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Conservative MP for Oakville (Ontario)
Won his last election, in 2011, with 51.60% of the vote.
Statements in the House
Manufacturing Industry October 1st, 2014
Mr. Speaker, manufacturing is a high-tech, high-skilled economic engine in Canada and a significant employer for many Canadians, including those in my riding of Oakville.
Our government is supporting the manufacturing sector by keeping taxes low, reducing red tape, and promoting trade abroad and skills training at home.
Just over a year ago, our government made a strategic investment in the Oakville assembly plant that has helped transform it into one of Ford's most innovative facilities.
Can the minister explain how our government is focused on encouraging investment, strengthening Canada's economy, and creating high-quality jobs for Canadians?
Mr. Speaker, I welcome the opportunity to join in this debate on Motion No. 504, which is before the House today. I congratulate the member for Sault Ste. Marie for bringing it forward. I know it comes from his heart. It comes from the right place, and I think it is being so well received in the House in part for that reason.
First allow me to provide some context for my remarks in the debate.
The member's motion reads as follows:
That the Standing Committee on the Status of Women be instructed to undertake a study on the subject of best practices in education and social programs in Canada that prevent violence against women, and report its findings to the House within one year of the study's initiation.
I will certainly be supporting the motion, because the reality is that violence against women and girls is a scourge. It is disgraceful conduct that destroys lives, and it affects us all whenever and wherever it occurs.
We know the terrible toll that gender-based violence has on individuals, families, and communities. It also impacts our economy. In fact, the estimated economic cost of violence against women by a spouse is estimated to be at least $4.8 billion per year.
For all these reasons, our government supports asking an important committee of the House to explore, research, and draw attention to the kinds of programs that help reduce and prevent violence against women and girls in our society. For the same reasons, our government has put in place a wide range of measures to make our communities safer and to reduce and prevent violence against women and girls.
In terms of legislative actions, we passed the Safe Streets and Communities Act to improve the safety of all Canadians. We launched a national action plan to combat human trafficking. We increased penalties for violent crimes for deterrence and to keep incorrigible violent offenders off the streets longer. We introduced legislation to give police and prosecutors new tools to address cyberbullying.
At the beginning of this year, our government also launched a national anti-cyberbullying campaign, known as “Stop Hating Online”. It is focused on both parents and youth and is designed to raise awareness of the harmful impact that cyberbullying has, especially when such behaviour amounts to criminal activity.
Through economic action plan 2014, the Government of Canada will invest an additional $25 million over five years to reduce violence against aboriginal women and girls by putting money into concrete resources.
On September 15 the Minister of Labour and the Minister for Status of Women launched the Government of Canada action plan to address family violence and violent crimes against aboriginal women and girls. The action plan sets out concrete actions in three areas: to prevent violence, to support aboriginal victims, and to protect aboriginal women and girls from violence. It includes new funding of $25 million over five years, beginning in 2015-16. When added to a range of ongoing investments, the action plan represents a total investment of $196.8 million over five years.
In April our government announced the victims' bill of rights, a significant piece of legislation that will, for the first time in Canadian history, create clear statutory rights at the federal level for victims of crime.
Our government also believes in giving communities the tools to help end gender-based violence. That is why we have increased funding to the women's program at Status of Women Canada to record levels. In fact, we have invested over $146 million through Status of Women Canada in more than 720 different projects since 2007. This includes more than $70 million that has been invested specifically in projects to end violence against women and girls.
These projects are helping communities address violence in rural and remote communities, in post-secondary campus communities, and in high-risk neighbourhoods. They are responding to violence against women and girls in the name of honour, the so-called “honour killings”, and working to prevent the trafficking of women and girls through community planning.
We recently held a call for proposals for projects that are helping communities engage youth in preventing or eliminating cyberviolence and sexual violence against young women and girls.
Our government also believes in engaging men and boys to address the issue. For example, we issued a call for proposals through Status of Women Canada with the specific theme of engaging men and boys.
This is why we are supporting projects such as huddle up and make the call with the White Ribbon campaign and the Toronto Argonauts. The goal of this project is to engage men and boys in reducing violence against women and girls through activities such as in-school engagements, youth leadership development, public service announcements, as well as education in the community and even at football games in Toronto.
All of these projects supported by Status of Women Canada recognize the benefits of working with skilled partners. They are organizations with the capacity to identify needs at the community level and to develop the tools and resources to meet those needs.
We also believe in addressing the issue of violence against women and girls globally. For example, Canada is working very hard with its international partners to end child, early and forced marriage, which is a terrible practice that robs children of their human rights. I am also proud of our Conservative government's decision to bestow honorary citizenship upon Malala Yousafzai, who courageously risked her own life to promote education for girls and young women everywhere.
With all of these actions by our Conservative government, we are maintaining a clear focus on eliminating violence against women and girls as part of our broader commitment to achieving equality between men and women in Canada. We are working to help empower women, but at the end of the day, all Canadians must be part of the solution.
That is why I will be supporting the motion. It is so that the Standing Committee on the Status of Women can engage with a range of stakeholders, examine and share best practices for ending violence against women and girls, and I hope, make a real difference in the lives of many Canadians.
Liberal Party of Canada September 30th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, in Ontario, people who want to become municipal candidates must avoid conflicts of interest by resigning their seats in provincial or federal parliament, which serves this Parliament well. However, no law currently prevents opportunistic municipal councillors from running both municipally and for a federal nomination at the same time.
