Committee
Consult the user guide
For assistance, please contact us
Consult the user guide
For assistance, please contact us
Add search criteria
Results: 481 - 540 of 117604
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Chair, setting aside the bluster there, we continue to do everything we can to protect the health and safety of Canadians and facilitating smooth border crossings for all travellers. We have had all hands on deck, whether it is at airports or land borders. My colleagues and I have been working with border communities to ensure that they have the tools they need to facilitate safe and efficient border crossings.
Mr. Chair, the public health measures we have—
View Tony Baldinelli Profile
CPC (ON)
Whom have you spoken to, Minister? Have you spoken to the stakeholders? Have you spoken to the bridge commissions? Have you spoken to the tourism stakeholders?
My understanding is that the Liberal caucus was meeting recently in Niagara Falls, the Ontario caucus. Did they meet with any stakeholders to hear from them directly about the impact it's having on my community, yes or no?
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Chair, I know my colleague Vance Badawey is here and a member of the committee. He's been a proud and vocal advocate on behalf of the Niagara region, a champion for the Great Lakes, a champion for the communities who has been working—
View Tony Baldinelli Profile
CPC (ON)
Then why aren't you listening to him?
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
—collaboratively with our ministers, who have been working collaboratively with stakeholders. I have met with stakeholders. I've met with experts in tourism—
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
You have 10 more seconds, please, Minister.
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
—and we will continue to do everything we can to ensure—
View Tony Baldinelli Profile
CPC (ON)
Why does it take you months to respond to your own government agency that reports to you?
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
—safe and efficient travel.
It's unfortunate the Conservatives have never taken COVID seriously. It's unfortunate the Conservatives supported these illegal blockades that blocked our borders and had a massive impact on border communities, and have not apologized for it to this day.
We, on the other hand, are focused—
View Tony Baldinelli Profile
CPC (ON)
Minister, they're going to hold a parade in Buffalo for you. Their chamber of commerce is going to hold a parade for you.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Baldinelli.
Thank you, Minister.
The last five minutes of the first hour will go to Mr. Badawey.
Mr. Badawey, the floor is yours.
View Vance Badawey Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
It's an interesting meeting.
Minister, thank you, first of all, for being here today. It's good that you're trying to implement the business of good government versus the business of good politics, as we're seeing on the other side of the floor.
With that said, Minister, I know you have limited time left, but I do want to ask you one question with respect to flight delays. We are seeing similar flight delays, as mentioned earlier by a colleague, as well as cancellations occurring all over the world as well as here in Canada. Is it reasonable to say that these all have what we call knock-on effects on other countries? If so, what efforts, if any, are being made at the international level to better coordinate schedules to manage these very effects?
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
Indeed, the industry is highly integrated. As you stated, we are seeing similar phenomena around the world. When one corner of the world is experiencing congestion, other connected areas feel the impact. We also know that other airports are feeling similar challenges of labour shortages as we are recovering from COVID, and similar congestions.
To answer your point, yes, there are opportunities for us to work with international partners. By the way, Canada is the host of ICAO, the International Civil Aviation Organization, where there will be a meeting happening this fall, hosted in Montreal. We are all proud of the work that we're doing in hosting such a body. This would be one opportunity for us to work together with our international partners on learning together, sharing best practices, learning lessons, and working together on how we can improve the standards that the industry has around the world.
View Vance Badawey Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you, Minister.
I want to attach my next question to some of the comments from Mr. Baldinelli, which are somewhat radical in nature, but I do want to be very specific and more in tune with what the reality of what's happening here in Niagara actually is, in particular as it relates to the efforts that you and Minister Mendicino, as well as Minister Boissonnault, have made in the last few months in meeting with stakeholders here in Niagara to hear first the facts—not the rhetoric or the perception by some members of Parliament, but the facts.
To that, can you tell us what you've heard, for example, from Ron Rienas, the general manager of the Peace Bridge authority, from Tim Clutterbuck, the chair of the board of the Peace Bridge authority, as well as other stakeholders throughout Niagara Falls, Niagara Centre—my riding—as well as West Niagara and into St. Catharines? What have you heard and what are some of the efforts that you and other members of cabinet are making on behalf of those who express their concerns to you?
View Omar Alghabra Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Badawey, let me say that I read the emails that you send me on a regular basis. That provides me the information coming from the bridge on traffic and performance. It's great that we're seeing traffic continue to improve and increases in traffic at our border crossings, including the Peace Bridge and other international borders.
