This week, I changed much of the tech behind this site. If you see anything that looks like a bug, please let me know!

House of Commons Hansard #105 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was passengers.

Topics

HealthOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, Dr. Jeanne Besner, chair of the Health Council of Canada, says, “As we reflect on the speed and direction of health care renewal, we find the glass is at best half full”.

That is the diplomatic way of putting it.

The straight goods are that the Conservative government has failed working families when it comes to health, failed to live up to its health care commitments and has failed to do anything about home care, aboriginal health, catastrophic drug coverage, health records and primary care. Five million Canadians cannot find a doctor.

Why have the Conservatives failed to keep their health care promises?

HealthOral Questions

2:50 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, on the contrary. This government, in three budgets in a row, increased the transfer payments to the provinces and territories by 6% per year. We have met that commitment. We were the first government to create a national cancer strategy. We were the first government to create a Mental Health Commission. We were the first government working with the international community to work on a vaccine for HIV-AIDS. We were the first government that established patient wait time guarantees with every province and every territory.

We are acting on behalf of Canadians and we are proud of our record.

Canada Pension PlanOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton NDP Hamilton Mountain, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government's much touted pension splitting scheme is backfiring badly. A couple in my riding saved $2,000 on their income taxes, but as a result--

Canada Pension PlanOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Canada Pension PlanOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. member for Hamilton Mountain has the floor.

Canada Pension PlanOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Chris Charlton NDP Hamilton Mountain, ON

--had to pay $5,400 more for one spouse's nursing home care. Another will lose her GIS.

Seniors cannot afford high priced accountants to save them from the government's false advertising, and now they have to pay a penalty if they want to reverse the pension splitting on their tax returns.

Will the government do the right thing and waive that penalty today for the 2007 tax year? Will it at least do that?

Canada Pension PlanOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Whitby—Oshawa Ontario

Conservative

Jim Flaherty ConservativeMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, I am not familiar with that particular case but if the member wants to raise it with me I would be happy to look at it and see how it applies to the particular couple to whom she makes reference.

Having said that, pension splitting is a major tax reform in Canada. It applies, not only to seniors but to all pensioners. We are hearing about it, all of us, all across Canada of thousands of dollars in tax being saved by older people in Canada who can well use the money, and it is a stimulus to the economy.

Omar KhadrOral Questions

June 4th, 2008 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Sue Barnes Liberal London West, ON

Mr. Speaker, every question we ask about Canadian, Omar Khadr, gets the same response about him being treated humanely and receiving welfare visits from foreign affairs officials.

In fact, the report for those welfare visits indicates that in the opinion of the American officials, Omar Khadr is, “A good kid who is not a radical and is 'salvageable'”.

Foreign affairs officials say that the tension in Guantanamo will turn Omar Khadr into a radical. Is that the government's intentions?

Omar KhadrOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and to the Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Khadr faces a very serious charge in relation to his being captured in Afghanistan.

The Government of Canada has sought and will receive assurances that Mr. Khadr is being treated humanely. Department officials have paid several consular visits with Mr. Khadr and will continue to do so.

Again, any questions regarding whether Canada plans to ask for the release of Omar Khadr are premature and speculative as the legal process and appeals are ongoing.

Omar KhadrOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Sue Barnes Liberal London West, ON

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Khadr faces very serious charges is the answer we get from the Conservatives. That is the exact same thing they said about Maher Arar. “The legal process is continuing”, the government said.

The fact that there is no judge does not seem to be bother them.

Maybe the new Minister of Foreign Affairs could answer today. Will the new minister continue to ignore the advice of his own foreign affairs department that says that Omar Khadr should be brought back to Canada?

Omar KhadrOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and to the Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, I will repeat again that any questions regarding whether Canada plans to bring Mr. Khadr here is speculative and premature as the legal process and appeals are still going on.

Again, the legal process and appeals are going on. Therefore, it is very speculative and premature to ask for his return at this time.

JusticeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Liberal Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, Sacha Bond, a 23-year-old Canadian citizen, is serving a 20-year sentence in a Florida prison. Two requests for transfer have been made to the Minister of Public Safety. He denied the requests, knowing that the young man has mental health problems and requires special care.

The minister is citing security issues as the reason for denying the transfer. He is very selective when it comes time to help Canadians abroad. The minister seems to have an A list and a B list. Which list is Sacha Bond on?

JusticeOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, there are currently some 300 appeals in my file involving similar cases. I cannot talk specifically about this one. He can appeal if his request was not granted.

JusticeOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Liberal Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, Sacha Bond needs medical care that he is not receiving in the Florida penitentiary. He also needs rehabilitation, but the minister refuses to return him to Canada, arguing that he is a threat to Canadians.

