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House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

Canada--Jordan Economic Growth and Prosperity ActRoutine Proceedings

10 a.m.

Abbotsford B.C.

Conservative

Canada-Panama Economic Growth and Prosperity ActRoutine Proceedings

10 a.m.

Abbotsford B.C.

Conservative

Ed Fast ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

National DefenceCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

10 a.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the first report of the Standing Committee on National Defence.

In accordance with its order of reference on Friday, November 4, the committee has considered Bill C-16, An Act to amend the National Defence Act (military judges), and agreed on Tuesday, November 15, to report it without amendment.

Employment Insurance ActRoutine Proceedings

November 15th, 2011 / 10 a.m.

NDP

Fin Donnelly NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-345, An Act to amend the Employment Insurance Act (special benefits).

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce legislation that would amend the Employment Insurance Act to extend the maximum period for which special benefits for catastrophic illness, injury or quarantine may be paid from 15 to 52 weeks.

This bill was inspired by Natalie Thomas, a cancer survivor from Coquitlam, whose story touched me personally and made me realize the importance and necessity of changing the Employment Insurance Act. Another cancer survivor, Marie-Hélène Dubé from Montreal, has gathered hundreds of thousands of signatures for a petition that calls for these changes.

Canadians who are struck with a catastrophic illness should be focusing on recovery, not on how they survive financially. For families throughout the country who have been touched with illnesses, such as cancer, that is difficult enough to cope with without worrying about their medical benefits expiring. This is why I am introducing this bill today and I encourage all members of the House to support it.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, if Questions Nos. 161, 162 and 163 could be made orders for returns, these returns would be tabled immediately.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

The Speaker

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Question No. 161Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

NDP

Mike Sullivan NDP York South—Weston, ON

With regard to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada funding in the riding of York South—Weston for the last five fiscal years: (a) what is the total amount of spending by (i) year, (ii) program; and (b) what is the amount of each spending item by (i) Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership (ASEP), (ii) Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy, (iii) Aboriginal Skills and Training Strategic Investment Fund, (iv) Adult Learning Literacy and Essential Skills Program, (v) Apprenticeship Completion Grant, (vi) Apprenticeship Incentive Grant, (vii) Career Development Services Research (Employment Programs), (viii) Canada--European Union Program for Cooperation in Higher Education, Training and Youth (International Academic Mobility Program), (ix) Canada Summer Jobs (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (x) Career Focus (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (xi) Children and Families (Social Development Partnerships Program), (xii) Contributions for Consultation and Partnership-Building and Canadian-Based Cooperative Activities (International Trade and Labour Program), (xiii) Disability Component (Social Development Partnerships Program), (xiv) Employment Programs--Career Development Services Research, (xv) Enabling Accessibility Fund, (xvi) Enabling Fund for Official Language Minority Communities, (xvii) Federal Public Service Youth Internship Program (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (xviii) Fire Prevention Grants, (xix) Fire Safety Organizations, (xx) Foreign Credential Recognition Program, (xxi) Homelessness Partnering Strategy, (xxii) International Academic Mobility--Canada--European Union Program for Cooperation in Higher Education, Training and Youth, (xxiii) International Academic Mobility--North American Mobility in Higher Education, (xxiv) International Labour Institutions in which Canada Participates Grants (International Trade and Labour Program), (xxv) International Trade and Labour Program (ITLP) Contributions for Consultation and Partnership-Building and Canadian-Based Cooperative Activities, (xxvi) International Trade and Labour Program (ITLP) Grants for Technical Assistance and Foreign-Based Cooperative Activities, (xxvii) International Trade and Labour Program (ITLP) International Labour Institutions in which Canada Participates Grants, (xxviii) Labour-Management Partnership Program, (xxix) Labour Market Agreements, (xxx) Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities, (xxxi) Labour Market Development Agreements, (xxxii) Labour Mobility, (xxxiii) New Horizons for Seniors Program, (xxxiv) Occupational Health and Safety, (xxxv) Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities, (xxxvi) Organizations that Write Occupational Health and Safety Standards, (xxxvii) Sector Council Program, (xxxviii) Skills and Partnership Fund--Aboriginal, (xxxix) Skills Link (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (xl) Small Project Component (Enabling Accessibility Fund), (xli) Social Development Partnerships Program--Children and Families, (xlii) Social Development Partnerships Program--Disability Component, (xliii) Surplus Federal Real Property for Homelessness Initiative, (xliv) Targeted Initiative for Older Workers, (xv) Technical Assistance and Foreign-Based Cooperative Activities Grants (International Trade and Labour Program), (xlvi) Work-Sharing, (xlvii) Youth Awareness, (xlviii) Youth Employment Strategy--Canada Summer Jobs, (xlix) Youth Employment Strategy--Career Focus, (l) Youth Employment Strategy--Federal Public Service Youth Internship Program, (li) Youth Employment Strategy--Skills Link?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 162Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Liberal

