Mr. Speaker, I was surprised as I listened to my colleague who expressed concern for the paternalistic aspect of the bill. Then he went to some length to describe exactly what he believed to be some of that paternalism as his point of view. He then expressed that his party would be supporting the bill.
This piece of legislation goes beyond paternalism. While the concept of guidelines is very good, what we have here is a seriously flawed piece of legislation. For example, there is no consideration for additional financial obligations of either parent. There is no consideration for the needs of a child based on age specific requirements. There is no consideration for servicing the debt of the union by either parent. There is no consideration for the assets division of the matrimonial property settlement. There is no recognition of the costs incurred by the unit to maintain dual households. There is no recognition of the costs involved by the non-custodial parent in maintaining access, including travel, long distance telephone, food, clothing and entertainment. I could go on at some length with the very serious flaws in this legislation.
If this is for children as the hon. member has expressed, I would like my hon. colleague to tell me how he believes a child's needs are satisfied, especially when, in the final analysis, there is no provision for direct spending on the children by the non-custodial parent. This means that a parent who totally ignores the children and spends no time and has no expenses for visitation will be treated in exactly the same way as the caring parent who does spend time with the children, who does provide that emotional support for the children in a household. The process absolutely ignores this individual over someone who has spent no time with the children in the household.
I would like my hon. colleague to indicate how he feels that the needs of the children are given due consideration in light of that.