House of Commons Hansard #124 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was billion.

Topics

National Security
Statements by Members

2 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Monte Solberg Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, our foreign affairs minister recently told the foreign affairs committee that the idea of a North American security perimeter was simplistic. He was right, but only in the sense that we need to have much more than a security perimeter to keep Canadians safe and the Canada-U.S. border open to trade. In other words, a North American security perimeter is necessary but it is not sufficient.

This hard reality seems to be lost on the Liberals. What more evidence do they need? We had the bracing attacks of September 11, reports of planned attacks on Montreal's Jewish community, the slowing pace of trade at the Canada-U.S. border and now U.S. military patrols along what was the longest undefended border in the world.

This Liberal reluctance is nothing more than anti-Americanism dressed up as nationalism, and a cheap nationalism it is. Canada is a great country but its greatness is not defined by how often we set out to tweak the nose of the Americans. We should embrace, without apology, a North American security perimeter because it is good for Canadians and all North Americans.

Richard Ditzel Jones
Statements by Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Dan McTeague Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, last Sunday Dr. Reverend Richard Ditzel Jones, chaplain emeritus of the Toronto Police Association, passed away at the age of 94. A respected member of our community, Reverend Jones was a founding member of the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews.

He was also a master fundraiser for a host of charities and will be forever remembered as a close personal confidant to countless members of our police force. Among his friends could be counted former prime ministers St. Laurent, Diefenbaker and Pearson, as well as Dr. Martin Luther King.

He was made an officer of the Order of Canada in 1972 for his work in fostering better relations among Canadians of different backgrounds. Reverend Jones enriched our community in many ways. We were indeed blessed to have had a person like Reverend Jones provide such a stellar example of dedication, caring and commitment.

While he will be truly missed his good works will continue to live on in all of us who knew him well. I know all members of the House join me in extending our sincere condolences to the family of Reverend Jones and his countless friends.

Agriculture
Statements by Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Malpeque, PE

Mr. Speaker, I take this opportunity to congratulate George Webster, a potato producer from Middleton, P.E.I., for being the first recipient of the Canadian agrifood award of excellence for environmental stewardship.

George and his brother in co-operation with a local environmental group opened the Maple Plains agro-environmental demonstration site in August 2000 on their respective family farms. The farm is a working potato operation that features soil conservation structures, enhanced wetlands, grassed waterways with filtering systems and enhanced riparian zones.

The work George has undertaken demonstrates that farming in an environmentally responsible manner can integrate successfully into the natural ecosystem. Having met with George this past weekend, he is not stopping there. He is working with farmers and others toward an Atlantic sustainable resource centre to build on ideas for the future. We congratulate George and the Webster family.

Air Canada
Statements by Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Joe McGuire Egmont, PE

Mr. Speaker, we have a problem in the country. The lack of airline competition is hurting all Canadians. It appears corporate greed has allowed Air Canada to make some poor business decisions.

It swallowed up competition so it could control the sky, but all that resulted in was escalating debt, limited consumer choice, loss of jobs, decreases in flights, escalating prices and very upset passengers.

As soon as any regional or discount airline starts to make a profit, Air Canada steps in and undercuts the competition, even driving some into bankruptcy. Once the competition is gone Air Canada cuts routes and increases prices.

Most recently it appears Air Canada has set its sights on WestJet. By introducing its discount airline, Tango, Air Canada is trying to cut WestJet out of the picture. We all know about Tango in eastern Canada. For years we have had Tango service and high prices. Let us bring back competition.

Persons with Disabilities
Statements by Members

December 4th, 2001 / 2 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Reed Elley Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, this week we place special emphasis on disabled persons in society. Everyday thousands of Canadians face the day with great courage in a world that is not particularly friendly to them.

They struggle to get into buildings which still do not have wheelchair ramps. They work and play in facilities which still do not have washrooms for the handicapped. They face discrimination when they apply for jobs and if they get them they are often the brunt of prejudice in the form of sick humour and rude remarks from some of their workmates.