If he were to receive the appropriate care and rehabilitation in Canada, he would be less dangerous than if he remains in a U.S. prison.

Why has the minister refused to repatriate Sacha Bond? Why is he prepared to ruin this young Canadian's life, instead of bringing him here so he can finally receive the care to which all Canadians are entitled?

JusticeOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, my friend across the way knows very well the trouble I would get into as minister if I started going into the specifics of somebody's particular case. He knows that very well. He should not just raise this for political reasons.

At any given time there are approximately 2,000 Canadians outside of the country imprisoned. They can appeal to come back to this country. There are about 300 of those appeals in process right now and certainly any individual, including the one my colleague has mentioned, can appeal at any time.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives' zeal is making us lose face on the world scene. A number of congresses are being held in Quebec City as part of the 400th anniversary celebrations, but some participants are unable to attend because they do not have visas.

For the International Eucharistic Congress, believe it or not, which starts in 10 days, hundreds of people were denied visas or are still waiting for a response. We are talking about priests and lay persons recommended by the religious authorities in their countries, not nasty terrorists.

How does the government explain this zeal?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, under the law, it is impossible to guarantee that the visa applications for all the delegates will be approved, because each application must be evaluated individually. That said, I have asked my officials to process the applications quickly and fairly.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, apparently, her department has had the list of delegates for the International Eucharistic Congress for two years. I have more examples.

How does she explain the fact that the Guinean president of the Conseil international des organisations de jeunes de la Francophonie, an international francophone youth organization, was denied a visa for the general assembly, which started yesterday?

Yet another example: the Conférence internationale sur le vieillissement dans les sociétés francophones, on the theme of healthy aging, is starting today without a dozen or so of its participants. Why is that? This is a disgrace.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the member knows very well that our primary responsibility as a government is to provide protection and security for the people who are already here. To do so, we must evaluate visa applications individually. As you and the hon. member know, we cannot discuss the reasons why the visas were denied.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Joyce Murray Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate the B.C. government for passing a cap and trade law last week to complement its groundbreaking carbon tax.

On March 12 the Prime Minister was quoted as saying that his “national plan and British Columbia's plan complement each other”.

If the Prime Minister still agrees with himself, why does he allow his environment minister to deride the cap and trade agreement between Ontario and Quebec as being a rogue initiative?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

3 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, when it comes to taxes, let me be very clear. Gordon Campbell can be trusted, unlike the Liberals across the aisle.

Let us look at what the Canadian Federation of Independent Business has said about taxes on fuel:

Any government or political party promoting a new or increased fuel/carbon tax--regardless of the justification--will appear extremely insensitive to consumers and small business owners at this time...small businesses are counting on governments to...Place a moratorium on any discussions or implementation of additional fuel or carbon taxes.

Why does the Liberal Party not listen to small business in this country?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

Bev Shipley Conservative Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, right now there are about five million cars and trucks on Canada's roads built before 1995 that do not meet tougher environmental standards. These cars and trucks produce about 19 times the pollution and smog of current vehicles.

As we celebrate Clean Air Day, Canadians want to do their part to help clean the air we breathe and reduce smog.

Can the Minister of the Environment tell the House what plans he has to help Canadians get these old clunkers off the road?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

3 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, many Canadians, including the Canadian auto workers and others, have pushed for years for a national scrappage program.

Earlier today, I was pleased to be joined by the Clean Air Foundation and the Automotive Recyclers of Canada to announce a four year initiative designed to scrap high polluting vehicles. These vehicles pollute and contribute to smog and air pollution some 19 times more than new cars today. We are going to be able to get some 200,000 additional cars off the road.

This will lead to cleaner air for Canadians to breathe. We made commitments to get tough on polluters. We are helping Canadians get the job done.

CopyrightOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Industry keeps delaying the introduction of the Copyright Act. Canada's international reputation has been tarnished because Canada gives in to American lobbyists' arm-twisting when it comes to trade. We also know that the government is participating in secret talks in Geneva to treat children with iPods like criminal members of international counterfeiting rings.

Why does the minister want to turn millions of ordinary Canadians into criminals?

CopyrightOral Questions

3 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member simply has all of his facts wrong. The key issue on copyright is, of course, striking the appropriate balance; a balance between, on the one hand, consumers and, on the other hand, creators. Attempts by the previous Liberal government to do so, not surprisingly, have failed.

The bill will be introduced when the Minister of Canadian Heritage and I believe that the appropriate balance has been struck. I would encourage my friend to try to be constructive and patient.