June 19, 2015

NDP

Robert Aubin

New Democratic Party

Mr. Robert Aubin

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his question and for his analogies, which always bring smiles to our faces or at least a bit of a smirk.

To pick up on his analogy about big drug companies, the big difference is that in their search for molecules, they sometimes find them, and while research aimed at finding a drug to treat one disease can fail, it can result in a drug to treat another disease. In the case before us today, for one thing, nothing is ever found, and for another, there is not much to fix because the parole system as a whole does not permit automatic parole for dangerous criminals after 25 years. That is all there is to it. Members of an organization not bound by politics judge whether applications can be approved, and their number one criterion is always public safety. Those people are not politicians. They are experts.

Parole is a conditional release. Offenders might not be granted parole, but if they are, it comes with conditions that they must fulfill for the rest of their lives.

As I said, the number one criterion is always public safety, not creating a climate of fear for the purpose of raising money.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Life Means Life Act
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CPC

Dave MacKenzie

Conservative

Mr. Dave MacKenzie (Oxford, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, before I begin, I would like to take a moment to thank all of my colleagues in the House for this last four years and a bit. This has been a great session of Parliament. I know a number of people have made a decision not to come back, but I would also recognize some of those people who have made decision to come here, in spite of ill health, to serve the country and their constituents. It has been a real pleasure to be here with them.

I rise today to talk about our government's highest purpose. What should that purpose be of any government? It is the protection of Canadians, ensuring our streets and communities, and our country are safe for honest, law-abiding people as we live, work and raise our families.

At all times, our government has endeavoured to ensure that our system of criminal justice reflects both this high purpose and the values and priorities of Canadians more broadly. For example, to give victims of crime a stronger voice we introduced and passed our Victims Bill of Rights Act. For too many years the welfare of the criminal was held up as a highest priority of criminal justice. This historic legislation, the Victims Bill of Rights, puts innocent victims back to where they should have been all along, at the very heart of our system of justice.

We have also changed laws regarding people deemed not criminally responsible for violent acts, ensuring that while dangerous offenders with mental illness receive the care they need, we also take care of the safety of the public.

Reflecting the values of Canadians also means that both the gravity of the offence and the need to protect Canadians must be considered in sentencing. That is why we got rid of the faint hope clause that allowed killers to apply for early parole. That is why when the criminal kills more than one person, under our law, judges can now impose consecutive sentences and take every lost life into account. That is why we have made it easier to deport foreign criminals from Canadian soil and have made it more difficult for them to enter the country in the first place. That is why we have made it easier to remove dangerous foreign criminals from Canada's shores and to make it more difficult for them to even get here in the first place. That is why we have toughened penalties, including creating mandatory prison sentences for many serious violent offences, in particular sex crimes against children.

When we say all of these things, let us be clear: we desire the rehabilitation of all criminals. However, certain criminals are too cruel and too dangerous to be released. When people break the laws and pay their debt to society, our hope is always for permanent rehabilitation. No one wants to see anyone degenerate into a lifetime of crime, but there are some criminals, the most dangerous and violent offenders, whose actions mean we cannot risk putting them back on our streets. However, as the law stands, sometimes we do.

Bill C-53 would end this practice, specifically for criminals who prey on society's most vulnerable, plotting kidnapping or sexual assault that ends in murder; criminals with such contempt for law and order that they kill correctional or police officers charged with that protection; criminals who so despise our values and our way of life that they carry out deadly acts of terrorism and high treason; and criminals whose crimes are so horrific that they shock the conscience of the entire community. The freedom of these criminals would compromise the freedom of everyone around them.

The suffering of the victims of such horrific crimes and the suffering of those who love them is bad enough. However, when the whole truth is known, they find out that the crime could have been prevented in the first place, that the crime should have been prevented but it was not, that the perpetrator was someone who could have been, should have been, securely behind bars. When that is discovered, at that moment their anguish, compounded by disbelief, becomes outrage, not just to them but to the entire country. Then we are all left to wonder what justice really means.

