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Results: 1 - 15 of 456
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-18 14:57 [p.15297]
Mr. Speaker, gang violence in my community is in a state of crisis. There have been over 36 shootings in Surrey since March. The Conservatives have to be pushed every step of the way, and yet fail to take action. They have resisted supplying more RCMP officers and critical investment in youth gang crime prevention programs.
Now the Minister of Public Safety says 20 new RCMP officers are on the ground, but reports say this is not true. Have the additional RCMP officers made it to Surrey yet, yes or no?
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-17 19:22 [p.15251]
Mr. Speaker, I rise once again to call on the government to act now to address the violence that is taking place in my city of Surrey. Last weekend we had another two shootings, one on Friday night and another one on, I believe, Saturday night. Every week there are more shootings, and I have been standing in the House and asking the government what it has been doing and what its plans are.
People in my community are afraid. Mothers are afraid to let their kids play outside. I have a son who is eight years old, and my wife is very concerned about him playing outside on the street. This is simply not acceptable. People expect better from government, whether it is the federal government, provincial government, or city government. One of the primary responsibilities of a government is the security and safety of its citizens. That is not the case in my community right now.
The crime problem and shootings have reached a crisis level. I have stood in this House many times to ask the government to tell us what its plans are and what concrete action it is taking to ensure that we do not have any fatalities. We have already had one. We do not want innocent people or any young person killed.
I have stood in the House multiple times demanding that the government take action. Yes, the government came up with a big announcement in Surrey that it would deliver 100 officers and $3.5 million for the gang prevention program. It cut the funding for this program back in 2013. The funding was ongoing until 2013. Maybe the Conservatives forgot to renew it.
On the 100 officers the city has been asking for, the Conservatives finally said they would approve them and that they were on the way. Last week the Minister of Public Safety announced in the House that he has 20 boots going out to Surrey.
I want the government to confirm how many officers have actually gone to Surrey. How many boots are in Surrey? How many boots are being trained? When are they going to get there? Is it going to take one month? Is it going to take two months or three months?
The Minister of Public Safety said that the boots are on the ground in Surrey. I would like the parliamentary secretary to be very clear and tell me how many are on the ground, how many are in training, and how many are going to be dispatched, and I want a timeframe, because people in Surrey expect that. They are waiting to have some sort of help from the government to curb the violence that is taking place.
More RCMP officers alone is not going to resolve the issue. I put forward a motion in the House that calls for sustainable long-term funding for crime prevention and youth gang prevention programs that need to be ongoing, but the government has failed to have sustainable funding on an ongoing basis.
My questions are very simple. Where are those 100 RCMP officers? Are they on the ground, are they still in the air, are they still in Regina, or are the Conservatives just making this stuff up? This is not something to be fooled around with. This deals with public safety. This deals with gun violence in my community. Please answer those questions.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-17 19:30 [p.15252]
Mr. Speaker, the member talks in circles and does not answer the questions.
The 30 bills that the Conservatives brought in are not working in my community. The shootings are still happening.
The member said that I do not know how the training takes place. Let me remind her that I worked in a college that trained police for 15 years, so I know exactly how it works.
Do not blame this on those people in the corner, the Liberal Party, because you had 10 years to put this straight and have the training in place, and you failed to do that.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-17 19:30 [p.15252]
Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives have failed to put in place training that would allow those officers to be there.
My question is very simple. The member said that “deployment of the 20 members committed to Surrey is under way and that boots are already on the ground.” Are they under way to there? How many are actually in Surrey? Are there two, three, four?
Are there two members on the ground, three members on the ground in Surrey? How many are in Regina?
I am not asking how many people are on the way. How many are in Surrey right now?
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-16 15:25 [p.15165]
Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for LaSalle—Émard.
It is always an honour to rise in the House on behalf of my constituents of Surrey North to express my opposition to Bill S-7, an act to amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, the Civil Marriage Act, and the Criminal Code and to make consequential amendments to other acts, or as the Conservatives have titled the bill, the zero tolerance for barbaric cultural practices act.
Right from the start, with the title of the bill, it is evident that the intent of the legislation is only political. I have heard the concerns of many witnesses who have told us some of the measures were useless and would actually further marginalize victims. Following advice from these expert stakeholders, it is my obligation to stand firmly against Bill S-7.
First, most of the measures in the bill do not actually achieve anything at all. They only duplicate existing laws, and the few measures that Bill S-7 does introduce could actually have negative consequences that defeat the very purpose it claims to have, which is to protect women.
