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 #94 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was drugs.

Topics

Procedure and House AffairsCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Joe Preston Conservative Elgin—Middlesex—London, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the 16th report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs.

The committee advises that pursuant to Standing Order 91.1(2), the Subcommittee on Private Members' Business met to consider the items added to the order of precedence as a result of the replenishment on Thursday, February 16, 2012, and recommended that the items listed in the report which it has determined should not be designated non-votable be considered by the House.

Procedure and House AffairsCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Pursuant to Standing Order 91.1(2), this report is deemed concurred in.

(Motion agreed to)

Justice and Human RightsCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Dave MacKenzie Conservative Oxford, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the fifth report of the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights in relation to Bill C-26, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (citizen's arrest and the defences of property and persons).

The committee has studied the bill and has decided to report the bill back to the House with amendments.

International TradeCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Rob Merrifield Conservative Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the first report of the Standing Committee on International Trade in relation to the study of the comprehensive economic trade agreement with the European Union.

This agreement would allow us to capitalize on a population of 500 million, a third of the world's GDP. This would be the most comprehensive free trade agreement, if passed, in both of our respective jurisdictions. It is much more comprehensive than NAFTA. A witness told committee that this agreement would add $1,000 per year to the average Canadian household.

Pursuant to Standing Order 109, the committee requests that the government table a comprehensive response to this report.

AbortionPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Merv Tweed Conservative Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present a petition from people from western Manitoba.

The petitioners note that Canada is the only nation in the western world, in the company of China and North Korea, without any laws restricting abortion. Therefore, they call upon the House of Commons and Parliament to assemble and speedily enact legislation that restricts abortion to the greatest extent possible.

SeniorsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions to present. The first petition is signed by 99 people from my riding of Acadie—Bathurst, who are asking the government to maintain funding for old age security and to make the necessary investments to enhance GIS benefits to lift every senior out of poverty.

Public ServicesPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, the second petition comes to us from people in the Atlantic provinces and Quebec. I am pleased to present a petition containing over 4,575 names calling on the government to reverse plans to cut jobs and public services by $4 billion; to maintain and improve federal public services to all Canadians; and to reverse corporate tax cuts as a cost-effective way to reduce the deficit.

The petitioners believe that public services are a major contributor to the security and prosperity of our families and communities. Cuts to services undermine our safety, our health and our environment and reduce families’ spending power, hurting the economy.

Multiple SclerosisPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition to file today signed by a number of people across a broad swath of central Saskatchewan, including the great constituency of Regina—Qu'Appelle, who are expressing their concern about chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency.

The petitioners call upon the Minister of Health to consult experts who have practical experience in dealing with CCSVI. They urge the minister to proceed with phase III clinical trials on an urgent basis. They also urge the minister to require follow-up of patients with Doppler ultrasound and clinical examinations in the period after their treatments, whether those treatments happen in Canada or abroad.

This is one of a long series of petitions from the Saskatchewan people expressing concern about this very difficult condition because one of the highest incidents of MS and CCSVI in Canada occurs in the province of Saskatchewan.

Human TraffickingPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

March 12th, 2012 / 11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Conservative Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Mr. Speaker, I would like to present a number of petitions from people across Canada who are calling on our government to put forward a national action plan to combat human trafficking in our country. This was a national action plan that was announced during the last election. These people want to see that this is done.

Human RightsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Rathika Sitsabaiesan NDP Scarborough—Rouge River, ON

Mr. Speaker, today I rise to present petitions on behalf of members of the greater Toronto area with respect to human rights in Sri Lanka.

We know the United Nations had a panel of experts who studied the conditions of what happened during the last phase of the war. There were credible allegations that war crimes and crimes against humanity took place on the island of Sri Lanka.

The petitioners call upon the Government of Canada to urge the United Nations to immediately establish an independent, international and impartial mechanism to ensure truth, accountability and justice in Sri Lanka.

The EnvironmentPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Ted Hsu Liberal Kingston and the Islands, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to present a petition from the electors in Kingston and the Islands who call upon the Government of Canada to assume direct responsibility through Environment Canada for monitoring, in a long-term way, climate change in the Canadian Arctic and to make those data freely available to interested researchers.

This is especially urgent now because we know there will be imminent termination of funding for year-round operations at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory and getting long-term data from measurements like that will be very important for understanding what will happen to the Arctic when climate change occurs. We know that the Arctic will be most affected and, if we want to have sovereignty over the Arctic, we should be understanding of what is happening up there.

I believe the government would support this because the Minister of the Environment once stood up in question period and said, “Our government believes that what gets measured gets done.” I hope the government will commit to measuring the effects of climate change in the Arctic.

AbortionPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

Rob Merrifield Conservative Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, I have four petitions from the riding of Yellowhead.

The petitioners recognize that the Supreme Court said that Parliament was responsible for enacting abortion legislation. They request that the House of Commons enacts legislation as fast as possible to restrict abortion to the greatest extent possible.

TelecommunicationsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Andrew Cash NDP Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, recently the Minister of Public Safety stood in his place and declared that those who do not agree with the government's lawful access legislation are standing with child pornographers.

