House of Commons photo


Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was conservatives.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as NDP MP for Châteauguay—Saint-Constant (Québec)

Lost his last election, in 2015, with 23% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Canadian Railway Museum Act January 28th, 2015

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-651, An Act to amend the Museums Act in order to establish the Canadian Railway Museum.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my colleague from Longueuil—Pierre-Boucher for agreeing to second this bill. I am particularly pleased to rise in the House on behalf of the people of Châteauguay—Saint-Constant in order to introduce my second bill, entitled An Act to amend the Museums Act in order to establish the Canadian Railway Museum.

The Canadian railway museum, known as Exporail in Saint-Constant, is the largest railway museum in Canada. Moreover, according to several museum curators, it is one of the best in the world. Given the pivotal role played by railways in the creation of the Canadian federation, I believe that it is important for Canada to have its own official museum dedicated to telling the history of the country and the role of trains in creating this federation. I would also like to remind members that in 2007, the House voted in favour of the 13th report of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, which recommended that Exporail be officially designated as the national railway museum and that it be allocated long-term funding.

Clearly, the current government has always refused to act on the motion and recognize Exporail as the Canadian railway museum.

The museum is in dire need of stable, predictable funding in order to maintain its collection. It would also be an important means of celebrating Canada's 150th anniversary.

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

Veterans January 27th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, we were all pleased to hear the minister tell us yesterday that veterans would be his priority. However, that alone will not restore trust. Clear answers and firm commitments are required. I will repeat the question I asked yesterday.

Will the government take concrete action, reach out to our veterans and reopen the department's regional offices, as our veterans are demanding? Yes or no?

Veterans Affairs January 26th, 2015

Mr. Speaker, we hope the new Minister of Veterans Affairs will not take the same path as his predecessors. Our veterans have been left out in the cold. They have been abandoned. They have been treated as though they were a terrible burden.

These men and women fought for us, and yet they often have to wait months or even years to access the health care they are entitled to.

Will the minister commit to taking concrete action to correct his predecessors' blunders, starting by reopening the Veterans Affairs regional offices?

Veterans December 11th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Veterans Affairs is totally out of touch.

For two years, he has been unable to forecast the needs of his department; yet, he has done nothing to correct the situation, despite a stern warning from the Auditor General, who told him that his data did not take into account the growing needs of soldiers with post-traumatic stress.

For the past two years, the minister has been laying off all kinds of staff and closing regional offices without knowing what the future needs would be. Now, he has to backtrack and rehire some staff.

It is high time the Prime Minister gave veterans a nice gift by dismissing this irresponsible minister.

Petitions December 10th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, today, I have the privilege of presenting a petition signed by dozens of my constituents who are very concerned about their defined benefit pension plans.

The petitioners are calling on the government to resist the temptation to authorize the conversion of defined benefit pension plans into so-called shared risk plans, which would reduce the benefits paid out to retirees.

The petition also indicates that most Canadians do not have a pension plan. The petitioners are therefore also calling on the government to expand the Canada pension plan.

Veterans Affairs December 10th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, I do not know whether the Minister of Veterans Affairs remembers Jenifer Migneault. One of the last times he saw her, he ran away so that he would not have to answer her questions.

Ms. Migneault's husband, Claude Rainville, is still waiting for services to deal with his tinnitus, which is seriously diminishing his quality of life.

Mr. Rainville clearly told me that the Conservatives are not just firing backroom bureaucrats. They are cutting essential services.

Why is the minister trying to save money at the expense of veterans like Mr. Rainville?

Veterans December 9th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives cannot just leave $1 billion on the table when our veterans do not even have access to the care and services they were promised. Nor should they close nine regional centres and fire 1,000 people who provide care and services to veterans while at the same time they give managers bonuses.

Will the Prime Minister finally realize that veterans have lost confidence in this minister, who refuses to admit his mistakes?

Veterans December 8th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister told us that cuts to Veterans Affairs Canada would affect only administrative services. That is completely untrue because administrative positions account for only 10% of the cuts.

The minister cut specialists who manage veterans' compensation, pensions, health care and rehabilitation.

Either the Prime Minister misled us, or the minister misled the Prime Minister by hiding the cuts from him.

Which of the two failed our veterans?

Veterans December 4th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister tried to have us believe that the staffing cuts would have absolutely no impact on veterans, saying that it was just administrative staff that was cut. That is not true.

The Auditor General's report clearly shows that the wait times have direct consequences on the health and quality of life of our veterans.

Cutting one in four jobs and closing nine regional offices clearly has an impact on the quality of services.

Parliament put $1 billion aside for this purpose. Why was that money not spent?

Veterans December 4th, 2014

Mr. Speaker, veterans no longer trust this minister who has repeatedly tried to mislead them. A responsible minister would dispense with the underhanded legal tactics, reopen the regional offices and rehire the staff in charge of helping veterans. He would invest in mental health without delay and he would apply the recommendations of the parliamentary committee.

Since the minister is doing absolutely nothing to help veterans, when will the Conservatives do something and dismiss this irresponsible minister?