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Results: 1 - 15 of 116
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions today. The first one is on behalf of my constituents of Beaches—East York and approximately 3,000 Canadians from across the country.
The petition calls on the Government of Canada to immediately revise Health Canada's Safety Code 6 to take into account the serious health effects of microwave radiation related to cellphone tower construction. The petition draws attention to the issue of the growing number of cellphone towers being constructed in my community and various communities across Canada.
My constituents have been very vocal leaders in bringing attention to this issue. I would like to thank all petitioners who have taken up this cause.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, my second petition pertains to support for Bill C-545, An Act to Eliminate Poverty in Canada.
As the petitioners say, poverty affects over 10% of Canadians and disproportionately affects aboriginal peoples, recent immigrants, people with disabilities and children. Poverty leads to poor health, such that people living in poverty suffer more health problems and have lower life expectancy than those not living in poverty.
The implementation of poverty reduction plans in several Canadian provinces and other countries has shown that poverty can be reduced. Bill C-545 would require the federal government to develop and implement a strategy for poverty elimination in consultation with the provincial, territorial, municipal and aboriginal governments and civil society organizations.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, today, the world celebrates the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day.
Today, more women than ever before are getting an education, whether a university degree or learning a skilled trade. I recently toured an operating engineers training centre where one-third of those in the course were women learning to operate cranes and other heavy machinery. A single mom with two kids was doing her part to learn a skilled trade that is in high demand and would provide her with a well-paying job. However, without child care she will be unable to take that job. She is not looking for a handout; she is looking for her government to invest in her future.
Women are achieving great success in the workforce and excelling in leadership positions. However, there is still much more we can do to help women succeed. Families need early learning and child care spaces to help them get back to work but the Conservative government cancelled the program.
We do not want handouts. We want equality.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives are facing electoral fraud charges from the 2006 election. Almost $20,000 in taxpayer dollars were laundered through the riding of Vaughan. The funds that helped elect the Minister of State for Seniors was dirty money. They even doctored invoices.
As a former police officer, the minister swore an oath to uphold the law. Does he now believe he is above the law, or will he get the dirty money from this scheme out of his riding?
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, I just need to say something.
When a document goes to a minister's office, first of all, we must recognize that the Minister of International Cooperation is not CIDA incarnate. She is the Minister of International Cooperation. CIDA has a president and vice-presidents. The president is CIDA; the system is CIDA.
Having been there I know that in cases like this, the president does not sign the document, unless the president and the vice-president of CIDA and the people recommending the program have thoroughly checked it out, have thoroughly debated or discussed it with the minister's office and have then decided that it is to be approved or that it is being supported or not.
In this case, it was obvious that the president signed the document, as did the other official from CIDA. Therefore, the document was signed.
Now if the minister did not agree, the normal procedure would be to send the document back and to continue negotiations and to have some discussion. The minister does not sign a document and then stick in the “not”. That is never done.
I think what happened in this case is quite obvious: the officials signed the document, the minister signed the document as it had been approved, and then after the fact was told to put in the “not” by the PMO, or someone at the PMO put it in.
I can say this: the document was doctored. It was not done the other way.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Teachers' Federation Project Overseas is now in its 50th year. It has sent nearly 2,000 teachers to over 50 countries to train teachers, develop curriculums and teach children.
Canada has made a commitment to help these countries meet their millennium development goals, but the Conservative government is abandoning its responsibility to these children.
How can the Conservatives spend $2 million on a fake lake, while they cut $2 million to help kids learn in developing countries?
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, it is unacceptable.
In Kenya, Canadian teachers have trained 3,600 teachers who in turn are now teaching 350,000 kids. The local programs also educate both teachers and students about HIV and AIDS in Kenya.
Teachers in Sierra Leone have said that without our good Canadian teachers the country will fail to meet its development goals.
These volunteer teachers help save lives, empower women and reduce poverty.
Once more, how can the Conservatives find $2 million for PMO press clippings, but find nothing for dedicated teachers abroad?
