Evidence of meeting #23 for COVID-19 Pandemic in the 43rd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was chair.

A video is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

1:50 p.m.

Green

Paul Manly Green Nanaimo—Ladysmith, BC

Madam Chair, the Geneva Convention considers both tear gas and pepper spray to be chemical weapons and prohibits their use in war, yet our police forces use these weapons on Canadian civilians. These weapons are indiscriminate and can affect peaceful protestors and innocent bystanders. Will the government prohibit the use of these weapons and require police to use de-escalation techniques to keep legal protests peaceful?

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Blair Liberal Scarborough Southwest, ON

Madam Chair, the right to peaceful protest in this country is a constitutionally protected right. We want to ensure it's always respected.

At the same time, Madam Chair, we recognize that the use of even less than lethal force can have significant impacts on people's safety. This is a highly regulated substance in Canada. It's prohibited for non-police use, and for the police it is and should be highly regulated.

The RCMP have advised me they have not used tear gas in nine years. We'll continue to monitor it to ensure that peaceful protest is always respected.

1:55 p.m.

Green

Paul Manly Green Nanaimo—Ladysmith, BC

Madam Chair, in 2012 the RCMP spent $14 million on 18 armoured personnel carriers. One's parked at the Nanaimo detachment. I can't imagine why we have weapons of war like this for policing civilians. Will the government rein in the RCMP budget and end wasteful spending on militarizing our civilian police forces?

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Blair Liberal Scarborough Southwest, ON

Madam Chair, it's a very important tradition that our Canadian police are not militarized.

At the same time, we've seen a number of tragedies when police have responded to situations in which people were armed with weapons designed for soldiers to kill soldiers, and they've been used to kill police officers. The militarization of our society, so strongly promoted by some, is the direct consequence of the militarization of the police. As we remove these weapons from our society and prohibit them, we'll make it safer for everyone and we can then move away from such a model of policing.

1:55 p.m.

Green

Paul Manly Green Nanaimo—Ladysmith, BC

Madam Chair, the government spent $4.5 billion to buy an old, leaky pipeline. Since 1961, there have been 82 reported spills from the Trans Mountain pipeline. Over 1.5 million litres of crude oil has spilled into the surrounding environment. This weekend, the Trans Mountain pipeline leaked again, dumping 190,000 litres of oil. How much is this spill going to cost Canadian taxpayers to clean up? How much contingency funding has been budgeted to repair the environmental destruction from spills?

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Liberal Mississauga—Malton, ON

Madam Chair, I want to thank the honourable colleague for his question.

He full well knows that the acquisition that we made with regard to the TMX initiative is a reflection of the fact that we want this initiative to move forward in a sustainable manner and in a manner that protects the environment. I'll continue to work with my colleagues to endeavour to make sure that we have the appropriate processes in place to protect the environment and at the same time create good-quality, middle-class jobs for Canadians.

1:55 p.m.

NDP

The Acting Chair NDP Carol Hughes

The honourable member for Rosemont—La Petite—Patrie, Mr. Boulerice, has the floor.

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice NDP Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Thank you, Madam Chair.

The Black Lives Matter movement is right to discuss systemic racism in our societies. In Montreal, the city and the police department have recognized this, and measures will be put in place.

The Liberal government, once again, is all talk and no walk. Although it spends $10 million a day, we see no attempt to reform or change the RCMP.

If the Prime Minister really wants to act, why is he delaying the action plan in response to the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls?

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Blair Liberal Scarborough Southwest, ON

Let me assure this House and the member opposite that we're not dragging our feet. This is an important issue. Indigenous people, black Canadians and other racialized people are far too often experiencing systemic racism and disparate outcomes through the criminal justice system. It's incumbent upon all of us who work within the criminal justice system to take the steps and actions necessary to produce more equitable outcomes. All police services, including the RCMP, must be committed to ensuring that the people they're sworn to serve and protect are always treated with dignity and respect.

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice NDP Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Madam Chair, why are the Liberals taking indigenous children to court to challenge the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruling in their favour?

1:55 p.m.

Ville-Marie—Le Sud-Ouest—Île-des-Soeurs Québec

Liberal

Marc Miller LiberalMinister of Indigenous Services

Madam Chair, as the honourable member knows full well, a number of cases are pending, and we are currently negotiating with the parties. We are making progress, and I would be delighted to tell the member and the House about it in response to a later question.

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice NDP Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

We've been asking questions about it for months, and as I see it, we should keep doing so.

