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Results: 1 - 15 of 651
View Churence Rogers Profile
Lib. (NL)
Mr. Chair, Monday was a sad day in my riding of Bonavista—Burin—Trinity, and indeed our entire province. Please join me as I offer sincere condolences to the families of the men who lost their lives at sea in a tragic accident off the coast of St. Lawrence in Placentia Bay.
Ed Norman, his son Scott Norman and his nephew Jody Norman all tragically lost their lives while fishing for crab this past Monday. A fourth man, family friend Isaac Kettle, was also with them. After a courageous search mission by Canadian Coast Guard auxiliary members and the Department of National Defence and Provincial Airlines, he is unfortunately still missing. We grieve with the entire town of St. Lawrence as they mourn this tragic loss of life.
Mr. Chair, I am sure the entire province of Newfoundland and Labrador, this parliamentary family and Canadians from coast to coast to coast join me in thinking of these men, along with their friends and families, during this difficult time.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
View Gudie Hutchings Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
First of all, from the Long Range Mountains, I too want to send my condolences to my colleague, Mr. Rogers from Bonavista—Burin—Trinity, on the tragic loss in St. Lawrence. We're all communities that rely on the sea, and we understand the importance and the tragedy, and the hard work it is being fishers.
However, today, colleagues, I want to mention, as my colleague from across the way said, that it's national tourism week, so please take the time to get out and thank the tourism and hospitality businesses in your ridings.
Most businesses around the world were hit hard by COVID-19. The tourism economy was hit very hard, especially seasonal and rural operations and the 1.8 million people the industry employs. However, this industry knows how to work hard. They know how to partner. They know how to look after their employees and their guests. They will find new and innovative opportunities and experiences. They will build new business and they will continue to attract visitors.
We know that the domestic and local markets will recover first. I know that the operators in my riding are getting ready just for that. It's exciting to speak with them about how they're working on their “new normal” and how it's going to be developed and implemented here in the Long Range Mountains.
Remember too that many of our national parks are opening on June 1, so get out and explore the park in your backyard.
I look forward to working with the Tourism Industry Association of Canada, Destination Canada and my colleagues so that when we turn the corner of this pandemic, we are ready to rebuild a stronger tourism economy.
Friends, go out and discover the tourism treasures in your province. They need your support. Tourism matters.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
View Scott Simms Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you, Chair.
I would like to take this time to salute those who go above and beyond the call of duty to provide care and comfort to others.
In my 16 years in the House of Commons I have never experienced anything like this, when we find our lives are at a standstill and there is so much sorrow felt by families who suffer from the effects of COVID-19.
However, here are two examples of kindness right here in Newfoundland and Labrador. Shanna and Fred Patey of Bishop's Falls, along with a few of their friends, spend hours next to the Trans-Canada Highway with just a barbeque and a cooler. They serve free meals for truckers crossing our province each and every day. So far they have provided over 1,500 meals.
There is also Mitch Strickland of Grand Falls-Windsor, who owns Appy's Diner. He has continually provided food for the local hospital and other front-line workers through his donations.
To all our front-line workers in grocery stores and delivery trucks, and to doctors, nurses, LPNs, paramedics, first responders and, of course, our brave women and men in the military, we will be forever grateful and blessed because of you.
Thank you.
Some hon. members: Hear, hear!
View Jack Harris Profile
NDP (NL)
This is my first time appearing before the COVID-19 special committee of the whole. I would like to take the opportunity to pay tribute to all the health care workers, front-line workers and essential workers across the country who serve so diligently and selflessly during the crisis.
I also wish to offer my condolences to the families and loved ones of the far too many Canadians who have lost their lives due to this disease. I offer a special tribute to Snowbird Captain Jennifer Casey and also the crew of the RCAF Cyclone helicopter crash.
Mr. Chair, the fiscal situation facing Newfoundland and Labrador is very bleak and getting worse as each day passes. Since 2008 we've been considered a “have” province and have received no equalization payments. This year our province is facing a deficit, however, of $2 billion due to the loss of revenues and royalties due to COVID-19, while Nova Scotia and New Brunswick each received $2 billion in equalization.
We were happy to contribute when we could do so, but now we need help. Will the Government of Canada adjust the equalization program or find another way to ensure that Newfoundland and Labrador is not unfairly burdened as a result of these circumstances?
View Jack Harris Profile
NDP (NL)
Madam Chair, that ate up a lot of my time, but it didn't answer the question about what we're going to do for the next five years, waiting for that change.
The fishing industry support plan, recently announced, provides a number of positive programs, including allowing fish harvesters to use last year's catch numbers to qualify for EI because of the anticipated shorter season this year due to COVID-19. However, fish plant workers were left out.
Will the minister for fisheries or finance announce today that fish plant workers can do the same and use last year's weeks to qualify for EI, if necessary, so that they will not go without income after the fishing season?
View Jack Harris Profile
NDP (NL)
Thank you, Chair.
That's essential to look at it, but what we want to know is if you will do the same thing for fish plant workers as you're doing for fish harvesters.
