House of Commons Hansard #63 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was afghanistan.

Topics

Opposition Motion—Afghanistan
Business of Supply
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, I heard this fiction reported again today by the Bloc defence critic. Usually, I have to say, I respect him in terms of his points of view, but I do not know who could actually believe that advocating we should move immediately toward giving notice for the safe and secure withdrawal of our troops after 2007 would be somehow an act of irresponsibility. The Bloc has come to understand why this is the course that needs to be pursued. The Bloc, in trying to suggest that the one party that has been absolutely consistent on this point--

Opposition Motion—Afghanistan
Business of Supply
Government Orders

1:55 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Royal Galipeau

It is with regret that I interrupt the hon. member for Halifax. When we return to the study of the motion, there will be four minutes left for the hon. member for Halifax under questions and comments. We will now hear statements by members.

Lake Simcoe
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Patrick Brown Barrie, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to recognize our government's efforts to help clean up Lake Simcoe.

Last month, the Minister of the Environment announced $18 million to help preserve Ontario's precious Lake Simcoe. This funding is in addition to the $12 million that was announced last year and brings the Conservative government's total investment in Lake Simcoe to $30 million.

Lake Simcoe is a drinking water source for eight municipalities, including my riding of Barrie. It is known for its recreation industry, which generates more than $200 million in annual revenue.

These funds will have a positive impact on reducing the high phosphorus levels that impact marine life and cause excessive weed growth in Kempenfelt Bay.

In addition to the $30 million, the government has also banned the dumping of sewage and other waste from watercraft, implemented ballast water control and management regulations protecting Lake Simcoe from invasive species, and moved to virtually ban phosphates in detergents, which harm the lake.

Kempenfelt Bay and Lake Simcoe are environmental jewels within Simcoe County. I am proud that these funds will help protect them for future generations.

Timiskaming District Secondary School
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Anthony Rota Nipissing—Timiskaming, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to congratulate Timiskaming District Secondary School in New Liskeard on being selected by the British Council in Canada to take part in a significant international Arctic expedition next September. This journey will focus on the impact of climate change in the Canadian Arctic.

This unique opportunity will enable students from Timiskaming District Secondary School to carry out a wide range of scientific experiments and research while traveling on a ship through the Canadian Arctic. Their findings will then be shared with other schools within the local community and the province as a whole.

Furthermore, this international Arctic expedition will provide significant contributions, such as educational films and photography, to curriculum planning across Canada.

Once again, I wish to congratulate the staff and students at Timiskaming District Secondary School of New Liskeard for their initiative, their creativity, their community spirit and, most importantly, their recognition of the significance of the Canadian Arctic to all of us.

Outdoors Caucus
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, millions of hunting and fishing enthusiasts of all ages pump more than $10 billion into the economy every year.

Established in March 2006, the outdoor caucus is one of the largest non-partisan caucuses on Parliament Hill. Its mission is to bring together MPs and senators who wish to promote activities such as hunting, fishing, birdwatching, walking, cycling, sport shooting and trapping in order to preserve these activities, promote safety and protect wildlife and natural habitats.

I therefore urge all members who wish to promote these interests to join the outdoors caucus so that all citizens may contribute to the preservation of natural spaces of unparalleled beauty and practice traditional, environmentally sustainable activities, all the while respecting provincial jurisdictions.

The Environment
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

Bill Siksay Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, tonight the House will have the opportunity to vote on a straightforward confidence motion sponsored by New Democrats. It expresses our deep frustration that, despite the urgent need to effectively address the climate change crisis, the Conservative government refuses to bring the clean air and climate change act to a vote.

The Conservatives' original clean air act did not have the support of the House, environmentalists or Canadians. That was when New Democrats succeeded in convincing all parties that the bill should be completely rewritten in a process whereby all parties could have input and influence.

It was rewritten. Now the new clean air and climate change act contains ideas championed by all parties and is supported by the environmental community.

Still the government refuses to bring it to a vote. Given the climate change crisis, this Parliament must act. By passing the clean air and climate change act, this Parliament can take action that will make a difference.

Canadians want action from this Parliament on climate change. The Conservatives have not taken their responsibility for climate change seriously. They do not have the confidence of Canadians when it comes to dealing with this crisis. They should not command the confidence of this House.

Medal of Bravery
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Bruce Stanton Simcoe North, ON

Mr. Speaker, on February 29, I had the great honour of attending a commemoration at Rideau Hall that recognized a number of outstanding Canadians, including a constituent of mine from the village of Lafontaine, Ontario: Randy Smith, the Fire Chief of the Township of Tiny.

Fire Chief Smith and 10 others were awarded the Medal of Bravery for the courage and determination they displayed on August 27, 2004. On that date, a massive mudslide near Terrace, B.C., trapped two men in a river of mud and debris. Even with the threat of further mudslides and against heavy rain and thick mud, Randy and his colleagues risked their lives to rescue the two men.

Randy's wife, Donna, and their three children, Christine, Jason and Mark, are tremendously proud of Randy. I join with them in commending Randy and the 40 other true Canadian heroes who received Medals of Bravery last month and I invite all members of the House to also do so.

While I have the attention of the House, I might also congratulate the member for Cambridge, who happens to be celebrating his 50th birthday today.

Mohamed Kohail
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada has to be vigilant in cases where Canadian citizens are being detained abroad, especially in countries that still have the death penalty.

This is not a matter of interfering in another country's business, but of ensuring that all the rights of each Canadian citizen are respected and, more importantly, that each gets a fair trial.

