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House of Commons Hansard #9 of the 40th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was opposition.

Topics

The EconomyOral Questions

November 28th, 2008 / 11:55 a.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, in yesterday's economic update, the Conservative response to the economic crisis was pitiful. One in seven women lives below the poverty line, but instead of helping Canadians, the Conservatives launched an ideological attack. Workers are worried about their jobs, yet there was no mention at all of employment insurance.

Why are the Conservatives launching partisan attacks instead of bringing in measures to help the most vulnerable members of our society?

The EconomyOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Souris—Moose Mountain Saskatchewan

Conservative

Ed Komarnicki ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, we have committed $387 million to the homelessness partnership strategy and the assisted housing initiative, which over five years is $1.9 billion. That is more than any other government in history has committed. We also have, in addition to that, programs through targeted initiatives for those who are unemployed, those who want to get re-educated and get skills. We are investing at a time when investment is needed in these areas.

The EconomyOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Bloc

Luc Desnoyers Bloc Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister and his government decided to attack public servants by taking away their right to strike. Instead of reaching out to workers, they decided to go after their rights. In the hope of imposing their right-wing ideology more easily, they are shamefully going after what thousands of workers have fought hard for decades to achieve: the right to negotiate a collective agreement and the right to strike.

Why does the government want to silence workers, when a settlement was reached with many unionized public service employees, if not to—

The EconomyOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. President of the Treasury Board.

The EconomyOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, yes, I was very pleased with the responsible attitude that the union took in terms of coming to a collective agreement with the employer.

I would point out, for the member's information, that in all cases unionized federal public sector employees will have collective agreements at set rates for the annual increases. With the collective agreements in place, there is no requirement for a dispute resolution mechanism such as strike or arbitration.

The EconomyOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

NDP

Claude Gravelle NDP Nickel Belt, ON

Mr. Speaker, this update does not meet the needs of the people of northern Ontario. With high unemployment rates, workers and their families are paying the price because this government refuses to act. The people of northern Ontario need new infrastructures and jobs, and older people need to know that their pensions are protected.

Why must families in northern Ontario pay for the government's inaction?

The EconomyOral Questions

Noon

Cypress Hills—Grasslands Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, we know that traditional industries such as mining and forestry have sustained the economic well-being of many regions and communities. That is why our government is continuing to come through for the workers and their families dependent upon this industry.

I just spoke a few moments ago about the community development trust and the pride that we have in putting that $1 billion toward communities that are hard hit by the economic situation. We are cutting red tape and we are protecting the environment. We are continuing to work and create new opportunities for Canadians.

Again, I want to point out today that this government is focused on protecting the economy. The opposition today seems to be focused on protecting their entitlements.

SeniorsOral Questions

Noon

Conservative

Greg Rickford Conservative Kenora, ON

Mr. Speaker, seniors are understandably worried about their nest eggs. They want to ensure that they will be able to retire in comfort. They want to know that their government is listening to their concerns and taking action.

Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance please inform this House what this government is doing to help senior retirement savings during this time of global economic uncertainty?

SeniorsOral Questions

Noon

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. member for that question and welcome our new Conservative member for Kenora to this House. I congratulate him on his election.

To answer that, it is nice to have a positive question that actually reflects on what we will be voting on here soon. I might remind hon. members that this is a suggestion in the economic statement, and that is to reduce the required minimum withdrawal amounts from RRIFs by 25%, but I answer this with great concern because I understand the opposition may be voting against this. That is what seniors asked us to do. I would encourage all hon. members to respect that request.

Presence in the GalleryOral Questions

Noon

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I wish to draw the attention of members to the presence in our gallery of His Excellency Mohammed Ameur, Minister Delegate to the Prime Minister of Morocco in charge of the Moroccan community abroad.

Presence in the GalleryOral Questions

Noon

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Presence in the GalleryOral Questions

Noon

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I would also like to draw to the attention of hon. members the presence in the gallery of the Hon. Keith Peterson, Minister of Health for Nunavut.

Presence in the GalleryOral Questions

Noon

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

Access to Information and PrivacyRoutine Proceedings

Noon

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I have the honour to lay upon the table the annual reports on the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act of the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages for the year 2007-08.

This document is deemed to have been permanently referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

I have the honour to lay upon the table the annual reports on the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act of the office of the Chief Electoral Officer for the year 2007-08.

This document is deemed to have been permanently referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

ImmigrationRoutine Proceedings

Noon

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to subsection 94(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, I am pleased to present, in both official languages, the annual report on immigration for the year 2008.

Notice of MotionWays and MeansRoutine Proceedings

Noon

Calgary Nose Hill Alberta

Conservative

Diane Ablonczy ConservativeMinister of State (Small Business and Tourism)

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 83(1) I wish to table a notice of a ways and means motion to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on February 26, 2008, to implement certain provisions of the economic and fiscal statement tabled in Parliament on November 27, 2008, and to implement other fiscal and economic measures.

I ask that you designate an order of the day for the consideration of the said motion.

Speech from the ThroneRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Prince George—Peace River B.C.

Conservative

Jay Hill ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I move:

That the address be engrossed and presented to Her Excellency the Governor General by the Speaker.

Speech from the ThroneRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Speech from the ThroneRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Speech from the ThroneRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

(Motion agreed to)

Interprovincial BridgePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, for the seventh consecutive day, I would like to present a petition on behalf of the citizens of Ottawa—Vanier as well as citizens from the entire national capital region. This petition is asking the government to intervene in the bridge issue. There is currently a proposal under consideration to build one or two new bridges that would eventually link to a ring road around the national capital region and that would remove heavy truck traffic from the core. Every self-respecting city, particularly Canada's capital, should have a ring road for heavy truck traffic.

The petitioners are asking the government to direct the National Capital Commission to carry out a detailed assessment of another option: an interprovincial bridge linking the Canotek industrial park to the Gatineau airport, which is option seven of the first phase of the environmental assessment of potential bridges in the national capital region.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Is that agreed?

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

The House resumed consideration of the motion.