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House of Commons Hansard #67 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was industry.

Topics

Bilingualism BonusStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Louis Plamondon Bloc Richelieu, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Quebecois applauds the government's decision to finally comply with the Federal Court of Appeal judgment and pay a bilingualism bonus to RCMP members who occupy bilingual positions.

This puts an end to a lengthy dispute between RCMP members and their employer who, must it be reminded, had decided not to provide this bonus, supposedly "to preserve cohesion within the forces".

If it is serious about bilingualism, the government must continue to pay bilingual bonuses inasmuch as it provides true incentive and compensation for the added complexity of bilingual positions.

Considering there is much room for improvement in the federal Public Service, particularly with regards to the use of French, the government must make sure this bonus is awarded for language skills of the highest level to provide services of the highest quality.

Referendum '94Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Ted White Reform North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to report that all aspects of Referendum '94, the world's first electronic referendum, are running on target.

An independent auditor has been appointed to ensure security of the vote and we are in the process of enumerating all North Vancouver high school students for the separate voters list for students.

MT&T Technologies has had representatives in North Vancouver training the volunteers who will handle everything from voter enumeration to getting out the vote in the period of June 15 to 20.

The decision has been made to issue separate secret voter numbers to all MPs. Yes, even the Speaker will be able to vote in this referendum on three suggested changes to the Young Offenders Act.

The time is right. The topic is right. Canadians are about to show the world how Canadian developed technology can be used to run a secure democratic referendum as easily as picking up a touch tone telephone.

Referendum '94Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

That is probably the only vote your Speaker is going to get in this Parliament.

Crime PreventionStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Sue Barnes Liberal London West, ON

Mr. Speaker, today there is widespread concern that our communities are being threatened by youth crime. We should however, divorce perception from reality.

First, we must remember that most youths are law abiding, hard working young people. It is important to recognize that 60 per cent of crimes committed by young people are property crimes. Also, of all violent crimes reported in Canada 86 per cent are committed by adults, not youths.

The Minister of Justice will shortly introduce legislation that will propose specific changes to the Young Offenders Act. Canadians will also be heard by a committee when the legislation undergoes a thorough 10-year review.

The protection of society cannot be achieved solely by amending legislation. It is crucial that we adopt a multi-disciplinary approach to combat the underlying causes of youth crime.

Crime prevention is an important area where our communities can share this responsibility. We must not forget that the home is where most attitudes are first developed.

InfrastructuresStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Patrick Gagnon Liberal Bonaventure—Îles-De-La-Madeleine, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to call the attention of the hon. members of this House to another action taken by our government to stimulate the Canadian economy.

Yesterday, in a joint announcement with the Quebec government, the Minister of National Heritage announced the extension of the Gaz Métropolitain natural gaz pipeline in five regions of Quebec.

The $34 million investment will be part of the Canada-Quebec deal signed under the infrastructure program, a program designed as a cornerstone of our commitment to put Canadians back to work immediately.

This announcement is solid proof that this program is working. The Gaz Métropolitain project will result in 1,820 jobs being created in the Lac-Saint-Jean, Abitibi, Mauricie-Bois-Francs, Laurentian and Estrie regions, which correspond to Bloc Quebecois ridings.

Furthermore, the Gaz Métropolitain pipeline extension will pump $125 million-

South AfricaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Svend Robinson NDP Burnaby—Kingsway, BC

Mr. Speaker, today is a historic day for the people of South Africa and indeed for the world.

We join in celebrating the end of the evil system of apartheid, the election of the first democratic Parliament, an election I had the privilege of observing, and the inauguration of Nelson Mandela as president.

Let us also remember the thousands who have faced exile and death on the long road to freedom, people like Stephen Biko whose grave and family I visited.

Let us pay tribute to all those Canadians who have worked in solidarity with the black majority in South Africa to help make this great day possible.

Most important, let us resolve to do everything in our power to support the new government of South Africa as it seeks to overcome apartheid's legacy and bring jobs, homes, land and peace to that beautiful land.

