Interventions in the House of Commons
 
 
 
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View Mel Arnold Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mel Arnold Profile
2019-06-20 10:11 [p.29464]
moved for leave to introduce Bill C-467, An Act to establish Royal Canadian Mounted Police Day.
He said: Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to have the opportunity to present this private member's bill today, seconded by my good friend and colleague, the member for Yellowhead. This initiative was started by a small group of constituents in my riding of North Okanagan—Shuswap and the support has grown exponentially across the region, the province and now the country.
February 1, 2020, will mark the 100th anniversary of the forming of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. For almost a century, they have been defending the law, “Maintiens le droit”. This bill would designate February 1 each year as Royal Canadian Mounted Police day. I recognize that it is the end of this 42nd Parliament, but I look forward to returning in the 43rd Parliament to ensure our national police force, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, are recognized for their 100th anniversary.
I want to thank members in my riding, Martin von Holst and Guy Bailey, for their incredible work on this and I look forward to moving this forward when we return in the fall.
View Paul Manly Profile
GP (BC)
View Paul Manly Profile
2019-06-20 10:20 [p.29466]
Mr. Speaker, it is an honour to rise today to present four petitions on behalf of my constituents.
The first petition calls upon the Minister of Veterans Affairs to remove any statutory limits on back-pay eligibility for the disability allowance and to work with individual veterans to achieve just and due compensation for a disability allowance in a timely manner.
View Paul Manly Profile
GP (BC)
View Paul Manly Profile
2019-06-20 10:21 [p.29466]
Mr. Speaker, the second petition calls upon the Government of Canada to cease the incarceration of those who suffer from drug abuse and to begin the rehabilitation of said victims back into society through treatment programs, as is done in Portugal.
View Paul Manly Profile
GP (BC)
View Paul Manly Profile
2019-06-20 10:21 [p.29466]
Mr. Speaker, the third petition calls upon the House of Commons to recognize that violence against women remains a critical problem in Canada and disproportionately impacts indigenous women, as reflected by the crisis of missing and murdered aboriginal women; that striving for pay equity and equal participation of women in leadership roles must be political priorities for all members of Parliament; and that a shifting cultural attitude toward women and gender minorities in our society requires structural changes in education and socialization.
View Paul Manly Profile
GP (BC)
View Paul Manly Profile
2019-06-20 10:21 [p.29466]
Mr. Speaker, the final petition is from my constituents and is about DND land. The petitioners call for the Department of National Defence to clarify the safe range of the DND rifle range for safe operation; to establish a schedule for public access to the land in the buffer zone of the range; to order a feasibility study to look at relocating the range to a more suitable, less populated site; and to engage in community consultation with recreational users in the regional district of Nanaimo, the city of Nanaimo and Snuneymuxw First Nation about future use of this land.
View Richard Cannings Profile
NDP (BC)
Mr. Speaker, I rise today with two petitions from residents in my riding of South Okanagan—West Kootenay.
The first petition points out that one in 10 Canadians cannot afford their prescription medication; that the current system benefits drug companies, not Canadians; that a universal pharmacare plan could save our country over $4 billion a year; and that we are the only OECD country that has a universal health care system that does not cover prescription drugs. Therefore, the petitioners call on the Government of Canada to eliminate the current patchwork system of care and to introduce a universal, comprehensive and public pharmacare plan that will reduce drug costs and keep people healthier longer.
View Richard Cannings Profile
NDP (BC)
Mr. Speaker, the second petition draws attention to the fact that the Canadian government declared the Sinixt tribal group extinct in 1956. The petitioners also point out that the Sinixt never ceased to exist as a tribal group and that their territory remains unceded. They call on the government to reverse the wrongful declaration of the extinction of the Sinixt tribal group and to take immediate steps to recognize the Sinixt as an autonomous tribal group within their traditional and ancestral Canadian territory.
I want to take this opportunity again, since this is the last regular day of this Parliament, to thank you personally for the good job you have done in often very trying circumstances. I appreciate it, and I think all Canadians do.
View John Aldag Profile
Lib. (BC)
View John Aldag Profile
2019-06-20 10:24 [p.29466]
Mr. Speaker, I rise to table a petition concerning the Burns Bog peatland, the largest raised peatland in North America, on the west coast. It is calling on the government to protect the species at risk that are on these lands.
While I am standing, I would like to take this moment to extend my heartfelt condolences to Diane Warawa and her family and to our shared community of Langley.
Mark was a very important person in my life. Prior to my entering politics, he was very supportive of my work and career at Parks Canada.
He did many things for our community. I know our community is going to miss him tremendously this Canada Day and beyond. It is indeed a sad day for this House and for our community.
