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House of Commons Hansard #10 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

International AidOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, as this government has said since it took office, we want to ensure that our international efforts and our international assistance is going to bring real change for people living in poverty. That is why we are supporting projects that actually improve water, health care and education.

However, there are many good projects that are undertaken by religiously-affiliated organizations and we will continue to support those projects by those organizations.

International AidOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

John McKay Liberal Scarborough—Guildwood, ON

Mr. Speaker, maybe we should talk about one of those projects. Many reports describe CIDA's response to the rape crisis in Congo as wasted: “Too much of Canada's $15 million in aid going to T-shirts and posters instead of justice and prevention”. The sole exception to the waste was a $75,000 KAIROS grant helping victims pursue justice.

Why did the CIDA minister keep the T-shirts and posters program, and cut the justice and prevention program?

International AidOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, let me reiterate that we have been reviewing all of the projects. We have been reviewing all of the programs at CIDA. As with this year's budget and every budget that we have articulated, we want to increase the effectiveness of our programs. This process is being undertaken and will continue to be undertaken to ensure we get value for our international aid dollars.

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Joe Volpe Liberal Eglinton—Lawrence, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is becoming increasingly obvious that the government could not care less about consumers. The government is blaming Toyota for the recent vehicle recall instead of taking action for Canadians. This morning, Toyota pointed a finger at Transport Canada.

Departmental documents show that the minister knew about the problems long before the media became involved.

When will the minister stop saying that he has not seen or heard anything?

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the safety of Canadian motorists is a top priority of my department. Transport Canada will work to ensure all legal measures are taken and the full force of Canadian law is brought about to ensure that motorists are safe in this country.

We appreciate the work of the transport committee. If we can make Canadian laws safer to better protect consumers in the future, we are pleased to work with the member opposite in a non-partisan basis, as I know it is how he always approaches most issues.

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Joe Volpe Liberal Eglinton—Lawrence, ON

Mr. Speaker, even on this issue, because over 90 incidents of unintended acceleration in Toyota vehicles were reported to Transport Canada since this party came to power, yet the minister chose to do nothing. Worse, today he complains that Toyota should have notified Transport Canada sooner, but he knew about the problems. He should have been investigating them proactively. Instead, he makes empty statements about car safety.

Will he rise today and take responsibility for ensuring that unintended acceleration problems will not happen again in Canadian cars?

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we have seen a decline in fatalities on our roads every year in this country. That is because of the hard work of our police officers, the hard work of groups such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and the dedicated professional public servants at Transport Canada.

We accept that we have an important responsibility to follow up on each and every reasonable complaint and to ensure that Canadian motorists are safe. We are continuing to see fatalities decline. We are prepared to work in a non-partisan fashion with the committee and all parties in the House to learn what happened from this experience, and to make our roads even safer.

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Rodney Weston Conservative Saint John, NB

Mr. Speaker, the community access program has been successful at providing community groups across this country with Internet access. Its benefits can be found in libraries, among seniors groups and even in hospitals.

Could the Minister of Industry update the House about the current and future status of the community access program?

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, indeed, I can confirm that this particular Internet access program is being funded. It has been funded in budget 2010. The funding was always there. This program works hand in glove with our overarching strategy to make sure that not only Internet but broadband services are available to rural Canadians and Canadians in remote communities as well.

We believe in Canadians all across this country having better access to Internet and broadband services, and we are acting on it.

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, while the U.S. Congress, the national highway traffic safety administration, the securities and exchange commission, and other officials conducted investigations into Toyota, Transport Canada was saying that no further investigations were needed. Under substantial pressure, Toyota officials finally appeared before committee only to say that they will continue to treat Canada as second class.

There was no apology from Mr. Toyoda and no Canadian safety research centre. However, they did shed light on one important fact. Transport Canada does not have the adequate resources or adequate staff to do the job. No wonder the minister did not want the hearings.

Is there anything else Transport Canada is hiding?

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we have tried to approach this issue in a non-partisan fashion. Road safety is not a partisan issue. I offered to the member for Windsor West today that we are prepared to hear any suggestions on what we can do to make road safety even better than it is today.

We have seen a steady decline in fatalities on our roads and that is because of the dedicated work of the professional public servants at Transport Canada and the industry working collaboratively to make things happen. We are obviously following up every single complaint that has come forward with respect to Toyota and other manufacturers. We will continue to do so.

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Brian Masse NDP Windsor West, ON

Mr. Speaker, this became a partisan issue because this minister refused to do his job last November when the problems first surfaced. Today at committee, we witnessed the worst sort of blame game, with Toyota blaming Transport Canada. Government members discovered for the first time that Toyota might be a problem.

We have all learned from the massive Toyota recalls that American regulators are doing more to protect Canadians' safety than this government.

Does the minister intend to reform the Motor Vehicle Safety Act? As Toyota's plan stands today, it will still be done in the United States and Japan. Is he going to let foreigners determine the serious nature of the concerns of Canadians to protect ourselves over here?

