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View Anthony Rota Profile
Lib. (ON)
It being Wednesday, we will now have the singing of the national anthem led by the hon. member for Timmins—James Bay.
[Members sang the national anthem]
View James Maloney Profile
Lib. (ON)
View James Maloney Profile
2021-02-24 14:04 [p.4487]
Mr. Speaker, it is with deep sadness that I address the House today to pay respects to a legend of a man from Etobicoke—Lakeshore.
Natale Bozzo came to Canada from Italy when he was just 15. He was filled with dreams and a passion for baking. His career began at Sicilia Bakery in Little Italy before he opened his own bakery in Etobicoke in 1969. SanRemo Bakery is now an institution not just in Toronto but far beyond.
Natale passed away last week after a battle with COVID-19. He was incredibly hard working. His passion was being at the bakery as he loved bringing joy to people through his food and his delicious creations. He was as tough as steel and yet had a heart of gold. He was a selfless individual and taught everyone he met to value everything, no matter how big or small.
To his wife Nicoletta, his three sons, Rob, Nicholas and Edward, along with the rest of his family, I send my deepest condolences, and on behalf of many, our heartfelt thanks. May he rest in peace.
View Philip Lawrence Profile
CPC (ON)
Mr. Speaker, the COVID pandemic has been a difficult time across the country, including in my riding of Northumberland—Peterborough South. However, today I want to take a moment to recognize local communities, often the guiding light in these very dark times.
Castleton, a local community in my riding, has built three beautiful outdoor ice rinks. Volunteers work from morning to evening to ensure those skating rinks are kept pristine for local children, their only thanks being the smiles of children.
I can think of no greater honour than to represent the wonderful community of Northumberland—Peterborough South and all the volunteers who work so hard to keep the light in the riding.
View Claude DeBellefeuille Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, a farming family in Sainte-Agnès-de-Dundee is using its expertise to put the riding of Salaberry—Suroît on the map. Today, I am pleased to inform members that Estermann farm ranked first in Lactanet Canada's top 25 dairy herds.
The Estermanns are no strangers to top honours since this is the third year in a row that they have received this award. This attests to the excellent care given to their herd, the overall health of their livestock and their innovative agricultural practices.
After immigrating to Canada from Switzerland, Thomas and Rita Estermann decided to settle in our community and start a dairy farm. Today, their children, Martin and Regula, are carrying on the family tradition and helping the farm to thrive.
I also want to congratulate the Lériger farm in Hemmingford, which ranked 15th for organic dairy herds.
When I rise in the House to defend supply management, I am thinking of farms like these, which do our community proud and make a huge contribution to the vitality of our cities and our towns.
View Shaun Chen Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Shaun Chen Profile
2021-02-24 14:07 [p.4487]
Mr. Speaker, Canada is celebrating the 25th anniversary of Black History Month this year with the theme “The Future is Now”, highlighting the transformative work of Black communities across Canada.
In Scarborough North, Tropicana Community Services has been at the forefront of building inclusion for the past 40 years by pioneering culturally responsive programming. The seeds for Tropicana were sown in 1980 when Jamaican-born Robert Brown saw a need to support disadvantaged youth and their families, specifically those in the Caribbean and Black communities.
Today, the multi-service agency remains focused on delivering inclusive services in such areas as counselling, education, employment, personal development and settlement. Most recently, Tropicana is helping to administer our government's supporting Black Canadian communities initiative, an investment of $25 million over five years to help organizations better serve Black Canadians.
I congratulate Tropicana on an incredible 40 years. I wish it many more decades of success.
I applaud and thank Tropicana.
View Soraya Martinez Ferrada Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Soraya Martinez Ferrada Profile
2021-02-24 14:09 [p.4488]
Mr. Speaker, last week, our government tabled its plan to reform and modernize the Official Languages Act. This is the first time the federal government has acknowledged that French is in danger, and we have a duty to protect it in Quebec and across the country.
Our plan is ambitious. We will support francophone culture by modernizing broadcasting and making CBC/Radio-Canada a flagship institution; by giving workers the right to work in French in private businesses under federal jurisdiction in Quebec and in other parts of the country with a strong francophone presence; and by working with Quebec to continue supporting newcomer integration in Quebec and French classes.
