May 7, 2014

?

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   The Environment
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CPC

Andrew Scheer

Conservative

The Speaker

I think some members were a little premature in their applause. I will ask them to hold off until the member is finished putting the question.

The hon. member for Halifax has the floor.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   The Environment
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NDP

Megan Leslie

New Democratic Party

Ms. Megan Leslie

They almost got there, Mr. Speaker.

Jobs, growth, and long-term prosperity will actually be hurt if we do not act on climate change. The new American report tells us that the situation is alarming, yet inaction seems to be the central policy of the minister.

When will the government do the right thing and, at the very least, regulate the emissions coming from the oil and gas sector?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   The Environment
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CPC

Colin Carrie

Conservative

Mr. Colin Carrie (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the member knows that we are working with the oil and gas sector and working with the provinces to make sure that we get these regulations right.

Let us compare. She talked about the NDP's position versus our position. Our sector-by-sector approach is working. What does the NDP offer? It offers a job-killing carbon tax.

That is our approach versus their approach. The NDP is all tax and no action; our actions are getting the job done.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   The Environment
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NDP

Robert Chisholm

New Democratic Party

Mr. Robert Chisholm (Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, in Stephen Harper's economy—

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
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?

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
Permalink
CPC

Andrew Scheer

Conservative

The Speaker

Order. It is an easy fix. The hon. member has to refer to his colleagues by riding or title but not proper name, so if he can make that adjustment I think the House would appreciate it.

The hon. member can finish putting his question.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
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NDP

Robert Chisholm

New Democratic Party

Mr. Robert Chisholm

Mr. Speaker, more Canadians are living paycheque to paycheque, so when they go on parental leave or sick leave they cannot afford to be left hanging, yet 82% of Canadians who make a claim under EI are waiting more than 28 days before they even get a response. In my riding, I have heard from a number of constituents who are barely getting by while they wait for a claim to be processed.

How could the minister claim that cuts to Service Canada are not having an impact, and what is he going to do to correct this problem right now?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
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CPC

Jason Kenney

Conservative

Hon. Jason Kenney (Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to report that Service Canada is actually progressively reducing the wait times, and 68% of applications are being finalized within four weeks of the application being made, which is 28 days. We continue to move closer toward the targeted service standard.

I have just received a report from my parliamentary secretary, who is looking at further efficiencies that could be made so that we can ensure that people get their benefits in a timely fashion.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
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NDP

Robert Aubin

New Democratic Party

Mr. Robert Aubin (Trois-Rivières, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, we are witnessing the inevitable. As reported in Le Devoir this morning, and as the NDP has been saying since the employment insurance reform was implemented, the most recent assessment report indicates that only 38% of the unemployed qualify for benefits. What a sorry record.

Before the Liberals and the Conservatives took an axe to the program, 85% of unemployed Canadians had access to employment insurance.

When will the government improve the employment insurance program so that workers who have lost their job can get assistance?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
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CPC

Jason Kenney

Conservative

Hon. Jason Kenney (Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the figures that the member mentioned are in no way reflective of reality because they include workers who voluntarily left their job. The figures also include people who worked only for a few weeks and are not eligible for employment insurance.

In fact, more than 85% of unemployed people who apply for employment insurance benefits are receiving them. The program is there for the unemployed, so that they can find good jobs.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance
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CPC

Rob Merrifield

Conservative

Hon. Rob Merrifield (Yellowhead, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, our government remains steadfast in its support for Ukraine. We will not stand idly by while its sovereignty and its territorial integrity are being threatened.

We have shown strong support for the people of Ukraine and the NATO alliance with a commitment of six CF-18 fighter jets, the frigate HMCS Regina, and the participation of Canadian army soldiers in Exercise Orzel Alert in Poland.

