House of Commons Hansard #52 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was industry.

Topics

André Shatskoff
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Diane Bourgeois Terrebonne—Blainville, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am tremendously honoured to pay tribute to Mr. André Shatskoff, a man with a big heart who has for the past 17 years been volunteering in our community.

As the director general of Caisse populaire Desjardins de Terrebonne, board member of the Chamber of Commerce and founding president of the Terrebonne cultural development society, he has just achieved his dream of providing the citizens of Terrebonne with one of the most beautiful theatres in Quebec. the new Théâtre du Vieux-Terrebonne.

In addition, he was recently named volunteer of the year for 2004 by the newspaper La Revue .

The Bloc Québécois congratulates André Shatskoff for his remarkable accomplishments. A tireless and dedicated volunteer for social, cultural and economic causes, there is no doubt that he is deserving of our deepest respect.

Congratulations, Mr. Shatskoff.

Middle East
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Kadis Thornhill, ON

Mr. Speaker, today is a day of cautious optimism for peace in the Middle East. After four and a half years of violence, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas have signed a formal ceasefire.

While this step is not a solution to the problem, it does give hope that peace may be on the horizon. Although agreements similar to this have been made in the past, it appears that today's does have more weight. Both the Israelis and Palestinians have made great strides in recent weeks, and the concessions which have been made today may prove to be instrumental to an everlasting peace.

Canada has an important role to play in this process. We must do everything we can to encourage the return to the peace process. Canada must be vocal in calling for and ensuring that any agreement will be just and long-lasting.

I urge those involved in upcoming negotiations to put an end to the aims of those who seek destruction and annihilation. I encourage them to have the will and the courage to bring to reality a long held hope and desire for peace, prosperity and coexistence.

Income Tax
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Guy Lauzon Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, ON

Mr. Speaker, 20 years ago Patrick O'Connor, who lives in my riding of Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, was a successful young manager and entrepreneur. At the age of 25 he contracted both HIV and hepatitis C from tainted blood transfusions.

Patrick has spoken to students, community groups, home care workers and others about HIV. He has written over 500 newspaper columns and published a children's booklet, 10,000 copies of which were distributed free of charge in the Cornwall area.

In 1992 he founded the United Counties AIDS Project, which raised over $35,000 in three years to help others with HIV. Today he is working on a second book for teens, and continues to write and speak about AIDS.

How has the government rewarded him? By insisting he pay $90,000 in interest because he failed to file his taxes in 1990, the same year he was told he was dying and was forced to sell his business at a loss.

I call upon the government to forgive the interest on Mr. O'Connor's back taxes. It is the least it could do for this community hero.

Food Freedom Day
Statements By Members

February 8th, 2005 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Rose-Marie Ur Middlesex—Kent—Lambton, ON

Mr. Speaker, today, February 8, is Food Freedom Day. Today Canadians have earned enough money to pay for their entire year's food supply. It takes just 38 days out of the whole year for the average Canadian to pay for his or her groceries.

According to Statistics Canada, in 2003 Canadians spent 10.6% of their disposable income on food. That number has dramatically decreased over the years. In 1997 Canadians spent over 12.5%. By comparison, Food Freedom Day in Australia falls on February 12, in Japan on February 20, in Iceland on February 27, and Mexico does not reach it until March 4.

Farmers are earning just a fraction of the average food dollar. While Food Freedom Day is February 8, January 9 is the day on which we have paid for the farmers' amount. That is right, January 9. It takes only nine days to pay the farmers for a whole year's worth of food.

We need to recognize our primary producers so that Food Freedom Day can be a day that everyone can celebrate, including our farmers.

Black History Month
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Maka Kotto Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, history teaches us that the best way to alter or wipe out the identity of a people or a group of people who identify with one homeland is to cut off its historical and cultural memory. We can clearly see that a tree without roots is a tree that will die.

For a number of years now, February has been a time to remember the role played by Africans and their descendants in ancient, recent and contemporary history.

Children and grandchildren of African descent have a great hunger for role models. In fact, they have great need of role models with whom to identify in order to reach their full potential.

Many thanks to all those women and men in Quebec and in Canada who keep on fighting, not counting the hours or the energy spent, in order to ensure that Black History Month will continue.

Nunavut
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Nancy Karetak-Lindell Nunavut, NU

Mr. Speaker, again this year Nunavut will experience a banner year in mineral exploration. Right across the territory, exploration companies are exploring for gold, platinum, iron ore and diamonds.

This year over $120 million will be spent trying to find that mineral deposit worth developing into an operating mine. Projects like Tahera's Jericho diamond project and Cumberland Resources' Meadowbank gold deposit demonstrate that perseverance and determination do pay dividends.

Industry and governments are working together in Nunavut to make projects happen, to develop infrastructure to support this economic development and ultimately give Nunavummiut the jobs they want and need.

Nunavut will be a real contributor to the Canadian economy with the right investments.

Tsunami Relief
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Ted Menzies Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to congratulate the efforts of my constituents Gordon Florence, Fern Brothers and Sheryl Lane who have come together to organize a concert to raise funds for the orphans of the tsunami.

The variety concert will take place at the Community Hall in my town of Claresholm on Thursday, February 17 at 7 p.m. It will feature artists from across the riding of Macleod and a fitting choral rendition of I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing .

Scores of people have donated their time and services to make this concern a success, including the Salvation Army which will ensure that 100% of the money raised will go directly to those in need.

I am proud to be a member of such a kind and generous community. I invite the members of the House and citizens across Canada to join me in Claresholm on February 17.

Black History Month
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Augustine Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, February is Black History Month, an occasion of much pride for black Canadians whose presence in Canada can be traced to the early 1600s when Mathieu Da Costa worked with Samuel de Champlain as an interpreter of the Mi'kmaq language.