Canadians ask, rightly, why the most dangerous killers once in prison should ever be free again only to threaten our children, our families, our friends, our neighbours and our fellow citizens. It is very hard to argue with that, and our government has no intention of arguing with it. This sort of thing must end in our country.

The fact is that there are certain criminals who should never be allowed to walk the streets, where we and our neighbours live and work, or in the streets where our children play.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Life Means Life Act
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CPC

Barry Devolin

Conservative

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Barry Devolin)

Order, please. Regrettably, I must interrupt the hon. parliamentary secretary at this point. He will have 15 minutes remaining, if and when this matter returns before the House.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Life Means Life Act
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CPC

Paul Calandra

Conservative

Mr. Paul Calandra (Oak Ridges—Markham, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to thank the good people of Oak Ridges—Markham for the opportunity to represent them in this House.

As members know, my riding is the largest riding in Canada, but it will no longer exist after this election. It will be split into four different ridings, and as part of that redistribution, I will be losing the historic towns of King and Richmond Hill or Oak Ridges. I want to thank them for allowing me to represent them.

I wish all of my colleagues a very happy, safe, and healthy summer. It has been a pleasure answering their questions, as much as they seem to have enjoyed asking them.

I thank my great team, Nathalie James, Owen Macri, Jennifer Cagney, Jessica Plume, Amy Day, Jessica Baran, and Carole Halse for their work.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Oak Ridges—Markham
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NDP

John Rafferty

New Democratic Party

Mr. John Rafferty (Thunder Bay—Rainy River, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, this Sunday is National Aboriginal Day, and by happy coincidence I will not be in Ottawa this year but will have the privilege of joining my brothers and sisters of Fort William First Nation at Mount McKay in their celebrations.

In addition to the traditional celebrations, this year we will also reflect upon the findings and recommendations of Justice Sinclair and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. I would also like to personally wish Ontario Regional Chief Stan Beardy a happy and well-deserved retirement and thank him for his strong leadership over his many years of service in his many important roles.

With the election of a New Democratic government this October, Canadians will finally have a federal government that accepts responsibility for the immense injustices perpetrated upon our founding people by those who came later, a federal government that will make a solemn promise to ensure that these injustices are never repeated, a federal government that will finally work on a nation-to-nation basis with Canada's first peoples so that we can walk together, hand in hand, towards a better future.

Mino-giizhigad. Happy Aboriginal Day. Meegwetch.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   National Aboriginal Day
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CPC

Costas Menegakis

Conservative

Mr. Costas Menegakis (Richmond Hill, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, our government has improved the quality of life for my constituents in Richmond Hill in innumerable ways. We lowered taxes, improved the safety of our communities, invested millions of dollars to stimulate jobs and economic growth, and created a better life for all.

Investments to revitalize and expand town facilities can be found in all corners of the riding: at the Oak Ridges Community Centre, the Elvis Stojko Arena, and the Bayview Hill Community Centre, to name a few. Federal funding for GO Transit, the Viva rapid transit system, and major roadways is improving the daily commute of residents.

Thousands of seniors are enjoying the benefits of over two dozen new horizons for seniors programs, such as those at the Richmond Hill Social and Bocce Club, the Burr House Gallery and Potter's Guild, and the Oak Ridges Italian Seniors Club.

Hundreds of jobs are being supported through strategic investments to businesses such as Qvella, CrowdCare Corporation, and Rubicon.

The last four years have been very productive, and from the bottom of my heart I thank my constituents in Richmond Hill for the honour and privilege of serving them.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Richmond Hill
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LIB

Irwin Cotler

Liberal

Hon. Irwin Cotler (Mount Royal, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, Iran tragically executes more people per capita than any other country in the world. Moreover, Iran is engaged in a horrific execution binge that has resulted in 120 executions in May alone, while this month has seen an unparalleled wave of executions, with one execution every two hours.