Automotive IndustryOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we have followed up every single complaint that was made by Canadian motorists and we have looked into every single issue that was put forward. As I have already told the member in the House and before question period, if we can learn from the events of the past six months and work in a non-partisan basis to make Canadian roads safer, he can count on the full support of this government.

AgricultureOral Questions

March 16th, 2010 / 2:45 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of State for Agriculture who, as always, is out of touch with the concerns of agricultural producers, sparked outrage last Friday at the convention of the Fédération de la relève agricole du Québec, when he said that Chinese investors buying farmland in Quebec was “good news”.

Can the minister, who toured and met with young producers last fall, tell us whether many of them asked him to promote the sale of farmland to Chinese interests?

AgricultureOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, it is unfortunate that no Bloc Quebecois member was present at the convention that evening. Personally, I was there and I heard the officials representing the Fédération de la relève agricole du Québec. I heard their views on this issue. What these young producers object to is the acquisition of land by holdings, not by immigrants who simply want to use the land in a proper fashion.

I remind the Bloc Quebecois member that this is a provincial jurisdiction. The management of farmland is the responsibility of Quebec's Commission de protection du territoire agricole.

AgricultureOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

André Bellavance Bloc Richmond—Arthabaska, QC

Mr. Speaker, the president of the Fédération de la relève agricole du Québec, Frédéric Marcoux, condemned the comments made by the Minister of State for Agriculture.

Instead of discouraging young producers, should the minister not follow up on the Bloc Quebecois' proposals and implement a true tax system that supports the next generation of farmers, instead of the dismantling of farming businesses?

AgricultureOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Jonquière—Alma Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, I met with officials of the Fédération de la relève agricole du Québec on a few occasions. We are currently developing a plan to support the next generation of farmers. Again, if the Bloc Quebecois had been present at the convention, it would have realized that these people are concerned, like many other people in the rest of Canada, about the acquisition of vast pieces of land by holdings.

Given that context, it is my understanding that Quebec officials are monitoring the situation very closely.

TelecommunicationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the community access program is a visionary initiative that seeks to make the Internet accessible to all Canadians. In 2007, the Conservatives reduced that program's annual budget from $25 million down to $14 million. Today, they are eliminating it almost completely. The result will be that in Nova Scotia, for example, this service will be eliminated in 163 schools, hospitals and community centres.

This government claims that it wants all Canadians to be connected. How does it explain such hypocrisy?

TelecommunicationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, as I said before, funding is provided for this program is our 2010 budget. That initiative is still included in our budget.

I should also add that we support Canadians living in rural areas, and it is important that they have access to the Internet and to wireless services.

We are supporting these rural and remote Canadians, and we will continue to do so.

TelecommunicationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, while the Minister of Industry is recovering from whiplash after backtracking on the CAP earlier today, concerning his riding, I would like to quote the minister of state for science, who said yesterday:

--that the government put $200 million toward providing broadband to every community in this country.

I want to focus on the words “every community”. Did the minister say that his government will provide broadband to every community in Canada?

TelecommunicationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, what I can confirm to this House is that we have a multifaceted strategy. Part of it involves the Internet and part of it involves broadband services. Perhaps the hon. member should learn the difference between the two. It is important to understand the difference.

We have a $200 million program designed to serve those living in the most remote, most rural communities in our country. We are supporting people in those communities and we will continue to do so.

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, less than four months before the third national aboriginal women's summit, we have learned that the government has revoked its funding.

Federal, provincial and territorial leaders recognize its importance. Both previous Conservative ministers for the Status of Women said the summit was valid and vital for the support of aboriginal women, their families and communities.

How can the minister who claims to defend women justify the loss of funding for this summit where women from across Canada will be addressing maternal and children's health and education, and violence against women?

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, I will admit I do not have the details of the issues she is referring to. I will speak to her after question period and try to get to the bottom of it.

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of State for Status of Women claims to be an advocate who has worked to increase prosperity for women.

On this and other measures, she has failed. Her government has undermined Status of Women Canada, and slashed funding for women's organizations and advocacy groups. Her plan to fix child care is $3.25 a week and no new spaces.

If the minister is really committed to equality, how has she allowed this systematic attack on women to continue from one budget to the next and even within her own ministry?

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey Ontario

Conservative

Helena Guergis ConservativeMinister of State (Status of Women)

Mr. Speaker, I would like to say to the member, as I have many times, she is actually wrong.

Under the leadership of this government and under this Prime Minister's leadership, we have seen a dramatic increase in the funding at Status of Women Canada which has allowed for an increase in the ability of a number of grassroots organizations now to support those who are the most vulnerable across Canadian society.

There is a focus on three pillars: ending violence against women, women in leadership and democracy, and economic security for women.

Let me say there has been a 69% increase in the number of grassroots organizations that are able to deliver to the most vulnerable across Canadian society as a result of this positive change.