The Prime Minister's new pipeline, which taxpayers were forced to buy with their hard-earned money, has leaked. Some 190,000 litres of oil spilled, and we can't even make the company pay for it because the Liberals bought the pipeline.

Trans-Mountain, Keystone XL and the resumption of gas exploration and development off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador—are these the projects the Liberals had in mind for their green recovery?

2 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Liberal Mississauga—Malton, ON

I'd like to thank the honourable member for his question.

Our priority was to protect the health and safety of Canadians throughout the pandemic, especially when it comes to the environment. That's why environmental and climate change laws aimed at protecting the environment, human health and conservation will remain in force.

2 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice NDP Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Across Quebec, the cultural community is going through a harrowing time. Unions, associations, artists and creators have all taken part in public demonstrations recently to condemn the lack of a specific plan for the living arts, performing arts and festival sector.

What is the government waiting for?

2 p.m.

Liberal

Steven Guilbeault Liberal Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

I'd like to thank the member for his question. However, I strongly disagree with him.

We haven't waited to develop a plan for the arts and culture sector. We listened to the community and we tailored our supports, as they were announced. We have an emergency plan for the arts and culture sector. We were asked to adapt the CERB to take royalties into account, and we did. We were asked to extend the CERB, and we did. We are fully aware that the recovery will take longer in the arts and culture sector.

We have been there, we are there and we will be there for the arts and culture sector.

2 p.m.

NDP

Alexandre Boulerice NDP Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Well, that wasn't at all what the artists and creators who were out demonstrating in the streets a few days ago thought. They were protesting on the weekend.

The CERB extension announced by the government only brings us to September, but the cultural community is expecting the worst in the fall.

What is the government's long-term plan to support creators and their entire teams?

2 p.m.

Liberal

Steven Guilbeault Liberal Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

I'm not so sure those who were protesting last week had issues with our government, but we'd certainly be happy to speak with them.

As for a long-term plan, we are currently consulting arts and culture stakeholders to contemplate together how the government can help the sector in response to the ongoing crisis.

We are working on finding solutions, but until we have long-term solutions, we have seen to it that our artists and organizations have access to funding until September.

2 p.m.

NDP

The Acting Chair NDP Carol Hughes

The honourable member for Beauport—Limoilou, Mrs. Vignola, has the floor.

June 16th, 2020 / 2 p.m.

Bloc

Julie Vignola Bloc Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Madam Chair, I will be sharing my time with the member for Montcalm.

According to the latest news, Seaspan Shipyards will be spending an additional $1.5 billion to build two ships. Why? Because the ships were ordered in 2011 and still haven't been delivered.

Davie built the Asterix without going over budget because it delivered the ship on time. Davie is currently the top shipyard, representing 50% of Canada's shipbuilding capacity.

Why isn't Davie being awarded its fair share of contracts?

2 p.m.

Oakville Ontario

Liberal

Anita Anand LiberalMinister of Public Services and Procurement

I'd like to thank the member for her question.

Davie is certainly a strong and trusted partner that works very hard to help our government get results for Canadians.

Building a new class of ships is highly complex, and it's not unusual for cost estimates to change throughout the procurement project. It's important to make sure additional funding is available for the joint support ships project to ensure the navy's vessels are delivered.

2 p.m.

Bloc

Julie Vignola Bloc Beauport—Limoilou, QC

We are talking about $1.5 billion, here. In the beginning, eight years ago, the project was supposed to cost $2.6 billion. There can't be much missing when the cost overrun is double the initial estimate.

Why haven't the ships been delivered yet? Why is Davie still not seen as a trusted partner?

2:05 p.m.

NDP

The Acting Chair NDP Carol Hughes

Minister, please keep your answer brief.

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Anand Liberal Oakville, ON

Once again, I would point out that building a new class of ships is highly complex, and it's not unusual for the cost estimate to change for a procurement project as large as this one.

I know that Davie works very hard, and we also believe it is an outstanding partner.

2:05 p.m.

NDP

The Acting Chair NDP Carol Hughes

It is now over to the honourable member for Montcalm, Mr. Thériault.

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Luc Thériault Bloc Montcalm, QC

Madam Chair, in Quebec, 12,000 people have begun their training to work in residential and long-term care centres. They will be ready for duty in mid-September. In the meantime, we need the support of the army, which is helping us save lives. The dedication of the members of the armed forces is paramount, and I want to extend my heartfelt thanks. The government extended their mission until June 26, which is only 10 days away.

What does the army have to do right now that is more important than helping our caregivers save lives?