House of Commons Hansard #2 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was jobs.

Topics

Immigration and Refugee Protection Act

10:05 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Before we proceed with routine proceedings, I have an important statement I would like to make to the House about the result of a vote taken on December 10, 2009, on the motion for third reading of Bill C-291, An Act to amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (coming into force of sections 110, 111 and 171).

As hon. members will recall, the announced result was a tie, with 143 members recorded as having voted in favour and 143 members recorded as having voted against. On hearing that the votes were equally divided on the motion, I gave the casting vote in the negative on the procedural grounds that the existing act should be maintained in its current form in order to uphold the status quo.

Since then, it was brought to the attention of the Table that a member had been erroneously counted as having voted yea. Further verifications were made to confirm that an error had in fact been made, namely that the hon. member for Eglinton—Lawrence had remained seated throughout the vote.

As hon. members will realize, if this yea vote had not been counted in error, events would have unfolded differently. No tie vote would have occurred. No casting vote would have been required. However, and most significantly, the outcome of the vote remains the same. The motion for third reading of Bill C-291 remains defeated, but on a vote of 142 yeas and 143 nays.

Accordingly, in keeping with precedents for when such errors are discovered, I am informing the House that a corrigendum was published on December 30 to correct the Journals of December 10, 2009, so that the true result of the vote may be properly reflected in our official records.

I thank hon. members for their attention to this detail. It is an important one from the point of view of the number of casting votes the Chair has to cast in the House.

Government Response to Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre
Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to 344 petitions.

Veterans Affairs
Routine Proceedings

10:05 a.m.

Jonquière—Alma
Québec

Conservative

Jean-Pierre Blackburn Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture)

Mr. Speaker, I would like to remind Canadians that Canada's last known veteran of the first world war, John “Jack” Babcock, passed away on February 18, 2010, at the age of 109.

I attended a private memorial service for Mr. Jack Babcock this past Saturday in Spokane, Washington, along with his family and friends, and the Chief of the Defence Staff. It was a moving tribute to a man who lived to a remarkable age.

At the tender age of 15, Mr. Babcock did not hesitate to answer the call for Canadians to serve in the first world war.

From the time that he emigrated to the United States in the 1920s until 2008, when his Canadian citizenship was reinstated, Mr. Babcock always insisted that he was a Canadian at heart. He was always very proud that he was able to serve his country when his country needed him.

Mr. Babcock was not the only one who eagerly served his country. More than 650,000 brave Canadians and Newfoundlanders defended our country during the first world war. Tragically, more than 68,000 of them lost their lives, and more than 170,000 were injured. The entire country, all regions of Canada and Newfoundland, were in mourning.

Despite the terrible price, ordinary Canadians like Mr. Babcock were determined to protect our shared values of freedom, democracy and human rights. In doing so, they defined our nation and provided us with a true sense of what it means to be Canadian.

This is our rich history. The proud and noble tradition passed on to us from the Canadians who served in the first world war, and whom we honour and commemorate today.

And now we mourn the loss of an entire generation. Let us never forget the courage, sacrifices and achievements of these men and women who served our country.

We have announced our plan to mark the end of this era. The Government of Canada will organize a national commemorative ceremony honouring all of Canada's first world war service men and women to pay tribute to their achievements and contributions. This ceremony will be held on Vimy Ridge Day, Friday, April 9, 2010, in Ottawa at the National War Memorial.

We extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Mr. Babcock. We join them in mourning the passing of a great man and a great generation.

Veterans Affairs
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Liberal

Rob Oliphant Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honour John Henry Foster Babcock who died last week at the remarkable age of 109. Canadians from coast to coast to coast were not only touched by his death, but have been, and will continue to be, inspired by his life.

Today, we recognize the passing of the last Canadian first world war veteran and pledge to keep alive the spirit of freedom, courage, democracy and dignity that marked his generation and left an indelible mark on Canada and the world.

We know the story but we revel in its telling again.

Just prior to his 16th birthday, Jack Babcock joined the 146th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force out of Sydenham, Ontario. The young soldier was dispatched to England, but when his true age was discovered, he was assigned to the young soldiers' battalion where he trained and worked in support services until a birthday would allow him to be deployed to the battlefields of France.

The signing of the armistice, while celebrated by millions craving peace, denied the young Mr. Babcock the opportunity to see battle with fellow soldiers.

A Canadian at heart, but one with a continuing sense of adventure and a restless spirit and in need of employment, Mr. Babcock settled in Washington State where he lived, raised a family and contributed to that community. The restoration of his Canadian citizenship in 2008, however, brought to full circle his love of this country and our country's love of this soldier.

On behalf of colleagues in the Liberal Party of Canada, I offer my condolences to the Babcock family on their loss. We will remember him.

We will remember him.

As the minister has acknowledged, over 650,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders served in the first world war. Tragically, more than 68,000 of them would never return to Canadian soil. Another 170,000 were wounded in service. Every one of them paid the price of peace on our behalf.

That is why we on this side of the House heartily welcome the government's intention to hold a commemorative ceremony in April honouring the Canadian heroes of the first world war, soldiers who defined our country and established a tradition of excellence that continues to this day in the women and men of our armed forces serving in Canada, in Haiti, in Afghanistan and around the world, proudly bearing the maple leaf in our name.

We will remember them.

Veterans Affairs
Routine Proceedings

10:10 a.m.

Bloc

Guy André Berthier—Maskinongé, QC

Mr. Speaker, we are rising in the House here today to pay special tribute to the memory of John “Jack” Babcock, the last veteran of the first world war, who passed away on February 18, 2010, at the remarkable age of 109.