All this is occurring while Iran is otherwise engaged in massive domestic repression, including the criminalization of dissent, the persecution and prosecution of ethnic and religious minorities, violations of women's rights, and the imprisoning of over 1,000 political prisoners.

Regrettably, the nuclear negotiations have not only overshadowed but sanitized this massive domestic repression, as witnessed by the deafening international silence surrounding it. The fact that a country is massively violating the rights of its own people, and lying about it, raises serious questions about the validity and veracity of its nuclear undertakings.

As negotiators seek a legal framework for the nuclear issue, the Iranian regime is in standing violation of its human rights obligations under international law.

It is time to sound the alarm and to hold the regime to account on both the nuclear and human rights concerns, to the benefit of both the international community and the Iranian people themselves.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Iran
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CPC

Royal Galipeau

Conservative

Mr. Royal Galipeau (Ottawa—Orléans, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, the vote last October 7 to launch air strikes with our allies against the so-called Islamic State will have been the most important vote of the 41st Parliament.

On June 9, it was reported that the Islamic State's Libya branch carried out another kidnapping, targeting 88 Eritrean Christians.

In February, jihadists had beheaded 21 Coptic Christians, showing once again their deepest contempt for the human race.

We can say unequivocally that the leaders and militants of the Islamic State are specifically targeting Christians, Jews, and even Muslims who do not toe the ISIS line.

In Orléans, whether at the Legion, on the street or by email, many constituents are telling me that the actions of the so-called Islamic State remind them of the rise of Nazism.

We must continue to support air strikes by Canada and our allies in this fight against evil.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Islamic State
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NDP

Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe

New Democratic Party

Ms. Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe (Pierrefonds—Dollard, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, today is World Refugee Day, and I would therefore like to salute the courage and determination of all those who have been displaced from their communities as a result of violence or danger. They face unspeakable challenges, which is why it is so important to give them a warm welcome when they arrive at our borders.

It is no secret: Canada is no longer the open, generous country it once was. The Conservatives have brought in a number of measures to discourage people from coming to our country for help and to deport them faster. In just over a decade, refugee claims to Canada have dropped from 40,000 to 10,000 a year, to say nothing of the lack of leadership shown by this government.

For instance, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, who took so long to announce his targets for the number of Syrian refugees to be welcomed, still has not given his department the means to meet his own commitments. I must also point out the violence and tense political situation in Burundi, which have displaced tens of thousands of people—and yet Canada continues to deport people to that country.

Canada can and must do more for refugees.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   World Refugee Day
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CPC

Colin Carrie

Conservative

Mr. Colin Carrie (Oshawa, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, it is with great sadness that I announce that on this past Sunday, at the age of 96, Mieczyslaw “Mitch” Lutczyk, a friend, Oshawa resident, Polish veteran, and war hero, passed away.

At the beginning of the Second World War, Mitch served in the 10th Motorized Cavalry Brigade in Poland. After being interned in Hungary, he escaped to France to rejoin his recreated brigade. After the fall of France, Mitch reached England and joined the 1st Polish Armoured Division , which landed on Juno Beach on D-Day with the 2nd Canadian Corps.

Mitch's bravery and courage while serving with the Polish army was so impressive that has been decorated by the governments of France, Great Britain, and the Netherlands. In 2011, the Polish government awarded him the prestigious Order of Polonia Restituta medal. Previous recipients of this award include Dwight D. Eisenhower and Simon Wiesenthal.

In 2013, I was honoured to personally present Mitch with the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Mitch settled in Oshawa in 1970 and was active in Polish-Canadian veterans organizations. His legacy is and will remain an inspiration to all of Oshawa.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Mieczyslaw “Mitch” Lutczyk
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CPC

James Bezan

Conservative

Mr. James Bezan (Selkirk—Interlake, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, for over 30 years, B'nai Brith Canada has monitored the levels of anti-Semitism across the country. Last week B'nai Brith published its annual “Audit of Antisemitic Incidents” for 2014.

