House of Commons Hansard #259 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-50.

Topics

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

It being Wednesday, we will now have the singing of the national anthem, led by the hon. member for Windsor West.

[Members sang the national anthem]

Trans-Pacific PartnershipStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Simon Marcil Bloc Mirabel, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal Party loves to go on and on about how it is such a staunch defender of supply management, but it had no problem leaving our dairy producers out in the cold in the trade agreement with Europe. It had no problem leaving our producers high and dry with a makeshift, inadequate compensation plan.

With the new trans-Pacific partnership, the Liberals are once again turning their backs on our producers by breaking their promise not to compromise on supply management.

The Bloc Québécois strongly condemns the supply management concessions in the TPP. We also condemn the Liberals' carelessness as they rush to finalize agreements but take their sweet time compensating the people who get shortchanged.

In 2015, they said they were re-evaluating the TPP compensation plan. Now they have finished re-evaluating it and are holding consultations.

We do not need never-ending consultations to know that Quebec producers are once again being taken for a ride.

Young Women in Energy AwardsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Liberal Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Mr. Speaker, Young Women in Energy is an organization founded to champion the interests of young women working in the energy sector.

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Maude Ramsay, one of an impressive group of 2017 Young Women in Energy award winners. As senior supervisor for environment and regulatory affairs at Devon Canada, Maude leads a multidisciplinary team responsible for air, water, land, and regulatory management. She and her team pursue new and innovative approaches to monitoring and improving environmental performance at her company, including in the areas of carbon reduction, wetland restoration, and the protection of water quality.

Maude was nominated for her role as a mentor who actively seeks to develop her employees and to provide them with opportunities for growth.

Why am I making specific mention of Maude among this year's award winners? In the spirit of full disclosure, Maude is my sister-in-law, and needless to say, our family is extremely proud of her.

TaxationStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Kellie Leitch Conservative Simcoe—Grey, ON

Mr. Speaker, childhood obesity continues to be a major health concern for Canadian kids. Report after report uses language like “epidemic” when describing the problem. Healthy eating is important, but physical activity is as well. Health Canada's own website even says so. Kids need to be active.

For many hard-working families, the cost of putting a child in sports is a challenge. In 2006, I was appointed chair of the expert panel on the children's fitness tax credit to help offset the cost of putting kids in activities. The Conservative government implemented it. After 2011, the credit became a subsidy.

Our trust fund Prime Minister, though, campaigned on a pledge to help middle-class families. As soon as he took power, he instructed his trust fund finance minister to cut the one program that was helping kids get active.

Rich Liberals may not have a problem paying these costs for their kids, but many Canadians do. Will the government bring back excellent initiatives like the children's fitness tax credit so that kids can be active and healthy?

Royal Canadian NavyStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Liberal Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, in mid-December I and three other MPs were fortunate to participate in the Canadian leaders at sea program through the Department of Defence.

Upon boarding the submarine HMCS Windsor and sailing out of Halifax, the Windsor submerged in the Atlantic, and we experienced life on a submarine under the sea. Remarkable is how I would describe the crew as they avoided detection from surface vessels and helicopters and performed various other military exercises.

After surfacing and being transferred to the frigate HMCS Toronto, we enjoyed some of that famous navy food, defended against mock night boarders, and had to be belted into our bunks to prevent being tossed onto the floor. On the Toronto we participated in and observed fire drills, the prevention of boarders, mock damage, electronic and air attacks, and general surveillance.

The highlight was getting to know the men and women on board and their expertise. There is no doubt that we are in good hands with our navy. We thank them for their dedication.

Lac-MéganticStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Pierre-Luc Dusseault NDP Sherbrooke, QC

Mr. Speaker, the end of the Lac-Mégantic disaster trial closes a sad, unfortunate, and painful chapter in history that Quebecers and Canadians will never forget.

Although an important page has been turned in the justice system, there is still a great deal of work to be done to ease the psychological pain of Lac-Mégantic residents. A good start would be to remove the constant source of anxiety that passes through downtown Lac-Mégantic on a daily basis.

Unfortunately, the end of this chapter also brings to light the fact that someone else should have been among those held responsible for this terrible accident: the Government of Canada. Deregulation, self-regulation, underfunding of inspection activities, general neglect, blind faith in private companies, and exemptions granted to carriers known to be negligent all contributed to this tragedy.

The government got off easy, but I hope that it has learned an important lesson from this event and will never again turn a blind eye to the dangerous and negligent practices of private companies that value profit above safety.