Mr. Babcock was born at the dawn of the 20th century on July 23, 1900, in Kingston, Ontario. A member of a very large family, he showed his determination very early on in life. As soon as he turned 15, he joined the 146th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force in Sydenham, near Kingston. He was sent to Valcartier for basic training.

Because he was only 16, he was assigned to the reserve battalion known as the Boys Battalion or Young Soldiers Battalion. He was then sent to England for further training until he was old enough to fight, that is, 19. However, the war ended before he reached the age required to be sent to the front.

No one doubts Mr. Babcock's courage and determination. He himself said that he would have fought if he had had the chance.

That courage and determination exemplify all men and women who have served in the armed forces. That is precisely why we are rising here today. We would be remiss in failing to recognize the sense of duty shown by anyone, including Mr. Babcock, who decides to join the armed forces, and face the worst obstacles and most terrible situations in order to fulfill their mission with valour.

Whether on peacekeeping missions or helping people whose countries have been ravaged by war or disaster, the armed forces must always be able to count on the strength of character of its men and women in order to meet the expectations of their fellow Canadians, as well as local populations.

To honour Mr. Babcock's memory is to honour the memory of all men and women who have chosen to join the armed forces and serve their fellow citizens.

It is also to honour the families and friends who have supported them, as well as all veterans.

Veterans Affairs
Routine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured, on behalf of the New Democratic Party, to rise today to pay tribute to an extremely remarkable gentleman, Mr. John Jack Babcock, who, as we all know, lived to the ripe age of 109 years.

First, I would like to congratulate and thank the previous minister of veterans affairs from New Brunswick Southwest for his diligence and sincerity when it came to dealing with veterans issues.

I would also welcome the new Minister of Veterans Affairs and let him know that I am very honoured to work with him to advance the needs of veterans, RCMP veterans and their families. I congratulate him on his new post. He has the most remarkable cabinet post in all of government.

We are here today to pay tribute to a man who was a symbol, a light and a torch for an entire generation, who served our country during horrific times from 1914 to 1918.

What makes a 15-year-old young boy want to give up his youthfulness to participate in a deadly war? We call that person a Canadian, a person who knew, even at that age, that his country needed help, that the world needed help. He was willing to sacrifice his youth, and for that matter his life, to serve not only his country but the entire world for all of mankind, so that we in this country could live in peace, freedom and democracy, and that other countries could share in that life as well.

On behalf of our leader and the New Democratic Party, we extend sincere condolences to the family of Mr. Babcock, but also to all the families of all those people who served in that tremendous generation, who helped build this country and set the path forward for today.

We are extremely pleased that the government has recognized the honour and significance of having a national commemorative ceremony on April 9. We are pleased that the House honoured this motion by passing it unanimously, not just to honour Mr. Babcock, but again to honour all those who served so valiantly.

On behalf of New Democrats throughout the entire country, we offer our sincere condolences to the Babcock family, and also our congratulations to the government for honouring, on April 9, the service of not just him but all those who served.

As we say in the Royal Canadian Legion, “At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them. We will remember them”. God bless.

Procedure and House Affairs
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

Conservative

Joe Preston Elgin—Middlesex—London, ON

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Orders 104 and 114, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the first report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs regarding membership of committees of the House.

Procedure and House Affairs
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

10:15 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Pursuant to order made on Wednesday, March 3, 2010, the report is deemed adopted.

Procedure and House Affairs
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Bloc

Serge Ménard Marc-Aurèle-Fortin, QC

Mr. Speaker, I feel extremely confident about asking the House for unanimous consent to pass a motion. I know of not a single member of the House who does not believe that we should eliminate the provisions that allow people sentenced to jail time to walk away after serving just one-sixth of their sentence, particularly when the courts have recently handed down some of the harshest sentences for some of the most serious frauds ever committed in Canada and when the media are suggesting to everyone that they should divide those numbers by six. The purpose of Bill C-434 is to eliminate two little provisions in existing legislation. That is why it is one of the shortest bills ever.

I therefore request the unanimous consent of the House to adopt the following motion:

That, notwithstanding any Standing Order or usual practice of the House, Bill C-434, An Act to amend the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (day parole — six months or one sixth of the sentence rule), be deemed to have been read a second time and referred to a Committee of the Whole, deemed considered in Committee of the Whole, deemed reported without amendment, deemed concurred in at the report stage and deemed read a third time and passed.

Consent would demonstrate the unanimous desire of the House to get rid of these provisions as quickly as possible.

Procedure and House Affairs
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

Does the hon. member for Marc-Aurèle-Fortin have the unanimous consent of the House to move this motion?

Procedure and House Affairs
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

No.

Procedure and House Affairs
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

There is no consent.

Child Pornography
Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36 and as certified by the Clerk of Petitions, I am pleased to present a petition on behalf of a number of my constituents who are concerned with the issue of child pornography.

The petitioners would like to draw to the attention of the House that the creation, use and circulation of child pornography are condemned by a clear majority of Canadians, and that the CRTC and Internet service providers have the responsibility for the content that is being transmitted to Canadians, and that anyone who uses the Internet to facilitate any sex offences involving children is committing an offence.

The petitioners call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to stop the Internet as a medium for the victimization of children and the distribution of child pornography.

Postal Service
Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Conservative

Inky Mark Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette, MB

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present two petitions on behalf of the people of Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette.

The first petition calls on the government to instruct Canada Post to maintain, expand and improve postal services.

Hunting, Trapping and Fishing Heritage
Petitions
Routine Proceedings

10:20 a.m.

Conservative

Inky Mark Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette, MB

Mr. Speaker, the second petition calls on the House to enact Bill C-222, an act to recognize and protect Canada's hunting, trapping and fishing heritage, to ensure that the rights of present and future Canadians to enjoy these activities are protected.