House of Commons photo


Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was territory.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for Yukon (Yukon)

Lost his last election, in 2015, with 24% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Safe Streets and Communities Act September 27th, 2011

Madam Speaker, it is critical. Canadians have spoken loud and clear about this. We cannot allow somebody who has done that to our youth, to our children, victimized anybody in a sexual manner, to be pardoned for that. That is not what Canadians want. That is not what Canadians said to us during the campaign. They gave us a strong mandate to ensure that does not occur. Those offenders cannot have the opportunity to run and hide from that, and there is no clear indication from any science in those types of crimes that they will recover and not repeat those offences.

Safe Streets and Communities Act September 27th, 2011

Madam Speaker, I think what the member is referring to is when the prosecution decides to go by way of summary conviction and not an indictable offence. It is comparing apples and oranges when we start comparing pot growers to people who are exploiting our children.

However, if we want to talk about the offence of growing five or six marijuana plants, the hon. member is making that seem as though, in this case, the offender innocently stumbled upon them.

There are aggravating circumstances outlined in the legislation that talk about when those minimum standards will kick in, and I will just note a couple of those. The aggravating factors include: for the benefit of organized crime; involving use or threat of violence; involving use or threat of weapons, by someone who has previously been convicted in the past 10 years of a serious drug offence; when they do it in prison; if they are in a position of authority and they abuse that. That is just to name a few.

This is a case where it is not just a hippy surfer growing a couple of pot plants in his basement. This is somebody who is making a criminal organization out of this.

Safe Streets and Communities Act September 27th, 2011

Madam Speaker, we heard loud and clear from victims across Canada during the election campaign in the spring that Canadians' priorities were to support victims and hold criminals accountable. That is what this legislation will do. Victims' organizations across this country have spoken loud and clear that all too often their voices are not heard in the justice system from the moment they become victimized. They are forgotten from that point forward. This legislation will ensure that the victims are heard from the beginning to the end of the process, that the people who need our help the most will get it, and that the offenders, who made the choice to victimize people, are held accountable for that, and that victims are supported in this country.

Safe Streets and Communities Act September 27th, 2011

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to rise in support of Bill C-10, the Safe Streets and Communities Act.

I want to start by talking about what the name of this bill actually means to Canadians. For a long time Canadians have watched the criminal justice system work in a way that was not making the safety and security of our streets a community priority. After all, if it had been a priority, how could previous governments stand by while dangerous criminals were released from prison after serving a third or even a sixth of their sentences?

In addition to all of this, Canadian victims, having already suffered so much, were not being listened to or included in the correction process of their offenders. This was not only worsening the feeling of victimization, but was also extremely insulting.

These are just some of the reasons that our government is so serious about delivering the right kind of changes that are found in the Safe Streets and Communities Act. It is important for the safety of law-abiding Canadian families. It is important for victims. It is important because we need to have a justice system in this country in which Canadian families can have confidence.

Since first taking office, we have worked to restore confidence in Canada's justice system and to fulfill our commitment to put law-abiding Canadians and victims first. We have taken direct action to fulfill that commitment through this legislation and by giving our law enforcement agencies the resources and tools they need to do their jobs effectively.

We have also moved forward in many areas to crack down on crime and to ensure that our neighbourhoods and communities are safe and secure.

Canadians have told us that they want a justice system that actually delivers justice and that protects our citizens without compromising the values that define our country. Again, I believe the legislation in front of us today does exactly that. It is yet another step forward in our commitment to keep Canadians safe.

There are a number of measures contained in Bill C-10, some of which my hon. colleagues have spoken about quite eloquently today.

Bill C-10 will help us build safer streets and communities by, for example, establishing new mandatory minimum penalties for certain existing offences related to child exploitation and increasing the maximum sentence to better reflect the reprehensible nature of these crimes.

The legislation before us today will also provide mandatory minimum penalties for serious drug offences when such offences are carried out for organized crime purposes or if they involve targeting our children.

One case where we repeatedly see this is with the targeting of areas around schools by drug dealers. I think all of us can agree there are few things worse than specifically targeting our children for criminal purposes. Deliberately trying to get kids hooked on drugs for financial gain is deplorable, which is why I am pleased to support the measures in Bill C-10 that provide mandatory minimum sentences for those who engage in this sort of illegal activity.

The Safe Streets and Communities Act also delivers real penalties for serious and repeat violent young offenders. Bill C-10 proposes amendments to the Youth Criminal Justice Act that would highlight the protection of society as a fundamental principle for the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

It will simplify pretrial detention rules to help ensure that, when necessary, violent and repeat young offenders are kept off the streets while awaiting trial. It will strengthen sentencing provisions and will reduce barriers to custody, where appropriate, for violent and repeat young offenders.

In terms of increasing offender accountability, Bill C-10 proposes very important reforms to the Corrections and Conditional Release Act to modernize discipline in prisons, and to add a requirement in law that each offender completes his or her own correctional plan. This would include things such as behavioural expectations and the meeting of court-ordered obligations, such as child support and victim restitution.

Bill C-10, among other things, will also enshrine victim participation in parole board hearings and will keep victims better informed about the behaviour and handling of offenders.

As well, the Safe Streets and Communities Act proposes amendments to the Criminal Records Act that would make certain people ineligible to apply for criminal record suspension, including those convicted of sexual offences against children, or those convicted of more than three offences. I want to address this point, specifically.

With this provision we are saying there are some people who should never be eligible for a criminal record suspension. As I said earlier, targeting our children is one of the most despicable forms of crime, and sexual abuse of a child is among the most heinous.

By including these provisions in the Safe Streets and Communities Act, we are taking action to ensure that those who have committed this terrible crime will never be able to hide from the harm they have caused to the most vulnerable in our society, our children. We believe this is an appropriate form and fair measure in face of such despicable crimes.

