House of Commons Hansard #95 of the 44th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was hybrid.

Topics

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Emergency Preparedness politically interfered in a mass murder investigation to advance his own party's political agenda. RCMP Superintendent Darren Campbell witnessed this interference first-hand, but the minister is claiming he made this all up. Former RCMP commissioner Paulson said Superintendent Darren Campbell “is one of the best investigators in the force and a highly reliable officer with tremendous integrity.”

Why should Canadians believe the minister over a well-respected RCMP officer?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Scarborough Southwest Ontario

Liberal

Bill Blair LiberalPresident of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, I have absolutely no doubt Superintendent Campbell is in fact an exemplary officer and I have absolutely no intention of questioning his integrity. However, I also want to make it very clear that there was no interference in this case for any reason.

With respect to the prohibition of assault rifles, it was something we were deeply committed to. The vicious murder of 22 Canadians using firearms deepened our resolve to make Canadians safe and to keep our promise.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Conservative Selkirk—Interlake—Eastman, MB

Mr. Speaker, it is no surprise to hear that the minister and the Prime Minister pressured the RCMP commissioner into doing their bidding. Let us remember that the Ethics Commissioner found the Prime Minister guilty of political interference when he pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to do his bidding, but she got fired because she said no.

Now the minister is accusing Superintendent Darren Campbell, who has a stellar reputation, of just making up a story. How can the minister expect Canadians to believe his unethical, scandal-plagued government over a stellar RCMP officer?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Scarborough Southwest Ontario

Liberal

Bill Blair LiberalPresident of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately, the only thing being made up is his criticism of Superintendent Campbell; I offer none. I am absolutely certain the man is an exemplary police officer and a man of integrity, and I have no criticism of him. What I am advising this House, however, is that there was no interference in this case. There was no pressure brought upon the commissioner for any reason, and the commissioner has—

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Anthony Rota

Order, please.

I am going to stop the member for a second, again.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Melissa Lantsman Conservative Thornhill, ON

Let him start again; it's good.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Anthony Rota

I will follow the advice of the hon. member and let the hon. minister start again.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Blair Liberal Scarborough Southwest, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am happy for the opportunity to dispute a false statement, frankly, by my colleague across the aisle.

I have not, and will not, criticize. I offer no criticism whatsoever to Superintendent Campbell, who I believe to be, based on all of the evidence, an exemplary officer. I am not questioning his integrity.

However, it is important for me to be very clear: There was no interference in this case. There was no pressure brought to bear on the RCMP commissioner, and in fact the commissioner has confirmed that there was no pressure in a statement that she issued on Tuesday.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Conservative Grande Prairie—Mackenzie, AB

Mr. Speaker, Lia Scanlan, director of communications for the RCMP, said this of Commissioner Lucki: “She went out and did that. It was all political pressure. That is 100% [the] Minister...and the Prime Minister. And we have a Commissioner that does not push back.”

The minister has said that he trusts these RCMP members. He says he stands behind the commissioner. The question is this: Who is not telling the truth?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Scarborough Southwest Ontario

Liberal

Bill Blair LiberalPresident of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, histrionics aside, I would direct the members to the commissioner's statement from Tuesday, in which she makes it very clear that there was no interference.

However, I remind this House that Canadians, including those who were directly impacted by this tragedy, expressed very serious concerns about how and when the RCMP shared information with the public. In response to the concerns expressed by the victims and families in this terrible tragedy, our government specified in the order of reference to the Mass Casualty Commission that it examine the communications approach taken both during and after this event. That commission will hear testimony under oath, and its findings will be important in providing accurate information to the families in this terrible tragedy.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Alistair MacGregor NDP Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, BC

Mr. Speaker, families who lost loved ones in the worst mass shooting in Canadian history want answers. That a government would compromise this investigation is unacceptable. Nova Scotians have suffered enough. There are very serious allegations of interference in the RCMP's investigation for the Liberals' political gain.

Yesterday the minister questioned the accuracy of these allegations, but the integrity of the claims is supported by a former RCMP commissioner.

Will the minister be transparent in explaining what role the PMO played in this investigation?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Scarborough Southwest Ontario

Liberal

Bill Blair LiberalPresident of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, I am happy for the opportunity to explain to the member that neither the Prime Minister's Office nor the Minister of Public Safety's office had any role in interfering or pressuring the RCMP to make any operational decisions with respect to the investigation or with respect to RCMP communications around the investigation.

We did hear very serious criticism and concern by the families of the victims of this terrible tragedy and by Nova Scotians across the province with respect to the communications that took place during this event and after, and that is precisely why we have tasked the Mass Casualty Commission with looking very specifically at the communications that took place both during and after this event, because those families deserve—

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Anthony Rota

The hon. member for Vancouver Kingsway.

HealthOral Questions

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Don Davies NDP Vancouver Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, health experts are raising the alarm. According to the Canadian Medical Association, our health care system is collapsing around us. Health care workers are dealing with severe burnout and leaving the profession. Patients are being treated in cars. They wait months for diagnosis and are suffering without care. Despite this, the Liberals are missing in action.