Unfortunately, 2014 saw the highest number of anti-Semitic incidents ever recorded, at 1,627 incidents. That is a 28% increase over 2013. This surpassed the previous record of a 21% increase that was set 2012, with 1,345 incidents.

This only confirms what other organizations such as the Toronto Police Service have said, which is that the Canadian Jewish community is frequently targeted by hate crimes and that anti-Semitism is an enduring problem in our country. This is completely unacceptable.

All forms of discrimination are despicable, and the rise of anti-Semitism is particularly troubling in our society. I am proud to be part of a government that supports the State of Israel and the Jewish community here in Canada.

I ask that all members and all Canadians join me in denouncing anti-Semitism.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Anti-Semitism
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NDP

Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet

New Democratic Party

Ms. Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet (Hochelaga, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, I am Gabrielle and Maisy Odjick, women victims of violence. I am Carole Parent, who will have to make some tough choices because the Conservatives are refusing to save social housing. I am the one in six unemployed workers who do not have access to employment insurance.

Our social safety net is disintegrating. The gap between the rich and the poor is growing. Our children are the first generation to be less prosperous than the generation before them.

Bill C-51 attacks our rights and freedoms. Advocacy groups are up in arms. Environmental protection is falling victim to financial gain. The Conservatives are making decisions on paper while turning a blind eye to the actual consequences.

We need a government that reflects who we are and that supports us. I am the average Canadian. I am the proud NDP member for Hochelaga, and I am going to continue to stand up for Canadians' rights.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Social Programs
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CPC

Pierre Lemieux

Conservative

Mr. Pierre Lemieux (Glengarry—Prescott—Russell, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, no government has done as much as our Conservative government to support Canadian farmers and livestock producers. That is why we will continue to fight the unfair rules on country of origin labelling imposed by the United States.

Yesterday the Americans used yet another procedural tactic to delay the WTO process. The reality is that COOL is costing Canadian cattle and hog producers more than $3 billion in annual damages.

As the most pro-job and pro-export government in Canadian history, we have taken action to fight back against these protective measures, unlike the NDP, which is supportive of these kinds of trade barriers. In fact, the NDP trade critic actually introduced a bill to create Canada's own mandatory country of origin labelling, a law that would undoubtedly harm Canadian exporters and kill Canadian jobs.

Our Conservative government understands that to create jobs, we have to tear down trade walls, not erect new ones.

On this side of the House, we will continue to stand up for Canadian farmers and livestock producers and protect Canadians' jobs.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Food Labelling
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NDP

Denis Blanchette

New Democratic Party

Mr. Denis Blanchette (Louis-Hébert, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, as this parliamentary session winds down, let me tell you about the injustice one of my constituents is facing.

The son of a soldier, Edney Charbonneau joined our armed forces himself. After eight years of service, he became a federal government customs officer and investigator. He obtained a very high security clearance.

For his service he received commendations from Prime Minister Martin and Prime Minister Chrétien. Unfortunately, now that he has reached retirement age, Mr. Charbonneau cannot get his old age pension. Why not? He is not a recognized Canadian citizen. When his father was deployed to England during World War II, he married a British woman. Mr. Charbonneau, the child of that union, arrived in Canada at the age of two months.

Regardless of the circumstances—worthy of a novel in themselves—that led to this injustice, this man spent his entire life in Canada and paid all his taxes like a good citizen. Mr. Charbonneau deserves his old age pension, and this government should remove all the obstacles in recognition of his life's work.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Canadian Citizenship
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CPC

Jacques Gourde

Conservative

Mr. Jacques Gourde (Lotbinière—Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, taxes are all the NDP can think about. Unlike our government, which wants to lower taxes for hard-working Canadians, the NDP wants to raise taxes. Not so long ago, the NDP leader said that businesses should pay more taxes. When asked what exactly the business tax rate is, the NDP leader did not know. The rate he provided in his response was three points lower than the actual rate. As is often the case, the only thing the NDP believes is that everyone should pay more taxes. That is no way to create jobs and keep money in Canadians' pockets. We want to help Canadians, not hurt them.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Taxation
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LIB

Scott Simms

Liberal

Mr. Scott Simms (Bonavista—Gander—Grand Falls—Windsor, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, this week, our leader and our party presented a comprehensive plan that will bring about real change in Ottawa, a plan that Canadians can get behind.

