House of Commons Hansard #18 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

Vote #3

Norad
Government Orders

7:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I declare the motion carried.

The House resumed from May 5 consideration of the motion that Bill C-5, An Act respecting the establishment of the Public Health Agency of Canada and amending certain Acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
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7:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion at the second reading stage of Bill C-5.

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
Government Orders

7:10 p.m.

Conservative

Jay Hill Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, I believe that if you were to seek it you would find unanimous consent to apply the results of the vote just taken to the motion now before the House, with Conservative members voting yes.

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
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7:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Is there unanimous consent to proceed in this fashion?

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
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7:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
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7:10 p.m.

Liberal

Karen Redman Kitchener Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, Liberals in the House will be voting for the motion.

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
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7:10 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Montmorency—Charlevoix—Haute-Côte-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, Bloc Québécois members will oppose this motion.

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
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7:10 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, members of the NDP will be voting yes on this motion.

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7:10 p.m.

Independent

André Arthur Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier, QC

Mr. Speaker, I vote in favour of this motion.

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

Vote #4

Public Health Agency of Canada Act
Government Orders

7:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I declare the motion carried. Accordingly, the bill stands referred to the Standing Committee on Health.

(Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved

7:15 p.m.

Liberal

Albina Guarnieri Mississauga East—Cooksville, ON

Mr. Speaker, tonight we are pursuing the unanswered question of weeks past, the question as to why the government chose to appoint someone to public office immediately after he made statements that were hurtful to Jamaican Canadians, Vietnamese Canadians and refugees.

The problem is not that there is just one man with these views, but that these views might be more widely held in the government and must be challenged.

Here is the view of the appointments commissioner and I quote directly and at some length without any editing lest my hon. friends think it out of context. He said:

Immigration groups blame “poverty” or “police discrimination” or “lack of opportunity”. Once again, these are symptoms, but not the root cause.

Here is the root cause they all know, but don't talk about: the vast majority of violent, lawless immigrants come from countries where the culture is dominated by violence and lawlessness. Jamaica has one of the world's highest crime rates driven mainly by the violence between gangs competing for dominance in the Caribbean drug trade. Why do we expect different behaviour in Toronto, Ontario than in Kingston, Jamaica?

He goes on:

Similarly, a portion of our Indo-Chinese immigrants have lived in situations where violence is necessary to survive. Again, the violent behaviour continues in Canada. It's fair to say that most immigrants who abuse our society have come in as refugee claimants rather than “economic immigrants”.

This not only means they are more likely to have violent tendencies, but also much less likely to have the skills, training and attitude necessary to contribute to our society.

So, we need to remember this when we consider admitting refugee claimants.

This is from the man appointed to review appointments to the Immigration and Refugee Board. What is wrong with this statement? What is wrong is that Canada is not about putting people down. It is about lifting people up.

Canada is a land of great expectations, a nation of pride, not prejudice, where the government must have both sense and sensibility. This is a country where very few immigrants left a better life back home to come here. So we must always challenge those who tell us to lower our expectations of immigrants.

There are those who say that country x has a corrupt government, is plagued with crime, drugs and poverty, so they do not want x people here because they will make our country become like theirs. The many countries that fit that description also have victims of crime and poverty, but mostly these people are victims of indeed a lack of opportunity.

Opportunity changes everything and changes everyone. Canada must always be that land of opportunity where immigrants are not chained by their past, but are free to pursue a future that is free from the chains of prejudice and discrimination.

I would call on the government to never again allow or appoint government officials who dare to diminish our expectations of the future that each and every immigrant is capable of building in Canada.