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Liberal MP for Vancouver Quadra (B.C.)
Won her last election, in 2011, with 42.20% of the vote.
Statements in the House
Business of Supply January 29th, 2015
Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to also join the debate on the opposition motion, which states:
That, in the opinion of the House, the Prime Minister of Canada should hold annual First Ministers' Conferences.
Most Canadians would think that happens, or at least there are meetings with premiers of the provinces and territories, because it makes so much sense, as the member for Vancouver Centre so eloquently pointed out. However, that has not happened.
When the member for Oak Ridges—Markham spoke earlier in the debate, he commented that if people had been in a provincial government during the time of the previous Liberal government, they would have been very critical of it. I have news for the member for Oak Ridges—Markham. I was in a provincial government. I was in the B.C. government from 2001 until 2005, under a previous Liberal government. I was at the front lines around the cabinet table when our premier would come back from these first ministers conferences. He would talk about what had been sparked, where there was a growing consensus on a big issue that Canadians across the country faced, and what he personally would like to do about it. We were all engaged in how we could help move these issues forward, hand-in-hand with the provinces and territories and our federal government.
I would like to point out for the members of the Conservative Party that Canada is a federation, which means that it is a union of partially self-governing states or regions under a central or federal government. We are not a monarchy. We are not a republic nor a dictatorship. We are a federation, and that means we need to work together to advance the big public policy issues where there is a common interest across the country. They may not always be exactly the same interests, but they are common interests.
As my colleague mentioned, a number of those initiatives came out of these meetings of the first ministers with the prime minister, and that was while I was in the provincial government. I saw first hand how the 10-year national health accord started to bloom as an idea through those premiers and the prime minister working together. What came out of that, for the first time, was a consensus and a way forward on how to join forces, reduce duplication, reduce overlapping initiatives, learn from each other and begin to tackle the huge challenges that people faced across the country with wait times for surgeries and other matters that cost them their good health. That came from a meeting of first ministers and the prime minister.
There was the Kelowna accord. Today, our indigenous peoples are suffering. They do not experience the kind of forward movement that would have happened had the current government not scrapped the Kelowna accord. The accord, once again, was from the premiers meeting with the prime minister. The premier of British Columbia, in particular, decided that this would be a real priority for the Province of British Columbia, so he joined in a leadership role with the prime minister of the day, Paul Martin. He decided to help advance it by working with premiers from across the country, enrolling and eliciting their support for the concept. In the end, we had an agreement among all of the provinces and territories and, most important, with the representatives for all indigenous peoples across Canada.
What do we have today? Our indigenous peoples feel they need to rise up across the country, with demonstrations like “Idle No More”, to get the point across that they are being left out. The comprehensive framework of addressing the inequities and Canada's shameful carry-over of its colonial history have not been resolved. The Kelowna accord would have set the foundation to do.
A national child care plan was another for which I sat at a cabinet table and we wrestled with how we would enter into an agreement for a national program and maintain the unique characteristics of the child care funding, support and principles in British Columbia. Those kinds of conversations at first ministers conferences helped to power through those complicated differences among us to the point where there were some real outcomes, and the national child care plan was not only negotiated, but was agreed on right across the country.
The first year of funding from the federal government actually flowed to the provinces, and they had one year out of that five-year plan to address the desperate inadequacy and lack of child care in the provinces. Sadly, that is another critical program that the NDP, under its previous leader, voted against, brought down the Liberal government, and the national child care plan was scrapped to the detriment of families across the country.
It is not just about the things that were done through this collaboration. I also want to speak briefly to some huge failures that are a result of this kind of collaboration not happening. This includes all of the wasted time and energy on Senate reform by the Prime Minister, who never bothered to reach out and meet with colleagues to learn what their appetite for change would be and what kind of change they would support.
National Defence January 28th, 2015
Mr. Speaker, Canadians deserve to know the truth, that the Prime Minister has shamefully refused to explain how and when the role of Canadian troops went from not accompanying, as he promised last October, to a de facto combat role now.
Canadians, through Parliament, did not agree to put our Canadian soldiers into front-line combat, so why is Canada the only coalition country with ground troops under fire?
National Defence January 27th, 2015
Mr. Speaker, yesterday in the House, the Minister of National Defence justified front-line combat by saying, “I am not sure we could train troops without accompanying them.”
Yet on September 30, the Prime Minister explicitly ruled out combat on the ground. He said in question period, the mission “is to advise and to assist. It is not to accompany.”
Do Canadians not deserve the truth?
Business of Supply January 27th, 2015
Mr. Speaker, I listened to the comments of the member for Wild Rose with great interest. I believe that, unfortunately, he has mixed his adjectives up when talking about a prudent approach or premature action. Does he actually consider that it was prudent to promise up a $2 billion tax break to the families who need it the least at a time when the budget is not balanced? The government has created a huge vulnerability for this country in having balanced books with this premature tax break.