Second, I know that the community has been flagging the concern that they have. There are still some issues of awareness of ArriveCAN for many land border travellers, which are different than for air travellers. I have been taking that input, examining it on a regular basis, and working with our colleagues on making sure that we figure out what else can be done to improve the efficiency and the fluidity of these land border crossings.
I'm grateful for your work. I'm grateful to those who are on the front line. I recognize that there are some questions, and we continue to be more than willing to work with you and others on responding to these questions and figuring out what else we can do to improve the travellers' experience.
View Vance Badawey Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you, Minister, and thank you, Mr. Chair.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you very much, Mr. Badawey.
That concludes the first hour of questioning.
Minister, on behalf of all members, I want to thank you once again for your appearance, particularly given what you're battling right now. We wish you the best of health in the days and weeks ahead.
Hon. Omar Alghabra: Thanks, everyone.
The Chair: Colleagues, if it's okay with you, we will move directly to questioning, seeing as there are no opening remarks.
We will begin the second hour of questioning with Mr. Barrett.
Mr. Barrett, the floor is yours. You have six minutes.
View Michael Barrett Profile
CPC (ON)
Thanks very much, Chair.
Thanks to the officials for being here today.
Has ArriveCAN caused delays?
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Mr. Keenan, I think you're trying to speak, if I'm not mistaken, but we can't hear you.
Aaron McCrorie
View Aaron McCrorie Profile
Aaron McCrorie
2022-08-19 15:05
Apologies, Mr. Chair. Deputy Keenan's mike isn't working.
He was going to suggest that perhaps Denis Vinette from the Canada Border Services Agency could take this question.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Mr. Vinette, the floor is yours.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:05
Can you hear me?
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Yes. We can now.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:05
Okay. Thanks. I made a small technical adjustment to my computer.
Mr. Chair, I would still stand with the suggestion that Denis Vinette from CBSA answer this question.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you.
Go ahead, Mr. Vinette.
Denis Vinette
View Denis Vinette Profile
Denis Vinette
2022-08-19 15:05
Thank you for the question.
Mr. Chair, the ArriveCAN app is actually the vehicle for the provision of the medical information and public health information mandated through the order in council as issued by the Public Health Agency of Canada. Without the use of ArriveCAN, for which we receive the information 99.5% of the time in advance in air and in marine, and just over 90% in land, that information would need to be collected either by paper submission or orally for capture and input by a CBSA officer.
Without ArriveCAN, it would take a far greater time to process individuals than it currently takes. You can recall a period of time back in March and April 2020 when this was being captured on paper and we had significant delays at Canadian airports and land borders. It's been a very efficient tool to allow for the capture of that public health information.
Thank you.
View Michael Barrett Profile
CPC (ON)
Thanks for the response. I think that's a contrast from the experience that folks have. That's a contrast with what I'm hearing from frontline officers with CBSA in my community. That's a contrast with what we're hearing from our international partners, that this has dramatically increased wait times at the border for a supposed public health measure that is not keeping Canadians safe. If the purpose is simply to verify vaccination, and we're matching that of our American partners, they don't ask for a demonstration of proof. They simply ask the question.
I'm wondering if the officials would be prepared to table documents related to the continued use of ArriveCAN. I referenced in my questions to the minister the justification that was requested in the summer of 2021. I'm wondering if they could agree to table with the committee the justification for its continued use.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:07
Mr. Chair, is my audio coming through?
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
It is indeed, Mr. Keenan.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:08
Great.
I would repeat one point that my colleague from the CBSA made, which is that ArriveCAN is a tool for efficiently collecting information that the Government of Canada requires travellers to submit as part of its ongoing COVID protection measures under the interim order under the Quarantine Act administered by the Public Health Agency of Canada.
The second point is that we'd be happy to provide additional documentation. There's a lot of documentation on those orders, the rationale and how ArriveCAN contributes to operationalizing the high volume of people crossing the border.
View Michael Barrett Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you.
I would just say, through you, Mr. Chair, that it's very efficient; I've crossed into the United States several times. I'm asked by Homeland Security agents if I'm vaccinated, I say “yes”, and that's the end. It's still an offence to lie, so it seems excessive and redundant at best.
I referenced some documents, some court documents that had been reported on and that quoted one of the officials we have at our meeting today. I'm wondering if he's able to speak to whether it is standard practice for the government to create a policy and then ask for the supporting evidence for that policy after the policy has been created, on the eve of its implementation. Is that standard?
