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Crucial Fact

  • Her favourite word was actually.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Scarborough Centre (Ontario)

Lost her last election, in 2015, with 33% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 May 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, we heard from credible witnesses throughout the testimony, those with law enforcement and security intelligence experience and those who deal with terrorism. Every one of the individuals who went before the committee agreed that the threat of terrorism is real, it is evolving, and we need to deal with it on an urgent basis.

The legislation before us has the safeguards to protect both the privacy and the freedoms of Canadians. This bill targets terrorism. It targets terrorists. Again, we are dealing with misinformation that has been pushed out by the New Democrats, whether intentionally or because they completely do not understand the contents of the bill. If we read the legislation, we see the safeguards are very clearly there, and I am very proud to say that I will be supporting this piece of legislation.

Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 May 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Thornhill.

I am very pleased to provide my views on the important subject of what our Conservative government is doing to combat terrorism. Terrorism is not some far-off problem for others to deal with. It hits us right here at home.

That is because the international jihadi movement has declared war on Canada and its allies. The members of that movement hate our values, our freedom, and our prosperity. In fact, Canadians have been targeted specifically for our values that make Canada the best country in the world to live, work, and raise a family. Tragically, we saw the most horrific manifestations of this in late October. Two brave members of the Canadian Armed Forces were killed in cold blood by jihadi terrorists. That is what brought about the legislation that is before us today, the anti-terrorism act, 2015.

I am proud to support this important legislation that builds on our strong record of protecting Canadians from violent terrorists. We have taken action to limit the ability of terrorist organizations to fund-raise within Canada, through the Criminal Code terrorist-listing process. We passed the Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act, which allows victims of terrorism and their families to hold state sponsors of terror financially accountable. We passed the Combating Terrorism Act, which makes it a criminal offence to travel overseas to engage in terrorist activity. We also passed the Protection of Canada from Terrorists Act, which modernizes the tools available to our national security agencies. This is a record of which Canadians can all be proud.

It is shocking but certainly not surprising that the NDP has opposed us every step of the way.

There are four key elements in the legislation before us today: one, this bill would allow for information sharing internal to the government; two, it would enhance the passenger protect program, known as the “no-fly list”; three, it would criminalize the distribution of jihadi terrorist propaganda; and four, it would give CSIS the tools to disrupt terrorist plots before they end in tragedy. These are very common-sense changes that would protect us from the real jihadi terrorism threat. On this side of the House, we know that this threat is real. We have heard it in witness testimony. It has evolved, it is growing, and it is real.

We have also seen attacks planned and carried out both in Canada and in other western countries. I would remind this House of the chilling words of the Islamic State:

If you can kill a disbelieving American or European—especially the spiteful and filthy French—or an Australian, or a Canadian, or any other disbeliever from the disbelievers waging war, including the citizens of the countries that entered into a coalition against the Islamic State, then rely upon Allah, and kill him in any manner or way however it may be.

That threat is very real, and we must take action to degrade and destroy this threat. That is why our government will not sit on the sidelines, as the Liberals would have us do, and why we are joining the international coalition to defeat ISIS. Credible Canadians know that we must take action to deal with this threat, specifically the action outlined in our bill, the anti-terrorism act, 2015.

Professor Elliot Tepper of Carleton University said:

Bill C-51 is the most important national security legislation since the 9/11 era.

[It] is designed for the post-9/11 era. It's a new legislation for a new era in terms of security threats. While it's understandable that various provisions of the legislation attract attention, we need to keep our focus on the fundamental purpose and the fundamental challenge of combatting emerging types of terrorism.

Professor Salim Mansur of the University of Western Ontario said:

Bill C-51 is directed against Islamist jihadists and to prevent or pre-empt them from their stated goal to carry out terrorist threats against the west, including Canada.

...the measures proposed in Bill C-51 to deal with the nature of threats that Canada faces, I believe, are quite rightly and urgently needed to protect and keep secure the freedom of our citizens.

Scott Tod, deputy commissioner, investigations, organized crime, Ontario Provincial Police, said:

Bill C-51 offers improvements for the federal police to share information among our justice sector partners, security partners, but more importantly and hopefully, with the community partners and government situational tables designed to reduce the terrorist threat and improve community safety and well-being.

It is clear that our measures would protect Canadians from those who wish to harm us.

