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 #115 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was amendments.

Topics

Tobacco ProductsOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

I am afraid the hon. member's time has expired.

The hon. member for Joliette.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, a May 2007 memo sent by the top military legal adviser, Brigadier General Kenneth Watkin, warns senior officers that the Canadian Forces could face criminal charges if prisoners were transferred to Afghan authorities while there was reason to believe that individuals had been or could be tortured.

Given that there have been proven cases of torture in Afghan prisons, will the government acknowledge that it new full well, as early as 2007, that Canada was violating its international obligations by continuing to transfer prisoners?

National DefenceOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

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

The simple fact is all the Judge Advocate General was doing was giving prudent legal advice and guidance to senior leadership of the Canadian Forces. That is his job. There was a lot going on at the time. He was merely making sure that everyone understood their duties, which they have carried out. All members of the Canadian Forces at all levels have abided by their obligations nationally and internationally for the welfare of the Afghan people in keeping with their good reputation and the great work the Canadian Forces have done in the process.

National DefenceOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Bloc Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, the legal opinion also says that the higher a person is in the military hierarchy, the greater their responsibility.

Will the Minister of National Defence, who is at the top of this hierarchy, acknowledge that by continuing to transfer prisoners to Afghan authorities, he failed in his ministerial responsibilities, contravened international conventions about torture and exposed military personnel to criminal charges, through no fault of their own?

National DefenceOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Edmonton Centre Alberta

Conservative

Laurie Hawn ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, that is absolutely false. The Minister of National Defence, the Chief of the Defence Staff and everyone in the chain of command, adheres to their obligations under international law. We brought in an improved arrangement when the previous arrangement was found to be insufficient. The opposition members are trying to make a news story of something that is merely routine. It is the JAG advising members of their responsibilities and that is his job, and it is their job to abide by those responsibilities and that is what they have done.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Bloc Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, in Cancun, when the federal Minister of the Environment acknowledged that Quebec and the provinces had taken the lead in the fight against climate change, he tacitly acknowledged that he had not fulfilled his own responsibilities.

Will the government finally show some leadership, beginning with agreeing to extend the Kyoto protocol beyond 2012?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Langley B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, our provinces and territories have demonstrated real leadership and will contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and we thank them for that. Quebec, for example, has done its part. In green energy we can be proud of what we have accomplished as a country. There is still a lot of work to be done, but together we will do the right thing for Canada, for the environment and for all Canadians to share in this great, great land.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Bloc Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, he should look at what Quebec has accomplished, not at what the country has accomplished.

Not only is the Conservative government dragging its feet by failing to do its part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but it is also undermining efforts by Quebec and the provinces by refusing to set emissions targets that would provide the foundation for a carbon exchange. This government, which has become an obstacle to Quebec and the international community, must stop behaving like the oil companies' lackey.

This is the last day of negotiations in Cancun. Will the government reconsider its position and agree to do its part to fight climate change?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Langley B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, our government seeks an outcome that includes commitments from all the major emitters and reflects the balance achieved by the Copenhagen accord. The Copenhagen accord has the support of 139 signatory countries, and covers not just 27% of greenhouse gas emissions, as reported by the Bloc, but 85% of total greenhouse gas emissions. When it comes to fighting climate change it is this government that is taking action.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives have been so unhelpful at the Cancun summit, many Canadians are wondering why they bothered to go. The part-time Minister of the Environment went to the summit and dismissed the Kyoto accord, dismissed Canada's responsibility to address its historic greenhouse gas emissions. These are “sidecar issues” he said.

Once again, Canada is seen around the world as a stumbling block to global climate progress. Are the Conservatives really trying to beat the Liberal record and get more fossil awards than they did?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Langley B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, Canada's negotiating team is in Cancun to participate in serious discussions that will lead to a legally binding treaty that includes all the major emitters.

Canadians do not like the publicity stunts of individuals or groups who are trying to embarrass Canada. This government is a constructive player in the Cancun negotiations. We stand up for Canada, we stand up for the environment and we stand up for good Canadian jobs.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

NDP

Libby Davies NDP Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives' irresponsibility also hits hard at home.

The government has only one long-term border testing site on the Athabasca River, 150 kilometres downstream of the tar sands. It was designed to monitor pulp and paper mills, not pollutants from the tar sands. Contamination and low water levels are limiting first nations to practise their traditional way of life.

