern in several classes was that governments were not doing enough to protect our environment.

It is not apathy that stands in the way of youth engagement but an open and responsive government that respectfully listens to their concerns for a healthy environment is a goal that all youth would embrace.

Fiesta Week
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Colin Carrie Oshawa, ON

Mr. Speaker, this week, in my home riding of Oshawa, we are celebrating the 38th annual Fiesta Week.

Fiesta Week is one of the most popular summer events in Oshawa. The annual week-long multicultural festival is a wonderful celebration of the cultural diversity of Durham region, especially in the city of Oshawa, for which I am truly proud to represent in the House of Commons.

Over the last 38 years, Fiesta Week has provided an opportunity for residents of Oshawa and Durham region to experience European, Asian and Caribbean cultures and cuisines, all without having to leave their community. There are numerous fun and exciting events throughout the week for people of all ages. This past Sunday I was proud to be part of the kickoff to Fiesta Week and attended the parade and concert.

Fiesta Week truly has something for everyone. Fiesta Week continues to be an inspiring celebration of the cultural diversity of Oshawa. I encourage everyone to participate in the festivities. A special thanks goes out to all the volunteers in the Oshawa Folk Arts Council. These individuals deserve our utmost respect and appreciation for all they do.

The Prime Minister
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Mark Adler York Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, there is a growing lack of respect for basic common decency by certain members of the House.

Last Thursday, two members gestured toward the Prime Minister in a questionable manner. I know I was not alone in my disgust in hearing of this action. Regrettably, it seems that this questionable action from the third party is not isolated to the House. Merely hours later, the member for Papineau tweeted that the Prime Minister does not believe in Tikkun Olam, a Jewish tenet that means healing the world.

On this side of the House, under the leadership of this Prime Minister, this government acts every day to uphold the Canadian values of freedom, human rights, democracy and the rule of law. Furthermore, considering the many awards and accolades that the Prime Minister has received from the Jewish community and other humanitarian organizations, I find the statement outrageous.

Given the strong humanitarian record of the Prime Minister, I urge all members to stand in recognition of the great works that have been accomplished in the spirit of Tikkun Olam by our government under the leadership of our principled Prime Minister.

Diesel Exhaust
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Mike Sullivan York South—Weston, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week, the World Health Organization moved diesel exhaust to a new ranking, making it a carcinogen as powerful as asbestos, arsenic or mustard gas. This means that exposure to diesel exhaust can kill people just as surely as smoking cigarettes can.

Residents of the west end of Toronto have been saying to this to governments for years. With federal help, Ontario plans to run 464 diesel commuter trains each day within a few feet of homes, schools, day care centres and hospitals. It will be the busiest diesel corridor on the planet and, given the new evidence, 300,000 local residents will be subjected to carcinogenic exhaust.

The federal and Ontario governments need to get their act together and begin electrifying this corridor, starting with the air rail link. Electric trains are clean, quiet, more economic to run and maintain, last longer and, best of all, do not cause cancer.

I urge the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities to take immediate action to protect the residents of Toronto.

Christiane Blanchet
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Jacques Gourde Lotbinière—Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to salute the contribution of an extraordinary volunteer in my riding.

I am pleased to announce that, on June 12, Christiane Blanchet received the off-road vehicles volunteer recognition award of excellence from Quebec's transport minister, Norman MacMillan.

Now in its third year, this award honours people who have made a major contribution to their community through their involvement and activity.

As an intrepid, energetic and vital member of the Club motoneige des Plaines in Lotbinière, Ms. Blanchet has helped keep the club going for many years.

On behalf of all members of Lotbinière snowmobile clubs, I am very pleased to congratulate Christiane Blanchet on receiving this award of excellence.