House of Commons Hansard #59 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was criminal.

Topics

2 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

It being Wednesday, we will now have the singing of the national anthem led by the hon. member for Halifax West.

[Members sang the national anthem]

Agriculture
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Dave Batters Palliser, SK

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise today in the House of Commons on behalf of the residents of Palliser and Canada's new government to state my appreciation and this government's appreciation for the tremendous contribution made by Palliser producers.

Farm families in Palliser have spent more than a decade trying to convince Liberal and NDP governments to take Canada's farm crisis seriously.

Canada's new Conservative government understands farm families. We share their values and we are standing up for them.

Our first budget provided an additional $1.5 billion for agriculture, tripling our campaign commitment.

We are going to scrap the failed Liberal CAIS program and replace it with a new farm income support program that will meet farmers' needs.

We are moving forward with our biofuels strategy.

We have listened to farmers who told us they wanted choice in marketing.

I am proud of the outstanding contribution made by Palliser producers. I will continue to fight hard for farm families here in Ottawa.

Literacy
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Don Bell North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, there has been a national outcry in response to the government's decision to slash $17.7 million in federal funding for regional and local literacy programs. These devastating cuts will force literacy organizations across Canada to close their doors.

This is not the only blow delivered to literacy by the government. The Conservatives have also cut $17 million from the workplace skills strategy, which has a key focus on literacy and employability.

The government has cancelled the $3.5 billion set aside by the previous Liberal government for labour market partnership agreements with the provinces, which focused on increasing workplace training in several areas, including literacy and essential skills.

Basic education and skills are critical for Canadians trying to access employment and earn advancement on the job.

These cuts are a step backwards in our ability to meet the literacy challenges of Canadians and to build the kind of workforce our country needs.

Mental Illness Awareness Week
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to recognize that October 1 to 7 is Mental Illness Awareness Week. This week is about fighting prejudice by bearing in mind that mental illness can affect anyone.

Indeed, statistics in this regard speak for themselves; they show that 20% of the population will experience mental illness at one time or another during their lifetime, and that 80% will be affected by the illness of a close relative.

Under the slogan “Our mother has a mental illness... We need help”, this year's event is designed to reach out to children of all ages with a mentally ill parent.

Given that children have the right to know and, more importantly, to understand what is going on, let us wish all the best to those organizations which strive to reach out to them in an effort to spare them a great deal of suffering.

Aboriginal Women
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, October marks Women's History Month. This year's theme is Aboriginal Women: The Journey Forward.

Bev Jacobs is a Mohawk from Six Nations and a member of the Bear Clan. She is the president of the Native Women's Association of Canada. I have met with Bev regularly since I became an MP and she inspires me with the dedication she brings to the issues affecting aboriginal women.

Today Bev Jacobs led aboriginal women and their supporters in rallies across Canada to remember their 500 missing sisters as part of the Sisters in Spirit campaign to document violence against aboriginal women.

Bev Jacobs has also been a leading voice in denouncing Canada for its poor record on the rights of aboriginal women.

This week she hosted the UN special rapporteur on human rights, Rodolfo Stavenhagen, who disapproves of Canada's plan to derail the adoption of the United Nations declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples.

I ask my colleagues to join me in celebrating Bev Jacobs and the journey forward for aboriginal women in this country.

Forest Industry
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, British Columbia has been engaged in a devastating battle against the mountain pine beetle since 1993. Throughout that time, I have fought alongside the forest industry and our forestry dependent communities to help them stand their ground against the infestation and federal Liberal neglect.

Now that we have formed government, we have swiftly provided that long overdue support. This new Conservative government has committed to $1 billion in new federal funding over the next 10 years to help B.C. communities ravaged by the pine beetle to address local priorities associated with the epidemic, diversify their economies and create new long term jobs, jobs like those the Prince George airport is striving to create through its expansion and development plans.

We will continue to invest in the scientific research necessary to help manage the aftermath of the infestation and to remain competitive under its threat in the future.

In just eight months, the Conservative government has already put B.C.'s forest industry on track for a much brighter future.

Literacy
Statements By Members

October 4th, 2006 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, on September 8, the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development stated that the Government of Canada was working to help citizens enhance their literacy skills. Barely two weeks later, the government announced it was cutting $17.7 million from funding to local and regional literacy programs.

These cuts will have a serious impact on services provided to minority communities in Canada. Such cuts will destroy the minority language literacy services network, including the Pluri-elles group which will have to shut down nine literacy centres in French-speaking rural Manitoba.

That is a disgrace.

Automotive Industry
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Jeff Watson Essex, ON

Mr. Speaker, what drives the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers' Association, the Association of International Automobile Manufacturers of Canada, the Automotive Parts Manufacturers' Association and the Canadian Automobile Dealers Association to come to Ottawa?

Climb into the rumble seat and fasten the seat belts, because it is auto days on Parliament Hill. My engine revs because these associations represent nearly 600,000 direct jobs across Canada, no mini-achievement.

In case people have not picked up on it, highly paid auto jobs power Canada's economic engine and fuel our quality of life in our communities.

It does not stop there. These associations are leading the way with cutting edge environmental technologies and processes.

I would not steer members wrong. These associations have parked themselves in Ottawa. They are not in neutral on the need for more competitiveness measures. They will not reverse their call for continued investment in this sector.

To the representatives of CVMA, AIAMC, APMA and CADA, I say welcome, and I wish them many miles of continued success in Canada.

