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House of Commons Hansard #70 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was crime.

Topics

Medical IsotopesOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Halton Ontario

Conservative

Lisa Raitt ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, as the member points out, there is a difference between the medical isotopes being produced at a reactor and those at the end of line with respect to the medical establishment.

Indeed, we are working not only with the reactor groups, we are working with companies in the United States. We had a very important and very successful meeting in the United States on Friday. We are collaborating, and we are working together to deal with this on a continental basis.

Product LabellingOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and his Minister of State (Agriculture) claim that their consultations justify the 98% standard for labelling goods as a product of Canada. It is quite the opposite. Everyone finds this standard unrealistic. We have just learned that, five weeks before announcing the changes with great fanfare, the minister was informed by his officials that very few products could be considered products of Canada.

Can the minister explain why he moved forward after being warned by his officials?

Product LabellingOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of National Revenue and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Once again, I would like to remind members why the government wants to clarify this situation and establish what is a product of Canada and what is processed in Canada. The purpose is to let consumers know what they are getting.

We moved in this direction after conducting consultations, which does not mean that we ignored the comments of processing associations and others.

Product LabellingOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is evident that the Minister of State (Agriculture) was not briefed.

It is unthinkable and unacceptable that the government is responsible for such serious financial repercussions on the agri-food sector. The minister should set aside his false pride, admit his mistake and correct it immediately.

He should listen to producers, processors, consumers, the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food and even his own officials and make 85% the rule.

Product LabellingOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of National Revenue and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, once again, we have to take into consideration the entire agri-food processing sector. At present, we have this 98% rule for Canadian content. Consumers know what to expect. I repeat that we will continue to listen and that there will soon be a meeting with representatives of the processing industry. We will delve further into the matter if necessary.

CBC/Radio-CanadaOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, inflation, rising production costs, shrinking advertising revenues and insufficient funding by Liberal and Conservative governments have led to a $171 million shortfall for CBC/Radio-Canada this year. The icing on the cake is the potential loss of another 5% of its government funding through a strategic review of programs.

What will it take for the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages to realize that insufficient funding of CBC/Radio-Canada is threatening its ability to fulfill its mandate?

CBC/Radio-CanadaOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, as I have said a number of times, our government, our political party, has promised in each of our election campaigns to maintain or increase CBC/Radio-Canada budgets. In each of our four budgets, we have increased the corporation's budget. I have in my hands two plans from the Bloc Québécois, the November 2008 plan for reviving the economy and "Agir maintenant", their aid plan of April 2009. Neither contains a single word on CBC/Radio-Canada—not a word. The Bloc says nothing and has no plan on this matter.

CBC/Radio-CanadaOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

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

Mr. Speaker, I suggest two readings for the minister. First, his own budgets, where he will see that CBC/Radio-Canada is losing and, second, the Bloc's first plan, where he will find measures for cultural affairs.

If the minister truly believes in the future of CBC/Radio-Canada, will he commit now to make permanent the additional $60 million granted annually at the eleventh hour, to give it $40 per capita and predictable annual and long term funding?

CBC/Radio-CanadaOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, we will keep the promise we made in the election campaign of maintaining or increasing the budget of CBC/Radio-Canada. That is what we have done. The $60 million for programming for CBC/Radio-Canada is in the budget. We will honour that commitment.

Let us be clear. There is a big difference between us and the Liberal Party. When it formed the government, it cut $414 million from CBC/Radio-Canada, or one third, causing the loss of over 4,000 jobs. We, on the other hand, have honoured our promise and invested in CBC/Radio-Canada.

HealthOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, why is the minister so inflexible? Does she not understand the anguish and distress of patients awaiting testing to obtain an accurate diagnosis concerning the growth of their cancer? Last week the Quebec City and Sherbrooke university medical centres had no choice but to postpone the appointments of anxious patients.

Will the government finally realize that, by stubbornly refusing to act, it is responsible for the delay in providing the appropriate vital treatments?

HealthOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, again, we are working with the medical isotopes experts and they have advised that in terms of alternatives, Thallium-201 can be used. What does that mean for treatment? This can be used as an alternative for most heart tests, which accounts for approximately half of all the Tc-99 procedures in Canada. Iodine-123 can be used to image kidney and thyroid glands. Gallium-67 is used for the detection of Hodgkin's disease and lymphoma, among other things.

That list of alternatives and options was provided by the medical experts on medical isotopes to provinces and territories.

HealthOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, Dr. Pierre Gfeller, of the Lanaudière regional hospital centre, confirms that they are already experiencing supply problems. At the Sherbrooke university medical centre, Dr. Jean Verreault is already receiving much smaller amounts of isotopes, and the number of appointments having to be postponed will likely grow. At the Quebec City university medical centre and at the one affiliated with Laval University, supplies have dropped below 20%.

