House of Commons Hansard #379 of the 42nd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was kingshants.

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 Courtenay—Alberni.

[Members sang the national anthem]

Official LanguagesStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Marilène Gill Bloc Manicouagan, QC

Mr. Speaker, these are dark days for French in Ottawa.

Yesterday, the Conservatives tried to seduce Quebec with their single tax return motion, but the Conservative member for Mégantic—L'Érable really put his foot in it when he went after the Minister of National Revenue for being francophone. Neither the minister nor Quebeckers need to apologize for speaking French. We speak French and, unlike the Conservatives, we are proud to speak French.

Ontario's Conservative premier said no to a francophone university. New Brunswick's Conservative premier said no to the Jeux de la Francophonie. The Liberals are not even willing to engage in a debate about whether adequate knowledge of French should be a requirement for immigrants residing in Quebec to be granted citizenship. The minister of Liberal heritage even accused us of being racist. The Liberals also cry foul when we say that federally regulated workers in Quebec should be subject to the Charter of the French Language.

That is what it has come to. These are dark days for French in Ottawa.

Albert SanterreStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Paradis Liberal Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, on February 3, we lost a man who dedicated 40 years of his life to municipal politics.

Albert Santerre was the longest-serving mayor in Brome—Missisquoi. He was in his ninth term as mayor of Saint-Ignace-de-Stanbridge, a position he held for a total of 30 years. Albert was also the deputy reeve of the Brome-Missisquoi RCM from 2005 to 2009 and from 2012 to 2015. He died of cancer on Sunday morning at Maisonneuve-Rosemont hospital.

Albert was a genuine and committed man who knew a lot of people and managed to advance some important issues. I want to thank him for everything he did for Brome—Missisquoi and offer my sincere condolences to his family, his friends and his colleagues. We have just lost a dear friend.

Congenital Heart DiseaseStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Marilyn Gladu Conservative Sarnia—Lambton, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to acknowledge well over 250,000 Canadians who live with congenital heart disease. Next week is congenital heart awareness week, and February 14 is recognized as congenital heart awareness day.

In Canada, one in every 100 babies is born with some form of CHD, making it the number one birth defect. These range from minor heart murmurs to complex structural anomalies. Sadly, there is no cure.

Years ago, CHD meant a child had a 20% chance of reaching adulthood. Today, thanks to advances in medical care and surgical treatments, 95% of CHD children now live well into adulthood. However, those living with CHD still require specialized lifelong cardiac care, with at least half facing the prospect of complications and multiple surgeries.

I stand in support of the Canadian Congenital Heart Alliance and commend the dedicated work of its volunteers.

HousingStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Jati Sidhu Liberal Mission—Matsqui—Fraser Canyon, BC

Mr. Speaker, I was delighted to be in Chilliwack, British Columbia a couple of weeks ago to announce the construction of 67 new rental housing units on behalf of my friend and colleague, the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development. Partnering with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the government invested $11.8 million in this great project.

This project is one of many under the national housing strategy. As a former property developer, I have engaged with countless Canadians who are trying to find their new home. Every Canadian deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. I am pleased to represent a government that is supporting a real solution to the housing issue in our country.

EducationStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin NDP Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, every time our society has undergone tremendous change, it has been related to education. To name just a few such changes since I was a kid, take for example our thoughts and attitudes towards seat belts, smoking, waste disposal and recycling, the recognition of LGBT rights, and climate change. In each instance, younger generations had a profound influence on their elders.

Change was possible in all of those areas because school was, and remains, the crucible of knowledge that shapes minds on a neutral, scientific basis. Since Teacher Appreciation Week and Hooked on School Days both happen to fall in February, I wanted to take this opportunity to express my admiration for these women and men who give it their all day after day, who sometimes inspire dreams, but always help keep them alive.

The idea of offering a teacher an apple is probably outdated, but I encourage anyone who is a parent to reach out and send an email of thanks or encouragement to those who are there for our kids day in and day out.

