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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was first.

Last in Parliament October 2019, as NDP MP for Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik—Eeyou (Québec)

Won his last election, in 2015, with 37% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Presence in the Gallery June 12th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, I am sure you will agree that respect in the House must be a priority for all members, and that includes the Prime Minister. During question period, the Prime Minister said that adopting the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples would be tantamount to imposing something on indigenous peoples in this country.

Will the Prime Minister rise to withdraw that insulting statement that suggests that there is anything wrong with simply respecting indigenous human rights in this country?

We are all bound by the rule of law in this chamber. To even suggest that the rights of indigenous peoples are subject to debate is troublesome, especially coming from the Prime Minister of Canada.

Indigenous Affairs June 9th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, we are talking about eliminating discrimination immediately.

We have a Prime Minister who claims to be a feminist and who says that a nation to nation relationship is his priority. However, the Liberal government claims it needs more time to conduct consultations before taking action on issues as important as fundamental rights. It is unbelievable.

I will repeat my question. If any other group in Canada had to deal with such discrimination, would the Liberals still be in the process of holding consultations?

Indigenous Affairs June 9th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, there is a proposal before us to remove gender and other discrimination from the Indian Act. This is one of the many long injustices faced by indigenous peoples in Canada. If one was to guess that with a self-proclaimed feminist Prime Minister it should be no problem, then one would be wrong. The Liberal government is arguing that it needs more time to consult before acting.

Are there any other people in this country we would need to consult before they could be entitled to their human rights? Because if not, that is racism

Business of Supply June 8th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, thank you for your indulgence. I would like to thank my colleague from Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie for his presentation. He has been very clear as to the government’s intentions.

Starting in 1984, and for two decades, I took part in various international forums and multilateral negotiations. This all happened even before my colleague was a teenager. There was a time when Canada was respected and listened to; it used to have some degree of influence with other countries, but no longer.

I find it hard to explain how, on the one hand, we can decline to participate in these negotiations, and, on the other hand, we can be trying to get a seat on the Security Council.

Criminal Code May 31st, 2017

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for her presentation.

I am extremely concerned about several aspects of this bill, particularly the need to educate people, especially young people, about the consequences of marijuana use. We need greater emphasis on this in our society.

Another aspect also worries me. Ever since this government announced it would legalize marijuana, we have been seeing greenhouses pop up in various indigenous communities for growing marijuana.

I would like the hon. member to comment on these issues, which are just as important as some of the other aspects or dimensions of this bill.

Indigenous Affairs May 29th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, over a year ago, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal found the government guilty of discrimination against first nations children.

The Liberals said that they had taken note of the ruling and promised to take action. However, last week, the tribunal was forced to issue a third non-compliance order against this government.

The government keeps telling us that it is investing, but the tribunal has confirmed that this is not the case. I repeat: the tribunal has confirmed that this is not the case. Why?

The Environment May 9th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, on April 21, 2017, the Government of Quebec decided to transfer the herd of woodland caribou from Val-d'Or to the Zoo sauvage de Saint-Félicien, despite public opposition in the region and the petition to that effect signed by over 14,000 people. Neither the Quebec government nor the federal government consulted the Algonquin people on this case.

What is the government doing for this endangered species? Has the Minister of Environment received a request from the Algonquin people to intervene in this matter?

Indigenous Affairs May 5th, 2017

Some progress perhaps, Madam Speaker, but boil water advisories have been added since the Liberals took power.

This week, Algonquin artist Samian denounced the Prime Minister's role and responsibility in violating the basic right to drinking water. Some progress is not enough.

When will the government stop making pretty speeches and guarantee all indigenous communities access to clean drinking water?

Budget Implementation Act, 2017, No. 1 May 4th, 2017

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his presentation.

However, I am always surprised at how he presents things. I get the impression that he is wearing rose coloured glasses when he brags about being part of a feminist government.

The government is saying pretty much the same thing about indigenous issues. It says it made a record investment, but that investment will likely not be made until sometime after 2020, even though the needs of indigenous peoples are urgent and pressing right now. They were urgent and pressing yesterday.

The hon. member says that this budget leaves no one behind. I would like him to address the fact that in every speech today, not one person has talked about indigenous issues or the investments in indigenous issues, which are quite paltry in my opinion.

Why talk about what is going to happen in 2020 or 2021 when the indigenous communities have pressing needs today?

Questions on the Order Paper May 1st, 2017

With regard to the announced Indigenous Languages Act: (a) which Indigenous experts, communities, leaders, and knowledge keepers have guided the drafting process and set the criteria and outcomes; (b) what is the timeframe and schedule of the drafting of the proposed legislation; (c) what criteria does the government anticipate will be used to determine appropriate funding levels; (d) does the government anticipate the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action No. 15 for a Language Commissioner will be included in the proposed legislation; and (e) does the government anticipate Indigenous languages will be recognized as official languages as part of the proposed legislation?