The key question I am wondering about is this. Does the member believe that part of the prudent approach is the deliberate clawback of over $1 billion from the Veterans Affairs budget and the slashing of front-line and other staff in Veterans Affairs by 1,000 members? Is it prudent to withdraw from injured armed forces members and veterans the very services and mental health care that they need and deserve?
Questions Passed as Orders for Returns January 26th, 2015
With respect the procurement of goods and services for use by the Department of National Defence: for each awarded contract over $25,000 for which a supplier cancelled or failed to meet a delivery date after March 31, 2011, what is (a) the name of the contract; (b) the type of contract or method of supply; (c) the reference number, solicitation number, and tracking number; (d) the names of all parties to the contract; (e) the date the contract was awarded; (f) the description of the good or service to be supplied; (g) the value of the contract; (h) the delivery date specified in the contract; (i) the value of monies paid by the government to the supplier in advance of delivery, if applicable; (j) the date that the good or service was delivered, for goods and services that were delivered late; (k) the planned future delivery date, for deliveries that remain outstanding; (l) the date the contract was cancelled, for cancelled contracts; (m) the reason for the cancellation of the contract, for cancelled contracts; (n) the value of advance payments returned to the government, for undelivered goods and services; (o) the values and conditions of the contractual penalties for late and failed delivery; and (p) the value of monies recuperated by the government pursuant to penalties for late or failed delivery?
Questions Passed as Orders for Returns January 26th, 2015
With regard to the Canadian Armed Forces Operation IMPACT: what are the estimated (for the entire six-month operation) and actual (to-date) (a) full and incremental costs for the mission, broken down by month; (b) full and incremental costs for the (i) CC-130J, (ii) CC-177, (iii) CF-188, (iv) CP-140, (v) CC-150T; (c) total flying hours for the (i) CC-130J, (ii) CC-177, (iii) CF-188, (iv) CP-140, (v) CC-150T; (d) full and incremental costs of all base support arrangements (e.g. accommodations, meals, amenities, infrastructure, utilities) including any in-kind support received; (e) full and incremental costs of all deployment, supply, and re-deployment flights, including Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and charter aircraft; (f) ordnance ammunition (i) used, (ii) to be used, and its full and incremental costs; (g) full and incremental costs related to fuel delivered by RCAF tankers; (h) full and incremental costs of repair and overhaul; (i) full and incremental costs of any special pay or allowances for deployed personnel; (j) full and incremental costs associated with Home Leave Travel Assistance; (k) full and incremental costs associated with Class C Reserves deployed on operations; and (l) full and incremental costs associated with Class B Reserves employed as backfill in Canada?
Questions Passed as Orders for Returns January 26th, 2015
With regard to the Canadian Armed Forces Task Force Libeccio in Operation Mobile: what were the (a) full and incremental costs from March 2011 to October 2011, broken down by month; (b) full and incremental costs for the (i) CF-18, (ii) CC-150, (iii) CC-130, (iv) CC-177, (v) CP-140; (c) total flying hours for the (i) CF-18, (ii) CC-150, (iii) CC-130, (iv) CC-177, (v) CP-140; (d) full and incremental costs of all base support arrangements (e.g. accommodations, meals, amenities, infrastructure, utilities) including any in-kind support received; (e) full and incremental costs of all deployment, supply, and re-deployment flights, including Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and charter aircraft; (f) ordnance ammunition used and its full and incremental costs; (g) full and incremental costs related to fuel delivered by RCAF tankers; (h) full and incremental costs of repair and overhaul; (i) full and incremental costs of any special pay or allowances for deployed personnel; (j) full and incremental costs associated with Home Leave Travel Assistance; (k) full and incremental costs associated with Class C Reserves deployed on operations; and (l) full and incremental costs associated with Class B Reserves employed as backfill in Canada?
Questions on the Order Paper January 26th, 2015
With regard to Canadian military bases and stations both in Canada and abroad: since 2007, what are (a) the names and ridings of Members of Parliament who have visited any bases or stations; (b) the dates that the Members visited; (c) the name of the base or station that was visited; (d) the purpose of the visit; and (e) any costs associated with Member’s visit?
Veterans December 11th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, when it was convenient, the Prime Minister praised the new veterans charter. For example, in 2006, in speaking with veterans, he claimed to support the troops and noted, “ This veterans charter is one example of our government’s commitment”. However, when it became clear how badly his government had mismanaged that supposed commitment, he rushed to blame the charter on a previous government.
The Prime Minister has been exposed for his mean-spirited neglect of our veterans. How can they possibly trust anything he says?