Rodger Cuzner Liberal Cape Breton—Canso, NS

With respect to Employment Insurance (EI) processing centres and EI call centres: (a) how many EI processing centres were there at the beginning of fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, and where were they located; (b) what was the volume of EI applications processed at each EI processing centre for fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (c) what was the average EI applications processing time for each processing centre for fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (d) broken down by permanent and term, how many positions were there at each EI processing centre at the beginning of fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011; (e) how many employees in temporary term positions were hired at each EI processing centre to manage the anticipated increase in EI applications resulting from job losses during the 2008-2009 recession and the resulting Economic Action Plan; (f) how many permanent position and term positions will be eliminated at each EI processing site between April 1, 2011 and March 31, 2014; (g) what was the staff turnover rate per EI processing centre for fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (h) what was the cost to train an EI processing agent at the end of fiscal year 2011; (i) what was the per foot leasing cost per EI processing centre at the end of fiscal year 2011; (j) which EI processing sites have dedicated staff recruiters; (k) what is the cost per EI processing location of staff recruitment; (l) how many EI call centres were there at the beginning of fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, and where were they located; (m) what was the volume of calls at each EI call centre for fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (n) how many positions, broken down by permanent and term, were there at each EI call centre at the beginning of fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011; (o) how many temporary term positions at each EI call centre were hired to manage the anticipated increase in EI inquiries resulting from job losses during the 2008-2009 recession and the resulting Economic Action Plan; (p) how many permanent positions and term positions will be eliminated at each EI call site between April 1, 2011 and March 31, 2014; (q) what was the staff turnover per EI call centre for fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (r) what was the cost to train an EI call agent at the end of fiscal year 2011; (s) what was the per foot leasing costs per EI call centre at the end of fiscal year 2011; (t) which EI call centre sites have dedicated staff recruiters; (u) what is the cost per location of staff recruitment; (v) what were the national Service Level standards for calls answered by an agent for EI call centres for fiscal years 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (w) what was the actual Service Level for calls answered by an agent, achieved nationally and per EI call centre site, for fiscal years 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2008, 2010, and 2011, to date; (x) what was the annual percentage of EI calls made to EI call centres that received a high volume message for fiscal years 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011, to date; (y) what is the percentage of EI benefit payment notifications issued within 28 days of filing; (z) what are age breakdowns of each EI applicant at each EI processing site during fiscal years 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 163Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

