House of Commons Hansard #18 of the 43rd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was wet'suwet'en.

Topics

Academic SuccessStatements by Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Angelo Iacono Liberal Alfred-Pellan, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to begin by wishing my son, Gabriel, a happy birthday, as he turns six today.

[Member spoke in Italian]

[Translation]

The work we do in this House is for him.

This week we are celebrating Hooked on School Days, which highlights the hard work and efforts of our students.

Whether it is creating favourable learning environments or connecting youth with inspiring role models, we can now play a role in encouraging perseverance among the young people in our communities to help them reach their full potential.

I invite my colleagues to actively participate in this social challenge by recognizing success and encouraging young people in their communities, since all such actions contribute to their success. That is what I have done for the primary schools in Alfred-Pellan, where grade five and six students who have excelled will receive a certificate of recognition.

I congratulate those students for all they do every day to contribute to their own success.

Family DayStatements by Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Jeremy Patzer Conservative Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

Mr. Speaker, yesterday I joined Canadians across the country in celebrating Family Day, and I want to take this opportunity to pay tribute to all families for their contribution as the bedrock of our society.

I particularly want to thank the families who have members serving in the House who sacrifice much in allowing us to be here. I may be biased, but I am convinced no one does a better job of this than my wife Kyla, who is here today, along with our three children, Jacoby, Jada and Kenzie.

Several retired MPs have told me that if at the end of my political career, I no longer have my family at my side, I will have gained nothing in my time in office, but if I leave with a strong, loving and intact family, I will have accomplished much. I can tell my wife Kyla that our work here has just begun, but it is because of her that I have every confidence we will accomplish much in the years to come. I thank her for being my rock.

If members will allow me, I have one word of advice, which is to always put their families first.

Guy CormierStatements by Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Serge Cormier Liberal Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to honour the memory of a great man.

Guy Cormier was a fisher and mayor of the village of Saint-Léolin, in my riding. Sadly, he died suddenly on January 11. Mr. Cormier had two dreams: to become mayor and to find a new purpose for the former school in his village. In 2014, he was elected to municipal council and became mayor in 2018. Thanks to him, the former school became a hydroponic greenhouse that is enjoying great success.

Guy, or Ti-Guy as he was known, was a friend to many. He gave countless hours of his time to various causes and was valued as a volunteer. Guy always had a smile and a good story to tell. He was a man who loved politics and never hesitated to give advice to elected members to help them understand the issues of our region.

His death is a major loss for the entire community. I offer my deepest condolences to his wife, Edwige, his daughter, Nancy, as well as his family and friends.

Ti-Guy, you will be sorely missed. Thank you for your incredible contribution to the riding of Acadie—Bathurst.

The PatriotesStatements by Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Denis Trudel Bloc Longueuil—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, Saturday was a day of mourning for Quebec.

On February 15, 1839, five of our heroes, five Patriotes, were hanged at the Pied-du-Courant prison. They were executed for defending their nation's freedom.

François-Marie-Thomas Chevalier de Lorimier, Charles Hindelang, Pierre-Rémi Narbonne, Amable Daunais and François Nicolas lost their lives for the sake of justice and democracy.

Their voices were silenced that all Quebeckers might be heard.

The night before he was executed, Chevalier de Lorimier wrote these final words: “Although so much has gone wrong, I take heart and continue to hope for the future. My friends and my children will see better days. They will be free. Long live freedom and independence.”

Family DayStatements by Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Marie-France Lalonde Liberal Orléans, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday all Ontarians celebrated Family Day, and the community of Orleans, which I am privileged to represent, joined me for some fun at a local bowling alley.

I was pleased to see such a great turnout as nearly 500 people joined me at the Orleans Bowling Centre to play with their friends and their families. It always gives me great joy to see two and three generations taking the time to share an activity together.

When elected representatives like us can organize that kind of community activity, in many cases it enables entire families to participate in recreational activities that would be too costly otherwise.

I want to thank Kevin, Jonathan and Rock from the Orleans Bowling Centre who made sure the event ran smoothly. They have been extraordinary partners and I thank them very much. I thank Orleans for showing up for bowling day.

