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House of Commons Hansard #9 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was jobs.

Topics

Border Infrastructure FundOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am very happy to correct the record. No such funds were diverted. We used the existing authorities in this fund to provide support under three specific categories.

The Auditor General has raised some legitimate concerns about the transparency and the clarity to the House of Commons in the approving of those estimates, and we have fully accepted her advice.

However, I am very pleased to clarify that not a single dollar was moved that otherwise would have been spent on border infrastructure for this project. So, I know he will be very pleased with that.

Search and RescueOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Foote Liberal Random—Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans wants us to believe that the closure of maritime search and rescue centres in St. John's and Quebec City will not affect lifesaving services.

However, yesterday, Winston Pitcher, the head of the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary in Newfoundland and Labrador, told the Prime Minister that these closures could delay rescues and put public safety at risk.

Where are the government's priorities? It makes massive increases to its own offices while cutting lifesaving rescue centres.

When will the minister admit a mistake has been made and start listening to search and rescue experts?

Search and RescueOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, our government has been clear about finding efficiencies and aligning our resources, but we are absolutely not putting the lives of Canadians at risk. Our top priority will continue to be the safety and security of all Canadians.

Search and RescueOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Scott Simms Liberal Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor, NL

Mr. Speaker, once again, regarding the closure of the search and rescue centre in Newfoundland and Labrador, here is a quote: “A call centre? I am offended because it diminishes my role and the essential work that we do for human safety.” Who said that? It was Merv Wiseman, maritime search and rescue coordinator and a former Conservative candidate.

Here is another quote:

The closure may have saved the Liberal government a few dollars, but Newfoundland and Labrador have had to suffer the consequences.

Who said that? The Prime Minister.

Will the regional minister for Newfoundland and Labrador, that is right, the member of Parliament for Labrador, rise in this House, finally, and condemn these cuts?

Search and RescueOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, that is from a fine source, the former Liberal government that decimated the Canadian Coast Guard through its neglect.

Since 2006, our government has made unprecedented investments in the protection of Canadians to the tune of $1.4 billion invested in fleet renewal. In Newfoundland and Labrador, there has been a 33% increase in Canadian Coast Guard positions since we came to office. We have also relocated two of Canada's heaviest and most capable icebreakers, the Terry Fox and the Louis S. St-Laurent.

VeteransOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Joyce Murray Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, 93-year old retired Major Gordon MacLean Logan, who was wounded six times during World War II, dedicated his life to serving Canadians.

For the past three years, he has had to pull teeth to speak to his Veterans Affairs case worker, thanks to a lack of resources. Is this how the Conservative government honours our veterans?

While Mr. Logan's health is failing, government advertising has exploded by 215%.

Can the minister please explain to Mr. Logan and his family how partisan overspending is helping him live with dignity?

VeteransOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Lévis—Bellechasse Québec

Conservative

Steven Blaney ConservativeMinister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the member has raised an important issue.

We on this side of the House, and I hope on all sides of the House, care for the well-being of all of our veterans. This is why we have invested and keep investing in the health of our veterans, whether it be their mental or physical health.

We will keep on investing and will take care of all of our veterans here, today and tomorrow.

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, for months the government has been dragging its feet on the issue of foreign investment. In the meantime, the list of foreign companies that are reneging on their commitments through layoffs continues to grow: Vale Inco, Stelco and now Custom House in Victoria. We need new regulations governing foreign investment to determine whether takeovers are truly in the public interest and to determine what guarantees are required.

Will the minister develop these new regulations before—yes, before—deciding who the Toronto Stock Exchange will be sold to?

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, we have been clear on this side of the House. We want to promote increased competition. Studying foreign investments is essential. We want to give consumers more choice. The hon. member is trying to mix different issues and muddy the waters. One thing is clear: we will continue to move forward with our policies in order to safeguard the economy and ensure that the economic recovery takes solid hold once and for all.

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian NDP Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, that is not an answer. The truth is that only two out of 13,500 takeovers have been blocked since Investment Canada was created. The takeovers of Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan and MacDonald Dettwiler were only stopped after the NDP held the government to account for its lack of transparency. We did the heavy lifting.

Now the minister has moved the deadline of the TMX takeover review into the summer when Parliament is not in session.

Will the government commit to acting now to establish a transparent public review of the Toronto Stock Exchange takeover bid?

Foreign InvestmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, foreign investment is key to the growth of the Canadian economy and our government will continue to encourage it.

We believe in a strong economy. That being said, significant investments will continue to be reviewable under the Investment Canada Act, and always as a net benefit for Canada.

