House of Commons Hansard #45 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was parks.

Topics

Railway Safety
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Pallister Portage—Lisgar, MB

Mr. Speaker, there is an old baseball saying, “you can't hit what you can't see”, but when it comes to trains, one most certainly can. Fewer than one in four Canadian train cars has proper reflectors and Canadians are killed in preventable car-train collisions regularly because they simply did not see the trains. The railway companies like to blame driver error, but cars, trucks and farm implements have had to have reflectors for years, why not trains?

My urban colleagues need to understand that the rural crossings where most of these accidents occur are not equipped with flashing lights, with bells, with whistles, or with guard arms. The fact is no one in the Conservative Party is asking the government to equip each of the 50,000 uncontrolled crossings in such a manner. What we are asking for is that reflectors be placed on all trains.

I want the minister to immediately implement a rule which requires the immediate implementation of reflectors. The United States is planning a reflector program that will be phased in over 10 years. That is not acceptable to the Conservative Party. We--

Railway Safety
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Davenport.

Endangered Species
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Charles Caccia Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is most unfortunate that the first recommendation under the new species at risk law by the scientific panel, COSEWIC, aimed at protecting 12 species of cod and other aquatic species has been postponed by the Minister of the Environment. Apparently the Fisheries Council has intervened and objected to the professional opinion of COSEWIC, which is the scientific panel whose only motivation is to protect endangered species.

I urge the Minister of the Environment to reconsider his decision, or at least accelerate the consultative process so as to reduce to a minimum the damage caused to these aquatic species at risk.

International Labour Day
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Bloc

Monique Guay Laurentides, QC

Mr. Speaker, May 1 is a day to celebrate workers. Let us take this occasion to pay tribute to the women and men who work every day to build a better world, a fairer world, a world that lives up to our aspirations and ambitions.

Valiant struggles over the years have made it possible to obtain better working conditions, but there is a great deal left to do. We think of the need to add anti-scab measures to the Canada Labour Code or the urgent need to review the regulations covering precautionary cessation of work for pregnant and nursing women, in order to help them have healthy babies.

My thoughts today are with the employees of Bauer Nike, in my riding of Laurentides, who are in a time of uncertainty. Along with the firm's survival committee, I will spare no effort to ensure that these people keep their jobs.

Workers can count on the Bloc Quebecois to make their voices heard and to defend their rights in order to improve their quality of life.

Bill C-250
Statements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to applaud the work of Canada's Parliament in passing Bill C-250 this week. Bill C-250 will amend the Criminal Code by adding sexual orientation to the list of groups protected by the hate crimes provisions of the Criminal Code.

The bill is a significant step toward protecting Canadians from hate based attacks. Bill C-250 will not infringe on the freedom of speech, nor will it limit the rights of individuals to disagree on lifestyle issues, nor will it criminalize religious text. What Bill C-250 does is to ensure equal protection under the Criminal Code regardless of sexual orientation.

I would like to applaud the good work of the members of the House who helped pass the bill. My thanks to all who helped pass the bill.

Selkirk--Interlake Constituency
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Howard Hilstrom Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, for what may be my last S. O. 31 due to the rumours of an imminent election call, I would like to tell the people of Selkirk--Interlake what a pleasure it has been to serve as their voice in Ottawa.

For the information of the House, Selkirk--Interlake is populated by Canadians with a tremendous diversity in ethnic backgrounds. We live in harmony with each other and work hard to make our region, our province and our country a better place in which to live. Agriculture, commercial fishing, light manufacturing industries, tourism, along with jobs in all economic sectors of Manitoba's economy are how we earn our living. Artistic efforts, along with many cultural activities enrich our lives.

Geographically the riding contains the largest southern portions of beautiful Lake Winnipeg and Lake Manitoba. Beautiful ranch and farmland, along with dynamic small towns nestled in a clean environment, make it a wonderful place to live.

Our future success as a region called Selkirk--Interlake is totally dependent on the opportunities for our children and grandchildren. Our youth and their futures are why I have spent the last seven years as the MP for Selkirk--Interlake doing the best I could, with my wife Faye by my side.

Bloc Quebecois
Statements By Members

April 30th, 2004 / 11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Claude Drouin Beauce, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the hon. member for Laurentides suggested that the Quebec caucus of this government was lacking arguments to prove the uselessness of Bloc Quebecois members in this House. Our government does not need arguments to demonstrate this reality. The empty rhetoric and the apathy of Bloc Quebecois members tell the tale.

The hon. member for Rimouski--Neigette-et-la Mitis will agree with me, since she once said that her caucus was particularly good at scoring in its own net. The hon. member for Laurier—Sainte-Marie will also surely agree with me, after telling the media that he cannot prevent the Prime Minister from being re-elected, and after admitting to the daily Le Soleil that the Bloc Quebecois never does anything good and takes its orders from its head office, which is the Parti Quebecois.

Finally, our government is so acutely aware of Quebec's distinctiveness that a candidates manual was specially prepared for our Quebec caucus and will be distributed at the appropriate time.

I can assure the House that we will have no problems proving—

Bloc Quebecois
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Dartmouth.

Cathryn Prince
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Wendy Lill Dartmouth, NS

Mr. Speaker, when the rookie NDP members of Parliament arrived here in 1997, we were welcomed by the smiling face of Cathryn Prince. She helped us through our first days, eased our fears, talked about the mechanics of the job and inspired us even more about the importance of the House of Commons.

