House of Commons Hansard #26 of the 43rd Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was debate.

Topics

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Conservative

Kenny Chiu Conservative Steveston—Richmond East, BC

Madam Speaker, Hong Kong's much-loved pro-democracy media mogul Jimmy Lai, or Lai Chee-Ying, was just arrested for illegal assembly along with many other very prominent political figures. The promised freedoms of Hong Kongers are being crushed, and this government must take a stand against these violations of human rights and international law.

Hong Kong's basic law says that its chief executive should be chosen by universal suffrage. Will this government, in keeping up with the basic law and the one country, two systems agreement, finally express support for universal suffrage in Hong Kong?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Don Valley West Ontario

Liberal

Rob Oliphant LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his concern about Hong Kong, which is shared equally I think by every member in the House. It is an important issue. We are watching these developments closely as we have been doing for many months.

Human rights, freedom of expression, the freedom of the press and the freedom of parliamentarians and elected politicians needs to be absolutely protected by our government. We are monitoring the situation. We have issued several statements. We are working bilaterally and multilaterally with partners. We continue to recognize the policy that there is one China with two governments and two systems.

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

John McKay Liberal Scarborough—Guildwood, ON

Madam Speaker, Benjamin Bwamiki is a young graphic artist from Scarborough, who has taken a hobby and turned it into his business.

His client list includes the Raptors' Fred VanVleet, the Lakers' Danny Green and a number of rappers. The 16-year-old baccalaureate student juggles a heavy study schedule while supporting his family. He is a fantastic example of the talent found in Scarborough.

As we come to the end of Black History Month, would the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion update the House on efforts to support the black community in Canada?

Canadian HeritageOral Questions

Noon

Milton Ontario

Liberal

Adam van Koeverden LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth and to the Minister of Canadian Heritage (Sport)

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague from Scarborough—Guildwood for his work in promoting diversity and inclusion in his community for over 20 years.

This past month, Canadians have been celebrating the contributions of black Canadians to the country that we love. Our government was proud to support Black History Month cultural and community events across Canada. We have invested $44 million to support black communities.

We have also launched an anti-racism strategy to address anti-black racism in Canada. Canadians have heard us say it before: Diversity is our strength. Black Canadians have added so much to our country, and celebrating black history does not end in February.

I encourage everyone to champion black Canadians like Benjamin throughout the entire year.

The EconomyOral Questions

Noon

Conservative

Colin Carrie Conservative Oshawa, ON

Madam Speaker, manufacturers in southern Ontario are losing millions of dollars because of the Prime Minister's weak leadership.

Montreal Gateway Terminals will be charging fees to manufacturers who cannot move their product from ship to rail. Businesses in the GTA that rely on rail to deliver raw materials are having to pay huge fees for a problem the Prime Minister created.

Will the Prime Minister compensate businesses that are being held hostage, instead of appeasing radical protesters trying to derail cargo trains?

The EconomyOral Questions

Noon

St. Catharines Ontario

Liberal

Chris Bittle LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport

Madam Speaker, as an MP representing a manufacturing area like Oshawa, I understand the concerns his constituents are facing. We understand the impacts these blockades are having across the country on small businesses, manufacturers and farmers.

As the Prime Minister stated last week, it is time for the remaining blockades to come down. We are hopeful for a swift resolution on all remaining blockades to ensure that Canadians affected by these blockades can return to work.

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

February 28th, 2020 / noon

Conservative

Chris Lewis Conservative Essex, ON

Madam Speaker, respect for first nations, Inuit and Métis peoples should underpin all of the discussions in the House. Further, it is also important that all Canadians are equal before the law and enjoy the same rights and freedoms.

That being said, is it the Prime Minister's intent to take firearms that are legally owned and bought in good faith away from our law-abiding, indigenous fellow Canadians who require these tools for their hunting and trapping rights?