NDP

Carol Hughes NDP Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing, ON

With regard to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada funding in the riding of Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing for the last five fiscal years: (a) what is the total amount of spending by (i) year, (ii) program; and (b) what is the amount of each spending item by (i) Aboriginal Skills and Employment Partnership (ASEP), (ii) Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy, (iii) Aboriginal Skills and Training Strategic Investment Fund, (iv) Adult Learning Literacy and Essential Skills Program, (v) Apprenticeship Completion Grant, (vi) Apprenticeship Incentive Grant, (vii) Career Development Services Research (Employment Programs), (viii) Canada--European Union Program for Cooperation in Higher Education, Training and Youth (International Academic Mobility Program), (ix) Canada Summer Jobs (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (x) Career Focus (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (xi) Children and Families (Social Development Partnerships Program), (xii) Contributions for Consultation and Partnership-Building and Canadian-Based Cooperative Activities (International Trade and Labour Program), (xiii) Disability Component (Social Development Partnerships Program), (xiv) Employment Programs--Career Development Services Research, (xv) Enabling Accessibility Fund, (xvi) Enabling Fund for Official Language Minority Communities, (xvii) Federal Public Service Youth Internship Program (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (xviii) Fire Prevention Grants, (xix) Fire Safety Organizations, (xx) Foreign Credential Recognition Program, (xxi) Homelessness Partnering Strategy, (xxii) International Academic Mobility--Canada--European Union Program for Cooperation in Higher Education, Training and Youth, (xxiii) International Academic Mobility--North American Mobility in Higher Education, (xxiv) International Labour Institutions in which Canada Participates Grants (International Trade and Labour Program), (xxv) International Trade and Labour Program (ITLP) Contributions for Consultation and Partnership-Building and Canadian-Based Cooperative Activities, (xxvi) International Trade and Labour Program (ITLP) Grants for Technical Assistance and Foreign-Based Cooperative Activities, (xxvii) International Trade and Labour Program (ITLP) International Labour Institutions in which Canada Participates Grants, (xxviii) Labour-Management Partnership Program, (xxix) Labour Market Agreements, (xxx) Labour Market Agreements for Persons with Disabilities, (xxxi) Labour Market Development Agreements, (xxxii) Labour Mobility, (xxxiii) New Horizons for Seniors Program, (xxxiv) Occupational Health and Safety, (xxxv) Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities, (xxxvi) Organizations that Write Occupational Health and Safety Standards, (xxxvii) Sector Council Program, (xxxviii) Skills and Partnership Fund--Aboriginal, (xxxix) Skills Link (Youth Employment Strategy Program), (xl) Small Project Component (Enabling Accessibility Fund), (xli) Social Development Partnerships Program--Children and Families, (xlii) Social Development Partnerships Program--Disability Component, (xliii) Surplus Federal Real Property for Homelessness Initiative, (xliv) Targeted Initiative for Older Workers, (xv) Technical Assistance and Foreign-Based Cooperative Activities Grants (International Trade and Labour Program), (xlvi) Work-Sharing, (xlvii) Youth Awareness, (xlviii) Youth Employment Strategy--Canada Summer Jobs, (xlix) Youth Employment Strategy--Career Focus, (l) Youth Employment Strategy--Federal Public Service Youth Internship Program, (li) Youth Employment Strategy--Skills Link?

(Return tabled)

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski Conservative Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Mr. Speaker, I ask that the remaining questions be allowed to stand.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

The Speaker

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Committees of the HousePoints of OrderRoutine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I rise today further to the comments of the hon. Chief Government Whip in response to the point of order raised yesterday by the hon. member for Windsor—Tecumseh respecting proceedings in the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics, as well as the comments added by the hon. members for Winnipeg North and Saanich—Gulf Islands.

Mr. Speaker, at the conclusion of his very lengthy submissions, the official opposition House leader asked you to declare proceedings on the ethics committee study in respect to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to be, if I might summarize, null and void. In the alternative, he asked you to direct that the study be suspended for the time being.

From the outset, the core of my arguments will be that the request from the hon. member is premature. It is well established in the House that our committees are “masters of their own proceedings”. Following from that premise is the equally well established principle that the Speaker does not ordinarily intervene in committee proceedings.

The hon. member for Windsor—Tecumseh referred to page 1048 of O'Brien and Bosc which refers to committees as having the freedom to organize their work as they see fit and that these freedoms are not total or absolute. While I would agree that in certain situations the Speaker ought to intervene, the member did not present any argument that would meet that standard in this particular case.

That standard of intervening in the absence of the committee report might be gleaned, for instance, from the decision of Mr. Speaker Parent on November 7, 1996, at page 6225 of Debates. In that decision, a bona fide substitute member had sought to give notice of a motion at a committee meeting but had been ruled out of order because he was not a regular member of the committee. When satisfaction could not be reached at committee, a point of order was raised in the House. The Chair found that there was an evident breach of the Standing Orders in respect of the rights of substitute members.

It might also be worth noting that Mr. Parent's self-styled clarification and “statement” was made when the Standing Orders respecting associate membership in standing committees were only a couple of years old, so it was as much an effort to add clarity to what was then a relatively novel area of the House procedures than it was a decision to set aside a committee's place as the master of its own proceedings.

The bulk of the arguments made in the point of order centred on a letter from the Law Clerk and Parliamentary Counsel, Robert Walsh, to the hon. member for Timmins—James Bay. While that letter delves into the sub judice convention, it largely speaks to questions of law about potential consequences of hypothetical scenarios that are not presently before us.

I would note that page four of Mr. Walsh's letter observes that:

Subject to my comments in response to your 4th point below, if the documents are considered by ETHI at in camera meetings, the sub judice convention would not be offended.

