House of Commons Hansard #295 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was information.

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 Edmonton Centre.

[Members sang the national anthem]

Gun ControlStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

GPQ (ex-Bloc)

Rhéal Fortin GPQ (ex-Bloc) Rivière-du-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, Bill C-71 is a real feather in the government's cap. The Liberals found a way to disappoint both those who want to restrict access to firearms and those who want to make it easier.

In attempting to reconcile the irreconcilable to win votes, the government completely missed the point: what is the purpose of gun control? It is supposed to keep guns out of our neighbourhoods. Why then, is there not a word about assault rifles like the one used at the Quebec City mosque on January 29, 2017?

Gun control is also supposed to keep guns out of the wrong hands. Here again, there is not a word about people with serious mental illness accessing guns, not even the merest mention of conversations that need to happen with the provinces.

The government tried to sit on the fence, so it should come as no surprise that it is now sprawled on the ground.

Status of WomenStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Pam Damoff Liberal Oakville North—Burlington, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week we heard over and over again disconcerting things from Conservative political leaders across the country denying the facts and ignoring the real barriers faced by women in politics. Our government understands that women in politics face sexism, harassment, and other systemic barriers, and we are working to eliminate these factors.

That is why we are working with organizations like Equal Voice and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to find out why there are fewer female elected representatives than male.

We also announced $18 million in funding to enhance the participation of women, including indigenous women, as leaders in their communities.

We have introduced Bill C-65 to address harassment and sexual violence. Our government knows that we simply cannot move forward when half of us are held back.

VolunteerismStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Ted Falk Conservative Provencher, MB

Mr. Speaker, this past weekend, more than 2,000 volunteers from over 20 churches in Steinbach, Manitoba, got together to comb the streets, parks, and ditches to collect the garbage that had accumulated over the winter. This annual Pick Up 'n' Walk event was organized by local churches to help the city remain sparkling clean. This year, an astonishing 10 tonnes of garbage was collected. It is so encouraging to see the churches in our communities rally together for such a great event. It is no coincidence that Steinbach has been declared the cleanest city in North America.

Efforts like this one are an excellent example of the good work faith groups do in our communities, but this year, many groups that engage in activities like this have been rejected for Canada summer jobs funding simply for holding different beliefs than the Prime Minister's.

Thankfully, many are rallying behind these organizations and ensuring that they have the resources they need to continue the good work. I would like to commend all the volunteers for graciously giving their time for a job well done.

SeniorsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Geng Tan Liberal Don Valley North, ON

Mr. Speaker, imagine if Canadians who volunteer to help seniors could bank hours of credit, to be redeemed in kind upon their own retirements. In other words, young people and capable adults who provide care to seniors would bank the time and then exchange it for care when they themselves are seniors. This system would provide additional social care to Canada's seniors. It is a solution that would run on time, not money. This scheme would encourage more people to provide unpaid help to seniors in Canada. By registering, they would build up a care pension, claimable in the form of care during their own retirements.

In recent years, some countries, such as Switzerland, have experimented with time banking as part of their retirement plans. I encourage my fellow parliamentarians to support such a time-bank system in Canada.

Indigenous AffairsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Georgina Jolibois NDP Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River, SK

Mr. Speaker, today I want to recognize the great work being done by Green Arrow Healing in Beauval, Saskatchewan. The members of Green Arrow are trained counsellors and educators who bring indigenous ways of healing and support to the youth of northern Saskatchewan. In addition to counselling and detox services for at-risk youth, Green Arrow combines traditional and western healing methods to foster leadership and to connect people back with nature.

The successes of Green Arrow Healing really show how vital it is to have first nations and Métis people and culture integrated into our wellness programs. Many who leave the Green Arrow workshops feel a new sense of hope and are confident in their ability to grow and build the bonds of family and friendship. I very much look forward to working with Green Arrow Healing as their programs and mandate continue to grow over the coming years.

In the Soil Arts FestivalStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Chris Bittle Liberal St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, spring in downtown St. Catharines brings with it the In the Soil Arts Festival. This three-day festival brings together a wide range of Niagara artists, who provide an explosion of creativity and unique audience experiences. The festival nurtures the creation of new work, showcases talent, encourages innovation, and provides intimate and uncommon platforms for audiences to experience.

