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House of Commons Hansard #133 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was jordan.

Topics

RCMPOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, the RCMP is one of this country's greatest institutions, but it is an institution in crisis. Last week, the commissioner appealed directly to Canadians for help to restore the lustre of the force and the minister was forced to recognize the need for change. However, there are victims here. These victims want, and expect, meaningful action from the government.

What is the minister going to do about the many victims who were forced to abandon their career in the RCMP, as a result of sexual harassment?

RCMPOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, I have been discussing this issue with the commissioner from the time that he was appointed. I am very pleased with the very proactive and public way in which the commissioner has voiced his concerns about reform inside the RCMP.

We are going to be bringing in new legislation. I hope, for once, that that member and her party will support legislation that will enhance the reputation of the RCMP and gain credibility among the people of Canada.

CensusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, people can still be thrown in jail if they do not fill out the census. I raise this because of the chorus of righteous indignation that came from that side of the House two years ago about this matter. It is still on the books. People can be thrown in jail if they do not fill out the short form census or the agriculture census.

Recently a dyslexic man in Pembroke was visited by the police and told he was being arrested because he did not fill out his census. His wife who is learning-disabled was also charged. Is there no end to the hypocrisy of the House?

CensusOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of State (Small Business and Tourism)

Mr. Speaker, the government has been completely transparent with Canadians.

I would remind my hon. colleague that Statistics Canada has released data from the recent census. Canadians voluntarily completed the census in greater numbers this time than in the past, because we decided to help Statistics Canada get in touch with Canadians and encourage them to complete the form. It has been very successful.

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Liberal Cardigan, PE

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans continues to gut the Fisheries Act, take away from the fishers and put Canadians at risk on the sea.

Now, he sees fit to take DFO jobs from St. John's and five other cities, and put them in his own landlocked riding. This is unacceptable. The minister thinks he can score political points by taking fisheries jobs away from where they are truly needed. Will the minister stop trying to save his own skin by robbing from our Canadian coastal communities?

Fisheries and OceansOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Pitt Meadows—Maple Ridge—Mission B.C.

Conservative

Randy Kamp ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, I think my colleague has his facts wrong.

Across the country we have six centres where we primarily do accounting and procurement. We are moving those into one centre for greater efficiencies. I think taxpayers expect us to do that. We will be able to operate in a more efficient way.

International TradeOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Don Davies NDP Vancouver Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, drug costs are one of the fastest rising expenses in our health care system, yet, despite this fact, the government is ready to surrender more patent protection to pharmaceutical companies in its negotiations for the comprehensive economic and trade agreement with Europe.

These measures would have Canadians pay an estimated $2.8 billion more per year for their medication. Will the Minister of International Trade confirm that he has given negotiators a mandate for patent extensions in the negotiations for CETA?

International TradeOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

South Shore—St. Margaret's Nova Scotia

Conservative

Gerald Keddy ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is simply incorrect. Our government has always sought to strike a balance between promoting innovation and job creation, and ensuring that Canadians continue to have access to the affordable drugs that they need.

Our government continues to consult with the provinces and the territories to ensure that the best interests of Canadians are reflected in the Canada-EU trade negotiations.

International TradeOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Djaouida Sellah NDP Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, the provinces would not have written to Ottawa if the situation were not urgent. With the cost of prescription drugs rising, it seems that the government has no problem passing on an even higher bill. That makes no sense.

If the Conservatives give in to Europe's demands and allow patent extensions, will they at least compensate the provinces for the rising cost of drugs?

International TradeOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

South Shore—St. Margaret's Nova Scotia

Conservative

Gerald Keddy ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade

Mr. Speaker, I believe that the hon. member knows that the prices charged for patent medicine sold in Canada are regulated by the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board.

This will not change under a free trade agreement with the European Union. Claims to the contrary are simply foolish.

EmploymentOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Dan Harris NDP Scarborough Southwest, ON

Mr. Speaker, over the weekend, General Motors announced it would be closing the flex-line assembly plant in Oshawa. Two thousand people will be thrown out of work. That is 2,000 family-supporting jobs gone and 1,000 more in spinoff jobs gone. With this announcement, Canada's manufacturing industry suffers yet another major blow. Where is the Conservatives' plan for protecting the manufacturing sector and for protecting Canadian jobs?

EmploymentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of State (Small Business and Tourism)

Mr. Speaker, our latest budget proves that we care about the well-being of Canadians and the Canadian economy.

With respect to the manufacturing industry, it is important to note that, over the past few years, we have reduced its taxes. That is important to the industry. We want business people, manufacturers and those who create jobs to have more money in their pockets so that they can help create wealth in Canada. We introduced tax credits and the 50% straight line depreciation on machinery and supplies.

I could list all of the positive measures this government has introduced, but I would run out of time.

EmploymentOral Questions

June 4th, 2012 / 2:45 p.m.

NDP

Dan Harris NDP Scarborough Southwest, ON

Mr. Speaker, I could name a few too: Electro-Motive Diesel, Caterpillar, John Deer and now GM yet again. We are talking about family-supporting jobs.