Violence against women and children is unacceptable. Much work needs to be done in Canada to prevent and combat these crimes. However, we have to listen to the recommendations of experts, stakeholders, and victims, who are on the ground dealing with these situations on a daily basis and are familiar with our Criminal Code and immigration act, for an appropriate response that offers an actual solution to this very serious problem.
We listened to many witnesses express their concerns with the purpose of the bill and state that it would in fact worsen problems for women. However, Conservatives are not listening.
Lawyer Deepa Mattoo, from the South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario stated:
Bill S-7 lacks the understanding of the complex issues of violence faced by women and children and does not achieve the goal that the government desires to achieve with this.
Dr. Naila Butt, from the Social Services Network also stated that:
Criminalization of forced marriage, without the much needed institutional support for victims, would only further alienate and harm those facing forced marriage and gender-based violence, with the added insult of being stigmatized that they come from barbaric cultures.
These are individuals who work at the ground level. They are familiar with what is going on in the community; they are the very stakeholders, the ones who work with the victims. Conservatives are once again ignoring the opinion of experts, stakeholders, and victims in order to benefit their political agenda.
I have said this before and I will say it again. If the Conservatives really want to tackle the issue of violence against women, how about they finally launch an inquiry into Canada's missing and murdered indigenous women? As of 2010, there have been 1,200 known cases of missing or murdered indigenous women in Canada. The statistics are absolutely shocking, yet the Prime Minister actually stated that this issue, and I quote him, “... it isn't really high on our radar...”. That is shameful.
The Minister of Aboriginal Affairs did not even have the decency to stand up during the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report. The government has literally failed to stand up for women's rights.
Conservatives like to pretend and brag they are tough on crime, but they are continuing to fail to protect Canadians by introducing political bills that offer empty solutions and are only put in place to benefit the Conservative agenda, like this bill. I know when the Conservatives pretend to be tough on crime. I know when they brag about being tough on crime.
There have been 30 shootings in my riding over the last number of months. That shows that whatever they have been doing for the last 10 years is not working in my community. We have been asking for police officers over a number of months, but the Conservatives cannot come up with concrete plans to even bring them into our city.
Violence against women remains a systematic, widespread issue in Canada. It is appalling but unfortunately not surprising that the Conservatives would want to politicize such a serious issue as gender-based violence.
We in Surrey are familiar with the current government's political tactics. The Conservatives like to sensationalize issues, but then they fail to provide any real solutions. For example, they have been saying that they will fix the crime problem in my community since they formed government. However, we have yet to see any real commitments or concrete solutions for my city. We see a lot of talk coming from these guys, but no action. It is clear that the current government is not committed to lowering crime in my community, just as it is not committed to tackling forced and underage marriages.
It is obvious that its intentions are not to combat gender-based violence. It will not even listen to the experts when it comes to something as effortless as changing the short title of this bill. The title of this bill, the zero tolerance for barbaric cultural practices act, was of major concern to many of the witnesses we heard from at the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, since it invokes racist stereotypes and further marginalizes minority groups. The title insinuates that all cultural practices are barbaric and reinforces prejudice against certain cultural groups by targeting racial minorities for practices that are in fact found in Canadian society at large and not only in these communities.
We put forth amendments to change not only the short title but also other aspects of the bill. However, all of our proposed amendments were rejected by the Conservative majority. A shock factor name will not help combat violence against women. Instead it sensationalizes the issue, and, as some witnesses suggested, it could force perpetrators to further isolate potential victims from resources.
As we were told at committee, this bill could also have serious unintended consequences that should not be ignored. For example, UNICEF expressed concerns that the bill would impose criminal sanctions against minors who attend, celebrate, or help organize a forced marriage, effectively impacting their future with a criminal record. This bill would re-victimize women and children who are at risk of violence by imposing criminal sanctions on them rather than protecting them from predators. The penalties would include criminalization and deportation, so some women and children would not want to come forward to report forced marriages.
If the Conservatives really have the interests of victims at heart, they would listen to the experts, the stakeholders, and the victims. They would conduct proper consultations before adopting measures that might harm the very people they are claiming to protect.
Canada needs a national plan to end violence against women and to protect women within our immigration system. However, the intention of this bill is only political. Its intent is not to protect women. Bill S-7 is yet another example of the current government's abuse of power to make useless pieces of legislation that only sensationalize an issue and discriminate against a part of the population in order to further its political agenda.
