House of Commons Hansard #97 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was refugees.

Topics

Stop Tuberculosis Day
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Joe Daniel Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to highlight Stop Tuberculosis Day. March 24, 2012 is the anniversary of Robert Koch's discovery of the cause of tuberculosis, the bacterium M. tuberculosis. In his time, which was 1882, it was responsible for a third of the deaths of young adults. It is still a killer if found late or untreated.

Last year, tuberculosis resulted in 1.4 million deaths around the world and it is the biggest single killer of people with HIV. This bacteria is not limited to countries in Asia and Africa; it is right here in Canada. Last year there were approximately 300 cases of TB just in Toronto alone and 8 per cent of them lost their lives.

Fortunately, this government has funded $30 million through CIDA to the global fund in support of reducing TB. This will save many lives around the world. I commend the government for its continuing support of stop TB initiatives, such as Taima TB in the north, despite the current economic conditions.

Agriculture
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

François Lapointe Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup, QC

Mr. Speaker, last week, I was fortunate enough to attend the UPA gala in La Pocatière, recognizing excellence in the agricultural community on the South Shore.

The event highlighted the fact that Alfred Boulet, of Saint-François-de-la-Rivière-du-Sud, was inducted into the Quebec Agricultural Hall of Fame. Mr. Boulet has contributed significantly to the development of the Holstein breed.

The title of female farmer of the year went to Hélène Couillard, owner of Fruits et Légumes R.G. in L'Islet.

Roland Morneau, a pork producer from Saint-Roch-des-Aulnaies, was recognized as farmer of the year.

The Bard family, from La Pocatière, who have been farming the same land for four generations, received the title of farming family of the year.

Claire Lajoie won the people's choice award. She heads the Syndicat des agricultrices de la Côte-du-Sud and more recently became the vice-president of the UPA de la Côte-du-Sud.

I wish to pay tribute to all the winners, including those whom I did not have time to name here today. Your hard work and courage will be a great source of inspiration for me and my colleagues when, unfortunately, we have to defend here in this House concepts as important as supply management and food self-sufficiency.

Ruth and Naomi's Mission
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Mark Strahl Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon, BC

Mr. Speaker, last month I was pleased to join over 400 people at the grand opening of the new Ruth and Naomi's Mission building in Chilliwack. Ruth and Naomi's Mission got started eight years ago when Ann and Ted Stoker felt called to reach out and help the homeless and others struggling to make ends meet. They wanted to address their physical and spiritual needs by providing them with a warm meal, a safe place to sleep and to show them that they had value as individuals.

After outgrowing their temporary facilities, Ann and Ted and many others took action. They did not start writing grant applications, they did not look for a handout from government. They brought people together from dozens of local churches and the business community; they raised money, found volunteers and overcame the various obstacles they encountered along the way. The result is a beautiful new facility that will serve the less fortunate in our community for years to come.

I congratulate everyone who played a part in making this dream a reality. May God richly bless them and those they serve.

World Water Day
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Mr. Speaker, I want to draw the attention of the House to World Water Day, which is one week from today on March 22.

Since its inception nearly 20 years ago, World Water Day has provided the opportunity for the world's citizens and their governments to reflect on the universal and vital importance of water. This year there is positive news to celebrate and ongoing challenges to address.

The United Nations recently announced that one of the millennium development goals, namely, the goal of cutting in half the number of people worldwide without access to safe drinking water, has been met five years early. Yet, sadly, there remain many first nations communities right here in Canada that still lack basic access to safe drinking water.

The federal, provincial and municipal governments must ensure responsible management of fresh water, which is essential to our identity, our environment and our economy, as well as to the health of Canadians.

As World Water Day approaches, I call on all members of the House to commit to working together to make the protection of Canada's most vital resource a national priority.

Donald Gordon
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Bev Shipley Lambton—Kent—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, the community of Wallaceburg is mourning the recent passing of a great Canadian, Donald Gordon, most affectionately known as “Chip” or “Mr. Wallaceburg”.

A former member of the Chatham-Kent Council, Chip was the driving force behind the Wallaceburg Antique Motor and Boat outing for over 20 years. His efforts as a community and sports booster were legendary. Chip was a man of unbridled enthusiasm and tireless energy. He never started or ended a conversation without a joke, a quip or a pun, but as a man of humble means, he possessed untold wealth in friendships and goodwill. His lone fault was an inability to say no to anyone needing a helping hand.

