House of Commons Hansard #105 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was care.

Topics

Prime Minister
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Hamilton East—Stoney Creek
Ontario

Liberal

Tony Valeri Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, again I repeat that there were no offers made. The hon. member has insinuated that there was an offer made. The Prime Minister has made it very clear that there would be no deals offered and there were no deals offered. In fact, it was the member for Newton—North Delta who approached the government about crossing the floor.

While the transcripts have been posted on someone's website at this point, we should see if these tapes are also going to be authenticated.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

May 31st, 2005 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, now that the Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development has had the time to familiarize herself with the file on the creation of an independent employment insurance fund, she ought to be in a position to inform us of her intentions.

Having already come out in favour of an independent EI fund as a Conservative MP, can she tell us whether, as minister, she intends to maintain that position and take steps to create such a fund, as has been unanimously recommended by the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills Development, Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Newmarket—Aurora
Ontario

Liberal

Belinda Stronach Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister responsible for Democratic Renewal

Mr. Speaker, I have had a chance to review the file. In budget 2005 there were considerable steps taken to bring about a system that brings about greater transparency, accountability and stability when setting that rate, and also independence. Above all, the Auditor General has said that those funds should remain consolidated with the public accounts.

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Lessard Chambly—Borduas, QC

Mr. Speaker, does the minister recall her reasons for voting in favour of an independent fund barely two months ago? If she does not, that is somewhat cause for concern for the department she heads.

Since a Bloc Québécois bill aimed at creating an independent EI fund is currently being studied in the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills Development, Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities, does the minister not realize that now is when she needs to speak up and clearly support Bill C-280?

Employment Insurance
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Newmarket—Aurora
Ontario

Liberal

Belinda Stronach Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister responsible for Democratic Renewal

Mr. Speaker, I would like to remind the hon. member that was before the budget. In the last budget the Government of Canada put in place new mechanisms to ensure greater transparency when studying EI premiums, independent advice, balancing revenues and costs and benefits paid out, and also a rate that will provide stability during times of economic fluctuations.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Fletcher Charleswood—St. James, MB

Mr. Speaker, over a month ago the House unanimously agreed to compensate all tainted blood victims immediately. Since then the government has doled out over $20 billion in new spending, yet it has not given one penny to tainted blood victims.

Why has the government not yet honoured the democratic wishes of Parliament and compensated all victims?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

St. Paul's
Ontario

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett Minister of State (Public Health)

Mr. Speaker, as you know, there is an agreement. The Minister of Health has been very clear that we will enter into this agreement and we will try to get these people the money they need as soon as possible. As well, there is the judicial process and the justice who will guide us in these deliberations.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Steven Fletcher Charleswood—St. James, MB

Mr. Speaker, it seems that the health minister is hiding in shame under his table this afternoon.

The government has admitted it bears responsibility for victims but still refuses to help them. It is apparent that the government will continue to ignore the will of Parliament and uses the actuarial audit as an excuse to delay making a decision.

Even if there is no surplus in the fund, will the minister still compensate all the victims?

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Vancouver South
B.C.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I am--

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, order. I am sure the Minister of Health is very glad to have all this enthusiastic support and assistance in giving his answer to the question, but he wants to answer the question and we have to have some order so we can hear the answer.

The hon. Minister of Health has the floor.

Health
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Liberal

Ujjal Dosanjh Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am never one to hide anywhere nor to surreptitiously tape other people through a serial taper.

Let me say that on the issue of hep C, we have taken appropriate steps. The government negotiators are talking to the lawyers for the classes and we will reach an appropriate understanding so that these victims are compensated and the issue is satisfactorily dealt with.

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Prentice Calgary North Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, since last September the Deputy Prime Minister has repeatedly told this House that her residential school file is under control. Canadians knew that it was not, because a government that spends $700 million settling 2% of the cases is not in control of much of anything.

Yesterday the Deputy Prime Minister abandoned course and announced a universal compensation plan that will cost in excess of $4 billion. I do not see any money in the government's budget. I would like to know where it is going to get the money. Is it going to cut services or raise taxes? Where will the money come from?

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Edmonton Centre
Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately the hon. member misunderstands what we did yesterday with the national chief. What we did was put in place a federal representative, a distinguished jurist, former Supreme Court Justice Frank Iacobucci. He is going to be consulting and negotiating with the AFN, with the claimants and the claimants' lawyers, with the churches and lawyers for the churches. What we want to do here is find a timely expeditious way to deal with the claims of those who were so tragically affected by the Indian residential schools experience.

Aboriginal Affairs
Oral Question Period

2:40 p.m.

Conservative

Jim Prentice Calgary North Centre, AB

Mr. Speaker, the government has spent $700 million not very expeditiously.

The Deputy Prime Minister has stood in this House for the past year defending her residential school program, telling us that her ADR system was working extraordinarily well. Yesterday she changed course and announced she needs another year and a justice to consult and study. Where was this admission of incompetence a year ago or five years ago?