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House of Commons Hansard #148 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was quebec.

Topics

Peel Regional PoliceStatements By Members

1:50 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Liberal Bramalea—Gore—Malton, ON

Mr. Speaker, on March 7, I had the pleasure of participating in the official opening of the Peel Regional Police community station in the Westwood mall in Malton.

The opening ceremony was organized by the regional municipality of Peel, the Police Services Board and the Peel Regional Police. The community station concept, which was first developed in Japan, allows for more accessible, less intimidating interaction between police officers and the general public. Not only will this station increase citizens' sense of safety and security, it will also enhance the current level of police enforcement in the region.

I encourage the community of Malton to lend its full support and cooperation to officers working at the new station. Only by working together can we continue to maintain good law and order in this country.

Automobile IndustryStatements By Members

1:50 p.m.

Liberal

Nick Discepola Liberal Vaudreuil, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to announce that Richard Gauthier was recently named president of the Federation of Automobile Dealer Associations. He replaces Ken Graydon, who decided to retire after 25 years of loyal service.

Mr. Gauthier brings to FADA over 27 years of experience in the automobile industry, including 14 years as president of Gauthier Pontiac Buick, in Montreal. In 1993, Time Magazine named Mr. Gauthier top dealer in the Montreal region.

FADA represents over 3,000 automobile dealers across Canada, 10 of whom are in my riding of Vaudreuil. As small businesses, they provide jobs for over 100,000 Canadians.

On behalf of all members, congratulations and good luck to Mr. Gauthier.

Greek Independence DayStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

John Cannis Liberal Scarborough Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, on March 25 Canadians of Hellenic descent will be celebrating the anniversary of the liberation of their former homeland from the Ottoman Empire. In 1821, after 400 years of oppression from the Turkish regime, the Hellenes, with the help of heroes such as Lord Byron of England, helped restore freedom to Greece, the birthplace of democracy.

It is my hope that as we enter the next millennium the current provocations and tensions in this region will be completely eliminated. It is my suggestion that both nations should now concentrate on infrastructure and economic development.

The energies of their people, particularly their youth, should be focused on creating a peaceful environment which, in turn, will lead to a prosperous future.

As John Lennon of the Beatles once said, please give peace a chance.

176Th Anniversary Of Greek IndependenceStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Eleni Bakopanos Liberal Saint-Denis, QC

Mr. Speaker, next week, Canadians of Greek origin will be celebrating a very special event, the 176th anniversary of Greek independence, and the establishment of modern-day Greece.

[English]

Canada has recognized the importance Canadians of other origins place on their cultures and traditions and has encouraged all Canadians to take pride in their heritage.

In Montreal, where Greek immigrants began settling at the turn of the century, 1997 marks the 90th anniversary of the establishment of the Hellenic Community of Montreal.

Tens of thousands of Canadians of Hellenic origin as well as other Montrealers will converge in Saint-Denis on Sunday, March 30, in a show of ethnic pride. It will be my honour this year to serve as a co-grand marshall of the independence day parade along with the Mayor of Athens who will be in Canada to finalize plans for the twinning of Montreal and Athens.

On March 25, I invite all members of the House to wish Canadians of Greek origin: Zito i Ellas! Zito o Kanadas!

Racial DiscriminationStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Osvaldo Nunez Bloc Bourassa, QC

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, March 21, is the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Proclaimed in 1966 by the UN, this day commemorates the massacre in South Africa of a group of black demonstrators during a non-violent anti-apartheid protest.

I hope that Quebecers and Canadians will take part in this day to combat racism by developing the values of equity, justice and mutual understanding.

I would like to underscore the exceptional contribution made by ethnocultural communities to Quebec and Canadian society. The riding of Bourassa, which I am proud to represent in the House of Commons, is a good reflection of the pluralistic nature of Quebec.

This day should be an incentive to us to show greater tolerance, open-mindedness and respect for differences.

Canadian Bar AssociationStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Daphne Jennings Reform Mission—Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, it is essential that members of the House of Commons be free to attend their duties and represent their constituents without influence from any outside body or group.

It has been my experience while appearing before the justice committee to witness a letter sent to the chair of the committee and copies distributed to members, apparently for their information, immediately prior to the calling of witnesses speaking in favour of the bill.

This letter bore the letterhead of the Canadian Bar Association and the signature of a lawyer who was the chair of the national family law section.

This letter gave misleading information to the committee members and strongly urged the members to defeat the bill. I know that this was not an isolated circumstance.

