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House of Commons Hansard #139 of the 35th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was young.

Topics

Tobacco ActGovernment Orders

1:55 p.m.

Reform

Keith Martin Reform Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, certainly there were quite a few questions in there. I will hit them one after another.

First, contrary to what my hon. friend said, the export tax did work. In 1992 the Conservative government of the day put forth an $8 export tax on tobacco. Within six weeks smuggling decreased 70 per cent. What did the government do in response to pressure from the tobacco companies? It put its tail between its legs and removed the tax. The tax did work.

Second, this government earmarked $64 million for education. Less than 10 per cent has actually been spent on tobacco education. Where the other $54 million went only the government knows. Most likely it went into the general revenues. What is certain is that it did not go to where it was supposed to go; again another broken promise by this government, compromising the health and welfare of Canadian children.

Tobacco ActGovernment Orders

1:55 p.m.

The Speaker

It being 2 p.m. we will now proceed to Statements by Members.

ImaxStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Janko Peric Liberal Cambridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, during a special ceremony on March 1, Cambridge resident Bill Shaw received an Oscar from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences for the technological development of IMAX.

While studying at the Galt Collegiate Institute, Robert Kerr and Graeme Ferguson, together with Bill Shaw, came up with the idea of a large screen format motion picture. Following their first IMAX type film at Montreal's Expo '67, 148 IMAX theatres have opened worldwide and more than 100 IMAX films have been produced, making the company one of the largest grossing motion picture theatres in North America.

The IMAX success story shows that Canadians can not only compete but lead in the high technology sector.

Liberal Party Of CanadaStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Bloc

Maurice Bernier Bloc Mégantic—Compton—Stanstead, QC

Mr. Speaker, as the election approaches, the federal troops in Quebec are panicking. The proof is that a provincial Liberal, Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, is supporting the present Conservative member for Sherbrooke, with the blessing of the Liberal ministers of finance, intergovernmental affairs, and citizenship and immigration.

The electoral message sent to the Quebec people by federalists is therefore the following one: "Do not vote on the basis of the ideas presented by the federalist parties, because in the end, Liberal or Conservative, it boils down to the same thing. You must vote against the Bloc Quebecois".

What federalists fear most is that Quebecers will once again rise up, as they did in 1993, and take real power for themselves by voting for the Bloc Quebecois, the only federal party devoted to the defence of Quebec's interests until sovereignty is achieved.

When provincial Liberals start supporting federal Conservative candidates, it means that the federal Liberal Party, the head office, as the Prime Minister so often says in this House, has quite simply lost control of its provincial branch offices.

The JazscatsStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Reform

Dale Johnston Reform Wetaskiwin, AB

Mr. Speaker, every musician dreams of performing in New York's famous Carnegie Hall. For most it remains just a dream, but not for members of the Wetaskiwin Composite High School's vocal jazz band ensemble, the JazScats.

For one week next February New York City will eclipse New Orleans as the jazz capital of the United States. Ten of the best student jazz ensembles from Canada and the U.S. have been invited to participate in the second annual North American Vocal Jazz Extravaganza.

The Wetaskiwin students will give two solo appearances in Carnegie Hall and then join the other groups for the grand finale. While in New York the ensemble will take part in special workshops and give concerts.

This prestigious honour would not have been possible if not for the dedication and hard work of the ensemble's music director,Mr. Paul Sweet. Our congratulations go to all these dedicated young musicians.

Community ClubsStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Bill Blaikie NDP Winnipeg—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, Park City West Community Club in my riding was audited by Revenue Canada and found to be in arrears to the tune of over $10,000 on the basis of not having charged and remitted GST on registrants in sports programs for people 15 years of age and older.

I object to the policy of charging GST on these programs. I even more strongly object to demanding of a community club run by volunteers that it comes up with this kind of money.

At a time when we hear so much from the government about dealing with youth crime and other related issues, it beats me why we should be penalizing community clubs and making sports activities more costly for Canadian families with teenagers.

I call on the Liberals to change this policy before other community clubs are hurt as well. Get tough on the big corporations for a change; pick on somebody your own size.

ResearchStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Ted McWhinney Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Mr. Speaker, Dr. David Strangway, who has just been admitted as an officer of the Order of Canada, retires this summer after more than a decade

as president of the University of British Columbia, having directed the expansion of the university's advanced research in science, medicine, biology, engineering and related disciplines to a position of leadership in North America, all this in close co-operation with business and industry.

Pure research in the university has yielded extra community dividends in export industries and in the skilled professional jobs emerging with that.

The federal government's budget announcing the creation of a Canadian foundation for innovation and marked expansion of existing federal programs for networks of centres of excellence and industrial research assistance reflects the work already done in our universities in investing in knowledge, in advanced research and education, and in students and teachers as a key to our economic well-being in the next century.

International Women's DayStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Augustine Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, March 8 is International Women's Day. I am proud of the accomplishments the government has made in the sphere of women's issues. Let me name a few.

