House of Commons Hansard #161 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was billion.

Topics

Justice
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Reform

Randy White Fraser Valley West, BC

Mr. Speaker, there is a great answer. He is going to take it under advisement a few days before they drop the writ. Great.

This is about the rights of criminals versus the rights of victims and law-abiding Canadian citizens. That is what this is about.

Criminals can now vote. They can play golf at Ferndale prison. They get Canada pension, old age security, the guaranteed income supplement, overtime pay and they can sue the crown at taxpayer expense.

Why do victims have to fight this Liberal government so hard for rights and these Liberals trip over themselves to cater to criminals?

Justice
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Vaudreuil
Québec

Liberal

Nick Discepola Parliamentary Secretary to Solicitor General of Canada

If they want a response, Mr. Speaker, I think our record on victims rights speaks for itself. This government has acted time and time again to protect the rights of victims

and time and time again it was that party which voted against every single piece of legislation.

Young Canada Works
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Stéphan Tremblay Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Canadian Heritage.

Heritage Canada is at it again. For the second year in a row, young people applying for jobs in Heritage Canada's Young Canada Works Program will have to show that they are federalists. In order to get a job with Heritage Canada, young people, whom the department will transform into ambassadors for Canada, must write a 250 word essay telling their future employer what Canada means to them.

The Bloc Quebecois takes exception to the government using young people to further its political ideology. How can young francophones in Quebec hope for a job with Heritage Canada when it is estimated that close to 75 per cent of them said yes to Quebec in the last referendum?

Young Canada Works
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Hamilton East
Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, when you work for Heritage Canada, it is obvious that you must also belong to Canada.

Young Canada Works
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Stéphan Tremblay Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Canadian Heritage has obviously lost all common sense. In order to obtain a summer job with Heritage Canada, young Quebecers and Canadians will have to show that they believe in and are prepared to promote Canadian unity.

Does the representative of the Prime Minister share this discriminatory opinion, yes or no?

Young Canada Works
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Hamilton East
Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I find it incredible that the member should question this. If we are looking for summer ambassadors for Canada, there is nothing unusual in asking them to write a 250 word essay on "what Canada means to me".

Heritage Canada's program is Young Canada Works, and when we look for ambassadors for Canada, they should naturally have some knowledge of their country, which is still called Canada.

Flooding
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Glen McKinnon Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the minister responsible for emergency planning.

For the past week we have watched in distress as flood waters have destroyed property and entire communities in both Canada and the United States. In Manitoba, as the Red River rises, people are afraid that their homes will be destroyed and their communities devastated.

Can the minister assure Manitobans that he realizes the magnitude of this potential disaster and that our government is prepared to help both technically and financially in dealing with this potentially serious situation?

Flooding
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Acadie—Bathurst
New Brunswick

Liberal

Douglas Young Minister of National Defence and Minister of Veterans Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I am sure that every member of the House understands the concerns of the people of Manitoba with respect to the potential disaster impending there.

Obviously there is a very broad arrangement, led by the Government of Manitoba, which includes the municipalities and a wide array of Government of Canada departments, including the Department of National Defence.

I want to say to the hon. member and to the people who obviously are very apprehensive about impending events in that part of the country that the Government of Canada will do everything it can. The Department of National Defence will do everything it can. As we know, the Government of Manitoba will do everything it can. The municipalities directly affected will participate in every way they can to avoid what appears to be an enormous natural disaster which will take place in a very short time.

However, with respect to the inevitable, the cost, the dislocation and the disruption that will occur, the Government of Canada is absolutely committed, as I have indicated to my colleague in the Government of Manitoba today, to treating Manitobans equitably. We will give them every opportunity to respond to the problems they are faced with in a flexible way. We guarantee that the people of Manitoba will be treated as well or better than anybody who has ever been faced with this kind of disaster in Canada.

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Reform

Sharon Hayes Port Moody—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, preventive medicine is an alternative that Canadians are

increasingly coming to rely on in their fight to prevent disease. A recent poll indicates a significant increase in Canadians' use of herbal and alternative therapies as a key part of their health care regimen.

However, it appears that the health protection branch has other ideas. Canadians are witnessing the spectacle of health food stores being raided, products confiscated and stopped at borders and consumers denied access to products they have relied on for decades. At a time of soaring health care costs and limited resources, Canadians must be allowed freedom of choice.

My question is for the Minister of Health. Will he impose an immediate moratorium on these activities until a full public review can be undertaken?

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence
Ontario

Liberal

Joe Volpe Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the only real and effective choice is one that ensures that the product is safe and effective.

The mandate of Health Canada is to ensure that every product on the market, on the shelves, has already received the stamp of approval from Health Canada that the product fulfils the medicinal claims listed on the items.

I am sure that the member opposite would agree that this is a basic responsibility that the government must fulfil.

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Reform

Sharon Hayes Port Moody—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, the government's health care cuts make Canadians increasingly aware of the need to take preventive measures to remain healthy. Natural health products provide an important tool to help in that fight.

What will the minister do to keep both his bureaucrats and natural health products on the shelf?

Health Care
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Eglinton—Lawrence
Ontario

Liberal

Joe Volpe Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the member will be reassured to know that Health Canada already has a consultative group that includes practitioners who distribute and who are expert in the consumption of some of the remedies she is suggesting. Health Canada, over the course of every year, approves for distribution, for sale and consumption some 100 such items.

She should feel secure that Health Canada is up on all the issues that relate to herbal medicine and that the appropriate steps have been taken to ensure that Canadians can have the confidence that all those items are safe and effective.

Tran Trieu Quan
Oral Question Period

April 22nd, 1997 / 2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Beauport—Montmorency—Orléans, QC

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

Last week, Canada refused to co-sponsor a resolution before the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva, condemning the appalling state of human rights in China. To protect its prized and much criticized contracts, the Liberal government was being less than forthright as it tried to save face by announcing a series of bilateral measures to discuss the human rights situation in China. This tactic, which was tried in Vietnam in the case of Canadian citizen Tran Trieu Quan, has achieved absolutely nothing in the past four years.

Now that this government has made a clear choice between promoting trade relations and defending human rights, how does the minister intend to proceed to obtain from the Vietnamese government the immediate release of Canadian citizen Tran Trieu Quan?

Tran Trieu Quan
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Winnipeg South Centre
Manitoba

Liberal

Lloyd Axworthy Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member really mixed up two different issues. The first has to do with our position on China.

As I have already explained to the House, the decision was not ours. It was taken by members of the European Union. They have already decided not to support the resolution. As a result, we were able to gain a number of very important bilateral agreements to pursue human rights. The hon. member would be well advised to look at the opportunities that provides.

We are working very closely with the Government of Vietnam. We have met with the family many times. We will continue our representations. We can hope that there can be a resolution to this very soon. I hope this afternoon to meet with the Archbishop of Quebec, the family and a number of students in Quebec who have brought forward a petition which demonstrates widespread support.

We want to continue working with the people who are deeply committed. I am sure if we work together in solidarity, we will find a very effective and very quick solution.

Tran Trieu Quan
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Beauport—Montmorency—Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, I may remind the minister that everyone in Quebec stands behind Tran Trieu Quan.

Since Canada has turned its back on its traditional human rights policy, would the minister agree that the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, ratified by Vietnam in 1982, authorizes us to impose sanctions and to lodge an international claim against Vietnam which is violating the rights of Mr. Tran?