I am proud of all the immigrants who have helped make the Quebec nation great, people such as Dany Laferrière, Farah Alibay, Corneille and Kim Thúy.
As a proud political refugee and a lover of the French language, I say that the time has come to modernize our Official Languages Act.
View Doug Shipley Profile
CPC (ON)
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the tragic loss of Marky Ramolla. Marky was eight days shy of his 15th birthday when he was tragically taken in a snowmobile accident while riding with his father.
Marky played hockey in the Barrie Colts Minor Hockey Association. He loved his family, he loved working on engines and he loved his Bass Pro hat.
One thousand people attended Marky's celebration of life and 300 of them wore Bass Pro hats. These hats have become so popular that Bass Pro has donated almost 500 hats for a fundraiser, and Tim Viktil of Pro-Star Sports has donated the embroidery of Marky's jersey, number 96.
The fundraiser from the sale of the hats now helps kids play sports and funds a $500 tech scholarship in Marky's name at Barrie North Collegiate.
As the one year anniversary of his heartbreaking death passes, I want to extend my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Marky Ramolla. Please take solace in knowing Marky's name and impact will live on through his scholarship.
View Gudie Hutchings Profile
Lib. (NL)
View Gudie Hutchings Profile
2021-02-24 14:12 [p.4488]
Mr. Speaker, when we head east, nestled on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, we will find Newfoundland and Labrador, where we locals lovingly refer to Labrador as the “big land”.
The big land is known for many things and many people, but on February 7, the big land lost one of its finest, Keith Rumbolt. He was a son, a father, a brother and a friend to so many; a known fisherman for 30 years; a hard-working mayor; a community leader and a volunteer for everything for his area, especially the local volunteer fire department.
Keith cherished his family and friends and made a connection to all he met. His kind ways were so infectious. He loved the outdoors, was a master navigator, a skilled hunter and his happiest moments were doing the things he loved with the people he loved. He truly was a son of Labrador.
To his wife Cheryl, children Hailey and Colin, his mother Barb and siblings Nancy, Sherry, Bradley and our own member for Labrador, I know they all have wonderful memories to cherish. I hope they get comfort in knowing Keith gave so many wonderful memories to so many people. The big land has lost one of its biggest smiles.
May my friend rest in peace.
View René Arseneault Profile
Lib. (NB)
Mr. Speaker, in times of crisis like these, the people of Madawaska—Restigouche always give the best of themselves by helping others.
In that regard, I would like to acknowledge the work of a group of volunteers in my riding known as the “Anges bienveillants”, or the caring angels, who have made it their mission to help the community of Edmundston, which has been hit hard by the pandemic.
They deliver groceries to seniors. They make phone calls to comfort people who live alone. They will even clear snow off the vehicles in parking lots at health care institutions, so that health care workers do not have to do this after an exhausting shift.
For Valentine's Day this month, they set up rows of large hearts outside of nursing homes in the area hardest hit by COVID-19 and distributed coffee and doughnuts, a demonstration of love and encouragement for the residents who really needed it. In return, they enjoyed the happy smiles they got from our seniors, people who are suffering and our caregivers.
Thank you, caring angels.
View Jasraj Singh Hallan Profile
CPC (AB)
Mr. Speaker, the minister continues to brush aside legitimate concerns from fed up Canadians and their loved ones, who are rightfully frustrated and exhausted with the spousal sponsorship process.
Here are the facts. As of November 5, 2020, the backlogs numbered more than 50,000 applications for spousal sponsorship. Last month, it was reported the average processing time went up to 17 months for overseas applications compared to 12 months prior to the pandemic.
Every day I hear heart-wrenching stories of Canadians experiencing significant mental, emotional and financial hardships from being separated from their loved ones because of IRCC backlogs and lengthy processing times, and in some cases even leading to suicide.
It is beyond overdue. The minister needs to finally clear the backlogs and bring these loved ones back together again. The government was slow to close borders, slow with the vaccine rollout, slow or non-existent to declaring Uighur genocide and slow to reunite families, all of which are costing lives.
