Trudeau announces $252M emergency aid package for farmers, food processors hit by COVID-19


>>Announcer: THIS IS A CBC NEWS SPECIAL PRESENTATION.>>Rosemary: HI, EVERYONE. I’M ROSEMARY BARTON HERE IN THE NATION’S CAPITAL. GLAD YOU ARE JOINING US ONCE AGAIN ON CBC TELEVISION, “CBC NEWS NETWORK” STREAMING AROUND THE WORLD ON OUR APP AND CBC.CA. PRIME MINISTER JUSTIN TRUDEAU WILL ADDRESS CANADIANS VERY SOON, A LITTLE BIT EARLIER THAN HE USUALLY DOES, EXPECTED IN JUST MOMENTS. HE IS ALSO EXPECTED TODAY TO ANNOUNCE NEW FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR FARMERS. THEY ARE FACING A LOT OF COMPLICATIONS BECAUSE OF THE PANDEMIC. MANY FARMERS SAY THE PLANTING AND GROWING SEASON ARE IN JEOPARDY IF THEY DON’T GET SOME HELP. THE RELIEF MONEY COULD BE SIGNIFICANT. I SHOULD TELL YOU THAT THE CANADIAN FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURE WAS ASKING FOR $2.6 BILLION TO HELP MAINTAIN CANADA’S FOOD SECURITY, AND IT WOULD HELP A NUMBER OF FARMING SECTORS, OBVIOUSLY, INCLUDING, AS WE SAID, FARMING ITSELF, VEGETABLES, FRUITS, BUT ALSO MEAT PLANTS, WHICH WE KNOW HAVE HAD A HARD TIME, BEEF, POULTRY, PORK PRODUCERS AND THE FOOD PROCESSING SECTOR. WE’RE ALSO COVERING DEVELOPMENTS OF THAT FATAL HELICOPTER CRASH OFF THE COAST OF GREECE LAST WEEK THAT KILLED SIX CANADIAN FORCES MEMBERS. TODAY THE FAMILY OF ONE OF THEM, SUB-LIEUTENANT MATTHEW PYKE RELEASED A VERY MOVING STATEMENT AND WE’LL SHARE SOME OF THAT WITH YOU IF WE HAVE THE TIME LATER. I’LL BRING IN MY COLLEAGUES VASSY KAPELOS AND DAVID COCHRANE. I’M BEING TOLD WE HAVE ABOUT 30 SECONDS, SO MAYBE WE WON’T EVEN TALK TO YOU. I WILL SAY THAT AGRICULTURE ACCOUNTS FOR 11% OF CANADA’S GOODS GDP, ALMOST 10% OF OUR TOTAL MERCHANDISE TRADE. WE HAVE SO MUCH. WE PRODUCE SO MUCH, IN FACT, THAT A LARGE PART OF IT IS EXPORTED TO OTHER PLACES. AND IT HAS LEFT FARMERS AND PRODUCERS IN A VERY DIFFICULT SITUATION WITH A LOT OF TIMES TOO MUCH OF WHAT THEY PRODUCE AND THEN OTHER TIMES NOT KNOWING WHAT THEY SHOULD PUT IN THE GROUND BECAUSE THEY DON’T KNOW IF THERE WILL BE A MARKET TO SELL IT WITHIN CANADA. WE WON’T TALK TO THE TWO OF YOU. WE’LL TALK AFTER. HERE IS THE PRIME MINISTER OF CANADA NOW.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: HELLO, EVERYONE. BEFORE WE GET STARTED I WANT TO NOTE THAT TODAY MARKS THE 75TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE LIBERATION OF THE NETHERLANDS. ON THIS DAY WE REMEMBER THE CANADIANS AND NEWFOUNDLANDERS WHO LIBERATING THE NETHERLANDS FROM THE TYRANNY OF THE NAZIS. WE ALSO PAY TRIBUTE TO THE DEEP BONDS THAT WERE FORGED BETWEEN CANADA AND THE NETHERLANDS. WE HONOUR THE INCREDIBLE COURAGE AND SACRIFICE OF OUR VETERANS IN WHOM WE ARE FOREVER IN THEIR DEBT. TIME AND TIME AGAIN CANADIANS STEP UP IN PERIODS OF CRISIS TO HELP EACH OTHER AND TO HELP OUR FRIENDS. WE SAW IT 75 YEARS AGO ON THE BATTLEFIELDS OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR, AND WE’RE SEEING IT ONCE AGAIN DURING THIS PANDEMIC. [ Voice of Interpreter ] THESE DAYS, EVERYONE WORKING IN THE FOOD INDUSTRY IS WORKING HARDER THAN EVER TO FILL THE SHELVES OF OUR GROCERY STORES. THEY CONTINUE TO WORK LONG HOURS TO FEED US, AND THE PANDEMIC IS MAKING THINGS MORE COMPLICATED FOR THEM. WORKERS MUST TAKE ADDITIONAL MEASURES TO PROTECT THEMSELVES. THEY MUST CHANGE THE WAY THEY WORK AND RESPECT PHYSICAL DISTANCING. AND SINCE HOTELS AND RESTAURANTS ARE CLOSED, MANY PRODUCERS ARE NOW DEALING WITH SIGNIFICANT SURPLUSES OF CERTAIN GOODS. FROM THE OUTSET, WE HAVE SAID WE WOULD BE THERE FOR PEOPLE WHO NEED A HAND, SO TODAY WE HAVE ANNOUNCING A NEW INVESTMENT OF MORE THAN $252 MILLION TO HELP THE AGRI-FOOD INDUSTRY AND HELP IT GET THROUGH THIS CRISIS. OF THAT AMOUNT, WE WILL BE ALLOCATING MORE THAN $77 MILLION TO FOOD PROCESSORS IN ORDER TO PROTECT THE SAFETY OF THEIR WORKERS. THIS IS MONEY THAT THEY WILL BE ABLE TO USE TO BUY MORE PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT OR ADJUST THEIR HYGIENE PROTOCOLS, OR OTHER MEASURES SUCH AS PHYSICAL DISTANCING. IT WILL ALSO ALLOW PROCESSORS TO ADAPT THEIR PLANTS SO THAT THEY CAN PRODUCE MORE GOODS IN CANADA. [ End of Interpretation ]. TODAY WE ARE ANNOUNCING MORE THAN $77 MILLION TO SUPPORT FOOD PROCESSORS DURING THIS CRISIS. THIS IS MONEY THAT THEY CAN USE TO PURCHASE PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT FOR WORKERS, ADAPT TO HEALTH PROTOCOLS, AND SUPPORT OTHER SOCIAL DISTANCING MEASURES. IT WILL ALSO HELP EXPAND OR ADAPT OUR PROCESSING CAPACITY TO INCREASE THE AMOUNT OF CANADIAN PRODUCTS WE MAKE DOMESTICALLY. [ Voice of Interpreter ] TO HELP PORK AND BEEF PRODUCERS, WE ARE PUTTING IN PLACE AGRI RECOVERY, A NATIONAL PROGRAM WITH AN ENVELOPE OF $125 MILLION TO HELP FARMERS ADAPT TO MARKET CHANGES. FARMS AND PORK PRODUCING BUSINESSES ARE PRODUCING THINGS LIKE BEEF AND BACON FOR US, AND WE HAVE TO ENSURE THAT THOSE ANIMALS CAN REMAIN ON THE FARM LONGER THAN USUAL, AND THAT IS COSTLY. THE MONEY WE’RE ANNOUNCING TODAY WILL HELP PORK AND BEEF PRODUCERS TO ADAPT TO THIS CRISIS. THIS IS AN INITIAL INVESTMENT, AND IF WE HAVE TO DO MORE, WE WILL DO MORE. [ End of Interpretation ]. TO HELP CATTLE AND HOG PRODUCERS, WE WILL LAUNCH A $125 MILLION NATIONAL AGRI RECOVERY INITIATIVE. FARMS AND PROCESSING PLANTS ARE RAISING MORE ANIMALS THAN THE SYSTEM CAN PROCESS INTO THINGS LIKE STEAK AND BACON BECAUSE OF COVID-19. FOR MANY FARMERS, THIS CRISIS MEANS THAT THEY HAVE TO KEEP ANIMALS FOR LONGER PERIODS OF TIME, AND THAT CAN BE EXPENSIVE. SO WITH THIS FUNDING, WE’RE GIVING EXTRA HELP TO BEEF AND PORK PRODUCERS SO THAT THEY CAN ADAPT TO THIS CRISIS. THIS IS AN INITIAL INVESTMENT, AND IF WE NEED TO ADD MORE, WE WILL. [ Voice of Interpreter ] WITH RESPECT TO DAIRY FARMERS, WE INTEND TO WORK WITH ALL THE PARTIES IN THE HOUSE TO INCREASE BY $200 MILLION THE CREDIT LINE OF THE CANADIAN DAIRY COMMISSION. THE COMMISSION ALREADY HAS A PROGRAM IN PLACE TO STORE DAIRY PRODUCTS. IT STORES BUTTER AND CHEESE AND HAS BEEN SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THIS CRISIS, AND HOPES AND EXPECTS TO REACH ITS MAXIMUM CAPACITY SOON. BY INCREASING ITS CREDIT LINE, WE WILL NOT WASTE FRESH PRODUCTS AND DAIRY PRODUCERS WILL BE MORE ABLE TO DEAL WITH THE CONSEQUENCES OF THIS CRISIS. [ End of Interpretation ]. — CLOSED, TOO MUCH OF CERTAIN TYPES OF FOOD LIKE MILK, BUTTER AND POTATOES IS BEING PRODUCED. WHILE SOME DONATIONS HAVE BEEN MADE TO FOOD BANKS, WE DON’T HAVE THE CAPACITY RIGHT NOW TO REDISTRIBUTE SUCH LARGE QUANTITIES OF FOOD. AND SOME PRODUCERS HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO THROW OUT THEIR PRODUCT. IT’S A WASTE OF FOOD AND A LOSS OF REVENUE FOR THE PEOPLE WHO WORKED SO HARD TO PRODUCE IT. TO AVOID THIS, WE’RE LAUNCHING A SURPLUS FOOD PURCHASE PROGRAM STARTING WITH A $50 MILLION FUND. THE GOVERNMENT WILL BUY LARGE QUANTITIES OF CERTAIN PRODUCTS AT RISK OF GOING WASTE, LIKE, SAY, POTATOES OR POULTRY, AND REDISTRIBUTE THEM TO ORGANIZATIONS ADDRESSING FOOD INSECURITY. THIS WILL HELP ENSURE THAT OUR FARMERS ARE BEING COMPENSATED FOR THEIR HARD WORK AND THAT OUR MOST VULNERABLE HAVE ACCESS TO FRESH FOOD DURING THIS CRISIS. TAKEN TOGETHER, THESE MEASURES REPRESENT THE $252 MILLION INVESTMENT TO SUPPORT THE PEOPLE WHO KEEP OUR GROCERY STORES STOCKED AND OUR FAMILIES FED. [ Voice of Interpreter ] AND IN FACT, I’D LIKE TO TAKE A MOMENT TO THANK MINISTER BIBEAU FOR HER WORK ON THIS FILE. [ End of Interpretation ]. WE KNOW THAT FARMERS STILL HAVE CONCERNS ABOUT WHAT THIS PANDEMIC MEANS FOR THEIR INDUSTRY LONG TERM. HAVING ENOUGH WORKERS FOR HARVESTING LATER IN THE SEASON, HAVING ENOUGH PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT FOR WORKERS. THESE ARE VALID CONCERNS, AND I CAN ASSURE YOU THAT WE ARE WORKING WITH FARMERS, STAKEHOLDERS AND PROVINCES AND TERRITORIES TO FIND LASTING SOLUTIONS. I WANT TO CLOSE TODAY BY THANKING EVERY PERSON WHO WORKS IN OUR FOOD INDUSTRY. PEOPLE ARE SPENDING A LOT MORE TIME IN THE KITCHEN COOKING FOR AN ELDERLY NEIGHBOUR, COOKING FOR THEMSELVES, DISCOVERING NEW RECIPES, TRYING TO MAKE SOURDOUGH. THESE DAYS ESPECIALLY COOKING AND BAKING IS ABOUT MORE THAN NOURISHMENT. IT’S ALSO ABOUT RELIEVING STRESS, FINDING A COMMUNITY, SUPPORTING EACH OTHER, CREATING MEMORIES. YOU HELP MAKE THAT POSSIBLE, SO WE’RE HERE FOR ALL OF YOU IN THE AGRI-FOOD INDUSTRY, AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO BE HERE FOR YOU. [ Voice of Interpreter ] TO ALL OF YOU WORKING IN THE FOOD INDUSTRY, THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING YOU’RE DOING FOR US. WE ARE THERE FOR YOU, AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO BE THERE FOR YOU. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>[ No Interpretation ].>>Reporter: [ Voice of Interpreter ]. GOOD MORNING, MR. TRUDEAU, TODAY YOU ARE THANKING ALL THE FARMERS AND FOOD PRODUCERS, BUT THE CANADIAN FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURE WAS ASKING YOU FOR $2.6 BILLION IN ASSISTANCE BECAUSE THE CRISIS IS REALLY HITTING THEM HARD. YOU’RE NOWHERE NEAR THAT AMOUNT. WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THEM?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WELL, THIS IS AN INITIAL INVESTMENT. WE KNOW THAT THERE WILL CERTAINLY NEED TO BE MORE DONE AS THE NEEDS INCREASE, AND THIS IS MONEY THAT WE ARE SENDING OUT IMMEDIATELY TO HELP OUR FARMERS AND AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS, AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO WORK WITH THEM TO ADDRESS OTHER NEEDS.>>FOLLOW-UP?>>Reporter: I’D LIKE YOU TO COMMENT ON THE SHORT-TERM PROJECTIONS OF HEALTH CANADA. ONCE AGAIN THE NUMBER OF DEATHS IS HIGHER THAN WHAT HEALTH CANADA HAD EXPECTED FOR NOW. WHY IS CANADA TOO OPTIMISTIC ABOUT ITS RESULTS?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: THE MODELLING WE HAVE ESTABLISHED IS THERE TO GUIDE OUR DECISIONS AND HELP US TO PREPARE FOR ANY EVENTUALITY. THIS HAS NEVER BEEN A PREDICTION OF WHAT WOULD HAPPEN BUT RATHER A GENERAL IDEA OF WHAT COULD HAPPEN, AND THEREFORE WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO ADJUST AS THINGS WENT ON. WE SAW AN ADJUSTMENT IN THE CURVE, BUT AS YOU SAY, THERE IS STILL REASON FOR CONCERN AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO ADJUST OUR PROJECTIONS AND RESPOND AS THE REALITY CHANGES. [ End of Interpretation ]. MODELLING HAS ALWAYS BEEN THERE, NOT AS A CRYSTAL BALL TO TELL US WHAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN BUT TO TELL US THE RANGE OF THINGS THAT MIGHT HAPPEN, DEPENDING ON OUR BEHAVIOURS, DEPENDING ON MEASURES BROUGHT IN. THAT’S WHY WE’VE BEEN CONSTANTLY UPDATING IT, CONSTANTLY MOVING FORWARD WITH NEW MEASURES TO MAKE SURE WE’RE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO MAKE CANADIANS SAFE, AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO DO JUST THAT.>>Operator: NEXT QUESTION, STEPHANIE LEVITT, THE CANADIAN PRESS. LINE OPEN.>>Reporter: GOOD MORNING, PRIME MINISTER. WHEN YOU BRIEFED CANADIANS ABOUT THE HELICOPTER CRASH LAST WEEK, DID YOU KNOW THERE WERE EYEWITNESSS, AND WHY DID IT TAKE 12 HOURS TO CONFIRM THAT THE HELICOPTER HAD CRASHED?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: THE MILITARY HAS VERY IMPORTANT PROTOCOLS IN PLACE WHEN THERE IS A TRAGIC INCIDENT LIKE THIS AROUND INFORMING THE NEXT OF KIN, OF TALKING TO THE FAMILIES AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE BEFORE SHARING INFORMATION WITH THE GENERAL PUBLIC. ALL THOSE PROTOCOLS WERE FOLLOWED.>>FOLLOW-UP QUESTION?>>Reporter: YEAH, AS A FOLLOW-UP, IN YOUR REMARKS YOU MADE A POINT OF THANKING MINISTER BIBEAU WITH REGARDS TO HER WORK ON AGRICULTURE. THERE’S BEEN A LOT OF FRUSTRATION COMING OUT OF THAT COMMUNITY, THAT THE RELATIVELY DELAYED RESPONSE TO THEIR DEMANDS AS IT COMPARES TO, LET’S SAY MORE URBAN CONCERNS, IS A DIRECT REFLECTION OF THE LACK OF SUPPORT FOR YOUR GOVERNMENT IN THE PRAIRIE PROVINCES. CAN YOU ADDRESS THAT?>>WE MOVED FORWARD INITIALLY WITH SUPPORTS FOR WORKERS IN ALL INDUSTRIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY. WITH THE CANADA EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT, WITH THE WAGE SUBSIDY, WITH MEASURES TO SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESSES, THESE ARE THE KINDS OF THINGS THAT HAVE HAD AN IMPACT IN URBAN AND RURAL AREAS. FURTHERMORE, WE’VE CONTINUED TO WORK WITH FARMERS AND FOOD PRODUCERS RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY TO RESPOND TO THEIR NEEDS. WE HAVE A LARGE AND VARIED COUNTRY IN TERMS OF THE CHALLENGES BEING FACED IN DIFFERENT REGIONS, AND WE’VE BEEN VERY DILIGENT ABOUT RESPONDING TO AGRICULTURAL INDUSTRY RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY, INCLUDING WITH A SIGNIFICANT ANNOUNCEMENT TODAY THAT’S GOING TO HELP PEOPLE RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY.>>THANK YOU. OPERATOR, NEXT QUESTION.>>Operator: THANK YOU. MERCI. NEXT QUESTION, STEVE SCHEER, REUTERS, LINE OPEN.>>Reporter: THANK YOU, PRIME MINISTER, FOR TAKING MY QUESTION. THE CANADIAN FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURE HAD ASKED FOR SUPPORT FOR ALL FARMS. THE ANNOUNCEMENT TODAY SEEMS TARGETED TO SPECIFIC SECTORS. WHAT DO YOU SAY TO PRODUCERS [INDISCERNIBLE] VEGETABLE INDUSTRY, THE GRAIN INDUSTRY, THAT ARE ALSO FACING [INDISCERNIBLE]. >>Prime Minister Trudeau: EVERY STEP OF THE WAY IN THIS CRISIS WE’VE BEEN RESPONDING IN TARGETED WAYS TO THE INDUSTRIES THAT NEED OUR SUPPORT IN AS RAPID A FASHION AS WE CAN. THE FIRST THINGS WE DID WAS PUT OUT BROAD-BASED SUPPORT TO WORKERS IN INDUSTRIES RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY THAT COULD CONTINUE TO PAY THE RENT, PAY THEIR GROCERIES AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE WITH THE CERB, WITH NOW THE WAGE SUBSIDY, WITH OTHER MEASURES TO SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESSES, AND WE’RE CONTINUING TO DO JUST THAT. THERE ARE CERTAIN SECTORS THAT ARE MORE PRESSING IN THEIR NEEDS FOR SUPPORTS, BUT LIKE I SAID, THIS IS ONLY AN INITIAL AMOUNT OF SUPPORT. WE WILL CONTINUE TO WORK WITH FARMERS, WITH STAKEHOLDERS AND INDUSTRY REPRESENTATIVES, WITH PROVINCES AND TERRITORIES TO ENSURE THAT FOOD — OUR FOOD CAPACITY IN THIS COUNTRY AND THOSE PEOPLE WHO WORK SO INCREDIBLY HARD EVERY SINGLE DAY TO FEED CANADIANS GET THE SUPPORT THAT THEY NEED THROUGH THIS CRISIS AND BEYOND.>>AS A FOLLOW-UP?>>Reporter: AND YOU SAY THIS IS AN INITIAL AMOUNT OF FUNDING, BUT THE INITIAL ASK FROM THE CANADIAN FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURE WAS $2.6 BILLION. SPRING SEEDING IS STARTING NOW. DO YOU HAVE A TIMELINE FOR WHEN THE ADDITIONAL FUNDING YOU’RE SAYING COULD COME IS GOING TO SHOW UP?