House of Commons Hansard #94 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was research.

Topics

New Reproductive Technologies
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Cape Breton—East Richmond
Nova Scotia

Liberal

David Dingwall Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I believe hon. members opposite were the first political party to call on me, as the minister responsible for health, to move with dispatch as it relates to new reproductive technologies. We have done that.

We have come forward with a bill that will go to committee. It will be examined. Hearings will take place. If improvements are necessary, they will be made.

It is certainly not the intention of the government or the administration to have any overlap and duplication. Where it is pointed out, we will act accordingly.

Endangered Species
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Len Taylor The Battlefords—Meadow Lake, SK

Mr. Speaker, earlier today to the media and in question period, the Minister of the Environment talked in glowing terms about his plan to protect endangered species and habitat in Canada. In doing so he has conceded that the co-operation of the provinces is critical to making this process truly effective.

As far as federal lands are concerned, is the minister prepared to do a full habitat inventory for species currently on the list? As far as provincial co-operation is concerned, can the minister tell us what enforcement powers he has at his disposal if any or all provincial governments fail to include habitat protection within their own legislative framework?

Endangered Species
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

York West
Ontario

Liberal

Sergio Marchi Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, for too many years in this country when it has come to endangered species the time clock on the species has ticked while federal and provincial governments have bickered over the rock that the bird lands on. We argue: Is it your rock, is it my rock and what do we do about it?

Instead of continuing in that old, frustrating and losing manner the government decided to start on the other end. We started with the endangered species.

We will take responsibility on federal lands. We will take responsibility for co-ordinating interprovincial species. We will take responsibility for international cross-border species. The

provinces and the territories have signed on to a national accord that they will take their proper responsibilities.

If we do that, it is not a question of patting the federal or provincial governments on the back, the endangered species will be the winners. That is the object of the exercise.

Multiculturalism
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Graham Rosedale, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Secretary of State for Multiculturalism and the Status of Women.

The minister recently made an announcement regarding the government's race relations and multiculturalism program. Could she please tell the House why she made the announcement now and whether the results of the program review reflect the recommendations of a report which called for the elimination of funding for ethnocultural groups?

Multiculturalism
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Vancouver Centre
B.C.

Liberal

Hedy Fry Secretary of State (Multiculturalism)(Status of Women)

Mr. Speaker, that is an excellent question.

I would like to state that first and foremost, the Race Relations Foundation is in keeping with a red book promise which we made. Second, multiculturalism is not about ethnocultural organizations. Multiculturalism is about how all the peoples of Canada-the aboriginal people, the French, the English and people who have come here from every corner of the globe-learn to live together in mutual respect with social justice and with compassion.

We will continue to support that and we will continue to fund whatever groups and institutions encourage that.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

Colleagues, I would like to draw to your attention the presence in the gallery of Mr. Sean Doherty, leader of the delegation of the Public Accounts of the Dail of the Irish Parliament. He is accompanied by members of Parliament and officers.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Business Of The House
Oral Question Period

October 31st, 1996 / 3 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like the government to tell us what is on the legislative agenda for the coming week.

Business Of The House
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, November 1, and next Thursday, November 7, the House shall consider the address debate, the concluding portion of the debate on the speech from the throne.

On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we will consider legislation beginning with Bill C-41, the divorce and child support bill. When this is complete, we will return to the list on which we have been working, namely: Bill C-34, the agricultural penalties legislation; Bill C-47, the reproductive technologies bill; Bill C-62, the Fisheries Act amendments; Bill C-59, the water transportation bill; Bills C-39 and C-40, the York Factory and Nelson House agreements bills; and finally Bill C-46, the Criminal Code amendments.

This completes my weekly business statement.

Business Of The House
Oral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

My colleagues, we will have statements now with regard to the Remembrance Day ceremonies. I recognize the hon. minister of veterans affairs.