Canada 150 Citizenship AwardsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Nick Whalen Liberal St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, to conclude Canada 150 celebrations in St. John's East, I hosted a Canada 150 citizenship ceremony. Based on nominations from the towns in my riding as well as from constituents, we nominated and recognized 20 groups and citizens who have made exceptional contributions to northeast Avalon.

The winners had to demonstrate qualities associated with one of the major themes of Canada 150, namely diversity and inclusion, reconciliation with indigenous peoples, the environment, and youth.

Please join me again in congratulating Susan Arns, Nora Boone, Jananne Dawe, Christopher Dredge, Geoff Eaton, Dr. Brett Favaro, Dr. Andrew Furey, Dr. Joel Heath, Linda Hickey, Gerry Marshall, Marion McCarthy, Michael O'Keefe, Patrick O'Rourke, Daniel Pottle, William Parsons, Josh Smee, Bruce Tricco, Sterling Willis, Bradley, Rachel and Julianne Moss, and the medical professionals at the Refugee Health Clinic. Their achievements will be detailed in my next householder.

Congratulations.

Bob MorrowStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

David Sweet Conservative Flamborough—Glanbrook, ON

Mr. Speaker our nation and my city, Hamilton, Ontario, lost a statesman and a leader this week with the passing of our longest serving mayor, Mr. Robert Morrow. He was immediately hailed as a kind-hearted man, and that he most certainly was. As Hamiltonians have recounted their stories and memories, including my parliamentary colleagues, it is clear that Bob Morrow was an extraordinarily selfless person in so many ways. He was also a relentless promoter of Hamilton. That is what I want to focus on in the celebration of his life.

A strong proponent of revitalizing Hamilton's waterfront, Mayor Morrow famously plunged into the Hamilton Harbour for a swim on a media dare to prove that the water was clean enough. Never missing a single opportunity to boost Hamilton, he often travelled back from his vacation cottage in Muskoka to attend a store opening or a community event, and then he would drive back all night. As a citizenship judge in the last decade, he welcomed thousands of new Canadians to the city he loved so much.

Bob Morrow was one of the most truly honourable people I have had the privilege of knowing. Bob is and will be sorely missed by all. Rest in peace.

East Coast GreenwayStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Karen Ludwig Liberal New Brunswick Southwest, NB

Mr. Speaker, I want to take this opportunity to talk about an amazing new project in New Brunswick Southwest. The East Coast Greenway will soon come to life, creating the longest international trail in the world. This trail will travel from Key West, Florida, all the way to the Trans Canada Trail in Saint John, totalling over 4,800 kilometres of pristine trail.

New Brunswick is a province of adventure, and now hikers, cyclists, and explorers can come and see our beautiful province and help contribute to our booming tourism industry, which already employs 42,000 people and contributes $520 million to our GDP.

New Brunswick truly has something for everyone. I would like to invite all members in the House and Canadians from coast to coast to coast to come and experience our beautiful new trail. They never know where the trail may lead them.

2018 Winter Olympics and ParalympicsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Fonseca Liberal Mississauga East—Cooksville, ON

Mr. Speaker, with hours to go until the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games, I can assure the House and all Canadians, without hesitation, that our Canadian Olympic and Paralympic teams are ready for the upcoming games in Pyeongchang.

Our government is working with the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committees, the national sports organizations, and our valued partners, such as Own the Podium and the Coaching Association of Canada, to support our athletes and coaches as they push for the podium against the world's best.

Team Canada plans to build on its previous successes and to contend for the peak positions with the planet's finest athletes. I want to encourage all Canadians, the team behind the team, to make sure that our athletes feel our collective support. As a former Olympian, I can assure members that the feeling of having a whole country behind them makes a difference.

Canadian athletes do their best. We are already proud of them. Go Canada Go.

British Home ChildrenStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Guy Lauzon Conservative Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, ON

This evening, hon. members of the House will have the opportunity to vote on my private member's Motion No. 133, which aims to establish a British home child day in Canada, to be celebrated yearly on September 28.

Until recent years, very few Canadians knew about the British home children. Their stories of hardship, courage, determination, and perseverance are not part of Canadian history books. This needs to change.

Eleanor McGrath, a constituent of mine, has released a wonderful documentary called Forgotten. I encourage everyone to watch it on TVO this coming February 22, at 9 p.m.

