House of Commons Hansard #99 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was first.

Topics

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Brien Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government has stirred up controversy by announcing that it bought drugs from Apotex so as to be ready for any possible anthrax contamination.

But Bayer already markets a drug for this purpose which is protected by the Patent Act. The announcement was made without anyone having checked with Bayer as to its capacity to deliver large stocks rapidly.

How does the Minister of Industry explain that the Minister of Health deliberately violated the Patent Act?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the security of Canadians' health, including the need to stockpile the drugs necessary to protect that health, is naturally my top priority.

Health Canada officials acted responsibly. There are certain problems between the companies. I have asked officials to resolve these problems and I am confident that an agreement will soon be reached.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Brien Témiscamingue, QC

Mr. Speaker, the health argument does not cut it because, on the one hand, the federal government is getting ready to buy unapproved copies of a drug and, on the other, Bayer is manufacturing a drug approved by Health Canada and can respond immediately to the federal government's needs.

Only one question remains. What was the real reason behind this political decision?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Etobicoke Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I can assure the hon. member and the House of Commons that we intend to resolve this matter responsibly. More importantly, however, we also intend to fully protect the health security of Canadians.

Immigration
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Paul Forseth New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration made a big media splash about the maple leaf ID card for landed immigrants so that they could come and go in and out of Canada without a passport.

In typical Liberal half measure style, the proposed card is not state of the art and is in fact a low tech, easily duplicated piece of plastic that may cause more trouble than it attempts to solve.

Why did the minister not insist that the card be tamper proof?

Immigration
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I want to assure the member opposite that the new maple leaf card is state of the art, that it does have capabilities to ensure that it is fraud resistant and tamper resistant and further that it has biometric capacity as well as compatibility with U.S. technology.

However I want to discuss with the privacy commissioner before we move on any of those features.

Immigration
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Paul Forseth New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, the so-called smart card is really a dumb card. Credit card fraud and the production of fake charge cards have been around for years. The minister's card is no innovation at all; no embedded fingerprint or iris scan in the card.

Why is the minister going to give Canada a dumb card in maybe about two years rather than a smart card right now?

Immigration
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Thornhill
Ontario

Liberal

Elinor Caplan Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the new maple leaf card, which will be distributed in late spring of next year, just a few months from now, will be state of the art. It contains dozens of security features that frankly I do not want to discuss publicly because by discussing them publicly it will make it more difficult to secure the card.

The member opposite, perhaps at committee, might want to ask for a discussion of the new maple leaf card but I am not sure that members would want to have all the information about all the security features.

Communications Security Establishment
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Wood Nipissing, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of National Defence.

Last week the government announced additional funding for the Communications Security Establishment. Could the minister today elaborate on this announcement?

Communications Security Establishment
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

York Centre
Ontario

Liberal

Art Eggleton Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the $37 million will help to buy new equipment for the Communications Security Establishment. It is an important organization within the government. It comes under the jurisdiction of defence but it works with our allies, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand.

We need to be on the leading edge of technology to make sure that we get the kind of intelligence, the kind of information that we need to be able to counter terrorism. This will give us the tools to do that.

Bill C-36
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Justice who has said repeatedly that she wants to listen to the advice and recommendations of the committee but she knows that the committee will not be giving advice or making recommendations. The committee will either be amending the legislation, Bill C-36, or not.

Is the minister prepared to say in the House that she will accept amendments coming from the committee that have to do with sunsetting certain controversial clauses of the bill? That is what the House and the committee needs to know.

Bill C-36
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the committee has a number of options available to it, one of which is to propose amendments to the House in relation to the legislation. The other option is that it can provide advice and recommendations to the government and the government can propose amendments to the legislation.

I have tried to be very open with the House committee and again this morning with the Senate committee. I look forward to hearing the views and advice of both committees. If the hon. member has amendments to propose and if we think they improve the legislation we will certainly consider them very seriously.

Bill C-36
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, we may have amendments to propose but I think government backbenchers on the committee need to know that the government is truly open to amending the legislation. The Prime Minister's remarks did not exactly help in that respect.

Is the Prime Minister still open to the legislation being amended, having certain clauses sunsetted if that is the will of the committee? The House needs to know that otherwise the committee process will be a sham.

Bill C-36
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton West
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I think the Prime Minister and I have both been clear that we believe the three year review mechanism is the appropriate one. However I believe we have both been equally clear that we are open to advice and recommendations from either the House or the Senate committees. If the House committee chooses to make recommendations in relation to amendments, we as the government will consider those and we will consider them with an open mind.

I hope our goal is the same, which is to have the most effective and yet the fairest anti-terrorism legislation possible.

Health
Oral Question Period

October 22nd, 2001 / 2:40 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Health just said twice that there are different versions of what happened with regard to the Cipro issue. What are those versions and which one does he believe?