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE’RE RESPONDING TO PRESSING NEEDS IN TERMS OF PROCESSORS, IN TERMS OF PREDICTABILITY AND SUPPORT FOR FARMERS AND FOR PRODUCERS. WE KNOW THAT THERE IS MORE TO DO, AND WE WILL KEEP WORKING WITH THEM TO DETERMINE EXACTLY HOW WE CAN BEST HELP. WE WILL BE THERE FOR AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS BECAUSE THEY ARE SO IMPORTANT TO ALL CANADIANS. THE HARD WORK THEY DO AND THE SUPPORT THEY GIVE US ALL NEEDS TO BE RESPECTED, REFLECTED ON AND SUSTAINABLY SUPPORTED. [ No Interpretation ]>>Reporter: [ Voice of Interpreter ]. YES, GOOD MORNING, MR. TRUDEAU. MANY FRUIT AND VEGETABLE PRODUCERS ARE WORRIED ABOUT THE SITUATION BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF FOREIGN TEMPORARY WORKERS. WILL YOU PROVIDE SPECIFIC HELP TO THEM?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WELL, I CAN SAY THAT STARTING NOW OR UP UNTIL NOW WE HAVE RECEIVED ALMOST 90% OF FOREIGN TEMPORARY WORKERS THAT WE WOULD NORMALLY BE BRINGING IN AT THIS TIME OF THE YEAR. WE ALSO RECOGNIZE THAT DURING THE HARVESTING SEASON THERE WILL BE A NEED FOR ADDITIONAL FOREIGN TEMPORARY WORKERS AND WE ARE CURRENTLY WORKING WITH THE INDUSTRY TO ENSURE THAT WE CAN MEET THOSE NEEDS.>>FOLLOW-UP?>>Reporter: YES. THE FACILITIES LIKE MEAT PACKERS ARE AREAS OF MAJOR OUTBREAK. DO YOU INTEND TO SHUT THEM DOWN IF THE SITUATION DOES NOT IMPROVE?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: THE MEASURES THAT WE ARE ANNOUNCING TODAY WILL IMPROVE THE SITUATION IN SLAUGHTERHOUSES AND MEAT PACKING FACILITIES BY FURTHER PROTECTING THE EMPLOYEES. WE KNOW IT’S IMPORTANT TO PROTECT THE EMPLOYEES AND ENSURE THAT THE FOOD SUPPLY CHAIN REMAINS IN TACT, AND THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE’RE DOING. [ End of Interpretation ].>>Reporter: THESE COMPANIES THAT RUN THESE MEAT PACKING PLANTS, THEY ARE BIG MULTINATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS, SO WHY IS IT UP TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO MAKE SURE THAT THEY KEEP THEIR WORKERS SAFE?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE ARE, OF COURSE, SUPPORTING THE PROVINCES ON THEIR INITIATIVES TO KEEP THE WORKERS SAFE. THIS IS SOMETHING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMET IS HAPPY TO HELP WITH, INDEED THE RESPONSIBILITY IS SHARED FROM THE OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF THE PLANTS TO THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT, BUT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS HAPPY TO BE PART OF CREATING SOLUTIONS IN THIS SITUATION WHERE WE’RE IN AN UNPRECEDENTED CRISIS. WE NEED TO KEEP PEOPLE SAFE, BUT WE ALSO NEED TO ENSURE A SUPPLY OF FOOD FOR CANADIANS.>>Reporter: AND A LOT OF THE WORKERS THAT WORK IN THESE PLANTS, THEY ARE NOT JUST WORKING IN CRAMPED CONDITIONS, THEY ARE LIVING IN CRAMPED CONDITIONS. IS ANY OF THIS MONEY OR IS THERE ANYTHING MORE THE GOVERNMENT CAN DO TO HELP THEM — TO KEEP THEM FROM SPREADING WORKPLACE BUT ALSO AT HOME?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: PART OF THE MONEY THAT WE’RE SENDING TO HELP THIS INDUSTRY AND THESE AREAS IS TO LOOK AT THE DIFFERENT WAYS THEY CAN KEEP THEIR EMPLOYEES AND THESE WORKERS SAFE. THESE ARE THINGS THAT PROVINCES WILL HAVE TO LOOK AT VERY CLOSELY, BUT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, AS ALWAYS, WILL BE THERE TO SUPPORT AND TO MAKE SURE THAT CANADIANS’ FOOD SUPPLY IS SAFE WHILE WE KEEP PEOPLE SAFE FROM COVID-19. [ Voice of Interpreter ] OF COURSE THERE ARE SHARED RESPONSIBILITIES BETWEEN THE OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF THESE FACILITIES IN THE PROVINCE, AND THE PROVINCES THAT HAVE CONTROL OVER WHAT HAPPENS THERE AS WELL. BUT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WILL CERTAINLY BE THERE TO HELP BECAUSE THIS IS A CONCERN FOR ALL OF US IN TERMS OF ENSURING THE INTEGRITY OF THE FOOD SUPPLY IN CANADA, AND ALSO ENSURING THE SAFETY OF THE WORKERS AND AVOIDING SEEING ANY PROGRESS IN THE DISEASE.>>Reporter: CAN YOU TELL US EXACTLY WHEN THAT MONEY WILL BE IN THE POCKETS OF FARMERS AND PROCESSORS? BECAUSE WE’RE HEARING THAT SOME OF THOSE MEASURES ARE NOT READY TO BE IMPLEMENTED, PARTICULARLY THOSE FOR DAIRY PRODUCERS.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: FIRST OF ALL, I’D LIKE TO POINT OUT THAT MINISTER BIBEAU HAS BEEN WORKING VERY HARD ON THESE ISSUES, AND SHE WILL BE AT THE PRESS CONFERENCE LATER ON TO TAKE SPECIFIC QUESTIONS ON THAT. REGARDING SUPPORT FOR DAIRY PRODUCERS, WE WILL BE INCREASING THEIR CREDIT LINE. THIS IS ONE THAT THEY’VE HAD FOR SOME TIME, BUT IN ORDER TO DO THAT, WE WILL HAVE TO PASS LEGISLATION IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, SO WE WILL BE WORKING WITH ALL THE PARTIES IN THE HOUSE TO HELP OUR DAIRY PRODUCERS.>>Reporter: NOW ONE OF THE IMPACTS OF THE CRISIS WOULD BE ON THE COST OF GROCERIES IN CANADA, AND I GUESS THAT WILL BE SEEN IN THE COMING WEEKS AND MONTHS. HAVE YOU INCLUDED SOMETHING TO DEAL WITH THAT? IS THERE SOMETHING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT CAN DO TO HELP CANADIANS AND FAMILIES WHO MAY HAVE TROUBLE ABSORBING THOSE EXTRA COSTS?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: FROM THE VERY OUTSET, THIS GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN THERE TO HELP CANADIANS, WHETHER IT’S THROUGH THE CANADA EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT OR THE WAGE SUBSIDY OR SPECIFIC MEASURES FOR COMMUNITIES AND CHARITIES. WE WILL ALWAYS RESPOND TO THE NEEDS OF CANADIANS. WE NEED TO KEEP PEOPLE SAFE AND HEALTHY. AND FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE CRISIS, THE GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN THERE AND WILL CONTINUE TO BE. [ End of Interpretation ].>>Referee: — >>Reporter: YOU TALKED ABOUT FOOD WASTE. DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MUCH FOOD CANADIAN FARMERS WERE FORCED TO THROW OUT AND IS THIS ANNOUNCEMENT ALREADY TOO LATE WHEN WE THINK ABOUT WHAT’S BEEN LOST?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE KNOW WE ARE IN A AN PRT CRISIS AND WE HAVED TO UNPRECEDENTED CRISIS AND WE HAVE HAD TO RESPOND VERY QUICKLY. FARMERS HAVE HAD TO DISPOSE OF SURPLUS PRODUCTION, BUT AT THE SAME TIME THIS IS A NEW PROGRAM WE ARE BRINGING IN AROUND SURPLUS FOOD THAT WILL INVEST $50 MILLION IN BUYING MUCH OF THAT SURPLUS AND ENSURING THAT IT DOESN’T GO TO WASTE, IT GOES TO COMMUNITIES AND FAMILIES WHO ACTUALLY NEED SUPPORT IN TERMS OF FOOD SECURITY. IT IS NOT A PERFECT SITUATION BY ANY STRETCH, BUT WE ARE DOING WHAT WE CAN TO TRY AND MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE ARE REWARDED FOR THEIR HARD WORK AND THAT OTHERS AREN’T GOING HUNGRY. [ Voice of Interpreter ] FROM THE VERY BEGINNING WE’VE BEEN TRYING TO RESPOND TO THIS UNPRECEDENTED SITUATION, AND WE HAVE SEEN SOME PRODUCERS HAVING TO DESTROY SOME OF THEIR PRODUCTS. NOW WE DON’T WANT TO SEE THIS KIND OF WASTE HAPPENING, SO WE HAVE CREATED A $50 MILLION PROGRAM WHICH WILL ALLOW US TO PAY THE PRODUCERS FOR THEIR WORK WHILE ENSURING THE FOOD SECURITY OF ALL PEOPLE IN CANADA, INCLUDING THE MOST VULNERABLE. [ End of Interpretation ]. — FOOD EXPORTERS IN THE WORLD. HOW BAD IS OUR BACKLOG TO GET THE FOOD OUT AND WHAT IS THE HELP FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT COMING TO HELP THE FARMERS PLAN ACCORDINGLY?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE HAVE SEEN SIGNIFICANT DISRUPTIONS IN GLOBAL SUPPLY CHAINS. WE ARE WORKING VERY HARD TO CONTINUE TO MAINTAIN SUPPLY CHAINS TO OUR MAJOR MARKETS, PARTICULARLY THE UNITED STATES, BUT ALSO OTHERS AROUND THE WORLD, BECAUSE FOOD SECURITY IS A PREOCCUPATION FOR EVERYONE, AND CANADA IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE SOLUTION. WE NEED TO MAKE SURE WE’RE DOING THE BEST WE CAN. WE ALSO NEED TO MAKE SURE WE HAVE ENOUGH FOOD FOR CANADIANS AS WELL, BUT WE ARE CONFIDENT THAT OUR EXTRAORDINARY, HARD-WORKING FARMERS AND PRODUCERS IN THE AGRICULTURAL INDUSTRY WILL BE UP TO THE TASK, AND WE WILL BE THERE TO SUPPORT THEM EVERY STEP OF THE WAY.>>Reporter: PRIME MINISTER, EARLIER YOU SAID THAT YOUR GOVERNMENT WAS WORKING WITH FARMERS AND STAKEHOLDERS TO FIND LONG-TERM SOLUTIONS FOR LABOUR SHORTAGES FOR FRUIT AND VEGETABLE PRODUCERS. I’M WONDERING IF YOU CAN JUST ELABORATE ON WHAT OPTIONS YOU’RE LOOKING AT TO ADDRESS THOSE LABOUR SHORTAGES.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE RECOGNIZE THAT THERE IS A NEED FOR EXTRA HELP WHEN IT COMES TO HARVESTING FRUITS AND VEGETABLES IN THE COMING MONTHS. THAT’S WHY MINISTER BIBEAU, WHO WILL BE AT THE PRESS CONFERENCE AT NOON, WILL BE ABLE TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS ON WHAT EXACTLY WE’RE LOOKING AT IN TERMS OF ENSURING THAT PRODUCERS HAVE THE SUPPORT THEY NEED.>>Reporter: IF I COULD SWITCH GEARS A LITTLE BIT, YOU’RE ANNOUNCING MONEY TODAY FOR THE AGRICULTURAL SECTOR. THE AIRLINE INDUSTRY IS SAYING THEY WILL NOT BE ABLE TO GET THROUGH THE FINANCIAL CHALLENGES OF COVID-19 WITHOUT SOME SORT OF GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE, AND I’M WONDERING WHEN THERE IS AN ANNOUNCEMENT EXPECTED ON THIS AND IF IT WILL COME WITH ANY CONDITIONS.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: FIRST OF ALL, I WANT TO HIGHLIGHT HOW PLEASED WE ARE THAT A NUMBER OF AIRLINES HAVE TAKEN ON THE WAGE SUBSIDY, THE ABILITY TO REHIRE HARD-WORKING CANADIANS WHO HAVEN’T BEEN ABLE TO WORK BECAUSE FLIGHTS HAVE BEEN SO MASSIVELY REDUCED IS A GOOD THING FOR THEIR FAMILIES, GOOD THING FOR THEIR COMMUNITIES AND A GOOD THING FOR THE INDUSTRY AS WELL, TO ENSURE THAT PEOPLE WHO WORK IN THE AIRLINE INDUSTRY WILL CONTINUE TO BE CONNECTED TO THOSE JOBS THAT WILL COME BACK ONCE THIS PANDEMIC IS THROUGH. AT THE SAME TIME, AS I SAID YESTERDAY, WE ARE LOOKING AT MORE SPECIFIC SECTORAL SUPPORTS FOR INDUSTRIES IN AREAS THAT ARE PARTICULARLY HARD HIT BECAUSE OF COVID-19. I THINK OF THE TOURISM SECTOR. WE THINK OF THE ENERGY SECTOR. WE THINK OF THE AIRLINE INDUSTRY. WE ARE WORKING VERY CLOSELY WITH EXPERTS AND INDUSTRY REPRESENTATIVES TO SEE WHAT KIND OF SUPPORTS WE CAN DO TO ENSURE THAT THE SYSTEMS AND THE ECONOMY THAT WE HAD THAT WAS FLOURISHING BEFORE THIS PANDEMIC WILL CONTINUE TO DO WELL FOR ALL CANADIANS FOR THE COMING YEARS. [ Voice of Interpreter ] FIRST OF ALL, WE’RE VERY PLEASED THAT THE AIRLINE INDUSTRY HAS CHOSEN TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE WAGE SUBSIDY BECAUSE THAT WILL ALLOW PEOPLE THAT WORK IN THAT INDUSTRY TO KEEP THEIR JOBS AND GET BACK TO WORK QUICKLY ONCE THE CRISIS HAS ENDED. AT THE SAME TIME, WE RECOGNIZE THAT CERTAIN INDUSTRIES WILL NEED ADDITIONAL SUPPORT. WE ARE NOW WORKING WITH EXPERTS AND WITH INDUSTRY TO SEE EXACTLY HOW WE CAN SUPPORT THEM SO THAT OUR ECONOMY THAT WAS VERY HEALTHY BEFORE THIS CRISIS WILL ALSO RETURN TO ITS FORMER STATE OF HEALTH, PERHAPS WITH THE SAME STRUCTURES OR EVEN BETTER STRUCTURES AS BEFORE. [ No Interpretation ] [ End of Interpretation ].>>Rosemary: PRIME MINISTER OF CANADA OUTSIDE HIS HOME, RIDEAU COTTAGE, GIVING US A BRIEFING TODAY ABOUT THE GOVERNMENT’S RESPONSE TO THE PANDEMIC. ENDING A LITTLE EARLIER THAN USUAL, I SHOULD TELL YOU, BECAUSE THE PRIME MINISTER WILL APPEAR AT THE COVID-19 COMMITTEE, PARLIAMENTARY COMMITTEE. THIS IS THE VIRTUAL COMMITTEE THAT STARTS AT NOON EASTERN, SO WE WILL PROBABLY DIP BACK IN TO HEAR SOME OF THE QUESTIONS AND RESPONSES FROM THE PRIME MINISTER, BUT THE HIGHLIGHT TODAY REALLY FOCUSED ON AGRICULTURAL AID FOR THE AGRICULTURAL SECTOR, $252 MILLION FOR THAT SECTOR. I SHOULD TELL YOU THAT CANADA IS THE FIFTH-LARGEST EXPORTER FOR AGRICULTURAL GOODS IN THE WORLD, SO THIS IS NOT JUST ABOUT HELPING THE DOMESTIC SUPPLY CHAIN BUT, INDEED, THE WORLD SUPPLY CHAIN FOR FOOD. I’LL BRING IN MY COLLEAGUES, VASSY KAPELOS AND DAVID COCHRANE FOR THEIR TAKES. SO IT WAS NOT THE AMOUNT OF MONEY THAT THE AGRICULTURAL SECTOR WAS LOOKING FOR, BUT THE PRIME MINISTER SEEMED TO SUGGEST MORE TO COME, VASSY.>>Vassy: YEAH, CERTAINLY THE ASK MADE OFFICIAL AT THE END OF LAST MONTH WAS FOR $2.6 BILLION. THAT’S FROM THE FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS IN THIS COUNTRY. THIS FELL WELL SHORT OF THAT, $250 MILLION, AND YOU COULD SEE MANY OF THE QUESTIONS DIRECTED TO THE PRIME MINISTER FOCUSED ON THAT. THE SECTOR SO FAR HAD BEEN LOOKING FOR EXTRA HELP AND POINTING TO THE IDEA THAT OTHER SECTORS HAD ALREADY RECEIVED SOME KIND OF AID, AND THEY WERE KIND OF LEFT HANGING, THEY FELT, IN THE MEANTIME. SO THEY HAD BEEN ASKING FOR A NUMBER OF WEEKS, MADE THE OFFICIAL ASK AT THE END OF APRIL FOR $2.6 BILLION, AS I SAID. AS YOU MENTIONED, ROSY, THE PRIME MINISTER DID INDICATE THAT THIS WAS A START BUT DIDN’T PROVIDE ANY DETAILS ABOUT WHAT FUTURE HELP MIGHT LOOK LIKE OR WHEN IT MIGHT ARRIVE. JUST TO PUT SOME CONTEXT AROUND WHY THE HELP IS NEEDED, IT HAS ANOTHER BIG STORY ABOUT HEADLINES, AND THAT’S THE CARGILL MEAT PLANT. BECAUSE OF THE DISRUPTIONS AROUND FOOD SUPPLY THAT INVOLVE A WHOLE HOST OF THINGS, EVERYTHING FROM WHAT’S HAPPENING IN MEAT PROCESSING PLANTS TO WHAT’S HAPPENING AT THE BORDER, IT’S BECOME REALLY DIFFICULT FOR FARMERS TO PLAN AROUND HOW MUCH, AS YOU SAID, THEY NEED TO PLANT OR CULLING CATTLE, THAT KIND OF THING. SO THERE ARE A NUMBER OF SORT OF EXTRANEOUS FACTORS THAT MAKE IT DIFFICULT FOR THEM TO FIGURE OUT HOW THEY GO FORWARD, AND NOT JUST THIS YEAR BUT BEYOND THIS YEAR, AND OF COURSE THAT KIND OF INDUSTRY IS IMPORTANT NOT — THAT KIND OF PLANNING IS IMPORTANT TO ALL OF US. THEY WERE LOOKING FOR EXTRA LIQUIDITY. THEY GOT SOME OF IT. THEY WERE LOOKING FOR EXTRA AID. THEY GOT SOME OF IT AS WELL, BUT CERTAINLY NOT ANYWHERE NEAR WHAT THEY WERE HOPING FOR. JUST TO TOUCH ON ANOTHER ISSUE THE PRIME MINISTER GOT A NUMBER OF QUESTIONS ON, THAT IS WHAT’S HAPPENING AT THE CARGILL MEAT PLANT AND ALSO AT ANOTHER PLANT IN BROOKS, ALBERTA. THE CARGILL ONE IS ABOUT HALF AN HOUR SOUTH OUTSIDE OF CALGARY, RATHER, HALF THE WORKERS AT CARGILL HAVE CONTRACTED COVID-19. SOMEONE HAS DIED THERE. THE PLANT REOPENED YESTERDAY, ALTHOUGH MY UNDERSTANDING FROM THE UNION IS FAR LESS PEOPLE REPORTING TO WORK THAN WOULD NORMALLY BE. THERE ARE A NUMBER OF CONCERNS AROUND THE WAY IN WHICH THAT OUTBREAK WAS HANDLED BY THE COMPANY, BY THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT, AND THE ASK OF THE UNION IS FOR SOME SORT OF INTERVENTION FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. SO FAR, AS YOU HEARD FROM THE PRIME MINISTER’S ANSWERS, HE HAS MADE A SORT OF DISTINGUISHMENT AROUND JURISDICTION, AND HE DID SO YESTERDAY AS WELL THAT THE CFIA, THE CANADIAN FOOD INSPECTION AGENCY IS FOCUSED ON THE SAFETY OF THE FOOD, BUT THE SAFETY OF THE WORKERS OF THE SITE IS SUPPOSED TO BE PROVINCIAL JURISDICTION. THERE ARE A LOT OF QUESTIONS FOR THE PROVINCE ABOUT HOW THEY HANDLED THAT OUTBREAK. DR. DEANNA HINSHAW, THE CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, FOR INSTANCE YESTERDAY SAID THEY FOCUSED TOO EARLY ON JUST THE SITE AND NOT ON COMMUNITY TRANSMISSION, BUT THE PROBLEM IS STILL VERY MUCH THERE. THE PLANT HAS REOPENED. WORKERS STILL — OUR COLLEAGUE CAROLYN DUNN INTERVIEWED WORKERS GOING IN. THEY HAVE VALID CONCERNS ABOUT THEIR OWN SAFETY RE-ENTERING THAT WORKFORCE, AND IT’S UNCLEAR TO ME EXACTLY WHAT ROLE THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS PREPARED TO TAKE REGARDLESS AT THIS POINT OF JURISDICTIONAL ISSUES.