House of Commons Hansard #199 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was immigration.

Topics

Citizenship and Immigration
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Dubé Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, on December 31, right in the middle of the holidays, the Suarez family received a letter from the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism for the deportation of Omar Andrés Burgos Suarez, 14, and his mother, Édith Suarez Gutiérrez. The family has been living a nightmare ever since.

Young Omar arrived in Canada in 2008 and has since fully integrated into his host society. He speaks French perfectly and is doing very well in a number of his courses at École secondaire de Chambly, which he has been attending for more than three years.

I would like to point out that my entire community wants to help the Suarez family. The students and teachers at École secondaire de Chambly gave me a petition signed by more than 500 people asking the ministers concerned to review this file.

Therefore, I am asking the Minister of Public Safety to grant a stay of removal in order to allow young Omar to finish his school year. I am also asking the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism to show compassion and to review this file so that mother and son can remain with their family here in Canada.

Citizenship and Immigration
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Costas Menegakis Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, today, during the report stage debate of Bill C-43, the faster removal of foreign criminals act, I was shocked to hear several NDP MPs repeat that they do not believe that criminals convicted with a sentence of six months or more have not committed serious crimes and should not be deported from Canada. That is right. The NDP does not think that criminals convicted of crimes such as drug trafficking, robbery and theft, assault with a weapon, or even sexual assault, have committed serious crimes.

With today's shameful comments, they have made it clear that they, in fact, want to make it harder for serious criminals to be deported from our country. The NDP has proven once again that it will always put the interests of criminals first.

It is our Conservative government that is standing up for victims and law-abiding citizens and it is only our Conservative government that will put the safety and security of Canadians first, always.

The Conservative Government
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Manon Perreault Montcalm, QC

Mr. Speaker, during the break I met with a number of Canadians who shared their concerns with me.

I met with people who are worried about the changes to EI and how they will negatively impact the agricultural sector.

I met with people who are very worried about underemployment and who are having a hard time making ends meet.

I met with people whose communities do not have the resources they desperately need for infrastructure.

I met with organizations representing persons with disabilities and veterans that are watching the government slowly withdraw the crucial support they depend on.

I remind the members opposite that these are also their fellow Canadians. When the government hurts Canadians and these members do nothing, they are also responsible.

It is a new year; they must remember that they have been called upon to represent all Canadians and not to pick and choose.

Taxation
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Cheryl Gallant Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, ON

Mr. Speaker, in recent weeks, Canadians from coast to coast to coast have faced chilling deep-freezes. These annual deep-freezes are nothing new in Canada. Every year, Canadians budget for increased home heating bills. Every year, Canadians make sacrifices to pay those bills. That is why our government has taken steps to make life more affordable for Canadians. Since 2006, we have cut taxes more than 140 times.

However, while our government is cutting taxes, the NDP is proposing a massive $21 billion job-killing carbon tax that would increase the cost of gas, groceries and home heating. For Canadians struggling to stay warm this winter, it is clear which party is on their side: our Conservative government.

Superintendent of the Year Award
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to an accomplished educator, Robert Mills, director general of the Lester B. Pearson School Board, which encompasses primary, secondary and professional schools in the western Montreal region.

Mr. Mills was recently named the 2012 Superintendent of the Year by the Canadian Association of School Administrators. He was also awarded the Xerox Excellence in Educational Leadership Award at the CASA national conference in July 2012.

Throughout the many stages of a career that began in the classroom, Bob Mills has helped manage major changes in Quebec's educational system, some truly tectonic, such as the transition from confessional school boards to linguistic boards. The mark of a true leader, Bob Mills had the foresight to partner and plan for difficult challenges ahead so as to preserve the exceptional educational programs that have defined Lester B. Person School Board's reputation for excellence.

A nation that values education is one that will know social progress and economic prosperity. On behalf of all members of the House, I thank Bob Mills for his recognized contribution to making Canada such a nation.

New Democratic Party of Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, Canada's debt is by far the lowest of all the G7 countries, and our record on job creation is the best, with over 900,000 net new jobs created since July 2009.

We are working to improve the economy, but the NDP wants to impose a $21 billion job-killing carbon tax on Canadians.

The NDP's $21 billion carbon tax would have a devastating impact on Canadian families because it would raise the price of everything from gas to groceries to electricity and all other goods and services.

