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Conservative MP for Wild Rose (Alberta)
Won his last election, in 2011, with 74.70% of the vote.
Statements in the House
Canadian Tourism Award December 3rd, 2013
Mr. Speaker, today I rise to offer my heartfelt congratulations to David Morrison, a pioneer, builder and dynamic leader in the travel and tourism industry. The Tourism Industry Association of Canada will be awarding Mr. Morrison with a lifetime achievement award at this year's Tourism Congress.
Since becoming president of Brewster Travel Canada in 1980, Mr. Morrison has taken a leadership role within the industry, recognizing the importance of forging partnerships to the mutual benefit of all. He has served on the board of directors of the Canadian Tourism Commission, was president of the Banff Chamber of Commerce and later contributed to the formation of Banff's first tourism body, the Banff & Lake Louise Tourism bureau.
As chair of the parliamentary tourism caucus, it is my pleasure to thank David Morrison for his many contributions to Canada's growing $85-billion tourism industry.
The Economy December 2nd, 2013
Mr. Speaker, while the NDP continues to oppose our government's responsible plan to support job creation and economic growth, its only suggestion is to raise taxes.
As if imposing a job-killing carbon tax was not enough, just last week, the NDP leader confirmed his intention to impose a multi-billion-dollar tax hike on job creators. What is more, he wants to do this while we continue to cope with the challenging global economy.
Could the Minister of State for finance please update this House on the state of Canada's economy and what our government is doing to support job creation?
Protecting Canadians from Online Crime Act November 28th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I noted that in her remarks the member alluded to the idea that she somehow felt the Privacy Commissioner had not been consulted appropriately.
I want to make it clear and have it on the record that in bringing forward a bill, the government cannot share the text of a bill prior to it being introduced in the House. However, the Privacy Commissioner was, in fact, consulted in the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Report on Cyberbullying, so there was definitely some consultation that took place with the Privacy Commissioner in terms of trying to ensure that those issues were addressed.
In fact, in The Globe and Mail today, the Privacy Commissioner said:
I think it stands to reason that in order to literally police the Internet, you do need these powers. And if you want to be effective against cyberbullying, I would understand you do need extraordinary powers, so it doesn’t seem to me inappropriate.
I would like to have the hon. member offer her comments on the fact that the Privacy Commissioner has made this statement, and obviously was consulted. Maybe she would want to take back some of the comments she made and address this quote from the Privacy Commissioner.
Petitions November 20th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a petition from Kim Thomas of Cochrane, Alberta, in my riding, whose 17-year-old son Brandon was tragically killed by a drunk driver.
The petitioner, in honour of her son's memory, has taken it upon herself to collect over 1,000 signatures of individuals looking for tougher impaired driving laws in this country and calling upon the government to seek tougher laws and the implementation of new mandatory minimum sentencing for those persons convicted of impaired driving causing death. The petitioners are also asking for the Criminal Code of Canada to be changed to redefine the offence of impaired driving causing death to vehicular manslaughter.
Canadian Museum of History Act October 30th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question, although I have to say I believe that when one listens to the premise of the question itself, it is misleading, which is unfortunate.
As I mentioned in my speech, it has been more than 20 years since there has been any significant refreshing of the mandate. To look at this mandate and create the Canadian museum of history is something that should be celebrated, and I think it has the support of many Canadians. I have already read a number of very supportive quotes from a number of prominent Canadian historians and directors of museum societies who clearly believe that the government is moving in a great direction, not only to be able to better share our vast national collection that is housed there with some of the smaller museums across the country, as I have already highlighted, but also because it allows a greater celebration of who we are as Canadians and how we got to be that way. It is something we need to celebrate. It is unfortunate that the member would ask a misleading question.
We are very proud of the fact that we are refreshing and updating this mandate and that we will be able to provide that experience and those collections to more Canadians all across this great country.
Canadian Museum of History Act October 30th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I and my colleague do, of course, have many discussions about tourism, as he is involved in the tourism caucus, and I certainly appreciate those.