>>Rosemary: QUITE RIGHT, AND I SHOULD POINT OUT THAT THE MEAT, THE PROCESSING PLANT, MEAT PLANTS, THIS IS A PROBLEM ALSO IN THE UNITED STATES. THIS IS WHERE SOME OF THEIR MOST CONCENTRATED OUTBREAKS ARE IN THE U.S. AS WELL, SO OBVIOUSLY THIS IS A PROBLEM THAT WE ARE SEEING IN THESE KINDS OF QUARTERS WHERE YOU HAVE TO WORK VERY TIGHTLY TOGETHER. I’LL ALSO SAY THIS ABOUT THE UNITED STATES. THEY GAVE 19 — OFFERED FUNDING TO THEIR FARMERS, CLOSE TO $19 BILLION, JUST TO GIVE YOU A SENSE OF PROPORTION. OBVIOUSLY WE’RE A MUCH SMALLER COUNTRY, BUT I WILL ALSO REMIND PEOPLE THAT THE PRIME MINISTER PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED ADDITIONAL FUNDING UNDER THE FARM CREDIT CANADA PROGRAM, WHICH ALREADY EXISTS, $5 BILLION. BUT IT SOUNDED TO ME LIKE THAT ACTUALLY STILL HAS TO BE LEGISLATED, IN HIS RESPONSE. SO I DON’T KNOW THAT THAT MONEY IS ACTUALLY FLOWING TO PEOPLE YET. DAVID, YOUR THOUGHTS?>>David: THEY ARE TRYING TO DO THREE BASIC THINGS HERE WITH THESE PROGRAMS. ONE IS MONEY TO HELP FOOD PROCESSORS AND PRODUCERS TO ADAPT TO THE NEW PROTOCOLS TO GET THE PPE OR TO ADAPT THE WORKPLACE TO ALLOW FOR GREATER SOCIAL DISTANCING, OR IN THE CASE OF SOME OF THE PEOPLE THAT WORK IN PLACES LIKE CARGILL THAT MAY LIVE TOGETHER IN COMMUNAL LIVING TO ADAPT THE LIVING ARRANGEMENTS THERE. THAT WOULD BE THE FIRST OBJECTIVE. THE SECOND IS ON THE MANAGING OF LIVESTOCK. CARGILL, FOR EXAMPLE, WORKING TO REDUCE CAPACITY. THE OUTBREAK IN ITS WORKFORCE IS THE SIZE OF THE OUTBREAK IN NOVA SCOTIA, FOR EXAMPLE. THIS HAS SIGNIFICANT IMPACTS FOR CATTLE PRODUCERS AND BEEF PRODUCERS ON THE BREEDING AND FEEDING OF THEIR LIVESTOCK, WHICH CREATES STORAGE CAPACITY AND FINANCIAL IMPACTS THERE TO HELP THEM WITH THAT. AND THE THIRD IS STORAGE. THERE’S A SURPLUS OF FRENCH FRIES AND BUTTER AND MILK. THERE’S LIMITED STORAGE CAPACITY FOR THESE THINGS, SO TO HELP THEM WITH THAT AND BUYING UP SOME OF THE SURPLUS AND GIVING IT OUT TO AGENCIES THAT DEAL WITH FOOD INSECURITY. SO IT’S REALLY THE THREE THINGS. HEALTH PROTOCOLS, LIVESTOCK MANAGEMENT AND HELPING WITH STORAGE OR ALLEVIATING SOME OF THE STORAGE IMPACTS THAT THE INDUSTRIES ARE HAVING. BECAUSE ALL OF THIS, ROSY, THE RIPPLE EFFECTS IN AN AGRICULTURAL PLANNING LIFE CYCLE IS THERE’S A BUNCH OF POTATOES RIGHT NOW THAT ARE LARGELY THERE BECAUSE RESTAURANTS AREN’T OPEN AND NOT SELLING FRENCH FRIES, BUT WHEN THEY DO REOPEN, WE NEED TO ENSURE THERE ARE SUPPLIES FOR THEM TO HAVE SOMETHING TO SELL TO THEIR CUSTOMERS. SO IF YOU’RE A FARMER, YOU GOT TO MAKE A DECISION ABOUT PLANTING. YOU NEED TO HAVE A CLEAR SENSE OF WHETHER YOU’RE GOING TO BE SUPPORTED AND HELPED RIGHT NOW AS YOU DO THESE THINGS. THERE’S ALSO LABOUR FORCE ISSUES WITH THIS IN TERMS OF TEMPORARY FOREIGN WORKERS. THE PRIME MINISTER SAYING THAT 90% OF THE TEMPORARY FOREIGN WORKERS THAT THE SECTOR NEEDS HAVE BEEN ABLE TO GET INTO THE COUNTRY AT THIS POINT. THERE’S ANOTHER WAVE OF THAT COMING LATER WITH THE HARVESTING SEASON, LATER IN THE YEAR, IN THE FALL OF THE YEAR, WHERE THEY WILL HAVE TO GO THROUGH ALL OF THIS AGAIN. IT’S ONE THING TO GET IT SEEDED AND PLANTED. YOU GOT TO GET IT HARVESTED AND GET IT OUT. THE EARLY RESPONSE IS TO HELP PEOPLE BUY FOOD. NOW IT’S TO HELP PEOPLE WHO SUPPLY THE FOOD. THIS IS BASICALLY A 10% DOWN PAYMENT ON WHAT THE SECTOR SAYS IT NEEDS.>>Rosemary: GREAT, THANK YOU BOTH VERY MUCH. I’LL LEAVE YOU BOTH FOR A MOMENT, IF I CAN. I’LL ALSO JUST POINT OUT THAT PART OF THAT PACKAGE — SORRY, $125 MILLION THAT WAS ANNOUNCED TODAY FOR PEOPLE THAT HAVE LIVESTOCK, PRODUCERS THAT HAVE LIVESTOCK THAT THEY NEED TO KEEP ON THEIR LAND LONGER THAN USUAL BECAUSE THEY CAN’T PROCESS MORE, THE LAST TIME THAT WAS DONE IN A SIGNIFICANT WAY WAS WITH THE OUTBREAK OF THAT. SO THIS IS SORT OF WHAT THEY ARE DEALING WITH AND THE APPROACH THEY ARE TAKING UNDER THE AGRI RECOVERY PROGRAM. BUT LET’S GET SOME REAL-LIFE PERSPECTIVE ON WHAT THIS MEANS TO PEOPLE FROM SOMEONE WHO KNOWS THE STRUGGLES THAT FARMERS ARE FACING RIGHT NOW BECAUSE HE’S ONE OF THEM. GREG MCKENZIE IS OWNER OF MCKENZIE PRODUCE IN STRATFORD, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND. LOOK AT YOU, AND HE JOINS ME NOW. YOU’RE THERE IN YOUR GREENHOUSE, I GUESS, GREG. GOOD TO SEE YOU.>>YES, THANKS VERY HAVING ME ON.>>Rosemary: SO TELL ME, WHAT DO YOU GROW AND HOW HAS YOUR BUSINESS BEEN GOING RIGHT NOW?>>A MAJOR PART OF OUR BUSINESS IS WE GROW CABBAGE FOR THE [INDISCERNIBLE] INDUSTRY, AND AS ALL RESTAURANTS THAT HAVE A SIGNIFICANT SHUTDOWN, WE HAVE SHUTDOWN OF SALES OVERNIGHT. YOU KNOW, BASICALLY DROPPED 60% IN A MATTER OF A COUPLE DAYS, SO WE ARE SITLE A LOT HEAVIER ON INVENTORY THAN WE NORMALLY WOULD, AND TO ADJUST OUR PLANNING SCHEDULES, THAT’S ALL BEEN CHANGED AROUND AS WELL.>>Rosemary: SORRY, IT’S A DIFFICULT CONNECTION. SO HOW MUCH DID YOUR SALES DROP OVERNIGHT? DID YOU SAY 60%?>>60% WE SAW THE DROP IN THE SALES.>>Rosemary: AND SO WHAT DO YOU DO WITH THE PRODUCE THAT YOU HAVE IF YOU CAN’T SELL IT? DO YOU JUST — TELL ME WHAT YOU DO WITH IT.>>WELL, WE’RE FORTUNATE WE’RE ALL IN REFRIGERATED WAREHOUSES. WE ARE ABLE TO HOLD IT, YOU KNOW. IT ALL HAS A SHELF LIFE, SO AT A CERTAIN POINT IF WE DON’T GET IT TO MARKET, OUR WASTE IS GONNA BE SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASED, AND AGAIN, WITH THAT MUCH PRODUCT IN OUR WAREHOUSE, WE ARE DELAYING OUR EARLY PLANTING UNTIL WE FIGURE OUT WHERE WE’RE GOING TO BE AT.>>Rosemary: YEAH, WELL IT SEEMS TO ME THAT THAT’S SORT OF ONE OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES FOR PRODUCERS, LIKE YOURSELF RIGHT NOW, IS HOW YOU PLAN THE FUTURE. DO YOU HAVE ANY SENSE OF WHAT THAT MIGHT LOOK LIKE?>>WELL, FOR US I BELIEVE, AT LEAST OUR CABBAGE MARKET, WE WILL NOT BE DOING AN EARLY PLANTING. THIS WILL BE THE FIRST TIME IN OVER 20 YEARS THAT THE OPERATION HASN’T PUT AN EARLY CROP IN. SO WE DIVERT [INDISCERNIBLE] MULTIPLE DIFFERENT VEGETABLES THAT WE PLANT OURSELVES FOR THE PUBLIC HERE AND FLOWERS AND [INDISCERNIBLE] MOVING FORWARD. IT’S GOING TO BE A DIFFERENT PROGRAM THAN WE’VE DONE IN THE PAST, BUT WE’RE THANKFUL FOR THE GREAT COMMUNITY SUPPORT HERE THAT LIKES TO GET BEHIND US AND COME OUT TO HELP US IN TRYING TIMES. >>Rosemary: WELL, THAT’S GREAT THAT YOU’VE BEEN ABLE TO ADAPT. I KNOW YOU WERE LISTENING TO THE PRIME MINISTER THERE. WAS THERE ANYTHING THAT YOU THINK YOU HEARD THAT MIGHT BE ABLE TO HELP YOU?>>IT’S — AGAIN, IT’S EARLY IN THE ANNOUNCEMENT. TO SEE HOW THESE PROGRAMS WILL BE ROLLED OUT. I KNOW THE NUMBERS WERE QUITE DIFFERENT THAN WHAT THE FEDERATION OF AGRICULTURE WAS LOOKING FOR. AS I SAY, IT’S IN THE EARLY STAGES, BUT IT’S ANNOUNCED. IT WILL TAKE A LITTLE BIT OF TIME TO SEE HOW THINGS ARE GOING TO ROLL OUT.>>Rosemary: HE DID SEEM TO SUGGEST THAT FOR INDUSTRIES THAT MAY HAVE WASTE — I MEAN FOOD THAT ENDS UP AS WASTE, THAT THERE WOULD BE SOME SORT OF PROGRAM WHERE THE GOVERNMENT WOULD BE ABLE TO BUY UP SOME OF THAT FOOD SO IT’S NOT WASTED AND IT GETS SENT TO PLACES THAT NEED IT. AT WHAT POINT WOULD YOU NEED THAT PROGRAM IN TERMS OF HOW LONG YOUR CABBAGE WILL LAST?>>WE’RE EXPECTING WE WILL HAVE PRODUCT INTO SEPTEMBER OR OCTOBER AT THIS RATE, WHICH NORMALLY WE WOULD BE SOLD OUT IN AUGUST. SO ONCE THE SUMMER MONTHS COME AND THE WARMER TEMPERATURES, IT DOES PUT STRESS ON REFRIGERATION, AND [INDISCERNIBLE] COSTS TO KEEP THOSE UNITS GOING. WHEN THE SUMMER MONTHS HIT HERE, THE REALITY IS GOING TO BE HITTING AS WELL.>>Rosemary: HOW MANY PEOPLE DO YOU EMPLOY, GREG?>>RIGHT NOW WE ACTUALLY HAVE JUST OUR MANAGER ON WITH OURSELVES TRYING TO GET THINGS DONE. AND IN OUR [INDISCERNIBLE] WE’RE UP TO AROUND 55 STAFF FOR THE SUMMER MONTHS.>>Rosemary: AND HOW MANY OF THOSE ARE USUALLY TEMPORARY FOREIGN WORKERS? DO YOU HAVE SOME NOW? WILL YOU NEED SOME?>>WELL, LAST YEAR WAS OUR FIRST TIME INVOLVED WITH THE PROGRAM, AND WE HAVE SIX HOPING TO COME BACK AGAIN THIS YEAR. WE DELAYED ONE OF OUR FIRST WORKERS, AND WE HAVE THREE COMING ON THE 21ST OF THIS MONTH.>>Rosemary: HOW ARE YOU HOLDING UP? YOU’RE THE OWNER? I WOULD IMAGINE THIS IS ALL YOUR INCOME FOR YOUR FAMILY. HOW ARE YOU HOLDING UP PERSONALLY?>>YEAH, IT’S DEFINITELY BEEN A DIFFERENT SPRING, YOU KNOW. COMING OFF A COUPLE OF CHALLENGING YEARS, YOU GOT TO BE OPTIMISTIC, BUT YEAH, IT’S GONNA BE A DIFFERENT YEAR FOR SURE RIGHT ACROSS THE INDUSTRY.>>Rosemary: IS IT — HOW WOULD YOU CHARACTERIZE IT? IS IT ONE OF THE HARDEST YEAR YOU’VE HAD AS A PRODUCER?>>WELL, ’18 WASN’T VERY MUCH FUN FOR ANYBODY AS WELL, BUT THESE DIFFERENT TIMES ARE PUTTING IT — STARTING OFF ON KIND OF THE SAME FOOT.>>Rosemary: YEAH. BUT YOU’RE HEALTHY AND OTHERWISE FINE. >>YEAH, NO, EVERYBODY HAS TO BE FAIRLY RESILIENT HERE.>>Rosemary: YOU SURE DO.>>GOT TO LOOK FOR OPPORTUNITY AND FIND A LITTLE BIT OF LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL.>>Rosemary: WELL, GREG, THANK YOU FOR WHAT YOU’RE DOING, AND MAYBE THIS WILL INSPIRE PEOPLE TO GO OUT AND BUY UP ALL YOUR CABBAGE, OR WHATEVER ELSE YOU’RE GROWING TOO. I HOPE WHAT THE PRIME MINISTER ANNOUNCES IS ENOUGH TO SUPPORT YOU AND YOUR COMPANY GOING FORWARD. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR MAKING THE TIME AND PUTTING YOURSELF OUT THERE IN THE GREENHOUSE.>>OKAY. APPRECIATE IT. THANK YOU.>>Rosemary: ALL RIGHT, NICE TO MEET YOU. THAT’S GREG MACKENZIE, THE OWNER OF MACKENZIE PRODUCE. HE JOINS US FROM STRATFORD, P.E.I. OF COURSE HE’S JUST ONE OF THE FARMERS STRUGGLING RIGHT NOW. THERE ARE ALL KINDS OF DIFFERENT PRODUCERS ACROSS THIS COUNTRY. SO IMPORTANT TO OUR FOOD SUPPLY, BUT ALSO THE WORLD’S FOOD SUPPLY. WE’VE HEARD ABOUT POTATO FARMERS. I WAS SURPRISED TODAY TO LEARN ABOUT MUSHROOM FARMERS WHO ARE LOSING ABOUT $400,000 A WEEK BECAUSE THEY CAN’T SELL THEIR MUSHROOMS TO RESTAURANTS. SO ALL OF THIS PART OF WHAT THE GOVERNMENT WAS TRYING TO ADDRESS TODAY WITH $252 MILLION. THE PRIME MINISTER SAYING THAT IS A FIRST STEP, AND IT CERTAINLY SOUNDS AS THOUGH MUCH MORE WILL BE NEEDED AS MANY FARMERS ARE TRYING TO PLAN AHEAD WHAT THE FUTURE MIGHT LOOK LIKE IF THEY CAN’T EVEN SELL WITH WHAT THEY’VE GOT. SO WE’LL TALK A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT THAT STORY AS THE DAY UNFOLDS AND GET MORE REACTION FROM FARMERS ABOUT WHETHER THIS WILL BE ENOUGH FOR THEM. I SHOULD TELL YOU AT NOON THE AGRICULTURE MINISTER WILL BE AT THE REGULAR DAILY BRIEFING, BUT NOON ALSO TODAY ON TUESDAYS IS THE VIRTUAL COMMITTEE, COVID COMMITTEE HEARING WHERE MPs CAN DIAL IN AND ASK QUESTIONS OF MINISTERS AND OF THE PRIME MINISTER, AND INDEED AT NOON THE PRIME MINISTER WILL BE AT THAT COVID COMMITTEE VIRTUALLY AND WILL BE TAKING SOME QUESTIONS, SO WE WILL BRING PART OF THAT TO YOU AS WELL TODAY. WANT TO TALK ABOUT ANOTHER STORY, OF COURSE, THAT WE HAVE BEEN TRACKING THROUGHOUT THIS PANDEMIC, AND THAT IS THE IMPACT ON LONG-TERM CARE CENTRES. WE KNOW THAT THEY HAVE BECOME REALLY THE TRAGIC EPICENTRE OF THIS STORY AND OF THIS OUTBREAK, BOTH IN ONTARIO AND IN QUEBEC, IN PARTICULAR, AND OUR NEXT GUEST HAS FELT THAT VERY PERSONALLY OVER THE LAST 24 HOURS. SHERRY ROMANADO IS AN MP, AND HER AUNT, CAROLE, WAS A RESIDENT IN ONE OF THOSE LONG-TERM CARE CENTRES IN QUEBEC, AND SHE DIED YESTERDAY OF COVID-19, AND THIS MORNING MS. ROMANADO TWEETED THIS: SO THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE TIRED OF PHYSICAL DISTANCING, REMEMBER THIS VIRUS DOESN’T PICK AND CHOOSE AND EVERY SINGLE PERSON THAT IT KILLED HAD MANY WHO LOVED THEM, AND THAT’S HER RIGHT THERE WITH HER AUNT CAROLE, AND SHERRY ROMANADO JOINS ME RIGHT NOW FROM LONGUEUIL. MY CONDOLENCES, FIRST OF ALL, ON THE LOSS OF YOUR AUNT, SHERRY.>>THANK YOU SO MUCH.>>Rosemary: SO TELL ME A LITTLE BIT ABOUT CAROLE AND WHY SHE WAS IN A LONG-TERM CARE CENTRE.>>SO MY AUNT CAROLE ON MY DAD’S SIDE HAS BEEN SUFFERING FROM ALZHEIMER’S FOR A FEW YEARS AND WAS IN ONE OF THE CHSLDS IN LAVAL IN NORTHERN — NORTH OF MONTREAL, AND UNFORTUNATELY CAUGHT COVID-19 AND PASSED AWAY YESTERDAY, SO IT’S REAL AND IT’S HAPPENING.>>Rosemary: HOW OLD WAS CAROLE, SHERRY?>>SHE WOULD HAVE BEEN 75 IN NOVEMBER.>>Rosemary: SO PRETTY YOUNG, REALLY. AND WHAT HAD HAPPENED IN THE [INDISCERNIBLE]? WAS THERE AN OUTBREAK? HAD THERE BEEN MANY CASES? OTHER DEATHS? DO YOU HAVE A SENSE OF WHAT WAS HAPPENING INSIDE THE CENTRE?>>SO OBVIOUSLY I’VE BEEN, YOU KNOW, WORKING FROM HOME, AS HAVE PRETTY MUCH ALL OF MY COLLEAGUES, AND SO I WASN’T ABLE TO VISIT HER OR GET DETAILS ABOUT WHAT WAS GOING ON, BUT AS YOU KNOW, WE DO HAVE A PROBLEM WITH COVID-19 IN A LOT OF THE CHSLDS HERE IN QUEBEC, AS WELL AS IN ONTARIO. SO THERE WILL BE A TIME TO LOOK INTO WHAT HAPPENED, HOW COULD WE HAVE PREVENTED IT, BUT RIGHT NOW WE ARE REALLY FOCUSED ON SAVING AS MANY AS PEOPLE AS WE CAN, PREVENTING THIS FROM SPREAD AS MUCH AS WE CAN, CONTINUING TO PRACTISE, YOU KNOW, PHYSICAL DISTANCING, AND I THINK THAT’S THE HARDEST THING. LIKE ANYBODY WHO HAS LOST A FAMILY MEMBER RECENTLY, THE FACT THAT YOU CAN’T GET TOGETHER, THE FACT THAT YOU CAN’T, YOU KNOW, GRIEVE WITH YOUR LOVED ONES, IT MAKES IT THAT MUCH MORE DIFFICULT, SO I’VE JUST BEEN KEEPING IN TOUCH WITH MY DAD WHO’S LOST QUITE A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS IN THE LAST 18 MONTHS, SO WE JUST — YOU KNOW, TRYING TO STAY POSITIVE AND STAY ON THE PHONE AND SO ON AND SO FORTH, LIKE EVERY OTHER CANADIAN, RIGHT? WE’RE IN THIS TOGETHER, AND I THINK THE REASON I WANTED TO TWEET THAT OUT WAS I KNOW THAT WITH THE NICE WEATHER PEOPLE ARE STARTING TO FEEL A LITTLE, YOU KNOW, ITCHY TO GET OUTSIDE, BUT WE REALLY NEED TO CONTINUE. WE NEED TO HOLD THE LINE. WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE ARE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO PREVENT THIS SPREAD. I MYSELF, MY OLDEST SON IS ACTUALLY DEPLOYED TO THE CHSLDS IN MONTREAL. HE’S A MAYBE OF THE CANADIAN ARMED FORCES. IT’S ALL HANDS ON DECK. WE’RE DOING WHAT WE CAN TO MAKE SURE FOLKS STAY SAFE, AND THAT’S SORT OF MY BATTLE CRY FOR EVERYONE, IS TO STAY SAFE, STAY THE COURSE. WE CAN DO THIS. I KNOW IT’S NOT EASY. TRUST ME, I’M DOING THE SAME THING AS EVERYBODY, BUT STAY THE COURSE.>>Rosemary: I FORGOT YOUR FAMILY HAD THAT MILITARY CONNECTION. SO WHAT IS YOUR SON DOING IN THOSE LONG-TERM CARE CENTRES? HAS HE TOLD YOU OF THE KINDS OF THINGS HE’S BEEN TASKED WITH DOING TO TRY AND HELP OUT?>>SO MY OLDEST SON IS ACTUALLY AT LONG POINT IN MONTREAL HELPING WITH THE COORDINATION OF THE EFFORTS ON THE GROUND HERE IN MONTREAL, AND SO YOU KNOW, LIKE I SAID, IT’S A FAMILY EFFORT.