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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word is language.

NDP MP for Jeanne-Le Ber (Québec)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 44.70% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Military Contribution Against ISIL October 7th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, this closure motion is particularly disturbing. As my hon. colleague said, there was an agreement in terms of the debate continuing and then voting tonight. Now we are in a situation where we are basically wasting an hour on this debate and vote on closure, rather than spending it on the important work of trying to figure out how to come to consensus on this military action.

Combatting Counterfeit Products Act October 2nd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Timmins—James Bay for his very eloquent understanding of the situation. We did work together on the committee for Bill C-11 to reform copyright.

I would ask the member if he could comment further on these issues. He was speaking about the issues regarding artists and the limitations now placed on the remuneration for artists because of the changes to the mechanical rights regime, the copyright regime and the private copying regime. He spoke about how that differs, for example, from the more tangible counterfeiting of DVDs, Prada bags, or things that can be seized at the border.

Could the member comment a little bit about how he sees it being more difficult, if he does, in finding remuneration for artists under this copyright regime, as opposed to simply seizing goods at the border?

Combatting Counterfeit Products Act October 2nd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for her very in-depth speech. It seems to me that we are flying blind on this. My colleague mentioned the fact that there have been a certain number of seizures. However, is there any evidence as to what percentage of the total counterfeiting issue these seizures represent? Is it 10%, 50%, or 30%? I would like to ask my hon. colleague that question.

Petitions October 2nd, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I am presenting two petitions on behalf of my constituents. Both of them are protesting the changes to Canada Post that will put an end to home mail delivery. The people of my riding are very concerned about this because there are many seniors and people with disabilities. As well, there are not many places to install community mailboxes. That is why I am presenting these two petitions.

Ebola Outbreak September 15th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, containment of any sort is a must. The issue of containment is a very tricky and troubling one, especially when we inject human nature, culture and practice. Today we had a meeting with representatives from the Ivory Coast, the foreign affairs minister, and we did touch on that question. They have taken very strict measures in terms of border control to stop the influx or the potential for disease coming in, but there is only so much they can do.

A disease is not something that people knowingly get. The culture of embracing one's loved one, a lost member who has died of this disease. This disease lives after a person is dead. The embrace, saliva, tears, anything, this is how we contract the disease. As I said earlier, a person can contract the disease in the morning, get on a plane in the afternoon in whatever country, and we will not know until such time as that person is showing systems that he has the disease.

Ebola Outbreak September 15th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I think my colleague's question would be best asked to the government as it would have the answers as opposed to myself. It stands to reason or logic that if the plea is going out for more bodies, more people, and more experts to deal with this situation, whether all those experts come from Canada or whether Canada has a share of those experts, I hope and trust that everything is being done to make sure that the resources Canada has to offer in terms of expertise and specialists in this area are being put forward and are being put forward swiftly.

Ebola Outbreak September 15th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I do indeed congratulate the Canadian scientists for the work that has been done in the development of vaccines as well as all the other individuals across the world who continuously work on these types of vaccines.

As the world gets smaller through the Internet and through travel, what are we doing to create a more coordinated effort so the vaccines that are being developed can be tested and ready to use in a larger scale when crises like these happen?

Ebola Outbreak September 15th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I have listened with interest to a number of interventions this evening on this very scary and dangerous event that is happening in the world today.

I remember a number of years back reading a novel called The Hot Zone. It was a terrifying true story written by Richard Preston. It is a non-fiction novel recounting the fear that came about when the Ebola virus was found in monkeys in Reston, Virginia and the warning signs that this sent off. I remember the fear I felt when reading the book of Ebola skipping borders and come into the world that I knew. I started looking into it back then. The book was written in 1995 and I read it when it came out. Even back then, Ebola had already done a lot of damage.

