Interventions in the House of Commons
 
 
 
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View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-18 11:32 [p.29277]
Mr. Speaker, one of the main concerns the Conservatives have raised is that if we have a carbon price, it could prompt a carbon-intensive industry to move to jurisdictions with weaker environmental standards, eliminating Canadian jobs and potentially increasing global emissions. The government is trying to address this problem of carbon leakage with output-based rebates to industry that keeps its production here. Another approach to this problem would be carbon border adjustments, extending the carbon price to the carbon content of imports and rebating it on Canadian-made exports.
I would like to invite the parliamentary secretary to comment a bit further on the importance of maintaining a level playing field between Canada and countries that do not price emissions.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-18 18:23 [p.29336]
Mr. Speaker, the CCF agrees to apply and, like the rest of the independent caucus, will be voting yes.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-18 18:32 [p.29339]
Mr. Speaker, the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the election of our first government in Saskatchewan, agrees to apply and votes yes.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-18 18:39 [p.29341]
Mr. Speaker, the government has approved the LNG Canada project, which of course entails a significant number of liquefied natural gas tankers on the north coast of B.C. I appreciate that the government has done its due diligence and put in place safeguards to ensure those LNG tankers can safely navigate the north coast of B.C.
Could the Minister of Transport explain why he does not have confidence that those same safeguards could not be made to enable oil tankers to safely navigate those same coastal waters?
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-17 13:38 [p.29172]
Mr. Speaker, while this legislation has been making its way through Parliament to ban oil tankers on the north coast of B.C., the government has approved the LNG Canada project, which would entail a significant number of liquefied natural gas tankers on the north coast of B.C.
I congratulate the government for putting in place safeguards to ensure that liquefied natural gas tankers can safely navigate the north coast of B.C. However, I would ask the member for Burnaby North—Seymour this. Why does he not believe those safeguards that would be adequate for liquefied natural gas would not be adequate to enable oil tankers to safely navigate those same waters?
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-13 15:11 [p.29069]
Mr. Speaker, universal pharmacare was part of the CCF's original vision for medicare. Yesterday's report estimated that it will save Canadians and employers $23 billion but cost governments $15 billion.
How much of that will Ottawa transfer to the provinces to make pharmacare a reality? Will that transfer be a block grant based on provincial demographics, or will it share the actual cost of covering prescription drugs in each province?
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-11 13:13 [p.28906]
Mr. Speaker, I agree with the Minister of Foreign Affairs that one of the best features of the new NAFTA is the removal of the investor-state dispute resolution provisions which had enabled foreign corporations to directly challenge our democratic laws, regulations and policies before secretive international tribunals rather than in the normal court system. Therefore, I am wondering whether the government will seek to remove investor-state provisions from Canada's other free trade agreements.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-10 13:55 [p.28801]
Mr. Speaker, we have heard a lot about cheaper telecommunications services in other countries. I would like to highlight that in Saskatchewan, we have affordable unlimited data plans because SaskTel is a Crown corporation owned by the people of Saskatchewan. If there is one element missing from today's otherwise excellent motion, it is public ownership of telecommunications as a means of ensuring affordable and accessible access to what the member for Windsor West correctly describes as an essential service.
I appreciate that we cannot move amendments during questions and comments, but I would like to ask the member for Windsor West whether he would be amenable to adding a paragraph (f) to his motion, directing the CRTC, the Competition Bureau and the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development not to approve privatization of SaskTel?
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-06 13:15 [p.28687]
Mr. Speaker, I have the honour of serving on the all-party steel caucus with the member for Hamilton Mountain. I would just invite him to speak to the role of the all-party steel caucus in advocating for appropriate safeguards for our steel industry.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-06 13:26 [p.28688]
Mr. Speaker, I have had the honour of serving with the member for Sault Ste. Marie on the all-party steel caucus.
As I think we all understand in this House, the legislation we are debating today would remove the moratorium, which would allow the government to bring in safeguard measures. I am wondering if he could provide some reassurance that the government's intention is to actually bring in those safeguards to protect Canada's steel industry and steelworkers from unfair competition from offshore steel, often produced in violation of internationally recognized labour and environmental standards.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-06 13:59 [p.28693]
Mr. Speaker, 75 years ago today, in the largest seaborne invasion in the history of the world, allied soldiers opened another front against Nazi Germany to help liberate occupied Europe.
The first Canadians on the beach were the Royal Regina Rifles. They landed at the most heavily fortified German point on the Anglo-Canadian beaches, facing artillery and 12 machine gun pillboxes.
Two of the regiment's landing craft were destroyed by mines. Fortunately, most of the Regina Rifles made it ashore with support from amphibious tanks. They cleared the beach and captured the port of Courseulles, where the Juno Beach Centre Museum is now located.