View Pam Damoff Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, inclusive employment is more important now than ever. Removing barriers to employment allows people with disabilities to enter the workforce, gain new skills and contribute to businesses and their communities. Companies that actively hire people living with disabilities create a positive work environment for everyone working there and actually improve their bottom line.
In my riding, my friend Curtis, who lives with autism, has been working on the front lines of this pandemic at Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital. The hospital's experience with Curtis has been so positive that two more people living with disabilities have now been hired, demonstrating the benefits of inclusive employment.
This Thursday, I will be the MC at a virtual open house with Community Living Oakville and Xplore Employment services, which will encourage employers to hire people with disabilities. This event will showcase the benefits of hiring people with barriers. I encourage all businesses in Oakville North—Burlington to sign up.
View Raquel Dancho Profile
CPC (MB)
View Raquel Dancho Profile
2021-02-24 14:16 [p.4489]
Mr. Speaker, today is Pink Shirt Day, a day to stand together against bullying. The pandemic has left millions of Canadians more isolated than ever, with many of us moving online to safely socialize. Unfortunately, bullying and harassment have also moved online, adding to the major mental health challenges already being faced by many Canadians, particularly children, during this difficult and unprecedented time. My heart goes out to the families who have suffered the loss of a loved one due to bullying and the Canadians who live with the ongoing trauma of being bullied. We must do more to protect our children and eliminate bullying, both online and offline.
Pink Shirt Day gives us the opportunity to raise awareness. It is also a reminder to stand up to bullies and to stand up for those who have been victims of bullying and harassment. I encourage all members of Parliament to work together to make sure that every Canadian can live free from bullying and harassment.
View Rob Moore Profile
CPC (NB)
View Rob Moore Profile
2021-02-24 14:16 [p.4489]
Mr. Speaker, my riding of Fundy Royal boasts great organizations like the Petitcodiac Sportsman's Club, the Shepody Fish and Game Association, the Hampton Rifle and Pistol Club and the Sussex Fish and Game Association. These are community hubs with engaged memberships of law-abiding New Brunswickers.
Unfortunately, it is Canadians like these that Bill C-21 will target, while violent gun crime remains largely ignored by the Liberal government. Conservatives want to target criminals, while the government would rather create them. Spending hundreds of millions of dollars to buy legal firearms from licenced owners will not make our community safer. The Liberal government wants Canadians to think it is concerned about safety, but it has just defeated a Conservative bill that would have cracked down on smuggling and possessing illegal firearms.
I will continue to speak up for the law-abiding firearms owners of Fundy Royal, and I firmly believe that Canadians deserve to have legislation based on evidence that will actually make our communities safer.
View Carol Hughes Profile
NDP (ON)
Mr. Speaker, as society struggles to find balance during the pandemic, it is clear that women have a difficult road to travel to recover from the crisis.
Given the greater loss of jobs held by women last year and the fewer options available to them, many women were forced to choose between their work and parenting. Last February, women accounted for almost half of the labour force in Canada. Since then, almost two out of every three jobs held by women have been lost.
By July, those losses had erased three decades of gains made by women in Canadian workplaces, while unpaid work, such as caring for children, increased.
In a few short weeks, we will celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future on International Women's Day. The challenges presented by this gender-based employment gap, which is being described as a “she-cession”, make it clear that we must focus on the “she-covery” to ensure the path forward is equitable.
View Louis Plamondon Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, another major architect of the Quiet Revolution has passed away. On behalf of the Bloc Québécois, allow me to honour the memory of Yves Martin and offer my condolences to his family and loved ones.
History will remember Mr. Martin as a founder of the Université du Québec network. Generations upon generations will continue to flourish as a result of the legacy of Mr. Martin's work to foster the intellectual enrichment of his nation. A sociologist by training, he was also central to the creation of Quebec's ministry of education and therefore the tremendous gains in education that have since enabled our young people to aspire to a future that lives up to their ambitions. Yves Martin was one of those bureaucrats who were fully devoted to public service and who laid the foundation of modern Quebec.