In the Soil is Niagara's homegrown arts festival that is working to make Niagara culturally distinct. This year, 2018, marks the festival's 10th anniversary, and I want to take this opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the incredible work of Annie Wilson, Deanna Lynn Jones, and all others in Niagara who have contributed to making “our little festival that could” an amazing success over the past decade.

In the Soil has been a labour of love and is an incredible celebration of the arts in Niagara. The festival planted its roots in downtown St. Catharines, and the community has grown alongside it over the past 10 years. Congratulations to the In the Soil team on a great decade of success.

Chamber of Commerce Awards of ExcellenceStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Jamie Schmale Conservative Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Bobcaygeon and Area Chamber of Commerce recently held its 2018 Awards of Excellence ceremony at the gorgeous Lakeview Arts Barn. I would like to congratulate all award nominees and recipients, including Andy Lummiss and Jessica O'Neill, for the Employee Achievement award; Bobcaygeon Eye Care, for the Business Achievement Award; Granny Bird Wool Shoppe, for the New Business Achievement Award; Happy Days Houseboats, for the Hospitality Award; Bobcaygeon Canada Day Committee, for the Not for Profit Achievement Award; Canada/US Walleye Tournament, for the Tourism Achievement Award; Sarah Quick, for the Creative Arts Achievement Award; and of course, Ruth Mclsaac, for the Citizen of the Year Award.

A special thanks to all the sponsors and staff, general manager Ruthann Wilson, the board of directors, and president Miriam Newton for organizing this spectacular event.

In keeping with the theme of a strong business community, I would also like to extend my congratulations to Kavtek and Percheron Plastic for winning the recent Bears' Lair Entrepreneurial Competition in Peterborough.

Saint-JeanStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Rioux Liberal Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, the vitality and development of our ridings depend entirely on the engagement of the people who live there.

Our entrepreneurs' determination and especially their perseverance are key drivers of economic activity. St-Jean Pizzeria is a perfect example. Congratulations to the Petrozza family and the many employees who, for 50 years now, have been contributing to the economic growth of Saint-Jean.

A young Italian immigrant from Calabria realized his dream in 1968 when he decided to set up shop in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu and share his culinary talents with us. Today we are celebrating this institution's many years of success bringing the flavours of Italy to our community. I join thousands of happy customers in sincerely thanking this distinguished Saint-Jean family.

Oxford Frozen FoodsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Casey Liberal Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, 2018 marks 50 years for Oxford Frozen Foods in Cumberland County, Nova Scotia. Begun in 1968 by John Bragg, it has grown from a 100-acre farm to a business that today processes 150 million pounds of wild blueberries every year. Oxford handles other products, but wild blueberries are its calling card, and today, Oxford exports Grade A fresh and frozen wild blueberries to over 30 countries from Nova Scotia.

Routinely recognized as one of the best managed companies in Canada, Oxford and the Bragg family are also generous supporters of our rural communities and economic development. They were quick to help support the refugee families when they came to Nova Scotia.

I thank John Bragg, David Hoffman, and the entire Oxford family for all they do for our community, and I congratulate them on their tremendous achievements.

Oxford wanted me to invite everyone to their celebration on July 28 in Oxford, Nova Scotia.

Mother's DayStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Larry Miller Conservative Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound, ON

Mr. Speaker, this Sunday is Mother's Day, and I would like to pay tribute to mothers everywhere. I lost my mother a year ago, and I still miss her dearly. We are all blessed with just one mother, and mine was the best, just as yours is, Mr. Speaker, I am sure, and as is every other member's mother.

Mothers are the glue in every family, the one we run to first at a very young age when we scrape a knee, and the first one we go to as adults when things are tough or we are having a bad day.

Today I say, “Thanks, Mom. You were the best.” I thank my wife, the mother of our three sons; and my daughters-in-law, who are the mothers of my grandchildren. Indeed, I thank all mothers across Canada for being who they are. This Sunday, they should sit back, put up their feet, and enjoy the day. They have earned it.

Happy Mother's Day.

Lions ClubStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Colin Fraser Liberal West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, on April 28, I was honoured to welcome Lions Club members from across Nova Scotia in my hometown of Yarmouth for their annual provincial convention.