Will the government call an immediate meeting with provinces and territories to address the health care staffing crisis and provide significant, stable and long-term federal funding for health care to Canadians?

HealthOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Québec Québec

Liberal

Jean-Yves Duclos LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to be able to speak to that matter. We have had many discussions and a lot of action in the last few weeks and months with my health minister colleagues.

It is true that our health care workers are very burdened physically and mentally with COVID-19 and many other serious issues. In fact, I am speaking again this afternoon with my health minister colleagues on that topic and many others.

HealthOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Tim Louis Liberal Kitchener—Conestoga, ON

Mr. Speaker, while many Canadians struggle with mental health issues, certain groups in Canada are more likely to face disproportionate challenges to accessing mental health supports. Recently, the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions announced $8.6 million to support community-based programs related to mental health promotion. This will increase health equity, help to address the underlying determinants of health and improve supports.

Can the minister inform the House of the funding our government announced to support the mental health of Canadians?

HealthOral Questions

June 23rd, 2022 / 2:50 p.m.

Toronto—St. Paul's Ontario

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett LiberalMinister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for Kitchener—Conestoga for the question and for his hard work and advocacy on mental health, but also on the importance of music and the arts.

We are committed to addressing disparities and promoting positive mental health. This funding has created comprehensive support systems for people in need of them. Investing in these community-led projects that address the mental health of children, youth, refugees, newcomers and their caregivers is an integral in our holistic approach to healing.

We will continue to support projects that have the potential to improve health outcomes, and will support mental health and address substance use of people across the country.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Eric Melillo Conservative Kenora, ON

Mr. Speaker, at 7.7%, inflation is at another record high. The price of gas this week in Dryden is $2.15 a litre. It is $2.20 in Kenora, and over $2.30 in Red Lake and Sioux Lookout, yet the government is the only one in the G7 that is not considering a plan to provide immediate relief at the pumps.

When will the government get serious about the affordability crisis we are facing and provide a real plan to address inflation?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

North Vancouver B.C.

Liberal

Jonathan Wilkinson LiberalMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, as I have said, Canada is focused very much on two elements of this. The first is addressing the affordability challenges facing Canadians. That is something that is critically important for all government members on this side of the House. My colleague, the Minister of Finance, went through a number of initiatives that are under way to try to address the affordability issue for Canadians.

We are also working internationally to address the energy security crisis by increasing production of oil and gas alongside our American counterparts, our Brazilian counterparts and others to ensure that we are actually stabilizing global energy markets and bringing prices down.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Marty Morantz Conservative Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia—Headingley, MB

Mr. Speaker, this week, Canadians received even more devastating news caused by the government. Inflation rose to 7.7% in May. This included a 12% rise in the price of gasoline and a 9.7% increase in the price of groceries: basic necessities for working families in my riding.

When will the Liberal-NDP government finally acknowledge that their plan to pour gasoline on the fire with their out-of-control, excessive spending is actually hurting Canadians?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

University—Rosedale Ontario

Liberal

Chrystia Freeland LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives really need to pick a lane when it comes to economic policy. Half of the time we hear them proposing tax expenditures, and then the other half of the time they accuse us of spending too much money to support Canadians.

During COVID, we did support Canadians and that was the right thing to do. We had a policy that was relentlessly focused on jobs recovery. It has worked, because 117% of jobs were recovered compared with just 96% in the U.S.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:50 p.m.

Conservative

Tracy Gray Conservative Kelowna—Lake Country, BC

Mr. Speaker, that comment is completely out of touch with what people are going through.

The last time inflation was this high, my parents were buying our first family microwave, we had a prime minister with the same last name as the current one and Joanie Loves Chachi was the new sitcom. Our 7.7% inflation is not just a number. An Ipsos survey found more and more Canadians believe that their standard of living is decreasing. A dad in my riding said his family of five is now spending $400 a week on food, and he goes without meals so his kids can eat.

When will the government stop making excuses, stop blaming others and do anything to tackle inflation?

The EconomyOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

University—Rosedale Ontario

Liberal

Chrystia Freeland LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, we absolutely understand that the cost of living is a real challenge for Canadians. I would start by pointing out that having a job is the single most important thing for most Canadians when it comes to affording the cost of living. That is why an unemployment rate at 5.1% is really important, and it is something we work together to achieve.

I also want to say that I know Canadians are smart and I know that Canadians understand inflation is a global phenomenon. This is Vladimir Putin's inflation, and Canadians know it.

The EconomyOral Questions

2:55 p.m.

Conservative

Brad Vis Conservative Mission—Matsqui—Fraser Canyon, BC

Mr. Speaker, inflation might be over 7% nationally, but it is over 8% in British Columbia. These levels have not been seen since the last Trudeau was in office. Families in Mission—Matsqui—Fraser Canyon are struggling to put food on the table. They are struggling to pay $2.30 for a litre of gas and they cannot even afford to get to work, yet this government refuses to act.

Last week, Scotiabank's chief economist came out and basically said, “Government of Canada? Rein in your spending.”

If the Liberals will not heed the advice of the Conservatives, will they at least listen to one of Canada's top economists and stop screwing over Canadians?