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House of Commons Hansard #73 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was sector.

Topics

High-Speed InternetStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

NDP

Ruth Ellen Brosseau NDP Berthier—Maskinongé, QC

Madam Speaker, from coast to coast to coast, many regions still do not have access to competitive high-speed Internet service. In Quebec, the people of Berthier—Maskinongé are no exception. Following a meeting between elected officials and the people of my riding, I decided it was time to take action. Although we know that the Internet is an essential tool for communication in 2012, the infrastructure to provide such service in rural areas remains inadequate.

Marjolaine Cloutier, from Saint-Justin, pays $140 a month for high-speed service, but gets mediocre-speed service instead, despite the broadband Canada program. For well-established telecommunications companies, connecting the remote regions is not always profitable. The status quo keeps their basic service profitable. It is time for high-speed Internet to be accessible and affordable to all Canadian families.

MulticulturalismStatements By Members

February 3rd, 2012 / 11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Conservative Calgary East, AB

Madam Speaker, first, I wish the residents of Calgary East a happy new year.

My riding, as others across the country, represents the Canadian multicultural mosaic. It is home to people of the first nations, English, French, Germans, Italians, Ukrainians, Fijians, South Asians, Middle Easterners, Vietnamese, Filipinos and most recently from the continent of Africa. All these people from different cultural and religious backgrounds live and work side by side in all neighbourhoods. Their priorities are the same: stable jobs, safe streets and good schools, so they can live peacefully and raise their children. Seniors want to retire peacefully.

My riding sends a strong message to the world that those who endorse a doctrine of hatred toward others will not succeed. I am proud to represent the good folks of Calgary East.

Child PornographyStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Conservative Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Madam Speaker, yesterday law enforcement in Ontario announced the outcome of a province-wide child pornography investigation that resulted in 213 charges being laid against 60 individuals, including sexual assault, child luring, possession, distribution and creation of child pornography. Most important, 22 child victims were rescued and are now receiving care.

Our government has taken leadership in combatting online child exploitation by increasing penalties for child pornography and creating new offences that hold predators accountable.

I want to commend the Ontario Provincial Police Child Sexual Exploitation Section and the 23 law enforcement agencies involved in this investigation for their dedication and commitment to tracking down these predators. These investigations are long and complex and exert significant emotional and physical tolls on the officers involved.

As a nation, it is incumbent on each of us to support efforts that protect children, hold predators accountable and restore rescued victims.

Quebec Winter CarnivalStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

NDP

Annick Papillon NDP Québec, QC

Madam Speaker, the Quebec Winter Carnival is showing off its colours until February 12. This is the 58th edition of the largest winter carnival in the world. This festival provides an ideal opportunity to discover or rediscover the charms of Quebec City whose heritage is unique in North America. Every year, Bonhomme Carnaval warmly welcomes more than a million visitors who participate in hundreds of activities. Whether you attend the legendary night parade or the canoe race on the St. Lawrence River or visit Place de la famille on the Plains of Abraham, you will be entertained.

The carnival was established by the business community and today is a symbol of success that brings $30 million into Quebec City's economy. I invite everyone, young and old, to the heart of my riding, Québec, to celebrate with me in the coming days. I once worked for the Quebec Winter Carnival and I would like to personally salute and thank all the organizers of this major festival as well as the many volunteers.

Thank you everyone. Come and enjoy the carnival.

Rusk Family and Donald McNameeStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Ryan Leef Conservative Yukon, YT

Madam Speaker, I rise today on a sad occasion. A Yukon family, Brad and Valerie Rusk, their children, Gabriel and Rebekah, as well as their friend, Donald McNamee were all found dead in their home last Sunday. Officials say that carbon monoxide is likely to blame. When firefighters arrived at their home, carbon monoxide levels were 10 times the amount that would be picked up by a standard home alarm. Therefore, I encourage all Canadians to ensure they have a carbon monoxide detector in their home.

This is a tragic accident that is tough for any size of community and especially hard for a town as small and as close-knit as Whitehorse. This sad event reaches across territorial boundaries as the family and close friends who live in other provinces head north to say goodbye to their beloved family.

For the family and close friends, especially the schoolmates of Gabriel and Rebekah, our thoughts are with them. For the emergency services workers whose duty in times like this is both harrowing and emotional, we thank them for their courage and professionalism under the most heartbreaking of circumstances.

EmploymentStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

NDP

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

Madam Speaker, the employment situation continues to deteriorate in the Quebec City region. The unemployment rate rose again in January, following a constant trend over the past few months. The closure last month of White Birch Paper, where 600 workers were thrown out in the street, is but one example. The workers were simply asserting to their American boss their right to access their pensions, which they had paid into their entire lives. The Quebec government is rolling up its sleeves and trying to bring in private investors to reopen the plant.