Veterans Week
Oral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Cardigan
P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Secretary of State (Veterans)(Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise in my place today as November 11 approaches to pay tribute to Canadians who gave their lives for their country in two world wars, the Korean war and in peacekeeping operations around the world. Their sacrifice protected the democracy Canadians cherish today.

On Monday, November 11 we will pause for a minute of silence to mourn the loss of these Canadians. At cenotaphs from one end of the country to the other and in cemeteries around the world where Canadians lie, we will remember them. But today as I remind this House of the coming ceremonies to mark the sacrifice of those who never returned from war, I would also like to remind our colleagues that in the coming week we are also going to pay tribute to the people who did come home.

The Prime Minister has declared the week of November 3 to 11 as veterans week. It is an occasion when people across the country can reflect upon the achievements and sacrifice of Canadians during wartime and in peacekeeping operations around the world.

Canadian veterans have served with distinction, winning respect and gratitude. I would remind this House that these Canadians were drawn from the entire country. They built the foundations of our national spirit.

Hon. members will recall that last year Canadians celebrated veterans week as part of the Canada Remembers program which marked the 50th anniversary of the end of the second world war. Veterans Affairs Canada was very pleased to help co-ordinate many of the events which paid tribute to our veterans. I know many

individual Canadian men and women enjoyed the opportunity to re-create emotions, both happy and sad, from their youth.

Perhaps most important of all, the Canada Remembers celebrations last year gave many of today's young Canadians their first history lesson about what our country accomplished during the war. It gave an opportunity for one generation to speak to another. Young Canadians have grown up without the spectre of war casting its chill over their future. They could be excused for taking our cherished freedom for granted.

I hope that during this year's veterans week we will once again create the bond between the generations that will invite an older generation to tell its stories to a younger generation. I hope too that teachers across the country will use this week to talk to students about Canada's proud history and the important role we played on the international stage during these years.

Finally, I hope that Canadians of all ages will take time to honour those who gave so much of themselves, both overseas and on the home front, to bring Canada through those trying times.

I invite all members of this House to help us honour Canada's veterans during veterans week and indeed all year long.

Veterans Week
Oral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Bloc

Jean H. Leroux Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise in this House today, in my capacity as the Bloc Quebecois critic for veterans affairs, to acknowledge, as is tradition, Remembrance Day and Veterans' Week, which will run from November 3 to November 11.

The least we can do is to set some time aside every year to remember the men and women who served in the two world wars and in the Korean conflict.

From the bottom of our hearts, we thank all those who served at the front, the sailors and airmen from all regions of Canada, the members of the merchant navy, the nurses, and all the men and women who risked or gave their lives to overcome tyranny.

Need we remind the House that over 100,000 young Canadians and Quebecers died in the two world wars, while hundreds of others were killed in Korea and the various peacekeeping missions?

Unfortunately, many bloody conflicts are still raging around the globe. I cannot help but think about the serious consequences of the conflict between the Tutsi rebels and the Zairian army. Over 1 million refugees are caught in the middle. Yet, the international community seems totally incapable of mobilizing and intervening between the warring factions. Worst of all, the humanitarian agencies had to leave the area immediately. The consequences are extremely serious. We may be powerless to prevent another disaster for humanity.

If I mention the tragedy unfolding in Zaire, it is because I am also thinking of all those who assume the responsibility for maintaining peace in the world, particularly the Canadian peacekeepers. As you know, more than 2,000 Canadian peacekeepers are currently deployed overseas in places like Bosnia and Haiti.

Today we remember the sacrifices made by those to whom we owe this legacy of freedom and democracy, and by all those who are now working for peace.

The extensive human losses and the horrible suffering endured by all the people caught in these endless wars defy understanding. What can we say to the widows and orphans, the brothers and sisters who lost loved ones forever?

All these brave people fought, all these lives were sacrificed so there would be no more wars. So that future generations would be spared all this pain and suffering.

Again, I join with all my colleagues in the Bloc Quebecois in expressing our sincere gratitude to all those who gave their lives and, of course, to all the survivors of these tragedies. Let us not forget there are still many survivors who deserve all our admiration and support.