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Dany Morin NDP Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, the latest statistics show an increase of 18% in hate crimes against the gay and lesbian community. While most other hate crimes are committed mainly against property, over half of those committed against gays and lesbians involve violence. This is unacceptable.

What measures does the government intend to take to combat the increase in hate crimes against gays and lesbians?

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, our government's track record is clear. We believe strongly in protecting the rights of all Canadians regardless of their background, regardless of their roots. That continues to be the position of our government.

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, sadly and unjustly, transgender Canadians are still not protected against hate crimes nor are they protected against discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Code.

In its last session, this House passed legislation to provide those protections, legislation that was supported by the Minister of Justice.

This is a question of equality for Canadians who are our brothers and sisters, our daughters, our sons, our neighbours and our friends. Will this government act now to protect the rights and safety of transgender Canadians?

JusticeOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, as I already indicated to this House, the commitment of this government to the equality of all Canadians remains as firm as it has always been. That continues to be our position and will be in the future.

SyriaOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Kevin Sorenson Conservative Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is impossible to ignore the current unrest in Syria and the plight of its people.

As we speak, innocent civilians who have been protesting peacefully are being arbitrarily arrested, tortured and in some cases even killed by the Assad regime.

Would the Minister of Foreign Affairs please update the House on the Conservative government's latest steps to further support the Syrian people?

SyriaOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to note that today I have asked our Canadian delegation to the United Nations Human Rights Council to introduce and seek the support of like-minded nations to condemn the actions of the Assad regime in Syria as a gross violation of human rights.

The Government of Canada, and I believe all parties in this place, calls on the Syrian regime to immediately end the killing, the arbitrary arrests, the torture and other acts of violence against its people. We also call on the Assad regime to stop trying to divert domestic and international attention from its brutal crackdown on peaceful, democratic demonstrations.

The situation in Syria is completely unacceptable, and Canada will continue to show its support for people seeking freedom in Syria.

TransportationOral Questions

June 15th, 2011 / 2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jamie Nicholls NDP Vaudreuil—Soulanges, QC

Mr. Speaker, the partial closure of the Mercier Bridge announced yesterday is yet another blow to the people of the south shore. Wait times will be interminable. During the 2008 election, Montreal was promised bridges. In 2011, more promises were made. What has been done? Nothing. Where is the plan? When will the bridge be repaired?

TransportationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member likely knows, ownership of this bridge is shared 50-50 between the Government of Quebec and the federal government. Since our government took office in 2006, we have invested $135 million in repairing the federal government's share of the Mercier Bridge and in continuing the work. As with all bridges in Montreal, we will continue to ensure that the Mercier Bridge is safe, and all options are on the table to keep the area safe.

TransportationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Hélène LeBlanc NDP LaSalle—Émard, QC

Mr. Speaker, the summer is going to be very hot, and major traffic jams are expected to affect the entire greater metropolitan area. The minister has made vague promises about a long-term infrastructure plan. The government's inaction over the past six years has led us to the crisis we are experiencing today.

When will the federal government understand that Montreal's entire economy is at stake?

TransportationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has just answered her own question. If there are traffic jams, it is because there is work being done. If work is being done, it is because we have carried out 28,000 projects across the country under the Prime Minister's economic action plan.

EmploymentOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Kennedy Stewart NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, young Canadians are facing a tough summer.

The unemployment rate for young Canadians stands at 15%, and it has been getting worse. That is double the general rate. This means that university students will be forced to take out more loans and new grads will not find that critical first job.

The government's approach to youth employment has clearly failed. Where is the minister's plan to help young Canadians find work?

EmploymentOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we do want to help students get prepared, not just for summer jobs but also for their careers in the long term.

That is why I was very pleased to announce last week the launch of Canada's summer jobs program for this summer with an additional $10 million in permanent funding. That is an additional 3,500 jobs for students each and every year going forward.

These funds will help them get the jobs they need to get experience, and also help pay for their studies going forward so they will not have to go as far into debt.

EmploymentOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Guy Caron NDP Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government obviously does not understand the extent of the problem of the lack of jobs for the youth of this country. With an unemployment rate of 15% for youth between the ages of 20 and 25, all those who need summer jobs to pay for their education are worried. Not only do our young people go into a great deal of debt to attend school, but, increasingly, they are finding only insecure and poorly paid jobs.

What does this government intend to do to reduce youth unemployment?

EmploymentOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, as I just said, we want to help these young people, these students, acquire experience and skills, not just during the summer but also as part of a long-term career. That is why we have just announced a very large amount of money that will result in the creation of 3,600 additional student jobs this summer in order to help young people obtain experience and earn money to continue their post-secondary education.