>>Rosemary: YEAH. YOU HAVE LIVED THIS, BUT BEFORE — WE’RE ALL SORT OF WATCHING THIS UNFOLD IN LONG-TERM CARE CENTRES WITH I THINK EVERYONE, A COLLECTIVE HORROR THAT THIS IS HOW WE HAVE LEFT OUR OLDEST CANADIANS. WERE YOU SURPRISED THAT THIS HAS COME TO THIS, THAT WE HAVE GOTTEN IN THIS POINT IN THIS? AND HOW DOES THAT MAKE YOU FEEL?>>Interview: WELL, I DON’T THINK ANYONE ANTICIPATED A PANDEMIC AS THIS ONE, AND SO YOU KNOW, THERE IS A REAL DIFFICULTY IN TERMS OF RECRUITING FOLKS TO WANT TO WORK IN CERTAIN FIELDS HERE IN QUEBEC. AS YOU KNOW, BEFORE THE PANDEMIC HIT, WE WERE IN A DIFFICULT SITUATION WITH RESPECT TO RECRUITING AND A LACK OF MANPOWER IN CERTAIN SECTORS, SO I THINK IT WAS JUST PART OF A — ALMOST A PERFECT STORM. SO YOU KNOW, AGAIN, ONCE WE GET THROUGH THIS CRISIS, YOU KNOW, THERE WILL BE AN OPPORTUNITY TO REVIEW, REFLECT, LOOK AT WHERE WE NEED TO BE IMPROVING AND MAKE THOSE CHANGES SO THAT WE CAN MAKE SURE THIS NEVER HAPPENS AGAIN. >>Rosemary: CAN YOU TELL ME WHAT KIND OF GAL AUNT CAROLE WAS?>>OH, YOU WOULD HAVE LIKED HER, ROSY. SHE WAS A HOOT. SHE COULD — YOU KNOW, SHE WAS PRETTY SHORT. SHE WAS I THINK UNDER 5 FEET, BUT YOU KNOW, SHE POPPED A WALLOP WHEN IT CAME TO CRACKING JOKES WITH THE FAMILY. SHE’S GOING TO BE MISSED BY HER CHILDREN, KATHLEEN AND HOWIE. I’VE BEEN IN TOUCH WITH THEM, AND HER HUSBAND IAN, AND YOU KNOW, WE ALL MISS HER AND HOPEFULLY ONE OF THESE DAYS WE’LL BE ABLE TO GET ALL TOGETHER AND LAUGH ABOUT CAROLE AND, YOU KNOW, BRING BACK SOME OF THOSE GREAT MEMORIES.>>Rosemary: WELL, MY CONDOLENCES SO YOUR WHOLE FAMILY, SHERRY. I DO APPRECIATE YOU TALKING ABOUT IT BECAUSE IT IS SO IMPORTANT TO PUT SOME FACES TO THESE STATISTICS AND TALK ABOUT HOW PEOPLE ARE MANAGING, AND I APPRECIATE YOU DOING IT AS AN MP AND AS A PERSON. THANKS SO MUCH.>>THANK YOU SO MUCH, ROSY.>>Rosemary: OKAY, TAKE CARE. THAT’S SHERRY ROMANADO, AN MP FROM LONGUEUIL, QUEBEC THERE IN HER HOME TALKING ABOUT THE LOSS OF HER AUNT CAROLE IN A LONG-TERM CARE CENTRE IN QUEBEC. OF COURSE THE STORY FOR SO MANY OF YOU, MANY CANADIANS ACROSS THE COUNTRY, STRUGGLING WITH THOSE OUTBREAKS IN THOSE PLACES WHERE PEOPLE ARE LIVING IN VERY TIGHT CONDITIONS, AND ONCE THE PANDEMIC ENTERS, IT BECOMES VERY DIFFICULT TO CONTROL, BUT WANTED TO HIGHLIGHT THAT BECAUSE SHERRY DID TWEET IT THIS MORNING. AS SHE SAID, PART OF HER BATTLE CALL FOR CANADIANS TO DIG IN AND KEEP PUSHING AS WE TRY TO FIGHT THIS THING. ALL RIGHT, WE ARE WAITING FOR THE PRIME MINISTER AND OTHERS TO TALK AT THE COVID COMMITTEE, WHICH WILL START BACK AT NOON EASTERN. AND OF COURSE THERE WILL BE THE REGULAR FEDERAL BRIEFING TOO, WHICH WE WILL JUST SORT OF MONITOR TODAY IN ORDER TO BRING YOU SOME OF THE POLITICAL BACK AND FORTH WHICH IS CRITICAL TO TRYING TO UNDERSTAND SOME OF THE QUESTIONS AROUND ACCOUNTABILITY AND WHAT THE GOVERNMENT IS THINKING IN TERMS OF PUBLIC POLICY AS WELL. SO I’LL BRING BACK MY COLLEAGUES VASSY KAPELOS AND DAVID COCHRANE FOR MORE ON THAT. I DO APPRECIATE WHEN POLITICIANS SORT OF PUT ASIDE THEIR POLITICAL JOBS TO TALK ABOUT HOW THIS IS AFFECTING THEM PERSONALLY BECAUSE IT HAS AFFECTED EVERYONE PERSONALLY IN DIFFERENT WAYS, OF COURSE, AND SO APPRECIATED SHERRY COMING ON TO SHARE THAT WITH US. LET’S JUST GO THROUGH MAYBE SOME OF THE THINGS THAT WE MIGHT EXPECT THE PRIME MINISTER TO BE ASKED ABOUT TODAY. I WOULD IMAGINE CERB WOULD BE TOP OF MIND, GIVEN WHAT WE HEARD FROM ANDREW SCHEER YESTERDAY, VASSY.>>Vassy: YEAH, DEFINITELY CERB, AND ACTUALLY JUST QUICKLY JUMPING OFF THE INTERVIEW YOU JUST DID, I THINK ONE QUESTION FOR THE PRIME MINISTER IN THE NEXT 24 OR SO HOURS WILL ACTUALLY REVOLVE AROUND A PROMISE HE MADE A FEW WEEKS AGO TO TOP UP THE PAY FOR PEOPLE WHO WORK IN HOMES LIKE THE ONE AUNT CAROLE WAS IN, OR THAT SO MANY OTHERS. AND JUST TO QUANTIFY THE ISSUE RIGHT NOW, THAT IT’S NOT ISOLATED TO ONE PART OF THE COUNTRY NECESSARILY, IT’S ESPECIALLY ACUTE IN ONTARIO AND QUEBEC. IN QUEBEC, 85% OF THE DEATHS SO FAR, AS OF LAST WEEK, THAT ARE DUE TO COVID-19 HAVE OCCURRED IN A LONG-TERM CARE OR CONTINUING CARE FACILITY. ACROSS THE COUNTRY, IT’S 79%. SO EIGHT OUT OF EVERY TEN CANADIANS BASICALLY WHO ARE DYING BECAUSE OF COVID-19 CONTRACTED THAT VIRUS IN ONE OF THESE HOMES. SO WHEN YOU CALL IT A EPICENTRE, THE SORT OF HORRIFIC EPICENTRE OF THIS VIRUS IN THIS COUNTRY, YOU ARE 100% RIGHT, AND THERE ARE IMPLICATIONS FOR THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, MOST CERTAINLY GOING FORWARD. DIFFERENT UNIONS, FOR EXAMPLE, REPRESENTING THE WORKERS IN THESE HOMES HAVE ASKED FOR A COMPLETE REMODELING OF THE FUNDING STRUCTURE, OF EVEN THE LEGISLATION THAT GOVERNS THESE TYPES OF CARE HOMES THAT IT MIGHT FALL UNDER FEDERAL JURISDICTION RATHER THAN PROVINCIAL JURISDICTION. YOU DO SEE A REAL PATCHWORK EFFECT OF POLICIES RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY. ON THE SPECIFIC PROMISE THE PRIME MINISTER MADE OR THE PLEDGE THAT HE MADE TO OFFER A TOP-UP FOR ESSENTIAL HEALTH CARE WORKERS IN EACH PROVINCE, SOME PROVINCES HAVE ALREADY GONE AHEAD AND DONE IT, IT WOULD — PEOPLE WHO WOULD QUALIFY HAVE TO MAKE LESS THAN $2500 A MONTH, AND I WOULD HIGHLIGHT THAT THERE IS SOME FRICTION AMONG THE PREMIERS AND THE PRIME MINISTER ON THIS ISSUE, ONLY BECAUSE, FOR EXAMPLE, IN NOVA SCOTIA PREMIER STEVEN MacNEIL THERE IS SAYING, WELL, MOST OF THE PEOPLE WHO WORK IN THE SECTOR IN THOSE JOBS ALREADY MAKE THE AMOUNT OF MONEY THAT WOULD TAKE THEM OUT OF QUALIFYING FOR A TOP-UP, SO WE’RE ASKING THE PRIME MINISTER AND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO BE MORE FLEXIBLE. WHEN I LAST ASKED HIM WHETHER THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HAD SIGNALLED THEY WOULD BE FLEXIBLE ON SUNDAY, HE SAID THOSE CONVERSATIONS ARE ONGOING, BUT IT DIDN’T SEEM LIKE A COMMITMENT HAD BEEN MADE. IT HAD BEEN A NUMBER OF WEEKS SINCE THAT PROMISE WAS MADE. OBVIOUSLY TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE BECAUSE THEY ARE GOING TO WANT TO GET THAT TOP-UP OUT TO HELP PEOPLE WHO ARE, YOU KNOW, REALLY ENTERING INTO PRETTY HIGH-RISK ENVIRONMENTS RIGHT NOW TO TREAT AND HELP AND CARE FOR THE PEOPLE WHO ARE SUFFERING FROM THIS VIRUS AND WHO MIGHT CONTRACT IT IN THESE HOMES. SO I’M REALLY INTERESTED TO HEAR FROM THE PRIME MINISTER, FROM OTHER FEDERAL OFFICIALS WHERE THOSE CONVERSATIONS ARE AT AND IF THERE IS GOING TO BE ANY SORT OF AGREEMENT, WIDESPREAD AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND PROVINCES ON THAT TOP-UP AND WHAT KIND OF FLEXIBILITY MIGHT BE BUILT INTO THE PROGRAM, IF ANY AT ALL. ON THE ISSUE THAT YOU BROUGHT UP, THE CERB, WE DID HEAR FROM OTHER PROVINCIAL PREMIERS, SUCH AS IN MANITOBA, AND TO A LESSER DEGREE IN NEW BRUNSWICK, AND THEN ANDREW SCHEER WHO FLAGGED THE ISSUE THAT THEY SAY THEY ARE HEARING ABOUT, THAT THERE MIGHT BE A DISINCENTIVE FOR PEOPLE TO GO BACK TO WORK BECAUSE OF THE WAY THE CERB WORKS. SO THE FACT THAT PEOPLE CAN ACCESS IF THEY LOST THEIR JOB, FOR EXAMPLE, DUE TO COVID-19, $2,000 A MONTH FOR UP TO FOUR MONTHS. THERE IS A BIT OF — I GUESS A SORT OF POLITICAL CONVERSATION AROUND THIS AT ALL. THE IDEA PUT FORTH THAT PEOPLE WOULD RATHER STAY HOME THAN — AND ACCEPT THE CERB THAN GO BACK TO WORK. THERE ARE SOME BUSINESSES THAT I’VE HEARD FROM WHO ARE CONCERNED ABOUT THEIR ABILITY TO REHIRE. BUT THERE IS NO INSINUATION, FOR EXAMPLE, FROM THOSE BUSINESSES THAT PEOPLE ARE JUST BEING LAZY AND THEY WANT TO STAY HOME. THERE ARE GENUINE CONCERNS FROM PEOPLE ABOUT THEIR SAFETY GOING BACK TO WORK, AND THERE IS A GENUINE CONVERSATION I THINK TO BE HAD ABOUT WHAT THE PROGRAM LOOKS LIKE, WHAT FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FROM THE GOVERNMENT LOOKS LIKE MOVING FORWARD IN THIS STAGE OF REOPENING VERSUS WHEN EVERYTHING WAS COMPLETELY SHUT DOWN. THE PRIME MINISTER SAID THOSE TALKS COULD BE HAD, BUT HE PROVIDED NO DETAILS ON WHAT THE GOVERNMENT IS LOOKING AT GOING FORWARD.>>Rosemary: THEY ARE LOOKING AT IT. DAVID, I KNOW YOU HAVE HAD SOME CONVERSATIONS AROUND THAT AS WELL.>>David: YEAH. THERE’S AN ONGOING REVIEW OF EXISTING PROGRAMS THAT IS HAPPENING OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL WEEKS AND THE NEXT MONTH OR SO TO GET A SENSE OF WHETHER ARE THESE THINGS GOING TO NEED TO BE EXTENDED? THE CERB RUNS FOR 16 WEEKS. WE’RE BASICALLY HALFWAY THROUGH THE FUNDING SUPPORT, BUT WE MAY NOT BE HALFWAY THROUGH THE PANDEMIC. HOPEFULLY WE ARE, BUT YOU KNOW, I DON’T KNOW IF THAT’S NECESSARILY WHERE WE ARE, SO DO YOU — WHAT DO YOU DO WITH THE PROGRAM? WHAT DO YOU DO WITH THE WAGE SUBSIDY WHICH IS ONLY NOW STARTING TO PAY OUT. BUT YOU KNOW, IT’S MORE COMPLICATED THAN SIMPLY SAYING, OH, WELL, THESE PROGRAMS SHOULD HAVE AN INCENTIVE FOR PEOPLE TO FIND WORK. I MEAN, IN THEORY THAT IS A GREAT IDEA. BUT OKAY, SOMEONE WHO’S HOME WITH THEIR KIDS SUDDENLY CAN GO BACK TO — HAS TO GO BACK TO WORK, WHAT DO THEY DO WITH THE KIDS? SCHOOLS AND CHILD CARE CENTRES ARE CLOSED. SO THERE IS A MUCH BROADER RIPPLE EFFECT OF ANY TWEAK TO ANY ONE PROGRAM AS WE’RE SEEING WITH THESE PROGRAMS FROM THE MOMENT THEY HAVE BEEN LAUNCHED THAT THEY HAVE — THERE HAVE BEEN FITS AND STARTS AND TWEAKS AND MERGERS AND REVAMPS AND BROADENING OF CRITERIA TO HELP PEOPLE BECAUSE EACH DECISION TRIGGERS FOUR OR FIVE UNFORESEEN RIPPLE EFFECTS THAT YOU THEN NEED TO MAKE OTHER DECISIONS TO DEAL WITH. AND SO THIS IS ONE OF THE CHALLENGES WITH THINGS LIKE THE CERB, AND I KNOW THERE WAS A BIG NATIONAL DISCUSSION ABOUT THE STUDENT SUBSIDY PACKAGE, SAYING THAT THERE SHOULD BE REQUIREMENT FOR STUDENTS TO GO LOOK FOR WORK. OKAY, THAT’S GREAT, BUT STUDENTS RUN INTO THE SAME SORT OF SITUATION. EITHER THEY MIGHT HAVE A PARENT THEY NEED TO LOOK AFTER. THEY COULD HAVE A CHILD. THEY MAY HAVE SOMEONE IN THEIR FAMILY THAT IS IMMUNE COMPROMISED. SO YOU RUN INTO A WHOLE SERIES OF COMPLICATED FACTORS WHEN YOU TRY TO APPLY SIMPLISTIC FIXES TO THINGS, AND THIS IS THE REAL DELICATE DANCE OF POLICY DEVELOPMENT IN THE MIDDLE OF A PANDEMIC, THE LIKES OF WHICH NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN, BECAUSE IT LEADS TO ALL KINDS OF UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES AND UNKNOWN UNKNOWABLE THINGS THAT YOU THEN HAVE TO RESPOND TO IN RL TIME WITH GREAT PUBLIC NEED PRESSING AT YOU TO MAKE A DECISION QUICKLY. ONE OF THESE THE PRIME MINISTER WAS ASKED ABOUT TODAY IS AIRLINES, FOR EXAMPLE. THE DISRUPTION TO THE AIRLINE SECTOR HAS BEEN ABSOLUTELY CATASTROPHIC RIGHT NOW. THEY ARE WORKING ON SOME SORT OF A SECTORAL PACKAGE TO HELP THEM. WHAT I AM HEARING IS YOU’RE NOT LOOKING AT A BIG BAILOUT LIKE WE SAW WITH THE AUTO SECTOR, BUYING SHARES AND TAKING OVER GOVERNANCE AND THINGS. RIGHT NOW THEY DON’T THINK THEY ARE AT THAT CRITICAL EVERYBODY IS GOING TO GO UNDER PHASE THAT WE SAW IN 2008-2009 WHICH WAS REALLY A FINANCIAL SECTOR CRUNCH AND THEN RIPPLED THROUGH A BUNCH OF OTHER SECTORS. IT’S MORE ABOUT LONG-TERM BRIDGING, KEEPING MAJOR EMPLOYERS ALIVE TO BETTER TIMES. THE CHALLENGE IS WHEN ARE THOSE BETTER TIMES? AND COULD THEY VERY WELL END UP IN A SITUATION LIKE GENERAL MOTORS AND THE AUTO SECTOR WAS 10, 12 YEARS AGO? SO THERE IS A MASSIVE AMOUNT OF POLICY DEVELOPMENT HAPPENING BEHIND THE SCENES, FAR BEYOND WHAT WE SEE FROM THE PRIME MINISTER EVERY DAY IN THESE DAILY ANNOUNCEMENTS, AND YOU KNOW, AS WE SAW RIGHT HERE, A QUARTER OF A BILLION DOLLARS IN AID FOR THE AGRICULTURE SECTOR. THAT’S JUST THE BEGINNING, AND I’M OLD ENOUGH TO REMEMBER WHEN A QUARTER OF A BILLION DOLLARS IN GOVERNMENT AID WAS A REALLY BIG DEAL. NOW IT’S TUESDAY.>>Rosemary: NOW WE’RE LIKE, MEH. I WILL SAY, ON CERB, I THINK YOU’RE BOTH QUITE RIGHT, IT IS IMPORTANT TO HAVE A CONVERSATION ABOUT HOW THIS WINDS DOWN, WHAT THAT LOOKS LIKE, AND INDEED HOW DO PEOPLE WHO MIGHT START GOING BACK TO WORK IN SOME CAPACITY BUT NEED SOME ONGOING SUPPORT FROM THE GOVERNMENT DO THAT, BUT I HAVE YET TO HEAR ANY ACTUAL EVIDENCE FROM ANDREW SCHEER OR ANYBODY ELSE THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO ARE SAYING “I DON’T WANT TO WORK, I’M GOING TO STAY HOME AND TAKE THIS BENEFIT.” I MEAN, VASSY, YOU HAVE HEARD FROM BUSINESSES WHO ARE CONCERNED, THAT’S FINE. BUT I HAVE YET TO HEAR ANY EVIDENCE THAT THIS IS SOMETHING THAT IS RAMPANT OR STARTING OR THAT PEOPLE ARE CONSIDERING. WE CERTAINLY HAVE SEEN THROUGH CATHERINE CULLEN’S REPORTING SOME EVIDENCE OF FRAUD, WHICH IS PERHAPS NOT SURPRISING THROUGH CERB, THAT SOME PEOPLE APPLIED FOR IT, GOT IT AND SHOULD NOT HAVE. AND I KNOW SHE’S STILL WORKING ON SOME STORIES AROUND THAT, BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY THAT CAN’T CONTINUE. I’M NOT SURE HOW WIDESPREAD THAT IS EITHER, AND I’M NOT SURE THE GOVERNMENT WOULD BE ABLE TO GIVE US A SENSE OF THAT ANY MORE EITHER. AND OF COURSE THE OTHER PART OF CERB IS THAT AS THE WAGE SUBSIDY PROGRAM RAMPS UP, AS WE SEE NOW IT’S COVERING 1.7 MILLION WORKERS, CERB WILL SLIGHTLY WIND DOWN AS LONG AS THESE COMPANIES FEEL THAT THEY CAN BRING THEIR WORKERS BACK ON THE PAYROLL. SO I MEAN, I GUESS I’M JUST SAYING IT’S AN INTERESTING POLITICAL CONVERSATION, BUT I’M NOT SURE WHAT IT’S — YOU KNOW, WHERE IS THE NEXUS OF IT. WHERE IS THE EVIDENCE THAT THIS IS A WIDESPREAD PROBLEM AT THIS STAGE, GIVEN THAT THERE AREN’T REALLY ANY JOBS TO BE HAD. SO I’M NOT EVEN SURE HOW YOU COULD TURN DOWN A JOB IN ANY REAL WAY. VASSY, I’LL JUST GET YOUR THOUGHTS.>>Vassy: YEAH, JUST QUICKLY, I’M TRYING TO THINK OF IT FROM AND LESS FROM THE POLITICAL PERSPECTIVE, MORE FROM THE PREMIERS WHO I HAVE HEARD FROM AND PRIMARILY IN MANITOBA AND NEW BRUNSWICK, AND AGAIN, YOU’RE RIGHT, IT’S NOT LIKE THEY PRESENTED ME WITH TEN EXAMPLES SO FAR, BUT THEY DO INSIST THEY ARE HEARING ABOUT THE CONCERN FROM VARIOUS ORGANIZATIONS THAT REPRESENT BUSINESSES. AND IN THEIR CASE, THEIR ECONOMIES ARE AT THE STAGE WHERE THERE MIGHT BE THE NEED FOR SOME JOBS, MORE SO THAN, FOR EXAMPLE, HERE IN ONTARIO OR PERHAPS IN OTHER PROVINCES THAT ARE NOT — LIKE, THOSE ARE THE TWO PROVINCES MOST ADVANCED OR AMONG THE TWO PROVINCES MOST ADVANCED WHEN IT COMES TO REOPENING THE ECONOMY, AND ONE OTHER THING I WANT TO TOUCH ON WITH THE FINANCIAL AID PACKAGE, SOMETHING THAT I AM GETTING INUNDATED WITH EMAILS ABOUT, AND THAT IS THE RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM. THAT IS SOMETHING THAT THE GOVERNMENT SAYS IS SUPPOSED TO BE UP AND RUNNING FOR APPLICATIONS IN MID-MAY.>>Rosemary: THE COMMERCIAL RENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.