Black History Month provides an opportunity for all of us to learn about the experiences of black Canadians in our society and the vital role they have played throughout our history. The year 2005 is a milestone in our celebration as it marks the 10th year since the motion declaring February as Black History Month was passed in the House.

I would like to thank some of our special guests who have travelled from Toronto to be with us today. I would like to recognize special people like Speaker Alvin Curling, Delores Lawrence, Denham Jolly and Dr. Stephen Blizzard for their continuous dedication and special contribution to Canadian society.

Youth
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, the shooting of Matthew Dumas last week in Winnipeg is a tragedy for our whole community. It is a tragedy for Matt's family and a tragedy for the police officer involved.

As we try to sort out the specific details in this case, we must look at the bigger picture of troubled youth in our society and assess the adequacy of our urban aboriginal strategies. Research on housing, health and poverty points to an urgent need to invest in communities like Winnipeg's North End, to invest in strategies that will unlock the tremendous potential of our youth.

The cycle of poverty, neglect and violence is not acceptable. I do not accept it. The NDP does not accept it. Why does the Liberal government accept it?

The future for these kids is now, today. They cannot wait for a future that comes some time after the national debt is paid off or corporate greed is satisfied. We appeal to the government not to take for granted our inner city neighbourhoods and our aboriginal communities and to put the necessary resources in place to help youth out of the tragic downward spiral into despair and violence.

World Cup Giant Slalom Champion
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Myron Thompson Wild Rose, AB

Mr. Speaker, I would like to extend heartfelt congratulations and well done to Canada's next crazy Canuck, Thomas Grandi of Canmore, Alberta. After 12 years on the World Cup circuit, Thomas captured two world giant slalom wins in just three days.

Those who know him well will see those back to back victories as a result of the lifetime dedication to his sport. This is the first time in this discipline that a Canadian male has won in 38 years of the World Cup's existence.

Thomas hit the slopes in Banff at age two and a half. For a time the family operated a ski lift at Banff's Mount Norquay so practising was not a problem. From the time Thomas enrolled in the Nancy Greene program he was a natural on skis. He became one of the country's best technical performers and won nine national alpine titles.

Even though the Italian team has tried to lure him away with a great deal of sponsorship money, Thomas has said that he wants to make it as a Canadian.

On behalf of all of Canada, on behalf of all members of Parliament, I want to thank Thomas for his years of dedication and obvious patriotism. We will all be glued to our televisions at next year's Olympics.

Film Industry
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to tell the House about the significant contributions of men and women from Drummondville to the film industry.

Pierre Gendron produced The Decline of the American Empire and Night Zoo . Claude Desrosiers was the director of Dans une galaxie près de chez vous . Sébastien Montour and Jean-François Lepage directed Ça déménage un premier juillet . The music for Séraphin: Heart of Stone was written by Michel Cusson and that for Seducing Doctor Lewis by Jean-Marie Benoit. Karine Vanasse had notable roles in Set Me Free and Séraphin: Heart of Stone . Guy Paquin and Francine Dubois showed their expertise in set design in The Day After Tomorrow . François Camirand wrote the screenplays for Les Boys I, II and III , while Pierre Sénécal made his entrance into the world of cinema with Evil Words .

The Discovery Channel devotes many hours to Jeffrey Gallant and his films and research on sharks.

All these people have won our admiration and respect for the quality of their work and the many small pleasures they have given all of us. To all these people, many thanks.

Veterans
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Cheryl Gallant Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, ON

Mr. Speaker, history repeats itself. Sixty years after the government finally recognized veterans involved in chemical warfare experiments, Canadians were upset to learn that soldiers who are members of Joint Task Force Two, Canada's elite anti-terrorist unit, are being denied pensions for service related injuries. It was, to quote the military ombudsman, “the invocation of threatened prosecution under the Official Secrets Act” then that prevented recognition, as it does today with JTF2 veterans.

While Canadians are proud of the men and women who serve in Canada's armed forces, Canadians are not proud of the way the veterans are treated by the government in this the year of the veteran.

It is time the federal government learned from the mistakes of the past and recognized the tremendous job our military does on behalf of all Canadians. No veteran should be made to beg for his or her pension.

Seniors
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

John Maloney Welland, ON

Mr. Speaker, many senior citizens are finding it financially difficult to support themselves on low fixed incomes as their day to day living expenses increase far in excess of their incomes. In too many cases indexation of the old age security pension and guaranteed income supplement has not kept step with increases in the cost of modest rental accommodations, utilities and food. An evening meal of tea and toast is just not acceptable for our seniors.

Canadian society takes great pride in our values of justice, equality and compassion, yet too many senior members of our community who have contributed to building this great country worry and suffer in silence at a stage in their lives when they are most vulnerable and physically incapable of improving their lot.

A strong commitment here in the House of Commons along with a commitment at the provincial level is essential in guaranteeing that seniors who face financial difficulties with fixed incomes will have greater ease in their retirement without severe financial worries.

I call on the government to take immediate steps to address this shameful situation.

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest
Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we are witnessing the extraordinary spectacle of a former prime minister being hauled before a judicial inquiry. He is again trying to justify what occurred by wrapping himself in the flag. We all remember his statement that it does not matter if millions of dollars were stolen as long as the country was safe.

Does this Prime Minister clearly understand that the unity excuse for the theft of taxpayer dollars is completely unacceptable?

Sponsorship Program
Oral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard
Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the continued attempts by the Leader of the Opposition to subvert the Gomery commission will be responded to in due course.

On another issue, the other day the Leader of the Opposition said that the protection of a certain minority right, that is to say the definition of civil marriage, was an attack on multiculturalism. That is an attack on the Charter of Rights. It is the worst example of the politics of division.

I ask the hon. member to take this opportunity--