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House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was relationship.

Topics

HealthOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would first like to thank the minister for the briefing this morning. We were told there are 55 million doses in the antiviral stockpile. I understand that the chief public health officer and the CFO of the Public Health Agency are in negotiations with Treasury Board to buy more.

Will the minister assure Canadians that sufficient money will be provided for whatever the agency officials deem necessary to protect Canadians?

HealthOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, yes. The Public Health Agency of Canada is working with the provinces and territories. Unlike the United States, the provinces and territories already have a stockpile of antivirals in their hands and they will continue to make the decisions as to when to use that.

As the member is well aware, we have six confirmed cases in Canada. As the need arises, we will assess the situation.

HealthOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, if we assume that the health of Canadians is a priority, that health can only be guaranteed through preventive measures and that this prevention requires adequate funding, then why was the recent budget of the Public Health Agency of Canada cut by the incredible amount of $12 million for preparing and responding to a pandemic such as the one now shaping up?

HealthOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, our government's highest priority is the health, safety and security of Canadians. In budget 2006, we invested $1 billion to increase Canada's preparedness to respond to public health threats, including the influenza pandemic.

This year alone, our government invested $24 billion in transfers to the provinces and territories to deliver health care in the areas of prevention. They are responsible for the delivery of health care.

HealthOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, at at his scrum this morning, the Minister of State (Agriculture) was not clear about what will happen to seasonal Mexican workers. The Quebec agriculture sector, in particular, is very dependent on these workers, as he knows. They have already started arriving in Canada.

He says that two doctors will be assigned to monitor 15,000 Mexican workers. However, can he guarantee that the workers will be examined before setting foot on the plane? Although we are hoping for the best, if something does happen, is there a plan B to replace these workers? Farmers need them.

HealthOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his question.

As I stated earlier, we have put additional measures in place. There are considerably more than just two doctors available to check the temporary Mexican workers. What this means is that there will be two doctors checking each temporary worker who arrives in Canada. Naturally we will be monitoring the situation closely. If other measures are needed, we are prepared to take them.

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Just like the Liberals, the Conservatives are using Canada Day to spew their propaganda. Their desire to force-feed Quebec like some sort of goose forms a sharp contrast to other areas of activity, especially tax harmonization, the forestry industry and equalization, areas in which Quebec is not receiving its fair share.

How else can the minister explain his determination to invest $3.2 million in Quebec for Canada Day, out of a total budget of $3.7 million, in other words, 85% of it, if not for his objectionable desire for propaganda and visibility?

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, those figures are completely inaccurate. The program that the member is talking about is worth $6.7 million. What she is saying is completely false, as usual.

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Carole Lavallée Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, after the sponsorship scandal, the Conservative government said it would do things differently than the Liberals did, and that transparency would be a priority.

With this Canada Day file, does the minister not realize that he is doing the same thing as the Liberals, by using government money to spew their propaganda in Quebec?

Arts and CultureOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, leaving aside the factual inaccuracies that my colleague talks about with regard to the specific program, she is talking about the celebrate Canada program.

We are doing things differently from the Liberals. In 2006, the Ottawa Citizen did an analysis of celebrate Canada. The records found that after the 2004 election, 79% of funding went to projects based in Liberal ridings.

When we invest in this country's arts and culture communities, we are doing it for the best interests of all Canadian, not just friends of the Liberal Party.

Public ServiceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Bloc Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, this morning, the vice-president of the Public Service Alliance pointed out that the 75/25 policy covers federal jobs, not office space. Simple logic applies: Gatineau wants its fair share of the federal presence because of the economic spinoffs.

Will the Conservative government quit its word games, accept its responsibilities and correct this injustice, which has been going on for far too long?

Public ServiceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec)

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague for his question.

The Minister of Public Works and Government Services is well aware of this issue. Analysis is ongoing and, as always, he will act on his responsibilities.

Public ServiceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Bloc Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, like the Liberals, the Conservatives have abandoned the Outaouais. For every dollar this government spends, just a penny and a half goes to our region. The research centre situation is just as bad. There are 27 of them in Ottawa and not a single one in Gatineau, which means that our region has been deprived of 1,500 jobs.

How can the minister expect anyone to believe him when he talks about job creation in the Outaouais when, as the employer, he is unable to give Gatineau its due?

Public ServiceOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec)

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Public Works and Government Services is waiting for the analyses. I would remind the member who asked the question that Quebec means all regions of Quebec, and that the Minister of Public Works is analyzing the presence of the federal government not only in Quebec, but in all provinces with an eye to fairness.

