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Results: 1 - 15 of 3526
View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
That is amazing. Who arranged for that? Thank you so much.
An hon. member: You're famous.
An hon. member: Is it bilingual?
The Chair: Oh, yes, we can't present this: It's not bilingual.
An hon. member: It should be in braille too.
An hon. member: Hey, David, if you want to share that cake, it has to be in two languages.
Mr. David Christopherson: I wonder how much sugar is in it.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
You're very kind.
Listen, thank you to whoever did this. I'm blown away.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
Thanks, John. I know that.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
Thank you.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
It's not the Senate.
Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
Mr. David Christopherson: When I speak, I'll discuss that.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
“Goodbye” would be the end of the sentence.
You almost have me speechless, which is quite the accomplishment. I'm blown away. I just confess that, for all the passion I bring to the issues, I don't handle emotional issues real good. This just overwhelms me. Nothing means more to me than words like you've given today, words from colleagues who walk in the same shoes. No matter how close you are, it's not until you've walked in those shoes and know what it's like to be a parliamentarian that you fully understand, when fellow parliamentarians compliment you, what it means, especially when they're people you respect.
I've been blessed, especially this last Parliament, with being on two committees whose mandates I thoroughly enjoy: public accounts and PROC. It's also given me an opportunity to spend time with some of the finest parliamentarians that I've met. The hardest thing for us to do is to climb past partisanship, yet it's the critical part where we actually make a difference, where we find a way to move forward for the country—that ability to set that aside. I'm guilty of not doing it all the time, too, because our passions do drive us, but at the end of the day, that ability means everything.
With the people I've been able to serve with, the two chairs that I've served under—you, Mr. Larry Bagnell, and Mr. Kevin Sorenson.... I've been blessed with fantastic chairs who were only interested in the best for Parliament and Canada.
I thank all of you.
I thank my fellow Hamiltonian, David Sweet. We know that nobody gets up every day and says, “What can I do for Hamilton”, unless they're Hamiltonians themselves. I've always believed that when we're on home turf, it's important for those of us from different parties to make their city the priority and that we, as much as possible, come here and have a united front on the issues that matter. When we disagree, we do it respectfully. If we're going to have a knock-down, drag-'em-out fight, we do it here in the context of Parliament. However, when we go home, we're home, and we treat each other with respect. That means a lot.
I can't address everyone individually, as I know that I don't have enough time, but, Mr. Reid, definitely you'll be the first invitation to that dock, and I'll have a cold one ready for you, sir.
There are a number of people who I'm looking forward to continuing to work with.
I'll just also mention that on the issue of parliament's security that matters to us, Mr. Blaney today, who was the minister at the time, just stopped by me after our public accounts committee—I don't think I'm telling tales out of school; I hope not—and said to me, “Look, you need to understand that, at the time, we were under a lot of pressure. There were a lot of crises. I think we made the wrong decision. I think we made a mistake. I want you to know that if I'm here in the next Parliament, I'm committed to changing that and putting it back to the way it should be.”
I know that people like Mr. Graham and others care about that, and that's a good sign. It means a lot because it's the way Parliament should run.
Just to end, I was asked if I'm going to still be around. Yes. It turns out that sitting around on the public accounts committee for 15 years suddenly qualifies you as an expert. There are people around the world who would like me to come and do some work with their public accounts committees and their auditor general systems, and I'm now on the board of directors of the Canadian Audit and Accountability Foundation. It's the main non-profit NGO that we use at the public accounts committee for their expertise and assistance. I'll be joining their team and travelling. So, I'll be continuing to do that. Hopefully it's not more than half time. I still want to put my feet up for the other half. I'm tired: I've been working for 50 years, and that's sufficient.
Those are my plans going forward. However, I'm also aware that plans, like war plans, change. The first thing that goes out the window when the war starts is the plan, so we'll see what actually happens.
