House of Commons Hansard #164 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was agency.

Topics

2 p.m.

The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada, and we will be led by the hon. member for Surrey Central.

[Editor's Note: Members sang the national anthem]

Leanne Baird
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Tony Valeri Stoney Creek, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is with great pleasure that I stand today to congratulate an outstanding and energetic young lady from my riding of Stoney Creek.

Miss Leanne Baird, who was crowned Miss Canada International in August, has recently returned from the Miss World International competitions in Seychelles.

As Canada's ambassador to this prestigious world competition, this dynamic 21 year old has displayed the highest level of goodwill, sportsmanship and excellence. Leanne carried out her duties with skill and compassion and should be very proud of her accomplishments.

Her leadership qualities were clearly illustrated here in Ottawa when she attended the week long Forum for Young Canadians.

Leanne is an inspiration to people of all ages everywhere and has shown the world what is right with Canada's young people.

I join with all members of this House, Leanne's family and friends and all the residents from the riding of Stoney Creek in wishing Leanne congratulations for a job well done.

2010 Winter Olympics
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Reform

Paul Forseth New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, in 2010 Vancouver and Whistler intend to be hosts to the world's finest Olympic winter athletes.

Vancouver is already world renowned for its attention to culture and enthusiasm to athletics, and Whistler has repeatedly been acclaimed as the number one ski resort in the world. A combination like this is truly second to none.

Yesterday, 72 voting delegates of the Canadian Olympic Association said that British Columbia would be Canada's choice for the competition.

Congratulations go to Arthur Griffiths, head of the Vancouver-Whistler bid society, and to the many athletes and organizers who have contributed endless time and energy in making the bid successful.

Congratulations should also go to Calgary and Quebec City which both presented top notch bids.

British Columbians look forward to the opportunity of showcasing Canada's most spectacular province to the members of the IOC, establishing that B.C. is certainly the gateway to the world.

Jamie Hunter
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, each year I co-sponsor an essay contest for students in my riding of Mississauga South. This year's topic was “The famous Canadian I would like to meet”.

The winning entry was submitted by Miss Jamie Hunter, a grade 7 student at Homelands Public School. The essay caught my attention because it was about an outstanding Canadian, Cassie Campbell, who has become a role model and an inspiration to Jamie.

Cassie loved hockey and despite significant hurdles she became a member of the Canadian National Women's Hockey team, representing Canada in national and world championships and at the Olympics. Cassie Campbell also obtained a university degree, did some modelling, coaches and runs hockey camps, authored a book and is a spokesperson for a program to prevent young women from smoking.

Jamie Hunter is in Ottawa today to meet the Prime Minister and I want to thank her for sharing her story about her famous Canadian role model.

When I encounter motivated young people like Jamie I am reminded just how important it is for all Canadians who touch the lives of children to provide the leadership, support and guidance that our youth will need to become the leaders of tomorrow.

International Day For The Abolition Of Slavery
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Augustine Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, today is the international day recognizing the abolition of slavery. It is a day that is commemorated around the world by countries whose citizens were victims of the slave trade.

The International Day for the Abolition of Slavery calls upon each and every one of us to pause, to reflect and to take stock of the vestiges of slavery and its implications for universal human rights.

This year is the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights and we must not forget the human rights violations that slavery fostered over 200 years ago.

I call upon my colleagues from all sides of the House to join me and thousands of African Canadians in recognizing this day and the history attached to it.

Canadian Farmers
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Paradis Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, I want to recognize today farmers across Canada and all those in Brome—Missisquoi. They represent a vital link in the agri-food chain and contribute to a complex system involving suppliers, carriers, processors, grocers and restaurateurs.

Despite our farmers' productivity, global circumstances beyond their control have them facing a financial crisis. Economic problems in Asia had a ripple effect worldwide, causing a decline in sales. Great crops are usually good news for farmers, but not this year. The loss of markets and inventory surpluses, combined with the effects of American and European subsidies, have caused a severe economic crisis in Canadian agriculture.

I sit on the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food and we have been listening to farmers and to their suggestions as to how this crisis might be resolved. I am confident we can respond to them quickly and adequately.

Let us put our heart where our mouth is.

Employment Insurance Premiums
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Reform

Diane Ablonczy Calgary—Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, talk like Santa, act like Scrooge. That is the finance minister. With great fanfare he announces a drop in employment insurance premiums, but hides the fact that he really owes workers five times more than he is paying back to them.

The chief actuary of the employment insurance program says that the finance minister owes each worker $350. So why is Scrooge paying back only one-sixth of what he has been overcharging workers? It is no wonder the finance minister has to talk so much about an uncertain environment. He was the one who helped create it with illegal taxes on Canadian families.

