Evidence of meeting #25 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

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Schiefke Liberal Vaudreuil—Soulanges, QC

Mr. Chair, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on entrepreneurs and small business owners, and my community, Vaudreuil—Soulanges, is no exception. That's why, now more than ever, we must support our local economies by choosing to buy local.

We have the good fortune in Vaudreuil—Soulanges of having an abundance of fantastic local merchants. I encourage the people of Vaudreuil—Soulanges to discover all that they have to offer by going to www.achatlocalvs.com. There, they'll find a whole section on buying local and a list of merchants in the community who can meet all their needs.

As our travel options are more limited than ever, I also encourage my constituents to rediscover all that our beautiful community of Vaudreuil—Soulanges has to offer. Whether it's hiking, biking, kayaking, boating, canoeing or just stopping to pick up a bite at a local restaurant and setting up a picnic in the park, by choosing to buy local and rediscovering our own backyard, we can support each other while making the most of our limited summer months.

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

We now move on to Mrs. Mendès.

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Alexandra Mendes Liberal Brossard—Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Chair, the pandemic that has battered us since the beginning of the year has demanded superhuman efforts from health care and essential service workers. It has also demanded that the entire federal public service be creative and flexible. That is especially true when it comes to our work here, in the House, where the House administration, and IT and telecommunications teams have risen to the challenge with flying colours.

I can't adequately express my appreciation for the enormity of the work they've accomplished. Their hard work and ability to innovate are outstanding. We owe them a debt of gratitude. I am sure my fellow members will join me in extending a heartfelt thanks to all the teams who made it possible for us to carry on our parliamentary duties so effectively.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

We will now continue with Mr. Lobb.

12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Ben Lobb Conservative Huron—Bruce, ON

Mr. Chair, I'd like to recognize and congratulate all the 2020 graduates in Huron—Bruce, in high school, grade eight and even in kindergarten. Congratulations. You've worked very hard and we're proud of your accomplishments.

I'd also like to thank all the teachers, the administration, the support staff, as well as the parents, grandparents and the extended families. Your support has made the difference and supported these children towards their great accomplishment.

The great news is that the best is yet to come. We support, encourage, recognize and congratulate all your hard work. We look forward to seeing you in the future and all your tremendous accomplishments. All the best, and we'll see you out there.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

We will continue with Mr. Scarpaleggia.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Liberal Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Mr. Chair, last Sunday I attended a wonderful gathering in the city of Pointe-Claire in my riding, in support of Black Lives Matter.

I would like to congratulate the organizers, Allison Saunders and Kathleen McAdams, who brought us together in such large numbers to take a knee in solidarity for change. The message was clear: We need to listen and take action to change our institutions.

The event was remarkable in many ways, but one thing that caught my eye was the number of parents who brought their young children. It made me think of the song, Teach Your Children. What better way to do that than bringing them to take part in such an inspiring show of community solidarity for ending systemic racism.

Thank you also to Reverend Christopher Belle, who graced us with his thoughtful words of unity, peace and hope.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

We'll now go to Mrs. Block.

12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Kelly Block Conservative Carlton Trail—Eagle Creek, SK

Mr. Chair, this coming Sunday I, together with many Canadians, will celebrate our fathers.

I am truly blessed to have amazing role models of fatherhood in my life. Both my father Ernie and my father-in-law Henry have been there as voices of wisdom and reason helping me navigate life. My husband Milton and his steadfast love for and dedication to our children, and now the next generation of fathers in our family, my son Theo and sons-in-law Jeff, Nic and Michael, have blessed me beyond measure as I watch them love and train our grandchildren.

This Sunday I hope that Canadians across the country will join me in showing appreciation to their fathers for loving, protecting and guiding their children, helping them flourish and be the best they can be.

Happy Father's Day.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

Ms. Dancho.

12:20 p.m.

Conservative

Raquel Dancho Conservative Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Mr. Chair, it's an honour to rise in the House today to commemorate Pride Month 2020.

With physical distancing requirements we won't be seeing large parades or celebrations, but instead Pride is moving virtual. I am thankful that we can come together in a new way to celebrate the freedoms that were hard fought and won by the LGBTQ community and its allies.

It is also National Public Service Week and I would be remiss if I did not mention the historic discrimination suffered by members of the LGBTQ community serving in the federal public service and the Canadian Armed Forces who, three years ago, finally received an official apology in the House of Commons for this historic discrimination.

It is things like this that remind us how important Pride is. Every person, regardless of sexual orientation and gender expression, deserves to be treated with dignity, compassion and respect.

We have come a long way, and I look forward to contributing to making Canada a more inclusive place where all can live, flourish and be free. On behalf of the Conservative caucus, Happy Pride Month, Canada.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

Mrs. Hughes, you may go ahead.

12:20 p.m.

NDP

Carol Hughes NDP Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing, ON

Mr. Chair, the residents of Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing are doing everything they can to fight COVID-19, whether it be staying home, avoiding crowds, following the guidelines, performing essential work, retooling their businesses or volunteering to make personal protective equipment. These proud northerners are rising to the occasion with their usual spirit, ingenuity and great determination.