What I would like to do, if you'll allow me, is.... This is very difficult. You guys have really, really thrown me for a loop. What's interesting is.... You mentioned the filibuster, and a lot of you have commented on the non-partisanship. I have a present that speaks to both those issues. It speaks to the filibuster, but it also speaks to non-partisanship and extends beyond us as parliamentarians.
You all know Tyler Crosby, who is without question, in my view, the most amazing staff person on the Hill, bar none. You often see me talking to him. He's my right hand. I couldn't do this job without him, at least not the way I'd like to. However, he's not always there. Sometimes he nips out to get something, and then I have nobody else. It's just me here, right?
Yet, when we were in a filibuster, when it was time to unite and fight the good fight, those lines didn't matter, and the partisanship didn't matter.
The Hill Times actually had a picture. I'll just read the cutline that goes with it. It says, “NDP MP David Christopherson consults with an opposition staffer ahead of resuming the filibuster at the House Affairs Committee on April 5. He alone spoke eight hours in all that day, and for another four hours on April 6.” The other person in that picture is Kelly Williams.
Some hon. members: Oh, oh!
Mr. David Christopherson: I want to present to Kelly a frame of that picture as an indication of the way that we can be non-partisan not only as politicians but as staffers.
I thank you for the unpaid work that you did for me. You assisted me to do what I did.
With that, colleagues, there aren't enough words to properly say what this has meant to me. This will stay with me forever. You really touched me in a way that I can't express, and I thank you very much. It means everything to me.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
No, I didn't. No.
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View David Christopherson Profile
NDP (ON)
Oh, wow. I've now achieved it. There's the phone call.
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
I would like to clarify certain aspects, to ensure that we understand the situation properly.
Let's use the example of a pregnant member whose riding is very far. If ever, as of the 28th week of pregnancy, it became very complicated for her, medically speaking, to get to Parliament, she would have to provide a medical certificate justifying her absence from the House, as far as I understand. Basically, the days in the period between the 28th week and the 36th week of pregnancy would be considered sick days. As of the 36th week, they would be considered pregnancy days.
In short, before the 36th week of pregnancy, a member's non-attendance must be justified through medical reasons that prevent her from coming to Parliament. In that case, the individual must provide a medical certificate.
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
Great.
I want to clarify something else.
During those days of non-attendance, the member remains responsible for all the administrative aspects—so anything that cannot be delegated to employees. The member continues to fulfil their duties, such as by approving their employees' various absences and their office's spending. The whole administrative component related to the management of the member's office remains the member's responsibility, correct?
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
Ultimately, a member with a critic role can be called by their party to provide advice on positions to take, for example, while a nurse on maternity leave would not be called at home to be asked whether a patient should be given a particular medication.
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
Concerning the 12-month period, that is left to the member's discretion. There is no obligation to take 12 months of leave. A member can make a judgment call and decide to be present for two months because an important issue for them is under consideration, and then decide to take a month to be with their child.
The parliamentary calendar is often made up of three-week blocks of sitting, after which members can return to their riding for a week. The member could elect not to return to the House during the week in the middle of that block, to avoid having to make a round trip over the weekend. In general, members make a round trip in less than 48 hours, to make the trip less difficult. So a member could choose to spend the middle week in their riding, to avoid round trips over a weekend. That would be possible to do over a 12-month period.
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
I have one last question. It's about financial penalties. Basically, that amendment shelters members from financial penalties.
Often, all the $120 deductions for every day of sitting that will be missed are added up. We tell ourselves that it may not be a very large amount, but Parliament could decide at any time to increase that amount. For example, it could decide that, from now on, there will be a $500 deduction per day of non-attendance. In that case, the estimated cost of absences for maternity reasons would no longer be the same at all.
Do you know when the $120 amount was last indexed or changed?
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
So, to your knowledge, the $120 amount has never been increased.
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View Christine Moore Profile
NDP (QC)
Okay.
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