>>Vassy: COMMERCIAL RENT, I’M SORRY, YEAH. THEY ARE GOING TO LEND SOME MONEY TO COMMERCIAL PROPERTY OWNERS IN EXCHANGE FOR THEM PRETTY DRASTICALLY CUTTING THE AMOUNT OF RENT THAT A SMALL BUSINESS CAN PAY. THERE ARE SOME ISSUES I’M HEARING TONS ABOUT THE RELIANCE ON OR THE PRINCE EDWARD ISLANDCATION OF THE PROGRAM ON LANDLORDS COMPLYING. THEY ESSENTIALLY HAVE TO AGREE TO TAKE A BIG CUT IN THE RENT, AND THERE ALSO ARE SOME CONCERNS ABOUT THE REVENUE DECREASE THAT THOSE SMALL BUSINESSES HAVE TO SHOW. THEY HAVE TO SHOW A 70% DECLINE. A LOT OF RESTAURANTS REACHING OUT TO ME SAYING WE WERE TOLD WE COULD DO TAKEOUT. THE BUSINESS IS NOT ENOUGH FOR US TO PAY OUR RENT AND FIXED COSTS, BUT WE ARE JUST GETTING BY, AND WE STILL NEED THE HELP TOO. A REAL LACK OF INFORMATION FOR A NUMBER OF THOSE PEOPLE I’M HEARING FROM RIGHT NOW, FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. I KNOW THE PROGRAM IS BEING WORKED OUT, BUT MAY 1 HAS COME AND GONE. MANY LANDLORDS ALSO REACHING OUT SAYING MY TENANTS ARE SAYING CAN WE GIVE YOU A QUARTER OF THE RENT BECAUSE ARE YOU GOING TO DO THIS PROGRAM, AND THEY CAN’T SAY YES OR NO. SO I JUST WANT TO HIGHLIGHT THAT ISSUE, BECAUSE IT’S PART OF THE FINANCIAL AID PACKAGE FROM THE GOVERNMENT, AND PROBABLY THE ONE PART WE HAVE THE FEWEST DETAILS ON RIGHT NOW.>>Rosemary: OKAY, I GOT TO LEAVE YOU BOTH, IF YOU DON’T MIND HERE, FOR OUR ONGOING SPECIAL COVERAGE ON CBC TELEVISION. WE WILL BE BACK AFTER A SHORT BREAK. THANK YOU VERY MUCH, VASSY KAPELOS AND CBC’S DAVID COCHRANE. I WILL REMIND VIEWERS IF YOU ARE TUNING IN NOW, THE PRIME MINISTER’S FOCUS WAS ON AID FOR THE AGRICULTURE SECTOR IN THIS COUNTRY, $252 MILLION TO TRY AND TIDE THEM OVER, BUT THE PRIME MINISTER ALSO ACKNOWLEDGING THAT MORE AID, MORE MONEY MAY BE NEEDED, AND OF COURSE WE WILL HAVE ONGOING COVERAGE OF THE PANDEMIC ON “CBC NEWS NETWORK” AND CBC.CA, STREAMING WHEREVER YOU ARE. BUT THAT ENDS OUR COVERAGE HERE ON CBC TELEVISION TODAY. I’M ROSEMARY BARTON. THANKS FOR WATCHING. SEE YOU SOON. ♪ ♪>>Rosemary: HELLO AGAIN. I’M ROSEMARY BARTON HERE IN OTTAWA. THANKS FOR JOINING US ON “CBC NEWS NETWORK” AND STREAMING ON THE CBC NEWS APP AND CBC.CA RIGHT AROUND THE WORLD. WE ARE TRACKING THE BIG COVID-19 DEVELOPMENTS OF THE DAY. AN EMERGENCY AID PACKAGE IS ON THE WAY FOR CANADA’S AGRICULTURE AND FOOD INDUSTRY. THE PRIME MINISTER ANNOUNCED $252 MILLION IN SUPPORT TO HELP FARMERS AND FOOD PROCESSORS COPE WITH THIS UNPRECEDENTED CRISIS BROUGHT ON BY THE PANDEMIC, BUT IS IT ENOUGH? WE WILL DISCUSS WITH OUR REPORTERS IN JUST A MOMENT, AND WE DO EXPECT ALSO TO HEAR MORE ON THE RELIEF PLAN FROM FEDERAL MINISTERS THIS HOUR, INCLUDING THE AGRICULTURE MINISTER, ON HOW THIS MIGHT UNFOLD. AND THAT, ON YOUR RIGHT, IS THE BEGINNING OF THE VIRTUAL COVID COMMITTEE THAT MEETS NOW TUESDAYS AND THURSDAYS AT NOON EASTERN. THIS IS THE ENLARGED SPECIAL COMMITTEE THAT HAS BEEN CRAFTED AND CONSTITUTED TO DEAL WITH THE GOVERNMENT’S RESPONSE TO COVID-19, ALLOWING MPs AND PARLIAMENTARIANS TO DO A DEEP DIVE INTO SOME OF WHAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS DONE, ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT IT, AND HOLD THE GOVERNMENT TO ACCOUNT ON SOME OF THE POLICY DECISIONS THEY ARE MAKING. ON THE RIGHT OF YOUR SCREEN THERE IS THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE, ANTHONY RODA, WHO IS SITTING SOMEWHERE INSIDE THE WEST BLOCK AS HE GETS READY TO GATHER MANY, MANY PEOPLE ON-LINE. I THINK LAST TIME THIS WAS DONE THERE WERE 300 MPs WHO DIALLED IN FROM WHEREVER THEY WERE WORKING REMOTELY, AND THEY ARE DOING A MOMENT OF SILENCE RIGHT NOW FOR THE CRASH OF THE HELICOPTER IN NOVA SCOTIA. OKAY, ON THE LEFT OF YOUR SCREEN IS THE FEDERAL BRIEFING THAT WE EXPECT TODAY TO HEAR MOSTLY FROM PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS. AS I SAID, THE AGRICULTURE MINISTER AS WELL. SO THE VIRTUAL MEETING TAKING PLACE AT NOON. WE ARE EXPECTING THE PRIME MINISTER TO SHOW UP THERE AND ANSWER SOME QUESTIONS, WHICH IS WHY WE BRING THAT TO YOU LIVE TODAY. TOMORROW, ON WEDNESDAYS, IS WHEN THEY DO THE IN-PERSON SITTING, WHICH IS THE ACTUAL HOUSE OF COMMONS IN A REDUCED CAPACITY, A LARGE QUESTION PERIOD FOR THAT TIME AS WELL WHERE THE PRIME MINISTER ALSO USUALLY ATTENDS, AS WELL AS OPPOSITION LEADERS. BOTH OF THESE THINGS SORT OF GETTING GOING, AND WE WILL BRING THEM TO YOU AS SOON AS SOMEONE POPS UP OTHER THAN THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, EVEN THOUGH I’M SURE HE’S SAYING VERY INTERESTING THINGS. I’LL BRING BECOME VASS VASSY KAPELOS, THE HOST OF “POWER & POLITICS”, AND DAVID COCHRANE FROM THE PARLIAMENTARY BUREAU. WE ARE STANDING BY TO SEE WHAT KIND OF QUESTIONS THE PRIME MINISTER GETS. WE EXPECT THE WAY THE CONSERVATIVES HAVE BEEN POSITIONING THEMSELVES OVER THE PAST NUMBER OF DAYS TO FOCUS AROUND CERB AND WHETHER CHANGES NEED TO BE BROUGHT IN OR WHETHER THERE’S THINGS THAT NEED TO BE ADJUSTED GOING FORWARD, SOMETHING THE GOVERNMENT IS OBVIOUSLY LOOKING AT. BUT IT SEEMS AS THOUGH IT’S SUGGESTING IT MIGHT BE A LITTLE BIT TOO EARLY TO DO THAT, GIVEN AS DAVID POINTED OUT WE’RE REALLY ONLY HALFWAY THROUGH THE FINANCIAL AID MEASURES, MAYBE NOT HALFWAY THROUGH THE PANDEMIC, UNFORTUNATELY. MAYBE LET’S JUST TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE PROVINCES AND THE PACE THAT THINGS ARE GOING AT BECAUSE YESTERDAY MONTREAL OR THE QUEBEC PREMIER WAS FORCED TO PUSH BACK SOME OPENING DATES AROUND MONTREAL AFTER SOME REAL CONCERNS FROM THEIR PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICER AND THEIR MAYOR ABOUT HOW READY THE CITY OF MONTREAL IS, AND CERTAINLY THE OUTBREAK IN MONTREAL DOESN’T REALLY APPEAR TO BE SLOWING DOWN. IN FACT, IT’S MOVING INTO OTHER PARTS OF THE CITY IN SOME PARTICULAR COMMUNITIES. AND I WONDER WHETHER THIS IS JUST HOW IT’S GOING TO BE IN THAT IF PREMIERS ARE, YOU KNOW, AWARE ENOUGH OF THE INFORMATION AND DATA THEY ARE GETTING AND ARE TRYING TO MAKE DECISIONS BASED ON PUBLIC HEALTH WILL INDEED JUST SORT OF MOVE BACK THEIR TIMELINES AND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WILL NEVER HAVE TO SORT OF GET UP AND WAG ITS FINGER AT A PROVINCE BECAUSE EVERYONE AGREES THAT THAT WOULDN’T BE THE BEST MOVE POLITICALLY. IT SEEMS TO HAVE HAPPENED IN THE CASE OF QUEBEC FOR NOW, AT LEAST IN THE CASE OF MONTREAL. BUT I FOUND IT INTERESTING BECAUSE NOTHING REALLY HAD TO HAPPEN FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, AT LEAST PUBLICLY, IN ORDER TO GET FRANÇOIS LEGAULT TO SHIFT HIS POSITION SLIGHTLY ON HOW THINGS WERE GOING TO UNFOLD. VASSY?>>Vassy: YEAH, THAT’S VERY TRUE, AND ACTUALLY NOW THAT YOU MENTION IT I WAS THINKING BACK TO EVERY PREMIER WE’VE SPOKEN TO OVER THE PAST, OR LISTENED TO OVER THE PAST FEW WEEKS, OR WEEK, AS THEY DETAIL THE PHASEDOUT APPROACH BY WHICH THEY ARE GOING TO REOPEN THEIR ECONOMIES, AND ALL OF IT OFTEN COMES WITH A CAVEAT, RIGHT? AND THE CAVEAT IS: WE ARE GOING TO CLOSELY MONITOR THE NUMBERS, AND IF WE SEE MORE EVIDENCE, FOR EXAMPLE, OF COMMUNITY SPREAD OR LARGER AMOUNTS OF COMMUNITY SPREAD, WE ARE NOT AFRAID TO PUT THE BRAKES ON. BLAINE HIGGS YESTERDAY, NO NEW CASES IN NEW BRUNSWICK. EVERYBODY HAS RECOVERED, AND HE WAS STILL VERY CAREFUL IN THE INTERVIEW TO SAY, IF WE SEE ANYTHING CHANGE, THOUGH, WE ARE NOT GOING TO ACCELERATE THE RATE AT WHICH THIS REOPENS. THE LAST THING WE WANT TO DO IS END UP WORSE THAN WE ARE RIGHT NOW. SO THERE IS, I THINK, A SHARED SENSE OF HESITANCY TO MOVE TOO QUICKLY IF THE EVIDENCE DOESN’T SUPPORT IT.>>Rosemary: YEAH, AND THE PREMIER — PREMIER HIGGS ALSO SAYING EVERYBODY CAN FORGET COMING TO NEW BRUNSWICK ANY TIME SOON TOO BECAUSE IF WE’VE GOT THIS UNDER CONTROL, WHICH IT SEEMS THEY DO, WE DON’T WANT PEOPLE IMPORTING IT INTO THE PROVINCE EITHER, SO THAT’S OBVIOUSLY SOMETHING THAT WE’LL HAVE TO THINK ABOUT WHAT KIND OF TRAVEL, EVEN DOMESTICALLY, WE’LL BE ABLE TO DO OVER THE COURSE OF THE SUMMER. DAVID, YOUR THOUGHTS ON ALL OF THAT?>>David: I KIND OF ASK THE QUESTION WHAT WOULD BONNIE HENRY DO, YOU KNOW? IF YOU LOOK AT BRITISH COLUMBIA AND THE MODELLING AND THE DATA THEY PUT OUT YESTERDAY, THEY DEAL WITH THE SAME INTERNATIONAL BORDER RESTRICTIONS THAT EVERY OTHER PROVINCE IN CANADA HAS DEALT WITH. THEY FOLLOW CLOSELY WHAT DR. TAM AND THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION HAS SAID, AND THEY HAVE A BORDER WITH ONE OF THE FIRST HOTSPOTS IN THE UNITED STATES, IN WASHINGTON STATE. BUT THEY HAVE HAD A VERY GOOD COMMUNICATIONS PLAN IN TALKING TO THE PUBLIC. THEY ACTED QUITE DECISIVELY ON THINGS LIKE LONG-TERM CARE HOMES WHEN THEY HAD WHAT WAS I BELIEVE THE FIRST OUTBREAK OF COVID-19 IN THE SENIORS HOME IN CANADA. AND PUT VERY SPECIFIC MEASURES AROUND IT AND CHANGED THE WAY HEALTH CARE WORKERS WORKED AND THE WAY LONG-TERM CARE FACILITIES WERE WORKING AND ALLOWED TO BE VISITED. AND HAD A RESPONSE THAT STOPPED THE PROBLEM WE ARE SEEING IN PLACES LIKE QUEBEC AND ONTARIO. THEY STILL HAVE PROBLEMS THERE. THEY HAVE STILL HAD DEATHS THERE, BUT IT IS NOT RAGING EPIDEMIC AND THE SORT OF THING WE HAVE SEEN IN OTHER PLACES. THEIR CURVE IS NOW VERY FLAT, AND EVEN THE DISCUSSION YESTERDAY OF THE POSSIBILITY OF NO NEW CASES BY CANADA DAY, WHICH IS REMARKABLE WHEN YOU CONSIDER THAT THEY HAVE, YOU KNOW, A VERY DIVERSE POPULATION WITH A STRONG INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL PROFILE IN THE MONTHS LEADING UP TO THIS, HIGH POPULATION DENSITY IN PLACES LIKE VANCOUVER. THEY HAVE DONE A REMARKABLE JOB, AND THEY ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT OPENING UP THE ECONOMY TO QUITE THE DEGREE WE ARE SEEING IN SOME OTHER PROVINCES. AND I THINK THAT IS THE TOUCHSTONE FOR ME WHEN I LOOK AT IT IN TERMS OF HOW BRITISH COLUMBIA HAS COMMUNICATED IT AND HOW THEY’VE DEALT WITH THE CRISES WHEN THEY FLARED UP AND HOW THEY ARE MANAGING WITH THIS GO-SLOW APPROACH. HENRY’S FRONT-LINE VERY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE WITH SARS BACK WHEN THAT HAPPENED MAY BE SOMETHING THAT GUIDES HER ON THIS. SHE HAS BEEN A VERY GOOD COMMUNICATOR. THEY HAVE A GOOD ROBUST PUBLIC HEALTH AGENCY THERE, AND THEY HAVE DEALT WITH THIS IN PROBABLY ONE OF THE BEST WAYS IN CANADA. I MEAN, THE SMALLER ATLANTIC PROVINCES WHICH HAVE ZERO CASES, THE POPULATION MAKEUP THERE CERTAINLY HELPS, THE WAY THEY DON’T HAVE THE BIG LARGE CITIES, YOU KNOW, BACK IN ST. JOHN’S WHERE I’M FROM, IF IT HADN’T BEEN FOR A SINGLE CLUSTER AT A FUNERAL HOME AT A WAKE WHERE IT SPREAD LIKE WILDFIRE, THE NUMBER OF CASES IN NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR WOULD BE ABOUT A THIRD OF WHAT THEY ARE. SO THAT WAS A BIT OF BAD LUCK. BUT WHAT HAS HAPPENED IN BRITISH COLUMBIA IS GOOD RESPONSE AND GOOD PLANNING, AND I THINK THERE ARE A LOT OF LESSONS THAT POLICY-MAKERS SHOULD TAKE FROM WHAT HAS HAPPENED THERE AND TRY TO APPLY IT AS BEST THEY CAN TO THEIR LOCAL CIRCUMSTANCES AS WE MOVE TOWARDS THIS CONVERSATION OF REOPENING. WE ARE TALKING ABOUT THE FUTURE, ROSY. EVERYONE WANTS TO TALK ABOUT WHAT’S NEXT AND GETTING BACK TO NORMAL. THERE IS STILL A TRAGEDY HAPPENING IN LONG-TERM CARE HOMES RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY. IT IS AN ABSOLUTE ONGOING TRAGEDY WHERE PEOPLE ARE DYING ALONE AND BEING MOURNED REMOTELY. AND WE HAVE TO BE CAUTIOUS ABOUT GETTING TOO FAR OVER OUR SKIS AND MOVING TOWARDS GETTING THINGS BACK TO NORMAL WHEN THINGS ARE FAR FROM NORMAL IN SOME OF THE MOST VULNERABLE POPULATIONS IN CANADA.>>Rosemary: AND JUST A REMINDER THAT THE B.C. PREMIER IS EXPECTED TO OUTLINE SOME OF THE REOPENING MEASURES TOMORROW IN BRITISH COLUMBIA, SO THEY ARE MOVING, BUT YOU’RE QUITE RIGHT, MOVING QUITE SLOWLY. AS WE WAIT FOR THE HOUSE OF COMMONS COVID COMMITTEE TO GET REALLY UNDER WAY, LET’S TAKE YOU TO THE PUBLIC HEALTH BRIEFING HERE IN OTTAWA. THAT IS DR. HOWARD NJOO, THE DEPUTY PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICER, WHO HAS BECOME ALSO A FAMILIAR FACE TO MANY CANADIANS. LET’S LISTEN IN TO THIS LIVE, AND WE’LL TAKE YOU TO THE HOUSE OF COMMONS COVID COMMITTEE AS SOON AS IT GETS UNDER WAY. HERE WE GO. [ Voice of Interpreter ] WE ARE SAVED FROM DEADLY INFECTIONS WHEN PHYSICIANS CLEANED THEIR HANDS BEFORE DELIVERING BABIES. IN THE 20TH CENTURY, FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE SHOWED HOW WOUNDED SOLDIERS WERE SPARED FROM DEADLY INFECTIONS THANKS TO HANDWASHING AND OTHER HYGIENE MEASURES. IT IS HARD TO IMAGINE THAT ONCE UPON A TIME THE LIFESAVING PREVENTION POWER OF HANDWASHING WAS NOT KNOWN, ESPECIALLY CONSIDERING ITS ABSOLUTELY INTEGRAL ROLE IN PREVENTING THE SPREAD OF INFECTIONS TODAY. IF I WERE TO TELL YOU THAT THERE IS A SUPER-LOW-COST SOLUTION THAT COULD SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCE EVERYBODY’S LIKELIHOOD OF CATCHING A WHOLE RANGE OF DISEASES, FROM STOMACH BUGS TO ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANT INFECTIONS, AND EVEN DROPLET RESPIRATORY INFECTIONS LIKE COVID-19, WOULD YOU PICK A FAVOURITE TUNE AND SING TO YOURSELF WHILE YOU WASH YOUR HANDS FOR 20 SECONDS? THAT’S ALL IT TAKES. HANDWASHING IS SO IMPORTANT THAT I’M KEEPING IT SHORT AND SIMPLE TODAY. THERE IS SIMPLY NOTHING LIKE A SPLASH OF WATER, A BIT OF SOAP AND A 20-SECOND SCRUB. BACK OF HANDS, FRONT OF HANDS, BETWEEN THE FINGERS, DON’T FORGET YOUR THUMBS AND FINGERTIPS. REPEAT OFTEN TO BEAT BACK THE BUGS. IT’S A LIFESAVER. THANK YOU.>>THANK YOU, DOCTOR. MADAM BIBEAU?>>HELLO, EVERYONE. THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC HAS ACTED LIKE A SHOCK WAVE IN OUR FOOD SUPPLY CHAIN FROM FARMS TO GROCERY STORES. I ASSURE YOU THAT WE ARE WORKING VERY HARD WITH OUR PROVINCIAL, TERRITORIAL, INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS, WITH REPRESENTATIVES FROM THE AGRICULTURAL AND AGRI-FOOD SECTORS TO ENSURE THAT CANADIANS ALWAYS HAVE ACCESS TO GOOD, FRESH, AFFORDABLE FOOD. TODAY PRIME MINISTER TRUDEAU ANNOUNCED ANOTHER SERIES OF MEASURES TO ALLOW OUR AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS AND FOOD PROCESSORS TO CONTINUE THEIR ESSENTIAL WORK, WHICH IS — OR RATHER AND TO SAVE OUR FAMILY FARMS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY. [ End of Interpretation ]. — INVESTMENTS TODAY ARE RELATED TO THE IMPACTS ON OUR FARMERS. DUE TO THE REDUCTION IN FOOD PROCESSING CAPACITY, AS WELL AS THE CLOSURE OF MANY RESTAURANTS AND FOOD SERVICES. BEFORE I PROCEED WITH THE DETAILS OF TODAY’S ANNOUNCEMENT, IT IS IMPORTANT TO RECALL THAT THE BUSINESS RISK MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS BRING ABOUT $1.6 BILLION EACH YEAR TO SUPPORT FARMERS FACING DIFFERENT TYPES OF CHALLENGES. [ Voice of Interpreter ] BEFORE PRESENTING, NEW INVESTMENTS EARMARKED FOR THE AGRICULTURAL AND AGRI-FOOD SECTORS, IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT RISK MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS REPRESENT EVERY YEAR APPROXIMATELY $1.6 BILLION OF ASSISTANCE TO AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS. THESE PROGRAMS, WHICH ARE COST SHARED, NEED TO BE IMPROVED. THAT IS WHY, WITH MY PROVINCIAL AND TERRITORIAL COUNTERPARTS, WE HAVE STARTED TO WORK ON THEM, AND WE STARTED THAT WORK LAST SUMMER. IN ALL CASES, IT’S IMPORTANT FOR AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS TO TAKE FULL ADVANTAGE OF EXISTING PROGRAMS. OTHER INITIATIVES, SUCH AS THOSE WE’VE ANNOUNCED TODAY, WE ARE ANNOUNCING TODAY, WILL MEET EXCEPTION AT THE NEEDS CAUSED BY THE COVID-19 CRISIS. FIRST OF ALL, THE AGRISTABILITY PROGRAM WAS DESIGNED TO LIMIT REVENUE LOSSES CAUSED, FOR EXAMPLE, BY A SIGNIFICANT PRICE DECLINE SUCH AS IS THE CASE FOR PORK RIGHT NOW. ALL PRODUCERS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO JOIN THE PROGRAM AND TO IMPROVE IT WE’VE MADE THE FOLLOWING CHANGES. THE DEADLINE FOR ENROLMENT HAS BEEN PUSHED BACK TO JULY 3. TO ACCESS MORE LIQUIDITY IN CERTAIN PROVINCES, IT IS POSSIBLE TO ASK FOR A 75% ADVANCE PAYMENT, NOT JUST 50%. AND TO HELP THEM ASSESS THE SUPPORT THAT THEY MAY BE ABLE TO OBTAIN, A CALCULATOR IS NOW AVAILABLE ON-LINE. [ End of Interpretation ]. AGRISTABILITY COVERS REVENUE LOSSES, SUCH AS THE DECLINE OF HOG PRICES. ALL FARMERS ARE STRONGLY ENCOURAGED TO ENROL IN THE PROGRAM FOR WHICH THE APPLICATION DEADLINE HAS BEEN EXTENDED UNTIL JULY 3. WHERE THE PROVINCES HAVE ENACTED THE CHANGES, PRODUCERS CAN NOW ACCESS 75% OF THEIR EXPECTED BENEFIT, UP FROM 50%. AND TO HELP THEM ESTIMATE THE LEVEL OF SUPPORT THEY CAN GET FROM THIS PROGRAM, A CALCULATOR IS NOW AVAILABLE ON-LINE. AGRI RECOVERY COVERS EXTRAORDINARY COSTS FACED BY PRODUCERS DUE TO DISASTER. A PROVINCE OR TERRITORY MUST MAKE A REQUEST TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FOR THE PROGRAM TO BE ACTIVATED, AND THE ELIGIBLE COSTS ARE THEN SHARED 60% BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND 40% BY THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT. IT NORMALLY COVERS UP TO 70% OF ELIGIBLE EXPENSES. WE ARE NOW MAKING IT UP TO 90%. DUE TO THE UNPRECEDENTED CRISIS AND THE MEAT PROCESSING BACKLOG CAUSED BY TEMPORARY CLOSURES OR SLOWDOWNS OF PLANTS, THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WILL MAKE AVAILABLE ITS 60% CONTRIBUTION IN ALL PROVINCES OR TERRITORIES WHETHER THE PROVINCE CONTRIBUTES THEIR SHARE OR NOT. TWO OF OUR MAIN ANNOUNCEMENTS TODAY FALL UNDER THE AGRIRECOVERY PROGRAM. FIRST, UP TO $50 MILLION WILL SERVE AS A SET ASIDE PROGRAM TO HELP CATTLE PRODUCERS COVER THE EXTRA COSTS OF KEEPING THEIR ANIMALS ON THE FARMS WHILE THEY WAIT LONGER TO BE PROCESSED. AND UP TO ANOTHER $50 MILLION WILL BE ALLOCATED TO HELP PORK PRODUCERS COVER COSTS OF MANAGING THEIR HERD. [ Voice of Interpreter ] AGRIRECOVERY OPERATES ON A — [ End of Interpretation ].