Laurentides—LabelleStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

David Graham Liberal Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker,

Now that January has finally passed
This bitter cold just cannot last
As temperatures begin to climb
February brings winter carnival time
Head to Sainte-Marguerite-du-Lac-Masson to skate
Or to Brébeuf for a dancing date
Sainte-Adèle and Huberdeau fill with sledding squeals
While at Ferme-Neuve they race snowmobiles
In Val-Morin and Notre-Dame-du-Laus, the fishing divine
While Mont-Tremblant is the place to dine
Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts can toot its own horn
Cause that's where Bonhomme Carnaval was born
Winter is about more than clearing snow
So Laurentides—Labelle is the place to go
That is why I give three cheers
To community members and volunteers
All of them are truly key
To enjoying this great party

Liberal Shipbuilding StrategyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Blaney Conservative Bellechasse—Les Etchemins—Lévis, QC

Mr. Speaker, in their desperate mad rush to try to launch the construction of a support ship, the Liberals are indefinitely postponing construction of several Coast Guard ships.

The Liberal shipbuilding strategy is marred by delays, improvisation, and cost overruns. Deadlines keep getting extended and not a single ship has been delivered. Worse yet, officials confirm that the design of this new ship is not even ready.

Confusion, bungling, manoeuvring, and no results—such is the Liberal track record.

The workers at Davie shipyard meet their deadlines without cost overruns and get nothing but Liberal contempt and unemployment in return.

With its aging fleet, the Coast Guard is struggling to keep the St. Lawrence ice free, but the Liberals say that is not their problem.

Liberal contempt and disdain toward Quebec and our Royal Canadian Navy is at an all-time high. However, in October, people will have the unique opportunity to fire these arrogant Liberals and elect a Conservative government that respects—

Liberal Shipbuilding StrategyStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

The hon. member for London North Centre.

Pride Men's Chorus LondonStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Fragiskatos Liberal London North Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, today I wish to highlight a remarkable organization. Pride Men's Chorus London is a program of Aeolian Hall that was co-founded in 2016 by Rod Culham and Clark Bryan.

I have had the opportunity to attend several concerts held by the chorus. Its members envision a world where the human voice is lifted up through song in a celebration of diversity, and where music is valued as a powerful gift and seen as a universal tool to achieve and sustain love and inclusion.

More than this, Pride Men's Chorus seeks to proactively combat stereotypes and false perceptions that give rise to hate and violence. Its work challenges a heteronormative world-view by inspiring audiences, the LGBTQ2 community in London and the broader community in London through advocacy and music. It celebrates victories won and mourns lives lost, all while promoting unconditional acceptance.

I thank the Pride Men's Chorus London for singing out, changing hearts and making our community stronger. It makes London and Canada better.

Ontario PlaceStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Adam Vaughan Liberal Spadina—Fort York, ON

Mr. Speaker, one of the best things the Conservatives ever did for Toronto was build Ontario Place. From the magic of IMAX and the wonder of Cinesphere to the riot we all had playing as kids in the Children's Village, or all the first dates on the lawn watching The Tragically Hip, Molly Johnson, Parachute Club and the long list of artists who circled the stage as we watched, Ontario Place is a cherished part of Toronto's waterfront.

However, the new provincial government at Queen's Park has put a for sale sign on the site and told the 1.5 million visitors who visited the site last year to scram. Clearly, Doug Ford is no Bill Davis. The Tories at Queen's Park are talking about a mall or, worse, a casino on the waterfront. What a waste. What a terrible deficit of imagination.

The people of Ontario, the folks of our city, and the Toronto Liberal caucus want to keep Ontario Place a public place. Hear our call: Ontario Place is a place for all. Ontario Place for all.

Carbon PricingStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman, MB

Mr. Speaker, people in the neighbourhood of Elmwood—Transcona in Winnipeg are struggling to make ends meet and want to know exactly how much the carbon tax will cost them. Many small businesses, tradespeople and households are finding their resources stretched. They are being pulled down by the Liberal government digging deeper and deeper into their pockets, and now they are worried about the carbon tax that has been forced upon them by the Prime Minister. For what?

