House of Commons Hansard #18 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tlicho.

Topics

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government Act
Government Orders

10:45 a.m.

Conservative

James Rajotte Edmonton—Leduc, AB

Mr. Speaker, I want to follow up on this because I do not know if I was clear in my question.

If we take a look at, for instance, the Mackenzie Valley pipeline, there is some disagreement now. The federal government is willing to go ahead but there is some disagreement with respect to the Deh Cho in the north. In terms of economic investment, the government needs to clarify.

Suppose there is a disagreement between either a provincial government and the federal government or between the Tlicho and this agreement, which would be paramount? Who, in the end, has the authority to make that decision?

To be honest, as I read the legislation and the treaty itself, I find them confusing. I do not find which level of government would be given paramountcy in these types of tough decisions. I would like the government member to highlight for us where in the agreement we can find which level of government would be paramount in issues of tough jurisdiction where one or more levels of government disagree.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government Act
Government Orders

10:45 a.m.

Liberal

Michael John Savage Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, this agreement does state that Tlicho laws would be concurrent with federal and territorial legislation. However the Tlicho have agreed that any federal legislation would prevail over Tlicho laws. I assume that is the question the hon. member is asking. The agreement states, “There is no paramount authority over the federal Crown in relation to matters concerning the Tlicho”.

Tlicho Land Claims and Self-Government Act
Government Orders

10:45 a.m.

Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca
B.C.

Liberal

Keith Martin Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to speak to Bill C-14, which I do support.

Many of my hon. colleagues had much to say about this and I will not restate their points, but I will talk about it in the context of first nations, Inuit, Métis and northerners identity, self-sufficiency and treatment within Confederation. In my opinion the bill is more than appropriate and timely. It is absolutely essential.

Bill C-14 would enable the Tlicho to affect their environment and the changes in a better way because they are most familiar with their local conditions. At long last the Tlicho will be guaranteed representation on land, water and renewable resource boards and within community governments. They will have control over the land and resource management, aboriginal language and culture.

By exercising their inherent rights, the Tlicho will have the power to assume control over their resources once and for all. They gain the right to grant interests and licences and they gain the freedom to establish partnerships and conduct business according to their needs, while at the same time respecting interests that already exist. I think that is an essential point to the good question that was posed by the opposition that this bill respects the interests of groups that are already there.

The Tlicho have ably demonstrated that they can manage their affairs responsibly and, indeed, profitably. I urge hon. members here today to remember that the Tlicho are one of the most prosperous aboriginal communities in the north. They have proven to be both forward thinking and industrious. They constructed and now run an airport, take a lead role in the management of their schools and have built and operated both senior centres and a long term care facility.

They have proven to be able and fair negotiators, and have successfully negotiated delivery agreements on a number of matters and, in particular, in working with the Northwest Territories. They have signed a number of mutually beneficial agreements with private sector firms, chief among them the far reaching impact that the Ekati Diamond Mine deal has struck.

The Tlicho have long experience in devising and supporting fruitful partnerships and alliances, partly due to their sharing nature and partly because of their world view. They and their society understand that long term health and prosperity lies directly with their ability to cooperate with those around them.

In the private sector their agreements have resulted in a wealth of economic and social benefits, including jobs and training opportunities. The resulting economic activity in Tlicho communities supports a wide range of social services. Indeed, when we consider this agreement, it springs from a group of communities working together in the spirit of collaboration. It is no surprise that Bill C-14 itself is the result of extensive and fruitful collaboration by many groups.

I am aware, though, that sometimes the results of public consultation have been criticized and overstated. In fact, we all know that sometimes consultation and collaboration have been far less than successful and merely an exercise of having a lot of meetings. However that was not the case in this set of negotiations that have resulted in Bill C-14.

The consultation process, in short, was exemplary. First, it was conducted as the combined efforts of the Tlicho, the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Government of Canada. This coherent tripartite approach ensured proper representation of all three levels of government from the beginning and, by unanimous agreement, the process was refined so that we have the formal agreement we have now.

