HANSARD: Jenny asks government to take action on housing financialization

House of Commons Debate
Oral Questions
May 9th, 2022 / 2:30 p.m.


Jenny Kwan (NDP) Vancouver East, BC

"Mr. Speaker, Canada's housing crisis has been escalated by those using the housing market to make huge profits. The largest 25 financial landlords hold nearly 20% of the country's private rentals. For every one affordable housing unit built, 15 are taken up by investors making money on the backs of Canadians.

It is time to stop treating housing as a stock market. Will the government stop corporate landlords from buying up affordable housing and help non-profits purchase them for Canadians?"


Ahmed Hussen (NDP) Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion

"Mr. Speaker, I agree with the hon. member that we need to build more rental housing in Canada. That is why, as part of the national housing strategy, we have the rental construction financing initiative, a program that has increased so many times over the last number of budgets because we recognize that as a government we have a responsibility to build the next generation of affordable rental units across the country. In addition to that, while we were building more rentals, we introduced the Canada housing benefit, which we are topping up in budget 2022.

We agree that we need to tackle speculation and agree that we need to build more rental housing, and that is exactly what we are doing."



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HANSARD: Foreign Interference and Alleged Reputational Harm to Members of Parliament

Outside this chamber, just yesterday, there were individuals shouting, questioning and jeering about who the traitors may be. Members of Parliament had to walk past these individuals on the members' way to the House to do their work. I believe we must find a way to disclose which MPs are knowingly, intentionally, wittingly or semi-wittingly engaging with foreign states or their proxies to undermine Canada's democratic processes and institutions. I believe this can be done in a way that does not compromise national security.

If there are no consequences for MPs who knowingly help foreign governments act against Canadian interests, we will continue to be an easy target. This will further erode the trust and faith Canadians have in our democratic processes. If allowed to continue, it will further impugn the integrity of the House. Revealing any member of Parliament, former or present, who is a willing participant in foreign interference activities would have the effect of deterring this kind of behaviour. Moreover, it would send a clear message to those foreign states that this cannot continue and that they will not be able to continue to use parliamentarians in this way. This will further reassure the public of the integrity of the House.

I strongly believe that the House should refer the matter to the procedure and House affairs committee. A possible way to deal with the issue would be for committee members to undergo the necessary security screening to examine the unredacted report and look into the allegations about parliamentarians who were “‘witting or semi-witting’ participants in the efforts of foreign states to interfere in our politics.” We could allow the named parliamentarians to be informed and to come before the committee as witnesses; we could then explore options on how to disclose the named parliamentarians without compromising national security or police investigations of the matter.

Are you ready to take action?

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