The Bloc Québécois also remembers his generous collaboration and, more broadly, his contribution to the sovereignist movement, alongside our greatest premiers. I thank Yves Martin for his dedication.
View Garnett Genuis Profile
CPC (AB)
Mr. Speaker, on Monday this House took a powerful step forward by recognizing the Uighur genocide. I want to thank all who were involved. I particularly want to recognize the role of the research done by Adrian Zens, the relentless advocacy of Irwin Cotler, the work of the subcommittee and of IPAC, and most important, the tenacious work of the Uighur community. This will be a hollow victory if it is not followed up with concrete actions by the government. The genocide will not stop simply because of our vote to recognize it.
Notwithstanding its abstentions, the government must now do the right thing and follow the will of the elected House of Commons. In a responsible government, the cabinet must align its decisions with the perspectives and priorities of the people's representatives. If we are going to be serious about promoting human rights abroad, then we must practise democracy at home.
The Conservatives will continue to call for the relocation of the Olympics, for meaningful measures to prevent the importation of products made by Uighur slave labour, and most importantly, for targeted sanctions to hold the perpetrators of this genocide accountable.
The experts have spoken. The survivors have spoken. Now Parliament has spoken. It is time for the government to respond.
View Darren Fisher Profile
Lib. (NS)
Mr. Speaker, today is Pink Shirt Day, a day when folks across Canada wear pink shirts to show others they are against bullying.
Back in 2007, Nova Scotian students Travis Price and David Shepherd noticed one of the students in their class was being bullied for wearing a pink shirt. Upset by what they witnessed, they purchased pink shirts and handed them out to their classmates to show their support for the student who had been bullied.
Bullying happens in many forms. Small acts of kindness can make a huge difference in someone's life. Wearing a pink shirt to show one's support is one thing, but I ask all members of this House and all Canadians to stand up against bullying each and every day. If we see someone being bullied, we should support them by speaking up or asking someone we trust to help.
On this Pink Shirt Day and every day, we should do the right thing and stand up against bullying.
View Anthony Rota Profile
Lib. (ON)
Before moving on to Oral Questions, I would like to do a bit of housekeeping and remind hon. members that Standing Order 31 allows for 60 seconds. I would ask that members try to keep their statements to that, as I have noticed some going a little over. These are all good messages, and I would hate to cut them off, so try to keep them to 60 seconds.
As well, although it is nice to see both sides talking to each other across the floor, I encourage hon. members, if they want to speak to each other, to please cross over to talk and then go back, because it makes it very hard for everyone to hear the questions and answers.
View Erin O'Toole Profile
CPC (ON)
View Erin O'Toole Profile
2021-02-24 14:23 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, 8% is the percentage of Canadians the Prime Minister now plans to have vaccinated by April. Eighty-five percent of Israelis are already vaccinated. Americans are vaccinating two million people per day.
Why does the Prime Minister think that 8% by April is good enough for Canadians?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:23 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, I have good news to share concerning vaccine deliveries in Canada.
In the week of March 8, we are expecting over 460,000 doses of Moderna, and in the week of March 22, we are expecting over 840,000 doses of Moderna, which means we will be receiving over two million doses in the first quarter, even more than was promised. In the first two weeks of April alone, we will be receiving over 1.5 million doses of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine.
We will continue to work every single day to bring as many vaccines as possible to Canadians as quickly as possible.
View Erin O'Toole Profile
CPC (ON)
View Erin O'Toole Profile
2021-02-24 14:24 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is announcing good news. What did Dr. Tam say on Friday? She announced, “For the next months we’re not going to have a lot of people vaccinated, that’s a fact.”
This means our country is extremely vulnerable to a third wave of COVID-19. Did the Prime Minister's slow approach on the vaccine rollout guarantee a third wave of COVID-19 for Canada?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:24 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, as of last summer, we started negotiating for vaccine contracts. We signed more contracts with more companies for more potential doses for Canadians than just about any other country.
