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House of Commons Hansard #144 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was aboriginal.

Topics

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Jinny Sims NDP Newton—North Delta, BC

Mr. Speaker, Canada Day is coming up, but it will not be a happy one for many refugees who lose their health care coverage on July 1. After that date, some pregnant women who arrive in Canada as refugee claimants will have no prenatal or obstetrical care at all. Where does the minister expect these women to give birth?

Today, on World Refugee Day, will the minister reverse these reckless and short-sighted cuts?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

In fact, Mr. Speaker, after these changes, all of the re-established refugees whom we welcome and the vast majority of asylum claimants would receive that kind of care.

However, it seems to be the NDP's position that even failed and false asylum claimants who have had the benefit of due process, whose claims have been rejected by our fair legal system and who want to stay in Canada illegally for several years should continue receiving federally funded health benefits, including supplementary benefits that are not available to taxpaying Canadians, and we fundamentally disagree.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Jinny Sims NDP Newton—North Delta, BC

Mr. Speaker, those comments are so misleading and so callous.

These cuts will harm the most vulnerable. A refugee child suffering from epilepsy in Canada will no longer get medication as of July 1. As a teacher, I can say that when a child has seizures in the classroom, it affects the learning environment of every single child.

What does the minister have to say to the parents of these children? Will the minister deny essential medicine to children in Canada?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Once again, Mr. Speaker, all resettled refugees and the vast majority of asylum claimants will continue to receive comprehensive medically necessary care, the same kind of care that is available to all Canadian residents and citizens through their tax-funded provincial health systems.

We will, however, remove supplementary benefits, such as dental care and glasses, that are not available to Canadians through their taxpayer-funded system, and we will not continue to give federal health insurance to rejected failed asylum claimants who, after all, have lost the privilege of remaining in Canada.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Sadia Groguhé NDP Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, at the end of the month, many refugees will lose their access to health care.

How can we tell a woman who is suffering from post traumatic stress disorder that she can no longer get anti-depressants or see a psychiatrist for treatment?

How can we tell a mother who has recently come to Canada to flee danger and war that she and her child are not eligible for care?

Will the Conservatives reverse their decision to cut access to health care for refugees?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, all resettled refugees, or the vast majority of asylum seekers, will continue to receive basic medicare for all the services available under the provincial programs. Nonetheless, we are eliminating coverage for some of the supplementary insurance that is not available to Canadian taxpayers. What is more, we are ending medicare for failed asylum claimants who have lost the privilege of staying in Canada.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Sadia Groguhé NDP Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, in the past, Canada was often cited as an example of a country with a balanced immigration system offering refuge to those fleeing from war, threats and suffering.

Now, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees is raising concerns about the Conservatives' policy on mandatory detention of refugees.

When will the Conservatives' stop attacking refugees and establish a fair and efficient system?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, the NDP is always attacking Canada's generosity.

The fact is that our country accepts one out of every ten refugees resettled globally. Canada accepts more resettled refugees per capita than any other developed country in the world.

This government is accepting 20% more resettled refugees and is also increasing funding for the assistance program by 20%. Canada is doing more than any other developed country to help and to protect refugees.

International Co-operationOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Eyking Liberal Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the OECD released a report on Canada's international aid program. The report raised concerns that Canada lacks a clear and consistent vision for development aid. This shows a total lack of leadership and direction from the very top.

The Prime Minister likes to lecture the world on how to handle its finances. When will the Prime Minister admit that he has no strategy for Canada's overseas development assistance and when will he fire the minister, who should have no confidence in the House?

International Co-operationOral Questions

3 p.m.

Durham Ontario

Conservative

Bev Oda ConservativeMinister of International Cooperation

Mr. Speaker, in fact, the report also said that Canada was a more concentrated donor than it was previously and thus a more effective one. It also praises Canada for its international aid programs. It untied its aid, which means there is 30% more food getting to the people who need it. It also recognized that we met our commitments. We doubled our international assistance and we doubled our commitment to Africa.

This means we are getting results. It means that 8,000 farmers are now receiving 3% more income for their families in Africa.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

3 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett Liberal St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, first nations and Métis served honourably during the War of 1812. Their invaluable role in that conflict should receive appropriate gratitude and celebration.

On the Walpole Island First Nation, there is a cairn containing the remains of Chief Tecumseh. The mortar is falling out from between the stones. There is no picture. There is no story of how he fought for Canada and died.

With all the government is spending to mark the War of 1812, what will it take for it to work with the chief and council to fix this?

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

3 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeMinister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Mr. Speaker, first, I agree with the member opposite that the House and our country are indeed very proud of those who served and fought in the War of 1812. It was the fight for Canada.

We have set aside a substantial amount of money to ensure that these kinds of markers of our past are shown due respect and are recognized. It is unfortunate that opposition parties have attacked our government for doing exactly what the member suggests we ought to be doing.

We are going across the country, looking for projects around the country, like this one, to ensure that those who served and fought in the fight for Canada, the War of 1812, get the respect they are indeed due.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Jasbir Sandhu NDP Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, as the Conservatives put the finishing on their irresponsible changes to employment insurance, I would like to remind Conservative members across the aisle about our youth, minorities, people with disabilities, temporary foreign workers and seasonal workers. These are all hard-working Canadians who will be hurt this summer by the changes to EI.

My question is simple. As the Conservatives head back to their ridings, how will they justify these harmful changes to their constituents?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

3 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey Ontario

Conservative

Kellie Leitch ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, the individuals who live in my riding of Simcoe—Grey are delighted with these changes.

