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House of Commons Hansard #128 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

EthicsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Waterloo Ontario

Liberal

Bardish Chagger LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister of Small Business and Tourism

Mr. Speaker, this government has had unprecedented levels of consultation with Canadians so that we can respond to the very real challenges Canadians are facing.

The member knows very well that when it comes to political financing, the rules are some of the most strict across this country. Even the Chief Electoral Officer has said so, and the member knows very well that the rules clearly state that only Canadians can donate to Canadian political parties.

We will continue to respond to the challenges Canadians are facing. We will continue to do the good work they expect us to do.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Dubé NDP Beloeil—Chambly, QC

Mr. Speaker, CSIS has backtracked on its promise to reveal to a Senate committee whether journalists were under surveillance. The government will only say that no journalists are currently under surveillance.

Why, then, is CSIS so reluctant to share any information about this? This implies that surveillance of journalists is still ongoing, while the government is doing nothing meaningful to protect freedom of the press.

Will the minister finally take this matter seriously and launch a public inquiry?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Regina—Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, on the very important issue of press freedom and the protection of journalistic sources, all existing safeguards that are in place now are being reviewed to make sure that they are strong and effective.

I have said publicly many times that we are open to any and all advice coming from journalists, the legal community, or others who may have submissions to make about how the law can be made more effective.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Hélène Laverdière NDP Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the United States has announced that it is cancelling certain arms deals with Saudi Arabia because of systemic and endemic problems related to the reported targeting of Yemeni civilians by that country.

Meanwhile, it seems that Canada is allowing the use of light armoured vehicles made in Canada in the conflict in Yemen.

Can the minister confirm this? Is he not concerned that Canada could become complicit in war crimes?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Laurent Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the government does not export the same kind of weapons to Saudi Arabia as the United States did. The weapons in that case were air to ground bombs. We condemn the repeated, senseless attacks in Yemen, including the recent horrific attack on a funeral home. These violations of international law and humanitarian law are tragic and unacceptable.

Obviously, we have denounced those actions repeatedly, and we are not part of the the Saudi coalition. We want Saudi Arabia to honour its international obligations.

TaxationOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Conservative Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, as families look to buy Christmas gifts, they are haunted by worry, worry about the record household debt that has now reached $1.67 for every dollar of household earnings, worry compounded by the new taxes the government promises on wages, on gasoline, on home heating and electricity, and maybe even on health and dental plans.

As we get closer to Christmas, when will the government realize that many families have nothing more to give?

TaxationOral Questions

December 14th, 2016 / 2:40 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Morneau LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, there have been some really important things that have happened this year. On January 1, taxes were lowered for middle-class Canadians. On March 22, we introduced a budget that increased the guaranteed income supplement for single seniors by 10%, $943. We also introduced the Canada child benefit, which is helping families with, on average, $2,300.

We also changed student grants so they get 50% more for lower-income and middle-income families.

It has been a year of important initiatives, and we are looking forward to doing more for middle-class Canadians in 2017.

TaxationOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Pierre Poilievre Conservative Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, by middle class, he apparently means the people who can afford to attend $1,500-a-plate fundraisers. That is why he cut taxes for people earning $200,000 a year. They got $800, but someone earning $45,000 got exactly zero.

The new $100 billion in debts that Liberals are adding is great news for the billionaire bond holders who will collect interest on it, but for the working class people who have to pay that interest through their taxes, it is a nightmare.

When will the finance minister realize that Canadians have their own debts and cannot afford to pay for his?

TaxationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Québec Québec

Liberal

Jean-Yves Duclos LiberalMinister of Families

Mr. Speaker, I am grateful for this opportunity to repeat that middle class families are our top priority. We have avoided sending cheques to families of millionaires, so we can send them to nine families out of ten, which means the families of six million children, with an average benefit of $600 per month, non-taxable. That is taking the families of 300,000 children out of poverty.

TaxationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Gérard Deltell Conservative Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal's greed keeps eating into the wallets of Canadian workers and it knows no bounds.

What is the Liberals' latest scheme? They want to tax health insurance and dental insurance, which is very bad news. What will that accomplish? This has existed in Quebec for a few years now. Does the minister know what happened? Unfortunately, 20% of Quebec's workers no longer have private dental and health insurance.

Does the minister want 2.6 million Canadians to lose their insurance?

TaxationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Morneau LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the numbers are clear. This was a good year in Canadian politics.

We started with a tax cut for the middle class. We also improved life for seniors by enhancing old age security. We also created the Canada child benefit, which helps nine out of ten families have more money. These are the measures we have taken. Next year, we will continue to help the middle class.

TaxationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Gérard Deltell Conservative Louis-Saint-Laurent, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is definitely not by taxing people's private insurance that they are going to achieve that goal.

In addition to taking money out of workers' wallets, the minister has nothing to put under the Christmas tree for business people, who are the creators of jobs and wealth. In the new year, they are going to have to deal with the Liberal tax on carbon, additional contributions to pension funds, the elimination of tax credits, and the refusal to lower business taxes. That is what our business people, our job creators, can expect.

As Christmas approaches, why is the minister acting like Scrooge towards our job creators?

TaxationOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Morneau LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we want to make investments for the future while we help the middle class, and that is exactly what we are doing.

We have made historic investments in our country's infrastructure, which will improve Canada's future growth.

Next year we will proceed with our program that will invest in the future of our children and grandchildren.