View Peter Julian Profile
NDP (BC)
View Peter Julian Profile
2019-06-20 10:25 [p.29467]
Mr. Speaker, it is indeed a sad day. I know that we will have an opportunity to pay tribute in an hour or two, but I too would like to pass on condolences to Diane Warawa, the children, the grandchildren and all of Mark's family. It is a very sad day for the House.
I am presenting a petition on behalf of the Elizabeth Fry Society. A few hundred Canadians are adding their names to the tens of thousands who have tabled petitions in the House so far. The petition calls on the Government of Canada to extend benefits and allowances to children who are in irregular situations. In a case where a parent is incarcerated or homeless, or the child is being raised in foster care, the children do not have the right to access the same benefits and allowances other children do. This contravenes the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Tens of thousands of Canadians have written to Parliament in this regard. To date, the government's response has not been satisfactory. We are hoping the government will table a comprehensive response and end the discrimination so that all children can benefit from the benefits and allowances available from the federal government.
View Ed Fast Profile
CPC (BC)
View Ed Fast Profile
2019-06-20 12:05 [p.29467]
Mr. Speaker, my dear friend, our dear friend, Mark Warawa, died this morning. He passed away after a brief but valiant battle against cancer. He died peacefully, with his loving wife, Diane, by his side at Langley Hospice.
Members will know that Mark announced his retirement from politics in January of this year, well before his cancer diagnosis in April. He had planned, in his retirement, to continue a community service as chaplain to seniors, something that was very close to his heart. By the way, he was not going to be paid for that service; he was just going to contribute back to his community. Sadly, he did not live long enough to embark upon that new adventure.
On May 7, Mark found enough strength to deliver his farewell speech in this House, which was received with a standing ovation and many tears from his fellow MPs from every party in the House. On May 21, Mark made his last public appearance, waving from his car and greeting well-wishers at the Fort Langley May Day Parade.
For those who do not know, Mark began his public life as an Abbotsford city councillor, serving for 14 years under the tutelage of George Ferguson, Abbotsford's legendary and longest-serving mayor. Mark and I served on city council together. Along with former councillor Simon Gibson, we were called the three horsemen, because of our tendency to vote the same way on many issues. Mark and I thoroughly enjoyed our time on council, and we became lifelong friends, as did our wives, Annette and Diane.
Mark then moved to federal politics, winning the election as a Conservative candidate for the newly formed electoral district of Langley back in June 2004. He was re-elected five times, the last time in October 2015.
As MPs, we love to socialize together. What the public sees in this House is actually quite different from what happens outside of this House. We are all colleagues; we are all friends, and a lot of us socialize together.
On our side, there were five of us who called ourselves the MP5. We are all very interested in music and singing gospel music. As I mentioned in my earlier comments, the MP5 had the chance to sing at the National Arts Centre. That went okay, but members should know that of all our repertoire, there was one song that was Mark's favourite, and it began with the line, “I woke up this morning feeling fine.” This morning, Mark Warawa woke up feeling extra fine.
Mark loved this place and what this place represents, the heart of our democracy and the place where serious national issues are debated without fear of recrimination. He also loved his MP colleagues and respected the role we all play in defending a free and democratic society. Indeed, he loved to promote these values around the world. It was actually only a few months ago that Mark, as a Ukrainian Canadian, served as an official election monitor in the Ukrainian elections. Sadly, he had to return to Canada early because of his illness.
I know he was dearly loved by those who work in this House. In fact, if there was an award for the kindest MP in the House, I am guessing he would have won that award. However, if we had asked Mark what the most important thing in his life was, he would have said it was his deep and abiding faith in God's providence and hand on his life.
Mark embraced his journey with cancer as he did most things, with dignity and grace, with courage and hope, with an open heart and lots of prayer. He was a passionate Christ follower and loved Jesus with all his heart and soul. That is what he would have wanted us to have known and remembered him for.
Mark was a devoted husband to his wife of 46 years, Diane, and father to their five children: Jonathan, Ryan, Nathan, Eric and Kristen. He was a grandparent as well to 10 grandchildren. Together we grieve with all of them, but not as those without hope. Mark knew where he was going and what his final glorious destination would be.
To all of the Warawa family, we say thank you. You shared Mark with us for so many years. Thank you for his service to Canada and for his commitment to promoting the values that all of us hold so dear.
Mark will be missed, but I know he is rejoicing in the presence of his Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
Mark, from all of us in the House, especially from your Conservative family, Godspeed, till we meet again.
View John Aldag Profile
Lib. (BC)
View John Aldag Profile
2019-06-20 12:12 [p.29468]
Mr. Speaker, I was deeply saddened to learn this morning of the passing of our colleague in this House, Mark Warawa, a man who proudly represented his constituency of Langley—Aldergrove this term and the communities of the Township of Langley and Langley City, or “the Langleys” as we call them locally, since 2004.
I met Mark and his wife Diane shortly after my wife and I moved with our family to the Township of Langley in 2005. I was a manager with Parks Canada based at Fort Langley National Historic Site. Mark loved participating in special events at the fort, fondly known as the birthplace of B.C.