Chip will be missed, but his legacy of community service will live on in the thousands of people he helped along life's journey. I ask the House to join me in extending our sympathy to his wife Darlene, daughter Heather and son Donald Jr.

International Day of La Francophonie
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Robert Aubin Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, throughout the month of March, francophones around the world are celebrating their language, culture and values. Canada is obviously very proud to be part of the Francophonie and to contribute to the dissemination of the French language and francophone culture and values.

Today, being a member of the Francophonie is not about recognizing the travels of Cartier or Samuel de Champlain; it is about getting involved with other countries in essential missions such as the consolidation of the rule of law, peace, gender equality, sustainable development and solidarity, beginning with the francophone community and extending to the entire international community. All members of the NDP from coast to coast, wish to participate in these great missions of the Francophonie, and will be especially vigilant in ensuring that the current government respects its commitments.

Speaking of commitments, we will also ensure that the Government of Canada's commitments with regard to defending and promoting official language minority communities, mostly francophone communities, are reflected in the budgets of the various departments.

I call on all francophones and francophiles to celebrate the Francophonie together on March 20, both at home and abroad.

Ukraine
Statements By Members

March 15th, 2012 / 2:05 p.m.

Conservative

James Bezan Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, I call on the Ukrainian government to respect the democratic wishes of the Ukrainian people and stop its politically motivated attacks against its opposition.

Last week the foreign affairs committee heard from expert witnesses who confirmed that the situation in Ukraine continues to worsen, with the erosion of human rights, freedoms and democracy.

Former primer minister Yulia Tymoshenko is currently in prison, where she is reportedly in poor health and is being denied the medical attention she needs. I would like to thank the Canadian doctors who visited Ms. Tymoshenko in February.

Former minister of interior Yuriy Lutsenko was recently sentenced to four years in prison as part of the Ukrainian government's ongoing pursuit to silence the opposition.

These convictions are a miscarriage of justice and are nothing but show trials. I call on President Yanukovych to restore the rule of law and judicial independence in Ukraine.

The Ukrainian government's blatant gerrymandering of the election laws prove that there must be international election monitoring for Ukraine's upcoming parliamentary elections. Canada and the world are watching and continue to strongly state that President Yanukovych's actions will not be tolerated.

Nik Zoricic
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Ted Opitz Etobicoke Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is with sadness that I rise in the House to today to remember Nik Zoricic, 29-year-old Canadian ski cross star. Nik had a catastrophic accident while competing in a World Cup ski cross race in Grindelwald, Switzerland. His family home is located in my riding of Etobicoke Centre.

A pioneer in Canadian ski cross, Nik had a stellar future before him. Prior to his untimely passing, Nik had been working toward earning a place on Canada's Olympic ski cross team.

Last Sunday, Nik's Canadian teammates, friends, coaches and competitors from the World Cup ski cross community skied down the same course that claimed Nik's life. They all wore jeans in a touching tribute to the jeans Nik wore during his first World Cup ski cross race four years ago.

On behalf of all parliamentarians and all Canadians, I extend the condolences and sympathies of this House to Nik's parents, Silvia and Bebe Zoricic, and the whole of the Zoricic family.

Nik's fun-loving attitude, passion and competitive dedication will be missed by Canadian sports enthusiasts and the ski cross community in particular.

Antonio Silipo
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Olivia Chow Trinity—Spadina, ON

Mr. Speaker, today we mourn the loss of Antonio Silipo.

First elected as a school trustee at the Toronto Board of Education, Tony Silipo embarked on his political career to ensure that all children, especially those from immigrant families, had equal opportunities to reach their highest academic performance. Tony Silipo continued that passion as the chair of the Toronto Board of Education, and then as the Ontario minister of education.

Tony sought to protect the most vulnerable during a severe economic downturn when he became the minister of community and social services in 1993.

We are immensely grateful that Tony, a life-long New Democrat, dedicated his life to public service. May his legacy continue through the scholarship in his name at the Toronto District School Board.

On behalf of Canada's New Democrats, we wish to extend our deepest condolences to Tony's wife, Anne Marie, his son, Adrian, and all members of his extended family.

Science and Technology
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Wai Young Vancouver South, BC

Mr. Speaker, earlier this week, the Minister of State for Science and Technology further delivered on our government's commitment to research and development. He announced 132 newly awarded or renewed Canada research chairs, to attract and retain the world's best researchers right here in Canada.

