House of Commons Hansard #56 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tobacco.

Topics

Occupational Health And Safety
Statements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, QC

Mr. Speaker, in Canada, two workers die every five working days. On the occasion of Canadian Occupational Health and Safety Week, we must reflect on the situation and try to find innovative solutions to this important problem.

To this end, all workers have a vital role to play. It is a question of collective and individual responsibility, where the risk of accidents and intoxication in the workplace cannot be reduced unless everyone becomes involved.

The federal government must look at what it has done so far and find ways to improve existing legislation.

In 1996, our workers are entitled to working conditions conducive to their health and their safety.

Disarmament
Statements By Members

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, on this, the seventh anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, one cannot help but marvel that the Liberals, who in opposition professed to be outraged, now kneel alongside the multinationals in search of lucrative contracts, kowtowing to the very men who ordered the massacre.

The Liberals are showing the same hypocrisy on disarmament as they are in human rights. Yesterday the Minister of Foreign Affairs announced the opening of the Canadian Disarmament Digest web site on the Internet. It is not surprising that this web site contains no mention of the decision to permit the sale of CF-5 fighter jets to Botswana, for this fact would certainly give readers of the digest a serious case of indigestion.

With Canada alone among the G-7 nations lending financial support to the Three Gorges dam project in China, and about to

provoke a made in Canada arms race in southern Africa, Liberal sanctimony on human rights and disarmament is becoming exceedingly hard to stomach.

Club Roma
Statements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Walt Lastewka St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to congratulate the Club Roma organization, which is located in St. Catharines, on the occasion of its 35th anniversary and the grand opening of the organization's expanded facilities.

For the last 35 years Club Roma has worked in the community to support families, seniors, sports and culture. They have developed wonderful green spaces for sports events for both visitors and residents to enjoy.

The club also supports local non-profit organizations and promotes the rich multicultural heritage of St. Catharines in the Niagara peninsula.

I want to extend congratulations to the Club Roma and Club Roma president Angelo Mirabella on the 35th anniversary and grand opening, and thank the club for its continued contribution to the community of St. Catharines.

Apple Blossom Festival
Statements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

John Murphy Annapolis Valley—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, this past weekend I had the privilege of participating in the 64th annual Apple Blossom Festival in my riding of Annapolis Valley-Hants.

The Apple Blossom Festival is the largest family festival of its kind in Canada. It draws people from far and near and showcases the beauty of the Annapolis valley and the warmth of the people who have made it their home. This year 150,000 people came to enjoy the festivities.

Highlights of this year's events included the crowning of Chérie Marie Riggs from Canning, Nova Scotia as Queen Annapolisa, the annual apple blossom parade, a concert and a magnificent fireworks display to cap of this weekend.

I wish to pass on my congratulations, sincere appreciation and thanks to all those people who made this such a special event.

National Transportation Week
Statements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Robert Bertrand Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, the citizens of Quebec are well aware of the importance of transportation. Much of our history was written by those who travelled by water, rail, road or the airways.

With one of the largest cities in Canada, we understand perfectly the choice of this year's theme for National Transportation Week, "The Urban Link". Just visit Montreal, a busy shipping hub, to see the importance of our urban centres, and how it is essential that they be linked to the rest of the world through a reliable and effective transportation system.

Canada's ports are vital links in the transportation chain. They link Canada's urban economies with each other and with the rest of the world. They are indispensable to the growth and development of urban centres, trade and tourism.

Montreal is also served by one of the most effective public transportation systems in Canada, the metro. On the occasion of National Transportation Week, I ask members of this House to give thought to the great importance of a reliable and effective urban and interurban transportation network.

Volunteerism
Statements By Members

June 4th, 1996 / 1:55 p.m.

Reform

Grant Hill Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, today is my opportunity to pay a public tribute to volunteers in Canada. In particular, I focus on volunteers in the field of health.