In his arguments, the hon. member for Windsor—Tecumseh premised much of his concern around the notion that the ethics committee would not be successful in keeping its proceedings in camera. I would like to give all hon. members from all parties on the ethics committee more credit than that.

The NDP House leader cited a ruling by Mr. Speaker Fraser on March 26, 1990, which is found at pages 9756-58 of Debates and he quoted from part of it. I would also quote the following passage from that ruling:

If I am cautious in not acting now it is simply because the Chair does not supervise the standing committee chairmen. That function belongs to the members of each committee and they have obvious avenues to pursue other than invoking privilege in the House.

With respect to the facts of this particular case, the ethics committee, acting as master of its own proceedings, has passed a motion seeking production of certain documents from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation further to a study it has commenced in relation to access to information.

I understand that the CBC has complied in part with the committee's motion. Whether the CBC's response is satisfactory to the committee will be a matter for the committee to decide, again, acting as the master of its own proceedings.

Committees of the House possess the power to send for papers and records but they do not have the power to enforce an order for production.

Paragraph 848(2) of the sixth edition of Beauchesne's Parliamentary Rules and Forms tidily articulates the process here:

The procedure for obtaining papers is for the committee to adopt a motion ordering the required person or organization to produce them. If this Order is not complied with, the committee may report the matter to the House, stating its difficulties in obtaining the requested documents. It is then for the House to decide what action is to be taken.

I will revert briefly to my comment a moment ago about the ethics committee's place to decide whether the CBC's production, a voluntary response, I would add, is satisfactory to the committee.

Should the committee decide that the documents do not sufficiently answer the request, it can make a decision to report these facts to the House or it could decide just to move on and drop it. That would be yet another instance of the committee acting as master of its own proceedings.

I do not mention all these incidents of the committee acting as master of its own proceedings just for the sake of being repetitive. It is actually key to the point that I want to make.

Should the situation with respect to the ethics committee's motion for production of documents not be resolved to the committee's satisfaction through the corporation's productions to date, the only way to, for lack of a better word, escalate the matter further is through a report to be tabled to this House. To put it another way: in the absence of a report from the committee, there would effectively be a continuation of the status quo.

A report advising of the refusal to honour an order of the committee, a contempt, in other words, would undoubtedly be accompanied by submissions to you, Mr. Speaker, seeking a finding of a prima facie contempt of Parliament and for permission to move an appropriate motion.

Alternatively, someone opposed to the proceeding might then challenge the committee report and the acceptability of a concurrence motion tabled in the ordinary course.

Therefore, I would submit that the appropriate time to be raising points about the proceedings of the ethics committee and how they may intersect with the sub judice convention would be at that time, that is to say, after any report from the ethics committee is presented.

Accordingly, I would defer making further submissions on behalf of the government respecting the sub judice convention and how it would and would not apply in the circumstances until a report from the ethics committee is presented on the circumstances, if one is even forthcoming.

To reiterate my earlier line of argument, such a report coming forward would be, I suggest, a matter for the ethics committee to decide acting as the master of its own proceedings. Whether a report will or will not be presented is not for me to say. After all, it could be possible, again, for the committee to find itself satisfied with the voluntary disclosures provided by the CBC in response to the motion.

The comments of your immediate predecessor, Mr. Speaker Milliken, in his March 14, 2008, ruling, at page 4181 of Debates, might offer some perspective here:

The hon. Parliamentary Secretary goes on to caution against presuming on the direction that the committee’s study might take and jumping to conclusions about the nature of any report it might present.

I must acknowledge the validity of that argument.

There is one additional thought I would like to add from the 1990 decision of Mr. Speaker Fraser, which both the official opposition House leader and I quoted. The passage I cited earlier made reference to the committee as the most appropriate venue respecting proceedings in committees.

Later in his ruling, Mr. Speaker Fraser added:

I remind hon. members that endless points of privilege on what goes on in committee, when they fall short of that extreme situation where a Speaker might have to intervene, take up a great deal of time in this House.

That point is instructive in that it should put a caution on the NDP House leader's invitation to the Chair to find such an “extreme situation” here.

In the circumstances, for the reasons I have just outlined, this argument is premature because the Chair could have more relevant timing down the road to entertain these issues if and when this matter evolves through a report from the ethics committee.

To borrow from a common cliché, the toothpaste is not out of the tube here yet, Mr. Speaker.