The first time that Ebola came into western consciousness, as we know it, was in 1976 with an outbreak in DRC. At that time, it was the Zaire strain. It had an 88% mortality rate. Since then, four other strains have joined the Ebola virus arsenal. The Zaire strain still stands as being the deadliest, ranging from the mid-50% up into the high 90% as far as mortality rates are concerned.

There have been some 24 outbreaks of Ebola on the African continent since 1976 with various strains. There are Sudan, Zaire, Thai and Bundibugyo strains, with the Zaire and Sudan strains being the most prolific.

I have heard much of what we are doing in the here and now. We have talked about what Canada and the World Health Organization are doing. We have touched on what other nations around the world are doing. However, my intervention will be based on a question.

Since 1976, there seems to have been very little research or work done in terms of preparation for the eventuality of an outbreak that we now face. It is an outbreak that has crossed borders. As I understand it, this is one of the first times that we have had a multi-border crossing of this disease. The question I would put out there to ruminate on is why we in the west have not progressed further in terms of our understanding and preparedness for not the possibility but the eventuality of one of these diseases, be it the hantavirus, Ebola or Reston disease, crossing borders and entering into other countries that up until this point had not seen this disease.

I would like to take this opportunity, Mr. Speaker, to let you know that I will be splitting my time with the member for Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles.

In the days of the black plague, this disease ravaged Europe to the tune of two-thirds of its citizens. There was no understanding at the time of how this disease was jumping borders until it was understood that it was being transported by rats that stowed away on the ships doing commerce between the affected countries. This understanding helped curtail the spread of the black death to the point where it only destroyed two-thirds of the population of Europe.

In the days since then the airplane has been developed, even ocean liners, which traverse the world a lot faster. They travel to so-called Third World countries, undeveloped countries, crossing into developed nations from the continents of Africa, Europe and North America.

It seems to me that at least since 1976 there may have been an opportunity to think of what would happen when diseases like this eventually did cross borders. This is the situation we are facing today. We have transcontinental transportation. Individuals who may be infected with the disease in the morning could be on a plane in the afternoon and on a completely different continent. We are not prepared for this. We are finally realizing that there needs to be an ongoing holistic approach to controlling outbreaks of diseases of this sort.

I would venture to guess that many other types of diseases are living in animal populations all around the world and they will eventually be transmitted to humans in one way or another. How prepared are we?

We are now in a situation where the UN Security Council is going to be debating actions on this crisis this Thursday, which I believe is the first time the council has been involved in a health related crisis. We are in a situation where countries where Ebola has happened before are now unprepared to deal with both the containment and treatment of this disease. I applaud the fact that Canada is stepping forward and doing its share and I applaud the fact that other developed countries are doing the same.

I would like to think that this is a warning for the future in terms of small outbreaks. When we see small outbreaks of diseases like this, we should take the opportunity to invest and learn about them so we can prepare for these diseases eventually crossing borders and possibly oceans.

Committees of the House June 19th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague for Halifax, in her very eloquent speech on the environment, touched on a link between the existence of species and our existence, such as the fact that certain fish are not listed as protected but they are the food source for other fish. She also mentioned the fact that caribou lands are being threatened, which threatens the existence of caribou, which threatens the existence and livelihood of our first nations brothers and sisters. I would love it if the member could take a moment to expand on that theory.

Our colleagues from across the way seem to feel that it is okay not to think about the big picture, to just kind of pull a few things that make money out of the works of nature and everything else can go to blazes, as my grandmother would say. I hope that is not unparliamentary language.

Agricultural Growth Act June 16th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for my colleague.

I represent an urban riding that has a farmer's market, the Atwater Market. I also shop at the Jean-Talon Market, in Montreal. A number of farmers produce very special products. There are blueberries from the Lac Saint-Jean area and strawberries from Quebec. One of my favourites is an heirloom tomato farmer.

The changes to the wording of the act make it sound as though it is a privilege for farmers to be able to keep their own seeds and use them every year.

Does my colleague think that the change in terminology is worrisome for local farmers?