They come under attack by advocates of a philosophy which would condone the acts of a Robert Latimer in his right to end the life of his disabled daughter.

Why do I know these things to be true? It is because my wife and I are parents to Jill, our very physically challenged 10 year old daughter. She has given us so much, broadened our horizons as parents and brought much joy to our lives with her courage and her humour in spite of her difficulties. Jill keeps us thankful, hopeful and humble.

I have learned not to take the disabled for granted. We are called to be their friends, their protectors, their advocates and their partners in this journey called life. We are in this together and we can all be richer for it.

Dairy Industry
Statements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Guy St-Julien Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian dairy industry has just won an important victory.

The WTO has reversed a decision made earlier this year by a special panel of that body which, as the result of a complaint by the United States and New Zealand, held that Canada was subsidizing its dairy exports.

This decision, according to some, posed a long term threat to the entire system of supply management so dear to agriculture.

The Minister for International Trade and Liberal member for Papineau—Saint-Denis had no qualms about calling this a victory, saying “This decision is very favourable to Canada, which will be able to continue exporting its dairy products”.

I thank the dairy industry and the producers and processors who joined with the Government of Canada in presenting a solid case and bringing about this success.

I thank them for their work.

Water Contamination
Statements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Ghislain Fournier Manicouagan, QC

Mr. Speaker, three years ago, the Minister of Transport admitted that his department was responsible for contaminating the water table in the beaches area of Sept-Îles. He promised that he himself would ensure that his department would repair the damage and find a permanent solution to the problem of drinking water.

For three years now, families in the beaches area must drink bottled water and use it for bathing their children. This is absurd in the year 2001. Furthermore, these citizens have formed a committee to put pressure on the minister.

A few weeks ago, members of the Sept-Îles city council voted unanimously in favour of demanding $2.5 million from the Minister of Transport for expenses incurred in correcting the situation. We are still awaiting an answer from the minister.

The minister must resolve this urgent situation. The health of families in the area is at stake.

Larry McCann
Statements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday afternoon Her Excellency Governor General Adrienne Clarkson hosted the Royal Canadian Geographical Society's Massey Medal award ceremony. I ask the House to join me in congratulating this year's recipient, Dr. Larry McCann.

Dr. McCann is a University of Victoria geographer. His work on Canadian urban and industrial landscapes is second to none. He has published widely on family economies in industrializing societies and on the historical geography of Canadian cities.

The Massey Medal is Canada's highest geographical honour. I am proud to congratulate Dr. McCann.

International Aid
Statements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Deepak Obhrai Calgary East, AB

Mr. Speaker, in the post-September 11 world there is growing consensus that Canada must do more to promote broad based economic growth and the alleviation of suffering in the developing world. Today the Canadian Alliance is calling on the Minister for International Cooperation to launch a new international development white paper process to address Canada's approach.

CIDA has only had marginal success. It has been subject to criticism by the auditor general and subject to Liberal political interference, the last being CIDA funds going to the minister's campaign workers.

Parliament needs to debate key issues on Canada's approach such as tied aid, crisis response, economic growth, charity support and country selection. The launch of this process would ensure transparency and accountability for Canadians.

Jim Coutts
Statements by Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Albina Guarnieri Mississauga East, ON

Mr. Speaker, today a great Liberal who made an indelible contribution to the success of the Pearson and Trudeau governments will be honoured with the Order of Canada.

Nanton born Jim Coutts was principal secretary to Prime Minister Trudeau during the years that defined our Liberal concept of social justice. In the time that I worked for Jim in 1983 and 1984 he demonstrated a genuine connection with the struggles of people trying to get a foothold in the country and become contributors to the economy.