We will be delivering, as scheduled, over six million doses by the end of the first quarter and 20 million doses into the spring. Everyone who wants a vaccine will be able to be vaccinated before the end of September.
We are on track, but we are working every single day to accelerate that even further.
View Erin O'Toole Profile
CPC (ON)
View Erin O'Toole Profile
2021-02-24 14:25 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is not on track.
Here is why: 300,000 people need to be vaccinated per day with a two-dose vaccine to meet the Prime Minister's September deadline. That is like vaccinating the city of Vaughan every single day.
What is the plan to vaccinate 300,000 people every single day to meet that September deadline?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:26 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, as we have said from the very beginning, we have been working with the provinces in preparation for the big lift in the coming weeks, as we go from vaccines coming in slowly because of manufacturing delays and ramp-ups, to receiving millions upon millions of vaccines coming in and getting into people's arms.
We will be working with the private sector. We will be working with provinces and territories. We will be working with family doctors and pharmacists. We are going to make sure that everyone who wants a vaccine gets vaccinated by September.
View Erin O'Toole Profile
CPC (ON)
View Erin O'Toole Profile
2021-02-24 14:26 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, Canada has vaccinated less than 4% of its population. The United States has vaccinated almost 20% of their population. Canada is lagging behind. The Prime Minister promised to vaccinate all Canadians by September. To get there, we would have to vaccinate 300,000 people a day.
Where is the plan?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:26 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to announce today that we will be getting more than 460,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine the week of March 8. The week of March 22, we will get 840,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine. This means that we will have received over two million doses in the first quarter.
Furthermore, in the first two weeks of April alone, we will be receiving more than 1.5 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
We are going to start receiving a large number of doses in the coming months and we will work with the provinces and territories to get vaccines into the arms of all Canadians.
View Erin O'Toole Profile
CPC (ON)
View Erin O'Toole Profile
2021-02-24 14:27 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, we need 300,000 doses per day, not per week.
Israel is ready to vaccinate its entire population. The Americans are vaccinating millions of people a day. Canada now ranks 53rd worldwide in terms of vaccinations. That is unacceptable for a G7 country.
How many Canadians will be vaccinated next week?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:27 [p.4491]
Mr. Speaker, we are getting hundreds of thousands of vaccines every week, and we will continue to get more. We have been working with the provinces and territories from the beginning.
I assure my hon. colleague that I have faith that the provinces and territories, with which we have been working for many months now, will be able to vaccinate people as quickly as possible.
I can also tell him that the provinces and territories have categorically assured me they will be able to ramp up vaccination rates to use all of the doses Canada will be getting.
View Yves-François Blanchet Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, as a precursor to future linguistic policies, the government's preliminary discussion paper has two things going for it. It recognizes that the status of French is precarious, and it recognizes the need for action. This is a statement of intent.
Quebec already has Bill 101. We alone must decide how to deal with our linguistic issues.
Can the Prime Minister tell us what his minister's proposal does better than or over and above Bill 101?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:29 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, this is precisely the bone of contention between the Bloc Québécois and the Liberal Party of Canada.
We both recognize that French is in decline in Canada and Quebec, and we will take action.
However, the government recognizes that we must act to protect our beautiful language not only in Quebec, but across Canada: in Timmins, in Moncton, in Saint-Boniface, in Boninville and from coast to coast to coast.
That is what the federal government can do, and that is what we will do with our plan to modernize the Official Languages Act.
View Yves-François Blanchet Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois is not opposed to supporting French outside Quebec, not at all.
What we are saying, however, is that this document will turn into any kind of legislation until after an election, which could be this fall, or maybe in the spring or even next year, so why not act quickly to immediately implement Bill 101 in federally regulated institutions, as the Bloc has proposed in a bill?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:31 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, once again, we clearly see that the Bloc only cares about Quebec, and that is fine.
We in the Government of Canada are here as proud Quebeckers and proud Canadians to protect the French language across Canada. That is exactly what we are going to do. We will work with the Government of Quebec to protect French in that province, but we will also work with governments, municipalities, partners and institutions across the country to enhance the vitality of the beautiful language of Molière.
