This week, I changed much of the tech behind this site. If you see anything that looks like a bug, please let me know!

House of Commons Hansard #84 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was agreement.

Topics

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we have legislation in Canada and a directive that public servants interpret in terms of granting export permits or not. These decisions are made at the public service level.

Let me say that I read the issue that the member opposite has raised. Every two or three years that cabinet directive is reviewed and I certainly would review it. I would welcome her suggestions and advice. If she wants to ask the member for London—Fanshawe for her suggestions and advice, they do make those materials and trucks in her constituency.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière NDP Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, more than 35 people were killed and the human rights of hundreds more were violated in Bahrain. Weapons manufactured in Canada must not be used against civilians.

Canada no longer produces an annual report on exports of military equipment. The most recent report covers the period that ended in 2009. Canadians have the right to more transparency.

Will the minister ensure that these reports are produced on an annual basis?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, as I have said, this directive is reviewed every two or three years and I will certainly use that occasion to consider her thoughtful suggestion.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Sadia Groguhé NDP Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, this government has not managed to reduce the waiting lists for immigration applications. Even though the Conservatives promised to solve the problem four years ago, things have just continued to get worse. The waiting time in most classes has increased. Some people have now been waiting more than seven years. Waiting for years for a simple answer affects families and has disastrous consequences for the economy.

What does the minister have to say to these families who are waiting for their cases to be heard?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the member for her question.

Since this government came to power six years ago, immigration to Canada has risen by 14%, which means an increase in the number of permanent residents settling in Canada, including in the family class, where we have increased the number of parents and grandparents admitted to Canada by 60%, thanks to the action plan for faster family reunification. So we are making progress. Before, the problem was that the number of immigration applications exceeded the number of people admissible. The Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration has therefore done a study, and I am eager to see its recommendations on this point.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Sadia Groguhé NDP Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, the problems associated with immigration are not limited just to waiting lists. Le Devoir revealed this morning that under Bill C-31, the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism wants to reserve the right to take permanent resident status away from anyone who ceases to be protected by refugee status. This is a major change that affects the status of thousands of residents.

Why make this change, which threatens permanent residents? And why concentrate so much power in the hands of the minister?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, it is simply because there are cases where people receive Canada's protection, through a positive refugee protection decision, and immediately return to their country of origin. When refugee protection claimants settle in Canada and make a claim for protection because they are afraid to return to their country, then receive Canada's protection but return to their country, that is an indication of a fraudulent refugee protection claim.

What worries me and does not trouble the NDP at all is fraud; these people are circumventing the immigration system. Yes, we have to be open, but we have to protect—

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Etobicoke North.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment appears astonished that Environment Canada conducted 1,000 interviews last year. However, between 2008 and 2010, scientists answered at least 2,000 media requests per year. The government's policy of muzzling scientists has been very successful.

When will the government introduce an integrity policy that allows scientists to speak freely?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Thornhill Ontario

Conservative

Peter Kent ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, my department appreciates the interest of Canadians and journalists in the environmental science that is done on their behalf. Canadians can indeed be proud of the many international papers and reports that are published and of the many hundreds, more than 1,000 interviews given.

However, I would remind my colleague that the scientists are enabled to speak on the scientific work that they do, but our government speaks with regard to the policy.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives are unjustifiably proud of their sanctions against Iran, which lack teeth.

In their haste to build pipelines all over the country, they are happy to do business with, for example, Chinese companies that also do business with Iran.

The Conservatives want everyone to know how tough they are; meanwhile, the back door is wide open.

Our allies, such as the United States, do not permit such breaches in their sanctions.

Why do our sanctions have a double standard when it comes to Iran?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, let me be clear. All Canadian-based companies and their subsidiaries are subject to and are required to follow Canadian laws and Canadian sanctions.

Canada has worked with our allies, with the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom and others, to have some of the toughest sanctions in the world when it comes to Iran and the huge problems that exist there.

We are certainly prepared to do anything we can to strengthen those sanctions, to make them tougher and to try to ensure that peace and security is protected in the world.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Linda Duncan NDP Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission has determined that residential schools constitute an assault on aboriginal children, their families and their culture. In the opinion of the commission, these schools also constituted an assault on self-government and self-sustaining aboriginal nations.

Will the government now move beyond the apology? Will it heed the advice of the commission and use the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as the framework for reconciliation between aboriginals and non-aboriginal peoples?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Vancouver Island North B.C.

Conservative

John Duncan ConservativeMinister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, we thank the Truth and Reconciliation Commission for its work.

Through the settlement agreement provided to and agreed to by all the parties, our government did provide $60 million for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to carry out its mandate. We provided additional funds to assist in the cost of administering a federal department. Significant funds have been committed to providing in-kind services and supporting the Aboriginal Healing Foundation and creating the advocacy and public information program.