Does the government realize that, because of its inaction and incompetence, it has created a major health crisis?

HealthOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, again, let me repeat that the medical experts community has advised of alternatives that are available to provinces and territories. That means other isotopes can be used to assist provinces and territories in managing their supplies. The alternatives, such as thallium, iodine or gallium, can be used in the provinces and territories to deal with the shortage.

HealthOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Liberal Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, for three and a half years the Conservative government has shown contempt for scientific opinion, but when it puts stubborn ideology ahead of patient health and safety, it has gone too far. The president-elect of the Society of Nuclear Medicine said, “It's going to be a disaster”.

Doctors are not alarmists, but they are worried that their patients will not get the critical nuclear medical imaging tests they need.

Does the Conservative government not realize that its strategy of deny, deny, deny is putting Canadians at risk?

HealthOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, since 2007, government and health care providers have developed contingency measures to minimize the impact on patients. That includes using alternative isotopes such as thallium for cardiac scanning.

This morning I again had a conference call with the medical experts community in how we are managing this situation. In terms of how to move forward, we are meeting with them this weekend to again discuss how we can provide assistance and alternatives to the provinces and territories.

HealthOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Liberal Vancouver Centre, BC

Mr. Speaker, this rhetoric is getting to be unacceptable. The government's inaction is jeopardizing critical patient care in B.C. In Victoria, Dr. Kevin Forkheim said the shortage of medical isotopes will affect already stressed diagnostic services on Vancouver Island.

At Northern Health, which services 300,000 people, the director of diagnostics said they could be forced to cancel nuclear imaging tests before the end of June.

Will the Conservatives finally admit we are facing a crisis in patient care? Will they act to protect Canadians?

HealthOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I have been in regular contact with my provincial and territorial counterparts in managing this situation. The medical expert community has provided alternatives for procedures in the provinces and territories. I continue to meet with the medical experts in managing this situation.

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Kelly Block Conservative Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, SK

Mr. Speaker, Canadians expect that when a serious crime is committed in this country the individual responsible for the crime will face an appropriate sentence, but for far too long in this country, individuals convicted of murder have been eligible to apply for parole.

Why are the rights of criminals being placed ahead of the rights of law-abiding citizens, and what message does this send to the families of murder victims and their communities?

Could the minister explain how the government's faint hope legislation will help victims of crime in this country?

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, this government believes that the crime of murder deserves serious time, and this is why we are getting rid of the loophole for lifers. Criminals who commit first or second degree murder will no longer be able to apply for early parole. We are going to support those families who do not want to be victimized over and over again at parole hearings. We stand by those victims.

The Liberals and the NDP have not made up their minds on this legislation, but Canadians have, and they say to pass this legislation.

Minister of Natural ResourcesOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government is going to extreme lengths today, once again, to protect the Minister of Natural Resources.

Last week, the Prime Minister threw out his own rules on ministerial responsibility. Today, there is an attempt in court to muzzle the press and keep a taped conversation from being heard. The Minister of Justice says the government is not a party and would have us believe that this injunction is the work of the same, now unemployed, 26-year-old former staffer it used as a scapegoat last week.

Will the Minister of Justice tell the House who is bankrolling the injunction in Halifax to muzzle the press?

Minister of Natural ResourcesOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, that is a bunch of nonsense. I guess the hon. member did not hear my answer earlier today. The minister is not a party to the action, and the Government of Canada is not involved.

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is now four days since the Federal Court ordered the government to facilitate the immediate return to Canada of Mr. Abdelrazik. He is required to appear before the court at 2 p.m. on July 7, 2009, whether the government launches an appeal or not. He has in his possession a fully paid ticket for June 12.

Can the Minister of Foreign Affairs finally get to his feet in this House and tell us what arrangements he has made to provide the necessary travel for Mr. Abdelrazik to return on June 12?

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I would be glad to tell the House that we are reviewing that decision very carefully and we will be making a decision in due course.

CIDAOral Questions

June 8th, 2009 / 2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Johanne Deschamps Bloc Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of International Cooperation contends that they are generalists at CIDA and that, if they need expertise, they need to go outside. According to her own officials, however, there are five health experts within CIDA, including two medical doctors.

How does the minister reconcile her statement with her officials' comments to the contrary?

CIDAOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, I recognize the capacity and the expertise of the CIDA staff. However, together we have discussed the level of expertise that we will require as we go forward to ensure that our aid will be maximized in its effectiveness and efficiency.

We always want to benefit from Canadian expertise in all the work we do.