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House of Commons Hansard #57 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was yea.

Topics

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, Attawapiskat is ground zero of a national catastrophe, and after a month of inaction when the Red Cross has had to step in, when emergency measures have had to step in, the Conservatives' solution is to blame the community. If they wanted to know what was happening in the community, they could have called their co-manager who is on the ground right now and with whom I spoke yesterday.

When the Red River floods, people show up. When Slave Lake burned, politicians showed up. Why are the people of Attawapiskat treated so differently? Why is it that when it is a first nation community in distress, the government's response is contempt?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Vancouver Island North B.C.

Conservative

John Duncan ConservativeMinister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, our priority is ensuring that people in immediate need get adequate shelter as quickly as possible. We are also looking at ways to ensure this situation does not happen again.

We agree that we cannot have band-aid solutions. There are larger structural issues that need to be addressed. We will provide short and longer-term ways to address these concerns.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the government that should be placed under third party management is right across the way. It is right over there. That is what should be under third party management.

It is a classic case. There are dozens of Attawapiskats right across the country. It is not the only community that is facing these conditions and these difficulties. In her last report, the Auditor General of Canada said that the aboriginal people of our country were living in intolerable conditions.

It is the government that has to take responsibility for what has happened and not simply continue to blame the victims. The government is all hat and no cattle when it comes to—

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The right hon. Prime Minister.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as I have said repeatedly, this government has made large scale investments into this community, unlike the party opposite when it was in government. This government is determined and is prepared to take the steps necessary to ensure results with those funds.

By the way, that is why the people of Canada placed the Liberal Party under third party management.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, we can see how seriously the Prime Minister takes this problem. He is still doing the same thing he did yesterday: investments in health and education are included in the $90 million he is still talking about today. The Auditor General clearly said that the federal government is responsible for the problems with living conditions in Attawapiskat and in all the other communities struggling with the same problems. It must take responsibility.

When will the government take responsibility and resolve these problems?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, it is unbelievable to hear the Liberal Party criticize this government for investing in education, health and housing in this community. Those are our responsibilities. Education is the most important thing for the future of people in that community, and we will continue to make such investments.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, one of the government's first decisions was to cancel a $5 billion agreement that was negotiated for over a year between the provinces and the federal government, known as the Kelowna accord. It was booked in the financial details of the company—

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order, please. The hon. member for Toronto-Centre has the floor.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Rae Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, so much for decorum. We know where decorum normally lies in the House. Those guys are prepared to heckle, intimidate, clap and stop others from talking. That is the way they manage.

That is why if there is a trusteeship to be established, it should be a trusteeship on the government. It is the one that failed to take responsibility. It is the one that is failing to take charge. That is where the problem lies.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal Party's idea of acting when it was in government, after 13 years, was putting out a press release without a plan. That is what we got from the Liberal Party.

This government has put $90 million into this community. On behalf of all Canadians and the ordinary members of that first nation, this government is prepared to do what the others were not prepared to do, and that is to ensure there is good management in these communities.

Harmonized Sales TaxOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, B.C. families did not want the Conservative-Liberal harmonized sales tax three years ago, but the Conservative government refused to listen. We rejected the unfair tax again in referendum last summer. The government wants to make B.C. families pay billions in penalties. The government continues to stall and refuses to implement the removal of the HST.

Will the Conservatives finally take responsibility for their role and negotiate a fair deal for British Columbians? Why do they continue to ask B.C. families to pick up the tab for this absolute, utter, complete Conservative-Liberal HST fiasco?

Harmonized Sales TaxOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeMinister of State (Finance)

Mr. Speaker, we actually respect provincial jurisdiction. Harmonization of the sales tax is provincial jurisdiction. British Columbia chose not to continue with that, but the B.C. government acknowledged the that harmonization agreement stipulated that transitional assistance must be recovered should the province wish to exit the program.

Harmonized Sales TaxOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, the sound we are hearing is the Conservatives desperately trying to blame somebody. They have nobody to blame but themselves.

The government has already collected two years of HST revenue from B.C. families. The unfair Conservative tax has already cost B.C. families hundreds upon hundreds of dollars a year. The Conservative government seems to want to make British Columbians pay and pay and pay.