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
2021-02-24 14:31 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, across the country, people cannot buy the medication they need.
I have met families that have to cut their pills in half because they cannot afford them. Canadians need public, universal pharmacare. Every union in Quebec agrees.
Will the Prime Minister vote in favour of fully public universal pharmacare, yes or no?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:31 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, no Canadian should have to choose between paying for their medication and putting food on the table.
In one generation, we have done more than any other government to lower the price of drugs. We are working with the provinces and territories to ensure that all Canadians have access to affordable drugs, but we will not do what the NDP is proposing and impose a federal solution on Quebec and the other provinces. We will work in partnership and respect constitutional jurisdictions.
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jagmeet Singh Profile
2021-02-24 14:32 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, today the Prime Minister has a choice. Will he stand on the side of people who cannot afford the medication they need and desperately need help, or will he stand on the side of big pharma, which does not want to see medication coverage for all?
The Liberal government's own report states that the Canada pharmacare act is one of the key steps in establishing medication coverage for all. That is exactly what our New Democratic bill would do.
Will the Prime Minister be voting in favour of our bill to bring in medication coverage for all Canadians, yes or no?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:33 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, no Canadian should have to choose between paying for their medication and putting food on the table. That is why this government has done more, over the past five years, than any previous government to lower the prices of prescription drugs. We know there is more to do, but unlike the NDP we will not be imposing on provincial jurisdictions rules that are not worked out with them. We respect the Constitution on this side of the House, and we will work hand in glove with the premiers to ensure that we are ensuring pharmacare universally across this country.
View Pierre Poilievre Profile
CPC (ON)
View Pierre Poilievre Profile
2021-02-24 14:33 [p.4492]
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has failed on several counts. He has the highest unemployment rate in the G7. That is a failure. He has the largest deficit in the G7. That is another failure. He has the lowest vaccination rate in the G7. That is another failure.
When the Montreal Canadiens had a string of losses, they fired their coach. When the country's coach has a string of failures, is it not time to fire him?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:34 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, we made a very direct promise to Canadians at the beginning of the pandemic. We promised to be there for them, no matter how long it lasted or what it took. That is what we are doing.
We are there to support workers, families and small businesses. We will continue to support our seniors. We will continue to protect Canadians' health so we can get through this pandemic and get back to growing our economy as quickly as possible.
That is our plan. That is our approach, but the Conservatives think that we are spending too much, too quickly. That is not true.
View Pierre Poilievre Profile
CPC (ON)
View Pierre Poilievre Profile
2021-02-24 14:34 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, the first Trudeau killed jobs in the west, and now we learn intentionally in Quebec. This Prime Minister, by contrast, spreads job losses around equally: 850,000 of them in fact. It is the highest unemployment in the G7 and the worst economic growth per capita since the Great Depression.
Does the Prime Minister not understand that spreading misery around equally is not a virtue?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:36 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, Conservative politicians from the very beginning of this pandemic kept insisting that we were spending too much when investing in Canadians, and that we should have helped businesses before we helped families. The member opposite specifically said that he did not believe in the kinds of investments we were making in Canadians. He was wrong then and he is wrong now.
Indeed, as of January, Canada had recovered 71% of the jobs lost in the wake of the pandemic, compared with only 56% in the U.S. At 64.3%, Canada has a higher labour force participation rate than Germany, the U.S. and Japan. We are working right.
View Pierre Poilievre Profile
CPC (ON)
View Pierre Poilievre Profile
2021-02-24 14:36 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, the problem with that is that, on 49 different occasions in the House, the Prime Minister has said that the best measurement of jobs is the unemployment rate. By that measure, Japan has a 3% unemployment rate, Germany and the U.K. have 5% unemployment rates, the U.S. has 6% and Italy and France, two socialist countries, have 9% unemployment rates. Canada is at the top of the heap for job losses and unemployment.
Why does the Prime Minister excel at being the worst? Is it because he has so much practice?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:36 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, while the opposition plays political word games, we are going to remain focused on Canadians.
We have been, from the very beginning, there to invest in Canadians, to support small businesses through this historic pandemic, and to work with families and workers to support them as we make it through this.