>>Rosemary: OKAY, WE’RE JUST GOING TO PULL AWAY FROM THIS BRIEFING TALKING ABOUT THE $252 MILLION THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCED TODAY, BUT WE ARE GOING TO JOIN THE COVID COMMITTEE HAPPENING VIRTUALLY AT THIS HOUR. THERE IS THE PRIME MINISTER. THERE ARE ABOUT 260 MPs SITTING IN VIRTUALLY FOR THIS COVID COMMITTEE, SPECIAL COMMITTEE. LET’S LISTEN IN LIVE. [ Voice of Interpreter ]>>Prime Minister Trudeau: CANADIANS HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY WHAT HAPPENED IN NOVA SCOTIA. MANY FAMILIES HAVE EXPERIENCED A TRAGEDY, AND WE PROMISED THAT WE WOULD BAN ASSAULT-STYLE WEAPONS. THAT IS WHAT WE ARE GOING TO DO. WE WILL BE WORKING WITH THE PARTIES IN ORDER TO STRENGTHEN ARMS CONTROL, AND IT’S UNFORTUNATE THAT THE CONSERVATIVES ARE AGAINST THAT IN THIS COUNTRY.>>THANK YOU, MR. CHAIRMAN. ON THE CONTRARY, NOW I UNDERSTAND WHAT THE PRIME MINISTER IS SAYING. HOWEVER, I’D LIKE TO KNOW IF HE THINKS GANGS AND ORGANIZED CRIME ARE JUST GOING TO SIMPLY HAND IN THEIR WEAPONS?>>THE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WELL, IN FACT THIS IS AN IMPORTANT STEP, BUT IT’S A FIRST STEP. THERE ARE OTHER THINGS THAT HAVE TO BE DONE IN ORDER TO RESTRICT GUNS IN OUR MUNICIPALITIES AND IN ORDER TO STRENGTHEN BORDER CONTROL AS WELL. SO OTHER MEASURES ARE REQUIRED, AND I’M PLEASED TO HEAR THE MEMBER SPEAK ABOUT OTHER MEASURES, BECAUSE TOGETHER WE WILL HAVE TO WORK TOGETHER IN THE HOUSE TO STRENGTHEN ARMS CONTROL, AND I HOPE THAT THE CONSERVATIVES WILL BE A POSITIVE PART OF THAT DISCUSSION TO KEEP CANADIANS SAFE.>>THANK YOU, MR. CHAIRMAN. I’D LIKE TO SAY THAT THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY HAS ALWAYS CARED ABOUT PROTECTING CANADIANS AGAINST CRIMINALS, NOT AGAINST THEIR OWN CITIZENS. NOW SPEAKING OF CRIMINALS, BEFORE THE PANDEMIC, THE PRIME MINISTER WANTED CORRECTIONAL SERVICES TO BE ABLE TO RELEASE MORE EASILY MORE PRISONERS. GIVEN THE PANDEMIC, SOME THINGS ARE MOVING VERY QUICKLY, BUT THE MINISTER OF PUBLIC SAFETY SAID THAT THE CORRECTIONAL SERVICES WERE ONLY RELEASING PEOPLE WHO WERE APPROACHING THE END OF THEIR SENTENCE. HOWEVER, WE’VE HEARD THAT DANGEROUS PRISONERS WERE RELEASED. CAN THE PRIME MINISTER RESPOND?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE THE PRIME MINISTER.>>MR. CHAIRMAN, THE PROTECTION OF ALL CANADIANS AND THE HEALTH OF ALL CANADIANS IS IMPORTANT TO THIS GOVERNMENT, AND THAT’S WHY WE HAVE TAKEN ADDITIONAL STEPS WITHIN CORRECTIONAL SERVICES IN ORDER TO MAKE SURE THAT SECURITY GUARDS AND INMATES ARE PROTECTED. WE HAVE MADE SOME RELEASES. HOWEVER, THESE ARE VERY SPECIFIC CASES THAT REPRESENT NO OR EXTREMELY LITTLE DANGER TO THE PUBLIC. WE HAD TO STRIKE THE RIGHT BALANCE, BECAUSE WE NEED TO PROTECT CANADIANS, AND WE ALSO NEED TO MAKE SURE THEY ARE SAFE, THEY ARE ALL SAFE.>>MR. PAUL-HUS.>>SO WILL THE PRIME MINISTER CONFIRM THAT NO DANGEROUS CRIMINALS WERE RELEASED TOO QUICKLY IN ORDER TO AVOID THEM HAVING TO BE EXPOSED TO THE VIRUS WITHIN THE PRISONS?>>THERE ARE RULES AND PRINCIPLES IN PLACE. THEY ARE STRICTLY FOLLOWED IN ORDER TO ENSURE THAT THERE ARE NO RELEASES OF PEOPLE WHO POSE A THREAT TO SOCIETY.>>MR. PAUL-HUS, YOU HAVE ONE MINUTE. >>THANK YOU, MR. CHAIRMAN. MR. CHAIRMAN, THE CHINESE GOVERNMENT HAS NOT BEEN TRANSPARENT WITH THE REST OF THE WORLD IN TERMS OF THE VIRUS. AUSTRALIA ASKED FOR AN IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATION. WILL CANADA BE STANDING BESIDE ITS FIVE EYE ALLIES AND CALL ON THE CHINESE GOVERNMENT TO BE TRANSPARENT?>>THE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: MR. CHAIRMAN, WE CONTINUE TO STAND SHOULDER TO SHOULDER WITH THE FIVE EYES ALLIES, AND WE HAVE DONE THAT. THEY ALL DID THAT AS WELL WITH RESPECT TO THOSE WHO WERE DETAINED IN CHINA. WE CONTINUE TO EXPECT ALL ANSWERS TO ALL OUR QUESTIONS BE ANSWERED, AND AT THE SAME TIME WE WILL BE WORKING TO MAKE SURE THAT CANADIANS HAVE ALL THE PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT THEY NEED TO GET THROUGH THIS PANDEMIC.>>THE NEXT QUESTION WILL BE PUT BY MR. BLANCHET. YOUR MICROPHONE, MR. BLANCHET.>>THANK YOU. I IMAGINE THAT I’M ON THE RIGHT CHANNEL. MY APOLOGIES, MR. CHAIRMAN, AND MY APOLOGIES ALSO FOR NOT WEARING THE APPROPRIATE HEADSET. I WAS TRAVELLING AND I DID NOT HAVE IT WITH ME. FOR SEVERAL DAYS NOW THERE HAVE BEEN DISCUSSIONS BETWEEN PEOPLE OF THE BLOC QUÉBÉCOIS AND THE GOVERNMENT TO FIND A WAY THROUGH COLLABORATION TO HELP SENIORS IN QUEBEC AND CANADA. THE TRUST OF OUR PROPOSALS HAVE BEEN — THRUST OF OUR PROPOSALS HAVE BEEN TO TEMPORARILY INCREASE OLD AGE SECURITY, AND I HATE THE TITLE OF THAT, BUT I THINK IT SHOULD HAVE THE WORD “SENIORS” IN IT, BUT REGARDLESS, WE’D LIKE IT INCREASED BY ABOUT $25 A WEEK. THAT’S $100 A MONTH, AND WE’VE BEEN HAVING THESE DISCUSSIONS FOR A WHILE. IT WAS A PROPOSAL THAT WE PUT FORWARD VERY EARLY ON, AND WE’D LIKE THIS TO BE APPROVED. NOW PARLIAMENT STOPPED SITTING IN MARCH. HERE WE ARE IN MAY, AND SENIORS STILL HAVE NOTHING. THEY THEMSELVES ARE GETTING IMPATIENT, AND WE’VE SPENT A GOOD PART OF OUR DAYS RESPONDING TO THEIR CONCERNS, AND YOU KNOW, WHAT I’VE BEEN THINKING IS IT’S NOT UP TO ME TO ANSWER TO SENIORS. IT’S UP TO THE PRIME MINISTER, AND THE QUESTION TO THE PRIME MINISTER IS THIS: WHAT ARE YOU DOING IN TERMS OF A SOLUTION THAT WILL HELP SENIORS’ BUYING POWER IN QUEBEC AND IN CANADA IN THE SHORT TERM?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE THE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: THANK YOU VERY MUCH, MR. CHAIRMAN. OBVIOUSLY SENIORS NEED OUR SUPPORT AND THEY NEED ACCESS TO SERVICES THROUGHOUT THIS PANDEMIC. WE HAVE TAKEN STEPS FOR INCOME REPLACEMENT, FOR THOSE WORKERS, ESSENTIAL WORKERS WHO HAVE LOST THEIR JOBS, BUT WE ARE ALSO LOOKING AT SEVERAL MEASURES, INCLUDING MEASURES FOR SENIORS. THE MOST VULNERABLE SENIORS WILL BE SEEING THE GST REFUNDED, FOR EXAMPLE. WE HAVE ALSO REDUCED BY 20% THE MINIMUM AMOUNT THAT THEY CAN WITHDRAW FROM THEIR RRIFS, AND WE HAVE ALSO PROVIDED $9 MILLION TO HELP THE MOST VULNERABLE SENIORS, BUT I DO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THERE IS MUCH MORE THAT CAN BE DONE, AND THAT IS WHY WE ARE WORKING WITH OTHER MPs, INCLUDING THE MEMBERS OF THE BLOC QUÉBÉCOIS, TO RESPOND TO THOSE CONCERNS AND TO FIND THE BEST WAYS TO HELP SENIORS, YES, IN THE SHORT TERM, BECAUSE SENIORS ARE FACING ISSUES REGARDING THEIR PHYSICAL SAFETY, THEIR HEALTH DUE TO THE PANDEMIC, AND ALSO DUE TO THEIR FINANCIAL SECURITY. WE WILL HAVE MORE TO SAY IN THE COMING DAYS. >>MR. BLANCHET.>>THE PRIME MINISTER HAS SAID OVER THE PAST FEW HOURS THAT HE MAY REQUIRE THE COLLABORATION OF OTHER PARTIES, INCLUDING THE BLOC QUÉBÉCOIS, ON ANOTHER ISSUE, AND WE ARE OPEN TO ALL DISCUSSIONS. HOWEVER, WHEN WE ASK FOR SOMETHING, WE WANT TO SEE THAT SAME OPENNESS ON THEIR SIDE. NOW THE COST OF GROCERIES HAS INCREASED FOR EVERYONE, AND IT HAS INCREASED FOR SENIORS ABOVE 65 YEARS OLD, AND THEIR OLD AGE SECURITY IS MUCH LESS THAN, FOR EXAMPLE, WHAT STUDENTS ARE GETTING. IT’S MUCH LESS THAN THE — THAN CERB, AND SO WHAT I AM SEEING IS SENIORS IN MY RIDING, SENIORS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY, WHO WANT TO KNOW WHY THEY ARE NOT GETTING ANYTHING. THEY WANT TO KNOW WHEN THEY’LL RECEIVE SOMETHING, AND I WANT TO BE ABLE TO ANSWER THEIR QUESTIONS. WHAT WOULD THE PRIME MINISTER SUGGEST I SAY?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE THE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE WILL BE MAKING ANNOUNCEMENTS IN THE COMING DAYS TO HELP SENIORS, ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO ARE MOST VULNERABLE. WE ACKNOWLEDGE THAT GROCERIES ARE INCREASING IN COST FOR EVERYONE, AND THAT’S WHY WE NEED TO DO MORE FOR SENIORS. WE ACKNOWLEDGE THAT WHETHER IT BE IN THE LONG-TERM CARE CENTRES OR WHETHER IT BE OTHER SENIORS THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY, THAT SENIORS HAVE BEEN DEALING WITH HORRIFIC CIRCUMSTANCES. THERE ARE ISOLATED SENIORS. THERE ARE SENIORS WHO ARE WORRIED, WORRIED ABOUT GETTING SICK, WITHOUT BEING ABLE TO SEE THEIR GRANDCHILDREN OR THEIR CHILDREN. AND SO WE MUST BE THERE FOR THEM. THEY ARE A GENERATION THAT FOUGHT FOR US, FOUGHT FOR US IN THE SECOND WORLD WAR, AND NOW WE MUST FIGHT FOR THEM, FIGHT FOR THEM IN THEIR HOMES, AND THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE’RE GOING TO DO. [ End of Interpretation ].>>WE’LL GO ON TO THE NEXT QUESTION. MS. COLLINS.>>HELLO, MR. SPEAKER. EVERY DAY I HEAR FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE STRUGGLING TO PAY THEIR BILLS, TO KEEP A ROOF OVER THEIR HEAD, AND INSTEAD OF MAKING SURE THAT CANADIANS GET THE HELP THAT THEY NEED, THIS GOVERNMENT HAS CREATED COMPLICATED PROGRAMS THAT ARE STILL LETTING PEOPLE FALL THROUGH THE CRACKS. IF THE PRIME MINISTER WON’T COMMIT TO A UNIVERSAL BENEFIT, WILL HE AT LEAST COMMIT TO REMOVING THE RESTRICTIVE ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA THAT IS LEAVING THE MOST VULNERABLE PEOPLE BEHIND?>>THE HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE KNEW WHEN THIS PANDEMIC HIT THAT WE NEEDED TO HELP CANADIANS WHO WERE SUFFERING FROM COAST TO COAST TO COAST, PARTICULARLY THE MOST VULNERABLE. THAT IS WHY WE MOVED FORWARD RAPIDLY WITH THE CANADA EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT THAT HAS HELPED OVER 7 MILLION INDIVIDUAL CANADIANS, HAS MADE A HUGE DIFFERENCE. WE HAD TO MOVE VERY QUICKLY TO GET THIS MONEY OUT TO PEOPLE, AND THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT WE DID. WE ALSO RECOGNIZED THAT THERE WERE — THERE WAS GOING TO BE — NEED TO BE MORE TO DO, AND THAT’S WHY SINCE THAT MOMENT WE HAVE CONTINUALLY WORKED ON — >>MR. SPEAKER — >>Prime Minister Trudeau: — REACHING OUT TO THE MOST VULNERABLE AND — >>MR. SPEAKER, THE GOVERNMENT KEEPS — >>Prime Minister Trudeau: — TARGETED APPROACHES WAS WHAT WAS NEEDED. >>MR. SPEAKER, THE GOVERNMENT — >>MS. COLLINS?>>MR. SPEAKER, THE GOVERNMENT CONTINUES TO LEAVE PEOPLE BEHIND, AND I SPOKE TO A WOMAN IN MY RIDING WHO SHE WAS HOMELESS LAST YEAR, SHE RECENTLY FOUND A JOB AND A PLACE THE LIVE, BUT BECAUSE SHE DIDN’T MAKE $5,000 LAST YEAR, WHEN THE PANDEMIC HIT, SHE DOESN’T QUALIFY FOR ANY BENEFITS, AND SHE DOESN’T QUALIFY, BUT SHE IS ONE OF THE PEOPLE WHO NEEDS IT THE MOST. AND I’M WONDERING WHY THE PRIME MINISTER DOESN’T THINK SHE DESERVES OUR SUPPORT.>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: OUR FOCUS THROUGHOUT THIS CRISIS HAS BEEN ON HELPING THE MOST VULNERABLE, ON TARGETED MEASURES THAT WILL LIFT CANADIANS OUT OF POVERTY, THAT WILL SUPPORT THEM. OVER THE PAST FIVE YEARS WE’VE LIFTED OVER A MILLION PEOPLE OUT OF POVERTY IN THIS COUNTRY, AND WE’VE CONTINUED TO PUT THE MOST VULNERABLE AT THE HEART OF EVERYTHING WE’RE DOING. WE WILL CONTINUE TO. WE’VE PUT SIGNIFICANT INVESTMENTS FORWARD TO CHARITABLE ORGANIZATIONS AND FOUNDATIONS THAT ARE HELPING THE MOST VULNERABLE. AT THE SAME TIME, WE WILL CONTINUE TO LOOK FOR MORE WAYS TO HELP EVEN MORE THAN THE 7 MILLION CANADIANS WHO WILL RECEIVE THE CERB. WE RECOGNIZE THERE’S MORE TO DO, AND WE WILL CONTINUE TRYING TO DO EVERYTHING WE CAN IN THIS UNPRECEDENTED SITUATION.>>MS. COLLINS.>>MR. SPEAKER, THIS GOVERNMENT IS WEIRDLY COMMITTED TO ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA THAT RESULTS IN REGULAR PEOPLE NOT GETTING THE SUPPORT THAT THEY NEED. BUT NOT SO COMMITTED TO CRITERIA FOR CORPORATIONS AND BILLIONAIRES WHO GET OUR HELP. SO IF A COMPANY IS CHEATING THE PUBLIC USING OFFSHORE TAX HAVENS TO NOT PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE, THEY SHOULD NOT BE ELIGIBLE FOR GOVERNMENT BAILOUTS OR BENEFITS. OTHER COUNTRIES, LIKE POLAND AND DENMARK AND FRANCE, HAVE MADE THIS COMMITMENT, AND IF THEY CAN DO IT, SO CAN WE. THE PRIME MINISTER SAID ONE THING ONE DAY AND ANOTHER THE NEXT. SO WILL HE COMMIT NOW THAT IF THE COMPANY HAS MONEY IN OFFSHORE TAX HAVENS THAT THEY WILL NOT RECEIVE PUBLIC FUNDS?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: THE MEASURES WE PUT FORWARD ARE FOCUSED ON HELPING WORKERS WHO LOSE THEIR JOBS, REGARDLESS OF THE COMPANIES THEY WORK FOR. IT IS A SHAME TO HEAR THE NDP THAT USED TO BE THE PARTY OF WORKERS CHOOSING TO JUDGE WORKERS BY WHICH MULTINATIONAL THEY WORK FOR. WE HAVE MOVED FORWARD WITH A WAGE SUBSIDY THAT THE EMPLOYERS ARE OBLIGED TO PASS EVERY SINGLE PENNY ON TO THE WORKERS. THAT IS NOT HELP FOR THE COMPANIES. THAT IS HELP FOR THE WORKERS, AND THAT HAS BEEN OUR FOCUS ALL THE WAY THROUGH. ORDINARY CANADIANS WHO NEED SUPPORT BECAUSE THEY ARE UNABLE TO WORK BECAUSE OF COVID-19. THAT HAS BEEN OUR PRIORITY, THAT IS WHAT CANADIANS NEED RIGHT NOW.>>MR. SPEAKER, I HAVE ONE LAST QUESTION. I TAKE THAT AS A NO.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: — FIGHT AGAINST TAX AVOIDANCE AND TAX EVASION. WE — >>MR. SPEAKER, COULD I ASK MY LAST QUESTION?