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Independent MP for Edmonton—St. Albert (Alberta)
Won his last election, in 2011, with 63.50% of the vote.
Statements in the House
Telecommunications December 6th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, as offensive as the $548 million spent on blatant partisan advertising by the government was, much of it for policies that do not exist, such as the Canada job grant, a new limbo bar has been lowered. That is the $9 million spent on TV and print ads targeting and, might I say, attacking Canadian cellphone companies. These ads offer no real information and mention no policy whatsoever.
How does the government defend attacking a Canadian industry that employs 300,000 Canadians? Is this really a good use of taxpayer dollars?
Petitions December 5th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to table a petition signed by 200 constituents in Edmonton—St. Albert. The petitioners call upon the federal government to provide legislative protection for post-secondary students who work as interns, as part of their post-secondary education, in federally regulated industries and to provide specifications with respect to hours of work and other safety measures.
This petition was precipitated by a tragic event, where an intern working in the radio industry was killed after working two all-night shifts. Therefore, the petitioners call on the government to act.
Government Accountability November 29th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, last spring the Auditor General showed that the government was unable to account for some $3.1 billion allocated to combat terrorism.
Then the AG stated that the opaqueness of the entire system was making the tracking of the money virtually impossible. However, after six months, it appears that the Treasury Board now believes that it can account for all of the money. Some of it was improperly tagged or labelled in wrong envelopes. Some of it had apparently lapsed or was not spent and was returned to the general revenue fund.
My question for the President of the Treasury Board is this. What has the government, elected on a promise of accountability, done to promote transparency and to prevent such accounting debacles in the future?
Canada Labour Code November 29th, 2013
Mr. Speaker, it is unfortunate when it takes a tragic event to bring attention to a deficiency in legislation or public policy.
On November 1, 2011, Andy Ferguson was killed in a head-on collision while returning home following two consecutive 16-hour workdays. Andy was completing a broadcast diploma at NAIT, and as part of that program was completing an unpaid internship at Astral Media. In addition, Astral radio paid Andy to do location spots, contest promotions and various other assignments.
It was the accumulation of the paid and unpaid hours at the radio station that led to his fatigued condition, and ultimately this tragic accident.
When Labour Canada did its investigation, it rightly concluded that his paid hours of work were within the allowable limits and it had no authority to investigate the unpaid hours because Andy was a post-secondary student and therefore that matter fell under provincial jurisdiction.
This tragedy highlights the regulatory gap that exists with respect to unpaid interns and the need to amend the Canada Labour Code to account for the combined hours, paid and unpaid, to protect these vulnerable and young workers.
I ask the federal government to act.