As our party's democratic reform critic, I am proud to say that we are committed to ensuring that the upcoming federal election will be the last one to be conducted under the outdated first-past-the-post system.

Our plan calls for the creation of a special all-party parliamentary committee that will engage Canadians far and wide—not just those in provinces that have already discussed democratic reform, but in provinces where democratic reform has not been discussed.

This is just one element of our plan. It will help to modernize governance in this country while ensuring that Canadians get a political system that is open and transparent.

I would like to apologize if my statement is interrupting the heckles from the Conservative Party.

Finally, I would also say that this is what Canadians want and deserve: an open and fair government.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Democratic Reform
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CPC

Stella Ambler

Conservative

Mrs. Stella Ambler (Mississauga South, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, Canadians in Mississauga South want lower taxes, more jobs, and a growing economy. The Liberal Party leader offers none of that. His high-tax plan for Canadians will cut jobs in my community, across Canada, across every sector, and it will weaken the economy.

Just recently, the leader of the Liberal Party stated that he would introduce a $1,000 payroll tax on all Canadians. For families and seniors in Mississauga South, this could be devastating. He believes that taking money away from Canadians is what is best for them, that he can spend it better than they can. Well, on this side of the House, we believe in standing up for all Canadians and putting money back into their pockets.

The Liberal leader's reckless schemes make it obvious that he is simply not ready to be prime minister.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Taxation
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NDP

Guy Caron

New Democratic Party

Mr. Guy Caron (Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, these are finally the last days of the Conservative government, and Canadians are ready for a change. Our record is clear: while the Conservatives have chosen to give the wealthy billions of dollars in tax credits and spend public money on polls and partisan advertising, the NDP has presented a solid plan to help families make ends meet, which includes our national plan for affordable day care and our tax cuts to support SME job creation.

We have taken practical steps to make life more affordable such as putting an end to the tax on feminine hygiene products and successfully fighting the banks' and telecommunications companies' pay-to-pay fees. The winds of change are blowing, and on October 19 Canadians will finally be able to vote for a party that will defend their interests through good times and bad. That party is the NDP.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   42nd General Election
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CPC

Rick Dykstra

Conservative

Mr. Rick Dykstra (St. Catharines, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, we see time and time again that the leader of the Liberal Party is simply not ready to be Prime Minister.

This is the person who said that he admires China's approach to government. He said that they do it much better than most any other country in the world. He is the one who attributed Putin's aggression with Ukraine on a hockey game, and claims that budgets balance themselves.

Canadians know that the only Prime Minister, our Prime Minister, is a man they can trust to actually get the job done, by keeping taxes low, focusing on economic growth, and promoting job creation.

We spent ten years doing it; we will spend the next ten years making sure that Canadians have low taxes, job opportunities, and ensuring that the Canadian economy is stronger than anywhere else in the world.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada
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NDP

David Christopherson

New Democratic Party

Mr. David Christopherson (Hamilton Centre, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's Office has used its power to protect entitled senators—heck, it even orchestrated a cover-up for them—and throughout, Conservatives have defended corruption instead of defending the public dime. Now senators who abuse taxpayers' trust can simply pay the money back and avoid any consequences. It is no wonder that Canadians are ready for change and looking for new management.

If Conservatives would not allow a thief to simply pay back the money and avoid any consequences, why is he allowing senators to do just that?

Topic:   Oral Questions
Subtopic:   Ethics
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June 19, 2015