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House of Commons Hansard #129 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was workers.

Topics

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Oxford Ontario

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the one thing we know for sure is that there is a cost to victims. The members on the other side have always ignored that fact. The minister and others have appeared. As this evolves, the opposite side should be well aware that this side stands on the side of victims.

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, then why did they make cuts to victim support programs? It is a matter of choice. The Conservatives would rather build megaprisons than improve support for family caregivers. The Conservatives would rather hire prison guards than give small businesses real tax support, even though small businesses provide over half of all jobs to Canadians.

Those are the Conservatives' choices, but will there be anything left to help family caregivers or support our small businesses?

Public SafetyOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Oxford Ontario

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, as the House leader mentioned earlier this morning, we want to help victims. The Bloc members have agreed with us. People who have taken money from seniors across the country and have been sentenced to prison will be released after serving one-sixth of their time. I wish the opposite side would look at that cost and work with us.

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Liberal Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Public Safety once sniffed that “the evidence is overwhelming that politics plays a significant consideration in judicial appointments”. He must have been talking about his own Conservative Party.

One week, Brian Abrams is a Conservative candidate getting ready for the next federal election. He steps down and just weeks later he is appointed as a judge.

The integrity of the appointment system is in question here. Will the government commit to an independent review of just what happened?

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Mississauga—Erindale Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, our government is guided by the principles, merits and legal experience in the selection and appointment of judges to Canada's superior and federal courts and will remain vigilant in seeking linguistic competence in both official languages.

The government will continue to select and recommend for appointment women and men of undisputed merit and legal excellence with input from a broad range of stakeholders.

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Liberal Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, there were others. Lawrence O'Neil, a former Conservative MP, was made a judge in Nova Scotia. Chris Bondy, who has given thousands to the Conservative Party, was made a judge in Windsor. In all, 39 Conservative insiders have been appointed to federal courts since the last election.

Could the government confirm that each and every one of these appointments were endorsed by the judicial advisory committee?

Government AppointmentsOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Mississauga—Erindale Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, as the member will know, all judges are appointed with recommendations of the 17 judicial advisory committees across the country. Our government will continue to appoint men and women of undisputed merit and expertise.

Since coming to power, the government has made over 350 judicial appointments. We have move expeditiously to fill all vacancies in the courts with qualified and respected candidates.

Conservative Party of CanadaOral Questions

11:30 a.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Bloc Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday on the show Enquête some disturbing issues were raised. We learned that Faytene Kryskow, the representative of MY Canada, a powerful evangelical group that lobbies members of the Conservative government, has received privileged access to Parliament thanks to an exclusive security card, a sort of VIP pass.

Can the government explain how many of these cards exist, what criteria need to be met before such a card is issued and how Ms. Kryskow managed to get one?

Conservative Party of CanadaOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I understand this group, MY Canada, had a reception on the Hill, and there were a few Bloc Québécois members at it.

Conservative Party of CanadaOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Bloc Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, the piece on Enquête identified a number of MPs, including the member for Winnipeg South and the member for Kildonan—St. Paul, who are members of the religious group MY Canada.

Does the government not find it disturbing that so many fundamentalists gravitate to the Conservative Party to stack the government and impose their religious values?

Conservative Party of CanadaOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, this government meets with literally thousands of people every year to hear their ideas and suggestions on how we can build a better and stronger Canada.

Just in the last few months, I have had the great privilege to meet with Jewish groups, Sikh groups, Muslim groups, Hindu groups and, I want to say something remarkable, I have even met with a few Christian groups.

Natural ResourcesOral Questions

February 11th, 2011 / 11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Diane Bourgeois Bloc Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is meeting the Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador today to discuss the underwater cable project. We know that Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island are trying to get funding from the Conservative government for electrical transmission lines to get around Quebec and send electricity from Labrador to the United States.

Since Quebec developed its electricity network without federal assistance, will the Prime Minister tell Newfoundland and Labrador in no uncertain terms that Quebeckers' taxes paid to Ottawa will not be used to fund this project?

Natural ResourcesOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Cypress Hills—Grasslands Saskatchewan

Conservative

David Anderson ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources and for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, our government has created the Public Private Partnerships Canada to ensure Canada's infrastructure needs can be met in the future.

As the member knows full well, a crown corporation operates at arm's-length from the federal government. It reviews all applications on a merit basis. That is what we have to say about that.

TransportOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Bloc

Luc Desnoyers Bloc Rivière-des-Mille-Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, Air Canada executives have announced their intention to transform Toronto into a gateway to North America. Meanwhile, no major expansion is planned for Montreal in 2011 and Aveos may move some of its maintenance operations to El Salvador.

