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House of Commons Hansard #72 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was artists.

Topics

TradeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, human rights is not an ideology. It is a principle to which the Conservative Party should be adhering.

A recently declassified U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency report describes President Uribe as “a Colombian politician dedicated to collaboration with the Medellín Cartel at high government levels. Uribe is a close personal friend of Pablo Escobar”. He is a notorious drug lord.

Why is the Prime Minister and the leader of the Liberal Party legitimizing this criminal regime?

TradeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

South Shore—St. Margaret's Nova Scotia

Conservative

Gerald Keddy ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, this government believes that improving human rights is inextricably linked to the economy, jobs and opportunity. We have proven time and time again that when people have better jobs and more opportunity, human rights improve.

The reality and principle here is the NDP is simply against anything that improves the status of any group of people that involves a free trade agreement. Whether it is a free trade agreement with Peru, Colombia or Mexico, those members have never supported a free trade agreement.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc La Pointe-de-l'Île, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, Quebec's National Assembly unanimously adopted a motion calling on the federal government to bring Nathalie Morin and her children home as soon as possible. Nathalie Morin and her children are being held against their will and are being malnourished and mistreated.

In this case, there is no reason the government cannot negotiate their return with Saudi Arabia.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, this is a very complex family dispute matter with no easy solution.

Due to international law, Ms. Morin and her husband must resolve custody before a Saudi court before the children, who are all Saudi citizens, are able to return to Canada.

Our government has been very active on this file, having talked with Ms. Morin and her mother over 300 times in the past year.

With the assistance of the Saudi officials, we are working to resolve this issue.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc La Pointe-de-l'Île, QC

Mr. Speaker, when asked about Nathalie Morin's case, lawyer Julius Grey said:

I will be filing suit against the Government of Canada, which ... has been completely unsympathetic. ... They are not doing anything. They are hiding. They are hiding behind all kinds of excuses.

In the case of Nathalie and her children, sections 6, 7, and 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms are being ignored. Will the minister bring them home soon or not?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, let me repeat what I said.

Due to international law, Ms. Morin and her husband must resolve the custody issue before a Saudi court, because the children are all Saudi citizens.

This government has been engaged on this file. We have talked to Ms. Morin and her mother over 300 times. We must wait for the Saudi officials to resolve this issue.

HealthOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the spread of H1N1 influenza in Manitoba's aboriginal communities has caused great concern to the World Health Organization. It is considering calling the outbreak a full-blown pandemic.

The province of Manitoba offered the federal government help 13 times since May 4 to plan for a possible pandemic in aboriginal communities. Manitoba understands the issue; the World Health Organization understands the issue; only the Conservatives do not understand the issue.

Why has there been such a delay in response?

HealthOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I have been in regular contact with my colleague, Minister Oswald, from Manitoba in regard to H1N1.

In fact, we have been planning for this pandemic since 2006. Our government invested $1 billion to increase our preparedness to respond to public health threats such as a pandemic, which includes first nations communities.

I will continue to work with the Public Health Agency, Indian and Northern Affairs, and aboriginal organizations to ensure a co-ordinated approach.

As well, Health Canada has provided additional nurses to the community and--

HealthOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Winnipeg South Centre.

HealthOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, mothers have lost their babies, and children have received inadequate care. The federal government was not prepared for this outbreak in aboriginal communities.

Conditions in these communities continue to deteriorate. Homes are overcrowded. Communities do not have running water. The virus continues to spread. Experts warn that the worst may be yet to come.

What concrete plan does the government have to prepare all aboriginal communities for a possible pandemic?

HealthOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, since April of this year we have been acting on our pandemic plan, which includes first nations communities. We have remained vigilant on this issue. We are in regular contact with the WHO, my counterparts in the international community, as we deal with this situation.

I will continue to work with my colleague in Manitoba as we deal with this situation, as well as the aboriginal leaders of those communities.

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Niki Ashton NDP Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, the World Health Organization is about to announce H1N1 as a full-blown pandemic, and it has singled out its impact on Canada's aboriginal people. Everyone remembers what happened when hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. This is Canada's New Orleans.

Why is there a disproportionate impact on first nations? It is because of a lack of resources, a lack of planning, and fundamentally the third world living conditions that aboriginal people face.

When will the government call an emergency summit with aboriginal leaders, provinces and territories to put together a response?

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, as an aboriginal person, I find that line of questioning insulting.

H1N1 is not an illness that applies only to aboriginal people. It does not see race. It does not see class. It does not see boundaries.

We need to respond accordingly, and we have. We have a pandemic plan. We are implementing it.

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Niki Ashton NDP Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, I would ask the minister to come and visit St. Theresa Point and talk to the people who are currently dealing with this crisis.

The government has failed to deal decisively with this surge in flu cases. Chief McDougall of St. Theresa Point has called for a field hospital to deal with the situation that is so bad. If we can do this in war zones, why can we not do it on the front lines of a coming pandemic?

When is the federal government going to deal with the fundamental root cause of this, which is the third-world living conditions that first nations in Canada face? When will the government wake up to the severity of what is happening?

HealthOral Questions

3 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the pandemic plan that was established for this country in 2006 applies to every single Canadian. We are implementing that plan in partnership with the health care service providers of provinces and territories.