Dr. John Spencer MacDonaldStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Kenny Chiu Conservative Steveston—Richmond East, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to acknowledge the passing of an exceptional Canadian, Dr. John Spencer MacDonald.

Dr. MacDonald was a graduate and esteemed professor of engineering at both UBC and MIT, who went on to receive office in the Order of Canada. He was also the co-founder of MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates, a high-tech company headquartered in Steveston—Richmond East, better known to Canadians as the company of Canadarm and the constellation of RADARSAT Earth-observation satellites.

I was an employee of MDA for many years. It is from this experience that I can say that MDA under Dr. MacDonald's vision and leadership was the incubator of many professionals within Canada's technology sector, a source of pride for the Canadian economy.

I know what a difficult loss this is for many within the MDA family. Not only will Dr. MacDonald be missed for his engineering genius, but also because he was known as an exceptional individual and a visionary. His death will leave a void in the lives of all those on whom he imparted his wisdom during his life.

National Flag of Canada DayStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Pam Damoff Liberal Oakville North—Burlington, ON

Mr. Speaker, on February 15, 1965, our national flag was raised for the first time on Parliament Hill. In 1996, February 15 was officially designated National Flag of Canada Day, thanks in large part to the advocacy of former MP for Parkdale—High Park and now Oakville North—Burlington resident, Jesse Fliss. Last Saturday, we celebrated our flag day from coast to coast to coast.

At the official ceremony inaugurating the new Canadian flag in 1965, the Hon. Maurice Bourget, Speaker of the Senate, said, “The flag is the symbol of the nation's unity, for it, beyond any doubt, represents all the citizens of Canada without distinction of race, language, belief or opinion.”

Residents are invited to drop into my community office and pick up a paper flag poster that they can display to honour and show our pride in being a beacon of strength, fairness and freedom around the world.

Simon Fraser UniversityStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Terry Beech Liberal Burnaby North—Seymour, BC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to congratulate Dr. Joy Johnson, who has been named the next president of Simon Fraser University. Throughout her career, Joy has done extensive work in gender and health studies and has worked on groundbreaking issues, including diversity in hiring processes and creating a culture of innovation.

Her appointment also means that in September, we will see the departure of our current president, Andrew Petter. I have been incredibly fortunate to work with Andrew on a number of files during the last decade. He has set a vision for an engaged university that would meet the needs not only of our community, but also those of Canada and the world. He has championed entrepreneurship education and has significantly grown all of SFU's campuses in significant and meaningful ways.

Andrew has left an incredible legacy on the SFU community, and I want to thank him for his service.

We are proud of the outstanding work that has been done at SFU, and we would love to see more of it for an even greater positive impact in the future.

IranStatements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Garnett Genuis Conservative Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, AB

Mr. Speaker, while exposing the evils of slavery, William Wilberforce said, "You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know."

We here know well the horrors inflicted by the Iranian regime, horrors most experienced by the people of Iran, but seen and felt by many Canadians after the downing of flight 752. We have seen the photos of parents and children whose lives were cut short. We have felt with them the crushing loss and pain. Some may choose to look the other way, but we may never again say that we did not know.

In the midst of feeling this pain, Canadians and Iranians saw the images of our Prime Minister, grinning, hugging, bowing and shaking blood-stained hands during an interaction with the Iranian foreign minister. Did our Prime Minister know how this portrayal of obsequiousness and ease would be used by the regime and could impact its victims? After attending memorials and meetings with victims across this country, either he did not know, or he did not care.

Canada has a choice to make. We either embrace the regime or we stand with its victims. We cannot do both.

Canada Summer Jobs InitiativeStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Fonseca Liberal Mississauga East—Cooksville, ON

Mr. Speaker, today I would like to talk about a program that is well appreciated in my riding of Mississauga East—Cooksville, the Canada summer jobs program.

The Canada summer jobs program is rolling out 70,000 jobs for our youth. In 2019, employers and youth satisfaction levels with this program were high. I am encouraging employers and youth of Mississauga East and across Canada to effectively utilize this program's tremendous opportunities. By encouraging our youth into these high quality jobs, we are helping youth, particularly those facing barriers to employment; employers of 50 or fewer employees; and our communities.