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Valeriote Liberal Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian economy received another blow with a 60% reduction of GM's workforce, a number far greater than originally projected. The loss of four GM brand names will close over 300 dealerships with 15,000 more jobs lost. Losses are cascading.

Every dealer, auto worker and analyst tells me that the government's reaction is too little, too late, with the minister simply taking instructions from the U.S. Announcements with nothing deployed do not help.

When will the government finally show leadership and respond to this crisis with immediate solutions?

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I thank the ex-auto critic for the question.

We have been working daily with American officials and with the McGuinty government in Ontario for a comprehensive solution but the fact is that GM must restructure itself in a severe and quick way in order to ensure that it can survive and create jobs and opportunities in the future.

That is our position, the position of the Obama administration and the position of the McGuinty government. The Liberals' position is to say something in this House and say something completely different at the other end of the country when they are saying that they do not support the auto sector. It is the same party, incidentally, that says that it wants to raise taxes. That is not acceptable.

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Martha Hall Findlay Liberal Willowdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, 15 months have passed and a much wanted announcement of a fund from budget 2008 has not been touched. Not one penny of the $250 million automotive innovation fund has actually been invested and worse, during 15 months of a drastically deteriorating auto sector.

Could the Minister of Industry help us understand why his government has for 15 critical months ignored even its own offer to help the auto sector?

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, that is incorrect. Just before September 2008, this government made an announcement that it was working with Ford Canada on precisely the auto innovation fund. We are having continuing discussions with other automakers and those discussions are ongoing.

Two weeks ago I made an announcement about how we are working with the private sector and with academia for research and development in the auto sector. That is the kind of leadership we are showing, rather than raising taxes.

Public SafetyOral Questions

April 27th, 2009 / 2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, as a result of the RCMP using two different records management systems, one for British Columbia and another for the rest of the country, the government is wasting at least $9 million a year and, in fact, risking the safety of Canadians.

What steps, if any, will the minister take to end this mismanagement and incompetence?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member is aware, the province of British Columbia relies, in large part, on the RCMP for local policing. The data system to which he is referring is one that was actually promoted and championed by the Government of British Columbia in order to ensure that it could have a uniform information system so that municipal forces, such as in Vancouver, could integrate and share information with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

It is important for that cross-sharing of information to occur to ensure the most effective combatting of crime, including gang crime, in British Columbia, where it is important that those police forces work together.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Liberal Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, that is the lamest excuse I have ever heard.

The RCMP is a national force and it can have a national system. The issue is not only that $9 million a year are being wasted but that the person who blew the whistle on this was shunted aside. He was made persona non grata.

Would the minister undertake to conduct an investigation to determine whether or not Gavin Berube was made persona non grata as a result of actually blowing the whistle on this matter?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the function of the RCMP in most of British Columbia is local policing, which is pursuant to a contract with the Province of British Columbia. British Columbia actually pays 90% of the cost of that policing and the federal government pays 10% to reflect the federal policing share.

Similarly, that is the case with this database. When the province of British Columbia wants it to work effectively in British Columbia for local policing, we need to acknowledge that it makes a bit of sense, which is why we want to see the closest integration to combat crime as effectively as possible in British Columbia for British Columbians.

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Dona Cadman Conservative Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, this week has been declared as National Victims of Crime Awareness Week.

Victims' rights is an issue that is very dear to me and was especially important to my late husband Chuck, who was well-known to many members here today. For years he and I criticized our justice system for focusing too much on the rights of criminals. All too often the victims felt they were victimized a second time by the justice system.

Could the minister advise the House of the significant efforts taken by our government to ensure that the victims of crime have a greater voice within the justice system?

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I, too, remember Chuck as a venerable and determined fighter for the cause of victims, a tireless champion, and his early passing was a great loss to his family and to all Canadians.

Our government believes that for too long the justice system has all but ignored the experience of victims, their concerns and their interests, which is why we have decided to take action to rebalance our justice system to take them into account.

We have taken action on things like establishing an ombudsman for victims. We have included victims in National Parole Board hearings. We have provided video conferencing for their involvement. We are doing other things to provide online services and more. We are taking the side of victims, not criminals.

Canadian Flag PinsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week, the Minister of Canadian Heritage tried to duck responsibility for the fact that his office, during the largest manufacturing meltdown in Canadian history, outsourced the production of Canadian flag pins to China. Rather than taking responsibility for that action, he tried to shift blame to the parliamentary boutique.

I called the parliamentary gift shop and it assured me that, unlike the Department of Canadian Heritage, all its pins are made in Canada.

How can we count on the minister to stand up for Canadian jobs when he cannot even stand up and give a straightforward answer?