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House of Commons Hansard #23 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was samples.

Topics

2 p.m.

The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada , and we will be led by the hon. member for Halton.

ClearnetStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

John Cannis Liberal Scarborough Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the company whose headquarters have just relocated to my riding of Scarborough Centre.

Clearnet is a Canadian controlled and managed company which is on the leading edge of wireless communications. In just three short years Clearnet has increased its employment by more than six times to well over 1,000 employees and is expected to create several thousand more jobs across Canada.

This company's success is an example of what our government hopes will be the future for all Canadians in the next millennium. Our commitment to invest in knowledge based economies such as telecommunications will help success stories like Clearnet become the norm. Keeping Canada and Canadians on the leading edge is our ultimate goal.

Not only do I want to welcome Clearnet, but I congratulate it on its tremendous success which I hope will continue in the future.

Canadian Wheat BoardStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Reform

Charlie Penson Reform Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, it looks like the minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board has a death wish for the board. How else can we explain his erratic behaviour? Let us review the facts which go back several years.

Farmers are unhappy and want change so the minister hand picks a committee to make recommendations. When he does not like the recommendations, he asks for direct consultation. He asks people to write him. He does not like that either. Then he holds a plebiscite but he does not ask the question that captures the debate in the farming community. Then he introduces Bill C-72, a bill that nobody likes. It dies on the Order Paper. Then the phoenix that rises from the ashes is even worse. In the new bill, Bill C-4, he has made provisions to include commodities such as canola, oats and flax that are not presently under the jurisdiction of the board.

Just when you think it cannot get any worse, it does. If there is anything that is going to cause the Canadian Wheat Board to die, it is a minister who has shown how little he understands about what farmers want.

Terry Fox RunStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, once again this year Canadians and people around the world took part in Terry Fox runs to support cancer research. In Peterborough riding, runs in Havelock, Lakefield and Peterborough itself raised thousands of dollars. So once again did inmates of the Warkworth Institution.

But this year as last, our high schools deserve special mention. Nine schools, among them St. Peters, Crestwood, PCVS, Lakefield, Norwood and Bethany Hills raised more than $130,000 and beat last year's record of $118,000. St. Peter's alone raised $40,000. Crestwood is the leading high school in Canada for Terry Fox contributions during the last decade.

When Terry passed through Peterborough city and county 17 years ago, he could not have imagined the outpouring of good he was triggering. Our thanks to all those who take part in Terry Fox runs around the world.

Canadian General-Tower LimitedStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Janko Peric Liberal Cambridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadian General-Tower of Cambridge, a leading North American manufacturer of vinyl car interiors and other vinyl products, today received the Environmental Management Award from the Financial Post . CGT's environmental management plan impacts on every decision that is made from the top of the company through to the plant floor.

A founding sponsor of the Ontario Children's Groundwater Festival, Canadian General-Tower is a company with vision, a company with pride in its home community of Cambridge and above all a company always ready to face challenges and to lead by example. I congratulate CGT on this and its many other achievements. I also welcome Mr. Gord Chaplin to the House today.

Child LabourStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Maud Debien Bloc Laval East, QC

Mr. Speaker, a meeting is being held this week in Oslo, where ministers, and leaders of labour organizations and NGOs are discussing the serious problem of child labour.

Representatives of more than 40 countries will be trying to find solutions to the most serious forms of child labour: slavery, prostitution and unsafe work. The Bloc Quebecois salutes and fully supports this endeavour.

The Bloc Quebecois is aware that forced child labour is primarily the consequence of poverty and underdevelopment. The drastic cuts to government aid to development imposed by the Liberal government are not likely to lead to any improvement in this situation.

We call upon the government to act promptly to follow up on the report by the Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade on the exploitation of child labour and to conclude development pacts to eliminate what we consider a blot on the record of humanity.

Royal Canadian LegionStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Lynn Myers Liberal Waterloo—Wellington, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am proud today to rise and advise you of a special occasion which occurred on October 25 and October 26 in New Hamburg, Ontario. The New Hamburg Branch 532 of the Royal Canadian Legion celebrated its 45th anniversary.

The members of this branch are widely recognized for the many hours of community service which they perform each year. In particular their support of minor sports programs is truly exemplary of the important role they play in the development of the community.

On behalf of all constituents of Waterloo—Wellington I wish to commend the New Hamburg Royal Canadian Legion on its record of public service. In particular the 10 continuous and charter members from 1952 to 1997 should be acknowledged for their dedication.