Lions Clubs in Nova Scotia first began in 1945, when the first clubs were established in Halifax, Dartmouth, and Middleton. Seventy-three years later, Nova Scotia is now home to 69 Lions Clubs, including 12 in my riding of West Nova.

The many efforts of these clubs and their members in organizing fundraising activities and encouraging volunteerism makes all of our communities a much better place to live. Their motto, “We Serve”, perfectly captures the spirit of Lionism.

I thank the convention's co-chairs Fred Graham and Sandra Blake, and the entire organizing committee from the Yarmouth Lions Club for hosting such a fabulous event. I thank all Lions for their service and the amazing work they do each and every day in Nova Scotia, across Canada, and around the world.

Olympic and Paralympic Winter GamesStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Stéphane Lauzon Liberal Argenteuil—La Petite-Nation, QC

Mr. Speaker, today it is a day of excellence in Parliament. We are fortunate to welcome Team Canada athletes competing at the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games this year in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Together, they garnered an impressive 57 medals, never seen before for our Canadians. They are a source of inspiration for all Canadians.

Everyone who watched the games as closely as I did knows one thing: an athlete is an athlete is an athlete.

Whether these athletes reached the podium or not, whether they were Paralympian or Olympian, their courage in the face of adversity, the years of determination required, their hard work to achieve a goal are all a shining example for all Canadians, regardless of their gender, their sexual orientation, their origin, and what makes them unique.

I want to thank our athletes for inspiring us.

Go Canada, go.

Robert FeadStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

David Sweet Conservative Flamborough—Glanbrook, ON

Mr. Speaker, two days ago, we laid to rest Major Reverend Canon Robert Fead, who was tragically killed on his motorcycle.

Major Canon Fead faithfully served the Anglican Diocese of Canada for 25 years, but his work was never confined to the walls of the church. Among many other roles, Major Canon Fead was the beloved chaplain for the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.

Following the 2014 Ottawa terror attack, Major Canon Fead presided over the funeral of Corporal Nathan Cirillo. He said at the time “My job, in the midst of all that chaos and fear, was to bring some sense of hope.”

Major Canon Fead did just that every day of his life. Because of his dedication to the gospel of Christ and his unmitigated commitment to serve, he was able to bring that great hope and comfort to many, particularly the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Princess Louise's Regiment.

My thoughts and prayers are with his wife Veronica, mother Pat, his family and friends, and his regiment. He will be sorely missed. May the Major rest in peace.

Doors Open 2018Statements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Leona Alleslev Liberal Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill, ON

Mr. Speaker, this weekend, people throughout York Region will visit cultural sites all over our community and across Ontario, as they open their doors and welcome them to explore the stories inside at Doors Open events.

In my riding, doors will be open in Richmond Hill at the Hindu Temple, Thomas Boyton House, and St. Mary and St. Joseph Coptic Orthodox Church, and doors will be open in Aurora at the Farmer's Market, the Public Library, Victoria Hall, and the Aurora Cultural Centre.

Let us celebrate the diversity and rich cultural heritage that makes us who we are as Canadians. I encourage everyone in Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill and across York Region to get out and discover the vibrancy of our community and our country.

Join me on Saturday, May 12 in Aurora and Richmond Hill for Doors Open 2018.

Human RightsStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, this Friday, Canada will undergo its third universal periodic review at the United Nations. This is an important moment when Canada will be held accountable by other UN member states on our domestic human rights track record. Canada's human rights violations, including discrimination against indigenous peoples, violence against women, systemic racism, and poverty, will be discussed on the world stage.

The federal government is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Canada Health Act. The act requires universal coverage for all insured persons for all medically-necessary services.

Furthermore, the federal government provides direct health care for first nations, military personnel, and incarcerated individuals.

Canada can and must be willing to use the Canada Health Act to ensure safe and equal abortion access for all people in Canada. The government must do its duty and embrace a recommendation to use the Canada Health Act as a mechanism to ensure safe and equal access to abortion for all.

JusticeStatements By Members

May 9th, 2018 / 2:20 p.m.

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Conservative Niagara Falls, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to make Canadians aware of some very troubling changes the Liberals are proposing in Bill C-75.

The government is essentially watering down very serious criminal charges by adding a possible summary conviction as a crown option. This could result in a penalty as low as a fine for what was an indictable offence with a penalty of up to 10 years. These charges include abduction of a child under the age of 14, material benefit from trafficking, breach of prison, participation in a terrorist group or criminal organization, advocating genocide, arson for fraudulent purposes, and the list goes on.