In the case of Mohamed Kohail, who is being held in Saudi Arabia and is sentenced to death, his lawyer was present just once in the nine phases of the trial and the witnesses in his client's defence were disallowed.

In light of the very short deadline before Mohamed Kohail's execution, it is imperative that the Government of Canada act swiftly to have his rights and defence respected and heard.

Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Gerald Keddy South Shore—St. Margaret's, NS

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to the men and women of the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary, maritime region. The auxiliary's 16 directors, under the able chairmanship of Frank McLaughlin, just completed its annual meeting in Halifax. This volunteer organization, which is staffed primarily by fishing captains and their crews, successfully participate in over 200 search and rescue missions annually.

Under the direction of the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Halifax, the Coast Guard Auxiliary Maritimes was tasked to go to sea in over 5,200 missions since it was formed in 1978. These 732 skilled mariners are constantly upgrading their search and rescue skills and risk their lives to ensure that those in peril on the sea are brought back to land safely.

I wish to pay tribute to and give thanks for the brave service and high level of technical capability these courageous volunteers provide for all Canadians and indeed all international mariners who travel the waters off our east coast.

Maison au Diapason
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Christian Ouellet Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to acknowledge in this House the excellent work of a group of citizens from my riding who are dedicated to the well-being of those nearing the end of life.

These are citizens from Brome—Missisquoi and Haute-Yamaska who initiated the project for a regional palliative care centre: the Maison au Diapason. In addition to palliative care for the terminally ill, the centre will provide specialized technical and psychological support to the afflicted families.

The centre, which will be located in Bromont, is an eight-room house with living rooms and space for the families. The public is contributing to this project through numerous fundraising activities. A few months ago, a group successfully climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and, these days, volunteers are selling bricks, symbolizing the construction of the house, for just a few dollars.

I wish the best of luck to the support team at the Maison au Diapason.

Infrastructure
Statements By Members

March 10th, 2008 / 2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Wajid Khan Mississauga—Streetsville, ON

Mr. Speaker, last year the government set aside $83 million for public transit infrastructure in Mississauga. I am delighted that the contribution agreements were recently signed. this money is now flowing to the municipality for this long overdue project.

Mississauga has been waiting for 12 longs years for this funding. That is because for 10 years the previous Liberal successive governments ignored the needs of Mississauga.

I thank the Prime Minister, as well as the Minister of Finance, and the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities for helping the people of Mississauga.

This government continues to address the infrastructure deficit left by the successive Liberal governments. We are investing in the future with our building Canada plan, which will deliver $33 billion to municipalities over seven years. In budget 2008 we are making the gas tax fund permanent so municipalities can better plan and finance their infrastructure.

As we can see, the Conservative government is investing in the infrastructure that Canada needs.

Tibet
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Larry Bagnell Yukon, YT

Mr. Speaker, today marks the 49th anniversary of the uprising of the Tibetan people, that fateful day in 1959 when Tibetans took to the streets of Tibet's capital, Lhasa, to protest China's invasion and illegal occupation of Tibet.

Like thousands of people around the world, we in the Canadian Parliament remember those who have stood up for what they believe in. Like those courageous people 49 years ago and those who still struggle valiantly inside Tibet, we are standing up for what we believe in and demanding a peaceful resolution of the Tibetan issue.

As a member of the Parliamentary Friends of Tibet, I had the privilege of meeting His Holiness the Dalai Lama during his recent visit to Canada, and talking about Yukon and Burma. In his presence, one is overwhelmed by the grace and peace that has sustained for a lifetime his epic struggle for his people in Tibet and the autonomy that is rightfully theirs and will return to them one day.

National Community Development Trust
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Daniel Petit Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week, in the presence of a minister representing the Quebec government, our Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities announced that the Government of Canada will be allocating $216.9 million over three years to the Government of Quebec as part of the new national community development trust to help vulnerable communities and workers.

The trust builds on other initiatives brought in by our government to shelter the country's economy from instability in international markets and to make Canada stronger and more prosperous in the long term.

Once again, the Conservative members have fought for Quebec workers while the Bloc, always empty-handed, has done nothing more than concoct ideas about Quebec separation.

The Bloc Québécois can provide no real results, nor can it provide any money. All it can do is talk and talk, condemned to eternity on the opposition benches.

The Budget
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative-Liberal budget has done nothing for the working families of northern Ontario. At a time when oil is peaking at above $100 a barrel, there is no plan to stop the gouging at the pumps, which is affecting consumers across the north.

Even worse is the fact that there no plan in place to help rural people who are stuck with increasingly high fuel bills. I know senior citizens who are paying over $900 a month just to stay warm. The problem is if people have an oil boiler in northern Ontario, it is difficult to convert to other alternative technologies.

That is why we need a plan to move to a greener technology for rural people. I would suggest wood pellets because the pellets can be created out of any kind of wood waste. It is a much greener technology.

The fact is the government has to stop protecting its buddies in the oil patch and start recognizing that rural people in northern Ontario deserve a government with a vision for a sustainable future.

Jutra Awards
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, last night, Quebec's best film actors, directors, producers and creators were honoured at the Jutra awards ceremony.

Hosted by the lively Normand Brathwaite, the 10th Jutra awards celebrated outstanding performances, with awards won by Roy Dupuis for Shake Hands with the Devil, and Guylaine Tremblay for Contre toute espérance, subtitled Summit Circle in English, and also highlighted outstanding direction, with an award won by Stéphane Lafleur for Continental, a film without guns.

The evening also showed us that our film industry is alive and well, and that it is able to reach a large audience and touch many people across the province and throughout the world.

I ask all of my colleagues to join me in congratulating all the Jutra award winners and participants.