Can the Minister of National Defence please update the House on Canada's commitment to NATO's reassurance measures and to the people of Ukraine?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   National Defence
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CPC

Rob Nicholson

Conservative

Hon. Rob Nicholson (Minister of National Defence, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, we have hosted General Philip Breedlove, the NATO Supreme Allied Commander, Europe. We had a number of productive meetings. The general wanted to make a point by thanking Canada for our contribution to NATO's Ukrainian reassurance package, describing our efforts as timely and important.

Canada will do its part to support our NATO allies and stand up to the Putin regime.

I again want to thank our brave men and women in the Canadian Armed Forces for the amazing work they do on our behalf.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   National Defence
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NDP

Hoang Mai

New Democratic Party

Mr. Hoang Mai (Brossard—La Prairie, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Infrastructure is digging in his heels and refusing to accept that without an integrated transportation plan, developed jointly with Quebec and Montreal area municipalities, his toll will create chaos on the roads.

Quebec has clearly shown that a toll on the Champlain Bridge will create major traffic jams on the other bridges. Quebec's economy is already losing $4 billion a year because of lost productivity caused by gridlock.

How many more billions is the minister willing to allow the city to lose?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Champlain Bridge
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CPC

Denis Lebel

Conservative

Hon. Denis Lebel (Minister of Infrastructure, Communities and Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, we are building this new bridge largely out of consideration for the economy in eastern Canada and the greater Montreal region. Things are moving forward. A new bridge will be built.

The request for qualifications for consortiums interested in building the new bridge closes today. While my friend keeps talking, we are getting things done.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Champlain Bridge
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NDP

Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet

New Democratic Party

Ms. Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet (Hochelaga, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, between the credible studies by the Government of Quebec and this minister's empty promises, which are baseless, the choice is easy.

The Conservatives claim to be pro-economy, but they are about to kill the economy of Montreal and Quebec. Clogging up the other routes into Montreal will have a devastating impact. Studies clearly show that the toll will be catastrophic.

If the minister has a study that proves the contrary, we would love to see it.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Champlain Bridge
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CPC

Denis Lebel

Conservative

Hon. Denis Lebel (Minister of Infrastructure, Communities and Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, construction is under way on a temporary causeway-bridge to bypass traffic from the existing Île des Soeurs Bridge precisely to keep traffic and the region's economy moving.

While they keep talking, we keep working. I thank all those who are working on the new bridge project. We will deliver it through a public-private partnership. There will be a bridge and there will be a toll.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Champlain Bridge
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NDP

Françoise Boivin

New Democratic Party

Ms. Françoise Boivin (Gatineau, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, we already know that the Conservatives just cannot work with the provinces and the consequences of that.

Here is another example. The Winnipeg drug treatment court may have to close its doors due to the lack of a clear commitment from the federal government to continue funding this program even though its effectiveness has been proven.

My question is simple: Will the minister promise to promptly co-operate with the Manitoba government and renew funding for this important rehabilitation program?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Justice
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CPC

Peter MacKay

Conservative

Hon. Peter MacKay (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the fact is that when it comes to addressing problems with respect to drug crime, when it comes to taking a comprehensive approach, we are the only party in the House that does so.

In fact, with regard to this pilot project that addresses concerns identified by the Winnipeg Drug Treatment Court that the hon. member mentioned, we have provided significant funding to this program over the years.

Part of the approach is to be tougher on sentencing for those criminal organizations that exploit the addictions of others for personal profit. It is a shame that the opposition continues to vote against those efforts to improve the safety of Canadians.

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Justice
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NDP

Françoise Boivin

New Democratic Party

Ms. Françoise Boivin (Gatineau, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, again Conservatives just refuse to base their decisions on facts, evidence, or science.

The 2012-13 reoffending rate dropped to just 16% because of the Winnipeg Drug Treatment Court. That is well below the percentage of the regular court system. That is a fact.

Conservatives love to hold press conferences to boast about being tough on crime, and here they cannot support efforts that have actually reduced crime.

Will the minister recognize the success of this court and commit, today, to renewing its funding, and stop blaming—

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Justice
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May 7, 2014