Mr. Speaker, in response, it is with my regret that the parliamentary secretary continues the misinformation. At no point in time did members of our party ever say they were opposed to improved food safety legislation and we, the official opposition, voted en masse for the bill. What was regrettable was that the Conservatives refused to accept the proposed amendments, which would have further strengthened and modernized the food safety legislation toward effective enforcement.
It is disappointing and unlike previous Conservative governments. For example, when the Mulroney government in the mid-1980s tabled innovative Canadian environmental protection legislation, it simultaneously tabled an enforcement compliance policy. It was a historic moment and the statement was made that a law is of no value and is vacuous unless there is effective enforcement compliance.
We have continued to ask: What is the problem? Why would the Conservatives not open up to the public, inspectors and food safety workers to review the enforcement compliance regime to make sure it is as sound as they say?
Dr. Weatherill's report raised serious concerns with the enforcement regime. However, the government has not acted on that report.
We remain hopeful that the government will finally admit that the big problem was with the enforcement of the regime. To ensure that we do not have future problems, let us open it up, take a look and take a look at some of the amendments we have proposed, so that it is a modern, effective enforcement regime.