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: WE WILL CONTINUE TO DO THAT.>>POINT OF ORDER.>>I’M JUST GOING TO PAUSE THE TIME FOR A MOMENT, AND I WANT TO REMIND THE HONOURABLE MEMBERS THAT WE’RE TRYING TO STAY WITHIN COMMITTEE RULES, WHICH STATE THAT THE LENGTH OF THE QUESTION AND THE LENGTH OF AN ANSWER SHOULD BE APPROXIMATELY THE SAME AMOUNT OF TIME, AND I JUST WANT TO REMIND OUR MEMBERS OF THAT. I’LL JUST MOVE ON TO — I GO BACK TO MS. COLLINS. SHE HAS ABOUT 45 SECONDS LEFT, AND HOPEFULLY THAT’S ABOUT HALF AND HALF FOR THE QUESTION AND THE ANSWER. MS. COLLINS.>>THANKS SO MUCH, MR. SPEAKER. MY LAST QUESTION IS ABOUT HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS, AND MY COMMUNITY WAS FACING A CRISIS LONG BEFORE THE PANDEMIC HIT, AND NOW PEOPLE WHO ARE LIVING ON THE STREETS OR IN PARKS DON’T HAVE THE LUXURY OF FOLLOWING PUBLIC HEALTH ADVICE AND JUST STAYING HOME. AND IN VICTORIA, THE PROVINCE, AND THE MUNICIPALITY HAVE STEPPED UP WITH SOLUTIONS TO HOUSE PEOPLE, AT LEAST FOR THE SHORT TERM IN LOCAL HOTELS. WILL THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT RESPOND TO THIS IMMEDIATE CRISIS AND PROVIDE THE NEEDED INVESTMENTS IN LONG-TERM STABLE HOUSING?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER, IN 25 SECONDS OR LESS, PLEASE.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: YES, MR. SPEAKER, WE HAVE MOVED FORWARD WITH A HISTORIC NATIONAL HOUSING STRATEGY THAT PUTS $40 BILLION TOWARDS HOUSING, WORKING WITH PARTNERS WE HAVE REDUCED POVERTY BY OVER A MILLION PEOPLE IN THIS COUNTRY, BUT THERE IS MORE TO DO. WE ARE REDUCING HOMELESSNESS BY HALF WITH HISTORIC INVESTMENTS, AND WE RECOGNIZE THAT DURING THIS PANDEMIC THERE’S EVEN MORE TO DO FOR VULNERABLE CANADIANS, AND WE ARE PARTNERING WITH ORDERS OF GOVERNMENT TO MAKE SURE THAT HAPPENS. [ Voice of Interpreter ]>>POINT OF PRIVILEGE OR POINT OF ORDER.>>YES. >>I’M AFRAID I DON’T HEAR THE FRENCH INTERPRETATION OF THE PRIME MINISTER.>>I’M SORRY, I COULDN’T HEAR WHAT YOU SAID.>>I WOULD JUST LIKE THIS TO BE CHECKED BECAUSE I WASN’T ABLE TO HEAR THE FRENCH INTERPRETATION OF THE PRIME MINISTER WHEN HE WAS SPEAKING ENGLISH.>>ALL RIGHT, I’LL ASK FOR THAT TO BE CHECKED.>>MERCI. [ End of Interpretation ].>>I’M SORRY?>>Prime Minister Trudeau: I CAN TRY SPEAKING ENGLISH. I BELIEVE I WAS ON THE ENGLISH TAB, AS IS IMPORTANT. ARE YOU HEARING THE TRANSLATION NOW?>>THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT THE ISSUE WAS. I JUST WANT TO POINT THAT OUT TO ALL THE MEMBERS. I’M SPEAKING ENGLISH RIGHT NOW AND I’M ON THE ENGLISH BUTTON OR ENGLISH TOGGLE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SCREEN. IT DOES CREATE A BIT OF A DISJOINTED WHEN WE’RE SPEAKING, BUT IT’S THE WAY TO GET AROUND SO THAT WE DO HAVE INTERPRETATION THAT ACTUALLY WORKS FOR EVERYONE. THE NEXT QUESTION WILL GO TO THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION, MR. SCHEER.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH, MR. SPEAKER, AND AS THIS IS OUR FIRST OPPORTUNITY TO MEET IN ANY FORM, I WANTED TO TAKE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO EXPRESS MY CONDOLENCES TO THE FAMILY OF THE BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN WHO LOST THEIR LIVES IN THE HELICOPTER CRASH. I KNOW I SPEAK FOR ALL PARLIAMENTARIANS WHEN I EXTEND OUR SYMPATHIES TO THEIR FAMILIES, LOVED ONES. MR. SPEAKER, I WANT TO RAISE WITH THE PRIME MINISTER AN ISSUE THAT I RAISED SEVERAL TIMES BEFORE, AND THAT IS A GAP IN THE WAGE SUBSIDY PROGRAM. THERE IS A COMPANY IN MY RIDING THAT EMPLOYS THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE ACROSS THE COUNTRY. LAST YEAR THEY ACQUIRED ANOTHER COMPANY. BOTH COMPANIES SEPARATELY WOULD QUALIFY FOR THE WAGE SUBSIDY, BUT BECAUSE THE RULES THE GOVERNMENT DESIGNED, TOGETHER THEY DO NOT. SO EVEN THOUGH COLLECTIVELY THEY HAVE EXPERIENCED A MASSIVE DROP IN REVENUE AND WOULD OTHERWISE BE ELIGIBLE, SO FAR THEY HAVE BEEN ABLE TO GET CONFIRMATION THAT THEY WILL BE ABLE TO ACCESS THE PROGRAM. AND AS A RESULT, THOUSANDS OF JOBS ARE THREATENED. WILL THE PRIME MINISTER BE ABLE TO DELIVER SOME GOOD NEWS TO THE PEOPLE WHO WORK FOR BRANT TRACTOR ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: I THANK THE HONOURABLE MEMBER FOR HIS QUESTION AND HIS ADVOCACY FOR BOTH HIS COMMUNITY AND BUSINESSES IN HIS RIDING. AS I TOLD HIM WHEN WE SPOKE DIRECTLY, FINANCE OFFICIALS HAVE BEEN DIRECTLY IN CONTACT WITH THE COMPANY IN HIS RIDING. WE RECOGNIZE THERE ARE PARTICULAR ELEMENTS IN REGARD TO THIS COMPANY THAT ARE CHALLENGING AROUND APPLICATIONS FOR THE WAGE SUBSIDY. BUT I KNOW FINANCE OFFICIALS ARE WORKING VERY HARD TO TRY AND MAKE SURE THAT EVERYONE WHO NEEDS THE SUBSIDY GETS IT SO THAT THE WORKERS IN HIS COMMUNITY CAN GET THE SUPPORT THEY NEED.>>MR. SCHEER.>>THE PRIME MINISTER KNOWS THERE ARE MANY COMPANIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY THAT FALL INTO THIS CATEGORY AS WELL, SO WE’RE HOPING FOR SOME GOOD NEWS. DESPITE THE TIME AND DATE, IT IS WELL INTO MAY NOW, AND IMPORTANT DECISIONS HAVE TO BE MADE IN THE VERY SHORT ORDER. THERE ARE OTHER ASPECTS OF THE GOVERNMENT’S PLANS TO HELP GET PEOPLE THROUGH THIS CRISIS THAT ARE ALSO CAUSING PEOPLE TO FALL THROUGH THE CRACKS. THE PLAN TO HELP BUSINESSES WITH RENTS ONLY APPLIES AFTER A BUSINESS HAS LOST 70% OF THEIR REVENUE. AS PROVINCES START TO OPEN UP, MANY COMPANIES ARE GOING TO BE FACED WITH THE VERY DIFFICULT DECISION OF OPERATING AT, PERHAPS, 35%, 45% OF REGULAR REVENUES, SO THEY WILL NOT BE ABLE TO ACCESS THESE PROGRAMS, AND IN MANY CASES THERE’S GOING TO BE A DISINCENTIVE TO REOPEN AND PUT PEOPLE BACK TO WORK. SO WILL THE PRIME MINISTER AMEND THESE PROGRAMS TO PROVIDE FOR MORE FLEXIBILITY SO THAT MORE AND MORE CANADIANS CAN START TO RETURN TO WORK IN THE WEEKS AHEAD?>>THE RIGHT HONOURABLE PRIME MINISTER.>>Prime Minister Trudeau: MR. SPEAKER, WE ARE IN AN UNPRECEDENTED CRISIS, AND WE HAD TO MOVE QUICKLY TO SUPPORT WORKERS, TO SUPPORT FAMILIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY, AND THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE DID, AND WE’RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO WORK TO TRY AND RESPOND TO THE REALITY THAT PEOPLE AND BUSINESSES ARE FACING RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY. I AM EAGER TO BE FACED WITH THE CHALLENGE OF HOW TO EASE OFF IN THESE MEASURES SO THAT PEOPLE CAN GET BACK TO WORK. WE ARE GETTING CLOSER TO THAT POINT, BUT WE ARE NOT THERE YET. WE ARE STILL FOCUSED VERY MUCH ON GIVING THE SUPPORT TO WORKERS AND TO FAMILIES THAT ARE SO NECESSARY IN THIS TIME OF CRISIS, AND AS DIFFERENT PROVINCES MOVE FORWARD TOWARDS REOPENING, AS WE LOOK AT DIFFERENT PATHS FORWARD, I KNOW I WOULD BE ABLE TO COUNT ON ALL MEMBERS IN THIS HOUSE AND INDEED CANADIANS FROM COAST TO COAST TO COAST TO FIGURE OUT TOGETHER WHAT THE BEST WAY TO MOVE FORWARD ON KEEPING US SAFE AND RESTORING ECONOMIC ACTIVITY IN THE RIGHT WAY WILL BE, AND THAT WILL BE GOOD TO WORK ON TOGETHER ONCE WE GET THERE.>>WE HAVE ABOUT A MINUTE LEFT, MAYBE 30 SECOND QUESTION AND 30 SECOND ANSWER. MR. SCHEER?>>MR. SPEAKER, NO ONE IS DISPUTING THE NEED TO MOVE QUICKLY. WE ARE NOW IN MAY, THOUGH, AND THESE PROGRAMS HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED FOR WEEKS CANADIANS HAVE BEEN ACCESSING THEM, AND THE PROBLEMS WITH THEM HAVE BEEN FLAGGED FOR THE GOVERNMENT FOR WEEKS AS WELL. WE’RE ALSO GOING TO SEE AN ADDITIONAL CHALLENGE FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE RECEIVING THE EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT WHO MAY HAVE THE OPTION TO GO BACK TO WORK AND WORK SOME HOURS. THEY ARE FACED WITH A HARD CAP OF $1,000 A MONTH BEFORE THEY LOSE THE CERB. CONSERVATIVES ARE PROPOSING A PROGRESSIVE SYSTEM, A MORE FLEXIBLE SYSTEM, WHERE PEOPLE WILL BE ABLE TO EARN MORE WITHOUT LOSING THEIR BENEFITS AS BUSINESSES RAMP UP BUT BEFORE NORMAL WORKING HOURS ARE RESTORED. SO AGAIN, WILL THE PRIME MINISTER PUT IN, BUILD IN SOME FLEXIBILITY TO LIFT THE RESTRICTIVE CEILING ON WHAT PEOPLE CAN EARN BEFORE LOSING THE BENEFITS SO THAT IT ALWAYS PAYS MORE TO WORK?>>I BELIEVE THE TIMER IS TELLING ALL OF US THAT IT’S NOT — THE TIME IS UMM — UP, BUT I’LL GIVE THE PRIME MINISTER ABOUT 30 SECONDS TO ANSWER THAT, PLEASE. >>Prime Minister Trudeau: THANK YOU. OUR GOVERNMENT IS GIVING SUPPORT TO CANADIANS RIGHT ACROSS THE COUNTRY WITH MANY MEASURES. THAT HAS BEEN OUR PRIORITY, AND THAT IS WHAT WE HAVE WORKED ON. I HEAR THE CONCERNS THAT THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY HAS AROUND DISINCENTIVES. WE ARE GOING TO WORK WITH COMMUNITIES AND WITH INDUSTRY AS WE LOOK TO REOPEN TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE HAVE OPPORTUNITIES TO WORK AND ARE NOT PENALIZED FOR IT. BUT OUR OVERARCHING PRIORITY WAS ALLOWING CANADIANS TO BE CONFIDENT IN THEIR ABILITY TO STAY HOME AND CARE FOR THEIR LOVED ONES AND BUY GROCERIES AND PAY THEIR RENT SO WE COULD KEEP SAFE DURING THIS PANDEMIC. THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE DID.>>WE WILL MOVE ON TO MS. GLADU NOW.>>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. MR. SPEAKER, SENIORS IN MY RIDING ARE STRUGGLING, AND WE’VE HEARD THE PRIME MINISTER ADMIT THAT THEIR FIXED INCOMES, SOME OF THEM ARE DOWN AND RENT IS INCREASING AND THE PRICE OF GROCERIES IS INCREASING. HE’S BEEN SAYING FOR WEEKS THAT IN THE COMING DAYS SOMETHING WOULD BE ANNOUNCED FOR SENIORS, AND THE FACT IS THEY RAN ON AN ELECTION PROMISE TO INCREASE THE OLD AGE SECURITY. AND SO WHICH OF THE DAYS IN THE COMING WEEKS WILL THEY KEEP THEIR PROMISE TO SENIORS?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER. THE HONOURABLE MINISTER MAY HAVE THEIR MUTE ON. PLEASE CHECK.>>OH, I DOUBLE CLICKED. MY APOLOGIES. SO LET’S START AGAIN. SORRY ABOUT THAT. AFTER A LIFETIME OF HARD WORK, OF COURSE, CANADIANS DESERVE PEACE OF MIND WHEN IT COMES TO THEIR RETIREMENT SECURITY. COVID-19 IS DEFINITELY HAVING A DISPROPORTIONATE IMPACT ON SENIORS. THEY HAVE A GREATER NEED FOR SERVICES AND SUPPORTS. HAPPILY, THEIR PENSIONS AND THEIR BENEFITS ARE STILL FLOWING, UNLIKE SO MANY OF THOSE THAT HAVE LOST THEIR JOBS, BUT IT’S STILL TOUGH. WE HAVE INTRODUCED MEASURES IN THE BEGINNING OF APRIL PEOPLE RECEIVED A GST CREDIT, SUPPLEMENTARY PAYMENT THAT WAS $400 ON AVERAGE FOR SINGLE SENIORS AND $600 FOR COUPLES. SO THAT WAS A SIGNIFICANT HELP.>>POINT OF ORDER, MR. SPEAKER.>>WE HAVE A POINT OF ORDER COMING FROM MS. GLADU. >>YES, I THINK, MR. SPEAKER, THAT YOU HAD REMINDED US AS MEMBERS THAT THE AMOUNT OF TIME FOR THE ANSWER SHOULD BE SIMILAR FOR THE AMOUNT OF TIME FOR THE QUESTION, SO I WOULD JUST ASK THE MINISTER TO KEEP TO THAT, AND IF I COULD GO ON TO MY SECOND QUESTION.>>WE’LL GO ON TO THE SECOND QUESTION, AND THAT IS SOMETHING I WANT TO REMIND ALL THE HONOURABLE MEMBERS, TO KEEP THEIR ANSWERS AS CONCISE AS POSSIBLE — OR THEIR ANSWERS, AS WELL AS THEIR QUESTIONS, AS CONCISE AS POSSIBLE. MS. GLADU. >>VERY GOOD. MY RIDING IS ON THE BORDER OF CANADA AND THE U.S., AND WE SEE A NUMBER OF INCONSISTENCIES IN WHAT IS CONSIDERED ESSENTIAL TRAVEL IN THE U.S. AND THE INTERPRETATION OF DIFFERENT CBSA AGENTS. SO WHILE WE HAVE AMERICANING COMING OVER TO BUY CHEAPER PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS AND TO FISH, WE HAVE INDIVIDUALS IN MY RIDING WHO ARE TRYING TO GET AUDITORS OVER SO THAT THEY CAN BE APPROVED FOR EXPORT BUSINESSES BEING DECLINED. WE HAVE PEOPLE WHO HAVE PURCHASED MASKS FROM CANADIAN PRODUCERS FOR THEIR BOATS THAT ARE BEING DISALLOWED. PEOPLE TRYING TO SELL PLASMA INTO THE U.S. BEING DENIED. AND SO MY QUESTION FOR THE MINISTER IS WHEN WILL THEY CLARIFY THE RULES TO THE CBSA AGENTS SO THAT ESSENTIAL TRAVEL AND TRADE AND COMMERCE, INCLUDING INDIVIDUAL COMMERCE, IS UNDERSTOOD?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER.>>THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR THE QUESTION. MR. SPEAKER, WE HAVE IMPLEMENTED VERY RIGOROUS RULES THAT HAVE BEEN WELL DOCUMENTED AND UNDERSTOOD BY CBSA TO STOP ALL NON-ESSENTIAL TRAVEL, AND THOSE MEASURES HAVE BEEN VERY SUCCESSFUL. WE HAVE SEEN A REDUCTION OF TRAVEL COMING INTO CANADA, AND AT THE SAME TIME WE RECOGNIZE THE IMPORTANCE OF MAINTAINING ESSENTIAL SUPPLY ROUTES SO THAT GOODS AND SERVICES COULD REACH CANADA, THAT WE WOULD PUT GROCERIES ON OUR SHELF, AND WE ALSO RECOGNIZE THE IMPORTANT WORK THAT ESSENTIAL WORKERS DO ON BOTH SIDES OF THE BORDER. WE HAVE PROVIDED CBSA WITH CLARIFICATION AND THEIR INTERPRETATION OF THOSE RULES HAS BEEN BROADLY CONSISTENT, AND I KNOW THAT I’VE HEARD FROM A NUMBER OF OUR COLLEAGUES IN CAUCUS WITH CONCERNS ABOUT INDIVIDUAL CASES, AND WHEN WE RECEIVE THOSE INQUIRIES, WE FOLLOW UP IMMEDIATELY, AND I WANT TO ASSURE THE MEMBER WE WILL CONTINUE TO DO THAT. BUT THE WORK THAT WE ARE DOING TO STOP NON-ESSENTIAL TRAVEL HAS BEEN IMPORTANT FOR THE HEALTH AND SAFETY OF CANADIANS, AND WE’RE GOING TO CONTINUE WITH THAT WORK.>>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. MY NEXT QUESTION HAS TO DO WITH FULL PROPRIETOR BUSINESSES. WE SEE MANY OF THEM THAT ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR ANY OF THE BENEFIT PACKAGES THAT HAVE BEEN ROLLED OUT, EI, CERB, THE WAGE SUBSIDY, ET CETERA, AND SO WHAT IS THE GOVERNMENT GOING TO DO TO ADDRESS FULL PROPRIETORS THAT ARE CURRENTLY FOLLOWING THROUGH THE CRACKS?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER.>>WELL, THANK YOU FOR THE QUESTION. AND FIRST LET ME SAY THAT WE ABSOLUTELY RECOGNIZE THAT THERE ARE BUSINESSES ACROSS THE COUNTRY OF ALL SIZES THAT ARE FINDING THIS TO BE EXTREMELY DIFFICULT. THE INTENT OF THE MEASURES THAT WE PUT FORWARD IS OBVIOUSLY NOT ONLY TO GIVE INDIVIDUALS A BRIDGE BUT TO GIVE BUSINESSES A BRIDGE, AND WE ARE LOOKING AT WAYS THAT WE CAN ENSURE THAT THE CANADA EMERGENCY BUSINESS ACCOUNT HAS THE BROADEST POSSIBLE APPLICATION. MORE THAN 5,000 BUSINESSES HAVE ALREADY BEEN APPROVED FOR THESE LOANS REPRESENTING OVER $20 BILLION, AND WE ARE LOOKING AT WAYS THAT WE CAN CONSIDER THAT ELIGIBILITY PROCESS, RECOGNIZES THAT WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THE PROGRAM CONTINUES TO HAVE ITS DESIRED IMPACT AND WE’LL HAVE MORE TO SAY ON THAT. THANK YOU.>>NOW THE NEXT QUESTION WILL GO TO MR. ARNOLD.>>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER, AND THIS IS MY FIRST APPEARANCE ON THESE, SO I HOPE YOU CAN HEAR ME OKAY.>>WE CAN HEAR YOU FINE. PLEASE PROCEED.>>OKAY. THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. IT’S GOOD TO SEE EVERYONE’S FACES. MR. SPEAKER, ON APRIL 3 THE FISHERIES MINISTER SAID OPENING DATES WOULD BE DETERMINED BY HARVESTERS. SINCE THEN, THE MINISTER OVERRULED THE WILL OF HARVESTERS IN PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND AND IN THE GULF WHO VOTED TO START THEIR SEASONS ON TIME. SHE HAS ALLOWED HARVESTERS FROM HER OWN RIDING TO PROCEED WITH THEIR SEASONS AS SCHEDULED, GIVING THEM ACCESS TO MARKETS WEEKS BEFORE THEIR COMPETITORS. THIS DOUBLE STANDARD IS SEVERELY UNFAIR, AND ATLANTIC HARVESTERS ARE FURIOUS, AS WAS DEMONSTRATED DURING A PROTEST ON THE CANSO CAUSEWAY YESTERDAY. WHEN WILL THE MINISTER STOP ABUSING HER POSITION AND START RESPECTING FISH HARVESTERS BY OPENING UP LOBSTER FISHES AREAS 23, 24 AND 26?