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NDP MP for Brossard—La Prairie (Québec)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 41.00% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Petitions April 9th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I am here to present a petition that seeks to stop violence against bus drivers. In light of the large number of assaults of bus drivers every year, the petitioners are calling on the House to amend the Criminal Code to create a separate offence for assaults committed against bus drivers while they are working and to set harsher penalties for the attackers.

Rail Transportation April 8th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, that is quite the statement.

Before the Lac-Mégantic disaster, few people realized how much dangerous cargo was being moved by train, but now municipalities and Canadians want to know about dangerous cargo being moved through their communities. Instead of being more transparent about disclosure rules, Conservatives are being less.

Why is the government being so secretive about rule changes for dangerous goods?

Rail Transportation April 8th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the minister wants to deliberately change the rules so that regulatory changes do not have to be published in advance. As a result, the public will be notified of changes to safety regulations only once they have taken effect.

The Conservatives allowed railway companies to regulate themselves, with disastrous results. Canadians no longer trust the Conservatives' policies.

Why does the minister want to changes the rules in a way that would reduce transparency?

Rail Transportation April 7th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the government is not doing anything. Old DOT-111 rail cars filled with oil continue to travel through towns and are derailing, but the public is not even made aware.

It is very troubling that the reports issued by rail companies are not reliable. It is also troubling to see that companies are never fined for failing to report all incidents.

When will the Conservatives make the safety of Canadians a priority over the profits of rail companies?

Rail Transportation April 7th, 2014

There is still no concrete action, Mr. Speaker.

Canada's Transportation Safety Board discovered that rail companies hid 100 accidents, in addition to the 1,800 accidents not reported by CN between 2000 and 2007. MMA, which is responsible for the tragedy in Lac-Mégantic, neglected to report 24 accidents and derailments. That includes two incidents in Farnham where unsupervised trains full of oil accidentally moved.

Does the minister think it is acceptable that rail companies do not report all accidents?

Air Transportation April 3rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, there is simply no justification for this change, and the government knows it. Canada's major airlines are profitable. There is no excuse for allowing anyone to cut corners, especially when passenger safety is at stake. If something goes wrong on a flight, these rules would reduce by 25% the flight attendant ratio.

Will the minister commit to studying the safety impact of this change instead of just rubber-stamping it?

Air Transportation April 3rd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to complaints about airline services in Canada, nobody has ever complained about having too many flight attendants aboard. At least, that is what the Conservatives seem to think. Transport Canada wants to allow airlines to operate with one flight attendant per 50 passengers. To ensure passenger safety, there should always be one flight attendant per emergency exit.

Why does the Minister of Transport want to eliminate such an important regulation?

Transportation April 2nd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, there have been fatalities. Millions of cars have been recalled, and while the U.S. Congress has launched a full investigation, the minister is refusing to answer questions about a problem that has been going on for 13 years.

GM is required to report these problems to Transport Canada as soon as they are identified, so why have Canadians been kept in the dark about this defect for so long? Who is keeping Canadians safe?

Transportation April 2nd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, last June, a 23-year-old Quebecker from Granby was killed in an accident while driving his GM vehicle. GM had been aware of the problems related to its faulty ignition switch since 2001, but the Minister of Transport says she was not made aware of the defect until February. Canadians should have been informed much sooner.

Has the minister ordered GM to explain?

Wearing Turbans on Soccer Fields April 2nd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I was honoured to give members of FC Brossard U15 AA and the Brossard soccer association certificates to congratulate them on their exceptional gesture.

In 2013, the Quebec soccer federation banned turbans for safety reasons. In a show of solidarity, and even though there were no Sikh players on the team, FC Brossard players decided to play a match wearing orange turbans.

Just a few days later, FIFA issued the following statement: “(FIFA) authorizes the [Canadian Soccer Association] to permit all players to wear head covers...in all areas and on all levels of the Canadian football community”.

I would like to thank Ihab Laheta, the coach, Bruno Scarsini, the assistant coach, Éric Giguère, the manager, the parents and all of the players for taking a stand against injustice.

You stood up for human rights. Thanks to you, our society is more just and tolerant. Thank you.