Public Services and ProcurementOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Anne Minh-Thu Quach NDP Salaberry—Suroît, QC

Mr. Speaker, over the past two months, I have been calling on the government to do something to help students who are still not getting paid as a result of problems with Phoenix.

Yesterday, we learned that nearly 1,700 student workers at Parks Canada have had problems with their pay. Students have a lot of expenses, particularly with the rising cost of tuition.

These young people finished working four months ago. They were not volunteers. When will the Minister of Public Services and Procurement be able to assure me that all of these students will get paid?

Public Services and ProcurementOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bonavista—Burin—Trinity Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Judy Foote LiberalMinister of Public Services and Procurement

Mr. Speaker, as I have said repeatedly, it is totally unacceptable for anyone to go without pay for work performed, certainly in the case of students. I can report today that there are three students who are still waiting for pay. We are working very hard on their cases in order to get them resolved as quickly as possible.

Public Services and ProcurementOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Niki Ashton NDP Churchill—Keewatinook Aski, MB

Mr. Speaker, it has been two months since the Phoenix deadline, and 10,000 cases have yet to be fixed, meaning thousands of Canadians are still waiting to get paid, yet we have learned that executives in charge of this fiasco are getting bonuses. Let us get this straight. Executives are getting performance bonuses for a program that does not work.

With the holidays around the corner, this adds insult to injury to the so many who are still waiting to get paid. Will the minister prove that her government takes this seriously and halt the bonuses until Phoenix is fixed?

Public Services and ProcurementOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bonavista—Burin—Trinity Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Judy Foote LiberalMinister of Public Services and Procurement

Mr. Speaker, there is no one more concerned about this issue than I am as the minister responsible. We are working very hard. We have put measures in place, including satellite offices. We have hired 250 additional people to deal with these issues. We are now dealing with really complex issues. In fact, the 10,000 cases that remain are issues that have been outstanding, some going back three years. We are doing everything we can to deal with the issue, and we will continue to do that.

In the interim, if there are any employees who are affected by this pay system, I encourage them to get in touch with us, and to make sure that they—

Public Services and ProcurementOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

The hon. member for Bay of Quinte.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Neil Ellis Liberal Bay of Quinte, ON

Mr. Speaker, after three governments, four prime ministers, and 14 years since the project began, I was proud that our government has successfully acquired fixed-wing search and rescue aircraft. These aircraft play a critical role, carrying out search and rescue operations to respond to Canadians in distress across our vast country of over 18 million square kilometres.

Can the Minister of Public Services and Procurement please inform the House what this announcement will mean for all Canadians?

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Bonavista—Burin—Trinity Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Judy Foote LiberalMinister of Public Services and Procurement

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for Bay of Quinte for his hard work.

Last week in Trenton, we announced the awarding of a contract to acquire a new fleet of 16 modern search and rescue aircraft. This announcement fulfills our commitment to ensure that men and women in uniform have the equipment they need to carry out the work expected of them.

This contract will create middle class jobs for Canadians throughout the country and generate growth for Canada's aerospace and defence sector, but more importantly, these aircraft will help our military save the lives of Canadians everyday.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals have refused to provide any details about the deployment of 600 Canadian troops to a dangerous African mission. Canadians are demanding the facts.

Yesterday, the defence minister broke his promise to provide Canadians with the information by the end of this year. He is now saying he is going to hide that information until next year. This is not like keeping our children's Christmas presents a surprise. The lives of our soldiers are on the line.

Will the Liberals finally start being transparent about their blatant political decision, and allow for a full debate and a vote before they deploy our troops to Mali?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Saint-Laurent Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, my colleague is completely right. This is a very serious decision. It must be taken very seriously and in a comprehensive way. Where the member is in contradiction with himself is by asking me to do that in the next 10 seconds that I am allowed in the House.

No, it will be done properly, in due time, with true transparency, and will show how much Canada will honour its commitment for peace.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Pierre Paul-Hus Conservative Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister is not answering the question, so I will ask it another way.

Before the government decides to deploy any troops, as the Liberals are going to do with the mission in Africa, the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence is asking it to inform the House of the size of the mission, its goals, the risks involved, the costs, and the rules of engagement, and to obtain the support of all parties. The Senate is making this recommendation based on the Dutch model, which focuses on transparency and reaching a consensus.

Will the Minister of National Defence heed this advice and provide the House with all the facts so that we can hold an informed debate, or will he hide the truth from Canadians?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Saint-Laurent Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, that is the same question so I will give the same answer. It is very important that the Government of Canada be open and transparent about this fundamental decision to send our troops to support the cause of peace, as they always have. Canada is one of the few countries in the world that has never sent its troops abroad for reasons other than to protect democracy, peace, and justice. That is what we will do, and we will provide all the information to Canadians, because they have a right to know what is happening.

National DefenceOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

John Brassard Conservative Barrie—Innisfil, ON

Mr. Speaker, Australia, the United States, and the U.K. have banned the use of mefloquine, the anti-malarial drug, by members of their armed forces. Last week, we learned Germany will no longer be administering the drug to their armed forces. This decision puts the Canadian Armed Forces one step behind our NATO and European allies. The drug has a toxic side effect, and leads to aggression and suicide. The defence minister continues to defend the use of mefloquine.

Why can he not see that our allies have acted to protect their forces from mefloquine and do the same to protect Canadian troops?