House of Commons Hansard #90 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was health.

Topics

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his question.

Although it is clear that this morning's figures are not good, they do not show that the situation has worsened. On the contrary, there has been a small improvement, a very slight one, in the number of participants.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Papineau—Saint-Denis, QC

I admit it is very little, but this month's figures must not be used to claim that the situation has worsened. That is false.

As I have said in this House on a number of occasions, this participation rate is of concern to us and we are in the process of examining it very closely, in order to ensure that our system is properly serving the people of Canada.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, in 1993, when the government assumed power, 65% of the unemployed were drawing benefits. In 1995, 52% were, and now the figure is under 41%. This cannot go on. The minister must get moving.

Does the minister commit to proposing concrete solutions to this problem before the summer, yes or no?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I am saying very clearly that we are concerned about this situation.

On that side, they like to say that the problem is easy to fix and that this figure is essentially linked to the eligibility criteria. I say that there are also changes in labour market conditions. The economy has also undergone changes. Seen overall, the situation is rather more complex and we will not make decisions blindly, as the opposition would like us to.

Young Offenders Act
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, we have asked the justice minister literally dozens of times when she is going to make serious changes to the Young Offenders Act. She just giggles and keeps repeating “in a timely fashion”. Timely? It has been 10 months since the minister made the announcement and now her officials tell us it is going to be at least another six months before something happens. The minister is an utter failure. Why does she not admit she is not up to the job?

Young Offenders Act
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I guess I can do no better than repeat that which I said in this House before. We on this side of the House are working very hard to complete the government's response to the standing committee report. As I have said before, that response will be tabled in this House in a timely fashion.

Young Offenders Act
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, victims of crime and young people themselves are saying that it is just not good enough to repeat “in a timely fashion” and “let me be clear”.

Let me be clear. The minister says that young offender reforms are her number one priority. I shudder to think what numbers two, three and four are.

I will ask the minister again. Why does she not just admit what the obvious is? She is in way over her head.

Young Offenders Act
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, let me clarify for the hon. member that indeed the renewal of the youth justice system is one of my priorities but only one of my priorities and this government's priorities as it relates to the justice system.

As I have said before and I will say it again, this government will not take a simplistic approach to the renewal of the youth justice system. We will table our response in a timely fashion.

Victims Of Crime
Oral Question Period

April 22nd, 1998 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Bellehumeur Berthier—Montcalm, QC

Mr. Speaker, we learned this week at the Standing Committee on Justice that the minister plans to establish a national office for victims of crime.

Does the minister realize that, with such a plan, she is about to willingly create duplication and overlap with an organization which is already performing, in Quebec, a function similar to that of the national office she plans to set up?

Victims Of Crime
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, let me clarify for the hon. member that in fact I did not say that. I said there are a number of strategies we might wish to pursue in relation to the issues of victims rights and that in fact a national victims office might be one of those strategies. But I specifically asked the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to look at that issue among others and report back to this House in terms of whether such an office is necessary. I think I made it very plain that I did not want to duplicate that which is being done in the provinces.

Victims Of Crime
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Bellehumeur Berthier—Montcalm, QC

Mr. Speaker, given that Quebec already has a crime victims compensation office, will the minister undertake to include in her proposals the possibility for the provinces to opt out of her national plan with full financial compensation?

Victims Of Crime
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, my commitment is clear. It is to work with the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights of which the hon. member is a member. I have asked that committee as part of its study on victims rights to determine whether a national office would have any utility. I await the committee's recommendations.

Young Offenders Act
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Reform

Gurmant Grewal Surrey Central, BC

Mr. Speaker, five young men, including a young offender, have been arrested in my riding for the senseless murder of a temple caretaker.

The RCMP is pleading for calm, patience and tolerance as their investigation continues. And the slow wheels of justice turn. Why will the justice minister not introduce changes to the Young Offenders Act in a timely fashion? That time is now. The clock is ticking and time is running out for her number one priority.

Young Offenders Act
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member refers to a very tragic situation in the province of British Columbia.

What I do want to reassure everyone in this House about is that the existing provisions in relation to hate in the Criminal Code apply regardless of whether that hate is propagated via the Internet or any other means of communication. Therefore as far as I can tell at this point there is no problem with the application of our hate laws to this situation.