House of Commons Hansard #46 of the 37th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was aboriginal.

Topics

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, the Fisheries Resource Conservation Council has made recommendations to the minister about the state of the groundfish stocks in the Gulf of St. Lawrence for 2004-05. Based on this advice, does the minister intend to approve a fishery in both the northern gulf and the southern gulf for the coming fishing season?

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Halifax West
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, the FRCC is an arm's length, independent conservation council, as my friend knows.

I received the report last week and would like to thank the council for its good work. I will review the recommendations and make my decision in the near future.

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, last year the FRCC recommended a small fishery in both areas. The former minister refused to open the north gulf but he opened the southern gulf, even opening 4Vn to dragging. So much for conservation.

Will the minister guarantee he will make his decision based on the advice of the FRCC and other scientific sources to help fishermen, and not political opportunism to help his friends as we have seen done before, especially as we approach an election?

Fisheries and Oceans
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Halifax West
Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan Minister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for the question which I know is of great interest to people in Newfoundland and Labrador and elsewhere in Atlantic Canada.

As I indicated earlier, I appreciate the work of the FRCC. I am considering its recommendations and I will be making a decision and announcing it very shortly.

Air Canada
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Christian Jobin Lévis-Et-Chutes-De-La-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, the minister responsible for official languages announced to us in this House last week that a restructured Air Canada would have to continue to comply with the Official Languages Act. That is, in itself, good news.

What I would like to know from the Minister of Transport, however, is whether WestJet and Jetsgo, two other Canadian companies that have started to provide services in Quebec, are subject to this same legislation. Does he intend to apply the same intensity as he did to Air Canada to ensuring their compliance with the Official Languages Act?

Air Canada
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, my expectation is that Air Canada will meet its obligations under the Air Canada Public Participation Act, as well as any other applicable legislation.

All Canadian carriers, including Jetsgo, WestJet and Air Canada, are obliged by regulations to provide passengers with information in both official languages as to the safety procedures and what to do in the event of an emergency situation.

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, over a month ago when the minister appeared before the Standing Committee on National Defence and Veterans Affairs, I specifically asked him about the deplorable conditions of many homes on our Canadian Forces bases across Canada, and about the ever increasing rent his government charges the families. I am still waiting for an answer.

Over 80% of the private married quarters were built pre-1960s and still contain toxic substances such as asbestos and lead. Rather than continuing its decade of neglect of our military families, why will the government not commit the necessary funding to improve their homes?

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Liberal

David Pratt Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the government remains committed to a good quality of life for members of the Canadian Forces. We have taken some significant steps to improve the housing for members of the Canadian Forces.

Since 1998 for instance, the government has spent something in the order of $400 million to improve the housing stock of members of the forces. As well, over the next three years we expect to spend another $120 million. Those houses that are deemed to be substandard are taken off the market as quickly as possible.

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has stated repeatedly that he will not deploy our troops overseas without proper equipment, yet he was the one who reluctantly agreed to replace some of the buildings that he himself slashed from past Canadian Forces budgets.

What about addressing the basic needs of the unfortunate families left behind living in substandard, unsafe houses? They are living in those houses today. The houses are not off the market. Those families are living in them now.

When will the government commit the necessary money to address the current needs of our military families?

National Defence
Oral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Liberal

David Pratt Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, as I have already indicated, the government has made substantial investments and will continue to make substantial investments in terms of the housing stock at Canadian Forces bases.

I should say as well that as part of the plan, in terms of the $120 million that we are going to be spending over the next number of years, there will be approximately 190 units on nine bases dealt with this summer.

Shipbuilding
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, two weeks ago, the Minister of National Defence refused to confirm that three joint support ships would be built in Canada, and his colleague at Industry Canada was no more forthcoming during her visit to the shipyard in Lauzon last Friday.

Will the government make a commitment to having these ships built in Canada, and in Lauzon in particular, to ensure the survival of the shipbuilding industry, as the stakeholders in the industry have been asking it to do?

Shipbuilding
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Nepean—Carleton
Ontario

Liberal

David Pratt Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, the government has indicated and I have indicated in the past in connection with the announcement on the joint support ships that we are committed to building these ships in Canada if a competitive environment exists.

Having said that, I think that all of us are very interested in seeing what sort of proposals may come forward from the shipbuilding industry in Canada. It is an exciting time for the shipbuilding industry. I would say as well that it is an exciting time for the navy, because these ships are going to be providing a transformational capability for the Canadian navy.

Multiculturalism
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Sophia Leung Vancouver Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of State for the Status of Women and Multiculturalism.

This month is Asian Heritage Month which we observe every year. According to Statistics Canada, we have around a 10% population of Asian descent in Canada. Indeed Asians have enriched our diversity. How has the Government of Canada chosen to recognize Asian Heritage Month this month?

Multiculturalism
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Etobicoke—Lakeshore
Ontario

Liberal

Jean Augustine Minister of State (Multiculturalism and Status of Women)

Mr. Speaker, I want to compliment the member for her interest in helping us to ensure that we recognize Asian Heritage Month.

Through Asian Heritage Month and its many activities, which can be found on the Canadian Heritage website, we are saying to members of the community that there are opportunities to get deeper inside the Asian heritage and Asian culture, which is part of our multicultural heritage. We are making a huge contribution to every aspect of life in Canada when we celebrate with members of the Asian community.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Joe Clark Calgary Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Deputy Prime Minister that is supplemental to those put by the member for Medicine Hat.

The Auditor General has automatic access to the books of government agencies and departments. She is denied automatic access to so-called arm's length corporations like Health Infoway, Innovation Canada, Genome Canada and others.

Why the double standard? Why does the government not fight the democratic deficit by giving the Auditor General automatic access to those entities which she seeks?