Goods And Services TaxStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Grant McNally Reform Dewdney—Alouette, BC

Mr. Speaker, this Liberal government has begun its second mandate with the mission statement “We never met a tax we did not like”.

One of the first times I ever wrote to a politician was to oppose the GST on what was deemed a luxury item, diaper rash cream for my daughter. My daughter is now seven years old and that GST rash is still burning butts across the country. Now the Prime Minister has adopted that diaper rashed baby as his own and Uncle Brian is smiling.

Last week the government stated that it would turn this lemon into lemonade. All the sugar in Canada cannot make GST lemonade sweet enough for any hardworking Canadian to swallow.

We ask what is next. Tainted HST Kool-Aid?

Iodine Deficiency DisorderStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, October is IDD month. IDD stands for iodine deficiency disorder, which is the single greatest cause of preventable brain damage and mental disability in the world today.

More than 1.5 billion people, including approximately 500 million children, in more than 115 countries are estimated to be at risk of having IDD.

To prevent IDD a person needs just one teaspoon of iodine over a lifetime. Every 5¢ raised will save a life by providing one person iodine in their diet.

Kiwanis International has taken on the challenge of eliminating iodine deficiency disorder by the year 2000. As an honorary member of the Ottawa-Vanier Kiwanis Club, I am proud to be a part of this effort.

We have with us today in the gallery representatives of the Kiwanis movement and on our behalf I welcome them.

Toxic MetalsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Bloc Rosemont, QC

Mr. Speaker, scientific analyses that have been unearthed by Greenpeace indicate that PVC plastic items manufactured for use by children contain dangerous concentrations of two toxic metals: lead and cadmium. The list of such products that can be bought in Quebec and in Canada speaks volumes: toys, rain wear, backpacks, and video game cable coverings.

Lead poisoning is widely recognized as one of the most serious threats to children's health. Exposure to even extremely low doses causes permanent nervous system damage and decreased intelligence.

In this context, how can this government explain that, this very morning, thousands of children went to school carrying toxic backpacks? It is unacceptable for there to be only voluntary measures in this area. The government must take its head out of the sand and concern itself with children's health, not only through the anti-tobacco legislation but also through legislation to protect them from products containing toxic metals.

Quebec PremierStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, you know as well as I do, and as do all members of this House and indeed all Canadians, that our country, Canada, is internationally renowned as a great democratic society.

Like me, you know too that our government is also recognized as a very democratic government. There are great democrats, not so great democrats and, dare I say, petty democrats.

So, when Premier Bouchard attacks the Prime Minister of Canada for deciding to allow a free vote on the proposal to amend section 93 for the Quebec school system, it is clear, and you know it as well as I do, that our Prime Minister is a great democrat and Premier Bouchard a—I don't think I need to finish the sentence.

Liberal FundraisingStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Chuck Strahl Reform Fraser Valley, BC

Mr. Speaker, we have uncovered the top 10 lines used by Liberal fundraisers in their successful efforts to squeeze money from prospective businesses.

Line number 10: If you give it, the cabinet ministers will come.

Line number 9: Never have so many given so much for such obvious rewards.

Line number 8: Come on, everybody is doing it.

Line number 7: The end justifies the means.

Line number 6: It is better to give so that you can receive.

Line number 5: The answer is in the mail and trust me, you will like the answer.

Line number 4: These opportunities usually only come once in a lifetime, although in this case it comes once every time you apply for a grant.

Line number 3: If you think we can be influenced by as little as $3,000 or $4,000, let me tell you this to your face, you are right.

Line number 2: Of course it may be that you will receive the grant without a donation. I mean, anything is possible.

The number one line used by federal fundraisers to squeeze money out of prospective business people: Cheques are fine, but cash is better.

Team Canada Inc.Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Yvon Charbonneau Liberal Anjou—Rivière-Des-Prairies, QC

Mr. Speaker, our government is delivering on its promises with respect to employment support.

In the red book, on page 34, we read that “a new Liberal government will create a Trade Promotion Agency that builds on the Team Canada approach to international business”.

To follow up on this commitment, the Minister of International Trade announced a few days ago a series of new measures to better co-ordinate trade promotion initiatives by Canadian businesses already on the export market or looking to be.

Under the umbrella of Team Canada Inc., all public and private stakeholders interested in exports will form an on-going network, we will have more trade commissioners abroad, and a special small business unit will be established within the department, not to mention the 24 hour a day telephone and computer information services that will be made available.

