House of Commons Hansard #22 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was crime.

Topics

Afghanistan
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Daniel Petit Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to reaffirm my unwavering support for our troops deployed in Afghanistan.

In addition, I offer my condolences to the families of Corporal Nicolas Raymond Beauchamp and Private Michel Lévesque, who were both stationed at Valcartier and who died in Afghanistan last week. I also offer my condolences to the family of Private Frédéric Couture, who died last week as well.

I pay tribute to the lives of these brave soldiers, who did not die in vain. They went to Afghanistan in an effort to restore hope to a people facing terrible difficulties and turmoil. They were there to support rebuilding efforts at the request of the government of Afghanistan, as part of a UN-sanctioned mission led by NATO. They believed in that mission. They were following their dream. Like their comrades, they did everything they could to protect the values we hold dear as Canadians.

I thank these soldiers for their courage. They have done us proud.

Forestry Industry
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, well, it will be a bitter Christmas for the 400 laid off workers at Norboard and Tembec in Cochrane. It is the same story across northern Ontario. Tembec and Timmins are down. Grant is down. Wawa is down. Dryden is down. Kenora is down.

We had a motion in the House to help the forestry sector and the manufacturing sector at a time of crisis, and what happened? The Liberals allowed that motion to be killed. They sat on their hands.

Now that people back home are finding out, the Liberals are scrambling to come up with excuses. Get this: They claim that if they stood up for the forestry families in northern Ontario, there could have been an election and they would have lost seats. What a pitiful response. They chose saving their own political skins over fighting for the hard-working families in northern Ontario.

If the Liberals are going to take a dive every time there is a vote in the House, they should go home, stop collecting their pay and leave the work of opposing the government to us.

Vancouver Airport Taser Death
Statements By Members

November 22nd, 2007 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Don Bell North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, like many North Vancouver residents who have contacted me, I was shocked and appalled last week by news and television accounts of the treatment and taser death of Polish immigrant Robert Dziekanski.

How could Mr. Dziekanski have been ignored, left alone and confused in a secure area of the airport for over 10 hours?

How could his mother, who had travelled all the way from Kamloops to greet her son, apparently be offered no assistance or compassion when Robert did not emerge as anticipated, even hours after his plane was known to have arrived?

Why was a sincere effort not made to confirm her son's location before she was allowed to return to Kamloops without her son, who in fact had arrived and was only a few hundred feet away, frustrated and confused?

Also, why did the RCMP who responded at the airport make what appears on video to be an almost immediate and unnecessary use of a taser, without visible consideration of any other procedures or methods of responding to Mr. Dziekanski's behaviour?

Airport, immigration and border services staff and the RCMP must provide answers.

Paul Vallée Sawmill
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

France Bonsant Compton—Stanstead, QC

Mr. Speaker, on the very day that the government rejected the Bloc Québécois motion to help the manufacturing and forestry sectors, news arrived of another mill closing down because of Conservative negligence.

The Paul Vallée sawmill in my riding announced that it would be closing its doors temporarily because of problems related to softwood lumber and the rising dollar. The Bloc Québécois introduced its motion precisely to address these problems.

This sawmill is a major employer in the small municipality of Saint-Isidore-de-Clifton. A whole community will be affected by the Conservatives' refusal to act.

The Conservative government has the means to help the manufacturing industry, but it opposed the Bloc's motion on November 14. This is further proof that the Bloc Québécois is the only party that is willing to stand up for the interests of Quebeckers.

Family Physicians
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Carolyn Bennett St. Paul's, ON

Mr. Speaker, this week is Family Medicine Week and parliamentarians are honoured to have members of the College of Family Physicians of Canada visiting with us here in Ottawa.

The College strives to improve the health of Canadians by promoting high standards of medical education and care in family practice, by contributing to public understanding of healthful living, by supporting ready access to services, and by encouraging research and disseminating knowledge about family medicine.

The college has two goals: first, for 95% of Canadians to have a family doctor by the year 2012; and second, that every Canadian should have access to a personal family physician, a registered nurse and/or nurse practitioner.

