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 #107 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was vaccine.

Topics

Quebec City ArmouryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General is reporting that the federal government spent $118 million on 33 armoured vehicles, many of which are not even operational. When it comes time to invest in military equipment, the floodgates open wide, but when it comes time to enhance our military heritage in the heart of Quebec City, they simply order more studies to call into question the relevance of the project.

Will the minister responsible for the Quebec City region admit that she has utterly failed in her duty to show some leadership regarding the restoration of Quebec City's military heritage?

Quebec City ArmouryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Central Nova Nova Scotia

Conservative

Peter MacKay ConservativeMinister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, what the Auditor General has done, in fact, is she has praised the Department of National Defence for being able to procure the vehicles necessary to protect the Canadian Forces for the important work they are doing in Afghanistan. I quote:

In three of the four projects we examined, National Defence and PWGSC provided the Canadian Forces in Afghanistan with urgently needed vehicles that National Defence determined met the operational needs. The quick procurement and delivery of these protective vehicles, in the opinion of National Defence, contributed to the safeguarding of Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan.

We are proud of that fact. We will continue to work with all departments to see that we provide the Canadian Forces the important equipment they need.

Quebec City ArmouryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister responsible for the Quebec City region promised that a decision would be made by December regarding the reconstruction of the Quebec City Armoury. Clearly, she has been unable to keep her promise. For Yvan Lachance of the Voltigeurs, the federal government's dithering confirms its insensitivity regarding the Quebec City Armoury.

When will the minister finally show some leadership and tell us what she plans to do with the armoury, and sooner rather than later?

Quebec City ArmouryOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Louis-Saint-Laurent Québec

Conservative

Josée Verner ConservativeMinister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I would simply like to remind the House that when we presented our economic action plan, the government promised to spend up to $2 million on public consultations to find a solution for the Quebec City Armoury.

I would remind the hon. member for Québec that she voted against that initiative. As a government, we want to act transparently and efficiently, and above all, we want to find a solution. During the public consultations, the member for Québec missed her chance once again to propose any constructive solutions. Our government will find a lasting solution for the Quebec City Armoury.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

Mr. Speaker, construction workers in Atlantic Canada have long had an excellent, mutually beneficial relationship with the contractors of Alberta, but a lack of action on the government's part has strained that relationship.

Large-scale layoffs have impacted both Canadian workers and temporary foreign workers, only to see the less trained, less costly temporary workers hired back just days or weeks later. This is costing Canadian workers their livelihood and in some cases costing temporary foreign workers their lives.

When will the government finally take the Auditor General seriously and fix this problem?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, the working conditions of all temporary foreign workers are governed by the relevant provincial labour codes overseen by the provincial labour ministries.

We have recently brought in regulations to allow greater cooperation between my ministry and Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, as well as the provincial labour ministries. In part, we will keep a list of employers with a bad employment record and ensure they do not have access to labour market opinions and work permits in the future.

We are taking action to both grow our economy and defend the interests of these workers.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Maurizio Bevilacqua Liberal Vaughan, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Auditor General, in reference to the Conservative government, has stated that there is no well-defined strategy to best meet the needs of our labour market.

She stated that the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration has made a number of key decisions without properly assessing the costs, the benefits and the potential risks.

We need action and leadership to better integrate new Canadians into our workforce. Canada is falling behind the rest of the world in an area where we once led.

How and why has the minister allowed this to happen?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

3 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, in point of fact, Canada continues to lead on immigration.

We are maintaining, as indicated in the 2010 immigration plan which I have just tabled in the House, that in the next year we will maintain the developed world's highest levels of immigration at 0.8% of our population, between 240,000 and 265,000 new permanent residents.

More important, we have improved the immigration system. We have reduced the backlog in the federal skilled worker category by 33%. We are now giving answers on applicants through that program in 6 to 12 months rather than 5 to 6 years which was the case under the previous government.

Product SafetyOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, New Democrats have been trying to get lead and phthalates out of children's toys for over a decade.

Yesterday the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development issued another report showing that the government still is not protecting children from dangerous and toxic substances. The report is very disturbing to Canadian parents who have heard the government talk about this for a long time and are very disappointed that it still has not taken action.

Why does the government continue to fail to protect our children? What does it say to parents heading out to buy toys during this holiday season?

Product SafetyOral Questions

3 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. member for raising this very important issue. I agree with the member.

There is a bill in the Senate, Bill C-6, the Consumer Product Safety Act, which would allow us to recall products that are unsafe. I would urge all members of this House to urge the Liberal senators to pass the bill so that we can protect the health and safety of our children.

Product SafetyOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, it is true there is a bill that we supported. We actually worked to amend and strengthen it. It is stuck in the Senate. That is a problem.

The fact of the matter is we do not need a new law to ban toys with toxic substances that the government has already banned.

My question is simply, will the government immediately remove these toxic toys from the store shelves?

Product SafetyOral Questions

3 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, again, to recall any products that are on the shelves of retail stores, we require the legislation that would allow us to do that.

