House of Commons Hansard #38 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was tlicho.

Topics

2 p.m.

The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada, and we will be led by the hon. member for Saint John.

[Editor's Note: Members sang the national anthem]

Agriculture
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister will be meeting with President Bush toward the end of this month.

Although there has been improvement in the BSE situation, I hope he will use this meeting, as he has in the past, to urge that the Canada-U.S. border be opened to all Canadian beef and other ruminant products, including livestock.

Most people now realize that the closing of the border had little or nothing to do with health or science.

A single animal with BSE that did not even get into the food chain in Canada and a single animal in the United States triggered a massive and disproportionate response.

It made little difference that both animals were rapidly traced. It made little difference that the U.S. and Canadian herds are genetically one and the same. It made little difference that international experts ruled that the border closing was unnecessary.

I urge the Prime Minister to convey such arguments to Mr. Bush and to stress that the border should be completely opened immediately.

The BSE crisis has been a tragedy for farm families across Canada.

Government of Canada
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, Canadians should be reminded about how this Liberal government has had to make serious corrections after their policies turned out to be highly inequitable and simply unfair.

First, the Liberals provided hep C funding for a very limited group of people: those infected between 1986 and 1990. Finally, they had to expand the funding program after an outcry from victims and their supporters.

Then the Liberals expanded the veterans independence program to support widows if their spouse passed away on or after May 12, 2003. However, all those widows whose spouses died prior to May 12 were simply disqualified from those programs. Following yet another outcry, the Liberals were forced to make changes again.

And now our troops. The Liberals have given needed tax breaks to some troops, just some troops, for serving in dangerous areas but denied many others the same consideration. Again, they had to retreat and expand the program after the troops demanded fair treatment.

The Liberals should apply the principle of equality in all cases and stop trying to cheat Canadians who need the help when they need it the most.

Member for Thornhill
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Sophia Leung Vancouver Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, over 25 year ago, the hon. member for Thornhill saw a need to improve her community. Being a woman of action, she made a public commitment to her family and neighbours and was elected to the North York municipal council in 1978.

The hon. member was elected to represent the people of Oriole in the Ontario legislature between 1985 to 1997. As a member of a provincial parliament, she became the first Jewish woman to become a minister in Canada.

In 1997 the hon. member was elected in the newly created riding of Thornhill. For seven years she has spoken with passion and conviction, representing the views of her constituents here in the House of Commons.

In 1999 the hon. member for Thornhill became the first Jewish woman to serve as a federal cabinet minister when she was named Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, and was appointed to cabinet a second time in 2002 as Minister of National Revenue.

For 25 years she has been a strong voice for her community and her--

Member for Thornhill
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Parkdale—High Park.

Badminton
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, on Monday, April 12, 2004, I had the privilege of participating in the opening ceremonies of the 2004 Junior National Badminton Championships hosted by the Boulevard Club in my riding.

Keith Arthur, head coach at the club, and Stan Viezner, the tournament chair, hosted perhaps the most successful junior badminton tournament to date.

The theme for this year's tournament was “Playin' Proud” which reflects the individual efforts that all participants have made in dedication, commitment, discipline and fitness in order to compete at this level.

The week long event featured 217 of the best Canadian badminton players in the under 14 and under 16 age categories, representing eight different provinces.

There were 10 main events, with singles, doubles and mixed categories in each group. Ontario managed the top spot with six gold medals.

I wish to congratulate all those who participated in the under 14 and under 16 Junior National Badminton Championships.

Compton—Stanstead
Statements By Members

April 21st, 2004 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

David Price Compton—Stanstead, QC

Mr. Speaker, let me talk about Compton--Stanstead, the jewel of Quebec's eastern townships.

Do members know that Compton--Stanstead is the home of some great Canadians? Why one of Canada's greatest prime ministers, the Right Hon. Louis St. Laurent, called it home. In fact our current Prime Minister is our neighbour.

Folksinger David Francy, who just won another Juno Award, writes his award winning music from the inspiration drawn from its beauty and cultural harmony.

A little-known fact is that Bishops College School is home to Canada's oldest cadet corps. This year it will be celebrating 125 years.

Did I mention it is also the home of the Hon. Jean Charest, the Premier of Quebec; the Hon. Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, the Deputy Premier; and the Hon. Pierre Reid, Quebec's Minister of Education?

Even Hollywood is getting in on the act. Veteran Hollywood actor Donald Sutherland has a home there.

On top of all that, Compton--Stanstead is surrounded by some of the finest members in the House, such as the member for Shefford, the member for Frontenac—Mégantic and the member for Brome—Missisquoi.

Mr. Speaker, even you have sampled this wonderful corner of Quebec, Compton—Stanstead.

Taxation
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Garry Breitkreuz Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, the release of Monday's Statistics Canada report on the birth rate in the country should send a loud, clear message to the Liberal government.

Families are being forced to have fewer children because they cannot afford to be a single income family and cannot afford day care or even find day care.

