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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was jobs.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Mississauga—Streetsville (Ontario)

Lost his last election, in 2015, with 40% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Tougher Penalties for Child Predators Act February 25th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I know my colleague from Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing has had a long history in the criminal justice system prior to being elected in this place. I respect the work that she and her colleagues have done, particularly within the prison system.

We know that quite a lot of resources are expended within our prison system on the rehabilitation of individuals who are in prison. For some offenders rehabilitation does work, but for many it does not. We do our best, we try, but there are some individuals who just cannot be rehabilitated.

The recidivism rate for these individuals is high once they are released. The whole idea is to ensure that the people who are committing this kind of serious, heinous crime on children spend a maximum amount of time in prison where they can certainly access to rehabilitation services.

Tougher Penalties for Child Predators Act February 25th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to speak to Bill C-26, the tougher penalties for child predators act, now at third reading. This is a critical piece of legislation and we should all support its important objectives.

Bill C-26 would strengthen our existing approach to protecting children from sexual predators by building on numerous recent initiatives in that regard.

I am pleased that our government has implemented a number of important initiatives, including raising the age of consent to sexual activity, also known as the age of protection, from 14-years to 16-years; requiring those who provide Internet services to the public to report when they are advised of an Internet address where child pornography may be available to the public; requiring all of those convicted of sexual offences abroad to report to a police service within seven days of arriving in Canada; and creating two new offences prohibiting anyone from providing sexually explicit material to a child for the purpose of facilitating the commission of a sexual offence against the child, and prohibiting anyone from using any means of telecommunications, including the Internet, to agree or make arrangements with another person for the purpose of committing a sexual offence against a child. Those are just to name a few.

Unquestionably, our government has worked hard to protect children from sexual predators and it continues to do so, as is currently reflected in Bill C-26's proposed reforms. Our children deserve no less.

Available statistics paint a disturbing picture of sexual offences against children, both at home and abroad. Sadly, this type of offence has been facilitated by the Internet, which may play a role in the recent increases in police-reported child sexual offences.

The most recent statistics indicate a 6% increase in 2013 as compared to 2012. This includes a 30% increase in police-reported incidents of luring a child via a computer, an 11% increase in police-reported incidents of sexual exploitation, and a 21% increase in police-reported incidents of child pornography offences.

Furthermore, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, which operates cybertip.ca, Canada's tip line for reporting online sexual exploitation of children, provided the committee on justice and human rights with data that also caused deep concern.

Specifically, it has received 125,000 reports from the public since 2004, when cybertip.ca was launched. The majority of these reports related to images that are online and that depict children being sexually abused.

The centre noted that in the 2014-15 fiscal year alone, its child protection analysts assessed and categorized over 6,000 images of child pornography. Disturbingly, 69% of these images depicted children that were under the age of 12.

These numbers are telling us that more must be done. Bill C-26 would do just that.

First, it would increase penalties for certain child sexual offences, including child pornography, which has become a global scourge, as the statistics clearly show. Child pornography does not just harm the children who are abused in the images, it harms all children by sending the abhorrent message that it is acceptable for adults to use children for their own sexual gratification.

To better denounce and deter this crime, Bill C-26 would increase both mandatory minimum and maximum penalties for possessing and accessing child pornography. Moreover, Bill C-26 would make the most serious child pornography offences, making and distributing child pornography, strictly indictable with a mandatory minimum penalty of one year and a maximum penalty of 14 years. This is to reflect the severity of these crimes and the harmful impact they have on children.

The Supreme Court of Canada has commented on the pervasive nature of the harm caused by this type of offending in its 2008 L.M. decision. It said:

Finally, I note that L.M. disseminated his pornography around the world over the Internet. The use of this medium can have serious consequences for a victim. Once a photograph has been posted on the Web, it can be accessed indefinitely, from anywhere in the world. [The victim] will never know whether a pornographic photograph or video in which she appears might not resurface someday.

In addition to its proposed penalty increases, Bill C-26 would also require judges to impose consecutive sentences in cases where offenders are sentenced at the same time for contact child sexual offences and child pornography offences, and where offenders are sentenced at the same time for contact child sexual offences against multiple victims. No more sentence discounts for prolific child sex offenders. Every victim matters.

These are some of the bill's critical messages that serve the important objectives of denunciation and deterrence, which, as our Criminal Code apparently clarifies, are paramount in cases involving the abuse of a child.

That is not all. Bill C-26 also proposes to increase the maximum penalties for breaches of supervision orders, which impose conditions on suspected or convicted offenders, and are intended to prevent offending and protect children. We cannot ignore the fact that all breaches of such orders indicate a risk to children. That is why it is imperative that offenders are held accountable for breaching conditions imposed to protect children.

In a similar vein, Bill C-26 would also ensure that evidence of an offence committed while the offender was subject to a conditional sentence order, on parole, or on statutory release, would be considered an aggravating factor for sentencing purposes.