The Conservative government, on the other hand, is doing nothing once again. It is simply shameful to ignore the dire circumstances facing the forest products industry in Quebec and across Canada. The government must take action to strengthen the Investment Canada Act in order to prevent foreign companies from jeopardizing jobs in our communities. Canadian families are fed up with mere rhetoric; they want action.

Innovation Commercialization ProgramStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

David Wilks Conservative Kootenay—Columbia, BC

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to speak to the success of our government's Canadian innovation commercialization program.

The goal of this kick-start initiative is to bolster the innovations that drive economic growth by helping Canadian businesses to commercialize their innovative products and services. This government recognizes that innovation fuels business competitiveness, quality and productivity and, ultimately, jobs for hard-working Canadians.

One businessperson has said that this program is “about the government recognizing that the gap between innovators' ideas and the marketplace is simply someone willing to bet on them, willing to take a chance on their product and then willing to give them feedback”.

Today our government has announced that we are doing just that with 35 more Canadian businesses promoting 36 innovations. We know this is an important step to help them create jobs and economic growth in Canada.

Marguerite LewisStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Liberal Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Madam Speaker, I would like to draw the attention of the House to the passing of a passionate Canadian.

Marguerite Lewis was a woman who lived to help others, a woman of principle, determination, heart and compassion, a loyal friend and a stalwart Liberal proud of her Acadian roots.

The headline in Cités Nouvelles described her as an iron lady. It is true because she held to her convictions and because she worked tirelessly for the good of others, particularly for seniors who cannot always afford the quality of life they deserve.

Marguerite was a tireless advocate for seniors, including the veterans at her local legion. She founded Aid for Seniors, a program that connects young helpers to seniors in need, and she organized annual lunches where golden agers could come together for a meal and companionship.

For her community action, Marguerite was rightly honoured with the Governor General's Caring Canadian Award and the Lions Club Award for Outstanding Community Service.

We offer our deepest condolences to her daughter Diane and husband Ted, granddaughters Caroline and Robin, brother Réné and sisters Eliza and Léa.

Employment InsuranceStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Dick Harris Conservative Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Madam Speaker, on Tuesday at the Standing Committee on Human Resources and Skills Development, the NDP and Liberals reaffirmed their belief that convicted criminals were more entitled to employment insurance benefits than law-abiding citizens.

On Tuesday, I moved forward on my private member's bill, which would remove the preferential access convicted felons have to EI over law-abiding citizens. Not surprising, instead of standing with victims of crime and advocating fairness, the NDP and the Liberals were more interested in promoting the preferred EI benefits of convicted felons.

When will the opposition members get their heads out of the sand and realize that convicted criminals should have the same rules as law-abiding citizens when it comes to EI benefits?

This is yet another example of how the opposition would prefer to put the rights of convicted criminals ahead of law-abiding, hard-working Canadians.

AsbestosStatements By Members

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Dan Harris NDP Scarborough Southwest, ON

Madam Speaker, the Conservatives continue to spread cancer and death in developing countries.

Yesterday we learned that the study on the safety and use of asbestos, funded by the industry itself and the government, is fraudulent. The study by a group of researchers from McGill University is incorrect, lacks transparency and contains manipulated data, according to an epidemiologist. It is a study that gives a green light for discharging carcinogenic asbestos in developing countries where workers have no protection.

The study was funded by taxpayer dollars. The government and those preceding it invested $20 million in the last 30 years. Instead of listening to doctors in the international community who affirm that asbestos is deadly, the Conservatives prefer to side with their friends and asbestos lobbyists.

This government is the only one denying that asbestos is dangerous. It is the only one that has blocked the listing of asbestos as a hazardous substance under the Rotterdam Convention—

AsbestosStatements By Members

11:15 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker NDP Denise Savoie

Order, please. The hon. member for Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley.

Member for Winnipeg CentreStatements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

Scott Armstrong Conservative Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley, NS

Madam Speaker, the NDP member for Winnipeg Centre is at it again with a vicious personal and abusive attack on the senator from La Salle. It is unacceptable when a member of a party which is so soft on crime attacks someone who has been such a tragic victim of crime.

The members of the NDP have opposed every tough on crime measure our government has brought forward in this House. They even opposed the repeal of the faint hope clause, a clause which would have given convicted first degree murderers like Clifford Olson the opportunity for early parole. That is unacceptable.

The member for Winnipeg Centre should apologize in this House for his vicious, personal and abusive attack upon the senator. The senator's family has suffered enough. It is time for the member to stand up and do the honourable thing.

EmploymentOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Madam Speaker, Canadians are paying the price for the government's inaction when it comes to the economy. The unemployment rate went up again in January, and behind the statistics are thousands of families who are suffering.