A summer job is an important way to earn money while gaining valuable work experience and will help our youth on the road to a successful career. In my riding, hundreds of employers and youth have benefited by taking part every year. I encourage employers to come forward with their applications during the employer application period that is now open until February 24.

Let us help our youth build our future workforce.

Carbon PricingStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Rosemarie Falk Conservative Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has stood in this place on occasion after occasion and stated that Canadians would be better off under his Liberal carbon tax. Well, the reality of the Liberal carbon tax is setting in and the Prime Minister would be hard pressed to find someone in my riding who is better off.

Simply put, this assertion fails to acknowledge the basic realities of living in rural Saskatchewan and my constituents deserve better from the government. The cost of everything is going up and they are feeling the squeeze, none more so than our farmers and our agricultural producers. From grain drying to hauling crops, rail transportation and other major farm expenses, their bottom lines and their ability to compete are taking a direct hit.

It is time that the Prime Minister abandons his carbon tax scheme that unfairly punishes rural Canadians and agricultural producers, and deliver a real plan for the environment.

Government PrioritiesStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Rachael Harder Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, professional protesters and well-funded NGOs have seized the opportunity to divide indigenous communities and threaten their chance for financial prosperity. The very fundamentals of our country, our unity, our security and our economic well-being are under attack. Where is the Prime Minister while this is happening? He has been traipsing around the world trying to get us a seat at the UN Security Council.

As if the Prime Minister's absence did not already send the message loud and clear that he really does not care, he took it one step further. While in the Republic of Senegal, he was discussing the attractive growth potential of their oil and gas sector. That is right. Our Prime Minister was in a country in west Africa advocating for them and his vanity project, while ignoring what is going on in his own country. This is not leadership.

We on this side of the House call upon the Prime Minister to take seriously the responsibilities that have been entrusted to him as the prime minister of this country. We ask that he would make sure that the rule of law is upheld and that we as a country would enjoy a united, strong, free and prosperous future.

Relations with Indigenous PeoplesStatements by Members

February 18th, 2020 / 2:10 p.m.

NDP

Mumilaaq Qaqqaq NDP Nunavut, NU

Mr. Speaker, what we are seeing across this country is not just about one resource project. This is about generations of underfunding, broken promises and broken treaties. The federal government has backed indigenous peoples into a corner. Food, water, safe housing and infrastructure are fundamental human rights that the federal government has promised us and continues to deny us.

The anger around Wet'suwet'en territories is about the failed policies that have let indigenous peoples down. The federal government has ignored or threatened our well-being and our very existence as indigenous peoples. How can we talk about reconciliation when the federal government has stolen our lands, slaughtered our sled dogs, refused us our rights and continues to give us impossible choices?

The situation is complex, but here is a simple start: The RCMP needs to stand down and the Prime Minister needs to get involved and meet with hereditary chiefs.

Mathieu GirouardStatements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Martin Champoux Bloc Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, the riding of Drummond is in mourning. Last Friday, a traffic accident claimed the life of a man who was dearly loved by his family, friends and entire community.

Lieutenant Mathieu Girouard, 44, was a fireman in Drummondville for 18 years. Mathieu was also a super dad of five children, a real family man, and very involved in his community. As a model fireman, he exemplified the best of his profession's values. Last Friday evening, on Valentine's Day, Mathieu was driving with his wife Karine in Saint-Célestin when a drunk driver struck them, killing Mathieu and seriously injuring Karine, who is fighting for her life.

Here, in the House, I want to offer my most sincere condolences to Mathieu's family and friends. Mathieu was a firefighter lieutenant, badge number 630. I wish his family much strength and serenity in the days and weeks to come. My thoughts are with Karine, his wife, who is currently recovering in hospital. The tight-knit community of Drummondville will support her throughout this ordeal. The riding of Drummond has lost a hero.

Christie BlatchfordStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Peter Kent Conservative Thornhill, ON

Mr. Speaker, over the generations, Canadians have been served by many great journalists, eloquent chroniclers reporting from city halls, cop shops and courtrooms, locker rooms, rinks, sports fields, battlefields, sites of disaster and human tragedy.

