House of Commons Hansard #114 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was political.

Topics

Federal-Provincial Relations
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, federal-provincial relations on this Prime Minister's watch have hit an all time low. Six out of 10 provinces oppose the long gun registry. The same number have said no to the softwood lumber offer. The federal government's neglect of SARS and BSE continues to wreak havoc on the Canadian economy.

When will the government start to show respect for the provinces and convene a first ministers conference? Will the Prime Minister convene a first ministers conference to deal with these crises?

Federal-Provincial Relations
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate the hon. member for his election as the leader of the Conservative Party. I hope he will stay in the same position for a long time and on the same side of the House.

We had a federal-provincial meeting with the first ministers in February that was very successful. We also had a health accord that was very welcomed by the Canadian public.

All the files the hon. member is referring to are part of the continuing work that we do on a daily basis with the provincial governments, where each government does its best to solve the problem in one province and in the nation.

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, this morning's promise of a future compensation package for farmers affected by BSE is another cynical attempt to pre-empt the western premiers' request for aid.

The need for compensation is urgent and immediate. There is a product backlog and liquidity is the big issue.

When will the government relax the two week waiting period for workers affected by the ban of Canadian beef and when will it provide a fair and immediate compensation package for farmers who cannot afford to feed their cattle?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada is treating Canadians fairly, no matter where they live across the country.

With regard to the waiving of the two week period associated with health realities associated with SARS, this has been applied equally across the country. Sixty-four Canadians in the western provinces are benefiting from it.

We are aggressively working with employers and employees to implement flexible standards of the work-sharing provisions as well as ensure that we are processing employment insurance claims as quickly as possible, because we know individuals who are laid off need those benefits urgently.

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, while the Prime Minister is busy congratulating himself, the fact is the western beef industry is still in crisis and needs help now.

Cattle producers are losing millions. Meat plant workers are losing their jobs. These people deserve more from their government than glib responses and buck-passing. They need help and they need it now.

When will the Prime Minister wake up and give some substantive help that is needed to plant workers and to cattle producers in the country? They are in crisis. Does the Prime Minister understand that?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Saint-Maurice
Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we know that and we are working on it. As I said, we have federal and provincial programs very often working together to compensate farmers in difficulties.

This situation is affecting people in Saskatchewan and Alberta. We are looking at what can be done to give them the proper access to the resources that are needed for them to get through this very difficult period.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Libby Davies Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have to say that sounds a lot like 100% Canada grade A bull.

It has been almost three months since SARS hit and there is still not a penny for hospitality workers nor a cent in disaster funding. Whether it is help for hotels and workers through job sharing or help for the provincial government itself, the Liberals have had the same response: no.

Maybe the Prime Minister can tell people in Toronto what is the use of electing only Liberals when none of them can deliver the help for a city that is in deep trouble?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Brant
Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member makes direct reference to work-sharing. I would like to advise her and the whole House that to date we have 94 work-sharing agreements in place in the city of Toronto.

I would like to congratulate those employers and employees who see this as a natural opportunity for them to deal with this difficult time.

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Howard Hilstrom Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, operating cash has run out for the cattle industry and it is losing one of its main players, the feedlot industry.

Contrary to what the Prime Minister has said, the agricultural policy framework does not work in this large financial crisis. Feedlot companies are not even covered by the APF.

We know the cattle industry has developed a compensation package and it is supported by the western premiers. Why has this government not accepted the industry's proposal or come forward with one of its own?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Portneuf
Québec

Liberal

Claude Duplain Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister responded to this very well earlier. Government stakeholders, starting with the Minister of Agriculture, are working with industry people and the provinces to find a solution to this problem as quickly as possible.

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Howard Hilstrom Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, representatives of the industry were down here last week and the government sent them home on Friday with nothing in their hands, not even a promise that it would do something. I do not accept that answer. What I want to see is the government stand and say that it intends to provide some financial help until that border is opened up and our exports start to flow again. Is there that commitment or not?

Agriculture
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Portneuf
Québec

Liberal

Claude Duplain Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, as we said earlier, we are working very hard on this matter. I would like to know whether the member told his constituents that last week while the committee was meeting with people from Saskatchewan here, they called for a vote to adjourn the House of Commons for the summer holiday. We missed the meeting.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

June 9th, 2003 / 2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-De- Beaupré—Île-D'Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, the report from Public Works and Government Services Canada refers to a tightly knit network of firms, a system that was well-honed over several years that were very profitable for the Liberal Party of Canada.

Does the Prime Minister realize that he is about to appoint to the Vatican a man, Alfonso Gagliano, who set up a system that benefited the Liberal Party, friends of the Liberal Party, their friends and their children, and his own son, Vincenzo Gagliano? Is the Prime Minister condoning all that by this appointment? Is that it?

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Wascana
Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I know nothing about any such appointment. Let me again say that the Government of Canada, from the very beginning on this file, has been thoroughly proactive and conscientious, pursuing every possible investigative technique to get to the bottom of what went on, to ensure that it is thoroughly exposed and that the appropriate corrective action is taken, up to and including police investigations and subsequent prosecutions.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

2:30 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-De- Beaupré—Île-D'Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister.

Instead of rewarding former minister Gagliano by appointing him to the Vatican, should the Prime Minister not call for an independent public inquiry to finally get to the bottom of the sponsorship scandal?