We owe a great deal to these children for their contributions to our country. So far, we have been failing them. I encourage all members to make an effort to learn more about the story of the British home children, to share that knowledge with their constituents, and to do all they can to ensure that this chapter of their collective story is never forgotten.

Armand-Frappier MuseumStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Eva Nassif Liberal Vimy, QC

Mr. Speaker, on January 22, we announced that the government was investing money in relocating the Armand-Frappier Museum, Biosciences Interpretation Centre, to the Cosmodôme site. The $2.7 million investment will not only help the museum expand and welcome more visitors, but it will also help update the exhibits, acquire new ones, and install high-tech equipment.

I am proud that our government supports this project in Laval and that it is engaging in joint efforts to raise the profile of culture and science in our society.

I invite everyone to join me in Laval 2020, with my colleagues and museum staff, for the reopening of the Armand-Frappier Museum, Biosciences Interpretation Centre, at the Cosmodôme site.

Mona PiperStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Liberal Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, for 43 years, Mona Piper, Toronto's longest-serving school crossing guard, helped generations of students cross the road on their way to and from Maurice Cody Junior Public School. Mona loved the children she helped. She knew them all by name. Even after she retired last September, she would sit on her front porch at the corner of Cleveland Street and Millwood Road to wave at them as they made their way to school.

On January 31, Mona died at the age of 88. She will be remembered for her infectious smile, loving personality, words of encouragement, and quick wit.

Mona's memory and her contribution to our community will live on. Just a few blocks from where she lived, construction has begun on a new children's park. Thanks to Councillor Josh Matlow, when it opens in the spring, a new generation of children in Don Valley West will begin to play at the Mona Piper playground.

Please join me and the member for Toronto—St. Paul's in recognizing Mona's legacy, more than four decades of kindness and service to the community and the children she loved.

Canada Summer Jobs ProgramStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Garnett Genuis Conservative Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, AB

Mr. Speaker, all of us are hearing the outrage of our constituents about the Liberal summer jobs values test attestation. We have heard from many groups in Liberal-held ridings that are past recipients, groups that have received money from their Liberal MPs to feed the homeless, help refugees, and support kids, but will now be denied because of this values test.

Even municipalities are impacted. One letter I read said:

For [years] our Town has hired students under the student employee program. This year, that will not take place because of the new application requirements. Our Council in good faith is not able to comply.

Another letter reads:

I am a Pastor at a local church here in Brampton, and it is very disheartening knowing that we will not be getting the chance to receive summer students this summer based on the new policy....

I read in an article one of the liberals said “just check the stupid box”. My response is that if it's just a stupid little box, then why is it there?

This values test attestation is wrong, un-Canadian, and a violation of the charter. Canadians can count on the Conservatives to oppose this values test every step of the way.

Taiwan EarthquakeStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal Humber River—Black Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, like many others, I was shocked to learn of the horrific earthquake that struck the east coast of Taiwan yesterday, leaving at least four people dead and several hundred injured. Armed forces and government agencies are responding as quickly as possible in the hopes of assisting those in need.

As a Canadian parliamentarian representing a city with a large and active Taiwanese population, and as the chair of the Canada-Taiwan Friendship Group, I, like many others, have had the opportunity to travel to Taiwan and have made many friends who call Taiwan home.

May our hopes and prayers be with them all at this terrible time and in this disaster.

Doris NoletStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

NDP

Christine Moore NDP Abitibi—Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, a number of brave women are working hard every day across the country to break the glass ceiling in male-dominated fields that still, in 2018, are not welcoming to women.

Fortunately, we have determined and inspiring women like Doris Nolet, of Normétal. She is barely five feet tall, and she knew she wanted to be a firefighter back in 1986. She had to wait until 2004 to be accepted to her city's fire department.

Today, thanks to her determination and perseverance, Doris Nolet is the new fire chief of the 21 volunteer firefighters in Normétal. This is a source of pride and quite an achievement, if you consider that fewer than 3% of Canadian firefighters are women.

Volunteer firefighters are needed to keep our communities safe, and the staffing shortage could be resolved in part by bringing in female firefighters and better legislative protection for all of these volunteers.

Congratulations and thank you, Doris, for showing young girls that they can become firefighters and fire chiefs.

Youth AchievementsStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Alex Nuttall Conservative Barrie—Springwater—Oro-Medonte, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is my honour to stand today and speak about our country's greatest resource, our youth. I, too, was young when I got into politics as a student mayor, and still a youth when I was first elected to Barrie City Council at the age of 21. People would say, “You're going to be a great leader one day.” That is the biggest lie that we tell our young people.

