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House of Commons Hansard #72 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-22.

Topics

Challenger Jet UseOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Liberal Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the minority Conservative government's obsession with secrecy and silencing public servants has spread to National Defence.

When asked by journalists to provide information on the Prime Minister's partisan political use of Canadian government jets, defence department officials were ordered by the powers to be to hide the true cost of the trip.

Why is the government muzzling defence department officials? Was the minister ordered by the PMO to participate in this Challenger cover-up?

Challenger Jet UseOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, there has been no political interference at all within the practices of DND, which were originally set by the Liberal Party. We are following precisely the rules set by the previous administration.

Challenger Jet UseOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Liberal Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, information previously available through access to information is now regularly blacked out, just like the names on these flights. Derek Burney's name was scrubbed from the Stealth flight to Washington. The names of the Conservatives who took joyrides to Halifax and went to hockey games with the Prime Minister are gone.

Last year the Conservatives said it cost $11,000 per hour to operate these flying limousines. Now they only claim 10%. Why will the government not release the passenger list? Will the Conservative Party settle its outstanding bills?

Challenger Jet UseOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Carleton—Mississippi Mills Ontario

Conservative

Gordon O'Connor ConservativeMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, as I said, we are following the practice of the previous government. We have paid for any flights that were not on official government business. I want to point out that the previous government was using Challenger jets at twice the rate that this government is.

JusticeOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Bloc Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Justice said that he thinks the best way to improve public safety and restore confidence in the justice system is to put people as young as 12 in jail.

Does the Minister of Justice realize that his radical, repressive approach is misguided and that Quebeckers prefer re-integration and rehabilitation?

Quebeckers do not want to send 12 year olds to jail. Is that clear?

JusticeOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, there are no plans to change the law in that respect, and I have never said that we would.

JusticeOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Bloc Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government's philosophy is worrying and contradictory. The Conservatives want more people in prison for longer, yet they want more arms circulating freely.

Instead of following in the footsteps of right-wing American Republicans, the Minister of Justice would be better off finding inspiration in Quebec, where people recognized a long time ago that a preventive approach, with fewer arms in circulation, is better.

Is that not more logical?

JusticeOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, this government supports alternative measures, but when it comes to adult repeat offenders who violate the safety of Canadian citizens, all Canadians, including Quebeckers, do not approve of the fact that those individuals should be on the street. Individuals who threaten the safety of our Canadian people on a repeat basis should be incarcerated.

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Maka Kotto Bloc Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the president of ADISQ, Paul Dupont-Hébert, denounced the government's decision to raise the ceiling for foreign control in the telecommunications sector. He fears, and with good reason, that such an increase will prompt the relocation of decision making centres and increased control, especially by Americans, over our culture here.

With its chosen approach, is the government aware of the risks involved, not only to our culture, but also to our ability to choose the content?

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, regarding telecommunications, this government has outlined its policy before Parliament and before the committees of the House.

I would like the Bloc Québécois to work with us for once, to ensure that this policy is passed by Parliament as soon as possible.

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Maka Kotto Bloc Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the president of ADISQ also denounced the cuts made to the budgets that allow troupes to tour internationally. When we asked the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Status of Women if the budgets for troupes had been cut, she said no. Yet, $11.6 million out of $17 million was cut from the Department of Foreign Affairs' public diplomacy fund.

Troupes are already feeling the effects of those cuts. So, how can the minister deny this evidence?

Telecommunications IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Mr. Speaker, the department's arts program was in fact briefly put on hold while an entire government review of expenditures was under way. Subsequent to that, we have resumed funding for artists for international touring through the arts promotion program.

In addition, my colleague, the minister responsible for culture, has announced that the budget for the Canada Council for the Arts will be augmented by over $50 million in the next two years.

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec must explain how his political adviser, Normand Forest, was hired.

Through his company, Mr. Forest was given a government contract at $1,000 a day for 24 days, from March 7 to March 31. In the middle of the contract, Mr. Forest was hired as an employee of the minister’s office, beginning on March 14, 2006.