Bill C-72 made a defence of self-induced intoxication a thing of the past. We passed approximately 100 Criminal Code amendments to deal with women's concerns. The witness protection program provides safety for women who come forward and report crimes. Amendments have been made to the Criminal Code to prosecute Canadians who travel abroad and sexually exploit children. There are tougher laws against those who exploit juvenile prostitutes and those who stalk their victims, and tougher laws to protect the public from sexual offenders.

We listened to Justice Arbour's report on prison reform. We formed a partnership with the Canadian Association of Broadcasters to wage a public campaign against violence against women.

Our health strategy is responsive to women's health. The national health forum devoted a section to women's health and we are listening to its recommendations. Prenatal nutrition programs, research funds for children, the strategic initiative program and the concerns-

International Women's DayStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Bramalea-Gore-Malton.

HousingStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Gurbax Malhi Liberal Bramalea—Gore—Malton, ON

Mr. Speaker, thousands of low income families in Ontario and across Canada depend on social housing.

Yesterday the government reached its first agreement with the province on the transfer of the administration of social housing. However in Ontario the Tory government wants to shift responsibility for social housing to the municipalities.

I ask the Minister of Public Works and Government Services to reaffirm our commitment to quality, affordable social housing. Among Canada's neediest families social housing is a necessity, not a luxury, so the government must preserve it.

TobaccoStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Yves Rocheleau Bloc Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, given the imminent passage of the tobacco bill, I wish to speak out against the behaviour of the hon. member for Saint-Maurice and Prime Minister of Canada, who will become known as one of the people with the primary responsibility for the first class funeral of such events as the Trois-Rivières Grand Prix.

In fact, it will remain in the collective memory that, despite massive mobilization on a number of fronts, particularly from people in his own region who fear for their jobs, the Prime Minister continues to unfeelingly turn a deaf ear to these calls for help.

In 1993, the Liberals managed to convince the people in Saint-Maurice that they would benefit, as would the people in their entire region, and Quebec as a whole, from the Prime Minister's actions. Today, like the rest of us, they see that the end result is nothing but profound frustration, because the Prime Minister refuses to react to the negative impact of the anti-sponsorship clauses in his bill.

Fortunately, the people of Saint-Maurice will soon have a chance to make themselves heard, and we have confidence in them.

The DeficitStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Reform

Jay Hill Reform Prince George—Peace River, BC

Mr. Speaker, the people of Prince George-Peace River, especially their children and grandchildren, appreciate that the federal deficit has been reduced.

However I would be remiss if I did not also point out that these same constituents know the Liberal government does not deserve the credit. The taxpayers of Canada do. The government is taking $25 billion more in taxes from them. That brought down the deficit, not government spending cuts.

This sad fact is particularly evident to the people of the isolated northern community of Mackenzie. While their cost of living goes up, the government refuses to reinstate their northern residents deduction.

The Liberals waste billions of dollars on grants and loans to big business yet ignore the needs of northern communities: $144 million to Bombardier but nothing extra to complete paving of the Alaska highway.

Priorities. Why can the government not get it right?

MiningStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Brent St. Denis Liberal Algoma, ON

Mr. Speaker, I acknowledge the tremendous efforts of six pioneers who were inducted on January 22 into the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame located in Elliot Lake in my riding of Algoma.

These Canadians are Robert Boyle, Walter Curlook, Walter Holyk, Alfred Powis, Franklin Spragins and Joseph Tyrrell. Clearly it is through the efforts of people like these that many small and some remote communities are able to enjoy the high technology and environmentally sustainable development associated with mining today.

In particular Walter Holyk provides an excellent example of this pioneering spirit. His innovative theories on the genesis of volcanogenic massive sulphide deposits led to the discovery of the Half Mile deposit in New Brunswick, Nanisivik on Baffin Island and, most notable, the Kidd Creek deposit near Timmins, Ontario. On behalf of all members I congratulate these inductees on their impressive accomplishments.

The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame in Elliot Lake is worth a visit. I invite all members to enjoy this first class site.

ImmigrationStatements By Members

March 6th, 1997 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Stan Dromisky Liberal Thunder Bay—Atikokan, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Canada-U.S. border is one of the longest and friendliest borders in the world. Every year there are over 90 million border crossings at over 500 ports of entry such as border crossings, airports and harbours.

Given this, it is remarkable that so few criminals gain access to our country. This is not by chance, but it is the result of a very effective co-operative effort between Canadian and American law and border officials.

Every year countless lawbreakers are apprehended at ports of entry. Moreover, through efforts such as the joint immigration-RCMP task force initiative and Bill C-44 the government has done much to rid Canada of such undesirables. In 1995-96 over 1,600 criminals were removed from Canada.

The government's enforcement policies and the unique co-operative efforts that exist between Canadian and American law and border officials will continue to protect Canadians.

Employment InsuranceStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Nick Discepola Liberal Vaudreuil, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources Development yesterday gave in to pressures from his Liberal caucus colleagues and announced adjustments to the employment insurance act.