Our government has held over 200 economic consultations over the past six weeks, and it is clear that Canadians do not want an NDP-style carbon tax.

Our priorities are jobs and long-term economic growth, and that is why Canadians trust our government.

New Democratic Party of Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, a new year is a time for making resolutions. And the Conservatives had plenty of options.

They could have finally decided to be transparent, to stop selling off our natural resources to foreign countries at bargain basement prices, to manage public funds prudently instead of getting involved in the F-35 fiasco, to put an end to the series of ethical scandals or to respect seniors instead of slashing their old age security pensions.

Unfortunately, yesterday I saw that not much has changed.

In contrast, the NDP will use 2013 as an opportunity to continue our relentless efforts. In 2013, with a staunch defender of Canadian interests at the helm, with a united, solid, competent team and with an unyielding commitment to hold this irresponsible government to account—the NDP will prove yet again that it is ready to build a greener, more prosperous and fairer Canada.

New Democratic Party of Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ted Opitz Etobicoke Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, two days back and already the spinning begins.

Yesterday my NDP colleague from Scarborough Southwest said that his party will offer practical solutions. What he fails to mention is that the NDP solution is a new $21 billion job-killing carbon tax.

He says their solutions will be fair, but that is NDP code for “it will cost all Canadians dearly”. The NDP's job-killing carbon tax will raise the price of everything from gas to groceries to electricity. He said that their solution will build a more prosperous Canada, but that is code for “the NDP's $21 billion job-killing carbon tax will raise billions on the backs of hard-working Canadians”.

In fact, that is the entire purpose of the NDP plan and not some idea that has altruistic environmental goals. His leader said that he had proposed a system of carbon pricing that will produce billions. The NDP's job-killing carbon tax is simply bad for Canada. Our Conservative government will continue to stand up against this reckless and irresponsible job-killing policy.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Outremont
Québec

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, one of the world's leading rating agencies downgraded the ratings of Canada's five biggest banks.

Today, another rating agency sounded the alarm. Fitch said that rising Canadian household debt is “the main domestic threat” to the stability of our entire financial system.

Does the Prime Minister realize that families in Canada carry more debt than those in any other OECD country? What is he going to do about it?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the government has already recognized Canadians' rising debt levels.

We have taken measures that have begun to produce positive results. Speaking of Canada's banking system, once again, the World Economic Forum has said that ours is the most stable system in the world. Yesterday, Moody's said that Canadian banks are among the most highly rated of those it tracks around the world.

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Outremont
Québec

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, under the Conservatives household debt in Canada has skyrocketed to 167% of disposable income. Over the past three decades the income of the richest 20% of Canadians has increased, while for the other 80% net income is in fact down. The middle class is being squeezed as never before. Savings are down, and more and more families are relying on credit cards just to make ends meet. Household debt is not just hurting families; it is now threatening the stability of our financial system itself.

When is the Prime Minister going to start taking this problem seriously and acting?

The Economy
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, Canadians have obviously felt in a position to take on greater mortgage debt. The government and the Governor of the Bank of Canada have indicated some concerns about that. We have taken some steps that have indeed moderated that particular trend.

However, when we are talking about the banking sector, I do have to point out that once again this past year the World Economic Forum has rated Canada's banking system the strongest in the world. Even yesterday, with the decision, Moody's said that Canadian banks still rank among the highest rated banks in our global rating universe.

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Outremont
Québec

NDP

Thomas Mulcair Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we are talking about the poverty of Canadian families, not about the banks. They made $33 billion in profit.

Today in Canada, first nations schools receive nearly a third less funding than the schools of other Canadian children. Canada and first nations are grappling with some difficult issues—resource royalties, treaty rights, rebuilding our nation-to-nation relationship—but the principle that our children all deserve an equal shot in life, that is basic, that is fundamental.

A year ago the Prime Minister promised to fix the funding gap for first nations schools. Funding is still at a third less. Why has the Prime Minister failed to act?

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the leader of the NDP did ask about the banks, but he did also ask other questions. In fact, under this government we have seen moderating of that income gap because of actions this government has taken, like cutting the GST for ordinary Canadians, something the NDP voted against, providing tax credits for families, something the NDP voted against, and specifically when we talk about aboriginal Canadians, building 260 new schools, something the NDP of course did not—

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Andrew Scheer

Order, please. The hon. member for Nanaimo-Cowichan.