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House of Commons Hansard #81 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was guns.

Topics

Air CanadaOral questions

2:50 p.m.

Halton Ontario

Conservative

Lisa Raitt ConservativeMinister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, our government is focused on jobs and growth, and so we are concerned that labour disruptions represent a threat to the Canadian economy.

I am pleased to inform the House today that I have received agreement from both Air Canada, the employer, and the union that they will submit to the extended mediation process.

I want to thank the parties for their commitment to the bargaining process. They have an area for free collective bargaining, which our government believes in. I am very grateful for the work they are going to put in, and we expect them to get a deal.

The EnvironmentOral questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow is the seventh anniversary of the coming into force of the Kyoto protocol. One hundred and ninety-one countries signed and ratified the Kyoto protocol on climate change. Only one government has broken its word: this government. The Minister of the Environment exaggerated the penalties in order to justify withdrawing from the protocol, but he still has no plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

If he truly believes the science, when will the minister table a science-based plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions?

The EnvironmentOral questions

2:50 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, everyone knows that the Kyoto protocol is not working. Canada is standing tall.

We announced that we would legally withdraw from the protocol under article 27 and spare Canadians spending billions of wasted tax dollars in compliance fees visited on this country by the previous Liberal government.

We are working for a post-Kyoto climate change regime that would include all major emitters.

The EnvironmentOral questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Megan Leslie NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, even the Prime Minister's new BFF is shocked by his disregard for Canada's international commitments.

No, not Er Shun or Ji Li, but China, who was joined by India, Brazil and South Africa in condemning the Conservative withdrawal from the Kyoto protocol. They said that they seriously questioned the government's credibility and sincerity on climate change and slammed Canada for casually setting aside our existing legal commitments.

Why will the government not stop working against Canada's national interest and start defending our reputation?

The EnvironmentOral questions

2:50 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, as I just said, the entire world, or most of the world, recognized that the Kyoto protocol was not working, and a post-Kyoto climate change agreement needs to be created.

Canada is working with other countries. We began with the Durban platform in December and we will work through this year to create a new climate change regime that includes all major emitters, including China, India and Brazil.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Rathika Sitsabaiesan NDP Scarborough—Rouge River, ON

Mr. Speaker, clearly, from any ministry we ask questions of, we do not get a straight answer, so let me try another one.

Across the country, especially in cities like Toronto, the government is making families wait longer and longer before being reunited. Parents and grandparents wait an average of seven years to come to Canada. One family in my riding has waited over 16 years. Instead of solving the problem, the minister has placed a moratorium on new applications.

Why are Conservatives making these Canadian citizens wait so long to be united with their loved ones?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, that is a good question that the hon. member should ask of the Liberals. I think there are two former immigration ministers over there who left us with a 110,000 person backlog for parental reunification.

We are finally cleaning up the mess the Liberals left to us. That is why, for example, this year we are increasing by some 60% the number of parents and grandparents who will be admitted to Canada. We are doing the same thing next year, and we brought in the super visa to allow ten-year, multiple entry visas to facilitate long-term visits by loved ones with their relatives here in Canada.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Rathika Sitsabaiesan NDP Scarborough—Rouge River, ON

Mr. Speaker, the super visas are not known by many people, and not many people are being accepted under them.

Toronto is one of the most ethno-culturally diverse cities in the world. Strong families are a cornerstone of our city and a key Canadian value. That is what family reunification is all about.

Even for spouses and children it can take up to three years, a far cry from the immediate processing they were promised.

When will Conservatives stop failing Canadians and put families first?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, of course family reunification is an important part of Canada's immigration program. That is why our government has actually increased the number of sponsored family members, parents, grandparents, spouses and kids, admitted to this country since--

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Jim Karygiannis Liberal Scarborough—Agincourt, ON

Moratorium.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The member for Scarborough—Agincourt has to let the minister respond to the question.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Jason Kenney Conservative Calgary Southeast, AB

I know the member is a bit sore and defensive about this, Mr. Speaker, because after all, the Liberals left behind a huge mess, nearly a million people waiting with their immigration files, including over 110,000 parents and grandparents.

We are cleaning up the problem. In fact, this year and next we are going from the average Liberal admission of parents and grandparents of 17,000 a year to 25,000 a year. That represents a 60% increase and faster reunification for family members.

PensionsOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, Pinocchio certainly lives in this House on that side.

Last Christmas the Conservatives refused to protect disability benefits for sick and dying Nortel workers. Today, they want to dip their hands into seniors' pockets.

The Prime Minister forgets the OAS is the only income many seniors, particularly women and the disabled, will have after they are no longer able to work.

In the interests of compassion, will the minister put down her lines just this once? If they can find billions of dollars for Cadillac jets and American-style jails, can they not find a couple of bucks, just a few, to keep sick and low income--

PensionsOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. Minister of Human Resources.

PensionsOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we have to take action right now to make sure that there are funds there for seniors and the OAS system, not just for today's seniors but for the seniors of the future.

Old age security is funded through general revenue. The numbers are very clear. With the shift in demographics, we will have fewer people in the workplace taking care of a much bigger number of retirees.

We have to make some changes to make sure that those who are most vulnerable do have access to the program in the future, and that is exactly why we will take action and that is exactly what we will do.

PensionsOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Joyce Murray Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister does not seem to understand the real consequences of these OAS changes for real people in Vancouver Quadra, who have told me, “My wife has worked for 27 years and has no pension. Moving the age from 65 to 67 will put more strain on seniors to work longer”. Another said, “This is totally unacceptable. I have been in the work force for 44 years. I have paid taxes for all these years and now they want people like me to be penalized”.

Will the government stop its mean-spirited assault on hard-working Canadians and get its hands off their old age security?

PensionsOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Haldimand—Norfolk Ontario

Conservative

Diane Finley ConservativeMinister of Human Resources and Skills Development

Mr. Speaker, we have been very clear that people who have been in the workforce for 44 years is probably pretty close to retirement. They will not be affected by these changes. Those who are already retired will not be affected by any changes that we will bring in because we want to protect what they have.

If we do not take action now, there may not even be an OAS system for the future. We have to ensure we take steps that are responsible and gradual so people who still have time to plan can take that time to plan and adjust their plans so they, too, can have a fruitful retirement.

Energy EfficiencyOral questions

February 15th, 2012 / 2:55 p.m.

NDP

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

Mr. Speaker, I love talking about jobs and job creation, but this government is continuing its fight against the environment and against jobs since the eco-energy retrofit program is ending earlier than planned. Roughly 1,000 businesses that specialize in energy efficiency might have to close their doors if the program is not renewed. Thousands of households will not be entitled to these subsidies. No work done, therefore no jobs and no energy savings.

Will the government renew this program that is beneficial to the environment and employment?

Energy EfficiencyOral questions

2:55 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, the NDP voted against this program which it now wants to extend after it has been completed. The eco-energy program has been very successful in creating jobs across the country, while allowing Canadians to make their homes more efficient.

To ensure that participants can participate, we have extended the deadline for retrofit evaluations. We have to balance the cost, after 250,000 people have subscribed, with the cost to taxpayers.

TransportOral questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, while greater Victoria is still waiting for Transport Canada's decision on whether to allow a mega yacht marina in the harbour, the developer is already moving ahead. This is despite serious aviation safety issues with float planes landing in what is already a very busy marine channel. Over the past decade there have been numerous near misses between aircraft and marine vessels and this giant private marina for mega yachts would only make things worse.

Will the Conservatives, for once, put aside their ties to big business and commit to putting aviation safety and the safety of harbour users ahead of the interests of this developer and the mega yachts of the super rich?

TransportOral questions

3 p.m.

Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Conservative

Denis Lebel ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I was in B.C. two weeks and met a lot of stakeholders concerned with this issue and many other issues. At Transport Canada, security and safety is very important and we are analyzing it for the moment.

Aboriginal AffairsOral questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

Jay Aspin Conservative Nipissing—Timiskaming, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government has been working hard to ensure the health and safety of the people of Attawapiskat. We have called on the chief and the council to work with us and a third party manager to ensure funds flow quickly for essential services and to prepare lots for the modular homes.

Could the minister update the House on the status of these efforts and the important role the third party manager is playing in securing safe, warm shelter and delivering essential services for the people of the community?

Aboriginal AffairsOral questions

3 p.m.

Vancouver Island North B.C.

Conservative

John Duncan ConservativeMinister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to say that yesterday Chief Spence advised me that she would be providing the third party manager with the information he needed to flow funds to the community. This will allow the third party manager to confirm the payment of teachers' salaries. As well, this will allow construction crews to continue their important work preparing the sites for the 22 modular homes purchased with federal funds. This is a positive development in working together in the best interests of the community.

Defence Construction CanadaOral questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

Mr. Speaker, serious allegations have been made regarding gross improprieties of Defence Construction Canada. These allegations include financial irregularities, glaring technical incompetence and a soft landing pad for retiring forces personnel.

Will the government support my motion to study this matter at committee and will the minister commit to attend the meeting and explain what actions her department is taking?

Defence Construction CanadaOral questions

3 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 the member well knows, I cannot dictate to the committee what it will do or what it will examine. He will have to make his case to the committee.

However, he has made his case to me and, as Minister of Public Works and Government Services, I have already informed him that my department will be investigating this. We are waiting to receive the full report from the union so we are able to do that.

He should also know that this organization is audited by the defence department, public works and also has its own audit measures within Defence Construction Canada. As well, the Auditor General will be looking at this. If there are any documented allegations, we will forward them to him for sure.