When will the government agree to give families a break and stop making them pay for the Conservative-Liberal HST fiasco? When will it fix the B.C. HST error?

Harmonized Sales TaxOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Macleod Alberta

Conservative

Ted Menzies ConservativeMinister of State (Finance)

Mr. Speaker, the only HST error comes from the members of the NDP. They are uncertain whether they are for it or against it. For example, in British Columbia I understand now they are against it. In Quebec they are for the HST. In Nova Scotia they actually supported an increase in the HST.

Those members cannot have it both ways. Either they want to reduce taxes for Canadians and make taxes fairer or they do not. I am assuming they do not.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, once upon a time, there was a CBC reporter, now the Minister of the Environment, who warned us that greenhouse gases were, and I quote, the “most important of all the environmental questions”. How times have changed.

At the time, he said that future generations would have to worry about the threat posed by greenhouse gases and, well, here we are.

What is the minister waiting for to come up with a real plan, instead of pulling Canada out of Kyoto?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, let me assure my colleague that Canada will participate in the Durban conference in the same good faith we have demonstrated at pre-COP meetings all through this year.

Canada is working toward a new single international climate change agreement that would include all major emitters. The Cancun agreements, based on the Copenhagen accord, provide a solid foundation for such a regime. In Durban we will work to implement this agreement.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, I do not have a lot of faith in that good faith because it is Conservative inaction that has made us a climate change laggard and denied Canadians jobs in the new energy economy.

I do not blame the Conservatives for wanting to pull out. Kyoto's independent emissions audits have exposed six years of failure by the government, six years of failed environmental policies and six years of failed federal leadership.

The government's climate inaction kills Canadian jobs. When will it stop blaming the Liberals for the failure of Kyoto? When will it actually introduce a plan for a transition to a new energy economy?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for reminding the House that the Kyoto agreement was one of the biggest blunders the previous Liberal government made.

Canada will not take on a new target under the Kyoto protocol, but we will not obstruct those who wish to cling to it. The protocol is neither effective nor fair and it is does include commitments by all major emitters.

We do remain committed to the Copenhagen accord, which the Prime Minister signed. We are working toward reaching our 2020 reduction targets.

JusticeOral Questions

November 30th, 2011 / 2:35 p.m.

NDP

Jack Harris NDP St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the government admitted that its prison agenda bill was flawed. The Minister of Public Safety tried to introduce 11th hour amendments to Bill C-10 only to be ruled out of order by the Speaker. It seems that the mountain of opposition from experts, crown prosecutors, the provinces and the public has struck a nerve.

Now that the government has admitted its bill is flawed, will it finally work with others to make improvements, or will it continue to insist on ramming the bill through Parliament?

JusticeOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, we will make no such admission. The bill is very targeted. It goes after drug dealers and child molesters.

We consulted with the people of Canada. Millions of Canadians heard what we had to say. They gave us their support, and we are very grateful for that.

JusticeOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Françoise Boivin NDP Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, talking to the Conservatives about Bill C-10 is like talking to a brick wall.

Yesterday in the House, the government finally admitted that its crime bill, Bill C-10, is seriously flawed. Experts agree. Police chiefs agree. The provinces agree. This bill is bad and unbalanced and will cost the provinces a fortune. After months of ignoring everyone, the government finally seems to understand that it made a mistake.

Will the government send the bill back to committee so we can make the necessary changes, or will it continue down the wrong path, to the detriment of the provinces and Canadian families?

JusticeOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe New Brunswick

Conservative

Robert Goguen ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, the vast majority of Canadians and Quebeckers—except for those across the floor—understand the important objective of Bill C-10, that is, protecting Canadians from violent criminals.

Furthermore, an eminent Quebecker, former minister Marc Bellemare, recently said, “Minister Fournier did not speak for all Quebeckers in Ottawa. I think this bill is in line with Quebec's values.”

It is time for the opposition to stop deceiving Canadians and Quebeckers.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, service at EI call centres is the worst it has been in six years and yet the minister still will not admit she has a problem. She has the gall to blame staff for service slowdowns. That is outrageous. That minister cut 1,000 processing agent jobs. That is why call centres cannot keep up and jobless Canadians cannot reach anyone when they need help.

When will the minister stop her work to rule, admit she has a problem and fix Service Canada call centres?