However, I am troubled by his opposition and that of his party to a bill that would certainly assist some of our fine local small and medium-sized museums all across this country. As well, in terms of tourism, this bill is a great way to generate visitors to communities, because this measure would allow the new Canadian museum of history to share the artifacts it has, and vice versa: museums would share their artifacts with the Canadian museum of history as well, so that more Canadians could enjoy the rich history stored in many of the 2,500 museums across this country.
There is a museum in my home town of Olds, Alberta. My grandma was one of the first telephone operators in Alberta, and when the museum brought in some of the equipment that she used to work on, she was proud that people would be able to see that part of our history. Being able to share collections with museums like the one in Olds provides the opportunity for many more Canadians to be drawn in to a museum like that to see the things that people who built this country are so proud of. I find it troubling that the NDP would not support those kinds of things for their communities as well.
Canadian Museum of History Act October 30th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to contribute to this discussion on Bill C-7, a bill that would establish the new Canadian museum of history.
I would like to use this opportunity to remind the House of the importance of museums to our society, our identity, our unity, and our future as Canadians.
Our government values our museums and has demonstrated our support in a number of tangible ways. We have spoken also of the network that the new Canadian museum of history will lead. This network will connect Canada's history museums across the country so that they can access some of the 3 million items that are in the national collection.
Like most museums, the Canadian Museum of Civilization has the vast majority of its collection in storage. The future Canadian museum of history will be negotiating agreements in every single province and territory in this country so that it can get this collection moving across the country.
History is all around us; we are just not always consciously aware of it. Are members aware that the more than 2,500 museums in Canada welcome more than 27 million visitors every year?
Our museums are where many Canadians learn about their history. Our museums have a myriad of stories to tell, stories of grand accomplishments, perseverance, struggle, community, tragedy, and triumph.
As was already noted by the member for Leeds—Grenville in the previous intervention, according to the Canadian Museums Association, 96% of Canadians believe that museums contribute to the quality of life in our nation. Furthermore, 97% believe that museums do an excellent job of preserving and presenting our history.
Recently our government announced that museums across Canada will be able to share their exhibits with the Canadian museum of history and be able to access the new museum's collection.
To make it possible to share this rich collection with all Canadians, changes are being made to the federal museums assistance program in order to remove barriers to the circulation of museum exhibitions interprovincially and to financially assist small museums in borrowing objects and exhibitions from the Canadian museum of history.
We know that it is expensive to host and move exhibits and artifacts. That is why this government thought it was important to help smaller museums across the country access the national collection of the Canadian museum of history and make sure the artifacts could be displayed all across our country. That is exactly what our government is doing. Smaller museums often do not have the capacity to acquire an artifact to complete their collection or simply to be able to add an exhibit for their visitors. With the new support that we are putting in place, it would be easier for smaller museums to approach the Canadian museum of history and access its extensive national collection.
I would also like to point out that it has been more than 20 years since the current Canadian Museum of Civilization has been updated in a significant way. Therefore, it is time to refresh its mandate and orientation so that a new Canadian museum of history can focus on the story of this great country.
As has been mentioned in past debates, the Children's Museum will continue to be an integral part of the new museum; so will the Grand Hall and the First Peoples Hall, which present chapters of our story that are of immense importance, the history of Canada's first peoples.
At the same time, a significant part of the museum's success will be its ability to reach all Canadians and tell their stories, the stories of the people who helped build this country and those who continue to do so today. With that goal in mind, the future Canadian museum of history is signing partnership agreements with a number of museums to establish a nationwide museum network.
This new national museum will work with museums all across Canada to help ensure that our country's achievements and accomplishments are highlighted. We know that museums develop pride in local traditions and customs and that they help people to feel a sense of belonging and involvement in their community. Museums and the programming they support promote co-operation among different cultures and different age groups and help to create community and social networks.
As the creation of the Canadian museum of history shows, our government values the role that museums play in preserving and commemorating our past.
By the time we celebrate Canada's 150th birthday, Canadians will have a new museum that highlights the moments, the people, and the objects that have helped to shape our great country.
I ask that the members of the House consider the statement by one of Canada's best known and most respected historians, Michael Bliss, when he said that our collective history is our collective memory. He added that without memory, people become unmoored, adrift, lost, and said that was why so many people work so hard to preserve our national memories, our sense of ourselves as Canadians—as a people who have had a long and rich common experience.