Bill C-6 that is stuck in the Senate with the Liberals, once passed, would allow us to recall products that are unsafe for our children.

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, tonight this House will vote on the member for Portage—Lisgar's private member's bill to repeal the long gun registry.

Some opposition members have publicly stated that they will do the right thing and support this bill, and will bring an end to the Liberal's billion dollar boondoggle.

Could the Minister of Public Safety please remind members on the other side of the House why they should voice their constituents' concerns and vote tonight to repeal the ineffective and wasteful long gun registry?

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

3 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the long gun registry does a good job of harassing law-abiding hunters and farmers and it does a good job of wasting money, but it does not do a good job of combatting crime. That is why today, members of this House will have an opportunity to finally fix that problem.

The Leader of the Opposition said, “I want to be in a party that respects the rights of legitimate gun owners. It's an issue of freedom”. Today he said that the long gun registry lacks legitimacy. Today he gets a chance to add his voice as well. Will he be one of those who does what he says, or is he another politician who says one thing and does another?

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Gerard Kennedy Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, recently the RCMP commissioner sent a report to the Minister of Public Safety which contradicts the falsehoods spread by the government about the gun registry. We know it has been kept sitting on his desk for some time because they are trying to suppress it in advance of today's vote.

Could the minister confirm that he has read this report and how long he has had it? Could he tell Canadians why he is withholding the truth that the registry is really a valuable tool that the police need to help keep people safe?

Firearms RegistryOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the report in question will be tabled in this House in accordance with the schedule that is set out in the rules governing reports like that. But Canadians do not need another report to know that the long gun registry is very efficient at harassing law-abiding outdoors enthusiasts and farmers and wasting money, while being terribly inefficient at combatting crime.

Let us all get together. Canadians are watching. Let us fix this wasteful registry tonight.

International AidOral Questions

November 4th, 2009 / 3:05 p.m.

Bloc

Johanne Deschamps Bloc Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, in her report released yesterday, the Auditor General confirmed the government's mismanagement in the area of international aid. She noted that this government has no long-term vision, and that the frequent changes in the agency's policy direction are undermining the effectiveness of its development assistance.

When will this government come up with a coherent, long-term international aid plan?

International AidOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, in fact we agree with the recommendations and the observations of the Auditor General. In fact it was in 2002 that the previous government tried to increase the effectiveness of its aid.

In the short time we have been in office, we have focused geographically and thematically. We have untied our aid. We are ensuring that our projects are going to see real results in countries for those who are living in poverty.

Agriculture and Agri-FoodOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

NDP

Tony Martin NDP Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, cattle farmers from Algoma and other areas are back in Ottawa today because they are facing another crisis.

When Jack Tindall was here in 2004, he spoke for 200 Algoma farmers. Now that number is far less and the same story is unfolding across Canada. Beef farmers face mounting bills, ineffective support programs from Conservative and Liberal governments, and unfair trade barriers.

Will the government put more money into the agri-stability program and give it some teeth, so it can actually work for northern Ontario beef farmers?

Agriculture and Agri-FoodOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, we have done exactly that. Working with our provincial partners and of course the livestock industry itself, we changed the old CAIS program. We re-evaluated agri-stability with reference margins that work for most cases. When that was not enough, we brought in another program called agri-recovery. What that does is cover off livestock producers in flooded areas such as Manitoba and drought areas in Saskatchewan and Alberta.

We have gone further than that. Working with the industry as well, we are having discussions on a livestock insurance program similar to crop insurance. We have also introduced the slaughter improvement program.

All of these things have come to pass through budgets and through movements. Those guys always vote against it.

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

Rodney Weston Conservative Saint John, NB

Mr. Speaker, the European Union recently adopted new regulations that ban seal products in the EU marketplace. The Canadian seal hunt is humane and it is sustainable, and it adheres to rigorous international standards, a fact that has been upheld by independent veterinarians.

It is obvious that any ban on Canadian seal products was not based on science or facts. This ban does not just go against science; it represents a violation of the EU's trade obligations. When the EU Parliament voted for this ban, the Minister of International Trade said that our government would launch a WTO challenge if the ban did not include an acceptable exemption.

Could the minister--

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. Minister of International Trade.

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla B.C.

Conservative

Stockwell Day ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, we had hoped that the European Union would follow the scientific evidence related to the seal hunt. Unfortunately, it did not. It was responding to misinformation by a professional anti-seal hunting lobby.

The Canadian seal hunt is legal. It is done in a sustainable manner and it follows international humane guidelines.

We did make the commitment that should the EU vote to ban Canadian seal hunt products, we would take steps. We have filed a challenge with the WTO. We will protect the Canadian seal hunt.

Presence in GalleryOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I would like to draw to the attention of hon. members the presence in the gallery of six crew members of the NASA mission STS-127: Steve MacLean; Mark Polansky; Julie Payette; Christopher Cassidy; Thomas Marshburn; and David Wolf.

Presence in GalleryOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!