When will the Conservatives regulate the tar sands? When will they protect the communities that depend on the Athabasca River?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:25 a.m.

Langley B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member knows the government is committed to ensuring the oil sands are developed in the most environmentally responsible way. That is why we struck a federal panel of Canada's leading scientists on water monitoring, headed by Elizabeth Dowdeswell. She will be reporting very soon on whether the monitoring systems are adequate.

Our decisions are based on science, not rhetoric.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives can deny the effects of climate change, but Canadian communities are already being affected. For example, this week people in the Gaspé and Charlevoix were flooded by huge tides driven by strong winds, the likes of which had never been seen before. A state of emergency was declared.

Why abandon communities that have to adapt to climate change by getting rid of the special adaptation fund in March 2011? Why?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Langley B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the member well knows that what he is proposing would only deal with 27% of the total greenhouse gas emissions. This government is focusing on 85% of total greenhouse gas emissions through the Copenhagen accord.

Canada will continue to work with the nations on the five pillars of the accord: financing, mitigation, adaptation, technology, as well as measuring and verification.

International Co-operationOral Questions

December 10th, 2010 / 11:30 a.m.

Liberal

John McKay Liberal Scarborough—Guildwood, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation on March 15 stated to this House:

CIDA thoroughly analyzed KAIROS' program proposal and determined, with regret, that it did not meet the agency's current priorities.

Yesterday, however, the president of CIDA stated that she had recommended that KAIROS receive the grant.

In light of that statement, does the minister wish to correct the statement made by her parliamentary secretary?

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, departments are responsible for making recommendations all the time but ultimately it is the responsibility of the minister to make the decision.

This government is choosing to make its international assistance more efficient, more effective and more focused. This means more food, more education and more help for people living in poverty in developing countries.

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

John McKay Liberal Scarborough—Guildwood, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the minister was sitting beside the CIDA president when she testified that she recommended the KAIROS grant. When asked who put the not in the line recommending the grant, the minister said that she did not know.

If the president and the vice-president of CIDA recommended the grant and if you, minister, do not know who put in the recommendation for the grant, then who did?

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. I would remind the hon. member for Scarborough--Guildwood that he must address his remarks to the Chair but I think the hon. Minister for International Cooperation was the person to whom those words were directed.

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, I will reiterate what I have already clearly said.

Departments always make recommendations to ministers and the minister ultimately decides what course to take. This government always ensures that our international assistance is directed effectively, efficiently and transparently to those people who live in poverty, and that is what we will continue to do.

PensionsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Gerry Byrne Liberal Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte, NL

Mr. Speaker, the Scrooge responsible for the cuts in seniors' pensions told the House that the cuts are now cancelled, cancelled, cancelled. In today's Globe and Mail, the minister's own spokesman, Ryan Sparrow, confirms that the cuts are really just on ho, ho, hold.

According to Sparrow, the government has yet to figure out if it will ever be able to cancel, cancel, cancel these cuts. The minister's statements seem to get richer and richer while the seniors get poorer and poorer.

When will the government finally, formally, honestly and legitimately fix these cuts?

PensionsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Souris—Moose Mountain Saskatchewan

Conservative

Ed Komarnicki ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, the minister has been very clear. The policy change has been cancelled. I do not know what the member does not understand about that.

Everyone affected since May 2010 will have their case reviewed based on the old policy. If the member actually reads the various documentation and listens to the statements, he will see that the department has been instructed by the minister to follow her instructions immediately, and is following through.

PensionsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Gerry Byrne Liberal Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte, NL

Mr. Speaker, according to Service Canada's own pension call centre, the pension cuts are definitely not cancelled.

Just this morning, a pensioner from my riding called the 1-800 line and was told by Service Canada staff that no instruction had been given to revert pension eligibility rules to the old rules, nor had any instruction been given to any staff member to reassess and approve anyone already rejected.

Unless there is something very dishonest the minister has to hide, why does the government not table a copy of the exact pension rule instructions in the House today?

PensionsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Souris—Moose Mountain Saskatchewan

Conservative

Ed Komarnicki ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, I do not know how much more clear I can be. The member needs to listen. He cannot understand that the policy is cancelled. It is the old policy that is in effect.

The member is purposely misleading Canadian seniors. He is trying to score cheap political points on the backs of our poorest and most vulnerable seniors. That is incredibly irresponsible and shameful and it needs to stop.