The Liberal carbon tax does nothing to help the environment. It is only making it harder to put students through university, get children to art classes and sports games, and enable tradespeople and small business owners to make a living. Hard-working Canadians in Elmwood—Transcona want and deserve a government that will allow them the opportunity to create a better future for themselves, their children and their grandchildren.

Fortunately, in October, their voices will finally be heard when they kick this Prime Minister and their current MP out of office.

SeniorsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Kim Rudd Liberal Northumberland—Peterborough South, ON

Mr. Speaker, as parliamentarians, better seniors care is something we are all dedicated to. Today we are joined by the Canadian Association for Long Term Care. Since 2002, this association has been working hard to advocate for publicly funded health care services for seniors and has been sharing information, best practices and evidence in order to improve the quality of care for residents in long-term care, no matter where they may live.

The CEO, Daniel Fontaine, and members of the association are currently out meeting with parliamentarians to raise awareness of their pre-budget submission and the launch of the #BecauseYouCare campaign, which is calling on all members of this House to visit a care home in their ridings during the week of February 10 to 16. This evening the association is holding a reception from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in room 752, 131 Queen Street. I am proud to be sponsoring this event, and I encourage all members to attend and hear about the exciting work this association is doing to advance seniors care in Canada.

Men's HealthStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Deb Schulte Liberal King—Vaughan, ON

Mr. Speaker, today I rise to recognize one of my constituents in King—Vaughan, a former school principal and a father of five. He is known as the ultimate hockey dad, despite knowing nothing about the sport when he first moved to Canada from Jamaica in the 1970s, because Karl Subban and his wife Maria raised three sons, P.K., Malcolm and Jordan, who were all drafted into the NHL.

Indeed, Mr. Subban was so focused on helping his children, including two daughters, succeed that he sometimes overlooked his own health. At the age of 40, he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. This health scare and his own journey to become healthier were important factors in his decision to become a voice for men's health, and he was recognized in 2018 as a Canadian Men's Health Foundation champion.

Through a new awareness campaign, Don't Change Much, the foundation is inspiring men and their families to lead healthier lives using lifestyle programs to encourage small changes that will have a big impact on their health. Let us all remember to inspire our dads to take small steps to improve men's health. In fact, they do not have to change much.

Government PrioritiesStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

John Brassard Conservative Barrie—Innisfil, ON

Mr. Speaker, life is getting harder for Canadians under the current Liberal government. Neighbourhoods like Willowdale, Lansing and Newtonbrook, in north Toronto, are no exception. In these areas, transit is easily accessible, but the Prime Minister took away the transit tax credit, making life more expensive. The Liberals increased the cost of commuting for those who ride the TTC and the GO train to work, school and recreation.

Just this week, the Conservative leader celebrated the lunar new year in Willowdale with the Chinese community. While there is much to celebrate in the Year of the Pig, there is also frustration. Residents of Willowdale are right to be concerned about the carbon tax, which is raising the cost of everything. They are right to be outraged about how the Liberals have made it more difficult than ever to reunite parents and grandparents and they are right to be looking for better representation come this October.

The Period PurseStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Arif Virani Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to salute Jana Girdauskas and her amazing initiative, The Period Purse. Encountering a homeless woman in Toronto, Jana was struck by a simple but critical question: What does that individual do each month during her menstrual cycle? Jana quickly learned that the needs are vast, from women in the shelter system to low-income students and indigenous girls who stay home from school simply because they cannot afford tampons or pads.

Jana, to her credit, decided to act. She founded The Period Purse to provide female hygiene products for free to homeless and low-income women. What started as a small idea run from the porch of Jana's home, in my riding of Parkdale—High Park, has now blossomed into a national operation with chapters in nine different cities. To date, Jana's team has delivered over 7,800 period purses right across Canada.

On her second anniversary, I simply want to thank Jana for shedding light on such an important issue and for educating me, and other men like me, about this critical component of women's fight for equality.

