House of Commons Hansard #145 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was child.

Topics

Interparliamentary Delegations
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Oak Ridges
Ontario

Liberal

Bryon Wilfert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34(1) I have the honour to present to the House, in both official languages, the report of the 24th General Assembly of the ASEAN Interparliamentary Organization meetings held in Jakarta, Indonesia in September 2003.

Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

October 28th, 2003 / 10:05 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gurmant Grewal Surrey Central, BC

Mr. Speaker, as the co-chair of the Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the third report of the Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations, concerning broadcasting licence fees.

Notwithstanding Standing Order 109 of the House of Commons, your committee requests that the government table a comprehensive response to this report within 30 days.

Open Government Act
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Liberal

John Bryden Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, ON

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-462, an act to amend the Access to Information Act and to make amendments to other Acts.

Mr. Speaker, this is a private member's bill that is the result of all party cooperation from backbench MPs extending over several years it will dramatically overhaul the current Access to Information Act and extend its reach to include all crown corporations and government agencies, government funded non-profit organizations, the Senate, the House of Commons, the Library of Parliament, ministers and their exempt staffs, officers of Parliament, cabinet confidences and government opinion polling, among other things.

This bill I think is very much in order in the temper of the times and I think, Mr. Speaker, you will find that most members will support it.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Myron Thompson Wild Rose, AB

Mr. Speaker, on behalf of citizens in and around the Drumheller region of Alberta and in my particular area of the riding, petitioners have signed a petition today calling on Parliament to immediately raise the age of sexual consent from 14 to 16 years of age. This petition will be joining the hundreds of thousands of requests already tabled for this.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Larry Spencer Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions to file, one with one hundred signatures from the province of Quebec and one from Saskatchewan. Both petitions call on Parliament to pass legislation making the legal definition of marriage to be that between a man and a woman.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions to present, all of which are signed by a number of Canadians, including citizens from my own riding of Mississauga South.

The first petition has to do with Bill C-250. The petitioners want to draw to the attention of the House the fact that it is one of the most dangerous pieces of legislation brought before the House and it must not be passed into law because it would threaten all those who oppose special rights for homosexuals, including same sex marriages, with prosecution on the basis of alleged hate.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the second petition has to do with stem cell research. The petitioners would like to draw to the attention of the House the fact that Canadians support ethical stem cell research which has already shown encouraging potential to provide cures and therapies for the illnesses and diseases of Canadians. The petitioners also want to point out that non-embryonic stem cells, which are also known as adult stem cells, have shown significant research progress without the immune rejection or ethical problems associated with embryonic stem cells.

The petitioners therefore call upon Parliament to focus its legislative support on adult stem cell research to find those cures and therapies.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

The final petition, Mr. Speaker, is on the subject matter of the definition of marriage. The petitioners would like to draw to the attention of the House that on June 10 the Ontario Court of Appeal in fact said that the definition of marriage being the legal union of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others is unconstitutional. They also want to point out that the federal government has the opportunity under section 33 of the charter, also known as the notwithstanding clause, to overrule that judgment.

The petitioners therefore call upon Parliament to invoke the notwithstanding clause and to pass a law so that only two persons of the opposite sex can be married.

Questions on the Order Paper
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Halifax West
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the following questions will be answered today: Nos. 248 and 256.

Question No. 248
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Garry Breitkreuz Yorkton—Melville, SK

With respect to the following statements from page two of the Government of Canada Regulatory Policy published by the Privy Council Office “to ensure that use of the government’s regulatory powers results in the greatest net benefit to society,” and “the government will weigh the benefits of alternatives to regulation, and of alternative regulations, against their cost, and focus resources where they can do the most good”: ( a ) what are all the benefits of gun ownership in Canada; ( b ) what are all the direct and indirect costs of regulating firearms ownership in Canada; and ( c ) what were the benefits and costs for each of the alternatives to regulating firearms ownership weighed by the government?

Question No. 248
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Malpeque
P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, hunting and other shooting sports do have a sizeable economic impact on Canada.

In response to (a), in 2000 the report “The Importance of Nature to Canadians: The Economic Significance of Nature-related Activities” published by Environment Canada indicated:

In 1996, residents of Canada reported spending $11.0 billion on a variety of nature related activities within Canada. They made trip related expenditures for transportation, accommodation and food. They also purchased equipment, supplies and other items needed to pursue nature related activities, such as camping gear, outdoor clothing, boats, trucks, hunting and fishing equipment and supplies, licence and entry fees, cameras and binoculars. Other examples of expenditures for nature related activities are membership fees or donations to nature related organizations, costs to maintain land for conservation and purchase of feeders and feed for wildlife.

Of that total, $828.3 million is estimated to have been spent by hunters. It is important to note that this estimate does not differentiate between those hunters who use firearms and those who use other means. The 1996 survey breaks down estimated expenditures by hunters in this way: Hunting equipment accounted for 46.5% of the $823.8 million spent within Canada. The remaining amount went for trip related expenses, including: transportation, 20.2%; food, 12.1%; and accommodation, 4.7%; or for other items, such as licence fees and ammunition, 16.5%.

Hunting is the overwhelming reason for firearm ownership in Canada. A study conducted in the fall 2000 by GPC Research found that 74% of Canadian firearms owners owned guns for hunting. Fourteen percent of Canadian owners are target shooters, with this the second most common activity reported in the survey.

With regard to the year preceding the GPC Research survey, it should be noted that more than half of Canadian firearm owners had used their firearms no more than once. In fact, 37% of Canadian firearm owners surveyed had not used their firearm in the previous 12 months.

In response to (b), a more fulsome report on costs will be provided in the chapter on the firearms program contained within the Department of Justice’s departmental performance report, DPR, for 2002-03 that will be tabled in Parliament this fall.

Direct costs incurred by the Canada Firearms Centre since the passage of the Firearms Act in fiscal year 1995-96 to the end of 2001-02 were approximately $668.3 million.

This amount includes funds reimbursed by the centre to its federal partners, such as CCRA, RCMP, HRDC and PWGSC, and contribution funding to the provinces, territories, aboriginal and other communities, and non-profit organizations.

In response to (c), it is impossible to determine the economic impact of firearms without considering the costs associated with firearm crime, violence and accidents. A study by Ted R. Miller published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal in 1995 indicated that the total estimated costs of gunshot wounds in Canada in 1991 was $6.6 billion in 1993 dollars.

That study looked only at incidents where an individual was shot. Clearly, there are also economic costs related to firearm crime where victims are not shot. This amount would be in addition to Dr. Miller’s $6.6 billion estimate.

The financial impact of not controlling firearms is evident. The economic impact of alternatives to universal licensing and registration can be seen, for example, in the United States. It was recently reported that Chicago public schools spend approximately $60 million U.S. on security. According to the chief executive of Chicago public schools, “That's the price we're paying for our society's appalling fascination with, and easy access to, guns”.

Question No. 256
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

John Duncan Vancouver Island North, BC

What was the total amount of money transferred to the Assembly of First Nations by the government, broken down by fiscal year from 1994-2003, and, without limiting the generality of “total amount”, what was the total amount in each fiscal year broken down by core funding, contracts, special funding, special advocacy issues, travel if distinct from core funding, salaries if distinct from core funding, and any other funding category usually distinguished by the government?

Question No. 256
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Kenora—Rainy River
Ontario

Liberal

Bob Nault Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, the breakdown is as follows:

The above amounts represent the funding categories used by the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development for funding agreements with the Assembly of First Nations.

Question No. 256
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Halifax West, NS

I suggest that all other questions be allowed to stand.

Question No. 256
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

The Deputy Speaker

Is that agreed?