House of Commons Hansard #29 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was victims.

Topics

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:10 p.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I want to make a couple of points for your consideration as you consider what is before you. I think the one point that should be made very clear as I look at the transcripts here is that the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration did not make a statement. What she did was ask a question. In her response, she said, “I guess I should have asked, did he work on the campaign?”The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration never said the person worked on the campaign, as the hon. member seems to indicate. In fact, the implication of her remark is that she did not know whether this person worked on the campaign.

While I do see that the hon. member is also making allegations of wrongdoing, in this House I might add, he too should wait for the Ethics Commissioner to report. I think the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration has already said that she would be prepared to make that report public. At that point, I think the House would have the fullness of information and be able to see whether there has been any wrongdoing.

I believe the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration would submit to you, Mr. Speaker, that there has been none.

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:10 p.m.

The Speaker

I will take the matter under advisement in light of the comments made by the hon. member for Central Nova and by the government House leader, review the transcript of the proceedings on Friday in light of what has been said and get back to the House in due course.

The hon. member for Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord on another question of privilege.

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:10 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Charlevoix—Montmorency, QC

Mr. Speaker, as you know, following the June 28 general election, the deputation in the House of Commons changed substantially. Out of the 308 members who are currently sitting here, 201 were re-elected, 101 were elected for the first time, and 6 made a return to federal politics.

Of course, it is easy to figure out that about 100 members who sat here during the 37th Parliament are no longer here. Whether they decided not to seek another term, were defeated during the nomination process or the general election, the fact remains that these former colleagues are no longer members of Parliament.

However, we were recently taken aback to learn that one of these former MPs, Liberal member Serge Marcil, who represented the riding of Beauharnois—Salaberry in the previous Parliament, does not seem to have taken note of the results of the last general election.

Despite the fact that the riding is now represented by a Bloc Québécois member, Mr. Marcil continues to use the title of member of Parliament and also the addresses of his old offices in the riding and in Ottawa, as shown in an advertisement that includes a picture and that is entitled “Serge Marcil, Member of Parliament for Beauharnois—Salaberry”.

This advertisement was part of a booklet published following the last general election, which was distributed to us on November 12, four and a half months after the election. At the end of my question of privilege, I will seek the unanimous consent of the House to table this booklet.

If I may, I would like to draw the hon. members' attention to excerpts from Marleau and Montpetit's House of Commons Procedure and Practice , dealing with a matter that is exactly the same as this one today.

In chapter 3, on privileges and immunities, under “Freedom from Obstruction, Interference, Intimidation and Molestation”, reference is made to a decision made by one of your predecessors, Speaker Bosley, on May 6, 1985. For your information, the evidence on which this decision was based is the following.

On April 25, 1985, Andrew Witer, the member for Parkdale—High Park, rose on a question of privilege relating to an advertisement which appeared in a Toronto based newspaper. The ad in question identified Jesse Flis, the incumbent's predecessor, as member of Parliament for Parkdale—High Park, listing the address and phone number of Mr. Flis' former constituency office.

A motion by Mr. Witer to refer the matter to the Standing Committee on Privileges and Elections was then agreed to. In this matter, Speaker Bosley ruled, and I quote from Marleau and Montpetit:

—there was a prima facie question of privilege in a case where a newspaper advertisement identified another person as a Member of Parliament rather than the sitting Member.

Moreover, in his decision, Speaker Bosley stated:

It should go without saying that a Member of Parliament needs to perform his functions effectively and that anything tending to cause confusion as to a Member’s identity creates the possibility of an impediment to the fulfilment of that Member’s functions. Any action which impedes or tends to impede a Member in the discharge of his duties is a breach of privilege. There are ample citations and precedents to bear this out.

That is what the quote from Speaker Bosley said.

Therefore, should you decide that my question is in order, I would put forward the appropriate motion, which I have drafted and have here in my hand. Also, I would seek the unanimous consent of the House to table the booklet.

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:15 p.m.

The Speaker

Does the hon. member for Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord have the unanimous consent of the House to table this booklet?

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:15 p.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I really do not have anything to add. It is the first time that this has come to my attention. Therefore, with the consent to table, we would look at it, and look forward to adding something if required at a later date.

Privilege
Oral Question Period

3:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The Chair will also want to review the material that the hon. member has tabled.

After examining this issue and looking at what the hon. member said today and what others, if any, may have to say, I will get back to the House with a decision regarding this matter.

Government Response to Petitions
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Beauséjour
New Brunswick

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour pursuant to Standing Order 36(8) to table, in both official languages, the government's response to one petition.

Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

November 22nd, 2004 / 3:20 p.m.

Conservative

John Williams Edmonton—St. Albert, AB

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present the fourth report of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts concerning the main estimates 2004-05, vote 20 under finance, referred to the committee on Friday, October 8, 2004.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Conservative

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to rise to present two petitions to the House. The first is one in a series of petitions that I continue to present on behalf of our military families.