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:09
Mr. Chair, I'd like to start off with a key point on the premise of that question and then turn it over to Mr. McCrorie to further elaborate.
A really important point here is that I think the member is referring to media reports about the information filed by Transport Canada in a court case on the vaccine mandate. What the media failed to report was that Transport Canada tabled and provided extensive scientific evidence on the rationale for the vaccine mandate. That was not in the media report, but it was in the testimony, in the filings of Transport Canada.
We would be happy, if it would serve the committee, to provide a copy of that information, which was actually presented by Transport Canada in court.
The second point of context I'd like to provide is that throughout the two-plus years of COVID, COVID has not stood still. We have been evolving and adjusting the health measures at the border and in the transportation system throughout. In that process, we constantly seek updated information from the Public Health Agency of Canada. There's an ongoing process of pulling information in from the Public Health Agency of Canada as part of our work and using their expertise in health measures to guide the development of our measures.
View Michael Barrett Profile
CPC (ON)
Thanks for that reply, Mr. Keenan.
In tabling that information with the committee, it would be important for you to note if that evidence was provided to Transport Canada before the policy was made, or if the policy was made before the evidence was provided.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:11
I can answer that for you now.
Significant health evidence was provided to Transport Canada throughout the entire period of COVID, for months and months before the vaccine mandate, as well as after.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Thank you very much, Mr. Keenan.
I have a quick note about the audio. I am hearing from our clerk that you have not selected your microphone. I think that's the only step we have left.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:12
I apologize. I recognize how important this is.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
It's not a worry at all. We'll give you a couple of seconds to clear that up, and then we'll move on to Mr. Chahal.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:12
How about now?
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
Perfect.
Thank you so much, Mr. Keenan.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:12
Mr. Chair, thank you for your patience on this. I apologize.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
No worries at all, Mr. Keenan.
Next we have Mr. Chahal.
Mr. Chahal, the floor is yours. You have six minutes.
View George Chahal Profile
Lib. (AB)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Thank you to all the witnesses for joining us today, and the minister for taking time out of his schedule to do so as well. I hope he is feeling better and wish him a quick recovery.
I've been to a number of airports over the last few months, and some have been busy. Maybe I haven't had the same experiences as others. My experience has been great at all the airports I've been through.
I went through Toronto Pearson just last week. I was telling friends and family, as they thought I was going to be delayed, that I was through the lineups and security in under five minutes. I was really impressed with the great work that officials were doing there at security helping to process travellers through. My experience was great, quick and efficient.
I know other airports across the country have had challenges. My travels mostly go through the Calgary airport and I've never had to wait very long. As there are some particular problems at some of our major airports, how have the Calgary and Edmonton airports been doing when it comes to traffic and passenger movement?
Mr. Keenan, maybe you would like to answer this.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:14
Sure. I'd say two things.
In terms of Calgary, first, interestingly enough, Calgary has had a really strong rebound in traffic. The Canadian air travel system has gone from a very low level, as the minister indicated, to 81% of what you would normally see in a busy summer. As of last week, Calgary was up to 86%, so it was a little heavy.
In terms of security screening at the Calgary airport, as the minister indicated, there were challenges in security screening and other areas adjusting to the rapid growth. Calgary shared in that experience but actually its numbers were pretty good.
I'd turn it over to our CATSA colleagues, and the CBSA may wish to comment on this, but both on CBSA processing on arrivals and on security screening, Calgary is doing a little better than the average of the top four airports. There is variation airport by airport, but Calgary tends to be on the positive side.
View George Chahal Profile
Lib. (AB)
Thank you for that.
Maybe I'll jump to the CBSA and Mr. Vinette for comment. We've had this conversation, but please add to what Mr. Keenan has just stated. A lot of the challenges I've been hearing are about staffing shortages at the U.S. customs and border security, on that end. Can you tell me and the committee what you've observed and how that's affecting operations at our airports?
Denis Vinette
View Denis Vinette Profile
Denis Vinette
2022-08-19 15:15
Regrettably, I can't speak to the U.S. pre-clearance operations. I know Public Safety is heavily engaged with their Department of Homeland Security counterparts, as well as Transport Canada, and the CBSA to a much lesser extent, just to speak to the interest and what we have seen in terms of the capacity being sought in restoring air transportation.