The Minister of Finance said, “Automotive engineers, assembly workers and parts manufacturers are the foundation of many communities like my riding of Whitby—Oshawa”. Has the minister given up on his riding?

Since the government took power, the manufacturing sector has collapsed. Six hundred thousand manufacturing jobs are gone. Why has the government abandoned Canadian manufacturing?

EmploymentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of State (Small Business and Tourism)

Mr. Speaker, we all know that the NDP's policies for more spending and higher taxes will not help Canada's manufacturing sector. Driving Canadians further into debt, from one credit card to the other, will not create wealth in Canada.

Thanks to our economic action plan, over 600,000 jobs have been created in Canada. That is a fact. Our policies are realistic and practical for business people. The opposition's policies would kill jobs instead of creating them.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Leon Benoit Conservative Vegreville—Wainwright, AB

Mr. Speaker, a number of environmental groups have organized today to protest our government's plan for responsible resource development. Sadly, the opposition parties have joined in this anti-development chorus and have become a part of this misinformation campaign. Of course we know that recently the Leader of the Opposition referred to our resource sector as a disease. Today all 10 provincial ministers reinforce for Canadians the economic benefits and the jobs that will come from developing our immense natural resources in a responsible fashion.

Could the Minister of Natural Resources update this House on this important issue?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario

Conservative

Joe Oliver ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, contrary to what the opposition parties claim, bringing our regulatory system into the 21st century will strengthen environmental protection rather than gut it, will generate significant jobs and economic growth rather than hollow out our economy, and will provide prosperity and security for Canadians for future generations. It is not an either/or proposition, jobs versus the environment. The direction our government is taking is clear: to secure prosperity for Canadians while strengthening environmental protection. That is exactly what Bill C-38 would do.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, the horrible remnants of cluster munitions take a devastating toll long after conflicts have ended. Twenty-five per cent of casualties are children. That is why we must ban cluster munitions. However, instead of implementing the international ban, the Conservatives have proposed legislation to undermine it. They would legalize exemptions that in the U.K. would put people in prison. A former Australian prime minister is calling the government's approach “regressive”.

Why is the government failing on such an important piece of legislation?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, our legislation fully implements Canada's commitment to the convention and it is in line with our key allies including Australia and the United Kingdom. Canadian Forces will make its policy to prohibit its members from using cluster munitions, including our members serving on exchange within allied armed forces. This legislation would preserve Canada's ability to work alongside our allies.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière NDP Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, this is not the time for rhetoric like that.

Former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser said, “It is a pity the current Canadian government, in relation to cluster munitions, does not provide any real lead to the world. Its approach is timid, inadequate and regressive.”

Is that how the minister wants other countries to see Canada? When will he change tack and show some leadership?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, our government will in no way compromise the ability of the men and women of the Canadian Forces to do their job and to do what we ask of them in the interest of national security and defence.

As I stated, our legislation fully implements Canada's commitment to the convention, and is in line with key allies', including Australia and the United Kingdom.

ImmigrationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Sadia Groguhé NDP Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, last Friday the United Nations committee against torture expressed serious concern with several clauses of the Conservatives' Bill C-31.

The UN committee recommended that refugees only be detained as a last resort and that all refugees be entitled to a fair and equitable appeal process.

Will the Conservatives take these concerns into account and revise this ill-conceived bill, at last?

ImmigrationOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary Southeast Alberta

Conservative

Jason Kenney ConservativeMinister of Citizenship

Mr. Speaker, the use of detention in immigration matters is a perfectly ordinary tool in all immigration and refugee asylum systems in the developed world, in all liberal democracies. We have created measures in Bill C-31 to ensure that Canada respects its obligations to protect refugees—meaning real victims of persecution. We want to stop those who are not real refugees from abusing our generosity.

Ours is a very balanced approach that thoroughly respects our legal and moral obligations toward refugees.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Wayne Marston NDP Hamilton East—Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, by dismissing the concerns of the United Nations, we are adding to the way our international reputation is collapsing.

The United Nations Committee Against Torture also has serious concerns about the way the Conservative government expressed willingness to use information obtained under torture, in direct violation of international law.

The committee also took Canada to task for its reluctance to protect the rights of Canadians, our own citizens, detained abroad.

Instead of attacking the United Nations, will the minister take action on these very serious recommendations?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Calgary East Alberta

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Canada is a world leader in the promotion and protection of human rights. This is a major thrust of our principled foreign policy.

Our government remains committed to ensuring that the rights of citizens are continually protected from those who have committed crimes.

Torture is abhorrent and can never be tolerated. It is contrary to international law and to Canadian values.

EmploymentOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Frank Valeriote Liberal Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, every year more than 24,000 migrant workers return to Canada to help plant and harvest. They pay income tax and contribute to EI.

Despite their investment made in migrant workers, farmers are now told they will have to hire local workers who, in most cases, are being forced to take a job that does not match their own requirements.

While the minister did not answer when I asked about vital infrastructure cuts to the rural secretariat, perhaps she would like to try to explain why farmers in the Atlantic provinces or here in Ontario in areas like the Holland Marsh are no longer able to hire the skilled workers they truly need.