This Christmas there will be a hole in each worker's wallet where $300 ought to be for Tiny Tim. Even Scrooge would hang his head in shame.

Canadian Farmers
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

John Harvard Charleswood—Assiniboine, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government has been working hard to find a response to the farm income crisis.

Nationally, farm income is declining. Commodities taking the deepest dive are grains and hogs. In Manitoba and Saskatchewan, where concentration is particularly intense, farm income is expected to drop about 40% and 70% respectively. Although the impact is most severe on the prairies, wherever these crops are produced farmers are hurting.

The problems that began in Asia have caused a multiplier effect around the globe. Customers no longer have the funds to buy, supply is increasing and prices are falling into the basement. European and American subsidies are compounding the problem.

In my home province of Manitoba farmers tell me that the need for assistance is urgent and the time to act is now. I urge all members—

Canadian Farmers
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Cambridge.

Women's Crisis Services Of Cambridge
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Janko Peric Cambridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Women's Crisis Services of Cambridge and North Dumfries, formerly known as the Family Crisis Shelter of Cambridge, was recently awarded $5,000 from the Donner Canadian Foundation Awards for Excellence in the delivery of social services.

This national award is a testament to the innovation and high quality of service provided to women and children in our community who are victims of abuse. The Women's Crisis Services provides a safe environment for those escaping violence in the home, as well as counselling, legal advocacy, public education, peer support and crisis intervention programs.

I congratulate all the volunteers and staff for their ongoing dedication and achievements. I wish them continued success under the new name.

The Senate Of Canada
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Rob Anders Calgary West, AB

Mr. Speaker, on Monday this House gave a standing ovation to Mr. Max Bacaus, an elected senator.

When opposition members stood to applaud, we did so in support of a triple E Senate. Liberals on the front benches jeered despite the fact that the Prime Minister has promised an elected, equal and effective Senate and has failed to deliver at every opportuntiy.

Alberta pays for 10 senators, gets only six and receives the services of none.

On October 19 of this year Alberta took steps to change that by electing two senators. Here today are two elected senators from Alberta who received the support of 593,000 voters, the largest number of votes cast for any parliamentarian in Canadian history.

Canadians deserve democratic representation in their government. The election of senators in Alberta is only the beginning.

Hockey Night In Ottawa
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Hec Clouthier Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, ON

Mr. Speaker, the action was fast and furious as Team Liberal faced off against the opposition last night in an historic hockey game. When the ice chips settled, Team Liberal skated away as the political champions of Canada's national pastime.

Although the member for Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough promised to pepper Team Liberal with shots, our rotund member from Bourassa stood on his head in the net as he kept a low goal deficit. Our veteran member from Nickel Belt was a shining, scintillating star for the winning team. Also accolades go to our member from Nunavut. She was as graceful as a gazelle on skates. Our member for Brampton Centre offered vocal and moral support as our door manager.

Team Liberal was triumphant despite the opposition attack led by the terrible trio of the members from Medicine Hat, Prince George—Peace River and Surrey North.

The opposition did suffer a hold-out by the Bloc Quebecois players, who refused to play unless there were winning conditions.

Hockey Night In Ottawa
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Québec.

Employment Insurance
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the ministers responsible for the growth in poverty have just announced they intend to continue fleecing employees, by making a nickel and dime cut in EI contribution rates at a time when the program is covering only four out of every ten unemployed workers.

The Minister of Human Resources Development can say that this cut will put $1.1 billion back into the pockets of Canadians, but what he is not saying and we ought to know is that, at the same time, he is discreetly taking approximately $5 billion out of their other pockets.

How can the Minister of Human Resources Development let the Minister of Finance help himself with both hands to a fund his government does not pay a penny into, instead of recognizing that the surpluses in the unemployment insurance fund belong to those who pay contributions and must be paid back to them, by substantially lowering contribution rates and improving the employment insurance plan?

Transport Canada
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Angela Vautour Beauséjour—Petitcodiac, NB

Mr. Speaker, the auditor general has revealed that Transport Canada's performance in managing and administering its highway investment shows many weaknesses.

This is nothing for New Brunswickers. New Brunswickers know about Transport Canada's mismanagement of money. Starting in January they will have to pay tolls to drive on a highway that was built as part of a federal-provincial agreement signed by former transport minister Doug Young who now heads the private company putting up tolls.

By 2001 it will cost cars up to $14 and trucks $45 for a round trip.

The now transport minister has said that measures will be taken to forbid tolls on federally funded highways in the future. However, for this deal he has chosen to protect Doug Young's interests instead of standing up for Atlantic Canadians.

New Brunswickers will have to pay tolls to drive to work, to go to a doctor or to visit friends and family. The people driving to and from Atlantic Canada will have to pay those tolls also. Atlantic Canadians will also see an increase in the price of goods.