Child CareStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, March 8 is International Women's Day, and though it is 2019, the government has yet to do anything more than pay lip service to women's equality. Universal child care is recognized as an undisputed contributor to the equality of women and the welfare of children, yet our feminist Prime Minister has done little to nothing toward creating it.

We know from the experience of the province of Quebec that executed responsibly, a universal, accessible and affordable system of child care not only pays for itself but serves to increase the GDP by enabling more women to enter the workforce, knowing that their children are taken care of.

Child care costs run as high as $2,000 per month per child in larger centres. This is financially crippling for women and families. We are raising the next generation of citizens. This failure is not feminism. We can do better, and when we do, all Canadians will benefit.

Government SpendingStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Rachael Harder Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister misled Canadians by promising that he would run three small deficits and then he would balance the budget. Instead, however, he borrowed massively, he spent out of control and he will not return the budget to balance until 2040. Economists have rightfully pointed out that there has been no global recession, no good reason and absolutely no excuse. Worse yet, struggling Canadians are paying for the Prime Minister's mistakes.

Nearly 50% of Canadians are living paycheque to paycheque and finding it difficult to do so, but the Prime Minister does not care. Why should he? He is sitting on a family fortune. During question period yesterday, he said, “low-income families do not benefit from tax breaks because they do not pay taxes.” What? How out of touch can he be? Of course they pay taxes. They pay income tax, payroll tax, HST, GST and now a massive carbon tax imposed by the Prime Minister. While the Prime Minister sits comfortably on his family fortune, those over whom the emperor rules are struggling to make ends meet.

Canadians deserve better. Canadians deserve an opportunity to get ahead, and this side of the House is going to do that.

French LanguageStatements By Members

February 6th, 2019 / 2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Rémi Massé Liberal Avignon—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia, QC

Mr. Speaker, we will never apologize for speaking French in the House.

I want to remind my colleagues that the first French words were heard in the new continent when Jacques Cartier set foot in Gaspé and met the Mi'kmaq nation in July 1534 .

Our language is a living language here and around the world. The Francophonie has 90 member states representing 284 million individuals who speak French. French is a vibrant language, it is a beautiful language, it is our language and the language of both our ancestors and our children. It represents and defines who we are as a country.

Franco-Ontarians have been attacked by the Ford government, and the Conservatives opposite criticized my colleague yesterday for speaking French in the House.

We will never apologize for speaking French. I am proud of my language and my culture, and I am proud to be part of a government that defends the French language.

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister said yesterday that low-income families do not benefit from tax breaks because they do not pay taxes.

Does the Prime Minister truly believe that low-income Canadians pay no GST, no gas taxes, no EI taxes and no income tax?

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, from the beginning, the Conservatives have always given advantages and benefits to the wealthy and made the rest of Canadians pay more.

We know that investing in the middle class and all those working hard to join it creates economic growth.

The Conservatives opposed lowering taxes on the middle class.

They opposed the Canada child benefit.

They opposed the guaranteed income supplement increase.

They opposed investments in affordable housing for Canadians.

Mr. Speaker—

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

The hon. Leader of the Opposition.

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the fact of the matter is, yesterday in the House, the Prime Minister said that low-income Canadians “do not benefit from tax breaks because they do not pay taxes.” That is his quote.

Can the Prime Minister tell Canadians this: Does he truly believe that low-income Canadians pay no GST, pay no EI payroll taxes, pay no federal taxes and pay no gas taxes?

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, for 10 years under Stephen Harper, the Conservatives put forward an economic plan that gives advantages and benefits to the wealthiest 1% while neglecting to help low-income Canadians who actually need that help. That is one of the reasons Canadians chose a government that would focus on the middle class and people working hard to join it. That is what we have been doing.

While we have been doing that, the Conservatives have opposed lowering taxes on the middle class. They opposed the guaranteed income supplement increase for seniors. They even opposed the Canada child benefit. They opposed the things that make a difference in people's—

TaxationOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Geoff Regan

The hon. Leader of the Opposition.