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

Noon

Scarborough—Rouge Park Ontario

Liberal

Gary Anandasangaree LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

Madam Speaker, I want to thank my friend for his comments with respect to respecting indigenous rights.

I want to start by assuring the House that our government is working to renew Canada's relationship with indigenous peoples, building one based on the affirmation of rights, respect, co-operation and partnership, which is why we will fully implement UNDRIP. We are working collaboratively through constructive rights recognition tables with real co-development of policy as we speak.

We are also working to ensure Canada is fully implementing indigenous treaties, agreements and other arrangements. Reconciliation is not only an indigenous issue, it is a Canadian imperative, one I hope our—

Indigenous AffairsOral Questions

Noon

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

The hon. member for New Brunswick Southwest.

TaxationOral Questions

Noon

Conservative

John Williamson Conservative New Brunswick Southwest, NB

Madam Speaker, the national revenue minister brought in changes to the disability tax credit in 2017. The government said this was to improve accessibility.

Three years later, constituents from my riding with lifelong mental disabilities are still waiting for access. They are still denied eligibility even after providing legitimate medical documentation. One family was even forced to go to tax court before the government conceded that mental health issues are eligible.

When will the government stop discriminating against Canadians with mental health disabilities so they can receive this tax credit?

TaxationOral Questions

Noon

Gaspésie—Les-Îles-de-la-Madeleine Québec

Liberal

Diane Lebouthillier LiberalMinister of National Revenue

Madam Speaker, our government is introducing measures to help ensure the long-term financial security and independence of people with disabilities. In 2017, our government reinstated the disability advisory committee, which was dismantled by the Harper Conservatives in 2006. We thank the members of the committee for working hard to make recommendations to the Canada Revenue Agency concerning better support for people with disabilities. Our government is working on implementing most of the recommendations. The report released last spring will inform our future discussions.

PovertyOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Liberal

Ginette Petitpas Taylor Liberal Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe, NB

Madam Speaker, when our government was elected in 2015, we committed to one of the boldest and most ambitious federal initiatives in the history of Canada: reducing poverty among Canadians by 50%. I am very proud of the progress made to date.

Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development in charge of housing give the House an update on the various initiatives in New Brunswick and across Canada?

PovertyOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Spadina—Fort York Ontario

Liberal

Adam Vaughan LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Families

Madam Speaker, I am very proud to announce that since 2015, our government has lifted more than a million Canadians out of poverty with investments we have made across the country. In fact, in New Brunswick alone, more than half of the children who were living in poverty when we took office have been lifted out of poverty and two-thirds of the seniors have been lifted out of poverty as well.

The results of the Canadian Income Survey are crystal clear: The investments we are making from coast to coast to coast are having a tremendous impact on alleviating poverty. We have more work to do, particularly in racialized and indigenous communities. We will get that work done. We hope the rest of Parliament works with us to achieve these great results.

Immigration, Refugees and CitizenshipOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

NDP

Randall Garrison NDP Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke, BC

Madam Speaker, since 2015, New Democrats have been pressing the Liberal government to create a path to safety in Canada for those whose lives are at risk because of their sexual orientation or gender identity (SOGI). So far, all we have is a pilot program for just 50 SOGI refugees, just 50, when Rainbow Refugee organizations in Canada receive more than 1,000 requests for urgent assistance each month.

Given the rising tide of violence against SOGI communities, will the government now recognize the grave threat to SOGI refugees and quickly implement a comprehensive and substantial program for those fleeing violence for who they love or who they are?

Immigration, Refugees and CitizenshipOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Hochelaga Québec

Liberal

Soraya Martinez Ferrada LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Immigration

Madam Speaker, like countries around the world, Canada has been seeing an increasing number of asylum seekers. With the investment in the budget in 2019, once again we are leading the way in building an immigration system that is compassionate and respectful of the rules of law. We are making the necessary investments to allow the IRB to process 50,000 claims a year so that those who are found to need protection can start their lives in Canada sooner and failed claims can be removed.