To intervene at this stage would, I suggest, move the so-called line to eliminate what are the extraordinary circumstances when committees may not be masters of their own proceedings and, in turn, possibly lead to a series of other points of order striving to seek greater definition to where that line lies, in future cases, where the majority of a committee disagrees with the studies chosen by the majority for a standing committee's focus.

Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I would conclude by asking that you find the point of order raised by the hon. member for Windsor—Tecumseh is not well taken. Given that the chair of the ethics committee has cancelled meetings on this matter until such time as you give a ruling, I would ask that you come back to the House at your earliest opportunity so that the ethics committee may take up consideration of the documents submitted by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

However, should the Chair wish to make a ruling on the applicability of the sub judice convention in the current circumstances and prior to the House receiving any report from the ethics committee on point, I would ask for you to indulge me or one of my colleagues in the government an opportunity to make further submissions on those aspects.

Committees of the HousePoints of OrderRoutine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

I thank the hon. government House leader for his comments on the issue currently before the Chair.

The House proceeded to the consideration of Bill C-13, An Act to implement certain provisions of the 2011 budget as updated on June 6, 2011 and other measures, as reported (without amendment) from the committee.

Speaker's RulingKeeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

10:15 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

There are four motions in amendment standing on the notice paper for the report stage of Bill C-13. The motions will be grouped for debate as follows: Group No. 1, Motion No. 1; Group No. 2, Motions Nos. 2 to 4.

The voting patterns for the motions within each group are available at the table. The Chair will remind the House of each pattern at the time of voting.

Motions in AmendmentKeeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

10:15 a.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

moved:

That Bill C-13 be amended by deleting Clause 162.

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to address the issue of amendments to Bill C-13.

It must be said that, by proposing an amendment today to eliminate clause 162, we want to hold the government to the promise it made during the last election.

As hon. members know, in the May 2011 election, the government made a number of promises. Then, the Canadian public saw the government break its promises on a number of occasions. Here, on this side of the House, we think it is important for the government to keep the promises it made to the Canadian public. That is why we made this first amendment to Bill C-13.

What does clause 162 contain? As my colleagues know, this provision establishes a Canadian securities transition office. In fact, it ensures that the funding is granted to the securities transition office to begin its operations.

Given that the government promised exactly the opposite during the last election, it is our responsibility as the official opposition to remind the government what it clearly told the public prior to the May 2 election. I would like to quote the promise that the Conservatives made in their election platform—the same platform where they said that they would be moderate, that they would take care of the economy and that they would create jobs. They then broke every one of these promises.

In its election platform, the Conservative Party said the following about the establishment of a Canadian securities transition office: “We will not proceed unless the Supreme Court rules that this matter is within our jurisdiction.”

This was a very clear election promise. The government said that it did not want to proceed and that it would not proceed because it had to wait for the Supreme Court of Canada to rule on this issue.

As the hon. members know, a number of provinces reacted to the government's desire to impose something on the provinces that comes under provincial jurisdiction. And this reaction comes not only from the Quebec nation, but also from the majority of Canadian provinces, which said that this comes under their jurisdiction and that it should go no further.

The Conservative Party, when campaigning to become the federal government, clearly said that it would go no further with this plan. Now what is happening? This brick of a bill, which was drafted after the election, states the opposite: the Conservative government is ready to move forward, no matter how Quebec feels about it, no matter how the majority of Canadian provinces feel about it and no matter what promises it made to the Canadian people. It wants to go ahead. It wants to impose this transition office and it wants taxpayers across the country, from coast to coast, to pay for it.

The government made clear, unambiguous promises, saying that it would not go ahead with the plan. The Canadian people voted: 62% of Canadians said that they did not believe the Conservatives, and a tiny minority, 38% of Canadians, voted for the Conservative Party.

Despite these promises, the Conservative government wants to use this bill to go ahead with the plan. So today we want this clause to be withdrawn.

It is a bit odd that the official opposition, the 102 NDP members, has to force the government to keep its word. Normally, ethically speaking, when a political party runs in an election, it has to keep its word. Since the government very clearly told Canadians that it would not proceed with this, it should show them a little respect and honour the promise that it made, specifically, that it would not proceed with this and that it would allow the Supreme Court to rule on this matter and decide whether this falls under federal jurisdiction. The government did not do that.