When will the government start listening to Canadians and come out with legislation that actually addresses Canadian issues? I will answer that question. The Conservatives will not have time to do that. They have had 10 years, and Canadians have had enough. They are tired.
We will have a new government on October 19 of this year. The NDP government will clean up a lot of the messes that the current government has made over the last 10 years. We will ensure that we come up with plans to protect our women and children. The Conservatives have failed to do that over the past 10 years, and it is time for them to go.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-16 15:36 [p.15166]
Mr. Speaker, that is typical of the Liberals. They will say one thing and do another. On Bill C-51, they said they were for it although they were against it, but they were actually going to vote against it. It is the same thing with this bill. They were against it although they were for some of the things in it, but they are going to vote with the government. That party cannot take a stand.
Now that they are trailing in the polls, Liberals are trying to adopt some of the very policies that the NDP has offered over the last four or five years. Canadians realize that this is too little, too late for the little party over in the corner.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-16 15:38 [p.15166]
Mr. Speaker, violence against women and children is a very serious issue that we need to address nationally. We need to address it in discussions with the provinces, the cities, and the communities. It is not something we can ignore.
There are 1,200 missing and murdered indigenous women. We have been calling on the government to have an inquiry to find out what happened, yet it has refused to do that.
Twelve hundred women have gone missing or been murdered, but it is clear that the government has no agenda when it comes to protecting women and children. It is more interested in partisan politics and trying to score some cheap points to get re-elected. That is not going to happen. I can assure everyone that Canadians have seen the Conservatives work over the past years. They have failed to deliver. Men, women, and children have been victimized over and over, yet the government has failed to protect those very same individuals.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-16 15:40 [p.15166]
Mr. Speaker, we should always support victims of such heinous crimes as forced marriages.
The problem is that the bill does not address the very issues my hon. colleagues have talked about. The bill does not address very the issues that need to be addressed. Witnesses came forward, expert witnesses and stakeholders, who are part of the community and worked in the community, yet the Conservatives failed to accept even one amendment to this bill. Even the Canadian Bar Association called this bill basically useless.
We need some concrete plans to address situations like those my hon. colleague talked about. Conservatives have failed to deliver for people who are forced into marriages, and this bill is not the solution.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-09 14:58 [p.14815]
Mr. Speaker, last night there was yet another shooting in Surrey near a busy restaurant patio. People are terrified and parents are afraid to let their children play outside. My community needs to know that the federal government is doing everything it can to stop the violence.
However, the Conservatives are not even providing answers to their questions. Therefore, will the minister finally please tell us the timeline for the proposed 100 RCMP officers?
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-03 19:53 [p.14560]
Mr. Speaker, I rise once again to call on the government to act now to address gang violence in my community.
Last week there was yet another shooting in Surrey. There have been 28 shootings since the beginning of March. Every week brings more shootings and more fear to my city. Parents are concerned about their children. It is simply unacceptable that there are communities in our country where parents are afraid for the safety of their children. The crime problem has reached crisis levels in my city. My community needs immediate help, but the government is stalling and playing politics with this very serious issue.
I have stood up in the House multiple times, and I am scheduled again for a late show next week. I recently demanded that the government take action on this issue. It seems like the Conservatives have to be pushed every step of the way to take any action at all. The mayor and the province have both asked the federal government for 100 more RCMP officers to help fight the escalating violence in Surrey.
The Conservatives had a big announcement with a press conference in Surrey where they finally, after much pressure from the New Democrats, approved the 100 RCMP officers. However, we have yet to see any sort of concrete plan. We have yet to see any action at all. With no description of where the money will come from, no timelines and no tangible steps for implementation, the announcement seems like yet another empty campaign promise. My community needs real answers and I am not getting them from the government.
More officers alone is not enough to fix the crime issue in Surrey, but it is certainly a start. It is going to take all levels of government to work together and make public safety a priority to stop gang-related violence in Surrey. That is why I have introduced a plan in Parliament that calls for long-term, stable funding for youth gang prevention and intervention programs. Youth gang prevention programs across Canada have demonstrated a direct impact on the lives of at-risk youth and reducing gang membership.
The Conservatives talk about being tough on crime. We see on the ground that the resources are not available for our communities to reduce or prevent crime in the first place.
