House of Commons Hansard #59 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was card.

Topics

Persons with Disabilities
Statements by Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to bring to the attention of the House the urgent need for our public transit providers to ensure that its door to door transportation service for persons with mobility problems improve the service they currently deliver.

Recently in my riding of Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, Peel Region councillors have expressed serious concern for the Peel Transhelp service provided by Brampton Transit which has left many of these riders unable to get to important appointments even when the rides are booked days in advance. The annual number of disabled who rely on this service in Peel has increased from 3,700 passengers to 7,224 since 1998.

I would like to encourage all levels of government to work with local transit authorities to collectively find ways to improve this vital service on which many Canadians have come to rely.

Canadian Flag
Statements by Members

February 13th, 2003 / 2:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gerry Ritz Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, in the 1970s there was a British comedy called Don't Raise the Bridge, Lower the River . Now we have a Canadian farce produced by public works called, “Don't Raise the Flag, Lower the Standards”.

A couple of years ago Canadians were bothered by the great flag giveaway of the prime minister wannabe of Canadian Heritage. Not only was it outrageously expensive, but Canadians who sold flags had their market undercut. Canadians who proudly bought their own flag had their patriotism undercut. Nothing drains the value out of a symbol faster than handing it out for nothing.

Of course value has always been a concept beyond the grasp of that other side. In its misguided haste public works lowered the standards for our Canadian flag and made sure that voters would be disappointed after they received their flag.

Maybe Canadians should take a page from the former finance minister's playbook and fly the Panamanian flag. It appears to have served the member from LaSalle—Émard well in hiding his taxes from his insatiable cabinet colleagues.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, again today the Iraqi crisis has deepened. Arms inspectors now apparently believe that Iraqi violations of UN resolutions go far beyond what was previously suspected.

Allied troops are amassing in the Persian Gulf and President Bush gave an address to his troops today that clearly put them on a war alert for Iraq.

In response, our defence minister announces sending troops to Afghanistan.

Does the government get it? Is it engaged in the Iraq crisis and, if so, how?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, of course we are engaged in the Iraq crisis and are engaged in it in a way that the Canadian population wants us to be engaged, in a way that ensures the best possible way of getting peace and working through our multilateral institutions in support of our American allies, telling the Americans and working with them as we take this through the United Nations process, which is the best guarantee of security for them, security of the world and security for Canadians.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I think what the minister is really saying is that they are reading polls and doing focus groups.

A worldwide terrorist alert is also escalating. Tanks are positioned at Heathrow airport in London. The United States of America is on a nationwide orange alert. We are told that prominent North Americans may face assassination. In response, the government tells us that it is finally banning groups that have long been illegal elsewhere.

Does the government get it on this? Is it putting Canada on some kind of security alert and, if so, at what level?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the government is very concerned about what is happening in the United Kingdom and the United States. We are in touch with other governments and there is a sharing of intelligence. We have no information. The opposition should listen to this because we are concerned about what Canadians hear, and Canadians need to hear the truth.

We have no information that there will be a security attack against Canada, but we are taking every precaution necessary.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I guess our fear is that this government would be the last to find out.

As this crisis worsens, there is anxiety in financial markets worldwide. Here in North America we are already seeing delays at the border.

Only now, after months of disengagement, our Prime Minister travels today to the United States. Given that Canada and the government has not been part of the allied coalition, what assurance can the government give the House that war or security activities will, in no way, affect or disrupt Canadian trade, or lose Canadians their jobs?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Don Valley East
Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I am surprised that the hon. member would have the temerity to ask that question. This is a very grave situation.

The fact is that Canadians need to be reassured. We do not need the opposition fearmongering. We are all concerned and the Prime Minister will outline Canada's concerns when he speaks this evening in Chicago.

Canadians have to know that we have done a lot since September 11, 2001, to increase security in the country and we will continue to do more.

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, as the threat of war increases so does the threat of terrorist reprisal. While the rest of the world is taking action against known terrorist organizations, Canada is lagging seriously behind.

To date, we have only listed 19 terrorist entities, while the United Nations has a list of close to 200.

The southeast Asian terrorist group, Jemaah Islamiah, was responsible for the Bali bombing that killed over 200 people, including two Canadians, yet this well-known terrorist organization is not on the Canadian list. Why?

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Malpeque
P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, we do things differently in this country. In fact, we do it more carefully and more securely in my point of view.

We have a process with restrictions that were placed on it by the House. There are severe restrictions when we name entities on the anti-terrorist list under Bill C-36. We are continuing to work on that list. We named three more entities yesterday. Regardless of whether or not they are on the list, our security intelligence services, our law enforcement services--

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Crowfoot.

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Crowfoot, AB

That is right, Mr. Speaker, we do things much differently. As the world reacts quickly, we react slowly. And shame on the Solicitor General.

The revolutionary armed forces of Colombia are referred to as the most dangerous terrorist organization in the western hemisphere. Moro Islamic liberation front threatened the Canadian embassy last year, killed 13 people abroad in a Canadian mining truck in December 2002, and reportedly has been trying to extort money from a Canadian mining firm.

Neither of these terrorist organizations are on the Canadian list. Why not?

Terrorism
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Malpeque
P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter Solicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I will tell the House how the official opposition operates. It operates on the basis of creating fear from that side of the House. We will not accept that on this side of the House.

We are doing our job in terms of listing entities. We are doing our job in terms of the security intelligence service of the country. We are doing our job in terms of working with other international services around the world to combat terrorism without trying to create headlines.

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, on the eve of the inspectors presenting their report, the U.S. Secretary of State has given the Security Council an ultimatum. Colin Powell said, and I quote, “—if the UN will not act (and) demonstrates its irrelevance, then the United States is prepared, with a coalition of the willing, to act”.

With the Prime Minister scheduled to speak in Chicago today, will the Minister of Foreign Affairs tell us here, in the House, that under no circumstances will Canada be part of a coalition of the willing without the support of the UN?

Iraq
Oral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale
Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the message the Prime Minister will be giving in Chicago tonight is the same as the one he has been giving here in the House all along. He favours acting through the United Nations Security Council. That has always been our approach.

We have resolution 1441. We have established a process. Mr. Blix has established that this process is serious and credible. We are committed to this process and we will remain committed.