My job as the Reform Party health critic has taken me to many Canadians hospitals and clinics. Invariably I have been greeted by cancer clinic volunteers returning their unselfish labour, time and talents to our health system. Many of them are cancer survivors. Some, sadly, have lost loved ones to this serious disease and have been comforted by knowledgeable volunteers themselves. With compassion and love, volunteers sit with lonely patients dying of AIDS, supportive and caring.

On Saturday I watched a telethon conducted by volunteers to raise money for the children's hospital in Calgary. Millions of dollars were raised for the research and treatment of our precious youth.

To volunteers in Canada I simply give to you my heartfelt thanks.

Transportation Week
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Elsie Wayne Saint John, NB

Mr. Speaker, this week marks transportation week. Unfortunately there is not much to celebrate.

Since the Liberal Party took office, Saint John has lost most of its transportation infrastructure. When the Conservative Party was in power, a new air traffic control tower was built. Now the Liberals have closed it and privatized the airport.

When the Conservative Party was in power, it maintained VIA passenger rail service from Saint John to Sherbrooke and built a new VIA terminal in Saint John. The Liberals ended VIA service and the new terminal is now a hockey training centre.

Planes and trains. What next? I guess it is the ports, of course. The government is privatizing ports with the idea of ending grants in lieu of municipal taxes and terminating the ports police, meaning more crime and less money to fight it. As well, ports must pay for navigational aids, dredging and ice breaking. This was all implemented before a full socioeconomic impact study was completed.

Before the government decides to celebrate transportation week, it should look at how it has undermined our essential transportation services. It might realize it has nothing of which to be proud.

Italy
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Anna Terrana Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, June 2 was the 50th anniversary of the proclamation of the Italian Republic. On June 2, 1946, in fact, as a result of a referendum held throughout Italy, the monarchy was replaced by a republic.

This marked the end of a war Italy had lost and which had destroyed one of the most magnificent countries in the world, but also the beginning of a new area for Italy, during which, thanks to a lot of hard work, perseverance and joie de vivre, Italians helped rebuild their country, which has now become one of the seven major world powers.

Italians had to struggle to get out of the depression. Many had to leave Italy to look for a better country which could give them a new beginning, a new life for them and for their families.

Canada was one of those countries. Italians found their promised land here. They were well accepted and were given an opportunity to provide for themselves and for those who depended on them.

Today I would like to pay tribute to all those Italians who dared cross the ocean, and to Canada for giving them a new home. I am sure that my numerous Italian Canadian colleagues sitting in the House with me feel the same pride I feel as a Canadian with roots in Italy. I invite all to join us to celebrate this important day.

The Economy
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Brenda Chamberlain Guelph—Wellington, ON

Mr. Speaker, all Canadians should be concerned about the underground economy. It costs us in lost tax revenues but most important it costs us jobs.

I have worked with representatives of the building trades in offering suggestions to the Minister of Finance to help to reduce the negative effects of the underground economy in Guelph-Wellington and elsewhere in Canada. During our discussions I was told time and time again that we must all work together.

The underground economy is more than not paying taxes. It costs my community and every community in Canada jobs: jobs for those who want to work, jobs that support our families. I urge the government to continue to work with the building trades and others in order to find solutions to this silent killer of jobs.

Minister Of Human Resources Development
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Jean-Paul Marchand Québec-Est, QC

Mr. Speaker, we were all shocked last week by the comments made by the Minister of Human Resources Development concerning the political options open to those who choose to come to this country.

It seems there is a price to pay in return for Canada's hospitality. That price is political conformity. Immigrants must espouse the majority viewpoint. Their democratic rights, guaranteed by the charter of rights and freedoms, do not include the right to choose a sovereignist party.

The outrage provoked by these comments was shared by many federalists in Quebec and I am convinced by all English Canadians who respect fair play and democratic values. But where was the outrage by the Liberal Party in Ottawa? The Prime Minister endorsed the comments of his minister and the press in English Canada was silent on the matter.

I urge all English Canadians concerned about the future of their democracy to take this matter seriously and to call for a public retraction and an apology by the Minister of Human Resources Development.