The petitioners wish to draw to the attention of the House, and Canadians at large, that the Canadian Forces Housing Agency provides a valuable service by allowing families to live in a military community and have access to services to address their specific needs. However, many of those homes on our bases across the land are substandard to acceptable living conditions, and their rent keeps rising every year.

Therefore, the petitioners call upon Parliament to immediately suspend any future rent increases for accommodation provided by the Canadian Forces Housing Agency until such time as the Government of Canada makes substantive improvements to the living conditions of housing provided for our military families.

The petition comes from the citizens of Windsor.

Petitions
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Conservative

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, my second petition is from my riding of Prince George—Peace River. It is mainly from citizens of the city of Dawson Creek.

The petitioners wish to draw to the attention of the House to the fact that our children need protection from sexual exploitation. They therefore call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to raise the age of consent for sexual interaction, from 14 years of age to 18 years of age.

Questions on the Order Paper
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Beauséjour
New Brunswick

Liberal

Dominic LeBlanc Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the following questions will be answered today: Nos. 4 and 12

Question No. 4
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Conservative

Carol Skelton Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, SK

What public safety and emergency preparedness plans does the federal government have to safeguard the capacity of treated water reserves for cities with populations over 50,000?

Question No. 4
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Etobicoke North
Ontario

Liberal

Roy Cullen Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, the government takes the protection of critical infrastructure of all kinds in this country very seriously. We are working with the provinces, such as Saskatchewan, and the private sector and sector associations, including the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association. A paper outlining the government’s position on key elements of a Canadian strategy on critical infrastructure protection, CIP, was released on November 10, 2004 at http://www.ocipep.gc.ca/critical/nciap/positionpap_e.asp.

The Government of Canada has taken important steps to respond to the increasingly complex and dangerous threat environment that exists since the horrific events of September 11, 2001. On December 12, 2003 the Prime Minister announced a series of organizational changes that contribute to more effective integration of security efforts including: the appointment of a Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, with a new department supporting the core functions of security and intelligence, border services, immigration enforcement and emergency management; and the appointment of a national security adviser to the Prime Minister to improve coordination and integration of security efforts among government departments.

In the past few years, the government has funded over $8 billion in additional investments to address our key security gaps. More remains to be done. On April 27 of this year, Canada’s first-ever comprehensive national security policy was issued. The policy articulates core national security interests and proposes a framework for addressing threats to Canadians. The framework will be supported by $690 million of new money to address priority gaps in the Government’s areas of responsibility.

The government is moving forward deliberately with this plan, but recognizes the seriousness of the challenge and the sustained nature of the effort required. A fully integrated security system ensures that we can more effectively respond to existing threats and quickly adapt to new ones. The system is to be fully connected to key partners such as provinces, territories, communities and the private sector. The system begins with a comprehensive threat assessment that provides both tactical and strategic information about risks to Canada. Consequently, the Government produces comprehensive threat reports, which are made available to those who require them.

Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada, PSEPC, supported by the national security adviser will ensure the development and implementation of the security system to ensure that Canada is prepared for and can respond to current and future threats.

PSEPC also has a role in research and development related to critical infrastructure protection. PSEPC’s work includes a research report entitled “Water, Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Management”, see http://www.ocipep.gc.ca/research/resactivites/CI/2002-D016_e.asp. PSEPC also collaborates and assists the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association, or CWWA, http://www.cwwa.ca, and its members. For example, PSEPC funded the production of two guidebooks on best management practice for water systems and for wastewater systems respectively. PSEPC commends the CWWA membership for its initiatives in enhancing the security measures of its members’ facilities.

With respect to a terrorist or vandalism threat, it is communities that are responsible for doing all possible to protect their facilities, based on current threat information. The federal role is to provide threat information in order that communities can make an informed decision on water protection. The federal government through PSEPC continually works to improve capacity in sharing threat related information with critical infrastructure owners and operators.

Finally, Infrastructure Canada also publishes a number of municipal infrastructure national guides, many of which relate to water safety. A listing of the many InfraGuides is available at http://www.infraguide.ca/bestPractices/PublishedBP_e.asp.

Subsequent to these federal measures, water protection in communities remains a provincial/municipal responsibility. In Saskatchewan, the province established the Saskatchewan Watershed Authority to manage and protect water quality and quantity. Its website is http://www.swa.ca. There are many federal agencies that share some form of responsibility for water safety in Saskatchewan including Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration, http://www.agr.gc.ca/pfra/water/intro_e.htm.

Question No. 12
Routine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Conservative

Bill Casey North Nova, NS

With respect to the recent fire aboard Canada's submarine HMCS Chicoutimi: ( a ) what steps did the government take to retrieve both HMCS Chicoutimi and the crew, including a description of what personnel, equipment and assistance were deployed and/or offered to the British armed forces in support of the rescue operations; and ( b ) which tests were conducted on HMCS Chicoutimi prior to its departure for Halifax, Nova Scotia?