This is good news for businesses in Canada and in my riding of Anjou—Rivières-des-Prairies, whose growth depends on finding new export opportunities on the international market. This is good news because it will result in job creation.

Liberal PoliciesStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer NDP Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, recently Canadians have been treated to the spectacle of two Atlantic Liberal premiers opposing federal Liberal policies they once supported when they were members of the government.

When he was a member of this House, the premier of Nova Scotia supported the HST. Now that he sees that the HST does not work, he comes to Ottawa with hat in hand asking the finance minister to reduce the HST premiums.

When he was federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans the premier of Newfoundland allowed the department's policy to destroy the livelihood of Newfoundland fishers. Now that he sees how wrong he was, the premier wants the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans to go to Newfoundland to re-examine the early cutoff of the Atlantic groundfish strategy that would devastate fishers in his province.

Given this double flip flop, Canadians now wonder if the present Minister of Fisheries and Oceans or the Minister of Finance ever became the premier of a province whether they would oppose their own policies because they do not work.

Quebec PremierStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Coderre Liberal Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the leader of the Bloc Quebecois' head office, Quebec's premier designate Lucien Bouchard, concluded that the Prime Minister of Canada was washing his hands of the fate of the amendments designed to help establish linguistic school boards in Quebec by allowing a free vote on this issue.

How dishonest, how hypocritical, how heretical on the—

Quebec PremierStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Quebec PremierStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Brandon—Souris.

Food InspectionStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Rick Borotsik Progressive Conservative Brandon—Souris, MB

Mr. Speaker, I rise today on the concerns Canadians have about our food inspections. Consumers need to be assured that the food they eat is as safe as it can be. There are a number of reasons for this cause of concern.

With the creation of the Canada Food Inspection Agency, the government has estimated that it will save $100 million over the next few years, hopefully not at the expense of the consumers.

Recent reports have suggested that food imports arriving at Canada's borders are not being inspected thoroughly enough. The November 1996 auditor general's report stated that the level of inspection activity aimed at different food products may not be consistent with their potential risk to human health.

It is time for the federal government to recognize that there are improvements which should be made to our food inspection. The questions that have been raised about our food inspection system deserve to be examined by a parliamentary committee. The CFIA must take a stronger federal role in the area of food safety.

The Late Chief Justice Nathan NemetzStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Ted McWhinney Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, Nathan, Sonny, Nemetz, who died on October 21 had a distinguished career in the professional practice of law in Vancouver and then served for many years on the Supreme Court of British Columbia being later named as chief justice of the province.

He and equally his wife, Bel Newman, who predeceased him, provided intellectual leadership with a very strong liberal activist bent within the Vancouver Jewish community and also in the more general political and social thinking within the province.

EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Reform Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, Canada is now the only country left in the G-7 that has not revealed its targets for greenhouse gas reductions.

The Kyoto summit is only five weeks away and the Liberals have not made up their minds. If all our trading partners have their act together, surely it is time the Liberals made their position clear on what they will be doing. Canadians taxpayers, environmentalists and the industry need to know.

Why is it that Canadians always have to pay the price for more Liberal cabinet squabbles? When will they produce the real targets?

EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I have nothing to add to what I said yesterday. We are consulting with the provinces and with the stakeholders. We have made a very clear statement that we want our position to be better than the American one. We are working at the same time with other nations to develop a consensus.

We could just grandstand here, but instead we are being very practical in our efforts to find a solution that will be acceptable to everybody in Kyoto. We have to involve both the industrialized nations and the developing nations.

At least we know we want to do something about climate change, but I know the Reform Party has absolutely no interest—

EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Edmonton North.

EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Deborah Grey Reform Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, yes, we are concerned about all these things. The prime minister has already said that they have agreed to sign whatever comes up in Kyoto. They are doing this absolutely backward.

The Kyoto deal reminds Canadians a lot of the failed Meech Lake accord. Back then a bunch of suits got together behind closed doors and decided what would be a constitutional proposal, and no Canadians liked it.

It is the same thing today. The Liberals refuse to wait for the provinces to agree. They refuse to make any proposals public, yet they have guaranteed that they will sign anything that comes forward.

What makes our prime minister think that Canadians would—

EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. prime minister.

EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we are going to Kyoto to negotiate with everybody. At this moment no consensus has been reached at this moment between nations. We are consulting Canadians. We are consulting with people abroad and we want to make progress in Kyoto.

I know the Reform Party has no interest in protecting the environment and has no interest in the problem of climate change around the world.