We are going to continue to stay focused on what is necessary to support families across the country and bring our economy roaring back as we reopen. That is the plan and the focus this government has taken. Conservatives can well say we are doing too much, but we know that we are going to continue to do what is necessary.
View Richard Martel Profile
CPC (QC)
View Richard Martel Profile
2021-02-24 14:37 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, the Liberal government has a real genius for announcing poorly designed policies.
The Prime Minister recently announced new quarantine measures for travellers, but they are not working. People cannot come back to Canada unless they have a hotel reservation. They are trying to make reservations, but the problem is that they are spending three days on the phone and still not getting through to anyone.
What is the Prime Minister's plan for fixing this situation?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:38 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, we are here to implement some of the strictest measures in the world at our borders. We have been taking extremely strong measures since March, and we continue to work to keep all Canadians safe.
I understand that there are additional measures and that things are complicated for some people who are returning to Canada. We are working to make it easier to book a hotel room and stay safe. At the same time, we want to point out that this is not the ideal time to travel. Now is the time to stay home, stay safe and keep our neighbours safe.
View Richard Martel Profile
CPC (QC)
View Richard Martel Profile
2021-02-24 14:38 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, we understand that it is best not to travel, but there are Canadians who need to come back home. It is the government's job to implement suitable measures to ensure that all Canadian citizens can return in a safe and orderly manner. Unfortunately, what is happening is exactly the opposite. Every time this government comes up with a plan, it is either too late or ill conceived.
I would like to know when the Prime Minister is going to fix this situation.
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:39 [p.4493]
Mr. Speaker, our plan for quarantining people returning to Canada is working. Yes, there were some challenges the first few days, but we are able to address them and keep travellers and all Canadians safe when they return.
I understand that this is a challenging situation for many people, but we will continue to be there to protect travellers and all Canadians through these responsible measures.
View Erin O'Toole Profile
CPC (ON)
View Erin O'Toole Profile
2021-02-24 14:39 [p.4494]
Did he say it is working, Mr. Speaker? People are spending 25 hours on hold to reserve a hotel room. That is unbelievable, although not unexpected with this government, which has not come up with a rapid testing plan, a vaccination plan or a quarantine plan.
Why is this Prime Minister always showing up late and unprepared?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:40 [p.4494]
Mr. Speaker, Canada has some of the strictest border and travel measures in the world. The concerning variants have forced us to adopt new measures to protect Canadians during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We have made it clear from the beginning of the pandemic that no one should be travelling. Travelling puts people at risk. Our goal will always be to protect Canadians. We are addressing the glitches in the new system, but we will always ensure that Canadians are protected.
View Stéphane Bergeron Profile
BQ (QC)
View Stéphane Bergeron Profile
2021-02-24 14:40 [p.4494]
Mr. Speaker, yesterday we read disturbing records of official conversations between the U.S. government and former prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau. We learned that, after the Parti Québécois was elected in 1976, Mr. Trudeau talked about a diplomatic and industrial strategy to undermine Quebec's economy. He asked Paul Desmarais to move his business out of Quebec, with the stated objective of doubling Quebec's unemployment rate. The Canadian prime minister was plotting to make honest people lose their jobs for political ends.
Does the Prime Minister think his predecessor's actions were worthy of the office?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:41 [p.4494]
Mr. Speaker, I will not get into a debate over history with the Bloc Québécois member today. What I am concerned about these days is protecting people, fighting COVID-19 and ensuring a strong economic comeback for Quebec and Canada. That is what I will continue to focus on.
View Stéphane Bergeron Profile
BQ (QC)
View Stéphane Bergeron Profile
2021-02-24 14:41 [p.4494]
Mr. Speaker, then let us talk about the present. These revelations have revived questions about federal support for Quebec's leading industries. Ottawa is abandoning our aerospace sector, since Canada is the only major country without a strategic policy for this sector. It is abandoning Davie and our shipbuilding expertise. Although Quebec is a pioneer in the electrification of transportation, the government is investing $300 million to develop batteries in Ontario. The list goes on. What looks like a definite trend today, to put it mildly, was a deliberate strategy under Pierre Elliott Trudeau.