My concern is the influence the Canadian Bar Association appears to have on legislation in this House. In this case, for example, I believe that since most of the justice committee members were also members of the Canadian Bar Association, they were placed in a questionable position, maybe even conflict of interest.

Who is in charge of this country, elected members of Parliament or the Canadian Bar Association?

Canada Council For The ArtsStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Pat O'Brien Liberal London—Middlesex, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate the Canada Council for the Arts on its 40th anniversary. Over these last 40 years the council has provided funding for artists and arts organizations throughout the country in all fields of creative work.

Through its programs and funding the council has helped this country to grow and flourish. Canada is now renowned internationally for its cultural excellence, and its artists and arts organizations compete favourably in markets abroad.

The arts community is a dynamic force in Canada's social and economic life. It is the basis for our film, sound recording, publishing and broadcasting industries.

Several of Canada's artists who have enjoyed support from the Canada Council for the Arts are in the House audience today.

I acknowledge and salute them and all other artists in Canada who have made and are making an enormous contribution to the great nation that Canada is today.

Journée Internationale De La FrancophonieStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Ben Serré Liberal Timiskaming—French-River, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to say that today, March 20, Canadians and thousands of other people throughout the world are celebrating the French language.

The Francophonie plays a vital role in Canada. One Canadian in four has French as his or her mother tongue, while one in three can speak that language.

Because of its linguistic duality, Canada is one of many French speaking countries, while also a member of the Commonwealth. For that reason, Canada, in co-operation with the participating governments of Quebec and New Brunswick, maintains a special relationship with close to one hundred countries, half of which are French speaking nations.

As a member of the Francophonie, Canada is proud to show its national identity at the international level.

I would like members of this House to take this opportunity-

Journée Internationale De La FrancophonieStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

The Speaker

I am sorry, but the hon. member's time is up. The hon. member for Essex-Windsor has the floor.

RacismStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Whelan Liberal Essex—Windsor, ON

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, March 21, is the international day for the elimination of racial discrimination.

The multicoloured bow that I am wearing, the harmony ribbon, is the symbol of the international day for the elimination of racial discrimination, designed by the Multicultural Council of Windsor and Essex County. The harmony ribbon is worn as a visible symbol of the mutual respect and understanding that we have for one another and as a sign of our desire to live in a community that is free from racism and discrimination.

The colours of the ribbon, green for the land and blue for the sky and ocean, represent our unity as citizens of earth. Red roses represent love, respect and courage. Together they symbolize the beauty and harmony created when our diverse community comes together.

The Multicultural Council of Windsor and Essex County has played a long and active role in working to ensure a society that is multi-racial, multi-ethnic, multi-faith and free from all forms of racism and discrimination.

Each year the multicultural council hosts the Carousel of Nations Festival celebrating the diverse multicultural character of Canada.

I encourage all Canadians to get involved. Working together, we can eliminate racial discrimination.

Journée Internationale De La FrancophonieStatements By Members

March 20th, 1997 / 2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Philippe Paré Bloc Louis-Hébert, QC

Mr. Speaker, today, March 20, is the Journée internationale de la Francophonie. The Francophonie includes 134 million French speaking people living in 49 countries, on all five continents.

French has been celebrated for 20 years. It all began when the ministers and chiefs of French speaking delegations attending an extraordinary session of the General Conference of the Agence de coopération culturelle et technique, in Paris, proclaimed March 20 the Journée mondiale de la Francophonie.

The Francophonie is, to use a line coined by Léopold Senghor, "this integral humanism which is being knit around the world; this symbiosis of dormant energies from all continents, all races, waking up to the new warmth".

The Francophonie is a human force which lives and flourishes on every continent. Let us pursue our efforts to make the Francophonie a haven for peace and solidarity.

Spring On The HillStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Ted White Reform North Vancouver, BC

Mr. Speaker, today, as I hope all members realize, is the first day of spring. Of course, spring always starts in the west where nice weather has ensured that Vancouver's daffodils are already in bloom.

This has made it possible for B.C.'s most listened to radio station, CKNW-98, to provide members with close to 300 of those beautiful daffodil blooms.

Yes, that is compliments of CKNW. Canadians know good weather and it is all on the west coast, which also happens to be the leader in federal political trends, good common sense and fresh starts.

Members of the House have probably already received their blooms from the Sergeant-at-Arms. If they have not, there is plenty more in the lobby.

To the House, a happy first day of spring from Vancouver, from CKNW and from co-sponsor General Paints.