Mark embraced the roots of our community and commissioned a period gentleman's outfit to wear at special events, including the community's May Day celebrations, Canada Day, Douglas Day and other events. The community always looked forward to Mark's Canada Day cupcakes, which he proudly served each and every Canada Day.
Mark loved participating in citizenship ceremonies at the fort, sharing the story of his family's journey to Canada and the opportunities that our rich land gave them, including to Mark personally, and his ability to serve in office on behalf of his constituents.
Mark was a huge supporter of the fort and attended every event possible. I got to know him and his love for our community through almost a decade of working together in a non-partisan fashion. I respected Mark deeply for his caring manner. Mark and his wife Diane were at as many community events as possible, and I always enjoyed encountering both of them around the Langleys.
On a family trip to Ottawa several years back, Mark insisted on touring my family around Parliament Hill. He staged mock media interviews with my three children. He introduced us to the excellent staff in the dining room. He proudly shared this place, and the honour it is to serve, with my family. The look in his eyes, of excitement, honour and humility, is a look I will always remember, and one that I have tried to emulate during my time in this chamber.
For the 2015 election, the Langleys were divided into two new ridings. I was elected to represent Cloverdale—Langley City. Upon my taking office, Mark reached out and helped my team get up and running. There were cases from before the election that Mark knew, and he helped my team resolve these files. He provided valuable advice to me on setting up offices in Ottawa and at home. He was a huge mentor in those early days.
We were able to serve together on the Special Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying as well as the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development.
I admired Mark's deep commitment to his personal beliefs and his faith. His trust in his Lord and God provided him much strength during his brief but valiant fight with cancer.
On behalf of the Prime Minister, the government and all my Liberal colleagues, I offer our deepest condolences to Mark's family, to his wife Diane and his five children, Jonathan, Ryan, Nathan, Eric and Kristen, to their spouses and Mark's 10 grandchildren, of whom he was so fiercely proud, as well as to Mark's entire Conservative family.
Thank you to Mark's family and to the residents of the Langleys for having shared Mark with Canada over these past 15 years. Mark will be missed.
View Nathan Cullen Profile
NDP (BC)
View Nathan Cullen Profile
2019-06-20 12:15 [p.29468]
Mr. Speaker, today I rise to join colleagues in paying tribute to a friend and colleague, Mark Warawa. I think all of us agree that we would have given anything to be talking about something else here today than Mark's passing.
It is such a tribute to Mark that there are so many of us here today, choosing not to head home to our own families, and that all parties are here, and independents, regardless of whether we often or even ever agreed with Mark on his politics and policies. I am including my Conservative colleagues in that. He was a man of such deep faith and conviction, and he held those convictions with such a degree of grace and certainty, which is sometimes too rare in our world.
Today was meant to be a day of ending, as we conclude this Parliament, as we reflect as parliamentarians on our time here, be it these past four years or for some of us many more years. It is also a day, by bad circumstance, that we are talking about a different kind of ending.
It is a privilege to stand in this place. Mark always saw that to be true for him, so much so that even as he was so sick, he was determined to come back and give his farewell address to the House, despite his doctors not necessarily agreeing with that.
I am honoured to speak on behalf of my New Democratic colleagues. Mark was an opponent, yet never an enemy. Our friendship was most unlikely. We come from different generations and opposite ends of the political spectrum on almost every issue, yet we found some common ground in the humanity we could share in this place. I think I can speak for many colleagues who also saw that humanity on display.
I do have to tell one story, though. I was reflecting this morning about one day when, in the heat of debate, I said something that really upset Mark. I honestly do not remember what it was. I guess I have one of those memories.
Mark came right up to me in my seat. He got right in my face and was really mad, almost on the edge of asking me to step outside. I was a bit shocked. It seemed out of character for him, yet, within minutes, he was back at my desk, apologizing and wanting to make things right. It is important to consider that I do not remember what we were arguing about, but I do remember the apology. I remember the humanity.
For him, I think politics was very personal, but he never made it personal, and that is a rare gift.
I was raised in the church. I do not claim to know definitively what a good Christian is, but Mark strove in every way to be one.
I also think we are talking a lot about family today, political family and Mark's family, Diane, Jonathan, Ryan, Nathan, Eric and Kristen. There are families we are born into and there are families we choose.
Diane and Mark were married for just a little less time than I have been alive. Mark, in his final comments to me, said, “I always thought of you as a son”, again, curious and somewhat unlikely, our friendship.
Today is about an ending. It is about mourning and it is about honouring. I join my colleagues and friends in honouring the memory of Mark, and I wish Diane and his entire family the very best and peace.
