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 treaty.

Topics

The Environment
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, once again the official opposition has missed the bus. The Bloc asked the question yesterday and I answered this very point.

The fact is that we now have in place committees of 450 people from the private sector, the provincial governments and the federal government who are working together to work out a strategy. The position taken by the Canadian government is virtually identical to that announced yesterday by Chancellor Schroeder of Germany. We are on track to achieve our Kyoto targets.

Homelessness
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Minister of Labour admitted that the federal government had made cuts and that this had contributed to increased poverty.

My question is for the Minister of Labour. Since this is the first time that a minister in this government has admitted that federal government cuts have hurt the most disadvantaged and the homeless, can she tell us what she intends to do about the situation?

Homelessness
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Moncton
New Brunswick

Liberal

Claudette Bradshaw Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, during my travels this summer, I heard that cuts at the federal and provincial levels had had an impact on poverty and the situation of the homeless in Canada.

This government asked me to play a co-ordinating role. I spent the summer visiting communities across Canada, because we want to do something about the homeless. We will do so in partnership with committees, municipalities and the provinces.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, the government says that it is concerned about poverty, but its actions say otherwise.

Alain Boudreau, a young seasonal worker, is getting $50 a week in employment insurance benefits because the method of calculation takes only his last 26 weeks of work into account.

If the calculation were based on a year, Alain would receive $272 in benefits. This makes a world of difference for a young person starting out.

My question is for the Prime Minister. Does he think that $50 a week is enough to live on?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Oakville
Ontario

Liberal

Bonnie Brown Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, we have to remember that EI is not an industry or a business. It is an income support program for those who qualify. Those who are eligible apply for it and receive benefits based upon the earnings they have been taking home from the jobs they have had.

If the member would like to bring the particular details of this case to my attention, I will investigate it with him.

Homelessness
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Diane St-Jacques Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, on March 25, the minister responsible for the homeless promised to put a strategy in favour of these poor Canadians in place within 30 days. It is now 215 days since the promise was made.

Could she tell us where the strategy and the money are?

Homelessness
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Moncton
New Brunswick

Liberal

Claudette Bradshaw Minister of Labour

Mr. Speaker, for 31 years I have worked in the fight against poverty.

When I went to Toronto, I promised to meet mayor Mel Lastman within 30 days, certainly not to come up with a long term solution for the homeless in that time frame.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Sophia Leung Vancouver Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Health. Some 30% of Canadians live in rural communities yet only 14.3% of general physicians practise there. Fewer than 3% of all specialists operate in rural communities.

What immediate action will the minister take to correct the tragic situation for health care in rural Canada?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the government is working actively to assist provinces in meeting their responsibilities to make services accessible to Canadians no matter where they live, including the one-third of Canadians who live in rural and remote parts of the country.

For example, we have appointed for the first time an executive director of rural health to work with me in developing health policies that will respond to this real challenge.

Just this past weekend we funded a very successful national conference on strategies for rural health and rural research. We put aside money in the budget for rural health strategies. We are committed to getting the job done.

The Environment
Oral Question Period

October 26th, 1999 / 2:50 p.m.

Reform

Rahim Jaffer Edmonton—Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, we still have not heard from the minister on the government's position on the UN imposed emission targets.

All we have heard is that the minister will either throw Canadians out of their cars with a gas tax or out of their jobs with a carbon tax.

Will the minister end the mystery today and table the government's proposal to meet the Kyoto emission targets?

The Environment
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Victoria
B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, contrary to what the hon. member said, the agreement in Kyoto was arrived at by 160 countries. It was not imposed by the United Nations.

Further to what he said with respect the issue of taxation, all members of the government have made perfectly clear that we do not believe a broad based carbon tax would be an appropriate way to go.

There are however many other other measures, including incentives whereby we can work together to achieve the Kyoto targets. These targets are very important for us to achieve.

Genetically Modified Foods
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Hélène Alarie Louis-Hébert, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week the newspapers carried an Agriculture and Agri-food Canada advertisement looking for a geneticist to plan, set up and direct a transgenic products program.

My question is for the Minister of Agriculture. Are we to take this job advertisement for someone to plan, set up and direct a program for genetically modified food products as confirmation that such a program does not exist within his department at the present time?

Genetically Modified Foods
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings
Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the centres of excellence and the considerable amount of research staff that we have in Agriculture Canada are always working to find new ways of technology, advancing science and improving science which has been the standby and safeguard for the advancement of the agriculture and agri-food industry in Canada.

We have those kinds of scientists and we do that kind of work. When the work is finished and in the process we check it based on safety and the best science available today. That is how the decisions on the results of that work are based.

Equality
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Gordon Earle Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, the throne speech stated that our diversity was a source of strength and creativity.

The government overlooked an experienced and qualified black judge in Her Honour Judge Corrine Sparks during a recent appointment in Nova Scotia. The government has fanned the flames of racism with its inept handling of the Nova Scotia fisheries dispute. The government has failed miserably to promote visible minorities within the federal public service.

What is the government doing to address racial inequities both in its own policies and racism within the ranks of hiring of the public service?

Equality
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie
Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard President of the Treasury Board and Minister responsible for Infrastructure

Mr. Speaker, contrary to what the hon. member says, our government has indeed taken steps to make the public service even more inclusive. As soon as we were apprised of the problems, my predecessor set up an external advisory board headed by Mr. Perinbam to advise the government on how to achieve an even more inclusive public service.

I do not think that our government has anything to learn from the New Democratic Party on this score.