In this regard, I condemn this government's lack of consideration for the members of the merchant marine. Their concerns must be considered a priority. We must make every effort to ensure that this government pays due attention to the views of merchant marine veterans and holds proper consultations with the coalition representing them.

Having said that, I will conclude my speech by saying how much the Bloc Quebecois wants to honour the memory of our veterans and pay them a fitting tribute.

Veterans Week
Oral Question Period

3:10 p.m.

Reform

Jack Frazer Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Madam Speaker, six Books of Remembrance lie in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower, each page bearing the names of those who died carrying the torch of freedom.

Over 114,000 Canadians were killed during the course of World War I and World War II and the Korean war. Many more returned battered in body and spirit.

The peace, security and freedom you and I enjoy comes as a result of the blood they shed and the courage and determination they devoted to casting aside the tide of oppression. Their fate, our future; what a very great price to pay, what a very great debt to owe.

The Memorial Chapel bears the inscription: "They are too near to be great but our children shall understand when and how our fate was changed and by whose hand".

Last fall during the Far East pilgrimage, I stood with youth delegates before a marker on a grave in the Commonwealth Cemetery in Yokohama, bearing the name of a young man who at age 19 died as a prisoner of war. He had been captured at Hong

Kong three years prior at age 16. The impact this marker left on our minds and hearts will never be forgotten.

It also took me to my stepfather, Stanley Edward Akrigg, who died in January at age 96. He was a big boy and he joined the Canadian army in 1914 at the age of 15. At the age of 17 he won the military medal and fought in the battles of Vimy Ridge, the Somme and Passchendaele. Two days before his 19th birthday, in October 1918, he lost his brother, who served in the same regiment, to a German artillery shell.

It also brought to mind my cousin, Ronald Loughton Movold, who was a tail gunner in a Lancaster bomber. He lost his life in Europe in April 1944.

The torch of remembrance must pass to those too young to have known the Canadian warriors who were too young to die. The poppies we wear are a time honoured symbol of their sacrifice. They were inspired by the poem written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae after surviving 12 days of heavy bombardment in his Belgian bunker on May 3, 1915. Through the shelling he saw a cemetery across the road filled with red poppies. Tearing a page from his diary, he wrote the poem "In Flanders Fields". We are responsible to remember their gallant contributions so their sacrifice will not have been in vain and to ensure that we preserve the precious rights and freedoms for which they died.

We must also remember the tens of thousands of Canadians who have served in more than 30 individual missions over 36 years of Canadian peacekeeping. More than 100 Canadian forces personnel have lost their lives and hundreds more have been wounded during peacekeeping tours. They too must be remembered.

Our gulf war veterans were exposed to the intensity and volatility of modern day warfare during their fight to preserve the delicately balanced stability in the Middle East. During the war, many Canadians witnessed on their television screens a blaze of oil fires and exploding warheads. In service to our country and the global community, Canadian lives were scarred. Here too we find personal tragedies and sacrifice.

Veterans week, November 3 to 11, is a time to pause, remember and accept our heroes' challenge: "Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you from failing hands we throw the torch; be yours to hold it high. If ye break faith with us who die we shall not sleep, though poppies grow in Flanders Fields".

Veterans Week
Oral Question Period

3:15 p.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Madam Speaker, I join with my colleagues in the New Democratic Party caucus today in the House of Commons to pay tribute to Canadian veterans. We pay tribute particularly to those who made the supreme sacrifice: those men and women in the army, the navy, the air force and the merchant navy who gave their lives in World War I and World War II; those who died in the Korean war; those who have died in the course of peacekeeping operations.

Fortunately no one died in the Gulf war but as the member for Saanich-Gulf Islands indicated, there is evidence that people who served in the Gulf war have a variety of lasting effects which need to be acknowledged by the government.

That is why when we gather on Remembrance Day we pay tribute not just to those who died but also to those who came back, as the legion says in one of its creeds, after having given the best years of their lives.