Over the next month, that ingenuity will be on display again, while celebrating Pride, National Indigenous Peoples Day, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day or Canada Day, all of which represent vibrant events under normal circumstances. People in the north are finding creative ways to connect and showcase their communities. I'm so proud to represent these big-hearted people.

I extend a special thank you to everyone providing essential services and doing their part amid exceptional circumstances. Please join me in thanking them. We're all in this together.

12:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

Mrs. Gill, you may go ahead.

12:20 p.m.

Bloc

Marilène Gill Bloc Manicouagan, QC

Mr. Chair, next week, we'll be celebrating our national holiday in a unique way in these even more unique times, but wholeheartedly, nonetheless.

As a resident of the north shore and a Quebecker, I want to say, on behalf of the Bloc Québécois, how much I love my nation and my country, Quebec. Moulded by our traditions, our history, our common language and, of course, our present, we are the indomitable who, come what may, will always be left standing, strong, alive and invigorated.

No matter where in Quebec we call home, whether it be Sept-Îles, Gaspé, Valleyfield, La Prairie, Matane, Rouyn, Chicoutimi, Quebec City, Belœil or Montreal, we have a shared pride. That pride is evidenced as much by the vitality of our regions as by the majesty of the St. Lawrence, and is embodied by our artists, whom we are eager to see perform again in person, and our families, whom we are equally eager to hug.

On June 24, I encourage all Quebeckers, wherever they are, to come together, if only remotely, to celebrate their pride in belonging to the unique people that we are, people who make the world a richer place.

I want to wish all Quebeckers a happy national holiday.

12:25 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

We'll now go to Mr. Warkentin.

June 18th, 2020 / 12:25 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Conservative Grande Prairie—Mackenzie, AB

Mr. Chair, my constituents believe that in a democracy, Parliament is an essential service. Accountability and transparency should never be optional for any government, but the Prime Minister has ignored the will of Canadians, and with the help of the NDP, has shut down Parliament.

Canadians will not be silenced. The voices of struggling energy workers, business owners, tradespeople, farm families, seniors and other Peace Country residents will continue to have their voices heard. I'll continue to fight for the people that the Prime Minister would rather ignore. Our Conservative team will continue to be the voice of those who have fallen through the cracks because of the Prime Minister's mismanagement, because in a democracy every voice matters, no matter how inconvenient for the Prime Minister.

12:25 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

Ms. Martinez Ferrada has the floor.

12:25 p.m.

Liberal

Soraya Martinez Ferrada Liberal Hochelaga, QC

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

It has been more than 40 years since I emigrated here, to Quebec, with my mother. I am a child of Bill 101 and a proud French-speaking Quebecker.

Like my colleague, I want to recognize that, on June 24, all Quebeckers will come together to celebrate their national holiday. Quebec is a strong nation with a unique identity. Whether it's our arts community, our entrepreneurial spirit or our desire to build an energy-efficient future, all these things define us as Quebeckers. Our pride is not bound by political stripe, the colour of our skin or our country of origin.

As a member of Parliament, I work each and every day to improve Quebec's future. Let us all work towards a Quebec nation where generations, young and old, and new and existing Quebeckers come together as we continue our journey as a proud French-speaking nation that stands united.

I wish everyone a happy national holiday, especially the residents of my riding, Hochelaga.

12:25 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

We will now proceed to questions to ministers.

Please note we will suspend the proceedings twice to allow employees who provide support for the meeting to substitute for each other safely.

The first question goes to the Leader of the Opposition.

12:25 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Chair, the Prime Minister so badly wanted to win a seat on the United Nations Security Council, he made it a campaign promise in 2015, spent the last five years selling out Canadian principles, cozying up to dictators and despots, and even sent Canadian soldiers into harm's way to curry favour at the UN.

Last night must have been a devastating blow to the Prime Minister. Was it worth it?

12:25 p.m.

Liberal

The Chair Liberal Anthony Rota

The right honourable Prime Minister.

12:25 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, Canadians always expect their country to step up on the world stage, and that's exactly what we've done over the past five years with our engagement on fighting climate change, on peacekeeping, on advancing the cause of women's equality, on development assistance, and trade and economic growth.

Canada has continued to engage in the world, and we will continue to engage constructively and positively on the world stage.

12:25 p.m.

Conservative

Andrew Scheer Conservative Regina—Qu'Appelle, SK

Except, Mr. Chair, that's not what he did. He remained silent when standing beside leaders of countries with terrible human rights records because he was afraid of offending them and losing their votes. That is his legacy in chasing this vanity project.

The Prime Minister shook the hand of the Iranian foreign minister and even vowed just a month after that country's military shot down a plane with dozens of Canadians on it. Again, was it worth it?

12:30 p.m.

Liberal

Justin Trudeau Liberal Papineau, QC

Mr. Chair, I will take no lessons on international engagement from a party that promised to cut foreign aid in the last election. Unfortunately, Canadians didn't agree with them and have returned to a government that continues to look at staying positive and engaged on the world stage. Yes, we have always stood up clearly and strongly for human rights, for our values, and we will continue to, even as we engage constructively around the world.