As the UNHCR said, the investments will allow us to uphold the highest standards and processes for asylum claims.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Green

Elizabeth May Green Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Madam Speaker, I rise today to raise the urgent matter of the climate emergency. Under the terms of the Paris Agreement, 2020 is the year in which Canada must improve its climate target. We agreed to do so in 2015. We are now delinquent, in that the COP decision in Paris called for the new targets to be tabled by February 9 of this year. We need to table our new target. It needs to meet the IPCC imperative.

Can the minister update the House on progress to deliver a climate accountability act and a new target?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Vaudreuil—Soulanges Québec

Liberal

Peter Schiefke LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Madam Speaker, I would like to thank my hon. colleague for her work on this issue.

We took a leadership role in 2015 when we signed the Paris Agreement and encouraged other countries to do the same. Through the record investments, plans and programs we have put in place, projections show we have been able to bring us to 75% of the way there.

We know there is more work to do, which is why we are committing to not only meeting that target but exceeding it and putting in place, in the coming months, the expert panel that will show the House and all Canadians how we plan on being carbon neutral by 2050. It is something we need to do for all of us and for our children and grandchildren.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Conservative

Rachael Harder Conservative Lethbridge, AB

Madam Speaker, I rise on a point of order. During question period, the members opposite made the claim that under their government, they had encouraged workforce participation among all people in Canada. That is not true.

According to the Library research, workforce participation for women has actually dropped as a percentage, since reaching its highest mark under the Harper government and the Conservative Party of Canada. I would like to table this document in th House.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

Does the hon. member have the unanimous consent to table the report?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

12:05 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

No.

Alleged Premature Disclosure of Private Member's BillPrivilegeOral Questions

12:10 p.m.

Winnipeg North Manitoba

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the President of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Madam Speaker, in light of an apology from the member for Markham—Unionville with respect to the premature disclosure of his bill, I too, would like to apologize unreservedly for the premature disclosure of the contents of Bill C-7, medical assistance in dying.

I would like to state categorically that no one from the government was authorized to speak publicly on this bill prior to its introduction.

Alleged Premature Disclosure of Private Member's BillPrivilegeOral Questions

12:10 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

I appreciate the additional information. The comments from the parliamentary secretary will certainly be taken into consideration as we bring the decision before the House.

Foreign AffairsRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

Don Valley West Ontario

Liberal

Rob Oliphant LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Madam Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the treaties entitled: “Amendments to Annex III of the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade”; “Annex VII of the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade: Procedures and Mechanisms on Compliance with the Rotterdam Convention”; “Amendments to Annexes I and II to the 1998 Protocol on Persistent Organic Pollutants to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution”; “Amendments to Annexes A and C to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants”; “Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas on Air Transport”; and last, “Audiovisual Coproduction Treaty between the Government of Canada and the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine”.

FinanceCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Liberal Malpeque, PE

Madam Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the first report of the Standing Committee on Finance entitled “Canadian Ideas: Leveraging our Strengths”, the pre-budget consultations report prior to the 2020 budget, as ordered by the House.

I first want to thank members of all parties who presented witnesses and who worked strenuously to get this report prepared on time. The report contains some 92 recommendations, and it shows that a minority Parliament can work, with all parties working together.

I also want to thank those who presented submissions prior to the August 2019 deadline and also those who appeared as witnesses in February, presenting their ideas.

I also want to thank the clerk, David Gagnon, and the analysts with the Library of Parliament, who worked long hours and extra hours, Andrew Barton, Brett Capwell, Michaël Lambert-Racine and Sylvain Fleury, for all the work they did.

Finally, I have a point that is beyond the recommendations themselves. I would refer Canadians to appendix A, which includes the many proposals put forward by organizations and individuals across Canada, which is food for thought for future discussions.

FinanceCommittees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

12:10 p.m.

NDP

The Assistant Deputy Speaker NDP Carol Hughes

Does the hon. member for Carleton have any dissenting opinions he wishes to present?