House of Commons Hansard #144 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was system.

Topics

Diabetes Research
Statements By Members

October 28th, 1998 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Steckle Huron—Bruce, ON

Mr. Speaker, when Ayden Byle arrived today on Parliament Hill he was greeted by supporters for his gruelling efforts to run across Canada to raise funds by way of sponsorship and public donations for research into a cure for diabetes.

Ayden started his journey on June 1 in Stanley Park and will be ending his trek this December 1 in Halifax. Although Ayden has been an active athlete throughout his life, at 24 he is insulin dependent and requires five injections a day.

He hopes his run will generate a greater public awareness of diabetes and truly wishes to become a recognized role model for young children struggling with the physical and psychological aspects of this disease.

I encourage all my hon. colleagues to join me in wishing Ayden our best wishes for his success on his journey across Canada.

Quebec Sheep Industry
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Odina Desrochers Lotbinière, QC

Mr. Speaker, the sheep producers are on Parliament Hill.

They are demonstrating against the arrogant attitude of the Liberal government, which has only mediocre solutions to offer.

While the Minister of Agriculture claims to be concerned about the financial and emotional burden of producers, his government limits its support to a compensatory measure penalizing all the sheep producers who complied from the start with the orders from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Today, the producers are demonstrating outside the House of Commons to send a cry for help, to ask the government to save the Quebec sheep industry. The Minister of Agriculture is very clearly showing that he is completely out of touch with the dramatic situation experienced by our sheep producers.

The problem for Quebec sheep producers is not scrapie, but the slaughter ordered by the federal government, with no real basis to justify that decision.

Canada Post
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gilles Bernier Tobique—Mactaquac, NB

Mr. Speaker, two years ago Canada Post proposed that every resident living in rural New Brunswick change their address. They argued that general delivery had to go and what everyone needed was a unique number and street address.

They sold this idea by promising that the province would implement a 911 emergency system in rural areas, so everyone agreed.

Now two years later we are learning the truth. This new addressing is being paid for by Canada Post customers. Canada Post is telling its customers that if they want to receive mail they must first pay a $34 change of address fee. Businesses and non-profit organizations such as the Volunteer Family Services Food Bank must pay an exorbitant $150 fee because Canada Post unilaterally changed their address.

This is outrageous. It is also wrong to ask seniors on a fixed income to pay this fee.

I call on the minister to extend the waiver period on these fees until rural customers have time to notify everyone of their new address.

Canadian Steel, Chinese Grit
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Sophia Leung Vancouver Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to announce the parliamentary premier of the film Canadian Steel, Chinese Grit on November 4. The documentary is a China-Canada joint production recognizing the role of Chinese workers in building the CPR.

The film reveals the lives of those courageous Chinese pioneers. It shows that their contribution to Canadian political and economic development has left a legacy that deserves a special place in Canadian history.

Agriculture
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

Mr. Speaker, an agricultural economic crisis is sweeping the prairies, but this lawyer-infested government is oblivious to it.

The United States and the European Union value and protect their farmers, but the Canadian agriculture minister has yet to acknowledge the existence of a crisis here. So far his only strategy to save producers from bankruptcy is to point to NISA, even though the average NISA account would not even pay for a farmer's fertilizer and chemical bills, let alone fuel, taxes, freight and so on.

I urge the minister to take his head out of the sand and listen carefully on November 4 when he meets with farm leaders and his provincial counterparts. I am sure he will get an earful. Perhaps then he will be persuaded to take the farm crisis seriously.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, section 66 of the Employment Insurance Act safeguards moneys paid by workers and employers into the fund. It is to be used to make insurance payments to unemployed persons and for no other purpose. Despite this law the Prime Minister wants to grab the surplus from this fund and spend it on other things.

Does the Prime Minister intend to break the law, or does he intend to change the law to permit him to raid the employment insurance fund?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, if I understand correctly, yesterday the Minister of Finance quoted the program of the Reform Party which was advocating that we should use the surplus of the EI fund to reduce the debt. It is not what we have done.

Every year since we have been in government we have reduced the premium, which was supposed to be $3.30 on January 1, 1994. We have reduced it to $2.70 in the last budget.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the finance minister quoted from a 1995 document when the deficit was $38 billion. I remind the Prime Minister this is 1998.

The average worker is paying $350 too much per year into the insurance fund. The average small business is paying $500 per worker too much into the fund, but any surplus still belongs to the people who paid it.

Will the Prime Minister come clean and make his position clear? Does he acknowledge that these funds belong to the workers and the employers? Yes or no.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, in 1995 when the Reform Party was asking us to use the surplus to reduce the debt we were using the surplus to reduce premiums.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister claimed the other day he wanted an open debate on this issue, but he has failed to bring an amendment before the House for debate to change the EI fund.

Instead he is sending his finance minister to meet with the employment insurance commission to try to change the rules behind closed doors.

Will the Prime Minister commit to a debate and a vote in the House on an amendment to the Employment Insurance Act, or will he try to change it behind closed doors through regulations and orders in council?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, everybody should know that to change the law we have to come to the House of Commons. If we decide to change the law, we cannot change the law by the back door; we have to come to the House of Commons. I learned that in April 1963 when I became a member of parliament.

Apec Inquiry
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, in 1963 he did not have the APEC problem either. This on his fingers right now.

I would like to ask the Prime Minister—

Apec Inquiry
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Apec Inquiry
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Edmonton North.

Apec Inquiry
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, it is evident now that the solicitor general, the chairman of the commission and the RCMP are all saying that they think the RCMP may have gone too far in APEC. Who will decide if the Prime Minister went too far?