Open house sessions were held in four Tlicho communities, as well as Yellowknife, and feedback was listened to and incorporated. What is important is that the public at large was informed about this process and had opportunities to have input all the way along.

In the summer of 2002, when the Government of Canada announced the withdrawal of 39,000 square kilometres of land that would eventually become Tlicho land, widespread public consultation occurred again with interest groups and representations from all three governments were brought to bear.

Another public information session occurred in September of that year when it was decided that further consultations were necessary to ensure that the public was completely informed and had ample time to discuss and respond to all these proposals. The chief negotiators had set up a three month information exchange period with interest groups so that questions would be asked and answers would be forthcoming.

It is worth noting that during these exchange periods, tangential discussions between the Tlicho and the Akaitcho Treaty 8 Dene gained considerable momentum. To their credit, the Tlicho were diligent negotiators. During these information exchange periods, in which the Tlicho agreement was hammered out, it was refined in a number of areas as a result of these negotiations so that by March 2003 the ratification process was formerly commenced.

This is a remarkable achievement of public consultation. It makes clear the intention of the local aboriginal people to be heard and respected. High public turnouts attested to this fact. Moreover, wide public consultation occurred throughout this process. People throughout the north had their views heard, respected and incorporated. That was been important. Some concerns had been expressed by members about the process.

The Tlicho are clearly ready to fulfill their obligation. They have been working toward this agreement for more than decade. They have staged hundreds of consultation sessions and have secured the support of a range of public and private sector groups. Now the Tlicho are ready to establish and maintain a democratic government. This is very important. I think it will address a number of the questions that will come from the opposition.

The Tlicho are ready to establish and maintain a democratic government within the constitutional framework of Canada. Their government will respect Canadian law, fully recognizing that the Tlicho, as are Canadians everywhere, will be subject to federal laws and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

My colleague on the other side asked a very legitimate question about the issue of who would be in control and which law would be of paramount importance. It is the laws of Canada. I can reference specifically within the agreement. Chapter 7 has very specific references as to which laws are paramount within the context of any conflicts that may occur between what is in the agreement for the Tlicho people and other levels of government. Article 7.7.2 explicitly states that the federal legislation will prevail over Tlicho legislation where there is any conflict. I hope this will answer the member's question specifically.

Many of us have had the opportunity to work with aboriginal people. We have seen what occurs in aboriginal communities. We have seen the devastation within some aboriginal communities, which has been wrought for such a long time. We have seen the pain, suffering, the social dislocations which have occurred and the terrible social parameters that occur with aboriginal people both on and off reserve.

Domestically, I know we are committed to change the historical problems that have occurred with aboriginal people and change the horrible social parameters in some communities, such as unemployment, substance abuse, the lack of skills training, fetal alcohol syndrome, dislocated communities, communities where they desperately need and want to work with non-aboriginal communities to ensure that together we can enjoy the fruits of our wonderful country.

We on this side are committed to doing this. I have no doubt that members on all sides want to work with aboriginal communities to change those parameters, to rectify those problems and ensure that aboriginal people will be able to teach us the strengths of their cultures and their communities. Together we will learn about each other and will enrich each other. Together we will have a stronger country. Together we are a stronger people. Together we are culturally enforced. Together we will improve the social welfare of the people and societies of which we are part. I know that we are committed to that goal.

Women Entrepreneurs
Statements By Members

10:55 a.m.

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, encouraging and supporting women's entrepreneurship is a key priority for the government. Today, on the first anniversary of the report of the Prime Minister's task force on women entrepreneurs, which I had the opportunity to chair, I am pleased to inform the House that this priority is indeed being realized.

In particular, I would draw the attention of the House to the event concluding in Ottawa today on “Sustaining the Momentum: An Economic Forum for Women Entrepreneurs”. This forum, co-sponsored by Industry Canada and the Eric Sprott School of Business at Carleton University, brings together leading thinkers in the public, private and academic sectors to consider ways to foster the development of women's entrepreneurship in Canada.