The Member For Argenteuil-PapineauStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Robert Bertrand Liberal Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, at the PQ convention in November 1996, the hon. member for Argenteuil-Papineau spoke in support of a resolution asking the PQ government to support the restoration of all national and international flights to Mirabel, and to complete its transportation infrastructure.

Quebec minister Serge Ménard opposed the Bloc member for Argenteuil-Papineau, and the resolution was readily defeated.

Last weekend, the same Bloc member submitted to his party's convention an emergency resolution so watered down that it represented no threat or obligation for the PQ, which meant that it readily passed.

The hon. member for Argenteuil-Papineau was justified last November in calling for the PQ government to come out in favour of Mirabel. With the response he received at that time, he now knows who is blocking the development of Mirabel airport.

Silver SevenStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Mac Harb Liberal Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, 94 years ago, the Ottawa Silver Seven won the city of Ottawa's very first Stanley Cup.

In the deciding match, the Silver Seven defeated the Montreal Victorias eight to nothing. That memorable game was played in my riding at the former Dey's skating rink. In all, the Silver Seven played seven Stanley Cup series at the Dey's between 1903 and 1906.

Today in Ottawa Centre a monument will be unveiled to commemorate the cultural and sporting significance of the Dey's skating rink. In 1905 a team from Dawson City travelled nearly 4,000 miles to challenge the Silver Seven for the cup. Members of a Dawson City team re-enacting the adventure will be present at the unveiling.

I congratulate the organizing committee for making this historical commemoration of Canada's greatest sport a big success. Now we can look forward to another Stanley Cup coming to Ottawa in the near future.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Laurier—Sainte-Marie Québec

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe BlocLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we read in The Gazette today that the Department of Canadian Heritage has once again wasted taxpayers' money on propaganda activities. Option Canada, an obscure branch office of the Council for Canadian Unity, obtained $4.8 million between September 24 and December 20, 1995 right in the middle of the referendum campaign.

Can the Prime Minister tell us just what this money was used for?

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Hamilton East Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, the member is certainly aware of the fact that the Government of Quebec-and I have in my hand a copy of the October 11 order in council-gave a total of $4.8 million to the Conseil de la souveraineté du Québec headed by Yves Duhaime, the great friend of the new leader of the official opposition.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Sheila Copps Liberal Hamilton East, ON

And the Government of Quebec declared in this document: "Whereas the government's objective and mission is to advance the cause of Quebec's sovereignty with the people of Quebec-" This was how the government justified spending$4.8 million during the referendum on the sovereignty of Quebec.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Laurier—Sainte-Marie Québec

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe BlocLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Quebec hid nothing. If the member for Hamilton East would like to ask her friend Daniel Johnson to put these questions to the Government of Quebec in the National Assembly, let her do so.

She is the Minister of Canadian Heritage. She manages the public's money. If she could just answer a question from time to time.

Option Canada was incorporated on September 7, 1995. On September 24, 17 days later, the Department of Canadian Heritage gave it $1 million. The following October 2, the day after the writ was issued, with the referendum in full swing, Option Canada received another $2 million from Ottawa.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

It is rare to see the federal bureaucracy act so quickly. Tell that to the artists who are still waiting to hear from the Minister of Canadian Heritage.

Three million in four days is quite something. Does the Prime Minister not find it strange that his government gave millions of dollars in grants to an agency that had just been incorporated?

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Hamilton East Ontario

Liberal

Sheila Copps LiberalDeputy Prime Minister and Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, I would just like to stress the fact that, during the referendum, in an order in council dated October 11, 1995-and later we saw that there were other orders in council-the Government of Quebec handed over a total of $4.8 million to Yves Duhaime to promote the sovereignty of Quebec. This was by order of the Government of Quebec.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Laurier—Sainte-Marie Québec

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe BlocLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, once again, nothing was concealed in Quebec City. That does not seem to be the case here, however.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Yvan Loubier Bloc Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, QC

It is hypocritical.

Canadian UnityOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

We ask the minister one question and she answers another; it is always the same. She is unable to carry out her responsibilities. Besides which, everything the Conseil de la souveraineté did, it did before the referendum period.

But in this case, we do not know. And these grants in 1995-96 from the Department of Canadian Heritage to the Council for Canadian Unity, and its branch office Option Canada, represent22 per cent of the total envelope that was supposed to be set aside for organizations representing official language minority communities.

Does the Prime Minister not find it shocking that money set aside for assistance to official language minority communities in Canada was diverted like this to secretly fund the federalist forces in the no camp during the last referendum campaign, because these expenses were never declared? Even the president of the Council for Canadian Unity was unaware of the existence of Option Canada. It is hard to believe.