Is the government going to ensure that Air Canada respects the spirit of its incorporating legislation in order to prevent the company from ceasing its activity in Montreal?

TransportOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Fort McMurray—Athabasca Alberta

Conservative

Brian Jean ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, Air Canada continues to man operational and overall centres in Winnipeg, Montreal and Mississauga.

The application by Air Canada before the Canadian Industrial Relations Board is a private matter between the airline and its labour union. We understand from Air Canada officials that there will be absolutely no job losses if the application is approved.

I appreciate working with the Bloc members on this particular issue, and if they have more questions I would be happy to answer them.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development must apologize to the Métis people of Canada for failing to consult with them on a government effort to standardize Métis registration.

It is an insult that the government signed a sole-source contract with the Canadian Standards Council to help determine Métis registration without consultation and without assessing the registration data and processes of the Métis themselves.

How can the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development explain this grave insult to the Métis of Canada on a matter so integral to their collective future?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Kenora Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, the member should check her facts.

The minister has indicated that he will not be reviewing the CSC contract. The contract is not to decide who is Métis but to give the government a way to ensure the registration system in the five Métis provinces are satisfactory and respond to the Powley Supreme Court decision. This approach will be developed in collaboration with Métis organizations and provincial governments.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

11:35 a.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, Sisters in Spirit is a groundbreaking program that has brought together the families of 600 missing and murdered aboriginal women across the country, all victims of crime.

Despite the importance of Sisters in Spirit and the quality and depth of its research, the Conservatives cancelled its funding. Now the government is advising that an unelected senator is the government's spokesperson on this file, not the part-time minister for the Status of Women.

How many more women need to die before this matter becomes a priority for the government?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Mississauga—Erindale Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, the government is committed to ensuring that all women in Canada, including aboriginal women, are safe and secure, regardless of the community in which they live.

This is a pressing concern that cuts across many different sectors, including the justice system, public safety and policing, gender issues, women's rights and aboriginal affairs.

The Minister for Status of Women recently announcement that the Government of Canada would invest $10 million over two years to improve community safety and to ensure that the justice system and law enforcement agencies can better respond to the cases of missing and murdered aboriginal women.

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Liberal Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, I believe all members here to be reasonable people. In your words, then, of yesterday, we must all be “extremely concerned, if not shocked, and might well begin to doubt the integrity of certain decision-making processes” of the government.

We know experts at CIDA were over-ridden with the stroke of a pen, cutting funding to 23 well-established projects supported by the Canadian church body, KAIROS.

We know why this decision was, political, but will the minister come clean and tell us the what, where, when and how of the decision to cut this funding?

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Newmarket—Aurora Ontario

Conservative

Lois Brown ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, the minister has been quite clear on this matter. The project put forward by KAIROS did not meet the government's priorities.

Unfortunately, we cannot fund every project that comes along. We continue to work with the KAIROS partner organizations, like the United Church of Canada, the Lutheran World Relief and the Mennonite Central Committee, to name but a few.

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Liberal Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, the parliamentary secretary obviously did not see the Globe and Mail this morning.

Reasonable people want a reasonable answer. We know officials from CIDA gave KAIROS the green light. It met all the stated criteria for funding. It is effective and efficient at delivering international aid.

I will reiterate. We know why this cut was made. KAIROS is committed to the things the government cannot abide. Its ministers have confirmed that.

What exactly can it not abide: equality of women, economic development, clean water, democracy building, human rights or peace? Could the government tell us?

International Co-operationOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Newmarket—Aurora Ontario

Conservative

Lois Brown ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, indeed I did see the Globe and Mail this morning.

This government is working to ensure our aid is efficient, effective and focused. We want to ensure our assistance is getting into the hands of real people.

Our new aid effectiveness agenda is focusing assistance on food security, children and youth, and sustainable economic growth. We want to ensure our assistance is getting into the hands of those who need it the most.

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Conservative

Blaine Calkins Conservative Wetaskiwin, AB

Mr. Speaker, our government is firmly committed to defending the legitimate economic activities of Canadians. The fact remains that the Canadian seal hunt is humane, sustainable and properly regulated.

Could the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans inform the House on the latest steps taken to protect the traditional livelihoods of our Canadian sealers?

Sealing IndustryOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Egmont P.E.I.

Conservative

Gail Shea ConservativeMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, we believe the EU ban on Canadian seal products is inconsistent with the EU's international trade obligations. That is why today our government formally requested a WTO dispute settlement panel.

Our Conservative government is firmly committed to protecting traditional markets and to opening new markets for Canadian seal products. We will continue to defend Canada's sealing industry and the coastal and northern communities that depend on the seal hunt.