Are the Conservatives ever going to wake up? Probably not. Their economic inaction plan is not working. When will we have a real job creation plan?

EmploymentOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

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

Madam Speaker, the priorities of our government are the priorities of Canadians: economic growth and job creation. Fortunately, among the G7 developed countries, Canada has the strongest employment growth, with the creation of more than 600,000 net new jobs since July 2009. We are focusing on job creation and we intend to continue to focus on that priority.

EmploymentOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Madam Speaker, the Conservatives keep repeating those statistics that are clearly not in keeping with what is the net job loss in the country. For example, there are 45,000 fewer workers in the professional, scientific and technical service industries. Manufacturing is down 44,000 jobs just in the last 12 months. More and more Canadians are looking for jobs that simply do not exist.

As employment is going down, what are the Conservatives planning to do? They are planning to cut the OAS and force people to wait until they are 67 to get the help they need. With no job creation and a cut in pension benefits, what are people supposed to do?

EmploymentOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

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

Madam Speaker, we are very fortunate that Canada has been doing well relative to other major developed economies during what has been the most dramatic global economic downturn in my lifetime. That is in large part due to the fact that our government has pursued an economic action plan, a low tax plan for jobs and growth, that has delivered over 600,000 net new jobs for Canadians.

While that is good news, we know we have much more to do. That is why, for example, in the fall we brought forward legislation to establish a tax credit for small businesses to hire new employees. What did the opposition member and all the opposition do? They voted against that tax credit. We are delivering on our plan for jobs and growth.

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Madam Speaker, the 600,000 figure the Conservatives keep using is not net new jobs. Net new jobs are in a negative position.

We voted against the budget, and we will continue to vote against budgets that simply give tax breaks to the Conservatives' billionaire and millionaire friends.

The unemployment rate in this country is up. The Conservatives' strategy is not working. After taking millions in corporate tax giveaways directly from the Prime Minister, Caterpillar just closed down in London. Five hundred well-paying manufacturing jobs have gone south to the United States.

The NDP has been saying this for months, but the government refuses to listen. Does the government realize what is happening in the economy in Canada?

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

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

Madam Speaker, it is fascinating that the hon. member opposite just described tens of thousands of Canadians who run small businesses and create jobs for millions across the country as millionaires and billionaires, who they want to vote against. We will not tolerate that. We are on the side of those who are out there struggling to get ahead. When we established the tax credit for hiring for small businesses, it was to help people who are entrepreneurs, who are taking risks, who are creating jobs for their neighbours, for the people in their communities, so that everybody in Canada can get ahead.

That is what we are focused on, jobs and economic growth for Canadians across the country.

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

NDP

Hoang Mai NDP Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Madam Speaker, what is upsetting is to have the Conservatives make all kinds of excuses rather than face reality.

In Montreal, jobs continue to disappear; the unemployment rate is 9%. We are talking about Quebec's economic hub. A change in direction is needed. Where is that change in direction?

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Madam Speaker, as we have often stated in the House, our government is working on creating jobs and maintaining economic growth. In terms of economic growth, Canada is well positioned in comparison with all other countries. As we have seen, the IMF and the OECD have said that, in the coming years, Canada will be the place to establish companies and do business. That is what we will continue to do. We really need the NDP's help. They have to stop trying to add their $10 billion in taxes—

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker NDP Denise Savoie

Order, please. The hon. member for Brossard—La Prairie

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

NDP

Hoang Mai NDP Brossard—La Prairie, QC

Madam Speaker, the reality is that the Quebec economy has lost 45,000 jobs in the past year. The unemployment rate is increasing in Montreal and Quebec City. The small number of jobs created are mostly part-time and low paying. There is not enough work for the growing labour force.

Why refuse to face facts? Why stubbornly persist with an inaction plan that does not work?

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Saint Boniface Manitoba

Conservative

Shelly Glover ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Madam Speaker, as we have said, more than 610,000 jobs have been created since the downturn. Our government will definitely continue to provide businesses with an environment that is conducive to job creation. The private sector created 90% of these jobs and 80% of them were full-time jobs. What are we hearing from the stakeholders? Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters confirmed in a report that reducing the tax burden leads to job creation. Therefore—

EmploymentOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker NDP Denise Savoie

Order. The hon. member for Wascana.

PensionsOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Madam Speaker, at a time when Canadian unemployment is worse, and again worse in the last hour with the closure of the Electro-Motive plant in London, when economic growth has stalled and even turned, when household debt is at a record high with the heaviest burden falling on older people heading for retirement, namely the baby boomers, why is the government now doing what it promised explicitly and repeatedly never to do? The government is threatening the old age pensions of those future retirees. Why is the government doing this, when the OAS is already fundamentally sound?