Now more than ever, the Prime Minister must explain why he has neglected our leading industries. Will he do so?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:42 [p.4494]
Mr. Speaker, on the contrary, since the start of this pandemic and since taking office five years ago, we have been investing for Quebeckers and for all Canadians.
We are investing in new technologies. We are working with our partners in Quebec and across the country to invest in aerospace and electrification. We will continue to make investments.
I know that it upsets the Bloc to see a federal government that is very present in people's lives and helping Quebeckers and Canadians every day, but that is exactly what we are doing.
View Michelle Rempel Garner Profile
CPC (AB)
Mr. Speaker, the Liberals have put Canada months behind the rest of the world in getting vaccines. It is troubling that yesterday the government said that even with mass vaccination, COVID restrictions may continue.
More public sacrifice and lockdowns were the response to the second wave, and the government's projections say that this clearly did not work. If the government is now saying vaccines will not lift all restrictions, what is the Prime Minister's plan B, or does he plan on keeping Canada under COVID restrictions forever?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:43 [p.4494]
Mr. Speaker, I am not entirely sure what the opposition health critic has been watching, but we have seen, over the past many weeks, the numbers decline because of the significant public health measures that Canadians have been engaged in and the sacrifices people have been making. The provinces have led the way in bringing in the right kinds of restrictions over the past number of months. We have seen this working.
As vaccines are arriving at the same time as we are seeing a danger of variants, we need to remain vigilant, get as many people vaccinated as possible and continue to keep ourselves safe from the threat of a third wave.
View Michelle Rempel Garner Profile
CPC (AB)
Mr. Speaker, I watched Theresa Tam's press conference on Friday and it had a violently high hockey stick projection of what the third wave could look like because the Prime Minister has not produced vaccines for Canadians. Virtually no one can get one, but, again, the health officials said that even with mass vaccination the government might not recommend opening up the country. People are losing their lives, their mental health and their jobs. We need certainty and a plan to move forward.
Is the government now saying that a fully vaccinated population will not end lockdowns, and if so, what will?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:45 [p.4495]
Mr. Speaker, every step of the way during this pandemic, we have made our decisions based on the best recommendations of science and scientists, comparing data from around the world and moving forward in ways that have kept Canadians safer than those in many countries. At the same time, we have seen too many tragedies.
We will continue to move forward in ways that minimize the spread of COVID-19 and maximize the speed with which vaccines arrive. We will work hand in hand with the provinces and territories on the public health measures that are necessary to see us through this pandemic and out the other side in the best shape possible.
View Pierre Paul-Hus Profile
CPC (QC)
Mr. Speaker, the best way to get back to something close to normal in Canada is to vaccinate people.
Great Britain has come up with a four-step plan to lift its lockdown restrictions. It is vaccinating 400,000 people a day.
Canadians are realizing that we are really behind, and it is the Prime Minister's fault.
What is the Prime Minister's plan to make up for lost time?
View Justin Trudeau Profile
Lib. (QC)
View Justin Trudeau Profile
2021-02-24 14:46 [p.4495]
Mr. Speaker, we are starting to receive hundreds of thousands of vaccines a week, and we will be receiving millions in the coming weeks.
We know that we are going to speed up the vaccination process, but we need to continue to be vigilant against the variants that are coming in from places around the world.
We will overcome this crisis thanks to the support our government is providing to small businesses and families and thanks to the health measures that people are taking and the sacrifices that everyone has unfortunately had to make this winter. We will keep going and overcome this crisis together.
View Pierre Paul-Hus Profile
CPC (QC)
Mr. Speaker, I would like to point out to the Prime Minister that Canada is still ranked 53rd in terms of the total number of doses administered. All of the other G7 countries are doing far better than us. The problem is that we need a plan.
If the Prime Minister is so confident about the vaccines, can he tell us when we will be able to end the lockdown and get back to normal life?
View Anthony Rota Profile
Lib. (ON)
We have a point of order for a technical issue.
The hon. member for Hamilton Mountain.
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