I hope all members of the House will join me in recognizing the importance of the contribution made by women entrepreneurs in advancing economic competitiveness and a high overall quality of life in communities throughout Canada.

Toward this end, the government looks forward to hearing and advancing considerations of the views and recommendations from this forum.

2004 Summer Olympic Games
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Conservative

Guy Lauzon Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise today to pay tribute to Olympic gymnast Melanie Banville. Melanie is 17 years old and hails from Long Sault in the riding I am proud to represent, Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry.

Melanie was one of only two Canadians to reach the individual all round final in gymnastics at the summer Olympic Games in Athens. Only the top 24 women gymnasts in the world advanced to the all round final. This achievement is even more remarkable considering that it was Melanie's first summer Olympics and that she had just recovered from two shoulder injuries in two months that forced her to miss three weeks of training.

Long Sault is proud, Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry is proud and Canada is proud of Melanie. I look forward to following her promising career in gymnastics. I know her athletic performance and personal grace will represent Canada well at future Olympic Games.

Culinary Olympics
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Liberal

Shawn Murphy Charlottetown, PE

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House today to announce that a team of young chefs from Prince Edward Island has brought back a gold medal for Canada from the Culinary Olympics in Germany this week.

The team members study at the Atlantic Tourism and Hospitality Institute in Charlottetown. They were competing against more than 700 chefs from 31 countries in tests of culinary skills. The team is made up of students Kreg Graham, Rebecca Hutchings, Mark Sheehy, Gerald Sharpe, Tommy Archibald, Kelly Clark, Natalie Fortier, Gillian Gilfoy and team coach Hans Anderegg.

These students come from every region of the country and have been achieving world class results as they compete in culinary events around Canada and in Europe.

Please join me in congratulating the members of team Canada on their gold medal performance and for showcasing Prince Edward Island's culinary institute on the global stage.

École du Bois-Joli
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Bloc

Guy André Berthier—Maskinongé, QC

Mr. Speaker, recently, the École du Bois-Joli, in Trois-Rivières-Ouest, lost its right to use its student radio for educational purposes, this for reasons that seemed mysterious. We looked into this seemingly unjustified measure and we took the necessary actions, so that the student radio could resume its activities.

I also want to mention the hard work done by the media, the students, the parents and the school management to settle this issue.

Now that students have regained the right to carry on their educational activities through the student radio, to the satisfaction of the whole community, I wish to thank all those involved in the resolution of this matter, and I also want to underline how much these people care about students.

Bell Canada
Statements By Members

11 a.m.

Liberal

Lui Temelkovski Oak Ridges—Markham, ON

Mr. Speaker, over the course of the past several months numerous constituents, myself included, have encountered issues with the service of Bell Canada. As one of Canada's largest providers of telecommunications services, it is imperative that the service be reliable and professional.

The introduction of what is termed “Bell Bundles” also introduced billing and service difficulties for customers. For instance, customers are not being billed the way they have requested or told they would be billed; exceedingly long waiting times for customer support services; harassing customers to take unnecessary services; and customer support representatives who are not informed regarding the other portions of the bundle services, ultimately resulting in frustration and very poor service for users of Bell.

Given the importance of telecommunication services in the country, I look forward to a quick resolution to this problem.

Liberal Party of Canada
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Mr. Speaker, recently the revenue minister delivered what may be the ultimate statement in Liberal ethics. Asked why he ignored Treasury Board rules in appointing Gordon Feeney as chair of Canada Post, the minister replied that those were just suggestions and not regulations. All of a sudden, there is a lot of Liberal behaviour that is becoming quite clear.

The Prime Minister said he would not call an election until he got to the bottom of the sponsorship scandal. I guess he only suggested that possibility. The Prime Minister also vowed he would end cronyism. Again, it appears this was only a suggestion.

I have a suggestion for my Liberal colleagues. They should keep their resumés handy because after the next federal election, the voters will make the suggestion that they look for clear opportunities in the private sector.