Cathryn loved this place. She worked on the Hill for over 25 years with a number of NDP MPs and with the public service. Cathryn believed passionately in the principles of social democracy, the union movement and the importance of reaching out and helping people. She had a twinkle in her eye and a warm smile. An incredible number of people counted her as a trusted, loyal friend, so great was her generosity of spirit.

Cathryn was also a loving mother, sister, wife, and an especially loving grandmother.

Cathryn Prince passed away on March 10 with one of her sons by her side. She passed from this life the way she lived it, feeling the love of her friends and her family.

Today in the House we want to celebrate the lasting contributions of Cathryn Prince.

Sustainable Development
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Serge Marcil Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, this week, the Minister of the Environment attended the session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development to discuss world challenges related to water.

It is estimated that diseases communicated by undrinkable water are costing in excess of $250 million annually. Economic progress and quality of life in developing countries are increasingly restricted by the poor quality and the lack of water. Access to water can become a source of conflict and a threat to peace and security.

As the Prime Minister mentioned yesterday in his speech delivered in Washington, there is an urgent need for the international system and multilateral institutions to operate more efficiently.

This is why Canada is playing a key role to strengthen the United Nations Environment Programme and to improve the United Nations' ability to deal with the issue of water.

Also, the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment will examine the best way for Canada to meet its international commitments regarding the development of integrated water management plans by the year 2005.

Bill C-250
Statements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Andy Burton Skeena, BC

Mr. Speaker, this week the Liberal majority in the Senate passed Bill C-250. It was indeed a sad day in Canadian politics.

Many of my constituents in Skeena and I as their MP vigorously and vociferously opposed the bill as it moved through the House of Commons. The Liberal majority, with the help of both the Bloc Quebecois and the NDP, supported Bill C-250 on its way to the Senate.

A government that supports such biased and undemocratic legislation as Bill C-250 does not deserve to be in office, much less re-elected.

I urge all Canadians to remember which candidates stood for freedom of speech, freedom of religion and freedom of expression in this country whenever the upcoming election is called.

Social Economy
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Eleni Bakopanos Ahuntsic, QC

Mr. Speaker, on April 22, I had the pleasure of presiding the national round table on the social economy hosted by the Department of Human Resources and Skills Development, in my role as the parliamentary secretary with special responsibility for the social economy.

The national round table discussion allowed me to meet with various stakeholders from across the country. I am pleased to have been given the opportunity to work with them and receive their views on key social economic issues.

Comments by such participants as Nancy Neamtam, from the Chantier de l'économie sociale du Québec, Rupert Downing, from the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet), David Driscoll, from the VanCity Community Foundation in British Columbia, Réjean Laflamme, from the Conseil canadien de la coopération, and many others, will enable us to refine our strategy to encourage even more growth in the social economy in coming years.

Our government and our Prime Minister are committed to the social economy. We will continue to build on the measures announced in the Speech from the Throne and in budget 2004 in order to achieve our common goal of building communities rich in social assets.

House of Commons
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Roy H. Bailey Souris—Moose Mountain, SK

Mr. Speaker, it appears that the 37th Parliament of Canada will soon come to an end. Many MPs will return to their homes in the various provinces with memories of having served their constituents here in the House.

My memories are many. I am grateful for the many friends I have on both sides of the House, but the friendships extend beyond that. What about the pages, the security staff, the personnel who help on committees, the people in the cafeterias and at the post office, and the bus drivers? The list goes on. They are all wonderful people who greet us daily with cheerfulness.

I will leave behind many wonderful people. As the MP of a huge rural constituency, I want to say thanks to them for their great support.

As I say goodbye, I offer my best wishes to all those people. I hope that perchance we will meet again somewhere, some time. If not, they will be part of my memories for the rest of my life.

Year of Acadia
Statements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Bloc

Stéphane Bergeron Verchères—Les Patriotes, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Wednesday we unanimously adopted a motion by the member for West Nova declaring 2004 the Year of Acadia. It is appropriate to make such a solemn gesture, in this the 400th anniversary year of the founding of Acadia. My colleague benefited from the enthusiastic support of the Bloc Quebecois members, “separatist” though they are. We would have liked to have the same kind of support from him at the time of the debate on Motion M-382, following the royal proclamation last December.

Although it is appropriate to recognize the arrival of Samuel de Champlain in the Americas, 400 years ago, I believe we would also render justice to history by also pointing out the determining role played by Pierre Du Gua, Sieur de Mons, in the founding of Acadia.

Curiously, the Liberals have chosen the end of April, with an election looming, to make this gesture. I had put forward the proposal by the general assembly of the Société nationale de l'Acadie here in this House on June 12, 2003. As in the case of the motion recognizing National Acadian Day, this manoeuvre appears to have been carried out with the sole purpose of trying to make the public forget the Liberal government's dubious role in the debate on acknowledging the deportation.

Government Contracts
Oral Question Period

11:15 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the government finally released some of the information surrounding the secret unity slush fund.

The Prime Minister previously claimed he knew nothing about this honey pot. I quote the current Minister of Finance who said “the current Prime Minister has not made any use of that particular reserve”. However, the chart shows that the Department of Finance got $1 million.

Would the Minister of Finance clear up this contradiction when he said the former finance minister did not get any money, but the chart shows $1 million?