How can the minister justify the same employee getting two paycheques at the same time?

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Mr. Speaker, I would have thought the member had a little more class.

That is false, Mr. Speaker. I will say it again: it is false and false. Normand Forest was in fact employed by us, on contract, during the month of March. His work as an employee then began on April 3, and he was paid a salary only as of April 3.

As for this register that so much is being made of, contrary to what is being said, it is a register of government services. And I have noted that it does indeed say that Mr. Forest started on March 14, 2006. I have also noted that I have been employed by the government since the first of—

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine.

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, by his own words, the minister has confirmed the facts I stated in my previous question.

Can the minister explain to Canadians why he gave Normand Forest $24,000 for 24 days? What exactly did Mr. Forest do during that period?

Why did he put him on full time salary, according to the government's own Internet site, while he was still being paid for this contract? Was it to give Mr. Forest a salary that exceeds Treasury Board guidelines?

Last Friday in this House, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister refused to defend the minister. Will he--

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Mr. Speaker, I will tell this House again that this is false. Mr. Forest worked on contract for the month of March and started as an employee in my department on April 3. The pay stubs prove this.

As for the register that so much is being made of, it is a government electronic directory; it is a register of services. It says that Mr. Forest has been employed since March 14, 2006, but it says about me, the Minister of Labour, that I have been employed by the government since November 1, 2003. Can someone explain this for me?

As well, it says that the member for Bourassa, herself, has been employed—

Ministerial ExpensesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Brampton—Springdale has the floor.

HIV-AIDSOral Questions

October 30th, 2006 / 2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ruby Dhalla Liberal Brampton—Springdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister embarrassed Canadians this summer by snubbing the international AIDS conference held in Toronto. He thought it was “too political”. That is a pretty weak excuse for a politician.

We were told the funding announcement would follow shortly. The summer has come and gone and we are still waiting. The Minister of Health will still not announce Canada's funding commitment for HIV-AIDS. When will the minister get out of semi-retirement, get to work and start delivering results for health care for Canadians?

HIV-AIDSOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation and Minister for la Francophonie and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, AIDS is a major barrier to development in countries that need our help. To combat this scourge, the government has contributed $250 million to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria since it took office; 60% of those funds will be allocated to fighting AIDS.

As well, the Prime Minister announced at the G-8 summit that CIDA will be spending $450 million over 10 years to improve health care systems in Africa.

HIV-AIDSOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ruby Dhalla Liberal Brampton—Springdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, that is well and good, but what about Canadians in Canada who are dying of HIV-AIDS?

Whether it is on wait times, drug coverage, immunization, and now AIDS research funding, the government just has not delivered. Health care remains a missing priority, with no action and no leadership.

Canadians want to know the real reason there has not been an AIDS announcement. Is it because the Conservative government has made the choice to not help those who are dying of HIV-AIDS?

HIV-AIDSOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Health and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is incorrect. In fact, this government has put in an extra $472 million for HIV-AIDS sufferers in Canada that will go to support programs for vulnerable people, research, surveillance, public awareness and evaluation.

After 13 years of Liberal inaction, AIDS sufferers in Canada have a government that looks after their interests.

LabourOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Gary Goodyear Conservative Cambridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canada's Labour Code contains standards that are over 40 years old, standards designed for the longer term, 9 to 5 sort of work. As such, it fails to protect the self-employed, contract workers, temporary workers and the more modern reality of workers.

Can the Minister of Labour explain to the House the importance of tabling the Arthurs report on reforming part III of the Canada Labour Code?

LabourOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec

Mr. Speaker, we know that today is an important day for Canada as Professor Harry Arthurs has tabled his report which contains 172 recommendations for amendments to Part III of the Canada Labour Code, specifically labour standards.

We will now examine his recommendations and consult our partners—employers, unions and employees—to determine if there is a consensus and, if there is, we will soon amend the legislation.