Offenders who reoffend, while subject to conditions imposed to protect those they have harmed, should be held to account, not just for the new offence but also for their violation of the conditions themselves. This is the appropriate way to effectively denounce violations of such conditions.

I am the father of two daughters, 15 and 11 years old, and thank God this kind of thing has not ever happened to them. I could not even imagine going through that as a parent and I could not even imagine what that would do them.

I believe these measures, in addition to the proposed new high risk child sex offender database also proposed in Bill C-26, address the dangers and risks posed by child sexual offenders.

I trust that these reforms will get support from all members of this House. I know that all members of Parliament are committed to protecting children from harm. Toward that end, I urge all honourable members to join me in support of this important legislation.

Tougher Penalties for Child Predators Act February 25th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my friend from Charlottetown for his intervention on this bill this afternoon, and I want to thank the members of the Liberal Party and the New Democratic Party for indicating their support for this bill. It is an important bill.

I am the father of two daughters, 15 and 11, and God forbid that anything should ever happen to them in any way that would be covered under this kind of legislation.

One of the reasons this bill is before the House is that we have seen many instances when this type of criminal conduct has not been taken seriously by the courts. The name of this bill is the “tougher penalties for child predators act”. It speaks for itself.

I want to ask the member if he believes that in the past we have seen lenient and unacceptable sentences. Does he believe that victims have not always been fully respected by the courts? Does he agree that this bill is designed to do just that?

Rotary International February 24th, 2015

Yesterday Rotary International celebrated its 110th anniversary. Rotary is 1.2 million neighbours, friends, and community leaders who come together to create positive, lasting change in our communities and around the world. As one of those proud Rotarians, as a member of Mississauga Meadowvale club, I want to express my thanks to all of Rotary's members in Canada and throughout the globe.

Since forming in 1905, Rotary has taken on some of the world's toughest challenges and has helped a wide range of international and service organizations, from the UN to Easter Seals, get started.

Of course, here in Canada, we know of Rotary's unwavering support for the eradication of polio, and through its partnering with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and our government, to making this happen.

Through the application of the four-way test to better our communities and our world, Rotarians give back and make a difference each and every day. I am sure that all members of this House will join me in congratulating Rotary on its 110th anniversary and in wishing it continued success for many, many more decades to come.

Lunar New Year February 19th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, last night I helped ring in the lunar new year, the Year of the Sheep, at Fo Guang Shan Temple, located in my riding of Mississauga—Streetsville. The objectives of Fo Guang Shan Temple are to promote the principles of humanistic Buddhism and to foster peace and harmony among all peoples of the world.

Venerable Master Hsing Yun, the founder of Fo Guang Shan, has guided this effort by providing educational opportunities, sponsoring cultural events, engaging in community service, and extensively writing and teaching about the Buddhist path of wisdom and compassion.

This beautiful temple located on Millcreek Drive is a wonderful asset to our community, and the work of Buddha's Light International Association members is both locally and world renowned. The Year of the Sheep symbolizes peace and generosity and reminds us to be well grounded and kind to others. May I wish everyone a very Happy New Year.

Gong hey fat choy. Gong xi fa cai. Chuc mung nam moi. Saehee bok mani badeuseyo.

Citizenship and Immigration February 18th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I attend many citizenship ceremonies in Mississauga. Becoming a Canadian citizen is a proud time when newcomers commit themselves to Canada and embrace all of the rights and privileges that come with being Canadian.

A very important step in joining the Canadian family is reciting the oath of citizenship. Can the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration please explain to this House why the government intends to file a notice of appeal in this matter?

National Defence February 16th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, yesterday we learned of more barbaric attacks against Coptic Christians by ISIL. Twenty-one Egyptians who had been held for weeks have reportedly been beheaded, in a video released yesterday.

Would the Minister of National Defence be able to update the House on Canada's continued mission to fight the savage ISIL death cult in Iraq?

Petitions February 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I am presenting a petition today on behalf of hundreds of Canadians who are calling on the Government of Canada to list the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization.

Business of Supply February 2nd, 2015

Just not right very often.

Manufacturing Industry January 28th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, our government understands that manufacturing is a high-tech, high-skill economic engine for Canada. Manufacturing alone employs close to 1.7 million Canadians, including many in my riding of Mississauga—Streetsville.

However, the Liberal leader told Ontarians last week that he wanted to transition away from a manufacturing economy altogether. Since coming to power, our government has made Canada a low tax environment for Canadian manufacturers, eliminated tariffs on machinery and negotiated trade agreements that will expand market opportunities and create jobs.

Jayson Myers, President of the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters said, “the programs the Conservative government has put in place...support manufacturing, and do it very well”.

The choice is clear. Our government is focused on establishing the right conditions for success: low taxes, global trade opportunities, investment policies and a skilled workforce.