Small Business Week
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Jean-Claude D'Amours Madawaska—Restigouche, NB

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to take this opportunity to recognize the contribution of the people who received awards last week, as part of Small Business Week, in the Restigouche region.

First, I want to congratulate Irène Doyle, from the region of Campbellton, who received an award as an exceptional individual in the Restigouche. Needless to say, people like Mrs. Doyle are making a significant contribution to our communities.

Finally, I want to congratulate Alain and Adrien Arseneault, of the Adrien Arseneault sawmill, who received the 2004 entrepreneurship award for the Restigouche. Their business, in the Balmoral region, is making a great contribution to the economic development of the riding, and this award is well-deserved by these business people and their team.

La Société des fabricants régionaux du Saguenay—Lac-Saint-Jean
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Bloc

Robert Bouchard Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak on behalf of the constituents of Chicoutimi—Le Fjord to salute a dynamic network of entrepreneurs from my riding and my region.

La Société des fabricants régionaux du Saguenay—Lac-Saint-Jean, known as SFR, is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and has nearly 100 heads of manufacturing companies as members. The goal of the society is to promote goods made in the Saguenay—Lac Saint-Jean region and it also develops strategies to face the challenge of globalization.

The Saguenay—Lac Saint-Jean region is going through difficult economic times. And yet I believe the initiative of these businesspeople shows that we have dynamic human resources and that we believe in our abilities.

Congratulations to the SFR.

Health Sciences
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Russ Powers Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Westdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, recently I was honoured to participate in the official opening of the Institute of Molecular Medicine and Health in its new home, the Michael G. DeGroote Centre for Learning and Discovery at McMaster University, an education institution that I was employed at for over 25 years.

The new institute for innovative research and gene therapeutics, under the stewardship of Dr. Jack Gauldie, is situated within one of the most advanced institutions of learning in Canada, indeed in the discipline of health sciences research worldwide.

The new centre will house one of the finest virology and immunology groups in Canada and will surely play a central role in positioning McMaster to take its place at the forefront of discovery.

Canadian Forces
Statements By Members

October 29th, 2004 / 11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Merv Tweed Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to highlight a very important event that will be happening in my constituency. November 13th will mark the official welcoming ceremonies of the 2nd Battalion of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry to CFB Shiloh. Preparations have been taking place since the move was announced, and the 700 soldiers and their families moved in over this past summer.

The residents of Brandon--Souris have welcomed the Princess Pats with open arms, reaching out to them and making them feel at home in their new surroundings. Soldiers and their families have reciprocated by becoming active in and bringing a great deal of energy and enthusiasm to their new communities.

As member of Parliament for Brandon--Souris, I am very pleased to welcome these honourable men and women in uniform and their families to the riding. I look forward to meeting with them at the official welcoming ceremonies on November 13.

Coast Guard
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Ken Boshcoff Thunder Bay—Rainy River, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Canadian Coast Guard on the addition of its new search and rescue cutter, Cape Chaillon to Thunder Bay harbour station at Keefer terminal.

The Canadian Coast Guard search and rescue program commitment to serve and protect lives in the maritime environment has search and rescue crews working out of Thunder Bay harbour from April until December each year, out in weather conditions most of us would only watch on television.

I would at this time also like to commend the good men and women who crew vessels like the Cape Chaillon for their bravery and skill, and recognize their contribution to the safety and well-being of all Canadians.

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians from coast to coast to coast are very strong supporters of public broadcasting. Yet for years the Liberal Party has used the board of the CBC as a dumping ground for pals and payers to the party. Since 1936, 90% of the appointments to the CBC have been buddies of the governing party. What a dismal record.

The heritage committee has come forth with recommendations for setting up a transparent nomination procedure for CBC appointments. A new president is being appointed and Canadians are asking the government to turn over a new leaf.

Unfortunately it looks like the Liberals will be singing from the same old songbook and so the long list of Liberal appointments, anointments and reappointments will continue. We deserve better.

Stop using our institutions as a retirement home for political cronies.