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  • His favourite word is colleague.

NDP MP for Beauport—Limoilou (Québec)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 46.10% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Protection of Canada from Terrorists Act January 28th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for his eloquent remarks and for enlightening us about this bill.

With regard to CSIS's activities abroad, various federal courts have already ruled that section 12 of the act does not contain extraterritoriality provisions that cover covert surveillance. This issue has been brought before the courts on a number of occasions.

It is troubling that, ultimately, CSIS is still conducting extraterritorial activities. Clearly, rather than remedying the situation by reining CSIS in, the government is trying to condone that behaviour by amending the act and establishing such provisions.

Would my colleague care to comment on that?

Protection of Canada from Terrorists Act January 28th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his speech, despite the insults that he threw in at the end.

The really important thing about this bill is that in the committee process, the NDP proposed a number of very reasonable amendments that the government could have accepted or at least discussed or debated. As things stand now, in fact, CSIS cannot legally conduct extraterritorial surveillance activities. This bill aims to correct that.

There is another important aspect. The amendments we proposed were meant to make the director of CSIS accountable for secret surveillance activities conducted abroad. This will not be the case, because under the bill as it stands, an employee designated by the minister will be accountable for those activities.

I would like to ask my colleague why it is not the director of CSIS who would be accountable for secret activities conducted abroad, and why a straw man should be chosen to do it instead?

Protection of Canada from Terrorists Act January 28th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, it is going to be a problem having the Senate act as a safeguard because of the number of empty seats at present.

First, I am going to correct the minister because he obviously has a short memory when it comes to the speech given by French President François Hollande in the House on November 3. Mr. Hollande absolutely did not say what the minister reported. He spoke about a terrorist-inspired attack, which is a very important nuance.

I hope that the minister will recognize that. I believe that the minister is twisting words in order to take a very simplistic approach to a very important debate.

The right of all Canadians to be properly represented in the House and to have a full debate on fundamental issues that will truly affect their lives is being violated for the 85th time.

Bill C-44 will profoundly change Canadians' ability to understand the extent to which secret activities are carried out and the consequences this will have. This could lead to very serious abuses.

Clearly, the minister is dismissing the concerns people may have about the consequences of actions taken by a government agency.

How can the minister once again justify this time allocation and the end of debate in the chamber that represents the people, the chamber of the truly elected, here in this Parliament?

Petitions January 28th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present a petition with dozens of pages signed by people from Beauport—Limoilou who are concerned about the cuts at Canada Post. They are worried about the future and the survival of home mail delivery, a service that is very beneficial to my constituents. I am pleased to give them a voice here today.

Business of Supply January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I think my colleague for his speech. I would have liked to congratulate him on winning the prize for the most boring speech from the Conservatives today. Unfortunately, he was not able to match the performance of the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Finance

That said, apart from the repetitions that every Conservative speech delivers, with very rare exceptions, like an incantation—there is something almost religious about it, it sounds very much like an incantation—I am surprised to see the Conservatives turning a blind eye to the facts presented by, among others, the governor of the Bank of Canada, about the current situation. They are not even taking into account the context of falling fuel costs.

The Bank of Canada said it clearly. The labour force participation rate for workers between 25 and 54, that is, those who are in their prime, dropped sharply in 2014. This is absolutely unbelievable, because they are the backbone of our economy. These people, who start families, buy houses and have settled into their lives are under serious threat. In fact, because of the decisions made by this government, their participation rate has dropped sharply, and the result of this is debt, job losses and bankruptcies.

How can the member not be aware of this fact, when it has been stated by the governor of the bank?

Business of Supply January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Compton—Stanstead for his very fine speech, which was geared toward his constituents.

The Bank of Canada's Monetary Policy Report indicates that long-term unemployment is still close to its post-crisis peak. Nearly five years after the crisis, long-term unemployment—the most damaging kind—is still peaking. It is absolutely unbelievable.

I have no idea how the government can avoid taking responsibility for such destructive unemployment. My colleague will agree that this is the type of unemployment that keeps people out of the job market for the long term.

I would like to hear what he has to say about that.

Business of Supply January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague from Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier for her speech.

In fact, I wanted to come back to the Bank of Canada figures on the participation rate of those aged 25 to 54. That is the most active segment of the population, the one that makes up the majority of all wage earners in Canada. The Bank of Canada indicated that the participation rate dropped drastically in 2014. That was a direct result of decisions made by this government. I would like my colleague to talk about that, that is, the results of government decisions and how they are undermining our future prosperity.

Business of Supply January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his speech.

When we listen to today's debates, it is remarkable to see how varied the NDP members' speeches are. They are presenting a wide range of viewpoints. In contrast, the Conservatives keep delivering the same litany of empty and very annoying slogans. They keep repeating themselves. It is a real challenge to follow the debates when a Conservative takes the floor because we have learned nothing new in the past eight or nine years. That being said, let us come back to the problems that my colleague's constituents are undoubtedly facing.

The Bank of Canada report indicates that the participation rate of prime-age workers, aged 25-54, fell substantially in 2014. My colleague shared the concerns of his constituents, but this is an additional concern. Our economy depends on people being able to support their family, buy a house, participate in a community's economic activity, and that was before the drastic drop in the price of oil. This is a direct consequence of the Conservatives' decisions. They are about to leave a poisoned legacy to our constituents and future generations.

I would like my colleague to say a few words about this factual information presented by the Bank of Canada.

Business of Supply January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for her heartfelt speech, which described what people in her riding are actually experiencing.

I wanted to base my speech today on facts. The Bank of Canada's most recent report, dated January 2015, is very clear. It indicates that the proportion of involuntary part-time workers continues to be elevated. That was said in 2014, before the price of oil dropped. This is the result of the measures taken by the government.

My colleague spoke about the difficulty of entering the workforce. Long-term, full-time jobs that can support a family are becoming increasingly rare. People often have unstable jobs and sometimes have to work more than one job.

I would like my colleague to tell us if that is what is happening in her riding.

Business of Supply January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Abitibi—Témiscamingue for her speech. She talked about increasing productivity and our ability to take advantage of lower energy costs, and the Bank of Canada report reflects that too. It is very clear to me that businesses do not have enough confidence to hire people for the long term in order to benefit from improved export conditions.

The Bank of Canada stated very clearly that long-term unemployment is still near its post-crisis peak. It has been five years; that is a long time. That hints at how business people are feeling and the fact that they are not ready to invest in human capital or in upgrading their equipment to take advantage of the economic recovery. Very clearly, that is because of the decisions made by this government, which put all of its eggs in the oil basket instead of supporting diversity in our economy as a way of preparing for the kind of transition we are seeing now. I would like my colleague to talk about this long-term unemployment problem and the fact that people are being shut out of economic opportunities.