New mandatory minimum penalties are provided for seven existing offences related to child sexual exploitation and abuse for children under 16 years of age, such as sexual assault, sexual assault with a weapon, aggravated sexual assault, incest, and luring a child through the use of a computer.

The addition of mandatory minimum penalties to these offences will also have the effect of eliminating the use of conditional sentences or house arrest for these crimes.

As a father I am concerned about predators who hunt our children online and prey on their innocence.

As a police officer, I have looked into the eyes of too many victims, trying to provide comfort, unsure if they would find the justice and protection that they both needed and deserved.

As a corrections manager, I have been part of the rehabilitative process, the programming, hope, help and healing that can come from these institutions, as well as the human potential that lies within.

As an investigator for the safer community and neighbourhoods unit in my riding, I saw the degradation of neighbourhoods and the citizens' sense of safety and pride. I heard the loud and resounding voices of our communities to take action. I witnessed first-hand the revitalization of full neighbourhoods, community spirit and pride, and the citizens' sense of safety and security.

I also watched Habitat for Humanity homes take the place of drug dens. I watched the long but successful struggles of those battling with addictions finally rise above them.

It was through action, bold and tough decisions, that the first, not the last, step to a better life for all occurred.

Our government has the courage and the resolve to learn from our past, improve our present and perfect our future.

In closing, I hope that my hon. colleagues on this side of the House will also demonstrate the courage and resolve needed to keep Canadian families safer, stand up for victims and hold criminals accountable by supporting this bill.

Police and Peace Officers' National Memorial Day September 26th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, yesterday thousands gathered for the 34th National Police and Peace Officer Memorial on Parliament Hill to honour the men and women who have paid the ultimate sacrifice to keep Canadians safe.

Peace officers from hundreds of agencies across Canada and the United States attended to witness and pay tribute to officers who had fallen in the line of duty this past year.

One of those officers, Constable Michael Potvin, served as a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in the small community of Mayo in the Yukon Territory.

For Michael's wife Allison, brother Sean, mother Patricia, father Mark and, most of all, his little boy Jack who, sadly, he will never know, Mayo, the Yukon and indeed the country mourn with them.

For the family, friends and colleagues of Constable Garrett Styles, Sergeant Ryan J. Russell, Constable S├ębastien Coghlan-Goyette and Constable Michael Potvin, the four officers who died in the line of duty this past year, we are so very sorry.

We thank those fine young officers on behalf of Canadians for their service. Rest in peace. We salute them.

Preventing Human Smugglers from Abusing Canada's Immigration System Act September 23rd, 2011

Mr. Speaker, in his presentation, the member mentioned that some of the people on these ships are fleeing prosecution.

Is Canada the destination and is Canada a country that should providing safe haven for those people fleeing prosecution in their country? Is that the kind of immigration we want to establish?

The member said that people on these ships are fleeing prosecution. Is Canada, in his mind, supposed to be the kind of country that is providing a safe haven for criminals and criminal organizations trying to escape justice in their own countries?

Preventing Human Smugglers from Abusing Canada's Immigration System Act September 23rd, 2011

Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the hon. member would comment on why the New Democrats think Canada is still being chosen as a target for these ships.

The Sun Sea was a vessel, if we could call it that, that departed from Thailand, travelled halfway around the world and passed within miles of many other destinations that could have provided safe shelter. Instead, it headed for Canada, not only because it was the safest destination, I would argue it was because the smugglers knew we have a very generous immigration system.

Why would the member want to see Canada exploited for that purpose?

ArcticNet September 19th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to tell the House about our government's latest commitment to northern environmental protection, a five-year renewal of funding for ArcticNet.

Last week the Minister of Industry announced a $67 million contribution toward ArcticNet's research, which is focused on sustainable development, marine ecosystems, clean air and other challenges facing our north. Thanks to this commitment to ArcticNet, researchers and communities will be able to work together to better understand our northern environment, which is key to building a prosperous and environmentally protected north.

After years of neglect by the previous Liberal government, and despite the anti-development opposition of the NDP, our government, led by our Prime Minister, is acting to ensure that the north fulfills its true potential as a healthy, prosperous, environmentally protected and secure region within a strong and sovereign Canada.

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act June 25th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, I want to address one point made earlier by a member of the NDP that the government side had not mentioned anything about people who might take a different perspective in our ridings. I certainly have received emails in support of the back to work legislation. I have also received emails in support of the opposition's position.

One thing I heard earlier was that we were fixating on the suspension of time, June 23. The clock is still ticking and with every minute that passes, while our colleagues are making money, my constituents are losing money. I heard that there were two solutions, but there are actually three.

When will opposition members quit thumping their chests, produce solutions, get into committee of the whole to deal with the issues and put forward their solutions instead of their complaints, end this debate and get this resolved?

Restoring Mail Delivery for Canadians Act June 25th, 2011

Mr. Speaker, I want to quickly correct the record. The member said in his speech that members of the government have not mentioned the postal workers. I was here from 8 p.m. last night until 6 a.m. this morning, and I can say that we did hear members of the government speak the voice of postal workers. That did happen.

I heard an opposition member for whom I have a tremendous amount of respect say that it is a democratic right to hold up the House to speak that voice. We acknowledge that, but there is a democratic right and then there is just right, and this is not right.

It has been a productive debate, do not get me wrong, but it became repetitive at about 3 a.m. Now it is 24 hours later. Canadians find it frustrating.

Speaking as a new member of Parliament, it is very frustrating that the Liberal colleague who is sitting way down there asked a question that did not get answered. He asked a direct question. It did not get answered.

When will the opposition quit beating its chest at the expense of Canadians and end this debate by bringing forward its solutions or by voting for this legislation?