The first duty of any government is to protect the safety of its citizens, and that is exactly what our Conservative government is doing. The anti-terrorism act 2015 would ensure that our police forces have the tools they need to protect Canadians against the evolving threat of jihadi terrorists. We reject the argument that every time we talk about security, somehow our freedoms are threatened. Canadians understand that their freedom and security go hand in hand. Canadians expect us to protect both, and that is exactly what we are doing with this legislation because there are safeguards in this bill.

The fundamental fact is that our police forces are working to protect our rights and freedoms and it is jihadi terrorists who endanger our security and would take those freedoms away. What is more, we will never apologize for taking jihadi propaganda out of circulation. In fact, if companies that provide website content hosting services or other businesses are profiting from this type of horrific material, they should seriously reconsider their business models and lack of commitment to the values we cherish here in Canada.

Across this country, businesses, large and small, depend on a strong economy, clear rules of marketplace conduct, dependable transactions, and secure data. The reality is that there is no profitability without a stable security environment, both physical and virtual. This legislation would strengthen our national security and would benefit businesses, as well as all consumers.

It is clear that our Conservative government can make the tough decisions necessary to keep all Canadians safe, and I hope that when this bill is voted on tomorrow night, all members of the House will stand with me in supporting this very important piece of legislation.

Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 May 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, once again we are hearing about the bill containing unreasonable search and seizure, which is absolutely not the case. In the NDP member's speech, we heard that this would give CSIS the powers to do whatever it wants. That is absolutely not the case. In fact, to inform the member opposite, right now law enforcement makes the decisions when warrants are required. Police have to apply for a warrant, and the same process would occur with CSIS.

I want to clarify for the record that, once again, the NDP is pushing out information that is inaccurate, whether it is intentional or whether it is simply because of a lack of understanding of the bill. With respect to the bill itself, there are multiple conditions that would have to be met for someone to apply for a warrant and, as well, the judge might place conditions on that warrant. So all of those safeguards would be in place.

Does the member believe that our national security agencies, including local law enforcement in his area, are incapable of determining when a warrant is required?

Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 May 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, once again, that speech proves that NDP members have either not fully understood the bill, perhaps did not read it, or they are intentionally misleading Canadians.

When I hear such things, that the bill contains the ability for CSIS to conduct warrantless searches and seizures, it is absolutely ridiculous. Actually, right in the bill, there is a requirement that CSIS would have to obtain a warrant.

In fact, we heard from many witnesses on this particular issue. One of them was Ray Boisvert, who is the former assistant director of CSIS. He talked extensively on the warrant process, and that it is one of the most onerous warrant processes of any of its kind. He also went on to say that, “My sense from reading the legislation is that those safeguards are protected and are further enhanced.”

Once again, we have a situation where NDP members are perhaps woefully misleading Canadians, whether it is intentional or because they just simply have not read the bill.

I would like to ask the member specifically if he could point to the page, the clause and the sentence so that Canadians can actually reference this bill and see exactly where he is misleading Canadians.

Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 May 5th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I can tell you why the NDP did not have a question about the statement he just made, and it is because the NDP has not read the bill.

It has been very clear since Bill C-51 was first introduced that there has been a lot of misinformation pushed out by the NDP, whether it is intentional or whether it is because of a complete lack of understanding. It is also interesting that yesterday one of the members of the NDP actually referred to the two terrorist attacks that took place in Canada back in October as very unfortunate incidents. New Democrats simply cannot come to terms with the term “terrorism” quite yet.

I would like to thank my hon. colleague for his commitment to keep Canadians safe. I would like to ask him how dangerous it would be if Canadians actually listened to the rhetoric from the opposition party instead of the credible witnesses that we brought to committee who had more than 30 years of experience in law enforcement and security intelligence and also those who have been studying terrorism for more than 10 years.

Public Safety May 4th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, as usual, the NDP is simply not listening to what the government has said. I stood up just a moment ago and told the member that we were pleased to approve the request for additional support to the community of Surrey to combat crime. Those constituents in his riding know that we are the only political party in this House that will provide the necessary funding, the legislative tools, as well as invest in crime prevention.