Christie Blatchford reported and opined from all those places over almost a half century, but she was like none before. Her newsgathering skills ranged from gritty to compassionate. She inspired colleagues and rivals. She challenged conformity and authority, and very often her editors. As a former editor remembered last week, she made every newsroom better.

Christie won more awards for her work than time allows to list. When she was inducted into the Canadian News Hall of Fame, she told a colleague, “I care about stories that tell us why the system matters, why things are worth protecting, why the rule of law is important.”

It is an honour today to remember a journo's journo, a truly great Canadian.

Hooked on School DaysStatements by Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Soraya Martinez Ferrada Liberal Hochelaga, QC

Mr. Speaker, we all know that education is a vital part of children's lives. Historically speaking, the school drop-out rate in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve is one of the highest in Montreal. Approximately 33% of elementary school students have a disability or adjustment or learning difficulties, and two-thirds of elementary and secondary school students are immigrants.

I would like to commend the people of Hochelaga-Maisonneuve who have been taking action for over 10 years to keep kids in school. I thank the members of Chantier promotion et valorisation de la persévérance scolaire for their work.

In order to succeed in school, children, adolescents and young adults rely every day on the help of teams and organizations who help meet their needs. Group mentoring and simple acts, such as providing encouragement and celebrating accomplishments, promote success because staying in school is not a matter of performance.

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, it is almost 4,400 kilometres from the Wet'suwet'en territory to the protesters in Ontario, and the Prime Minister this morning spoke of dialogue with the people who are breaking the law. Does the Prime Minister think these protesters have more to say about what is in the best interest of the Wet'suwet'en First Nation, including those elected councillors who want jobs for their kids and their grandkids and who support the Coastal GasLink project?

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, earlier this afternoon I was pleased to sit down with three parliamentary leaders to talk and discuss concretely the approach we are taking in constructive dialogue to resolving this situation not just peacefully, but for the long term.

The leader of the official opposition, the leader of the Conservatives, excluded himself from this conversation with his unacceptable approach to not have constructive dialogue but to follow an approach that would hurt the very people he supposes he wants to help.

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, dialogue is not going to pay the bills for people who are facing layoffs because of people breaking the law who have no connection to the Wet'suwet'en First Nation. He is elevating people who have no connection, people who constantly protest and try to blockade energy projects, to the same level of those indigenous Canadians who have been working hard for reconciliation in this country, and that is shameful.

I have a simple question. On what day will these illegal blockades be taken down?

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative Party of Canada continues to demonstrate that it does not understand that the path forward is concrete actions in reconciliation, in dialogue—

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Anthony Rota

The heckling is getting a little out of hand. Name-calling that was on this morning is not something that is parliamentary and I do not think we want to hear it during question period. I would point that out to anyone who is thinking of name-calling again.

The right hon. Prime Minister.

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Justin Trudeau Liberal Papineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, we need a long-term constructive solution. The short-term forceful approaches proposed by the Conservatives would end up harming the very farmers, small business owners and workers across this country with their heavy-handed approach that would plunge the country into long-term chaos.

We will exhaust every action possible to resolve this situation peacefully and rapidly.

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Regina—Qu'Appelle Saskatchewan

Conservative

Andrew Scheer ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, what the Prime Minister seems to be talking about today is action if necessary but not necessarily action. Does he not understand that the Wet'suwet'en First Nation supports this project? The elected band councillors support this project. The majority of the heredity chiefs even support this project.

When he talks about dialogue, moving forward and a path, does he not realize that he has an obligation to stand up and defend the interests of the Wet'suwet'en First Nation and their support for this project?

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Papineau Québec

Liberal

Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as Prime Minister, I have an obligation to stand up for Canadians, and that is exactly what I am doing.

We are engaged in actions that will lead to a long-term resolution of these issues in partnership and respect. That is how we ensure that for farmers, for workers, for small business owners, over the coming months and years, they can rely on our transportation system, because we will not have engaged in the kind of short-term, forceful actions that the Conservatives are proposing.