Jobs, Growth and Long-term Prosperity Act (Bill C-38)

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, the cuts to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency are particularly unusual in that there is one portion of the budget, as opposed to being in Bill C-38, where funds will be provided to a number of agencies to deal with the results of Weatherill report, which dealt with listeriosis at the Maple Leaf plant, whereas the Canadian Food Inspection Agency bears the whole brunt of a $50 million cut. At the same time, the budget says that we will take food labels off some food products and tell consumers that they can look on the Internet for information. Coincidentally, the Conservatives are also cutting access to the Internet, the CAP sites in rural areas.

As one mom speaking to another mom, could the member tell me what consumers or moms are supposed to do when the information they might want can be found on the Internet but not on the product?

Ruth Ellen Brosseau: Mr. Speaker, in my rural riding, having access to the Internet does not always happen. It is very expensive. I heard that it is about $150 in some places and it is not even high speed. To say that Canadians have to go online to check what is in their foods is absolutely absurd. It is not right. It is 2012 but we are not there yet. It seems to have a snowball effect. We will have another tragedy and lives will be lost. What is it going to take? How many lives have to be lost?