Since the announcement in October 2012 of the transformation of the Canadian Museum of Civilization into the Canadian museum of history, we have heard from many organizations that enthusiastically support this change. I would like to read just a few of those quotes from some of those individuals.
John McAvity is the executive director of the Canadian Museums Association. He said, “The Museum is developing equal partnerships with other history museums across Canada. ... That is good news.”
A press release from the Ontario Museum Association said that the OMA “...welcomes the initiative to strengthen partnerships among museums in Ontario and across the country.” Marie Lalonde, executive director of the OMA, also said, “...we welcome the opportunity to explore new ways that museums may work with each other.” She added that they look forward to the new direction announced by the government.
To go a little further with a couple of additional quotes, Marie Senécal-Tremblay, the president of the Fédération canadienne des amis des musées, said that this announcement will allow small museums to better showcase their unique collections to many more Canadians and visitors.
Finally, Jack Granatstein, a prominent Canadian historian, said, “This move is exactly what I thought should happen” and “ I'm delighted the government and the museum are doing it.”
This is very clear support for the moves being made by our government, and very clear particularly in relation to the fact that we are looking to share that very vast national collection with museums all across this country. It is important to note that.
Clearly, our commitment to Canada's museums is real and ongoing. In the last fiscal year alone, this government invested approximately $355 million in museums and heritage institutions. Our government has made key investments in the museum sector. This includes support for two new national museums, namely the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 in Halifax. We have also increased funding for summer internships in small and medium-sized museums. This year, some 1,600 students were hired to work and learn in museums all across the country.
In my riding alone, here are just a few of the examples of many I could name. One is the Peter and Catharine Whyte Foundation, which was able to hire a summer intern to help with its work. Another is the Centennial Museum Society of Canmore. There is also the Luxton Museum Society in Banff National Park, where they have preserved the local first nations history. Those are great examples from my riding of Wild Rose alone.
Now we are embarking on the creation of the Canadian museum of history. In 2017 we will celebrate Canada's 150th birthday, and as we approach that important date, the timing seems right to pause and rethink the way we tell our story to Canadians and visitors from abroad.
Our museums hold the cultural wealth of the nation for all generations, both past, present, and future. Museums play a central role in giving Canadians the resources to celebrate why Canada is such a unique and great country.
Let us all join together to create the national Canadian museum of history as the institution that will capture our lived experiences.
International Trade October 18th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, our government has the most ambitious pro-trade plan in Canadian history. Today in Brussels, the Prime Minister delivered on this plan once again. While the NDP supports no trade and the Liberals support only the drug trade, our Conservative government is pursuing free trade that will benefit hard-working Canadians.
Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade please inform the House how our government's pro-trade plan is creating jobs and opportunities for all Canadians?
Canadian Museum of History Act June 17th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I appreciate that the member raised this issue, because it is one that I believe is a very key part of this new mandate for the museum, including the sharing of our key national treasures with other museums across the country, and vice versa. They will have the opportunity to share theirs with the museums in the capital region. I appreciate her giving me the opportunity to highlight that one more time, because I believe it will be a huge benefit to museums all across Canada and to Canadians, by extension, whether it be at local museums or key national museums here in the capital region, to have greater access to some of the key artifacts and treasures of so many great aspects of our Canadian history.
Canadian Museum of History Act June 17th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, the member referred to some examples that I used in my speech, and there were a number of examples of great pieces of Canadian history, certainly including some pieces I referred to that were part of the important and proud history of our efforts in world wars. However, there are many other aspects of our Canadian history that are very important.
He referenced the partner museum to this one. The Canadian War Museum has many artifacts and it is a very valuable museum that many Canadians enjoy. There is so much more to our history over the 150 years of history in this country, and even before, to be shared with all Canadians through this great new museum of history.
The member also asked about the support among Canadians. There is no question that the museum carried out a series of cross-country consultations and gave Canadians all across Canada the opportunity to give their opinions on the personalities, events and milestones that tell the Canadian story. There are many of them. In fact, in total, more than 20,000 Canadians were consulted on the change to the name and the mandate of the museum. They contributed their ideas to the website, panel discussions and round tables all across Canada and shared with us what they would like to see in this new museum of history.