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House of Commons Hansard #67 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was infrastructure.

Topics

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, only 20% of judicial appointees are women. This problem will not be fixed until there is more diversity on the advisory committees. The troubling truth is that two provinces, British Columbia and Saskatchewan, do not have any women on federal judiciary advisory committees.

Canadians expect their judiciary to be diverse and reflect Canada. More women than ever are pursuing careers in law. Why will the Conservative government not make gender equality a priority?

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, this government has an excellent record with respect to judicial appointments.

Those individuals who sit on judicial advisory committees give of their time and their talent. A number of them are appointed by the federal government, but they are also by the provincial governments, the Bar Association, the law societies and representatives of the judiciaries. They do an excellent job and they should be thanked by the hon. member and her party.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, when Attawapiskat cried out for help, Canadians responded. Individuals, schools and churches across the country raised funds. The Red Cross arrived quickly to deliver aid that kept families from freezing. We give them our thanks.

Compare this empathy with the bumbling and confrontational response of the Conservatives, which has been condemned in the international media as an attempt to intimidate a desperately poor first nation community.

When the minister meets with Theresa Spence, will he agree to stop punishing the community, kick out the third party Indian agents and help this community get back on its feet for Christmas?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Kenora Ontario

Conservative

Greg Rickford ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, our government's priority remains to be the health and safety of the residents of Attawapiskat. The third party manager is already in place and is getting results for this community as we speak. He will ensure that the programs and social services continue to be delivered.

We are looking forward to our meeting with the chief to discuss next steps. We are acting in good faith, in full transparency and we urge the chief and council to be part of that solution.

Status of WomenOral Questions

December 14th, 2011 / 2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett Liberal St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, despite the erroneous statements of the Minister for Status of Women yesterday, it is very clear that the United Nations has decided to send experts to Canada to investigate the shocking numbers of missing and murdered aboriginal women.

The Liberals asked for a Canadian inquiry three years ago. The government refused. Will the Conservative government stop embarrassing Canada on the world stage and at least today agree to co-operate fully with the United Nations inquiry?

Status of WomenOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Edmonton—Spruce Grove Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeMinister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, as I indicated yesterday, if there is a discussion or inquiry, I can reassure the member the United Nations will let us know as well as the province of British Columbia.

As I said, violence against aboriginal women is rooted in very deep causes, like discrimination, racism and poverty, which is why we launched the strategy to address the issue of murdered and missing aboriginal women. It addresses not only investigating these crimes very seriously but also raising the cultural sensitivities around this with community programming.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, “An act of sabotage on our future, reckless and totally irresponsible”. This is just some of the reaction to this government's decision to abandon Kyoto.

In 2006 the government inherited project green, which experts said would meet 80% of our Kyoto targets. Instead of embracing the plan, the climate change denying Conservatives scrapped it and cut targets by 90%.

Why is the government so proud to shame our international reputation instead of fighting for our future?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I welcome every opportunity to compare the record in protecting the environment by this government with the previous Liberal government. I would like to read a quote for my hon. colleague:

When it comes to protecting the environment, bold announcements are made and then often forgotten as soon as the confetti hits the ground. The federal government [the Liberal government] seems to have trouble crossing the finish line.

Who said that? No, it was not the member for Kings--Hants; it was the Environment Commissioner in 2005.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Joyce Murray Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, Canada's withdrawal from the Kyoto protocol by this government is of historical importance and represents an international breach of trust. The message sent by this decision to the world is embarrassing. Being part of the solution would have significant economic benefits.

Why is the government tarnishing our international reputation by pursuing an outdated ideology that will cost jobs and be harmful to our economy?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, it is pointless to look back.

It is very clear that Kyoto is in the past. Canada is now working with other countries around the world to create a successor agreement to Kyoto which will effectively engage all major emitters in both the developed and the developing world, and actually make a real, absolute reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Fin Donnelly NDP New Westminster—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, DFO scientists on the chopping block say the minister's reckless cuts put fish stocks in further jeopardy, but they are afraid to go public. They saw what happened to their Environment Canada colleagues who spoke out against these Conservatives.

Is strong-arming scientists part of the strategic review that the minister talked about yesterday? Why is the minister bullying DFO employees? Does he not understand it is their job to protect Canada's fish stocks?

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Conservative

Keith Ashfield ConservativeMinister of Fisheries and Oceans and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway

Mr. Speaker, do I look like a bully? There has been no muzzling of our scientists. There certainly has been no attempt to muzzle our scientists. That is totally fictitious.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Ryan Cleary NDP St. John's South—Mount Pearl, NL

Mr. Speaker, the answer to the minister's question is, “Yes sir, your department and you, sir, are a bully”.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Flaherty Conservative Whitby—Oshawa, ON

He looks like a bully. Kick him out.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order, please. We have to spend two more days together with each other, so I would ask for a little order.

I heard something that was unparliamentary. I will ask the hon. member to rephrase his question, or withdraw, from what I heard.

The hon. member for St. John's South--Mount Pearl.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Ryan Cleary NDP St. John's South—Mount Pearl, NL

Mr. Speaker, I cannot apologize, I simply answered the--

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Order, order. The hon. member for Nanaimo--Cowichan.

Service CanadaOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, more and more Canadians are looking for work and that means Canadians need more help getting unemployment support, not less. However, at a time when Canadians need it most the government keeps slashing Service Canada, closing down entire offices, like the one in Sturgeon Falls that serves more than 10,000 people, and replacing live agents with automated machines. Need help for the holidays? Press 1 and hold.

Why is the government making it so hard for struggling families to get the help they need before the holidays?

Service CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, every year at this time there is a dramatic rise in the number of people who get laid off and our hearts go out to them.

We are trying to get their benefits to them, the ones to which they are entitled, just as quickly as possible. That is why we are putting additional resources on at this time of year, as we usually do, to help those people get the benefits to which they are entitled.

In the meantime, we are also working overtime to upgrade and modernize our totally outdated paper-based EI system.

Service CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Anne-Marie Day NDP Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, in November, tens of thousands of people were added to the already too-long list of the unemployed in Canada. With Christmas approaching these families find themselves without any income and unable to find out if and when they will receive employment insurance benefits.

This heartless government is cutting the number of employees who handle claims at Service Canada.

When will the Conservatives stop turning their backs on families? Can they tell us what they intend to do to ensure that all Canadians have something to eat at Christmas?

Service CanadaOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, every year in December the ranks of the unemployed swell. That is why every year we add resources to process employment insurance claims. We are continuing this tradition this year by adding additional resources. We are also modernizing the system, which is currently paper-based, in order to make it more modern, efficient and responsive.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Mike Allen Conservative Tobique—Mactaquac, NB

Mr. Speaker, consular officials all over the world provide important help for Canadians who find themselves in distress, including the case of Mr. Henk Tepper, a farmer from my riding, being held in Beirut, Lebanon. These consular cases are very challenging for everyone involved and must be about individuals and families, and should not be about petty politics.

I attended a vigil Sunday evening in Grand Falls in support of the family and would like to ask the minister of state responsible for consular affairs to please inform the House about Mr. Tepper's case.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Nose Hill Alberta

Conservative

Diane Ablonczy ConservativeMinister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs)

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his ongoing and caring engagement on this matter. Our government is very concerned about Mr. Tepper's case, and we know what a stressful time this has been for him and his family.

The Lebanese government specifically dismisses the allegation that a simple letter would release Mr. Tepper and affirms that it must act in accordance with Lebanon's international obligations when faced with a request for extradition.

Government officials and ministers have been in active contact with senior Lebanese officials and—