The member across is going to get up and say, “We have introduced 30 new bills and that party didn't support them”. Despite the introduction of those 30 bills and despite us voting against them, because we knew they would not work, the violence is still happening in my community.
My questions are very simple. When, what exact date, will we have the 100 new promised RCMP officers on the ground? When, what exact date, will we receive $3.5 million for Surrey's wraparound gang prevention program? These are very simple questions. These are the questions that people from my constituency, the people from the city of Surrey and parents are asking.
I do not want to hear rhetoric. I have been hearing it for too long. I want some answers for my constituents and for the city of Surrey and I would like straight answers. When are the police going to be there? When is the money going to be delivered and for how many years?
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-03 20:00 [p.14561]
Mr. Speaker, I still did not get my answers.
The member talked about how we shamelessly voted against those 30 measures. Those measures are not working. The shootings are happening despite the 30-odd bills that the Conservatives brought in. That is why we voted against them.
What is really shameful are the the government's hollow promises to communities that it will provide safety for our communities. It has not done that. That is why parents in my community are afraid to let their children out.
The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration has failed to answer my very simple question, so I will ask him again. Let us see if he answers.
It is on the record. I will come back again next week and ask the same question until the Conservatives provide very clear answers as to when we can expect those 100 RCMP officers and when and how that $3.5 million will be provided to help the gang prevention program.
These are very simple questions. I have not been hearing any answers from the parliamentary secretary. Will he please provide those answers? My community wants those answers.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-02 13:38 [p.14470]
Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today on behalf of my constituents from Surrey North to speak on Bill S-4, an act to amend the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and to make a consequential amendment to another act. I rise today because I oppose the bill in its current form.
Members from three parties proposed amendments to the bill so that it would stay within constitutional boundaries. However, the Conservatives rejected every single one of those amendments, even the amendments that were drafted according to the comments and suggestions from the witnesses.
As the official opposition, it is essential that we carefully review the legislation and voice dissenting opinions in order to ensure that each bill is thoroughly examined. In this case, as in most cases that I have experienced in the past four years, it is evident that the Conservatives are determined to push through their own agenda on their own timeline.
I feel strongly that it is important for Canadians to know that their privacy is being protected, especially in the digital age that we live in. However, just because the Conservatives have not conducted the mandatory five-year review of the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, PIPEDA, does not mean that we should rush through an unbalanced bill.
I feel very strongly that the bill before us was not well studied and needs to be fixed before it is passed through the House. In fact, the Conservatives did not support or submit any amendments to the bill because they did not think that would allow enough time to pass the bill before the election. This sounds politically expedient to me. Canadians deserve better than what the Conservatives are giving them.
The issues surrounding online privacy and safety are not new problems. Rather, they are existing problems that have become increasingly harder to protect against as technology continues to advance. Therefore, given the changing nature of the problem, it is important that the legislation that we create also evolves.
I am glad that after so many years of inaction, we are finally considering legislation to address online privacy issues. My colleague, the member for Terrebonne—Blainville, tried to take action to protect Canadians' privacy back in 2012 with Bill C-475. Unfortunately, that bill, which was stricter and more effective than the bill before us although very similar to it, was voted down by the Conservatives.
The Conservatives have become very good at pretending they know how to do their jobs and protect Canadians. They are actually able to stand up in this House and lie through their teeth in saying that this is a balanced bill, and they believe that.
Online privacy and security breaches have the potential to significantly harm an individual. Protecting these rights is important for all Canadians so that we do not put anyone potentially in harm's way.
Some Canadians may feel that the bill does not affect them in their daily lives, but I can assure them that Bill S-4 would affect every single Canadian.
One part of the bill that I am very concerned about pertains to the sharing of our personal information. The bill contains a provision that would make it easier for companies to share our information without our knowledge or consent, without a warrant, and with zero oversight. It is troubling to me that there is no mechanism in place for oversight.
Do the Conservatives remember the ruling in Regina v. Spencer? I do. In this decision, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that Canadians have a reasonable expectation of privacy online. More specifically, the Supreme Court stipulated that spyware data cannot be disclosed to a third party without a warrant.
In light of this decision, it is questionable whether certain provisions in Bill S-4 are even constitutional. There are limits on what the government can do, but the Conservatives seem to have forgotten that.
We are demanding that every clause pertaining to the warrantless disclosure of information be withdrawn out of respect for the Supreme Court ruling and the privacy of Canadians.