The solution is simple: provide equal tax breaks for parents who choose to raise their own children. Parents should be given the option to raise their children at home without incurring a financial penalty.

Do we not trust parents to make the right choices for the children they love? The benefits would be astounding if we did. We could see the job market open as parents leave formal employment in favour of raising their children, waiting lists at day care centres would evaporate, and the birth rate would most certainly increase.

Our children, however, would receive the greatest benefit, as they would be brought up in the most nurturing environment, their own homes.

Instead of punishing stay at home parents, why not provide equal tax treatment to those who choose their families over their careers?

Bill C-260
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

John McKay Scarborough East, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is my happy task to thank a number of colleagues and supporters for their assistance on Bill C-260, an act to amend the Hazardous Products Act (fire-safe cigarettes). As we know, to take a bill from first reading through to royal assent requires a lot of hard work, patience and cooperation.

I would like to thank the Deputy Prime Minister, who was then the Minister of Health, and her parliamentary secretary, the member for Madawaska—Restigouche. As well, when the current Minister of Health took over the portfolio, he immediately saw the health and safety benefits of the bill.

I also want to thank the critic for the Alliance Party, the member for Yellowhead, the critic from the Bloc Québécois, the member for Hochelaga—Maisonneuve, the critic for the NDP, the member for Churchill, and the critic from the Progressive Conservatives, the member for New Brunswick Southwest.

The chair of the health committee, the member for Oakville, was very helpful in freeing up time for the committee. In the Senate, the ultimate sponsor was Senator Morin, who was very helpful, as were Senator Smith and Senator Kenny. I am running out of time, Mr. Speaker, and I will have to--

Bill C-260
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Drummond.

Rail Transportation
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday I learned that as of Saturday, Canadian National will begin work to extend a siding into the city limits of Drummondville.

The line will be 12,000 feet long, will cross Notre-Dame street near downtown, and will make it possible for a train capable of carrying dangerous goods to remain there for a period of 30 to 60 minutes, and disrupt traffic.

CN's own representatives admit that Drummondville will be the only city expected to live with such a situation in a highly urbanized area.

The people of Drummond remember the rail accidents at Saint-Basile-le-Grand and Saint-Hilaire and fear for their safety and their environment.

For these reasons, I call on the Minister of Transport to intervene and have the authority already granted to Canadian Nation suspended, in order to force the company to rethink this project.

I am in favour of improved rail service, but not at the expense of the quality of life of the people of Drummond and their environment.

Louise Arbour and Guy Laliberté
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Claude Duplain Portneuf, QC

Mr. Speaker, this week it was revealed that two Quebeckers are on Time magazine's list of the 100 most influential people in the world.

Guy Laliberté, president and founder of the Cirque du Soleil, and Louise Arbour, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, have made their marks in their respective fields on a worldwide scale. With his creativity, Mr. Laliberté has reinvented the world of the circus. Young and old all over the world have been amazed by the theatricality, athleticism and parallel reality in the Cirque du Soleil.

Ms. Arbour is recognized throughout the world as a leading light in international law. This brave and tenacious woman was able to bring Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic to justice for war crimes in Bosnia and Kosovo.

Canadians are proud of their fellow citizens. I would like to thank and congratulate Ms. Arbour and Mr. Laliberté for their accomplishments.

Rural Communities
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Rick Borotsik Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, today I want to talk about a spirited member of my constituency, Deloraine's Lionel Laval, a volunteer whose work and community service have contributed to the growth and prosperity of southwestern Manitoba.

Lionel has always had a keen sense of community. Lending a hand to his church, school board, the Lions Club, numerous sports teams and the Chamber of Commerce, Lionel pitches in no matter what the project.

While Lionel Laval stands out in his community, he is not entirely a one of a kind person. In reality, he is the epitome of rural Canada, devoted to his community, its prosperity and its future. Rural Manitoba has many such devoted people.

Lionel would agree that rural life infuses people with a sense of belonging. It is a common thread that runs through rural Canada, a thread that weaves a strong fabric.

Lionel will be embarrassed when I tell him about this statement but that is just the kind of guy he is. Lionel does not do it for the glory or the recognition. What drives Lionel comes from somewhere deep inside him, a kind of pride found in the hearts of rural and small town Canadians.

Seniors
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Yolande Thibeault Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, some of Canada's best successes are its policies on seniors. They include, in particular, the retirement income system and programs to reduce the number of low income seniors by 90%.

We have improved seniors' quality of life, as the following facts prove.

We are the only G-7 country with a perfectly balanced public pension plan, the long term sustainability of which has been proven by experts.

Seniors in Canada benefit from our five year plan to cut taxes and grant over $2 billion per year in tax credits, such as the age credit and the pension income credit.

We fund the New Horizons program for seniors to enable them to lead active lives and contribute to their communities.

There are fewer seniors living below the poverty line than any other group in Canada. This Liberal government believes that it is critical for seniors to remain in good health—

Seniors
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Vancouver East.