As Archbishop Desmond Tutu said: "This is a day of liberation for us all, Blacks and Whites together".

Amandla!

Capital PunishmentStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Chuck Strahl Reform Fraser Valley East, BC

Mr. Speaker, three people were cruelly murdered in 1992 in a restaurant in the constituency of Cape Breton-The Sydneys.

When the member for that area was presented with a petition demanding the return of capital punishment signed by 60,000 people, his response was: "We'll give it serious consideration when bills are being drafted".

There are only 66,000 people-

Capital PunishmentStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Don Boudria Liberal Glengarry—Prescott—Russell, ON

Order, order.

Capital PunishmentStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Regina—Wascana, SK

Remember the rules.

Capital PunishmentStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

Order.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Bloc

Lucien Bouchard BlocLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, my question is directed to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Yesterday, after condemning the UN's decision to withdraw its peacekeepers from Rwanda, the minister said that in fact reinforcements should be sent to that country. However, on May 5, the Deputy Prime Minister, who disagreed with the minister, said that she refused to consider the feasibility of sending reinforcements and acting on the request made by the UN Secretary General.

In the case of Haiti, yesterday the minister seemed to support the U.S. proposal to send a UN force, although on May 4 in the House, the minister rejected out of hand the possibility of armed intervention.

My question is this: How does the minister explain this about-face by the government, this change of policy in its approach to the events in Rwanda and Haiti, and are we to understand that in the case of Rwanda, Canada not only supports the secretary general's request for additional peacekeepers but intends to participate personally?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel Québec

Liberal

André Ouellet LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I can inform the Leader of the Opposition there has been no change in policy. The Leader of the Opposition may want to see an element of contradiction, but I think it is a case of wishful thinking on his part.

Both in Rwanda and Haiti, the Government of Canada is pursuing very specific objectives: to persuade the parties to stop killing each other, and to support all humanitarian efforts to help the people in those areas. And in the second case, to bring Jean-Bertrand Aristide, the president in exile, back to Haiti. In both cases, anything we can do in co-operation with our partners and allies will be in line with the government's objectives.

We may have to fine-tune our approach in the weeks to come, but the objectives remain the same, and there has been no change in policy on the part of the government.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Bloc

Lucien Bouchard BlocLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I would be more inclined to use the word "zigzagging" instead of fine-tuning in referring to the government's foreign policy.

I want to ask the minister, who is now mentioning the possibility of armed intervention in Haiti, why on May 4 he said in this House, and I quote: "Canada did not contemplate the possibility of an armed intervention, as we are convinced that stiffer economic sanctions would overcome the military junta"?

What made the government change its mind so that it could now consider sending in the troops instead of maintaining an economic embargo?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel Québec

Liberal

André Ouellet LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I may remind the hon. member that there have been quite a few zigzags in his political career. All things considered, I think-

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Chrétien Liberal Saint-Maurice, QC

Jacques Parizeau now has a wait and see attitude: The wait-and-see attitude is back.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

André Ouellet Liberal Papineau—Saint-Michel, QC

He may call this zigzagging, but I can assure him that the Government of Canada is prepared to do whatever zigzagging it takes to get President Aristide back to his country. With our allies, and more specifically with Haiti's friends, we are pursuing a series of measures to convince the Haitian military that they cannot usurp the government, they cannot keep depriving the people of a democratic government, and that we will continue our efforts, first of all with measures we feel are effective, in other words, a total embargo, to bring back President Aristide.

If this approach is not successful, we will consider the next alternative. For the time being, we have not changed our position, and we continue to believe that total sanctions will be successful as a way to take power away from the military in that country.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Lac-Saint-Jean Québec

Bloc

Lucien Bouchard BlocLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, after asking the Minister of Foreign Affairs about his government's position on international issues, I was somewhat surprised to see him stoop to domestic squabbling. We can assume that the minister who is responsible for the lofty domain of international affairs is never far removed from his partisan concerns.