Craig Paul Gillam and Robert Thomas James Mitchell
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Claude Bachand Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, it was with great sadness that the Bloc Québécois learned yesterday of the deaths of two Canadian soldiers, Sergeant Craig Paul Gillam and Corporal Robert Thomas James Mitchell of the Royal Canadian Dragoons. They were working on a road construction project 20 kilometres west of Kandahar.

The members of the Bloc Québécois mourn the loss of these men and offer sincere condolences to their families and friends, as well as to the Royal Canadian Dragoons.

We would like to tell the bereaved families that their loss will not have been in vain. The men were working to rebuild democracy and improve quality of life for Afghans.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them.

Federal Accountability Act
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

James Moore Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, today is day 105 of the Liberal Senate's foot dragging and filibuster on the toughest anti-corruption law in Canadian history. It is shameful that the Liberal Senate is deliberately delaying the passage of the accountability act after this House passed it in a mere 72 days.

Canadians remember the sponsorship scandal as a terrible stain on our country's history, yet when Canada's new Conservative government acted immediately to clean up the Liberal mess and restore the public's trust in government, the Liberal Party did nothing but play games.

Canadians want to know why the party of corruption has done nothing to help move forward the federal accountability act. Canadians want action. Canadians want an end to corruption. Canadians deserve better than these games that are being played by the Liberal Party of Canada.

Literacy
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Nancy Karetak-Lindell Nunavut, NU

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative government spending cuts announced last week included the slashing of $17.7 million for literacy organizations throughout Canada. The cuts mean that local and regional literacy programs will no longer be funded.

The cuts mean that literacy organizations such as the Saskatchewan Literacy Network will have to close their doors. Yukon will lose the Yukon Literacy Coalition. Nunavut will lose its Arctic College culturally based pilot program. Manitoba will lose approximately $620,000 from local and regional literacy programs.

Twenty-two per cent of adult Canadians have serious problems reading simple printed material. In light of these numbers, it is unconscionable that the Conservative government has chosen to slash a program to help adults who want to help themselves to learn to read and write, while at the same time posting a $13 billion surplus.

National Family Week
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Brian Storseth Westlock—St. Paul, AB

Mr. Speaker, this week Canadians across the country celebrate National Family Week. This is an opportunity for all of us to celebrate families and recognize their importance in our lives.

Strong families draw from and benefit the communities in which they live, work and play. Families are the building blocks of our society and our country. This government is committed to providing them with the support and recognition they deserve.

Canada's new government is helping families with the cost of kids' sports, public transit and everyday purchases.

We are there for farm families who need short term financial relief, while also looking at ways to improve income for the long term.

Millions of parents are now receiving direct support for child care through the universal child care benefit.

Canada's new government will continue supporting our country's future by supporting Canadian families. I ask my colleagues to join me in recognizing National Family Week.

Conservative Government Policies
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Peter Julian Burnaby—New Westminster, BC

Mr. Speaker, far from standing up for Canada, the Conservative government is waving the white flag of surrender. We see this with the softwood lumber sellout. We see this with the Wheat Board sellout and we see it in the secret Banff meetings.

That government is prepared to give away everything in its endless efforts of capitulation to the Bush government, with ministers committed to giving away even more of Canada under the so-called security and prosperity partnership.

Remodelling Canada as a carbon copy of the United States, means lowering our quality of life and Canadian standards in food safety, health, labour rights, transportation and the environment.

The NDP is pressing for full disclosure of everything the Conservative government is doing to sell us out, just like the Liberals did, and diminish our ability to build the society Canadians deserve.

In the upcoming election, Canadians will have a clear choice between the sellout versions of Canada by the Conservatives and Liberals and a vision of a new, proud, independent Canada, promoted by the NDP.

Literacy
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Yasmin Ratansi Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, economists from across Canada agree that literacy is fundamental to boosting economic productivity and prosperity. Canada currently has one of the highest levels of post-secondary attainment among OECD countries. However, this achievement is in jeopardy, as the Conservative government does not believe in literacy.

Without warning last week and despite a budget surplus of $13 billion, the Conservatives eliminated $18 million from the federal literacy skills program. Incredibly, this announcement came out on the same day that the Prime Minister's wife was on the streets of Ottawa campaigning for more literacy programs.

While cutting literacy programs, the Prime Minister is spending $3 million of taxpayer dollars on renovations for his official residence at 24 Sussex. I hope that includes plans for a comfortable, new doghouse with room enough for two. I have a sneaking suspicion that the Prime Minister will be spending a lot of time in it.

Bernard Landry
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Société Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Montréal declared Bernard Landry Patriote of the year for 2006-07.

Since 1975, this title has been awarded annually to a notable Quebecker. The official award ceremony takes place in November, the month during which we commemorate the Patriote victory over English troops on November 23, 1837, at Saint-Denis-sur-Richelieu.

As a former Quebec premier and a minister many times over, Mr. Landry helped create the quiet revolution and modern-day Quebec. His foremost concern has always been serving Quebec and the nation.

With uncommon determination and intelligence, he has worked tirelessly to this day to give Quebeckers the only tool that will enable them to express themselves and reach their full potential as a people: national independence.

He constantly reminded us that our sense of conviction keeps us faithful to our ideals. Throughout his half-century of public life, Bernard Landry remained faithful to his ideal: making Quebec a country.

The Bloc Québécois salutes Bernard Landry, a truly great patriot, on being awarded this honour.