View Jack Harris Profile
NDP (NL)
Madam Chair, we know that indigenous Canadians are overrepresented in our federal prisons and that a far higher percentage of them are also serving their sentence in prison rather than in the community, thereby suffering a greater chance of infection from COVID-19.
Why then has the Parole Board cancelled or indefinitely postponed parole hearings for indigenous inmates who wish the assistance of an elder in support of their case, which is the choice of some 40% of indigenous inmates seeking release on parole? Does the government not recognize this as a discriminatory practice?
View Seamus O'Regan Profile
Lib. (NL)
Mr. Chair, I'm happy that we were able to announce today some liquidity measures for large cap corporations in the oil and gas sector. These measures will provide them with the liquidity that they needed, and this is also the liquidity that they asked for. It was on April 17 that we started liquidity measures for small and medium-sized businesses in the oil and gas industry, and those are the ones in which 85% of workers are affected.
Today's measures will complete that. I'm very happy that we've had such people as the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers come out and say that this is what they asked for and this is what they need, and we have produced what they need in order to ensure the future competitiveness of Canada's oil and gas sector.
View Seamus O'Regan Profile
Lib. (NL)
Mr. Chair, Canada's oil sector provides jobs for more than 576,000 people, including 11,000 indigenous people, in every part of Canada. It is essential that we support those businesses. It is essential that we support the many indigenous people who work in our oil and gas sector, particularly in Alberta and Saskatchewan. We have provided supports for those businesses, and we will continue to do so, also keeping in mind that in many of these communities the importance of public health and safety is foremost in our minds.
View Seamus O'Regan Profile
Lib. (NL)
Mr. Chair, we have worked with industry and with provinces on every front to ensure the stability of the oil and gas sector of our country. We have concentrated on workers. We need the workers in our oil and gas sector in order to lower emissions and achieve a greener economy. We need their determination and their ingenuity. We need to make sure that their jobs are held whole. Therefore, we are looking after workers and we are looking out for companies that hold onto those jobs for those workers.
View Seamus O'Regan Profile
Lib. (NL)
Mr. Chair, we know that our oil and gas sector is suffering through two crises. We have the impacts of COVID and the effects of a global price war, and we have been tackling both of these on each front. On April 17, we announced liquidity measures to support the small and medium-sized players. That made up 85% of the jobs in this sector. We have announced liquidity will be further made available to larger players. As well, through the BCAP, we are making sure that more companies are eligible so that they can remain whole and so they can hold onto the jobs that we need.
View Seamus O'Regan Profile
Lib. (NL)
Mr. Chair, since 2017, our government has invested billions of dollars.
I'll answer the question in English.
Sorry.
We launched our softwood lumber action plan to support workers in communities. We introduced funding through the strategic innovation fund specifically for forestry. Building on our work today, we have included traditional investments to make sure this sector innovates, diversifies and grows.
Over these past two and a half months, I have spent an inordinate amount of time with CEOs, with heads of the forestry sectors from coast to coast to coast. A few days ago, I convened a meeting of CEOs from all parts of this country, from Quebec to British Columbia, to talk to them about solutions, about answers.
The liquidity measures that were announced yesterday will help some of them. We will continue to work closely with industry to make sure we are there for them and that we stand by them through the COVID crisis, so we make sure that—
View Gudie Hutchings Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you.
Ministers, it's always a pleasure to see you here.
Minister Monsef, I think it's great that you agree with me—and that all of our colleagues around the table agree—on the importance of connectivity, for rural especially. It's interesting, because the previous government's connecting Canadians program connected 220,000 households between 2009 and 2012, at speeds of five megabits to one. They were estimating to do 280,000 households between 2015 and 2017, but our government upped that to 350,000 households.
Minister, in your comments, you mentioned that our announced funding of $6 billion is going toward Internet investments, and that is a contrast to the Conservative approach, which essentially leaves rural and remote communities to pay for these sizable infrastructure projects on their own. Can you tell us in a few minutes how you and our government are working with colleagues around the table to make sure that every single Canadian has access to affordable high-speed Internet and that it doesn't matter where they live?
View Gudie Hutchings Profile
Lib. (NL)
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Minister, thank you for being with me tonight. I, too, live in a province where culture, heritage and tradition are very strong and important, here on the east coast in my riding of Long Range Mountains in Newfoundland and Labrador. We, too, as all Canadians, recognize how important arts, culture, sports and heritage are in the lives of our artists, creators and athletes. They keep us united more than ever.
Can you bring us up to date on some of the measures that you are taking to support them through this COVID crisis?
View Gudie Hutchings Profile
Lib. (NL)
Great.
Minister, many organizations in my riding are reaching out as they're facing great uncertainty, just as they are all across the country. If their festival, their event, is cancelled, are they going to lose their funding? I think you've indicated that you're going to accept and look after them. At this time, when the new round of funding comes open, will you be accepting new applications?
Hon. Steven Guilbeault: Absolutely—
Ms. Gudie Hutchings: I have another question for you, Minister. I've had many questions from groups, especially musicians, about how they have cultural festivals. Would their funding be able to help them if their event is cancelled due to COVID-19? Would they be able to move that funding and use it to help them do a virtual event?
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