View Elizabeth May Profile
GP (BC)
View Elizabeth May Profile
2019-06-20 12:20 [p.29469]
Mr. Speaker and dear friends, the hon. member for Langley—Aldergrove can now be addressed by his real name, because he has passed from us.
Mark Warawa was a dear friend of mine, and I want to identify some things about my experience of knowing Mark, in expressing my deep condolences to Diane.
One thing I noticed right away about Mark is that it was Mark and Diane. There is a plane that leaves Vancouver to bring B.C. MPs to Ottawa every week, and sometimes I call it the school bus. If there was a spouse who was almost always there, it was Diane. I think she travelled to Ottawa with Mark more often than most.
I know how hard this is right now. As we know, Mark is in the arms of our Lord, and it is Diane to whom we send our prayers and deepest condolences, so she may have strength in this difficult time.
This is how I knew Mark. I was elected to this place in 2011. From 2006 to 2011, before I was elected, Mark Warawa had the title of Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Environment. I worked with him often. I talked to him often. Although we did not agree on policy, his personal commitments were clear. He and Diane had done many things in their own home: They had solar panels; they composted. He could go on and on. He really was committed to doing things in his own life to make this a better world.
He also created a local award in Langley for environmental heroes. It mattered to him. He did things in his own way. He never would have thwarted policies of his own party; I am not suggesting that at all. He was committed, and he took the time to talk to me and, as we have heard, always in respectful ways.
When I was elected, I got to know Mark in a whole new way. I hope Canadians will be happy to know such a thing exists, as we do not talk about it very much here, but the one truly non-partisan thing that happens in this place, every single Wednesday at 7 a.m., is that we gather in prayer. My brother from Battle River—Crowfoot looks at me and I am going to start crying. It keeps me going, goodness knows, to know that despite the fact that we may not agree on anything, we are able to love each other.
I loved Mark. He was so clear, focused and devoted to the Lord in his day-to-day life and, as we have heard from other members from other parties, in how he conducted himself in this place.
He had real courage. One thing we have talked about lately at the procedure and House affairs committee is how to reduce the role of the party whips in controlling what happens here. A lot of people talk about it, but in my eight years of experience, Mark Warawa was the bravest in standing up against a party whip. He told us that when he was going to give his Standing Order 31 statement, he was told by the whip he was not allowed to bring it forward. At the time, the Speaker ruled on that. Eleven other members of Parliament, including many members of Mark's party, stood up to agree with him.
I just want it remembered that Mark stood up for democracy in this place, when he could have been afraid, when he could have taken the easy route and not thwarted his party whip. He had confidence in the right of all members of Parliament in this place to speak to what was in their hearts and say what they wanted to say in their own 60-second opportunity every few months. He stood up on principle and asked for the Speaker to rule that his rights had been violated. That was brave.
Of many things about Mark Warawa's life, he will be remembered. As we heard from the member for Abbotsford, he was a community champion, working at the local level and municipal government before coming to this place. As the member for Skeena—Bulkley Valley so rightly said, he was someone known for his kindness. I also want him remembered for his willingness to reach across party lines.
There was a moment, and this is my last story, when a student from Langley contacted me. He was on an adventure in citizenship program. He said that he was supposed to have lunch with his own MP, but since he was not a Conservative, he wanted to meet me. I said to him, “Your MP is a great guy. I think you should have lunch with both of us.” I asked Mark, and he said, “Absolutely, let's both take our student to lunch.”
We had this wonderful, wide-ranging conversation about environmental goals. I could see this young high school student's eyes light up because he realized he did not have to be a Conservative to love his MP. He just had to know him and know that he really was doing the best he could by his own lights every day. Then, in a truly generous gesture, Mark picked up the tab. That does not happen every day, around here or anywhere.
God bless you, Mark. God, greet one of your wonderful spirits, a soul who has served you well. Give him eternal rest. Let light perpetual shine upon him. Thank you, Lord, that we came to know him and call him friend.
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
2019-06-19 14:31 [p.29386]
After a year of higher temperatures and more floods and forest fires, people across the country are feeling the effects of climate change. The decision to approve the Trans Mountain expansion is not going to help people deal with climate change.
The Liberals are spending more than $10 billion to expand a pipeline. Why are the Liberals not investing this money in green initiatives to build a secure future for generations to come?
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
2019-06-19 14:33 [p.29386]
Mr. Speaker, that is a ludicrous proposition, given that no profits are going to be made in this project.
The race to the bottom with this pipeline, between the Liberals and Conservatives, is taking us in the wrong direction. Instead of ending fossil fuel subsidies, the Prime Minister is buying pipelines. Instead of legally binding emissions targets, the Prime Minister is continuing with Stephen Harper's targets. Instead of building a new relationship with indigenous communities, the Prime Minister has stuck with grand symbolism. New Democrats are proposing a better way.
Why is the Prime Minister refusing to protect coastal communities, indigenous communities and our environment?
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