Does this fine-tuning-to borrow a euphemism from the minister- of the government's approach to foreign affairs mean that Canada has not obtained all the guarantees expected from the Dominican Republic with respect to compliance with the economic embargo and that consequently, the minister is now going back to the American proposal because the total embargo contemplated by the minister is doomed to fail?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Michel Québec

Liberal

André Ouellet LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I want to say to the Leader of the Opposition that in our discussions yesterday with the U.S. ambassador to the UN, we reviewed a series of initiatives that have been taken in order to make sure that President Aristide returns to Haiti.

It is quite clear that if we want to follow the agreement of Governors Island, at some point there will have to be the return of police forces to assist in re-establishing democracy in Haiti.

I suspect that the hon. member is misinterpreting when he talks about forces. We are not talking about military forces. We are talking about police forces that should go back to Haiti. I draw this to his attention.

Clearly our objective is to implement the Governors Island agreement. Canada is fully supportive of this. We have been in the forefront in making sure that sanctions are applied and that total sanctions are imposed by the UN. We are quite pleased that diplomacy and our representations now have the full support of the American government.

Mil Davie ShipyardOral Question Period

May 10th, 1994 / 2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Beauport—Montmorency—Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister. In mid-June, the second to last frigate will be completed and 700 workers will be laid off at MIL Davie. In November, the frigate program will end and there will only be 80 employees left, who will maintain the shipyard. At best, if the Magdalen Islands ferry is built, construction would begin in February 1995 at the earliest. The government has everything it needs to make a decision, including MIL Davie's business plan.

Is the Prime Minister aware that his government's inexplicable slowness in making a decision on the islands ferry and the "smart" ship is doing serious harm to the Lauzon shipyard and making thousands of workers who are waiting for a decision lose all hope?

Mil Davie ShipyardOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Acadie—Bathurst New Brunswick

Liberal

Douglas Young LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, as announced in the House this week, MIL Davie's business plan was filed only last week.

The hon. member rightly says that everyone is concerned about the future of the MIL Davie shipyard, but surely building the ferry for the run between Prince Edward Island and the Magdalen Islands will not be enough to keep MIL Davie going.

I wish to assure my colleague that the Government of Canada is trying to co-operate on this issue, but besides the recovery program for MIL Davie based on its business plan, financing would have to be found both for the ferry and for the "smart" ship. We are all concerned with this issue and we are trying to work as quickly as possible.

Nevertheless, we should point out that the financial plan was submitted only last week, as an opposition member indicated earlier this week.

Mil Davie ShipyardOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Guimond Bloc Beauport—Montmorency—Orléans, QC

Mr. Speaker, could the Prime Minister tell us how many more people will have to be laid off before the government makes a decision on construction of the ferry at MIL Davie?

Mil Davie ShipyardOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Acadie—Bathurst New Brunswick

Liberal

Douglas Young LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, nobody wants to see shipyard workers laid off. Practically all Canadians across the country know what happened in the shipbuilding industry in British Columbia, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Quebec. We know full well that we must try to maintain an industry that is important to Quebec and Canada.

However, in a project such as this, we must ensure that not only is the business plan tabled, but also that the financial

statements are in order, and that shipbuilding has a viable future not only for the shipyard but especially for the workers.

We are all working on this. We met with Quebec ministers. We are now trying to find the financial resources needed to arrive at the solution that I am sure my hon. colleague would like to see as soon as possible.

Young Offenders ActOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Reform

Preston Manning Reform Calgary Southwest, AB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister.

On Mother's Day a number of us attended justice rallies in Edmonton and Calgary. These were held to commemorate the deaths of Barb Danelesko, the young Edmonton mother who was murdered in her home by young offenders, and to demand action to reform the justice system and address the roots of crime.

While the government has assured Canadians it is studying these problems and working on amendments to relevant legislation, the public is crying out for action now.

Is there not some element of the government's criminal justice reform package that it could bring forward now for passage before the summer recess, at least as a symbol that the government is capable of acting swiftly on this major public concern?