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Glenn Thibeault NDP Sudbury, ON

Mr. Speaker, against the advice of his own department, the former minister of industry threw out three years of work and $1.4 million. Big telecomm decided to phone a friend and just like that the minister hung up on Canadians.

Conservatives are the ones who swear by the power of the market. Therefore, why did they interfere and drop a cellphone plan calculator that would have helped Canadians save money and pick the plan best suited for their needs?

TelecommunicationsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, in 2009 the government did cancel this program because it did not represent the full spectrum of offerings available to consumers. Technical limitations restricted the calculator to voice and text plans and did not include data plans, handset costs, bundling or promotional offers.

The market dynamics contributing to our decision in 2009 continue today. However, we will look for other means to provide consumers with clarity on cellphone costs.

JusticeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

David Wilks Conservative Kootenay—Columbia, BC

Mr. Speaker, the protection of all Canadians against violence, especially children, is a continued priority for our government. Today we continued second reading debate on my private member's bill C-299, kidnapping of a young child.

Canadians across the country were shocked when young Kienan Hebert was taken from his home. Thankfully he was returned safely, but the emotional toll this took is incalculable.

My legislation would impose a five year mandatory minimum sentence on strangers convicted of kidnapping a child. Could the minister please inform the House about the government's position on my legislation?

JusticeOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Niagara Falls Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson ConservativeMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, first, I thank the member for Kootenay—Columbia for introducing this important legislation and for all his years protecting Canadians as a member of the RCMP.

The bill would ensure that a stronger, more appropriate penalty would be given to those who kidnap children. The bill also serves as a welcome complement to the safe streets and communities act, which would impose a number of stronger sentences on those who commit sexual offences against children.

I am pleased to report that the government completely supports Bill C-299. I encourage all members to do so as well.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

John McKay Liberal Scarborough—Guildwood, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week the Minister of National Defence said that Canada would get 65 F-35s for $9 billion. This week Canadian officials are in Washington to discuss problems with these planes. What problems will be discussed: technical problems, waning international confidence or soaring costs? When the U.K. minister was asked in the House of Commons about the soaring costs of the F-35 he said, “The honest answer is we don't know”.

Would the minister give this House of Commons a similar honest answer?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Vaughan Ontario

Conservative

Julian Fantino ConservativeAssociate Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, we are always discussing these issues with our allies and partners in the multinational Joint Strike Fighter program. We agreed that it would be beneficial to be updated in person on the progress and challenges of the program. Canada will be hosting this update as soon as March 2. This is the responsible leadership role that we have taken.

HealthOral Questions

February 27th, 2012 / 2:55 p.m.

NDP

Pierre Nantel NDP Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher, QC

Mr. Speaker, that was very energetic. Last week, 700 employees at the Sandoz drug factory in Boucherville learned that they would have to reduce the factory's output because the U.S. FDA found that the factory's practices were not in compliance with standards. How is it that U.S. authorities discovered problems in the factories that serve the Canadian market?

Instead of letting other countries conclude that our factories do not comply with standards, putting people's health, our jobs, and our drug supply at risk, will the minister tell us her plan to clean up this appalling mess?

HealthOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Nunavut Nunavut

Conservative

Leona Aglukkaq ConservativeMinister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Mr. Speaker, our government is playing a leadership role when it comes to dealing with drug shortages. We are doing our part to ensure that the information about drug shortages is made available as quickly as possible. We are also working to ensure relevant information and access to safe alternatives is not held up in red tape. If some industry players do not meet their responsibilities in providing information in a timely manner, we will consider all other options.

International AidOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Devinder Shory Conservative Calgary Northeast, AB

Mr. Speaker, people around the world are expressing concern as the Sahel region continues to experience drought and a deficit in food production. More than 8.8 million people are suffering, having barely any time to recover from the crisis that took place during 2009 and 2010.

Our government took action during the famine in East Africa, fulfilling our responsibilities and assisting those in need. Could the minister for CIDA update the House on the government's response to this crisis?

International AidOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, we are concerned with the situation in the Sahel region, a region with some of the worst child mortality levels and acute malnutrition. Over 10 million people are facing a perfect storm: high food prices, extreme poverty and year after year of drought. If we do not act now, they will be facing a severe humanitarian crisis in the coming months. That is why I have announced that Canada is taking action now and is the second largest country to support the people in the Sahel region with food, water, nutrition and health care.

Official LanguagesOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, for some time now, the NDP has been criticizing the deplorable situation that prevails in employment insurance services. Not only have processing times quadrupled, but on top of that, we are receiving more and more complaints from francophones who cannot obtain service in French. Every day this government is demonstrating how little regard it has for Canada's Francophonie.

Is the anglicizing of Service Canada services merely a negative side effect of budget cuts or is it a deliberate attempt to suppress French in Canada?