They are leading us to be more environmentally conscious, to protect our lakes, streams, and rivers. They are leading us to ensure competition in the marketplace with apps like Lyft and Uber, which are disrupting tired, old government systems. They are shaping new technologies and creating new jobs. Their social ideals are shown by people like Zach from Barrie, who ran all the way to Ottawa, raising awareness of youth mental health. They are clean from the notions of trading ideals for access and insulated from the worst of our politics.

I would like to recognize our young people across this country, who are vehicles of change and leaders, not a year from now, not a decade from now, not a lifetime from now, but today.

Brock University PresidentStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Chris Bittle Liberal St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, as we celebrate Black History Month, we take the time to highlight the important contributions of black Canadian leaders in our communities. I would like to take a moment to highlight a leader in Niagara, Dr. Gervan Fearon.

In St. Catharines, Brock University is a fundamental part of our community. The university recently appointed Dr. Fearon as its sixth president and vice-chancellor. He is also the university's very first black Canadian president. In fact, he became the very first black Canadian to become a university president in 2014, when he was named president and vice-chancellor of Brandon University. Dr. Fearon has distinguished himself during his career as a teacher, researcher, and public servant.

I would like to recognize Dr. Fearon for his leadership and for forging a new path, including contributing to the building of outstanding post-secondary institutions, businesses, and communities throughout Canada.

I have enjoyed my conversations with Dr. Fearon, and I am looking forward to seeing him implement his vision for Brock University, which I know will have a positive impact beyond the campus. He is a role model for all Canadians. I am proud to celebrate his contributions to St. Catharines and Canada.

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals have shamefully opened a new front in their legal battle with our veterans. This time, the Prime Minister claims that it is not up to him to provide a safe, harassment-free workplace in the Canadian Armed Forces or to develop polices to prevent sexual harassment or sexual assault.

Will the Prime Minister explain why he is so determined to keep attacking our veterans, but lets known terrorists off the hook with a $10-million cheque?

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

February 7th, 2018 / 2:20 p.m.

Vancouver South B.C.

Liberal

Harjit S. Sajjan LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear on this matter. Inappropriate sexual behaviour of any kind is completely unacceptable and will not be tolerated. Our government has been very clear that we are committed to a harassment-free workplace for all Canadians. We have recently tabled Bill C-65, and we have a proven track record on this matter.

Though I cannot speak to the specifics of this case, as a government we have made our approach clear on issues like these, and we will continue along this path.

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I can speak to the specifics of this case. The minister specifically instructed his lawyers to argue that the armed forces do not have a duty to provide women a safe place to work. That is shameful, and they have also specifically excluded the armed forces from their legislation.

Why does the Prime Minister say one thing when it is all about symbolism, but when it is about the hard work of actually implementing these things, he is missing in action?

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Vancouver South B.C.

Liberal

Harjit S. Sajjan LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, as I stated, I cannot speak to the specifics of this case, but we are committed to making sure that we have a harassment-free workplace in the Canadian Armed Forces. We encourage all members to come forward. With our new defence policy, we are investing in our people to make sure we get this job done.

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal government is arguing in court that it has no duty to provide a safe place for women to work in the armed forces. That is shameful, and it flies in the face of every phony statement the Prime Minister has ever said on this issue.

The Prime Minister cannot blame a government lawyer. The Prime Minister actually instituted a cabinet committee to oversee litigation, to put a political screen on all these types of arguments. Who sits on that committee? It is the Minister of Justice. What does the Minister of Justice think about her government's lawyers arguing this in court?

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Vancouver South B.C.

Liberal

Harjit S. Sajjan LiberalMinister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, our track record on this matter has been very clear since the time we formed government. Since September 2015, 55 members have been released due to inappropriate sexual behaviour. We are committed to making sure that we have a harassment-free workplace within the Canadian Armed Forces, and Operation Honour is going to get that job done.

Canadian Armed ForcesOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Conservative

Lisa Raitt Conservative Milton, ON

Mr. Speaker, words do not lie, and doublespeak is very clear in the following case. The Minister of Defence, on his own website, pledges that the “Canadian Armed Forces is fully committed to providing a workplace free from harassment and discrimination”, yet the lawyers for the government said that it is not their job to “care to individual members within the CAF to provide a safe and harassment-free work environment”. Which is it? Do they stand with women in the forces, or do they not?