A long time ago, just before my 20th birthday I was cycling with a friend through Holland. We came to a big monument. We had stopped at the Canadian war cemetery at Bergen op Zoom. We went for a walk through the beautiful place which has been kept wonderfully by the Dutch all these years. We realized what we had stumbled upon. We spent a couple of hours there because we were struck with the row upon row upon row of Canadians who were buried there. It struck me that at the time of their deaths they were about the same age as I was then, 19.

It was not until 10 years later that I had an occasion to visit the cemetery at Adagem in Belgium and another 10 years later I visited Vimy. The older I get, the more it is impressed upon me how young these people were, giving more meaning to the passage which is used at every Remembrance Day service: "They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old. Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn". If anyone has ever lost a relative not necessarily in war but to an accident at a young age, we all know what that means. Those people are forever youthful in our imaginations. They grow not old.

I was struck, as I always am, by images of those cemeteries, by the images of the Menin gate outside the village of Ypres where the names of 35,000 Commonwealth soldiers are inscribed who have no known grave. Every week the people of that town gather to do a last post ceremony at the Menin gate. They have been doing that since 1918 with the exception of the years when the town was captured during the second world war.

I say this because in Europe, whether it is in Holland, or at the Menin gate or elsewhere, people appreciate what Canadians and other Commonwealth and allied soldiers gave at that time. I think we in Canada could do no less. I often feel that we do not appreciate to the extent that we should what our veterans gave.

I hope this Remembrance Day and in Remembrance Days to come that future generations will be lucky as my generation was. My grandfather served in the first world war, my father in the second world war, but my generation was not called to war. I hope

that will continue to be said about my son's generation and my grandson's generation. We all should devote ourselves to that goal.

Veterans Week
Oral Question Period

3:20 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Elsie Wayne Saint John, NB

Madam Speaker, on behalf of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada, I wish to pay tribute to the many Canadians who sacrificed so much for the peace and freedom we enjoy today.

The first world war ended at 11 a.m. on November 11, 1918 and the devastation was felt deeply. In just a few short years the lives of 70,000 Canadians were lost and twice as many were wounded in the name of peace. I know because my uncle served overseas and was wounded very badly at that time.

The second world war, a horrifying episode in history, claimed the lives of 45,000 Canadians and many thousands more were hurt. Many did come back home and we thank God for that.

Canadians also gave their lives during the Korean war and our armed forces answered when the United Nations called for action to put an end to Iraqi aggression against Kuwait.

Two of my brothers served in the second world war. They were in Belgium, Holland and France. It was not easy. It was not easy for my mother who made all of those fruitcakes to send over to them, who made all of their little pillows. She sent over their socks that she knitted. She cried as she waited for the mail to come, hoping and praying that they would come home safely. Luckily, both of them did.

Canadians have never backed down or run away in the face of aggression. Canadians know that to ensure world peace, the laws that govern relationships among nations must be respected and enforced. That is why we have almost 2,000 members of the Canadian military serving throughout the world on peace and humanitarian operations.

This year marks the 51st anniversary of the end of the second world war. On Remembrance Day, November 11, I would ask everyone to make a commitment to honour the sacrifices made by so many Canadians and to honour all of those who returned.

Last year in Holland during the VE Day celebrations, Canadian veterans were treated like the heroes they are for their role in the liberation of that country. Here at home we must never forget the risks these heroes took and the sacrifices they made so we can enjoy the country, the peace and the freedom we have today. A freedom we often take for granted for which a very high price was paid.

Out of thankfulness, respect and gratefulness, we must work harder than ever to preserve and protect the programs vital to the

well-being of so many veterans. I say that because many of our veterans come to see me because they are worried about the cuts in the last post fund. We must look after our merchant navy vets as well.

Today I say thank you to those who fought for the freedoms that we enjoy. I say thank you to those who continue to wear the uniform of Canada for their extraordinary service to us.

Let us never forget the high price that was paid so that we can live in peace, individually and collectively. We must be vigilant about maintaining that peace.