House of Commons Hansard #127 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was impaired.

Topics

Housing
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise in the House today to present my report “Housing and Homelessness: Still an Unnatural Disaster”.

I visited seven cities and met with housing advocates and activists who gave compelling evidence on how Canada's housing crisis is getting worse and affecting more and more Canadians.

The recent housing framework agreement provides less than one-tenth of what is really needed for affordable housing in Canada. The fact that the federal government, with the provinces and the territories, has even agreed to a framework at all is due to the outstanding work of organizations like the National Housing and Homelessness Network and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, which have brought national attention and visibility to the situation facing millions of Canadians.

We have to do more. My report calls on the federal government to recognize housing as a human right and to make affordable housing a priority in the upcoming budget.

I challenge the Minister of Finance to heed his own words, said when he was in opposition, to invest in social housing and not leave Canadians out in the cold. Every single family and individual has the right--

Housing
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Jonquière.

Infrastructure Program
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Bloc

Jocelyne Girard-Bujold Jonquière, QC

Mr. Speaker, at the dawn of a new federal budget, I invite the Minister of Finance to respond to the appeal launched by his Quebec counterpart, Pauline Marois, in her November 1 budget, which involves investing new money in Quebec infrastructures in order to stimulate the economy and create jobs.

Since September 11 an economic downturn has hit and many workers have unfortunately lost their jobs. According to the president of the Coalition pour le renouvellement des infrastructures au Québec, Gilles Vaillancourt, every billion dollars spent on infrastructure creates 12,500 jobs. This is a solution the Minister of Finance might consider seriously in his next budget.

I would remind him that in October he indicated an openness to the idea of a 50:50 cost sharing arrangement with Quebec to expand the parc des Laurentides highway into four lanes.

Expectations are high in the Saguenay. The great money man would be making a mistake if he did not invest the amounts so long awaited. After all, a promise is a promise.

Softwood Lumber
Statements By Members

December 7th, 2001 / 11:10 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, the province of British Columbia continues to pay a hefty price for not having an influential cabinet minister.

Just as it has done with the softwood lumber dispute, the government has failed to step in and offer to help the province in our fight against the mountain pine beetle. The Minister of Natural Resources now seems to believe his government has done its part, as it pointed out to the province that it had this problem in 1995 with the timely advice “You might want to fix it”.

As with health care and highways, the government has abandoned my province to find the money and resources to combat a crisis. This is a complete reversal of the minister's position in May when his response to my question was that the government would pursue every reasonable means to help our forest sector find a solution.

A war against the beetle costs money. On November 6, I wrote to the Minister of Finance to ask that he allocate $50 million annually to fight the mountain pine beetle.

If the government takes the issue seriously, the necessary funds will be targeted in Monday's budget.

Nunavut Awards
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Nancy Karetak-Lindell Nunavut, NU

Mr. Speaker, this week was a proud week for Nunavut. On Wednesday, Ashley Dean from Rankin Inlet was awarded the Prince of Wales Community Leader Scholarship for all her volunteer work, from coaching children in figure skating and soccer to organizing special events for elders and combating racism.

On Thursday, Moses Aliyak, also of Rankin Inlet, was awarded the Medal of Bravery by the Governor General for his efforts in confronting a polar bear which attacked his family camp in 1999. Showing great courage, Moses Aliyak distracted the polar bear so that his grandson could run to safety. As a result of his brave action, Moses was severely injured. Hattie Amitnak, who was mauled to death in that same incident, was also awarded the Medal of Bravery posthumously in an earlier ceremony.

I ask my colleagues to join with me in honouring these outstanding citizens.

Pearl Harbor
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, 60 years ago today Pearl Harbor was attacked, taking the lives of 2,390 Americans. It was a day of infamy.

The attack galvanized the entire United States and it brought them into the war. The rallying cry became “Remember Pearl Harbor!”.

Pearl Harbor stands as a lesson in the need to be vigilant in our defence of our values and our freedoms.

In recent years with the end of the cold war that lesson may have been forgotten by some governments. Tragically, not quite three months ago, the free world was again reminded of the dangers of complacency.

Today yet again the free world is defending itself against aggressors that seek to destroy what we value. September 11 has also become a day that will live in infamy.

Let us hope that the tragic events of December 7, 1941, and September 11, 2001, will serve future generations as examples of both the tragedies of terrorism and the courage of those who defend us from it.

Hockey Day
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Scott Brison Kings—Hants, NS

Mr. Speaker, the CBC will air in the new year a three hour celebration of hockey during an event designated as Hockey Day in Canada. The town of Windsor will serve as host community for the broadcast, which will include nine other communities across Canada.

Windsor is known as “the little town of big firsts”, including the oldest agricultural fair in North America, Canada's first independent school and Canada's oldest library. It is the home of the first giant pumpkins and the first pumpkin regatta. Most significantly, Windsor is the birthplace of hockey.

It is in the writings of internationally known author Thomas Chandler Haliburton, a Windsor resident, that the first known reference to a form of ice hockey can be found. Dr. Garth Vaughan, a Windsor resident, published his extensive research verifying Windsor's claim in a book entitled

The Puck Starts Here.

In fact, in 1844 when writing about his early 1800s childhood experiences, Thomas Chandler Haliburton referred directly to the boys “racin', yelpin', hollerin' and whoopin' like mad with pleasure” playing what was then known as hurley--

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the auditor general's report continues to confirm this government as the worst money managers in Canadian history, with $1.6 billion in wasted grants pointed out two years ago. That rocked the government. That was just one department. This time the auditor general talks about $16.3 billion worth of grants right across the government being wasted.

We can deal with increases to health, security and defence if the government is willing to deal with the waste. Will the Prime Minister, who says he is writing the budget, leak some good news and stand and say that there will be across the board cuts to the $16.3 billion in wasteful grants going on right now? Will he leak that good news?

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition ought to know, in any event, that the government has been very assiduous in the way it has controlled spending. If we take a look at our spending compared to where it was when we took office that becomes manifestly clear.

What I would simply say to the hon. member in terms of the budget is that I look forward to seeing him on Monday.

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the government has not been assiduous. It has been insidious. We want to know what is going on with all this waste.

The auditor general has shown this government's mismanagement clearly. Even after the scandal involving the Department of Human Resources Development, there was no control over the $16.3 billion in subsidies. We have to cut waste in order to finance health and safety.

Will this government announce today the cuts to grants and subsidies contained in Monday's budget?

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray Deputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, as usual, the Leader of the Opposition is mistaken.

The auditor general did not say these amounts were wasted. She spoke of improved management and confirmed that the steps for improving management of these contributions are being followed.

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Okanagan—Coquihalla
B.C.

Canadian Alliance

Stockwell Day Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, whenever the government gets into trouble, instead of fixing the mess it does a two point strategy. It does the rope-a-dope. It goes in the corner, covers up, takes a few hits, and then it creates a diversion somewhere else in the arena.

This time it is budget leaks. It is budget leaks about the CBC, what the Prime Minister calls his own TV station, getting more money. It is budget leaks about private, pet, political projects like speeding up the high speed Internet chat rooms for the Minister of Industry.

I have a better, less destructive strategy. Will the Prime Minister stand up and announce an across the board cut in these wasteful political areas--

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Deputy Prime Minister.

Auditor General's Report
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Windsor West
Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray Deputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has spoken about a rope-a-dope strategy. Does this come from himself looking into the mirror? Is it a personal reference about himself when he speaks of rope-a-dope or does this come from the days of Muhammad Ali?

I would like to say that when the hon. member talks about cuts he must be calling for cuts in health care and cuts in aid for higher education. This is not what Canadians want and I am sure that on Monday we will see an excellent budget which even he will have to support.

Taxation
Oral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jason Kenney Calgary Southeast, AB

Mr. Speaker, today we learned that unemployment increased again, this month to 7.5%, more than expected, with a loss of 43,000 full time jobs, thanks to this Liberal recession.

The government is showing us what its priorities are. Instead of reducing job killing payroll taxes, which it is going to hike next year, it is leaking billions in handouts for the heritage and industry departments.

Why does the government not get its priorities straight and give Canadians the job security they demand by reducing job killing payroll taxes instead of increasing wasteful spending?