Today, 4.5 million Canadians do not have a family doctor. I believe they are the real have nots in our health care system.

I am asking the government what it is doing to ensure that every Canadian has a family doctor to call his or her own.

Democratic Representation
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

James Moore Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, in the last election we promised to give British Columbia more seats, its fair share of seats, in the House of Commons. We have kept our promise and tabled legislation to give B.C. seven more seats in Parliament.

Equal representation is good for Canada. Premier Campbell said it best, “This is a non-partisan measure that strengthens our democracy. This legislation recognizes B.C.'s growing population and the increasingly important role of the west in the federation's future”.

The Liberals are opposing this bill. This is not surprising. The Liberals voted against the gateway funding. They voted against B.C.'s forest industry by opposing the softwood lumber agreement. They voted against dredging on the Fraser River and a number of other B.C. issues.

By opposing British Columbia's fair share of seats in Parliament, the Liberal MPs from British Columbia are ignoring their responsibility to defend the province's future and its equal say in Canada's future.

Shame on them for ignoring their constituents. Shame on them for turning their backs on the future of British Columbia.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, Canada abolished the death penalty 31 years ago. Previous governments have constantly upheld this principle for Canadians abroad. That is why I have written to the governor of Montana today asking that he commute the death sentence against a Canadian there.

Will the government do the same and demand that the state of Montana not use the death penalty against a Canadian citizen?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the government has been very clear on what its position is with respect to this matter, but I have to note the new-found enthusiasm of the Leader of the Opposition on justice issues.

I can only tell you, Mr. Speaker, I wish there had been some of that enthusiasm last spring when we had bills that were going to protect law-abiding Canadians. I wish he could have written to some of his friends in the Senate last spring. He could have been helpful back then.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are against the death penalty because it violates fundamental principles of justice. The government cannot pretend to oppose the death penalty here while allowing such sentences to be carried out elsewhere. That is unjustifiable. The government should oppose the death penalty wherever it is still in use. No half measures.

In the name of justice and humanity, I urge the government to officially oppose the use of the death penalty on this Canadian citizen.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Certainly, Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition is a newcomer to this issue. When he was asked by one of the Toronto newspapers to put together a pseudo speech from the throne, there was not one single word that talked about the protection of law-abiding Canadians, not one single word on the justice issue.

The member can do as he pleases, but I would like to get his support for the criminal law legislation that we have introduced in this Parliament.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville
Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion Leader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, if the government truly believed the death penalty was ethically and morally wrong, as Canadians do, it would intervene in Montana, but it is silent. Despite the laws of the land, despite the Charter of Rights, despite the Supreme Court of Canada, the government is silent and its silence speaks volumes.

I ask again, will the government demand that the state of Montana not use the death penalty against a Canadian citizen?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Again, Mr. Speaker, we did not get any help whatsoever when we were trying to bring in mandatory prison terms for people who commit serious offences with guns.

One of the things that disappointed me the most that did not get done last spring was when there was a bill to better protect 14 and 15 year olds from sexual predators. That bill died in the Senate. I wish he could have written to his friends there and given us a hand on that one.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, every international human rights organization, Amnesty, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Council of Europe, has denounced the Conservative government policy on the death penalty. Canada is not back; it has walked off the stage.

Why is the government hell-bent on sacrificing an international reputation on human rights that was won by Liberals like Pierre Trudeau and Conservatives like Joe Clark?

Justice
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Niagara Falls
Ontario

Conservative

Rob Nicholson Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, the deputy leader has certainly written some interesting things about the death penalty in the past, but I can tell you there are no plans to change the laws of this country and we will continue to seek assurances on extradition matters.

We have indicated that individuals who commit multiple murders or mass murders abroad in a democratic country that adheres to the rule of law cannot necessarily count on the Canadian government to claim clemency and patriation back to this country.

Justice
Oral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, for over 30 years, Canada has been a leader in the international campaign against the death penalty. Now Canada is refusing to ask for clemency for a Canadian citizen condemned to death in Montana. Canada is no longer sponsoring UN motions against capital punishment.

Why is the Conservative government destroying our international reputation as a defender of human rights?