House of Commons Hansard #159 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tax.

Topics

Member For Surrey North
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Reform

Margaret Bridgman Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have been honoured these past 3.5 years, an honour that is bestowed on very few Canadians.

I wish to thank the citizens of Surrey North for providing me with this opportunity to be their member of Parliament. I am honoured to represent them in the House of Commons. I also want to thank my Reform colleagues for their support and encouragement over the past 3.5 years. It has been a phenomenal growth for all of us and has been interesting to watch.

I thank the other members of Parliament and the Hill staff for their friendliness and co-operation in our deliberations in Ottawa. I extend a special thanks to my staff, my family and friends, especially to Le and Pearl Hale, for their continuing support.

For me the past 3.5 years have been an unforgettable experience, one I will treasure.

Ottawa Youth Orchestra
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Marlene Catterall Ottawa West, ON

Mr. Speaker, earlier this week I had the great privilege to wish bon voyage to the Ottawa Youth Orchestra. Members of the orchestra will be travelling with the Newfoundland Youth Symphony Orchestra to Bristol, England to celebrate the 500th anniversary of John Cabot's historic voyage to the new world. Together with young musicians from Bristol they will be performing at the celebrations.

These young people are Canada's outstanding musicians of the future. They are our cultural ambassadors to the world and we wish them well on this important mission.

Member For Calgary Centre
Statements By Members

April 18th, 1997 / 11:15 a.m.

Reform

Jim Silye Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, I would also like to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to those who have helped me in the constituency, those who have worked hard with me in both offices, Calgary and Ottawa, and government members, a lot of whom showed courtesy and kindness in helping us along.

I agreed with many of your rulings, Mr. Speaker. However, there were a couple that I disagreed with. It was always when you cut me off and would not give me an opportunity to speak a little longer.

Mr. Speaker, it was an honour and a privilege to serve and represent the people of my riding. This House is a great institution. It is worth defending, it is worth fighting for and it is worth keeping together. It is worth keeping all Canadians in Canada. Canada first.

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs.

On the subject of linguistic school boards in Quebec, the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs insists he now supports the Quebec government's request. So far, however, his own government has refused to start the procedure for adopting the constitutional amendment as requested.

Why has the minister, although he says he agrees with the amendment requested by the Quebec National Assembly, not tabled a notice of motion that would make it possible to start the debate in the House? What is he waiting for?

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion President of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we are very pleased to support the amendment we received from the National Assembly which will help modernize the Quebec school system in a way that has found support among all groups in Quebec society.

We received this proposal barely 48 hours ago. We intend to proceed without delay, with due respect for parliamentary procedure.

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, I asked the minister a straightforward question. I imagine when his students asked him questions, he had some answers. Why does he have no answers now that he is in the House? What kind of teacher is he?

I will repeat my question. He decided that hearings would be held. We agreed. However, he must first table a motion in the House. Let us stop being hypocrites, here.

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

I know I am not supposed to say that, but I said it.

Last Monday, they came to ask us when we would be ready to proceed. We said: "The Government of Quebec will proceed Tuesday, we will be ready Wednesday". At the time, they were talking about going ahead on Monday.

The minister knows as well as I do-perhaps he does not because he told us the other day he was not very knowledgeable on the rules of procedure-but in any case, when does he intend to table this notice of motion? Ask the House leader, but when are you going to table your notice of motion?

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, I think the acting opposition House leader forgot that her party and the Reform Party agreed that on Monday we would, I hope, pass the anti-gang bill. Did she change her mind? Does she want to renege on her commitment?

Because of a previous agreement we cannot start with the resolution on Monday, but as we say in Parliament, the hon. member may rest assured that we intend to start consideration of the resolution as soon as possible after Monday.

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Mr. Speaker, with all due respect for the hon. member and his career as

a parliamentarian, first of all, I am not the acting House leader but, as far as I know, the official House leader.

Second, we agreed on an agenda until next Thursday. Does this mean that the House will adjourn on Thursday? Does this mean the government has no intention of tabling the motion? Is that what it means?

In one of those end-of-session deals, we also suggested an approach that would meet both the government's objectives and ours. With the unanimous consent of the House, we asked the government to proceed today with debate on the motion so that Monday, the constitutional amendment could be referred to the Senate and then to the joint committee for 48 hours of hearings, and after that the amendment would come back to the House so we could vote on it before the House adjourns. Is the government prepared to accept this deal in its entirety, yes or no?

Linguistic School Boards
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, the Quebec government waited at least two years to table its own resolution, and the National Assembly took three weeks to adopt the resolution after it was tabled. Why should the hon. member expect us to consider this very important constitutional motion within a shorter time frame than the National Assembly?

Second, the hon. member does not like the word "acting" connected to her position, and I apologize for the fact that I forgot she is leader of the acting official opposition. I may remind her that we are all here in an acting capacity, to a certain extent, and this is especially true of the present official opposition party.

Immigration
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, QC

Mr. Speaker, we now know this is a government delaying tactic. If I were the leader, I would not be too worried about our return.

My question is for the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.

As we speak, a family from Belgium seeking to immigrate to Quebec is in prison. The father, the mother and the three children aged 9, 13 and 14 are at the Laval detention centre. The entire situation is based on a bureaucratic mess arising from misunderstanding, and false and erroneous information.

It appears that Mr. Truzewicz is being held on account of a robbery committed 18 years ago in Belgium. He however has shown that it was not he who committed the robbery, but someone using his car.

Is the minister prepared to examine this matter immediately so that Mr. Truzewicz and his family are accorded fairer treatment? A little understanding, please.

Immigration
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Saint-Henri—Westmount
Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I looked into this matter personally, but the Quebec privacy act precludes my commenting publicly on the facts of this case, and I think we should protect people's privacy as a matter of course.

If I have anything to say to the family today, it is to suggest that they comply with Canada's laws. That is the best approach, if they want to return some day.

Immigration
Oral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Réal Ménard Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, QC

Mr. Speaker, what is not a matter of course is our treating these people as if they were criminals, when they are not. This family is being treated like criminals. The parents and the three children have been thrown into prison.

Until the situation is clarified, could the minister arrange to release these people who are accused of nothing so that we can at least stop aggravating the situation these innocent people are facing?

Immigration
Oral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Saint-Henri—Westmount
Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I would ask the member for Hochelaga-Maisonneuve to stop making political points with a human situation that is difficult for all concerned.

Clearly, everyone must obey Canadian law. I would hope the Bloc members would do the same in this country.