House of Commons Hansard #167 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

World Consumer Rights Day
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Dennis Mills Broadview—Greenwood, ON

Mr. Speaker, today is World Consumer Rights Day as declared by Consumers International, formerly known as the International Organization of Consumer Unions. Throughout the world, consumers are marking this event by taking part in activities stressing their contribution to the marketplace in our society.

Consumers have a vital role to play in maintaining the wealth and competitiveness in this country. Indeed, over 60 per cent of Canada's GDP is attributed to consumer demand. Consumers' voices should be heard and their rights recognized.

Consumers International has a membership of 185 organizations from 80 nations whose fundamental concerns are to protect the rights of consumers and to promote social justice and fairness in the marketplace. The organization assists consumer groups in developing countries and initiates research action on issues such as pharmaceuticals, pesticides, tobacco and baby foods. It facilitates comparative testing of consumer goods and services-

Mining Industry
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Deshaies Abitibi, QC

Mr. Speaker, by failing to announce measures to stimulate the mining sector, the latest budget brought down by the Minister of Finance is helping to marginalize an industry that generates major spinoffs for a number of regions in Quebec and Canada, for instance in my own riding and in the ridings of many of my colleagues on both sides of the House.

Through its failure to act and its lack of commitment, the federal government is jeopardizing the operations of an industry that is already experiencing problems. In fact, the Mining Association of Canada refers to the budget measures as both harsh and ineffectual and as a threat to the future of the mining sector.

According to the Association des prospecteurs du Québec, Quebec's mining industry may well consider whether its particular sector would not be better served by a legislative framework under which only the Government of Quebec would have the power to intervene.

Big Rock Breweries
Statements By Members

March 15th, 1995 / 2 p.m.

Reform

Jan Brown Calgary Southeast, AB

Mr. Speaker, Albertans are demonstrating that they are willing to support the arts without massive federal assistance. Yesterday the Toronto based Council for Business and the Arts in Canada announced the winners of the 17th annual Business in the Arts awards. I am so pleased to announce that Big Rock Breweries from my riding of Calgary Southeast has received the award for community support.

The shrinking budgets in all areas of our economy demand we seek new, innovative and creative ways of accessing funds, including the cultural sector. Big Rock Breweries from Alberta is leading the way as a private sector supporter for the arts. Last year Big Rock provided over $100,000 to over 40 different arts groups. It views its cultural support as a wise business practice and not as a charitable donation.

Thanks to the support of Big Rock Breweries, groups like the Alberta Theatre Project and the Muttard Public Art Gallery are thriving. Albertans indeed are leading the way in private sector support for the cultural sector. I applaud Big Rock Breweries.

Jamel Twins
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Jag Bhaduria Markham—Whitchurch-Stouffville, ON

Mr. Speaker, I wish to extend my congratulations and appreciation to Mr. S.G.P. Jafry, a prominent member of the South Asian community, and to the Scarborough Muslim Association. Mr. Jafry was the fund raising co-ordinator respon-

sible for raising over $175,000 to offset the costs of surgery and care of the Jamel twins.

These 2-year old children arrived from Pakistan last November to have extremely delicate surgery. Since birth they had been joined at the head. On January 23, 1995 a 23-member team of surgeons at the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children performed over 15 hours of surgery.

There have been only 30 such operations performed worldwide and in 60 per cent of the operations only one of the children survives. Young Hira Jamel survived but her sister Nida did not. On behalf of the House, I wish to convey my condolences to the Jamel family. I am sure everyone is hoping for a full and complete recovery for young Hira Jamel.

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Nick Discepola Vaudreuil, QC

Mr. Speaker, in a speech he made on June 3 at the annual meeting of the Association canadienne-française de l'Ontario, the leader of the Bloc Quebecois said, and I quote: "The agenda proposed by the Bloc Quebecois for today and for the future includes the active solidarity of your communities with francophones in Quebec, within the space we share".

This statement was noteworthy for its understanding and openness, unlike the statement made yesterday by the Bloc's official critic in response to the position taken by the Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne du Canada. After accusing them of interfering, the Bloc member continued her attack with the following statement, and I quote: "Our message to francophones outside Quebec is clear: Mind your own business".

Once again, the Bloc Quebecois has shown it is determined to muzzle anyone who would challenge its separatist plans.

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Guy Arseneault Restigouche—Chaleur, NB

Mr. Speaker, francophone and Acadian communities are unwavering in their belief in a united, progressive and dynamic Canada. I was very happy to hear that the Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne du Canada had asked Quebecers to vote "no" in the referendum on separation.

The members of the Bloc Quebecois are definitely misleading francophone and Acadian communities when they tell them that an independent Quebec would help the francophone community in Canada to better grow and develop.

Furthermore the statement by the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata suggesting that the federal government had bought the francophones and the Acadians is a further insult to our communities.

I would invite the hon. member to publicly apologize for her insensitive remarks to Acadians and all francophones outside Quebec. Canada's francophones and Acadians have every right to speak on the future of our country.

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Réginald Bélair Cochrane—Superior, ON

Mr. Speaker, I was very pleased to hear that the Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne du Canada unequivocally declared that it is in favour of Canadian federalism.