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, just days before Christmas, front-line immigrant service agencies across Canada were blindsided when the Conservatives slashed their funding without reasons.
The South Asian Women's Centre in Toronto, which provided vital assistance to 14,000 newcomers last year, will have to close its doors and leave thousands of people without services. These agencies help new Canadians integrate into society and contribute to our economy.
Will the minister reverse these harmful cuts before it is too late?
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, no answer but slander. That is fine.
The bulk of immigrants come to Ontario and others move to Ontario shortly after arriving. Under the current agreement, the current government owes Ontario $207 million and, of the $53 million cuts, $43 million are in Ontario.
This decision is short-sighted and irresponsible.
How can the Conservatives find $6 billion for unaffordable corporate tax cuts but cannot find the money we need for essential settlement services, specifically in Ontario?
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, exactly 62 years ago, humanity took a considerable step forward when it adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Since then, Human Rights Day is the occasion for people of all races to reflect on the way they treat one another, a day to reflect on how governments treat individuals.
At the same time, never has our country seen so many attacks on human rights on the part of its politicians. Never has a national party so systematically attacked human rights for petty political gain as today. The attacks on the charter, the attacks on women, immigrants and refugees that we have seen from the Conservative government are unworthy of Canada's heritage.
The Prime Minister should take advantage of the opportunity provided by this international Human Rights Day to examine his conscience and reconsider his many authoritarian and undemocratic decisions.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, 40 years ago today, the historic Royal Commission on the Status of Women paved the way for greater equality for Canadian women with the tabling of its groundbreaking recommendations on everything from pay equity to prohibiting gender and marital status as grounds for discrimination by employers.
Formed by former Liberal Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson, the commission played a major role in defining the status of women as a legitimate social issue. Most of the 167 recommendations tabled under the Trudeau government have been implemented.
Today, despite the progress made by women over the past decades, there are still significant barriers to equality in Canada.
Unfortunately, women’s equality has taken a step back under the Conservative government’s regressive policies, which have led to a growing gender gap in this country.
Equality will only be achieved when we all, including the Conservative government, uphold our responsibilities to the women of Canada.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, each year on December 3, we celebrate the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
The International Day of Persons with Disabilities aims to promote a better understanding of disability issues with a focus on equal enjoyment of human rights, as well as ensuring integration into all aspects of political, social, economic and cultural life.
The recent report by the HRSDC committee on the federal contribution to reducing poverty contains excellent recommendations to improve the lives of those living with disabilities, and I encourage the government to implement those recommendations.
The Liberal Party is a proud supporter of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. We believe that together we can help the 650 million people worldwide and the 4.4 million people in Canada living with disabilities today enjoy their full human rights.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, this Sunday marks the 15th anniversary of Canada's premier gun control legislation, the Firearms Act, created and implemented by the previous Liberal government on December 5, 1995. Since its creation, everyone but this ideological government agrees that it is needed in this country.
Despite the government's repeated attempts to dismiss the positive effects of the firearms registry during its campaign to abolish the registry against the will of the police, victims, women's groups and in fact the majority of Canadians, the facts speak for themselves.
The newest Conservative member, the member for Vaughan, the former OPP Commissioner, has said that keeping the registry, as the majority of parliamentarians have decided, is a “done deal”.
Perhaps the member will encourage his new boss to listen to him and move on.
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources refuses to do her duty to disabled Canadians by reviewing allegations of funnelling support money to Conservative ridings. Yet when it comes to Conservative candidate Julian Fantino, she has no problem signing a petition not only calling for an inquiry into his actions, but calling for him to be fired as OPP commissioner.
Why the double standard? Or did she only sign for short-term political gain?
View Maria Minna Profile
Lib. (ON)
Mr. Speaker, this is no small matter. The member was a minister when she signed a petition demanding that the Prime Minister's hand-picked candidate in Vaughan, Julian Fantino, be investigated. She wanted his pay docked. She wanted him suspended and she wanted him fired. Does she still hold the same view now, and if not, what has changed?
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