Human Rights
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Bramalea—Gore—Malton, ON

Mr. Speaker, today marks the 12th anniversary of the senseless and brutal attack by the Indian army on Sikh region's holiest shrine, the Golden Temple at Amritsar and 37 other places of worship. The attack resulted in the deaths of many innocent worshippers.

It would be timely for the new Indian government to apologize for the massacre. More recent examples of human rights abuses include the mysterious disappearance of prominent human rights activists, including Mr. Jaswant Singh Khalra.

I invite colleagues to view the photo exhibition in the Commonwealth Room from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. organized by the following Sikh temples: Dixie Road, Malton, Scarborough, Pape Road, Hamilton, Oakville, Nanak Centre, Rexdale, Weston, Baba Budaji, Guelph, Kitchener, Windsor, London, Lachine and Montreal, Quebec, and the local Ottawa Sikh society.

Canadian Wheat Board
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Myron Thompson Wild Rose, AB

Mr. Speaker, once upon a time there was a Liberal government that broke many promises to western grain producers.

Western grain producers remember Liberals promised a plebiscite on the operation of the Canadian Wheat Board and blatantly broke that promise.

Western grain producers plan, prepare and grow their product on the assumption that they will be supported by the Canadian Wheat Board in selling that product and now know the support is as much of an illusion as promises by this Liberal government.

The Canadian Wheat Board states it cannot find markets when world supplies are at an all time low, prices are at an all time high and demand for top quality wheat and barley is climbing.

Producers want accountability and input into the wheat board, not a continual parade of political hacks and political paybacks for those who have no idea how grain should be sold to a wanting market.

Western grain producers will remember this Liberal government cannot be trusted and they will act accordingly.

Minister Of Human Resources Development
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Osvaldo Nunez Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week, the Minister of Human Resources Development told me to look for another country if I did not like his government's policies and if I kept on promoting Quebec's sovereignty.

Reaction was swift. In addition to the many francophone journalists who were incensed by the minister's remarks, and the personal show of support I received, I also have the support of the Parti Quebecois, the Quebec NDP, the Centre for Research-Action on Race Relations, the Black Coalition of Quebec, the FTQ, the CSN, B'Nai Brith Canada, the Canadian Jewish Congress, the Spanish Canadian Congress, to name just a few.

Far from withdrawing his discriminatory comments on all new Canadians and new Quebecers, the minister added to them.

In such a context, I see no other alternative for him but to resign. As for me, I will keep on striving to find another country, Quebec.

Quebec Premier
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Nick Discepola Vaudreuil, QC

Mr. Speaker, do you know who is the new godfather of Quebec politics? This new francophone Michael Corleone made his first appearance in New York City yesterday with a lot of hoopla.

Unfortunately for movie lovers, it was not for the launching of the fourth film in the prestigious series, but for the casting of Lucien Bouchard, the Pequist leader, in the new role he is taking on.

Comparing himself to the main character in the "Godfather", the Pequist leader tried to convince his audience that it was the Canadian government, not he, who wanted to keep on talking about the Constitution and Quebec sovereignty.

Lucien Bouchard probably chose the best possible character, when he compared himself to the infamous godfather. After all, is he not the one who thought he was making "an offer Canada could not refuse", with his project of sovereignty-association?

Canadians will not be hoodwinked into accepting offers from Don Bouchardo.

Economy Of Quebec
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Eleni Bakopanos Saint-Denis, QC

Mr. Speaker, in a speech yesterday to the Foreign Policy Association in New York, the separatist premier of Quebec reiterated that his priority will be to focus on public finances and economic development in Quebec.

We are happy to see that the pequiste leader has finally seen the light in deciding to look at the economy rather than continuing to waste money and energy to promote a separatist dream.

People in Canada and in Quebec want their governments to work on economic recovery, job creation and putting their fiscal house in order.

If he wants to be taken seriously by investors both on Wall Street and in Quebec and Canada, the separatist leader must put an end to

the separatist threat looming over Quebec. This is a necessary step to economic recovery in Quebec.