This is a question for either our Transport Canada colleagues or our Public Safety colleagues, who aren't here today. My apologies.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:16
If I could add briefly to what Denis just said, it's exactly that. We've seen that all airports and all agencies around the world have been struggling to adjust to this big increase in traffic. The sharp increase in Canada has CBSA struggling to adjust. They've had some amazing progress at Pearson, and we now have the customs hall at Pearson flowing much better than it was a month or two ago.
CBP and the pre-clearance in Montreal and Toronto.... There are some issues with backups, particularly in early morning flights going out of those two airports into the U.S., in terms of the CBP's processing capacity. You see that it has even affected the CATSA numbers in Toronto and Montreal. The longest waits you see at CATSA are actually for those pre-clearance lines, because CATSA has to slow down to avoid putting too many people into the waiting room of the U.S. CBP.
We are working with our American counterparts and colleagues. They're engaged with us, and we're working together to seek solutions so we can get the throughput through CBP and the pre-clearance in Toronto and Montreal higher, consistent with the demand to travel between Canada and the U.S.
View George Chahal Profile
Lib. (AB)
Thank you for clarifying that. I think that's helpful for everybody listening today, as many of those challenges are in working with our neighbours in clearance and pre-clearance when going to the U.S.
For the next question, I want to go to Ms. Lutfallah from PHAC.
My question is about masking. Does the rationale for masking still apply? Could you provide some comments on that? We've seen over the last number of years a conversation on masking. We saw, early on in Alberta, a lack of action by many prominent Conservatives on the issue of implementing masking, and cities taking it into their own hands to do so to protect their citizens.
I want to know, from a public health perspective, the rationale for requiring masking. Does it still apply?
Jennifer Lutfallah
View Jennifer Lutfallah Profile
Jennifer Lutfallah
2022-08-19 15:18
Are you referring to masking within the context of flights?
Jennifer Lutfallah
View Jennifer Lutfallah Profile
Jennifer Lutfallah
2022-08-19 15:19
Okay. I'm going to pass this on to my Transport Canada colleagues, but I would point out that we have assessed masking, and obviously it is a public health measure that would protect you as an individual, as well as people around you, by creating a barrier for any exchange of fluids in conversations and so forth.
With respect to the regulatory regime for airlines, that would be for Transport Canada.
View George Chahal Profile
Lib. (AB)
Do you still believe that it protects folks from transmission—
Jennifer Lutfallah
View Jennifer Lutfallah Profile
Jennifer Lutfallah
2022-08-19 15:19
View George Chahal Profile
Lib. (AB)
—and that we should continue having masking as a protection for folks who are travelling?
Jennifer Lutfallah
View Jennifer Lutfallah Profile
Jennifer Lutfallah
2022-08-19 15:19
According to the advice that has been.... I'm sorry, but I'm getting a lot of feedback. Can you hear me?
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
We can. Unfortunately, there isn't time left, however, for the response.
Jennifer Lutfallah
View Jennifer Lutfallah Profile
Jennifer Lutfallah
2022-08-19 15:20
I'm sorry.
View Peter Schiefke Profile
Lib. (QC)
No, that's okay.
Thank you, Mr. Chahal.
Mr. Barsalou‑Duval, you have the floor for six minutes.
View Xavier Barsalou-Duval Profile
BQ (QC)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Mr. Keenan, I imagine that data is compiled on ArriveCAN app use. You mentioned that 97% or 99% of people use it.
Do you also compile data on bugs, issues and the nature of those bugs and issues? Do you have any data indicating whether those issues are being resolved, how much time that takes and the impact of those issues?
If those data do exist, I think it would be appropriate to forward them to the committee.
Michael Keenan
View Michael Keenan Profile
Michael Keenan
2022-08-19 15:20
I'm going to let my Canadian Border Services Agency colleague answer that question.
Denis Vinette
View Denis Vinette Profile
Denis Vinette
2022-08-19 15:21
Thank you for your question, sir.
Since the app was first released, it has gone through more than 80 versions to improve its usability and reflect public safety measures, which change with the various orders made.
We always ensure we conduct checks and tests with Google and Apple so everything is in order before the app is updated and made available to travellers.
We've kept a set of logs of issues that needed to be corrected following updates or recommendations regarding the app's usability.
Results: 481 - 540 of 117604 | Page: 9 of 1961

|<
<
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
>
>|
Export As: XML CSV RSS

For more data options, please see Open Data