That is what the minister is saying to the people in my riding who signed this petition expressing their grave concerns over the Conservative government's online spying bill.

Putting aside the minister's insult, not just to the people of my riding but to people right across the country who are concerned about the bill, the folks who signed this petition did so because they believe that the fundamental underpinnings of a democratic society is the protection of privacy—

TelecommunicationsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

David Sweet Conservative Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Westdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I understand that this is the time for petitions but it was my understanding, procedurally, that members were not supposed to speak for or against a petition. It is my understanding that the member has clearly taken a position on this, which is against the Standing Orders.

TelecommunicationsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

I would encourage the hon. member for Davenport to provide a brief summary of the petitions that he is presenting. We could then accommodate more members who wish to present petitions.

TelecommunicationsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

NDP

Andrew Cash NDP Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, the people of Davenport have grave concerns about the government's lawful access legislation, in particular the underpinnings of a democratic society or the protection of civil liberties and privacy.

That is what the petitioners are concerned about and that is what I present, respectfully, to the House today.

Income Tax ActPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

Russ Hiebert Conservative South Surrey—White Rock—Cloverdale, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise and present a petition on behalf of the people of South Surrey—White Rock—Cloverdale.

The petition states, in part, that one of the hallmarks of a stable and mature democracy is financial transparency and accountability, that the majority of Canadians believe that labour unions should be required to disclose how they spend their union dues, and that labour union financial transparency would allow Canadians to gauge the effectiveness and financial integrity and health of unions.

The petitioners ask that the House pass the disclosure legislation as quickly as possible.

Bottled WaterPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:15 a.m.

Green

Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise this afternoon to present two petitions.

The first petition is on the subject of the use of bottled water in federal buildings and within the House of Commons. It comes from Canadians from coast to coast, from my riding of Saanich—Gulf Islands all the way to Ontario, and some from Quebec.

This is an issue that many Canadians are concerned about, both from the point of view of solid waste, the tapping of aquifers and the ongoing question of undermining our public services in potable and very high-quality tap water in Canada.

Aboriginal AffairsPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

Green

Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, my second petition today is signed by people from an even wider variety of Canadian locations, Calgary, Toronto, Guelph, Hamilton and Saturna Island within my own riding.

The petitioners call upon the Government of Canada to cease and desist from promoting the northern gateway pipeline and, relevant to an exchange earlier in question period between the hon. member for Edmonton—Strathcona and the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, calls on full, fair and proper consultations in respecting first nations' inherent rights.

AbortionPetitionsRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

Conservative

Colin Mayes Conservative Okanagan—Shuswap, BC

Mr. Speaker, I wish to present three petitions on behalf of my constituents of Okanagan—Shuswap.

The 249 petitioners are calling upon Parliament to enact legislation to restrict abortion to the greatest extent possible.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, Question No. 410 will be answered today.

Question No. 410Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière NDP Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

With regard to the Office of Religious Freedom: (a) when did the government decide to establish an Office of Religious Freedom and at whose request; (b) what is the mandate and the objectives of this office; (c) what is the budget breakdown of the office for (i) staff, (ii) programs, (iii) operations; (d) what is the reporting structure of the office; (e) what will the office produce; (f) how many people will be employed in this office and what will be their level; (g) what are the hiring criteria and salary levels for each person employed in this office; (h) how will this office work differently from other sections of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) already working on human rights issues; (i) who was consulted regarding the creation of the office, (i) when did the consultations take place, (ii) what are the names and affiliations of those who were consulted; (j) what are the names, positions, and religious affiliations of the guests who attended consultations on a new Office of Religious Freedom in October 2011, (i) how many people from religions including, but not limited to, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Taoism, Buddhism were invited to the meeting, (ii) how were the panellists and participants chosen for the meeting with Minister Baird, (iii) who made the final decisions on panellists and participants chosen for the meeting, (iv) what discussions were held at DFAIT about inviting Amnesty International and why was this organization not invited; and (k) who are the employees responsible for the development of the Office of Religious Freedom within (i) the PMO, (ii) the Foreign Affairs Minister’s Office, (iii) other Ministers’ offices, (iv) DFAIT, (v) other government departments?

Question No. 410Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the promotion and protection of human rights is fundamental to Canada’s foreign policy, and the Government of Canada believes strongly in the ability of all people to be free to practise their religion of choice. Canadians enjoy the rights and privileges that come with living in a free and democratic society in which human rights are respected. The government is also keenly aware of the struggles that religious minorities face around the world. During the Speech from the Throne on June 3, 2011, and again at the United Nations General Assembly, the Government of Canada committed to creating an office of religious freedom.

At this time, no formal announcement has been made and work is ongoing. It is expected that the office will focus on areas such as advocacy, analysis, policy development and programming related to protecting and advocating on behalf of religious minorities under threat; opposing religious hatred; and promoting Canadian values of pluralism and tolerance abroad. The budget for the office will be $5 million per annum for the next 4 years. The government expects to have more to say about this important initiative shortly.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, if Question No. 409 could be made an order for return, this return would also be tabled immediately.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnRoutine Proceedings

11:20 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

Is that agreed?