With this funding, our researchers will continue making advances in disease prevention and treatment, information technology, and genetics, to name only a few.

Our government has made investments in science and technology across the board, from basic research and discovery all the way through to commercialization.

Canadians can count on our government to continue investing in science and technology to create jobs, grow our economy and improve the quality of life of Canadians.

International Day of La Francophonie
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, on March 20 we will celebrate the International Day of La Francophonie, a UN day of observance that celebrates the French language.

La Francophonie is made up of more than 220 million French speakers worldwide. In Canada, more than 9.5 million people speak French. North America's Francophonie originated in Acadia and is now found across the country.

Canada's Francophonie is enriched by francophone newcomers from around the world who contribute to Canada's economic and cultural development. Did you know that French is an official language in 36 countries?

As Jack Layton pointed out, “Canada’s varied and unique francophone communities have made an invaluable contribution to Canadian society. Over time, these communities have helped shape our identity as a country, something we are very proud of.”

The NDP wishes you a happy International Day of La Francophonie on March 20 and invites you to discover or rediscover the beauty of the French language all year round.

Iran
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Robert Sopuck Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette, MB

Mr. Speaker, reports suggest that Iran is courting Canadian aboriginal leaders, offering to fly a group of Manitoba chiefs to Tehran under the mantle of care and concern.

We all know what this is really about. This is about channel changes, distractions and continued deception by Iran's leaders on real matters of human rights.

Iran has a deplorable record in this area. Its treatment of women, religious minorities and others is simply horrific. That it would attempt to lecture a country like ours on human rights is truly delusional.

The Iranian regime's continued failure to address its own internal shortcomings borders on the criminal. This same Iranian regime is now attempting to exploit Canadian aboriginal leaders and feign concern as part of another PR stunt to distract from its own abhorrent record.

We hope that the aboriginal leaders in question will not allow themselves to be used as pawns in this pathetic game the Iranians are playing.

Redpath Museum
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marc Garneau Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, this year marks the 130th anniversary of the Redpath Museum at McGill University in Montreal.

The Redpath Museum opened in 1882 and was the first museum dedicated to the study of the diversity of our biological, geological, and cultural heritage. The faculty, staff and students of the Redpath Museum are active in scientific research, the study of collections and education at all levels.

To mark the museum's 130th year, the students of the Redpath Museum Club have published a book entitled Beyond the Roddick Gates celebrating the history of the museum.

The Redpath Museum is an important public resource that welcomes tens of thousands of visitors every year, who come to see its exhibits, attend conferences and take part in its bilingual public programming. As set out in its original charter in 1882, the museum is free for the general public.

I wish the Redpath Museum a happy birthday.

Liberal Party of Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Ed Komarnicki Souris—Moose Mountain, SK

Mr. Speaker, we all know that Liberals can engage in underhanded, sleazy tricks, whether it is making illegal or improper election phone calls in Guelph or, in this case, using taxpayer-funded House of Commons resources to smear the Minister of Public Safety.

They have even gone so far as to engage their go-to, soft on crime lawyer to try to make sure that Adam Carroll does not attend the ethics committee to tell Canadians who was behind this smear.

The fact is that Parliament has the absolute authority to send for persons when it sees fit. This is not limited by any sense of Liberal entitlement or otherwise. Adam Carroll must attend as soon as possible to tell the committee who ordered him to post this information, what the Liberals knew about this and when they knew.

Indeed, all Canadians have a right to know the full extent of Liberal involvement and what they knew.

National Defence
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Matthew Kellway Beaches—East York, ON

Mr. Speaker, in March of last year the Prime Minister described the F-35s as the “only option available” to replace our CF-18s.

Apparently not. Two days ago at the defence committee the Associate Minister of National Defence said that it was not clear if they would actually purchase the F-35. He then added, “...we have not as yet discounted the possibility...of backing out of” the program. Finally, he admitted to an active search for alternatives to the F-35.

The crusade is in full retreat. What the Conservatives had once described as all that is “holy and decent” is now clearly a matter of mismanagement and, ultimately, duplicity.

Our troops deserve better than this gross incompetence. Canadians deserve a transparent and responsible government. We know that means an NDP government in 2015, but in the meantime it is clearly time to take this file out of the hands of the flip-flopping minister and put this contract out to tender.