His personal efforts and many charitable pursuits evidenced that the public policies he propelled were motivated by human concerns more than politics. In his book A Canada that works for everyone: changing the way we look at our future , he wrote in 1984:

There is an opportunity this year to examine two of our most fundamental national concerns: How to make the economic pie bigger and how to divide a bigger pie more fairly.

These goals defined his political party and continue to resonate today.

Agriculture
Statements by Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Bev Desjarlais Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal agriculture minister has not been upfront with residents of the Carrot River valley.

Before the last election, the minister agreed to work with the provincial and municipal governments on the Carrot River water pipeline project. This would bring water to residents of the Rural Municipality of Kelsey, the Opaskwayak Cree Nation and local farmers who need it to diversify.

Agriculture Canada assured the province and the rural municipality that it would share the cost of the pipeline, but once the federal election was over it left the community high and dry with a half finished pipeline.

A letter the agriculture minister sent to the reeve on September 4 states:

--resources are not available beyond what has already been committed to the project.

We have since learned that this was not the case. Agriculture Canada has at least $75 million in farm aid funds it made inaccessible to farmers.

With millions in his kitty, the minister cannot say resources are not available. The truth is that he is hoarding this money while farm after farm goes under. Farmers in the Carrot River valley have started diversifying like the minister said they should, only to find the federal Liberal government will not cover its one-third share.

On behalf of my constituents, I call on the agriculture minister to honour his commitment and help finish the Carrot River water pipeline.

Hiv-Aids
Statements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, in order to pay tribute to the exceptional contribution made in recent years by individuals who have helped in the fight against AIDS, the Fondation Farha held its second annual “Hommage aux héros” on November 29 in Montreal. This event, coming just before World AIDS Day on December 1, underscored the extraordinary devotion and efforts of some remarkable people who deserve public recognition.

Ten persons were awarded the title of hero of 2001 at this evening ceremony, which I had the pleasure of attending.

One of those honoured was Lyse Pinault, a friend who, until very recently, was one of my closest collaborators. Lyse is a woman of great commitment who wants to get things moving, and does. I congratulate and thank her.

I would also like to take this opportunity to mention the wonderful work being done by the Fondation Farha, which helps men, women and children living with HIV/AIDS.

Terrorism
Statements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister correctly characterized the terrorist assaults on Israel this past weekend as a “monstrous taking of innocent life”.

Indeed, they are a clear violation of United Nations international law principles that terrorism, from whatever quarter, for whatever purpose, is unacceptable and that it is prohibited to facilitate, support or perpetrate acts of terrorism. On the contrary, it is the responsibility of governments to bring terrorists to justice.

Accordingly, whether Arafat is a partner for peace or a participant in terror will be determined by his own response to the following verification measures for counterterrorism.

Will Arafat and the Palestinian Authority: first, cease and desist from government sanctioned incitement to terror and violence against civilians?; second, disarm and dismantle the terrorist infrastructure that enjoys base and sanctuary within the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Authority itself?; third, cease and desist from aiding and abetting acts of terror?; fourth, declare Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, organizations that publicly seek Israel's destruction and commit terrorist acts to that end, to be terrorist organizations?; and finally, will Arafat and the Palestinian Authority bring to justice--

Terrorism
Statements by Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Dauphin--Swan River.

Immigration
Statements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Inky Mark Dauphin—Swan River, MB

Mr. Speaker, today the auditor general in her report to parliament repeats what has been said for many years about immigration, that is, the government's lack of attention to the report.

Section 12.70 states:

In 1997 we recommended that Citizenship and Immigration Canada review the mechanisms used in applying the eligibility criteria set out in the Immigration Act.

For undocumented claims, the report states that:

Under Bill C-11, the decision on eligibility must be made within three working days--

Why does Bill C-42 propose changes to the 72 hour requirement?

The auditor general is having a difficult time assessing this recommendation of Bill C-11.

The auditor general also found that the safe third country provision made in the 1997 report was totally ignored by the government. So much for listening to the Auditor General of Canada.