The FCFA is the second organization of its kind to state that it supports the "no" side. Last February, the Société des Acadiennes et Acadiens du Nouveau-Brunswick publicly announced its position, and also begged Quebecers to vote no. These two organizations also believe in a dynamic and progressive Canada which is proud to promote both official languages. This outlook on Canada promotes the growth of the francophone culture as a whole.

The fact that francophone establishments and organizations exist across Canada, be they educational, cultural or financial, proves that the French fact in Quebec and in all of the provinces has persevered and is alive.

The federal government has supported the development and growth of the French language and culture in Canada at all times, not just during the referendum debate. It would be a hard blow to the francophone community elsewhere in Canada if Quebec were to leave the Canadian federation.

Therefore, I hope the referendum will be held as soon as possible so that we can get on with solving the real problems.

Immigration
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Ghislain Lebel Chambly, QC

Mr. Speaker, the repeated attacks on the Immigration and Refugee Board over the last several years have regularly made the headlines. Since the Liberal government took office, these criticisms have become increasingly vitriolic, but the government remains strangely unperturbed.

Again yesterday, two former IRB board members estimated that at least half of their former colleagues lacked the training and expertise necessary for the performance of their duties.

They alleged, as have others before them, that patronage appointments are at the root of the board's problems.

It is urgent that the government get to the bottom of the matter and hold a public inquiry into the Board's operations. The longer this government fails to take action, the more lasting the damage to the board's credibility is likely to be.

Gun Control
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Garry Breitkreuz Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Gerry Parsons, a resident of Air Ronge, Saskatchewan, has courageously given his permission for me to use his letter. He writes:

I appreciate your stand on gun control. I approve of reasonable methods of fighting crime and of taking guns from criminals. I will, I suppose, become a criminal when I refuse to register my hunting guns. Actually, I will probably never use my guns again; I am 75 years old and have a lung disorder which prevents me from doing very much of anything. I have never been charged with anything in my 75 years, it's too bad I have to start now. Thanks for your efforts. It's too bad the justice minister is not as honest as yourself.

Does the justice minister really-

Gun Control
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

The Speaker

Colleagues, even though we are quoting other people in this House sometimes terms which could not be attributed to ourselves, that is to say, questioning the honesty of another member, should not be imposed because someone else said them. I would ask the hon. member to delete any reflection on the honesty of any member of this House and to please finish his statement.

Gun Control
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Garry Breitkreuz Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, I withdraw that final sentence.

Does the justice minister really think Mr. Parsons is a criminal? Does he think because a 75-year old man is going to knowingly fail to register his hunting rifles that he should go to jail for up to 10 years? Is the Liberal government going to build more jails to house the thousands of responsible firearms owners like Mr. Parsons? Or is it going to continue to let the real criminals out on the street to make room for those who fail to register their firearms?

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Eugène Bellemare Carleton—Gloucester, ON

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata, a great champion of francophone rights when it suits her, tap-danced on the backs of francophones outside Quebec yesterday.

She accused the Fédération des communautés francophones et acadienne of interfering with Quebec's affairs by encouraging Quebecers to vote "no" in the upcoming referendum.

Casting doubt on the FCFA's honesty, the hon. member asked if receiving federal subsidies did not help the federation take a federalist stance.

If francophones outside Quebec have survived for centuries, taking their place at every level and in every sphere of activity in Canada, and if there is such a thing as cultural duality in Canada today, it is no thanks to egocentric separatists.

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Raymond Bonin Nickel Belt, ON

Mr. Speaker, I object to the remarks made by Bloc Quebecois members to the effect that for francophones outside Quebec to oppose Quebec's separation constitutes interference. Such remarks clearly show the Bloc's policy of discouraging debate and silencing any opposition to separation. But the Bloc is ignoring an inescapable fact: you cannot silence a majority.

Francophones from across Canada-Quebecers, Acadians, Franco-Saskatchewanians and Franco-Ontarians-have always actively promoted and preserved their language and culture on this continent where we form a very small minority.

Our efforts have paid off and will continue to pay off because federalism and our political system are responsive and encourage the development of francophone communities. A majority of French Canadians recognize the Canadian federal system as a flexible system that promotes our development.

At the opening of this Parliament, the Bloc Quebecois said it was going to-

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

I am sorry to have to interrupt the hon. member. I will now recognize the hon. member for Ottawa-Vanier.

Francophones Outside Quebec
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, in recent months, francophone communities in Acadia and Ontario have welcomed the leader of the Bloc Quebecois, who is eager to spread his party's message and establish lasting links with these communities.

I was there when the Association canadienne-française de l'Ontario received Mr. Bouchard with decorum and civility at its annual meeting last year in Toronto.

Yesterday, the federation of francophone and Acadian communities of Canada said that Canadian federalism was the most

favourable framework for the development of Quebec society and of francophone and Acadian communities.

Instead of admitting that this statement is based on convictions as strong as hers, the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata responded by telling them to mind their own business.

Francophone communities intend to pursue the dialogue initiated by the Bloc Quebecois and, since the future of this country concerns us all, we will mind our own business.