Again, we have passed 30 tough new laws to clean up our streets and put gang members behind bars where they belong. Those are pieces of legislation that the NDP has voted against. There are significant investments in the RCMP to ensure there are enough front-line police office in communities. In fact, we increased the investments to our national security and the RCMP seven times. That member voted against every single one of them.

Let us get back to what Canadians can expect. They know that with this Conservative government they can expect three things: legislative tools to keep Canadians safe, funding for law enforcement agencies, and funding for crime prevention as well.

Public Safety May 4th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, of course, our Conservative government has taken strong action to keep British Columbians and all Canadians safe. We have passed tough new laws to clean up our streets and put gang members behind bars where they belong. In fact, we have passed over 30 new tough on crime measures, including new prison sentences for drive-by shootings. Shockingly but not surprisingly that very same member, the NDP and the Liberals voted against these common sense measures.

We have also made significant investments in the RCMP to ensure that there are enough front-line police officers in our communities. Contrast this with the previous Liberal government which actually closed down the RCMP training depot because it did not want to pay for new recruits.

Canadians know they can trust our Conservative government to keep them safe, to provide the resources, funding and the measures necessary through legislation. They can also count on us, because we are pleased to approve the request for additional support to the community of Surrey to combat crime. Why? Because Canadians will not tolerate being held hostage in their own communities by thugs and criminals who are members of street gangs.

I do appreciate the member for Surrey North wanting to improve his community. However, I would like to ask that same member why he has not supported a single tough on crime measure that our government has introduced. Here he is standing in the House asking for support, but he has not supported a single measure that we have brought forward. He actually has voted against every single measure that we have brought forward to combat criminals, crime and keep gangsters behind bars. He even voted against making the youth gang prevention fund a permanent program.

The member mentioned funding for crime prevention. We have actually invested $2.8 million in his riding for crime prevention alone. Here we go again; he is standing in this House asking for resources, but he voted against absolutely everything this government has done to help his constituents.

I also agree with the member for Surrey North that crime is a big problem. It is why I am a Conservative member of Parliament, because we are the only party that can be trusted to keep Canadians safe. I would encourage the member to become part of the solution as well.

Anti-Terrorism Act, 2015 May 4th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my hon. colleague for his speech as well as for his work on the public safety and security committee.

Throughout the testimony, and the member was there along with me, we heard from very credible witnesses, some with extensive experience in law enforcement and security intelligence gathering, as well as those who have actually studied terrorism for more than 10 years.

I wonder if the member could speak directly to the credible witness testimony that we heard and why those witnesses thought this legislation was important.

Anti-Terrorism Act, 2015 May 4th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, after listening to the questions being asked by New Democrats, it is pretty clear that the only way they would support legislation is if we handcuffed our police and blindfolded CSIS. It is truly unfortunate that such misinformation has been pushed out from the opposition party on this particular bill. We are dealing with the very heart of our national security and the protection of Canadians.

The committee heard from credible witnesses on our side, some with more than three decades of experience in law enforcement intelligence gathering. The NDP side brought in people who basically said the sky was going to fall. In fact, some of the groups had appeared way back in the 1980s with regard to the first CSIS Act and, in 2001, on the first Anti-terrorism Act, all saying the same thing.

I am going to ask the minister if she could comment on whether she thinks the sky will fall, as it did not fall in the 1980s and certainly did not fall in 2001.

Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 May 4th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, I have never heard so much rhetoric about nothing. The member made a point of saying that it was so important to speak to the bilI, but I did not hear anything about the bill in his entire speech.

What is interesting is that the member said that we stacked the witnesses so we would have them all coming to committee in favour of the bill. The previous NDP member who stood up in this House said that there was only one witness at committee who actually favoured the bill.

Clearly the New Democrats have not read the bill. They did not watch committee. They did not see our credible witnesses who came, some with more than three decades of experience in law enforcement, intelligence gathering. Even with those who have been studying terrorism, every single one of them talked about the threat being real, that it has evolved and it is growing. The witnesses also talked about the need for this legislation to fill the gaps that have been identified by our security agencies.

I do not know whether I can ask the member a question about the bill because he clearly has not read it. It is not a laughing matter, but surely there are Canadians right across this country who are laughing now.

Could the member please stand in this House and indicate for Canadians, first, whether he read the bill. Second, why is the NDP intentionally pushing misinformation about the bill, or is it simply a lack of understanding?