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER.>>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER, AND I’D LIKE TO THANK MY HONOURABLE COLLEAGUE FOR THE QUESTION. MR. SPEAKER, WE’RE MAKING DECISIONS AN WHEN SEASONS ARE OPEN. THERE ARE A NUMBER OF FACTORS TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT. THEY ARE COMPLEX DECISIONS THAT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT WHAT IS NECESSARY FOR PROCESSORS TO BE READY FOR THE SEASON, WHAT IS NECESSARY FOR HARVESTERS TO BE READY FOR THE SEASON AS WELL AS SOCIO-ECONOMIC IMPACTS ON THE AREA. WE ARE LOOKING AT ALL OF THOSE MEASURES WHEN WE MAKE THESE DECISIONS. WE DO NOT MAKE THEM LIGHTLY. THEY ARE DIFFICULT DECISIONS TO MAKE, AND THE DECISIONS WE HAVE MADE AROUND THE GULF, ONE OF THE MAIN THINGS WE HEARD FROM ALL OF THOSE AREAS IS IT WAS VERY IMPORTANT FOR THEM TO START ANT SAME DATE. THAT IS WHY THE DECISION WAS MADE TO START ON MAY 15. WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING THE HARVESTERS OUT ON THE WATER. WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO THE PRODUCT THAT THEY BRING IN, AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO DO EVERYTHING WE CAN TO SUPPORT THE INDUSTRY. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>EXCUSE ME, MADAM MINISTER, NO, THE HONOURABLE MINISTER HAD ANOTHER 15 SECONDS COMING TO HER. I’D LIKE TO REMIND THE HONOURABLE MEMBERS NOT TO INTERRUPT THE PERSON WHILE THEY ARE SPEAKING. I’LL DO MY BEST TO TRY TO KEEP IT ABOUT LEVEL. MAYBE WHAT I’LL START DOING IS MUTING IF IT’S NECESSARY, BUT INTERRUPTING IS NOT GOING TO SOLVE ANYTHING. MR. ARNOLD, I’LL LET YOU CONTINUE. YOU HAVE 3 MINUTES AND 9 SECONDS LEFT.>>THANK YOU, MR. CHAIR. WEST COAST FISHING TOURISM IS A KEY ECONOMIC DRIVER IN BRITISH COLUMBIA, ESPECIALLY IN COASTAL COMMUNITIES. YET THE PUBLIC FISHERY GETS NO RESPECT FROM THIS GOVERNMENT. LAST YEAR THE PUBLIC FISHERY WAS WEAKENED BY RESTRICTIONS BASED ON IDEOLOGY AND NOT SCIENCE. A YEAR LATER AND THE FISHERIES MINISTER REFUSES TO DISCUSS VIABLE SCIENCE-BASED SOLUTIONS TO CONSERVATIVE B.C.’S PUBLIC FISHERIES. DOES THE MINISTER AND HER GOVERNMENT HAVE A WILL AND A PLAN TO SUPPORT CANADA’S WEST COAST FISHERIES AND THE COMMUNITIES THEY SUSTAIN?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER, IN 30 SECONDS, PLEASE. >>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. MR. SPEAKER, THE FISHERY IS IMPORTANT IN EVERY COASTAL COMMUNITY. I RECOGNIZE THE VALUE THAT IT HAS ON OUR ECONOMY, AS WELL AS WHAT IT MEANS TO OUR COASTAL COMMUNITIES. THAT’S WHY WE CONTINUE TO WORK WITH THOSE COMMUNITIES AND WITH THE FISHERIES TO MAKE SURE THAT WE’RE DOING EVERYTHING WE POSSIBLY CAN TO SUPPORT THEM. DURING THESE EXTREMELY DIFFICULT TIMES, WE’RE WORKING ON MEASURES WITH THE FISHERY IN B.C. AS WELL AS ON THE ATLANTIC COAST AND THE EASTERN QUEBEC TO MAKE SURE WE’RE DELIVERING FOR THEM AND MAKING SURE THAT ALL OF THE ISSUES THAT THEY ARE HAVING ARE BEING ADDRESSED. THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER.>>MR. ARNOLD.>>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. CANADA’S SENIORS, ESPECIALLY THOSE ON BASIC INCOMES, ARE BEING HARD HIT BY THE COVID-19 CRISIS. AND AS THEY FACE NEW RISING COSTS AND SCARCITY OF SERVICES, SENIORS REQUIRE ADEQUATE KIFR SUPPORTS, FREEDOM TO ACCESS THEIR SAVINGS. WHY HAS THIS GOVERNMENT FAILED TO RECOGNIZE THE INCREASING CHALLENGES THAT SENIORS ARE FACING AND WILL THE GOVERNMENT SUPPORT CANADA’S SENIOR CITIZENS?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER, IN 30 SECONDS OR LESS, PLEASE. >>THANK YOU. I WANT TO THANK MY HONOURABLE COLLEAGUE FOR THAT QUESTION, AND I JUST WANT TO ASSURE HIM THAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN FOCUSED ON SENIORS DURING THIS CHALLENGING TIME. WE HAVE PROVIDED A GST CREDIT SUPPLEMENT OF $400 FOR SINGLE SENIORS AND $600 FOR COUPLES FROM LOW AND MODEST-INCOME SENIORS. WE HAVE ALSO ENSURED THAT THE CANADA EMERGENCY RESPONSE BENEFIT IS THERE FOR SENIORS THAT HAVE LOST INCOME DUE TO COVID-19. AND SO WE’VE MADE THEM ELIGIBLE — >>WE’LL GO BACK TO MR. ARNOLD. MR. ARNOLD, YOU HAVE A MINUTE. HOPEFULLY A 30 SECOND QUESTION AND A 30 SECOND ANSWER. >>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. ON APRIL 23 MY COLLEAGUES AND I CALLED ON THE GOVERNMENT TO CREATE A PROGRAM THAT WOULD MATCH STUDENTS SEEKING EMPLOYMENT WITH EMPLOYERS IN CANADA’S ESSENTIAL FOOD SUPPLY CHAINS. WHAT HAS THE GOVERNMENT DONE TO MATCH STUDENTS AND OTHER CANADIANS SEEKING EMPLOYMENT WITH EMPLOYERS IN THE AGRICULTURE AND AGRI-FOOD SECTORS, INCLUDING THOSE IN THE FISH AND SEAFOOD SECTOR?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER.>>THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. I APOLOGIZE FOR THE DELAY. MR. SPEAKER, WE’RE DOING ALL WE CAN TO MAKE SURE THAT WE CREATE USING OUR EXISTING EMPLOYMENT PROGRAMS, OPPORTUNITIES FOR STUDENTS TO WORK AND GET WORK EXPERIENCE THIS SUMMER. WE KNOW, THOUGH, THAT THIS IS GOING TO BE REALLY TOUGH, ESPECIALLY IN AREAS LIKE AGRICULTURE. SO WE HAVE DEDICATED STREAMS FOR AGRICULTURE SECTOR EMPLOYERS TO ACCESS STUDENTS WITH HELP FROM THE GOVERNMENT, AND A NUMBER OF DIFFERENT INITIATIVES, INCLUDING CANADA SUMMER JOBS, WHICH I’M REALLY EXCITED TO SEE THE RESULTS OF IN THE COMING DAYS. THANK YOU.>>NOW WE’LL GO ON TO THE NEXT QUESTION FROM MS. HARDER.>>POINT OF ORDER, MR. CHAIR.>>MS. REMPLE, YOU HAVE A POINT OF ORDER?>>THANK YOU, MR. CHAIR. WITH MR. ARNOLD, IT’S THE SECOND TIME I NOTE YOU’VE THREATENED TO CUT OFF A CONSERVATIVE MICROPHONE. I’M JUST WONDERING, GIVEN THAT THIS ISN’T THE HOUSE OF COMMONS AND IT’S STRUCTURED AS A COMMITTEE, WHAT STANDING ORDER WOULD GIVE YOU THE RIGHT TO CUT OFF A MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT USING A MUTE BUTTON? IT SEEMS A LITTLE ADDICTORIAL. I’M JUST WONDERING IF YOU COULD CLARIFY THAT BASED ON A STANDING ORDER. >>I DON’T THINK I THREATENED TO USE A MUTE, BUT THANK YOU FOR BRINGING THAT UP. I’M TRYING TO KEEP THE RULES WHERE THE QUESTIONS AND THE ANSWERS SO THERE’S NO INTERRUPTIONS ON EITHER SIDE ARE EQUAL, AND THAT’S WHAT WE’RE GOING TO CONTINUE. I DIDN’T USE THE MUTE. I DID IT VERBALLY, AND I THINK THAT’S A LITTLE MORE CIVIL WAY OF DOING IT. I HOPE YOU APPROVE. I’M NOT ASKING YOU TO COMMENT ON THAT. WE’LL GO OVER TO MS. HARDER. THANK YOU.>>POINT OF ORDER, MR. CHAIR. YOU ACTUALLY — TO ME LAST WEEK AND MR. ARNOLD, YOU ACTUALLY DID SUGGEST THAT YOU WERE GOING TO USE THE MUTE BUTTON.>>I BELIEVE IF WE TAKE THE — I BELIEVE IF WE TAKE EVERYTHING OUT AND GO OVER THEM, BRING THE PAPERS WITH THE ACTUAL VERBIAGE ON IT WHERE I THREATENED AND WE’LL GO OVER IT, BUT I DON’T THINK THIS IS THE VENUE TO DO THAT IF YOU WANT TO BRING FORWARD A POINT OF ORDER. I’M ALL IN FAVOUR — >>WELL, IT IS. I AM BRINGING FORWARD A POINT OF ORDER.>>VERY GOOD. WE’LL LOOK INTO IT AND GET BACK TO YOU.>>I’M ASKING YOU TO CLARIFY — >>WE’LL GO ON TO MS. HARDER. MS. HARDER? YOUR MICROPHONE, ARE YOU ON MUTE?>>THANK YOU.>>THERE WE GO.>>CANADIANS HAVE OUTRIGHTLY EXPRESSED OUTRAGE AND DISAPPOINTMENT WITH THE GOVERNMENT’S INITIATIVE TO PUT A GUN BAN IN PLACE. I’M WONDERING IF THE MINISTER STANDS BY HIS COMMENT THAT THESE CHANGES WOULD HAVE PREVENTED THE TRAGEDY IN NOVA SCOTIA.>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER, IN 15 SECONDS OR LESS, PLEASE.>>WE HAVE HEARD FROM HEALTH PROFESSIONALS, WOMEN’S RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS, VICTIMS’ GROUPS, AND THE POLICE AND OUR UNIONS ALL VERY SUPPORTIVE OF THE GOVERNMENT’S MEASURE TO BAN WEAPONS THAT HAVE NO PLACE IN CIVIL SOCIETY AND WERE DESIGNED TO KILL PEOPLE.>>MS. HARDER?>>IT’S INTERESTING THAT THE MINISTER IS MISLEADING CANADIANS IN THAT COMMENT, BECAUSE THE CHIEF OF POLICE, THE ASSOCIATION FOR THE CHIEFS OF POLICE HAVE SAID THAT A GUN BAN WILL DO NOTHING OF THE SORT, THAT IT ACTUALLY WILL NOT PROTECT CANADIANS, SO I’D BE CURIOUS, HOW MANY CRIMINALS WILL SEE GUNS SEIZED BECAUSE OF THE CHANGES THAT HAVE BEEN IMPLEMENTED BY THE LIBERAL GOVERNMENT?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER. >>YEAH, LET’S ACTUALLY QUOTE WHAT THE POLICE HAVE SAID. THE ONTARIO ASSOCIATION OF CHIEFS OF POLICE SAY THEY SUPPORT A PROHIBITION ON ALL MILITARY-DESIGNED ASSAULT RIFLES. THE CHIEF IN TORONTO SAID TAKING MILITARY ASSAULT RIFLES OFF STREETS CONTRIBUTES TO PUBLIC SAFETY, AND THE CANADIAN ASSOCIATION OF POLICE CHIEFS HAS DECLARED THAT MILITARY ASSAULT RIFLES ARE PRODUCED FOR THE SOLE PURPOSE OF KILLING PEOPLE IN LARGE NUMBERS, AND THEY URGE SUCCESSIVE GOVERNMENTS TO ENACT THE LEGISLATION TO BAN ALL MILITARY ASSAULT RIFLES. >>MS. HARDER.>>SO THE ANSWER TO THAT QUESTION IS ZERO, ABSOLUTELY NO CRIMINALS WILL SEE THEIR GUNS SEIZED BASED ON THE LIBERALS’ LEGISLATION THAT’S COMING FORWARD. BECAUSE IT ACTUALLY GOES AFTER THOSE WHO LEGALLY OWN AND USE THEIR FIREARMS. CAN THE PRIME MINISTER PLEASE TELL US WHY HE DECIDED TO GO AFTER LAW-ABIDING CITIZENS INSTEAD OF GOING AFTER CRIMINALS WHO HAVE GOTTEN THEIR FIREARMS IN AN ILLEGAL MANNER AND THEN USED THEM TO COMMIT CRIME?>>THE HONOURABLE MINISTER, IN 25 SECONDS OR LESS, PLEASE.>>YES, TO BE VERY CLEAR, THE ORDER-IN-COUNCIL ACTUALLY IS TARGETED AT WEAPONS, WEAPONS THAT WERE DESIGNED FOR MILITARY USE, AND IN THEIR DESIGN AND IN THEIR INTENT, TO KILL PEOPLE, THEY HAVE ACTUALLY BEEN USED IN THIS COUNTRY, AT ÉCOLE POLYTECHNIQUE, IN MONCTON, AT A QUEBEC CITY MOSQUE, IN FREDERICTON, AT MAYERTHORPE, AND MOST RECENTLY IN NOVA SCOTIA. THESE WEAPONS HAVE NO PLACE. THEY ARE BEING USED AND HAVE BEEN USED IN CANADA AND AROUND THE WORLD TO COMMIT MASS MURDER, AND IN THE INTEREST OF PUBLIC SAFETY, THAT THE — >>MR. CHAIR?>>WE’LL GO ON TO MS. HARDER. >>THANK YOU. NOW I UNDERSTAND — >>Rosemary: OKAY, WE ARE GOING TO PULL AWAY FROM THIS SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON COVID-19, ALTHOUGH THERE WERE QUESTIONS ON SOME OTHER ISSUES AS WELL, INCLUDING FISHING, AND AS YOU HEARD THERE, THE GOVERNMENT’S ANNOUNCEMENT ON GUN CONTROL LAST FRIDAY. I WILL BRING IN VASSY KAPELOS, THE HOST OF CBC’S “POWER & POLITICS”, AND DAVID COCHRANE, AND THERE WERE ALL SORTS OF TECHNICAL PROBLEMS THAT EVERYBODY EXPERIENCES IN THEIR LIVES, WHICH WAS, YOU KNOW, SORT OF AMUSING. YOU COULD ALSO SEE EVERYBODY’S HOME OFFICES OR HOME BACKGROUNDS. AND I WILL SAY A LITTLE BIT CHIPPY TOO, CHIPPIER THAN LAST WEEK, SO PERHAPS MPs ARE GETTING THE HANDLE OF THIS VIRTUAL COMMITTEE BACK AND FORTH. PRIMARILY WE WERE THERE TO HEAR THE QUESTIONS FROM THE LEADERS TO THE PRIME MINISTER, OBVIOUSLY, BUT WE TOOK A LITTLE BIT LONGER TO GET A SENSE OF SORT OF WHERE PEOPLE’S HEADS ARE AT. VASSY, WHAT PART STOOD OUT FOR YOU THERE?>>Vassy: LOTS OF BACK AND FORTH. THE TECHNICAL ASPECT OF IT, I DID FEEL LIKE WE’RE ALL DOING ZOOM CALLS NOW AND HALF THE TIME I’M ON MUTE BY ACCIDENT AS WELL, BUT CERTAINLY THERE WAS AN INTERESTING SORT OF QUESTION FROM MICHELLE REMPEL THERE ABOUT HOW THE SPEAKER IS NAVIGATING THERE, AROUND THE IDEA OF POSSIBLY USING MUTE TO CUT PEOPLE OFF. WHAT’S DIFFERENT IN THIS VERSUS WHAT WE’RE USED TO SEEING IN QUESTION PERIOD IS ESPECIALLY AROUND THE TIMING OF IT. SO IF THE QUESTION IS 15 SECONDS, THE ANSWER IS SUPPOSED TO BE 15 SECONDS, AND THAT BROUGHT ABOUT SOME OF THE DISAGREEMENT. I DID THINK THERE WERE SOME GOOD EXCHANGES SPECIFICALLY AROUND COVID-19 AND SOME OF THE HOLES IN THE PROGRAMS, FOR EXAMPLE. THE BIG TOPIC OF THE PAST FEW DAYS GENERATED BY ANDREW SCHEER AROUND WHAT THE CERB PROGRAM LOOKS LIKE GOING FORWARD, AND HE’S GETTING SOME CRITICISM FOR WHAT HE BROUGHT ABOUT, BUT HIS QUESTION TO THE PRIME MINISTER TODAY ABOUT WILL IT BE AMENDED, WILL IT ACKNOWLEDGE THAT HE ALLEGES AT LEAST THAT IT’S DISINCENTIVIZING PEOPLE FROM WORKING, AND THE PRIME MINISTER SAID I DO RECOGNIZE THOSE CONCERNS BUT REITERATED WHAT HE SAID IN ANSWERS TO MEDIA QUESTIONS ABOUT IT, IN THAT NOW IS NOT THE TIME HE SEES FOR THOSE KINDS OF CHANGES, BUT THAT MIGHT HAPPEN IN THE FUTURE. NO DETAILS ON WHEN IN THE FUTURE, BUT KIND OVER AN INTERESTING EXCHANGE THERE, AND SOME OTHER QUESTIONS I THOUGHT THAT WERE IMPORTANT FOR A NUMBER OF SENIORS WHO WE HEAR FROM FREQUENTLY ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT THERE IS SOMETHING IN ADDITION TO THE GST CREDIT THAT HAS BEEN ALREADY ANNOUNCED, $400 FOR A SINGLE AND $600 FOR A COUPLE. AND THE PRIME MINISTER FOR A NUMBER OF WEEKS NOW HAS BEEN PROMISING THAT MORE WILL BE COMING, AND THE MINISTER OF SENIORS SAID THE SAME TODAY. I KNOW THAT A NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO WATCH THIS AND WHO ARE CONCERNED AND WHO ARE WORRIED ABOUT THAT HAVE ASKED WHAT THOSE DETAILS WILL BE, SO I KNOW THEY ARE ANXIOUSLY WAITING FOR THOSE, AND NONE YET. >>Rosemary: YEAH, AND THE PRIME MINISTER I THINK SAID COMING DAYS.>>Vassy: SAID THAT A FEW TIMES.>>Rosemary: YEAH, DAVID, ABOUT 30 SECONDS FOR YOU.>>David: JUST A QUICK THING THAT STOOD OUT FOR ME IN THE EXCHANGE BETWEEN ANDREW SCHEER AND JUSTIN TRUDEAU, ANDREW SCHEER DEALING WITH A LOCAL COMPANY BRANDT TRACTOR WHICH PURCHASED NOWHERE TRACKS LAST YEAR, MERGED TWO COMPANIES INTO A BIGGER ONE. INDIVIDUALLY THEY WOULD HAVE QUALIFIED FOR THE WAGE SUBSIDY. TOGETHER THEY APPARENTLY DO NOT. THAT’S AN UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCE OF THE PROGRAM DESIGNED, AND THE PRIME MINISTER SAYING IN HIS ANSWER WE LOOK FORWARD TO YOUR INPUT SO WE CAN TWEAK AND CHANGE THE THINGS GOING FORWARD. SO MAYBE SOME PARTISANSHIP THERE IN THE EXCHANGES, BUT AT LEAST A WILLING TO BE OPEN TO CHANGES FROM THE PRIME MINISTER THERE, AND QUITE FRANKLY THAT’S KIND OF THE WAY THE COUNTRY HAS TO OPERATE RIGHT NOW. >>Rosemary: YEAH, I ACTUALLY THOUGHT THAT ANDREW SCHEER’S QUESTION ABOUT IF YOU’RE MAKING MORE THAN $1,000 A MONTH AND YOU’RE ON CERB, IS THERE ANY WAY TO MAKE THAT A PROGRESSIVE SYSTEM WAS AN INTERESTING IDEA. AGAIN, MAYBE THAT’S SOMETHING THE GOVERNMENT WILL LOOK AT GOING FORWARD. VASSY KAPELOS TONIGHT AT 5 P.M. ON “POWER & POLITICS”, AND DAVID COCHRANE FROM OUR PARLIAMENTARY BUREAU, THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP AS USUAL.>>>OBVIOUSLY THE GOVERNMENT’S PRIMARY ANNOUNCEMENT TODAY AROUND AGRICULTURAL AID, $252 MILLION FOR MANY OF THE SECTORS IN THIS COUNTRY THAT ARE STRUGGLING WITH TOO MUCH OR NOT KNOWING WHAT WILL HAPPEN IN THE FUTURE. I’M ROSEMARY BARTON. WE’LL LEAVE YOU NOW WITH A COMMERCIAL BREAK. OUR COVERAGE CONTINUES HERE ON “CBC NEWS NETWORK” WITH ANDREW NICHOLS. I’LL SEE YOU BACK HERE TOMORROW. ♪ ♪

Author:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *