House of Commons Hansard #81 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was coalition.

Topics

Canadian Customs
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Outremont
Québec

Liberal

Martin Cauchon Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec)

Mr. Speaker, Bill S-23, now before parliament, which will receive second reading tomorrow and which will hopefully be referred to committee as soon as possible, is a good bill that will meet all modern needs for customs and customs management.

This bill will allow us, as a society, to undertake improved risk assessment and offer Canadians increased protection, which is what we want.

Penalties will in fact be established, penalties which will come into effect gradually, as we assess them and as we implement them with the business community and Canadian society in general.

National Defence
Oral Question Period

September 19th, 2001 / 2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Randy White Langley—Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, I understand that last year the Prime Minister struck a special committee to deal with national security, chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister. I found out today that it had not met for more than a year. This is not dealing with national security. This is just going through the motions.

How can the Prime Minister seriously say that he is dealing with national security when his own special committee has not met for more than a year?

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, all my ministers are doing their jobs extremely diligently. I know that the opposition does not believe it, but we had the testimony yesterday of the ambassador of the United States.

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Randy White Langley—Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, diligence to the Liberal government is not meeting for more than a year.

A close adviser to the Prime Minister admitted this national security committee was merely a tradition. In fact he said “the committee is not significant”.

Faced with our increasing international security problems, why has the Prime Minister allowed this committee to do nothing for a year and why does he think his national security committee is not significant?

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, when there is a need for a meeting of either the main security committee or the subcommittee either myself or the Deputy Prime Minister will preside over these meetings.

Energy
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Dan McTeague Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Natural Resources.

We have an extensive energy infrastructure in Canada, including oil and gas as well as, in the case of myself and other members, particularly the member for Huron--Bruce, nuclear power plants. In light of the recent terrorist attacks on the United States, I would like to ask the minister what measures the government has taken to ensure the security of these energy systems.

Energy
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Wascana
Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the question. We take nothing for granted with respect to Canada's energy systems and infrastructure. In the tragic circumstances of last week our established regulatory authorities worked very well to safeguard Canadian interests. I think here of the National Energy Board, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission and the explosives administration within my department.

We have excellent co-operation from the provinces and the private sector and with the United States. We have applied all of the valuable expertise that was gained through the Y2K exercise. Enhanced surveillance and security remain in place, but I will not discuss the details.

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Bev Desjarlais Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, Air Canada is pleading for financial help in the wake of last week's tragic terrorist attacks. The airline industry will not be the only industry affected by this tragedy.

There is no question that there is a great risk of job loss for airline workers. Can the government assure the House that if it decides to proceed with any financial assistance to airlines it would be tied to an assurance of maximum job protection for airline workers?

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is getting ahead of herself a little bit. We are currently assessing the financial situation not just of Air Canada but of all the companies. I have been in touch with the chief executive officers of the major Canadian airline companies. We are concerned about the viability. We are concerned about the integrity. We are concerned about service to communities and we are concerned about all the people that work for the airlines.

Once this evaluation is complete then we will be in a position to decide what, if anything, should be done.

Discrimination
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, a few days ago in Ottawa a young Canadian Arab was beaten unconscious when biking home. This is only one of a number of alarming incidents across Canada in the wake of the attack on the U.S.

The Government of Canada has a clear responsibility under the criminal code and multiculturalism policies to both prevent and act on hate crimes. I would like to ask the Prime Minister what action the government is taking to, first, prevent further incidents, and second, given the situation we are in now, to protect Canadians from further incidents taking place.

Discrimination
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I could not have been clearer on this issue than I have been in my speeches on this issue in the last week. It is completely unacceptable that while we are fighting terrorism we would try to make somebody responsible because of the religion that person professes. If somebody is doing these things, as the hon. member reported, the criminal code is there for that. The authorities should arrest the people who do these violent acts and make sure they face the penalty they deserve.

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Val Meredith South Surrey—White Rock—Langley, BC

Mr. Speaker, in the wake of last week's terrorist attacks on the United States, the airline industry around the world has been devastated. Any new security arrangements are going to carry a cost. Is the government considering compensating the airline industry for its direct losses and costs as a result of last Tuesday's events?

Airline Industry
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I do believe I answered this question a few minutes ago. I would like to say that there has been no decision taken in the United States, either by the congress or the administration, on specific measures to help the airline industry. It is under review.

We have to make sure that if any assistance is forthcoming such assistance is properly identifiable to the needs of the companies and will deal not only with the problem at hand, but will deal with fairness not just to the airline industries but to all those other industries that have been affected.

The Economy
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Greg Thompson New Brunswick Southwest, NB

Mr. Speaker, I want to remind the government that the airline industry is not the only sector of the economy that suffered direct losses as a result of last week's terrorist attacks. Canada's trucking industry, for one, manufacturers and all of our exporters incurred significant losses resulting from this crackdown on terrorism.

If the government is prepared to compensate the airlines, what measures is it taking to deal with real losses in these other sectors of the economy?

The Economy
Oral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, at the moment, as I said to the hon. member for Churchill, we are getting a little ahead of ourselves. We have to assess the degree of the dislocation and the damage and there is no doubt that there has been a lot of it. Once we have that assessment we will deal with the facts and decide what if anything should be done. That is just one aspect of the transportation industry.

The member rightly identifies the trucking industry. There are others. The shipping industry was also affected, plus manufacturers, as he said. Let us get the facts before we act.