It decided to impose this brick of a bill, which contains some things that we support, such as the tax credit for volunteer firefighters. We support certain parts of this bill. We will be talking more about them later today and over the next few days. There are other things that we do not support, such as clause 162, which creates a glaring contradiction between the Conservative Party promises and the reality of the Conservative government, which is not keeping its word. That is why we are proposing that the clause be deleted.

The report stage is an important one. Even the Conservative members would have to agree with me on that. During the last election, they campaigned on that very claim—that they would not go ahead with this. Since they promised not to act on this, why put these clauses in Bill C-13, clauses that go against what they promised in the last election campaign?

When we talk about Bill C-13 and those aspects that go against the Conservative government's promises, it becomes clear that the government was so concerned about ways to break its promises and to play shell games—on so many levels—that serve the Conservative Party, it forgot that its responsibility is the Canadian economy. We can see this in the numbers that have been released over the past few weeks regarding job losses. Canada lost 62,000 full-time jobs in October. That works out to just over 2,000 jobs a day, roughly. Every day in October, the Conservative government lost over 2,000 jobs.

At that rate, it being November 15, we may have lost another 30,000 jobs in the first half of the month alone, but we will not get the figures until the end of the month. We do not know because the figures the Conservatives bring to this House are inaccurate and do not reflect the reality on the street in terms of job losses. Those could have been avoided if this Bill C-13 had done what we proposed. It could have included investments for job creation, to help the middle class and the poorest Canadian families. If this government had taken action, we would not have lost so many jobs in October and we would not be in the process of losing even more in November.

Instead of taking action to create employment, which we still advocate, the government inserted clauses like clause 162 and thereby broke the solemn promises it made to the Canadian public during the last election campaign. For that reason, we want to get rid of clause 162.

Motions in AmendmentKeeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

10:25 a.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague, who is new to the Standing Committee on Finance, for his remarks. I would like to start by saying that everything he just said is not true. He repeated two or three times that, in the Conservative platform, we promised to proceed with the permission and pursuant to the decision of the Supreme Court of Canada. The Supreme Court is currently studying the matter mentioned by my colleague and we are waiting for its decision. The Conservatives continue to keep their promises and protect Canadians. I wonder if the true intent of my colleague and his party is to prevent the problems with the securities system from being resolved.

Why is he not willing to protect Canadians who are negatively affected by the absence of such an office?

Motions in AmendmentKeeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

10:25 a.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague from the Standing Committee on Finance for her question. She hurt my feelings somewhat when she said that we were not telling the truth.

I will have to quote from the Conservative platform. Unfortunately, we often see—I am speaking in general terms and not about the member in particular—that the Conservatives in the House do not do their homework and do not read the bills. It seems that they did not even read their election platform.

To help them out in this debate, I will refer to the Conservative election platform, which states, on page 20 of the English version: “We will not proceed unless the Supreme Court rules that this matter is within our jurisdiction.” In the French version, the quote is found on page 23. The Conservative platform could not be any clearer. What surprises me is that the Conservative candidates did not read their election platform.

Motions in AmendmentKeeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

10:30 a.m.

NDP

Jonathan Tremblay NDP Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague from Burnaby—New Westminster for his eloquent and fact-filled speech. We can continue to talk about fact and fiction. Last week I heard our Prime Minister say on CBC radio that job losses in Canada were a direct result of the economic situation in Europe. I would like to hear what my colleague has to say about that.

Motions in AmendmentKeeping Canada's Economy and Jobs Growing ActGovernment Orders

10:30 a.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague from Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord. He does a very good job in the House, which I admire a lot. He has done a lot of work, even though he has only been in the House for a few months. He does an excellent job. I wanted to make sure that I complimented him.

Canada has seen massive job losses. We cannot deny that. October was a catastrophic month for Canadian families. We lost 62,000 full-time jobs because of this government, which does not even want to take action. The Conservatives are so caught up in talking up Conservative policies that they did not even notice the job losses and the fact that the Canadian public is suffering because of the government's inaction.

We must recognize that we are influenced by global trends. We cannot deny that. However, the reality is that this government and its inaction have created a climate that, in October alone, led to the loss of tens of thousands of jobs across the country.

I must point out that, since May 2008, the Conservative government has created only 200,000 jobs, while the labour force in Canada increased by 450,000 job seekers. This means that we need a quarter of a million jobs just to maintain a stable job market in Canada.