The Liberal leader has approved this loophole by allowing Oakville councillor Max Khan to stand as a Liberal candidate in next year's federal election for Oakville North—Burlington while he is running to be re-elected on October 27. It is a clear sign that they all know he cannot win the riding federally.
However, Max Khan did the same thing in the last federal election, and the conflict became blatant when Liberal supporter Mayor Rob Burton cancelled three weeks of council meetings during the campaign to allow Mr. Khan to campaign full time and to avoid a contentious issue of taxi licences, which might have cost him federal votes. Now it is déjà vu all over again in Oakville.
Will the Liberal leader put Parliament first and insist that Liberal candidates choose which level of government they are really running for?
International Development September 25th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, over the past couple of days global leaders have been meeting in New York at the UN General Assembly.
The well-being of mothers and children in the developing world is of great interest to my constituents in Oakville. As noted by Melinda Gates:
Under [the Prime Minister's] leadership...Canada has earned a global reputation for driving the agenda when it comes to women and children.
Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister please give the House an update on Canada's recent efforts at the UN General Assembly?
Legalization of Marijuana September 15th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, the Liberal leader theorizes that the only way to keep marijuana out of the hands of children is to legalize it and regulate it.
Let us look at a highly regulated substance: alcohol. CAMH says that over 25% of our youth in grades 7 through 12 are binge drinkers, as are over 40% aged 20 to 24. Approximately 8% will become addicted to alcohol. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among 15- to 20-year-olds, with alcohol being a factor in half of those deaths.
How is regulation really working for our youth? Canadians are supposed to believe that if the Liberals sold marijuana in stores, drug dealers would experience an epiphany, obey the regulations, throw in the towel, and stop selling dope.
In addition to their leader, “the pied piper of pot”, pro-marijuana Liberals include the “cannabis queen”, Jodie Emery, a Liberal nomination candidate in Vancouver East, and Liberal Party CFO, Chuck Rifici, who made millions selling his shares in his medical marijuana company.
Liberals want to be the party party. Unfortunately, they do not seem to care that legalizing marijuana would be abandoning the health and welfare of Canadian youth.
Protecting Canadians from Unsafe Drugs Act (Vanessa's Law) June 16th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, there have been consultations with respect to the final stages of Bill C-17, Vanessa's Law, and I believe you would find the unanimous consent of the House for the following motion. I move:
That, notwithstanding any Standing Order or usual practices of this House, Bill C-17, An Act to amend the Food and Drugs Act, shall be deemed concurred in at the report stage and deemed read a third time and passed.
Vanessa's Law June 12th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, Bill C-17, Vanessa's Law, will help identify potentially dangerous drugs and ensure the quick recall of unsafe drugs. It contains tough new patient safety measures, and the health committee is currently working very well on amendments that will make this bill even stronger.
I have been pleased to see the co-operation of all parties at committee to get its legislative study of Vanessa's Law done today and hope to see it reported back to the House as soon as possible. If this spirit of co-operation continues, it is within our power to see Bill C-17 pass in this House before the summer.
Our discussions today have been fruitful, and I hope to see this goodwill continue to ensure that this important patient safety legislation becomes law as soon as possible. I am willing to work. Our committee is willing to work. Let us get the job done.
Health June 5th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, this morning, I was pleased to take part in the beginning of the health committee study of Bill C-17, Vanessa's law.
I was pleased that we could get the study under way and would like to thank the NDP members for finally conceding to allow the bill to be referred for study after their initial attempts to slow its progress through this House.
To ensure that the official opposition remains mindful of the importance of this legislation, I would ask the Minister of Health to please inform the House, once again, about the important measures that it contains to protect the health and safety of Canadians.
Lyme Disease June 2nd, 2014
Mr. Speaker, I was pleased to second Bill C-422 in this House, introduced by the member for Saanich—Gulf Islands. With potential amendments, it is receiving wide support from both sides of this House.
The bill would expand the Public Health Agency of Canada's role against Lyme disease, in greater surveillance, prevention, control, research, education, and awareness.
Lyme disease is an emerging and debilitating disease in Canada. It is transmitted by ticks, and is now a risk in my riding of Oakville, and the GTA.
Canadians should be alerted that many victims go untreated due to misdiagnosis, as the symptoms are similar to multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, colitis, Crohn's disease, Alzheimer's, and chronic fatigue syndrome.
Anyone hiking in tall grass or brush in parts of Canada could be bitten by a tick and end up with a severe ongoing disability.
However, with early diagnosis, Lyme disease can be successfully treated with antibiotics. Canadian patients should know that the most reliable test for Lyme disease, the western blot test, is not available in Ontario and other parts of Canada, but some naturopathic doctors will provide it through laboratories in the U.S.
Health May 28th, 2014
Mr. Speaker, Bill C-17 has the support of every party in this House. When passed, it would empower the Minister of Health to, among other things, order dangerous drugs off the market without delay and require reporting of serious adverse drug reactions.
This bill is, without exaggeration, a matter of life and death for Canadians who may suffer serious adverse drug reactions in the coming months. The minister has stated that she is open to amendments to further strengthen the bill.
Can the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and for Intergovernmental Affairs please tell us why this legislation has not yet been referred to the health committee?