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Crucial Fact

  • Her favourite word is regard.

NDP MP for London—Fanshawe (Ontario)

Won her last election, in 2015, with 38% of the vote.

Statements in the House

VIA Rail Canada Act October 16th, 2017

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-370, An Act to continue VIA Rail Canada Inc. under the name VIA Rail Canada, to amend the Canada Transportation Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

Mr. Speaker, even though VIA Rail is a crown corporation, it was given no clear mandate by the federal government. This lack of a long-term plan and direction has had adverse consequences for many Canadians. For instance, VIA can unilaterally end service on a given route without Parliament's approval, which affects thousands of people, especially in remote regions, yet Canadians should have the right to the highest levels of service, protection, and accessibility of travel that can be provided.

Therefore, I am pleased today to introduce a bill that would establish a mandate for VIA Rail. This bill would make it mandatory for VIA to offer minimum services, specified frequencies for those services and would require VIA to increase its level of service with regard to punctuality, and, very importantly, make VIA Rail's decisions to cancel services or close stations subject to approval by Parliament. Canadians must be able to rely on VIA's passenger rail service, which is an economic driver for many regions, but that economic benefit is dependent upon VIA's reliability and efficiency. Moreover, increasing rail travel has the great advantage of reducing environmental and financial costs.

It should be stressed that this bill follows on the great work of former MP for Gaspésie—Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Philip Toone, and an extensive consultation with stakeholders. I would be remiss if I did not thank Mr. Chris West and Mr. Greg Gormick of All Aboard St. Mary's for their invaluable assistance.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Employment October 5th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, the Firestone plant in Woodstock, Ontario has announced it will close its doors in 2018 and relocate to the United States, citing global markets. One hundred and seventy jobs will be lost, jobs that feed, clothe, and house Canadian families and sustain local communities. This is one more in a long line of closures that leaves southwestern Ontario gutted, with ripple effects that will take generations to repair, and still nothing from the government.

Do the Liberals even have a plan to prevent such devastating job losses?

Petitions October 2nd, 2017

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition signed by people who live all along the Thames River. As everyone knows, the Thames River is a magnificent heritage river that runs through my riding. These petitioners are very concerned that the Conservative government stripped environmental regulations that covered the navigable waters act, leaving the river vulnerable, and that the current government has failed to reinstate the environmental protections needed in order to protect that river. Therefore, they call on the government to support my private member's bill, Bill C-355, and commit to the protection of the Thames River by amending the Navigation Protection Act.

Petitions September 29th, 2017

Madam Speaker, my second petition has to do with protecting the rivers and lakes in this country.

As members may recall, the Conservative government stripped away environmental regulations through the navigable waters act and left thousands of rivers and lakes vulnerable. In my city of London, the North Thames River, the Middle Thames River, and the Thames River itself are at risk. This is a heritage river.

The petitioners are asking that the federal government live up to its promises in regard to environmental protection and support my Bill C-355, which commits to protecting the Thames River and amending the Navigation Protection Act.

Petitions September 29th, 2017

Madam Speaker, I have two petitions to present to the House today.

The first petition is from a group of concerned young women and men who would like the Government of Canada to support free prescription birth control. There are 15% of Canadians who have no contraception at all, and a significant number of Canadian women cannot afford contraception.

The petitioners ask the House to support my Motion No. 65, which calls on the federal government to work with the provinces to cover the full cost of prescribed contraceptives.

Automotive Sector September 29th, 2017

Madam Speaker, today the CAMI strike continues in Ingersoll, where workers' jobs are currently threatened with relocation to Mexico. The jobs that are at risk sustain workers' families and the region, and these good manufacturing jobs sustain this country. They must be kept in this community.

The loss of the Terrain production cost more than 400 jobs, and now a second line is at risk, yet the Liberals are still missing in action. These workers are standing up for all workers in this country. When will the Liberal government stand up for them?

Oceans Act September 29th, 2017

Madam Speaker, I want to thank my colleague for a very informative exposé of what happens in his riding, and the shortcomings of the bill. I had no idea about the amount of plastic and debris that is filling up our oceans. I wonder if he could tell us about the impact on the ecology, the ecosystem, and the various species that live in the ocean. What is the impact of this plastic on them and on our future?

Oceans Act September 28th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, I understand my colleague's concern in regard to moving ahead too quickly, but the reality is that Canada made a pledge. We promised that we would make sure that these protected areas were in place. We pledged 5% by 2017 and 10% by 2020. Having said that, I agree that this particular bill does not keep up to what is needed. I would call it a bit of greenwashing on the part of the government.

To get to the point in regard to the intent of having a protected area, we have seen the tragic death of many right whales in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. There is something terribly wrong there, and unfortunately, this particular legislation would allow the exploration of oil and gas in these very delicate areas.

Would my esteemed colleague agree that perhaps the government should take another look at this plan to allow the exploration of oil and gas in these areas and show some concern for a population that is endangered, such as the right whale population?

Petitions September 25th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, the second petition is in regard to the electoral reform promised in the last election. Canadians deserve fair voting.

The petitioners call on the government to do as it promised and ensure that 2015 is indeed the last federal election conducted under first pass the post. They want systems that include proportional representation, mixed member representation.

Petitions September 25th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions to present today.

The first petition is from a number of people in the wider London community. The petitioners are concerned about the fact that the Conservative government stripped environmental regulations that covered the Navigable Waters Protection Act, leaving hundreds and thousands of rivers and lakes vulnerable. In my community, the Thames River is an ecological jewel, and we want it to be protected. Unfortunately, the Liberal government has failed to reinstate the Environmental Protection Act.

The petitioners therefore call upon the government to support my bill, Bill C-355, which would commit the government to prioritize the protection of the Thames River, and certainly other rivers and lakes, by amending the Navigation Protection act.