There is no doubt that the Conservatives have a dark past when it comes to protecting personal information, and this bill would only add to that darkness. The lack of oversight and the allowance of warrantless disclosure has led to 1.2 million secret requests from Conservative government agencies for personal information from telecommunications companies in one year alone. Under the current Prime Minister, staggering numbers like this show that something needs to change, and it starts with this bill.
The Conservatives' hesitation to accept amendments to this bill makes me question whose interests they are truly protecting. Are they protecting the interests of Canadians, who deserve to trust that their personal information will be protected, or are the Conservatives protecting their own self-serving interests?
We would like to see this bill contain a mandatory data loss or data breach reporting mechanism. However, the bill in its current form would most likely result in fewer breaches being reported. It would be up to the organization that suffered the breach to determine if the breach posed a real and significant risk of harm. Companies want to save their reputation and money, so why would they inconvenience themselves by reporting a potentially embarrassing breach of privacy that could cause consumers to lose trust in them when they could just hide it instead?
There would be no incentive to report a breach and no advantage to doing so. This is a conflict of interest that would deprive Canadians of the information that they need to make informed choices about which companies they decide to share their personal information with.
Furthermore, because of the Conservatives' inaction, PIPEDA, which is supposed to be updated every five years, is falling far behind international standards. Since the first statutory review in 2007, subsequent attempts to amend PIPEDA have died on the order paper. After this long wait to update PIPEDA, the bill would simply not go far enough to protect Canadians in this digital era. We as Canadians are getting the message that the government does not take the protection of personal information seriously.
I, along with my fellow NDP members, truly do not ask for much when it comes to this bill. We have long called for the modernization of Canadian privacy laws. They are not up to date. Instead of making it easy for companies to share our information, the government should put deterrent penalties put in place that would require or encourage these private companies to respect and follow Canadian laws. Following that, we insist that the provisions in Bill S-4 to allow organizations to share personal information without consent or a warrant be removed and that the loopholes in PIPEDA, which do the same thing, be closed.
The point of the Constitution and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is to protect the very rights and freedoms contained within them. Warrantless access to our subscriber data and personal information most definitely poses a risk to Canadian privacy.
Modernizing the laws that govern the protection of personal protection is an important issue in the digital age. However, ramming through a bill that has huge holes, such as this bill, is not a fix that can make up for years of inaction by the current government. I urge the Conservatives to accept the amendments to this bill so that we can work collaboratively to ensure that all Canadians can trust that their personal information is being protected to the best of the government's ability.
One of the other things that was very troubling was seeing time allocation moved for the 97th time. Time allocation basically puts closure on this bill. It does not allow for all of the members to bring the views of their constituents into the House, which is one of our primary jobs.
This is the 97th time the Conservatives have done it and I can assure you, Mr. Speaker, they are not going to get the chance after October 19, because Canadians are tired. They have seen democracy and the workings of democracy crumble. These guys are going to be out.
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-01 14:56 [p.14401]
Mr. Speaker, last week there was another shooting in Surrey. That is 28 shootings in just over two months. Every week brings more shootings and more fear in our community. People should not have to live in fear. Immediate action is needed, but the Conservatives are stalling and refusing to commit to a timeline for the arrival of new RCMP officers in Surrey.
Will the minister please provide a clear timeline today for the deployment of new officers in my community?
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-01 16:18 [p.14414]
Mr. Speaker, I listened to the speech very carefully the last number of minutes. When it comes to facts, that is not something the Conservatives really want to discuss.
The member talked about how the Conservatives wanted to put money back into the pockets of Canadians. In this case, they are taking money out of the pockets of Canadians and giving it to their friends, the big banks. That is a lot of money, $180 million a year, that they are taking from Canadians, giving it to their friends and helping them steal from Canadians.
What would an NDP government do after October 19?
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
NDP (BC)
View Jasbir Sandhu Profile
2015-06-01 16:46 [p.14418]
Mr. Speaker, I listened to that speech very carefully. The member talks about the NDP and the Liberals raising taxes. The only tax I see in this is in the guise of fees on consumers.
The Conservatives are helping their banking friends to pick the pockets of Canadians. Instead of putting money back in their pockets, they are actually helping the corporations to pick the pockets of Canadians to the tune of $180 million. They have had nine years to bring in legislation to help protect Canadians and help Canadians keep their money where it should be, yet now they are saying that they will be looking into this.
My question is simple. Will the Conservatives do that before the House rises in a couple of weeks?
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