Our government's top priority is economic growth and getting Canadians back to work. The government is making improvements to the employment insurance system to ensure a fair system that continues to meet the needs of Canadians and is responsive to local needs and local market demands. As we face unprecedented skills shortages across the country, it is critical that we work directly to help Canadians find the jobs they need.

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

3 p.m.

NDP

Réjean Genest NDP Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, the only plan they have is to lower all workers' wages. The Conservatives' botched reform of the employment insurance program is unacceptable. The Shefford tourism industry is worried about the consequences of the Conservatives' attacks on seasonal workers. These irresponsible measures will make it difficult to find qualified staff for the tourist season.

Why are the Conservatives attacking the businesses that drive the economic vitality of my region?

Employment InsuranceOral Questions

3 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey Ontario

Conservative

Kellie Leitch ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, in my riding of Simcoe—Grey, the people who are running seasonal industries are delighted with these changes, because it means they will have people to work in their local industries.

Our government's top priority is the economy. That is why, through economic action plan 2012 and previous plans, we have created 700,000 net new jobs in the country. We have done a great job creating jobs. I encourage the members opposite to support our plan to create jobs in our country.

Canadian ForcesOral Questions

3 p.m.

Conservative

Laurie Hawn Conservative Edmonton Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, the record of our government is proud and clear. We stand up tall for our troops.

After the decade of darkness, when the Liberals were in power, this government has taken unprecedented action at home and abroad to ensure that our troops can serve with dignity. This is especially true with reference to forces members who move to the public sector and their rightful claims to vacation leave entitlement.

Could the President of the Treasury Board outline for the House the changes that have been implemented so prior service of troops is honoured when they move to the public sector?

Canadian ForcesOral Questions

3 p.m.

Parry Sound—Muskoka Ontario

Conservative

Tony Clement ConservativePresident of the Treasury Board and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario

Mr. Speaker, first, let me honour the hon. member who has done such a great job in his advocacy role for the brave women and men in uniform who put their lives on the line for our country.

In recognition of this and following up our budget 2012, our economic action plan commitment, I am pleased to announce that the government has moved ahead with changes to recognize prior years of service of former members of the Canadian Forces who join the Public Service of Canada for the purposes of calculating vacation leave. Details are available at www.tbs-sct.gc.ca.

Our government will always stand by our women and men who have served their country in our military.

Foreign TakeoversOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Industry has extended the time for reviewing Glencore's foreign takeover of Viterra. This is a $7 billion deal involving Canada's biggest grain company.

Does the minister's review include an examination of Glencore's controversial past behaviour? Will a bond be posted to guarantee Glencore's promises about a Regina regional headquarters and $100 million in new investment? How will the government exactly prevent anti-competitive behaviour in the farm input supply business?

Foreign TakeoversOral Questions

June 20th, 2012 / 3:05 p.m.

Battlefords—Lloydminster Saskatchewan

Conservative

Gerry Ritz ConservativeMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, the Glencore takeover was overwhelmingly accepted by the Viterra shareholders. It has gone to industry. The member opposite, spending all those years in government, should know the protocol that is involved. It is exactly the same as it was when he was there.

As it comes to the competition side, it is the Competition Bureau that takes a separate look at it. We are looking forward to those results as well.

PensionsOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

NDP

Marc-André Morin NDP Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, by increasing the eligibility age for old age security, the Conservatives have launched a direct attack on our society's most vulnerable seniors.

The Conservatives will be stealing food from the mouths of thousands of people who have worked their entire lives, just when they need help the most. It is unacceptable to steal from seniors like this.

Why steal from seniors instead of helping them?

PensionsOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Simcoe—Grey Ontario

Conservative

Kellie Leitch ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and to the Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, as has been mentioned before in the House, seniors benefits will not be reduced. In order to maintain the sustainability of OAS, the age of eligibility will be gradually increased from 65 to 67, from 2023 to 2029.

We are focused on ensuring that social programs in our country are sustainable, unlike the opposition.

2012 Olympic and Paralympic GamesOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Conservative

Phil McColeman Conservative Brant, ON

Mr. Speaker, our government is proud to support Canada's athletes and all those who benefit from the Canadian sports system. We have also supported the hosting of national and international sporting events, including the Canada Games and the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.

Soon our athletes will travel to London to take on the world at the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Could the Minister of State for Sport please tell the House how our government is assisting our athletes as they train for these prestigious events?

2012 Olympic and Paralympic GamesOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

Bramalea—Gore—Malton Ontario

Conservative

Bal Gosal ConservativeMinister of State (Sport)

Mr. Speaker, I think I speak for everyone in the House when I say that Canada's athletes are a source of pride and inspiration for all Canadians across the country.

That is why we are proud to continue our record level support for the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic committees and the national sports organization, Own the Podium, so that our athletes can reach the podium at every opportunity.

I encourage all Canadians to join together this summer to support our athletes as they take on the world's best in London. Let's go, Canada.

InfrastructureOral Questions

3:05 p.m.

NDP

Pierre-Luc Dusseault NDP Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, in their most recent budget, the Conservatives have abandoned the regions.

My riding has a desperate need for infrastructure, particularly an operational regional airport, to help its economic development, create jobs and maintain existing jobs.

In April, when he visited Sherbrooke for a photo op, the Prime Minister himself acknowledged the importance of this project for our region. Yet, the Conservatives have remained silent since that time.

Is the Sherbrooke airport still an important infrastructure project for the Conservative government?