House of Commons Hansard #11 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was nisga'a.

Topics

Homelessness
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Diane St-Jacques Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, on March 24, the Minister responsible for the homeless stated in the House that it was her responsibility to ensure that all Canada's children have a safe bed to sleep in.

Unfortunately, the minister has not kept that promise. Why is she condemning homeless children to yet another winter out on the street?

Homelessness
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Moncton
New Brunswick

Liberal

Claudette Bradshaw Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, I would like to assure all the poor children throughout Canada that there is someone here who speaks for them. I can assure them that I will continue daily to work to ensure that children have a warm bed to sleep in every night.

National Parks
Oral Question Period

October 26th, 1999 / 2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Nancy Karetak-Lindell Nunavut, NU

Mr. Speaker, a decade ago the government made a commitment to establish more national parks.

Could the Minister of Canadian Heritage explain how this commitment made a decade ago will be fulfilled?

National Parks
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Hamilton East
Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for her question. In particular I was pleased to participate with the hon. member for Nunavut in a celebration in Pond Inlet where the Government of Canada formally signed an agreement with the Inuit of the eastern Arctic to establish three new national parks.

Auyuittuq, Quttinirpaaq and Sirmilik national parks could not have happened without the help of the hon. member and the Inuit people. We thank her and the Inuit people for a very progressive pro-management agreement in three new national parks.

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Independent

John Nunziata York South—Weston, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Foreign Affairs. The minister leaves later today to lead a delegation of foreign ministers to meet with the military dictatorship in Pakistan.

Could he indicate to the House the position he will take on behalf of the Commonwealth? If the military junta does not provide for a timetable for a return to democracy, could he indicate to the House what the position of the Commonwealth and the position of Canada will be?

Foreign Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Winnipeg South Centre
Manitoba

Liberal

Lloyd Axworthy Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the question. I should also say that I appreciate having his company on the trip. I know it will be a great asset. It is very important that members of parliament be involved in these matters.

I will answer the question simply. I want to point that this mission was authorized by the Commonwealth to take the message that under the Harare declaration we do not accept military overthrows of democratically elected governments. We would like to see the regime there establish a clear set of timetables to develop how it will restore democracy and equally so protect the rights of people who have been arrested during that period of time.

Dangerous Offenders
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Reform

Randy White Langley—Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, Glen Galbraith, a convicted sex offender, became the 49th unlawfully at large prisoner from Sumas Community Correctional Centre since January 1998. This long time drug addict and career criminal sexually attacked two teenaged girls from Victoria, British Columbia.

Did he tunnel out? No. Did he scale a fence? No. He packed his fishing rod and his golf bag and he jumped in his own car and took off.

My question is for the solicitor general. Since his last stint was nine years, why has this government failed to prepare this sex offender for release?

Dangerous Offenders
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Cardigan
P.E.I.

Liberal

Lawrence MacAulay Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, this offender was granted day parole by the National Parole Board. When it was discovered that he did not return, a Canada-wide warrant was issued for his arrest. I can assure my hon. colleague that the RCMP is working with all police forces across the country to apprehend this individual as soon as possible.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

I wish to draw hon. members' attention to the presence in the gallery of Her Excellency Madam Esperanza Aguirre, Speaker of the Senate of the Kingdom of Spain, and her delegation.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

I would also like to draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of Mr. Jiang Xinxiong, leader of a delegation from the National People's Congress of China.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Presence In Gallery
Oral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. Before we resume debate we will pay tribute to one of our former members, Mr. Ian Wahn, who passed away. The spokesperson for the Liberal Party will be the member for St. Paul's.

The Late Hon. Ian Wahn
Oral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to pay tribute to a former member for the riding of St. Paul's, Ian Wahn.

He was born in Herbert, Saskatchewan, schooled in Swift Current and obtained his Bachelor of Law degree at the University of Saskatchewan. After that he obtained a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford University in England and then his M.A. there in jurisprudence. He was called to the bar from Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto in 1943. By that time World War II had broken out and Mr. Wahn served with the Queen's Own Rifles of Canada in both the Netherlands and Germany. He earned the rank of captain by the end of the war.

In 1942 he married Pearl Lychak who died in 1988. They had two children, Ian and Gordon.

Mr. Wahn was first elected to the House of Commons in 1962 having defeated Progressive Conservative Roland Michener who then was Speaker of the House. He was re-elected in 1963, 1965 and 1968. While in the Commons he served on many committees, including banking and finance, justice and legal affairs, industry and energy, privileges and elections. After he was re-elected in 1968, he served as chairman of the national defence and external affairs committees.

As a member he sponsored bills to reform the laws relating to immigration, divorce and birth control. He authored the Wahn report from the committee on Canadian-American relations on Canadian control of the economy and culture.

In 1972 Mr. Wahn lost his seat to Ronald Atkey who had won the seat for the Conservatives under Robert Stanfield. He returned to his law practice afterward working with the firm of Borden and Elliot and in 1961 helped form the firm of Wahn, Mayer, Smith, Creber, Lyons, Torrance & Stephenson, now known as Smith Lyons.

This morning I asked the member for Davenport who had served in his constituency association in 1964 about his remembrances. He felt that Mr. Wahn served a valued role as a parliamentarian. He called him a small l liberal of the first order with a true understanding of democracy. He said that Mr. Wahn had a skill for organizing community meetings and citizen fora and for explaining and obtaining feedback on some of the most complex issues that affected the country. He had regular meetings from November until June each year with invited colleagues from Ottawa.

He was viewed as a first rate bridge between Ottawa and Toronto. He had a highly developed social conscience which resulted in effective representation on behalf of his constituents on issues such as pensions, disability and services for immigrants.

It was in the services for new immigrants that he made a huge impact. The Deputy Prime Minister reminded me that a large number of the constituents in St. Paul's in those days were of Chinese origin. Mr. Wahn would say that some of his constituents thought he was Chinese but when they found out that he was not Chinese they voted for him anyway. I think he had earned his stripes in the way of immigration services and by being an excellent constituency representative.

As we now strive for antidotes to the cynicism and apathy about government, politics and politicians, we must endeavour to look to the example of the true constituency MPs like Ian Wahn. Every day he demonstrated a true respect for the role of the citizen in a working democracy.

As the member for St. Paul's, the success of Ian Wahn in the area of citizen engagement and social justice provides a daily inspiration to me.

The Late Hon. Ian Wahn
Oral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Reform

Werner Schmidt Kelowna, BC

Madam Speaker, I rise in the House today to pay tribute to the late Ian Wahn. While I did not have the pleasure of meeting Mr. Wahn, it is my understanding that he was a dedicated parliamentarian for 10 years, from 1962 to 1972.

While in the House of Commons he served on several committees, including banking and finance, justice and legal affairs, industry and energy, and privileges and elections. Additionally, he served as chairman of the national defence and the external affairs committees.

He was an accomplished lawyer both prior to and after his parliamentary career. His professional success flowed naturally from his academic achievements. He was a Rhodes scholar, having received both his B.A. and M.A. from Oxford University. He later returned to Canada and finished law school at Osgoode Hall in Toronto. He was a patriot and veteran who served with the Queen's Own Rifles of Canada during the second world war. He earned the rank of captain by the end of that war.

It is with great respect that I pay tribute to the memory of Ian Wahn. I extend my condolences to the family and friends of a true gentleman, scholar and patriot.