I will continue to work with my colleagues in Manitoba as we deal with the situation, and we will continue to monitor and remain vigilant as we deal with the situation in Manitoba.

JusticeOral Questions

June 10th, 2009 / 3 p.m.

Conservative

Ed Fast Conservative Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, there is a stunning silence from the opposition parties when it comes to speaking up for victims of crime.

Although our Conservative government has done much to improve public safety, Canadians know there is still much work to be done in combating violent and drug-related crime. What we need are new strategies to stay ahead of those who victimize Canadians and terrorize our communities.

Could the Minister of Justice explain to this House what our government is doing to combat organized crime and gangs in our country?

JusticeOral Questions

3 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for his excellent question.

Canadians have been very clear. They want their government to be tough on crime, and that is exactly what this government is delivering. We are getting rid of the faint hope clause and double credit for time served. We are targeting gangs, and this week the House passed the strongest drug bill in Canadian history.

The Bloc and the NDP oppose this. I can understand why drug dealers and gangsters would oppose that bill, but what is in it for the Bloc and the NDP? That is what I want to know.

Canada-U.S. BorderOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Todd Russell Liberal Labrador, NL

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Public Safety will not talk to the Mohawks of Akwesasne about the border crossing controversy he has precipitated. He will not talk to Mayor Kilger of Cornwall. He will not talk to the Government of Ontario.

The only person he will talk to is himself, and despite all the opinion to the contrary, he has convinced himself to move the Cornwall Island border post.

When will the Minister of Public Safety lower his hackles, drop the attitude, pick up the phone and talk to the Mohawks of Akwesasne?

Canada-U.S. BorderOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, there has been a lot of talk going on, not just in this House. In fact, the Canada Border Services Agency has met and spoken with the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne close to a dozen times, I think, in the past year to discuss our implementation initiative.

It is an initiative that is intended to protect the safety and security of the travelling public, of the community, and of our border services agents. That is why a decision was taken by this government three years ago to do that at every border crossing in Canada.

We do not think there should be any exceptions. We think that safety and security matter to everyone and we think that every Canadian is entitled to the equal protection of the law.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

3:05 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 rise on a point of order regarding an incident that occurred during question period.

During question period the member for Wascana quite clearly accused the Minister of Natural Resources of not telling the truth. Mr. Speaker, you know as well as every member of this place knows that is unparliamentary language.

All of this resulted, of course, from an answer that the Minister of Natural Resources gave indicating, quite correctly, that while the member for Wascana was the minister of natural resources, he did absolutely nothing to inform the public about the problems with the MAPLE reactor.

When he accused the Minister of Natural Resources of not telling the truth, he breached protocol seriously in the House. Unparliamentary language is addressed in Marleau and Montpetit on page 525. It is also contained on page 149 of Beauchesne's, which talks about language only being used that would be worthy of this place.

Mr. Speaker, what makes things even more distressing is the fact that the member for Wascana used this language in a direct question. He did not do it in a heckle. He did not do it in a moment of passion. He did it in a deliberate and premeditated mode.

The honourable thing for any member of the House to do when they have been using unparliamentary language is to rise and apologize and withdraw the remarks.

Mr. Speaker, if the member for Wascana does not do that, I would invite you to check the blues and then Hansard to confirm what I have just stated.

One way or the other, Mr. Speaker, I will guarantee to the House that the member for Wascana will apologize.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, obviously the government is engaged in deep damage control. It is trying to develop a procedural smokescreen to hide its deficiencies in respect of managing the isotope crisis in this country where it has failed twice abjectly in the last 18 months to safeguard the health and safety of Canadians. That is the issue.

The Conservatives are trying to sling mud and trying to confuse the issue to hide their own defects.

Mr. Speaker, I invite you to check the blues. You will find the language that I chose was very careful and it was not beyond the rules of parliamentary procedure.

Oral QuestionsPoints of OrderOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I have before me at the moment the list of unparliamentary terms in Beauchesne's that the hon. parliamentary secretary referred to. Of course, I would not want to read out the list.

I will check the transcript of the proceedings, as invited by both hon. members, and will come back to the House in due course. There are a number of expressions that are very close to what was used, but none are precisely the same. I will check the record against the list in this book.

Government Response to PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 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, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to 22 petitions.

Interparliamentary DelegationsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Yasmin Ratansi Liberal Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34(1) I have the honour to present to the House, in both official languages, the report of the Canadian delegation of the Canadian Group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union concerning its participation at the 118th IPU assembly and related meetings in Cape Town, South Africa, from April 13 to 18, 2008.

Pursuant to Standing Order 34(1) I have the honour to present to the House, in both official languages, the report of the Canadian delegation of the Canadian Group of the Inter-Parliamentary Union concerning its participation at the United Nations Parliamentary Stakeholder Forum on Official Development Assistance, in Rome, Italy, on June 12 and 13, 2008.

Interparliamentary DelegationsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34(1), I have the honour to present to the House, in both official languages, the report of the Canadian delegation of the Canadian branch of the Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie (APF) respecting its participation in the seminar of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the meeting of the Parliamentary Affairs Commission of the APF, held in Fribourg, Switzerland, from March 23 to 25, 2009.