I'm always available. If you'd like, we could go to Tim Hortons and get a coffee and chat.
I appreciate that this is not an easy expense for any family. The way Passport Canada is set up is that it's a cost-recovery agency. It can charge only enough to provide the service. It's not paid for out of general government revenues. We certainly try to ensure that they keep their fees to no more than is absolutely required.
The good news is that they'll be ten-year passports—but that doesn't help the children, as you pointed out—and that the e-passports also will make the security of the passport better.
The only other alternative would be to subsidize it out of general government revenue. There are many Canadians who don't travel abroad because they can't afford to, and it would be, I think, wrong to ask them to subsidize those who do.
I appreciate your comments. It is a significant imposition on families, but there is a cost to providing the service. I'm certainly not insensitive to the pressures that are put on the middle-class family.