House of Commons Hansard #135 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was human.

Topics

South Asia Earthquake
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Papineau
Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew Minister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, within hours of this tragedy I convened an interdepartmental task force, including CIDA, defence, immigration and, of course, foreign affairs. We quickly announced a $20 million contribution, including 21 tonnes of blankets and two helicopters. We established a fund to match the private donations. We waived immigration processing fees. Over the past weekend we deployed DART.

Our timely and targeted response has been acknowledged by the international community and the government of Pakistan.

Lobbyists
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

NDP

Ed Broadbent Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the Minister of Industry.

The minister said on the weekend that he would take into account the NDP seven point proposal for ethical and accountability reform. I have sent him a copy. My question is about what he can do today.

Will he put an end to the David Dingwall lobbyist loophole? Specifically, will he bring in a measure that will make it illegal for a lobbyist to accept contingency fees? Will he accompany it by a requirement that if this happens, there will be a $35,000 fine and a sentence of up to two years in jail? Will he take some action?

Lobbyists
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Vancouver Kingsway
B.C.

Liberal

David Emerson Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the question and I thank the hon. member for giving me the document, of which he spoke, on the weekend. I have not read the document yet but I certainly intend to after question period.

We are dealing very aggressively with the issue of contingency fees. The taxpayers are not out a penny. We are cleaning up all of that and will continue to do so as we go forward.

Health
Oral Questions

October 17th, 2005 / 2:40 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, maybe this will stir the Prime Minister.

Today, avian flu has spread to Greece and today is the 20-month anniversary of the outbreak of avian flu in B.C.'s Fraser Valley. It ended after 17 million birds were killed, almost every bird there. Quarantine lines were breached twice through incompetence. We waited one week for test results when death rates were increasing 800% every 24 hours.

We need a public inquiry to know what went wrong and fix it now. No more delays. Why the cover-up around the screw-up on avian flu?

Health
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I believe the WHO has said that Canada, by far, is the best prepared country in the world on this issue.

We can never be fully prepared for these kinds of eventualities. We continue to work hard. In fact, the U.S. is modelling its own plans based on our plans in terms of preparedness.

I want to tell members that all the jurisdictions are working together under the leadership of David Butler-Jones, our chief public health officer, and we will do the right thing. There is no need to cause alarm among Canadians.

Health
Oral Questions

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Fletcher Charleswood—St. James, MB

Mr. Speaker, early last week the top wait time bureaucrat admitted evidence-based benchmarks would not be in place by the year-end deadline. In response, government spin doctors were climbing over each other to change the message. By the end of last week the top wait time bureaucrat had retracted his comments.

Will the minister admit that his own government clamped down on its wait time official because he highlighted the government's incompetence?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, that is strange coming from that party whose last three leaders, including the current one, always wanted to gut the Canada Health Act and end the federal role in health care.

The fact is that we will get benchmarks by December 31, 2005. I am meeting with the other health ministers at the end of this week and I will make sure, we will make sure from coast to coast to coast and Canadians will make sure that we have the benchmarks because we all signed a deal to do that.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Fletcher Charleswood—St. James, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government knows nothing about accountability which is why we need to throw it out.

The government's solution to the wait time crisis is more talk, more study and more waiting. We now know that the government will not have meaningful, measured benchmarks established by the deadline.

Will the minister admit that his government has created the wait time crisis and that Canadian patients will continue to wait as long as the Liberals are in power?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, obviously the hon. member finds it very hard to go off the script. Obviously he did not hear what I just said in the House.

The fact is there is a developing consensus across the country under the leadership of all the provinces and Dr. Brian Postl. We will have benchmarks by December 31. We do not have an option. Canadians will not give us an option to do otherwise.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Carol Skelton Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, SK

Mr. Speaker, avian flu is continuing its deadly march around the world. All parts of Canada are susceptible to the threat.

During SARS, it became apparent that Canada was not prepared to handle a pandemic.

Could the health minister explain why Canadians cannot see the government taking any concrete action to prevent the spread of avian flu to Canada?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, let me repeat. WHO, on its own, after assessing the plans across the world, has said that we are by far the best prepared jurisdiction in the world, bar none.

The fact is I agree that we can never be fully prepared for these kinds of eventualities. Therefore we continue to work hard to ensure we are more prepared than ever before.

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Conservative

Carol Skelton Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, SK

Mr. Speaker, the government continually says that it is ready to handle a pandemic but Canada has never really put its paper plans to a test. In fact, bureaucratic paperwork prevents medical personnel from assisting across provincial lines.

When will all doctors and nurses be approved to work in all provinces under a declared emergency?

Health
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, all jurisdictions are working on those very issues and we have had a great deal of success in working those issues out.

There is no need to cause alarm among Canadians. Canadians from coast to coast to coast, including those in government, are worried about these issues. We will have all the plans in place to ensure all the people who need to work across borders in this country are able to do so.

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Rivière-Du-Loup—Montmagny, QC

Mr. Speaker, the incomplete action plan the federal government has announced today leaves the entire softwood lumber industry wholly at the mercy of the American rulings, by denying loan guarantees which would enable these businesses to cope with this crisis.

How can the government have neglected these companies this way, when they have had to pay more than $5 billion in countervailing and antidumping duties imposed upon them illegally by the United States?

Softwood Lumber
Oral Questions

2:45 p.m.

Brossard—La Prairie
Québec

Liberal

Jacques Saada Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec and Minister responsible for the Francophonie

Mr. Speaker, I would invite the hon. member to have another look at our press releases. Today's announcement has nothing to do with softwood lumber. It is specifically intended as a response to Quebec's request for assistance in connection with the reduction in wood supply legislated by Quebec's Bill 71.

I think it is interesting that the Bloc Québécois is questioning this after voting against Bill C-9 and a budget increase.