House of Commons Hansard #128 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was transportation.

Topics

The House proceeded to the consideration of Bill C-41, an act to amend the statute law in relation to veterans' benefits, as reported (with amendment) from the committee.

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10:05 a.m.

The Speaker

There are four motions in amendment standing on the notice paper for the report stage of Bill C-41, an act to amend the statute law in relation to veterans' benefits.

Motions Nos. 1, 2 and 4 will be grouped for the purposes of debate, but voted upon as follows:

A vote on Motion No. 1 will apply to Motions Nos. 2 and 4;

Motion No. 3 will be debated and voted on separately.

I will now put Motions Nos. 1, 2 and 4 to the House.

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10:05 a.m.

Bloc

Paul Mercier Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

moved:

Motion No. 1

That Bill C-41 be amended by adding after line 21 on page 13 the following new clause:

“6.7.1 For greater certainty, the disclosure referred to in section 6.7 and any other disclosure of personal information referred to in this Act shall be made solely for the purposes of this Act, and in no case shall records containing personal information be made available to another federal department or agency or the personal information contained therein be disclosed in any manner.”

Motion No. 2

That Bill C-41, in Clause 41, be amended by adding after line 6 on page 32 the following:

“109.2.1 For greater certainty, the disclosure referred to in section 109.2 and any other disclosure of personal information referred to in this Act shall be made solely for the purposes of this Act, and in no case shall records containing personal information be made available to another federal department or agency or the personal information contained therein be disclosed in any manner.”

Motion No. 4

That Bill C-41, in Clause 84, be amended by adding after line 36 on page 53 the following:

“(2.1) For greater certainty, the disclosure referred to in this section and any other disclosure of personal information referred to in this Act shall be made solely for the purposes of this Act, and in no case shall records containing personal information be made available to another federal department or agency or the personal information contained therein be disclosed in any manner.”

Mr. Speaker, instead of speaking on these motions, I ask for the unanimous consent of this House to withdraw the three motions standing in my name.

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10:05 a.m.

The Speaker

Is there unanimous consent for the hon. member to withdraw his motions?

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10:05 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

(Motions Nos. 1, 2 and 4 withdrawn)

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10:05 a.m.

Gander—Grand Falls
Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

George Baker Minister of Veterans Affairs and Secretary of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

moved:

Motion No. 3

That Bill C-41, in Clause 46, be amended a ) by replacing line 38 on page 35 with the following:

“32. Subject to this Part, an award in” b ) by deleting lines 12 to 15 on page 36.

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10:05 a.m.

Bloc

Paul Mercier Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have already had an opportunity to tell the House that I support the bill now before us. I did, however, mention three reservations and I will repeat them today.

First, I was critical of the fact that RCMP officers were excluded from compensation during their career for service related injuries. This anomaly, this injustice, has fortunately been corrected by an amendment introduced by the government itself, in response to representations from the opposition, including my own.

Second, I expressed my concern with respect to the three clauses in the bill which allow the minister the dangerous power of exchanging with various departments and agencies information of a personal nature obtained under the terms of the legislation. We must watch out for slip-ups. Big Brother is never far away. We remember the megafile HRDC secretly compiled on every person in this country using information provided by various federal departments and agencies.

Third, and most important, I have already said how fortunate it is that the contribution of civilian personnel who served overseas during the wars has finally been recognized. And I also pointed out how sad it is that it has taken 55 years to achieve this.

Bill C-41 does not take this huge delay into account. This bill would be perfect if it had come to the House 50 years ago. That was not the case, however, and there is nothing in Bill C-41 to compensate for that half century that has passed. These people are being penalized for our delay in looking after them. I tried to bring that up yesterday with the minister in committee, but to no avail.

The minister indicates that the average age of those eligible would be around 79. This means that a number have already died, and will have nothing but our esteem and recognition of their merit.

Nevertheless, we approve of this bill despite its imperfections. We would not like to hold up benefits to this group through delaying tactics. Most of them have been waiting now for 55 years. That is long enough. I would feel badly to make them wait a day longer.

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10:10 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

Is the House ready for the question?

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10:10 a.m.

Some hon. members

Question.

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10:10 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The question is on Motion No. 3. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

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10:10 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

(Motion No. 3 agreed to)

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10:10 a.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell
Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria for the Minister of Veterans Affairs

moved that the bill, as amended, be concurred in with a further amendment.

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10:10 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

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10:10 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

(Motion agreed to)

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10:10 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

When shall the bill be read the third time? By leave, now?