Today, Canadians are proud of the role our country played in the allied landings. The people of Regina will always remember what our regiment contributed to this Canadian victory.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-04 19:32 [p.28536]
Mr. Speaker, those of us who have had the privilege of serving in this 42nd Parliament have experienced some truly historic moments. We celebrated the 150th anniversary of this Parliament. We welcomed President Barack Obama into this House to speak to us. We witnessed the return of the CCF after half a century, contributing to the largest number of independent MPs in Canadian history. We served in the Centre Block and in this new House.
I was honoured to be part of that history, but my interest in politics has always been motivated by an interest in public policy, so I want to talk about some of the issues that I have raised in this Parliament, both as a member of the NDP caucus and as an independent MP.
During my time in the NDP caucus, I was the first MP in the House to call for federal funding to help restore bus service in Saskatchewan. I was also the first MP to call for a federal role in keeping SaskTel public. As part of the NDP caucus, I even managed to sneak in one member's statement advocating for the use of Regina-made steel in the Trans Mountain expansion. It has been even easier to advocate for Regina-made steel as an independent MP.
In the NDP caucus I tried to raise the idea of border adjustments to carbon pricing to ensure a level playing field for our Canadian workers. As members know, I got into some trouble with my party leadership for debating that issue, which brings me to my time as an independent. Of course, I have been more free to speak up for the use of Regina steel in Trans Mountain and for extending federal carbon pricing to the carbon content of imports while rebating it on Canadian-made exports.
I have been the only member of this Parliament to advocate for restoring VIA Rail service to Regina and for a federal investigation of the Regina bypass. I was the first member of the House to advocate for federal assistance to our canola farmers when China closed its market.
In addition to the issues that I have been proud to raise on the floor of this House, I also want to speak to some of the issues that I have been able to work on through committees.
In this 42nd Parliament, I was the only western Canadian MP to serve on the all-party steel caucus. We travelled to Washington to advocate for a Canadian exemption from American steel tariffs and I am extremely pleased to see that goal has been achieved.
I served as the NDP vice-chair of the Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates.
Some hon. members: Hear, hear!
Mr. Erin Weir: I hear some of my colleagues from that committee. I think it was a very co-operative committee and I actually went to the same high school as the chair of that committee. I think it is probably a rare thing in this Parliament to have a committee chair and a vice-chair from the same high school, Campbell Collegiate in Regina, in this case.
At that committee I was able to ask about the Phoenix pay system, even before it became a national scandal. I pushed to keep the government's feet to the fire on paying our federal public servants correctly and on time.
Our committee also conducted a major study on the future of Canada Post. Talking about Canada Post, one of my proud moments in this House was occupying the Prime Minister's chair during committee of the whole to speak up for collective bargaining rights in response to back-to-work legislation for postal workers.
The government operations committee also undertook a major study of whistle-blower protection in the federal public service. The report that we prepared was a truly unanimous report without any dissenting or supplementary reports from any political party. I believe it is a fairly rare accomplishment in this Parliament to achieve that level of agreement at a committee, so I am certainly very proud of that report.
When I became an independent MP, I had no guaranteed spots at committee. On the other hand, I had the freedom to try to intervene on any committee. Most recently, I have participated in meetings of the agriculture and trade committees to advocate for federal assistance to canola farmers, and I am pleased that the government has expanded the advance payments program to provide some assistance to those producers.
I also participated in hearings of the justice and ethics committees on SNC-Lavalin. I was able to ask questions of the now independent member for Vancouver Granville, Gerry Butts and Michael Wernick.
I do not believe that I would have been able to play that role on those committees as a member of the NDP caucus, so on reflection, I am pleased to have been able to spend part of this term as an independent MP. It is something I would recommend to other members of the House, especially those who might be on the fence and considering joining our growing corner of Parliament.
I am going to stop short of thanking the federal NDP leader for removing me from caucus and making me an independent, but I do want to thank all the local volunteers and donors who helped elect me in a very closely fought campaign.
I also want to say that the support of family, friends, staff and other people across Canada through difficult times has meant so much to me. I particularly want to thank all the former elected officials, national commentators and grassroots activists who spoke up for due process, common sense and local democracy.
Most of all I want to thank the people of Regina for entrusting me with the great privilege of representing them in Parliament, which has been the greatest honour of my life.
View Erin Weir Profile
CCF (SK)
View Erin Weir Profile
2019-06-03 15:06 [p.28415]
Mr. Speaker, a dispute over border security and tariffs has raised questions about whether Mexico will ratify the new NAFTA. By contrast, Canada and the U.S. share a secure border, similar wage rates and balanced trade.
If Mexico does not ratify, will the Canadian government amend the replacement protocol so we can ratify the new NAFTA bilaterally with our largest trading partner?
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