This is the Liberal answer to the current backlog in the justice system, a crisis created by not appointing the adequate number of judges to the bench.

Canadians know this. When a perpetrator of a serious crime is set free with a mere fine, he or she has not paid the price for that crime.

I call upon the government to finally start putting victims first.

Canadian Indigenous Nurses AssociationStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Yvonne Jones Liberal Labrador, NL

Mr. Speaker, as we celebrate National Nursing Week, we acknowledge the tremendous, skilled and caring nurses across Canada, and thank them for their endless contributions to health care.

I would like to welcome the Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association to Parliament Hill, and acknowledge the significant work that it does to advance indigenous nursing, and improve the lives of indigenous people.

Through their association, nurses promote the development and practice of indigenous health and nursing to hundreds of communities and reserves in Canada. Through their work, they are providing unique and specialized care to indigenous people. They understand the specific needs of indigenous patients and the challenges that indigenous people often face in accessing and navigating the Canadian health care system.

I ask members to join me today in thanking the Canadian Indigenous Nurses Association, all of its employees and those they serve, and to thank all those hard-working and dedicated nurses across Canada who lift us up in our country with hope and health when we need it.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's carbon tax increases the price of everything. When businesses are forced to raise their prices, it becomes harder to do business. When they are forced to compete with business that do not have these costs, they become less competitive and that hurts the economy and kills jobs.

Why is the Prime Minister ignoring the economic cost of his carbon tax? Will he finally tell Canadians exactly how much this tax will cost the economy?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we saw that approach for 10 years under the Harper government, which made excuses for not taking action to protect the environment. By failing to protect the environment, the Conservatives also failed to meet their responsibility to create sustainable economic growth for the future. We know that by putting a price on carbon-based pollution and by working with communities across the country we can grow the economy while meeting our need to protect the environment for future generations.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, recently the Prime Minister was in British Columbia lecturing Canadians on their personal behaviour. In fact, he was expressing his joy at the high gas prices, saying it was “exactly what we want”.

We know that millionaires like the Prime Minister can afford to pay higher gas prices, but hard-working moms and dads do not have the luxury to pay thousands more in new taxes. Therefore, how high does the cost of gas have to get before people start behaving the way the Prime Minister wants them to?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the member opposite knows that I said no such thing. The Conservatives are continuing to try and create fear and division among Canadians as a way of justifying their continued desire to do nothing to reduce the impacts of climate change, to do nothing to protect the environment. That is what they did for 10 years under Stephen Harper and that is what they are continuing to do in their approach.

We on this side of the House agree with Canadians that it is time to protect the environment and grow the economy together. That is exactly what we are doing. The Conservatives do not even have a plan.

Democratic ReformOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, our plan will not involve raising taxes on hard-working middle-class Canadians.

The Prime Minister broke his promise of democratic reform when he was unable to rig the election system in the Liberals' favour. He then tried to fiddle with the parliamentary rules to weaken the opposition. When the Liberals have problems raising funds, their solution is to impose restrictions on their opponents who do not have the same problems.

Why is the Prime Minister imposing new rules on political parties and encouraging American-style super PACs that will allow foreign money to meddle in our elections?

Democratic ReformOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, on the contrary, our reforms of electoral financing and of the electoral system resulted in more transparency and more rules to limit the influence of money in our political process. We need to create opportunities for people to listen to and fully participate in debates without being influenced by money. That is precisely the type of reform we are bringing in. That is what Canadians expect and that is what we are doing.

Democratic ReformOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

That is not what the Liberals have done at all, Mr. Speaker.

Every time the Prime Minister does not get his own way, he responds by rigging the rules to benefit his own party. When he did not get the electoral system he wanted, he abandoned all plans for democratic reform. When the opposition parties proved too effective in the House of Commons, he tried to take all the tools away from parties that sat opposite from him. Now, instead developing policies that encourage more Canadians to donate to the Liberal Party, the Prime Minister is trying to rig the next election by imposing punitive rule changes on his opponents.

Why is the Prime Minister restricting the activities of political parties, but making it easier for U.S.-style super PACs to spend huge sums of money?