In order to counteract the potential negative effects of the calculation of short work weeks, the government has just launched plans for adjustments in 29 high-employment regions. These will run until November 15, 1998, and two different methods will be used to encourage the unemployed to accept the so-called short work weeks.

In certain regions, the method applied will make it possible to group short weeks together, while in others the method selected will be to exclude these when calculating eligibility for benefits.

The adjustments announced yesterday to the Employment Insurance Act confirm that our primary concern is to encourage people who are out of work to return to the work force.

Status Of WomenStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Maud Debien Bloc Laval East, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Canada Labour Congress revealed that Canada holds an unfortunate record: wages paid women in Canada are the lowest of all the industrialized countries, after Japan. In 1994, women formed the main contingent of the poor.

Employment equity is essential to an egalitarian society. When jobs are increasingly threatened and income security is vital to a changing society, the Liberal government is denying its election promises, cutting social programs dramatically and lowering its unemployment insurance benefits.

The Bloc Quebecois considers that the Liberal government, throughout its mandate, has increased economic disparity, which gives rise to a two tier society where women and children form the majority of the poor and the marginalized.

Esquimalt Defence Research DetachmentStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Keith Martin Reform Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Transport recently announced that federal cuts to British Columbia's research and development had gone too far.

What does the government do? It closes the Esquimalt defence research detachment and moves it to Halifax. This will cost the taxpayer over $5 million per year in lost contracts and $8 million in moving costs. It will decrease British Columbia's research staff to only 1.4 per cent of the national allotment, eliminate our world leading Arctic research facility and decrease our ability to capitalize on far east markets, all this in the year of the government's self-proclaimed year of Asia-Pacific. Even the defence department officials call this a blow to research.

What is the real reason for the closure? It is to coerce the people of Nova Scotia to vote Liberal in the next election.

Once again the government is shafting the people of British Columbia to save its own political hide.

Employment InsuranceStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Dianne Brushett Liberal Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, Canadians have told the government that the new EI legislation is a disincentive to accept small weeks of work. Both employers and employees from all regions have identified this problem.

Under the leadership of the Minister of Human Resources Development we have taken swift action to solve this problem as quickly as possible.

In Cumberland-Colchester where unemployment is greater than 10 per cent and long term jobs are difficult to find, the new adjustment project will enable workers to bundle small weeks.

In other areas workers will be able to exclude small weeks from their calculation of benefits. This will ensure that workers in every region of the country are able to take full advantage of all available work without having their benefits lowered.

I am pleased the government has responded to the needs of part time and seasonal workers. It has ensured that every hour of work counts and that small weeks will no longer result in lower benefits to Canadians.

TobaccoStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Robert Bertrand Liberal Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, the day before yesterday, a number of Bloc members gave us a brilliant demonstration of their talents as public entertainers.

The tobacco companies provided them with a lunch, drinks and entertainment, all free in exchange for their participation in a public demonstration.

How could the Bloc turn down such an appealing offer? Food, drink, photo ops with sports stars and top billing on the evening news, all for free. Compliments of the tobacco companies-

TobaccoStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

I ask members to be very judicious in their choice of words when making statements.

TobaccoOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, there is utter confusion at the present time concerning this weekend's broadcast of the Australian Grand Prix via the CBC and the Sports Network.

On one hand, the spokesperson for Health Canada says that the bill does not prohibit broadcasting of the Australian Grand Prix and other Grand Prix racing events of the season. On the other hand, according to Normand Legault, who has the TV broadcasting rights for the Formula I race, and I quote: "If the bill is passed, Grand Prix events will not be broadcast because cigarette brands sold in Canada appear on the cars and the drivers".

Can the minister tell us whether under the provisions of the bill, it will be possible to televise the Australian Grand Prix on the weekend and whether broadcasts of other Grand Prix events will be allowed, even if the cars carry a logo or brand of a tobacco product?

TobaccoOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Cape Breton—East Richmond Nova Scotia

Liberal

David Dingwall LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I fully understand the position of the hon. member opposite.

Perhaps he might reflect on the fact that the bill presently before the House has not been passed. How can the member opposite make a conclusion when the legislation has not been passed?

TobaccoOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, for someone who in a newspaper referred to legislation as though it had already been passed to say today that since the bill has not been passed, he cannot answer, verges on the frivolous.

Today we will vote on the bill at third reading. Under this bill, will it be possible to broadcast the Australian Grand Prix and other Grand Prix events, yes or no-the question is clear-since his bill happens to deal with these matters? I would ask the minister to be responsible enough to answer my question now.

TobaccoOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Cape Breton—East Richmond Nova Scotia

Liberal

David Dingwall LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, the minister has attempted over the last number of months to be extremely candid with the hon. member opposite. I hope he and members of his party will start to be responsible in terms of the information contained in the bill.

Just so that the hon. member fully understands-and this is about the fifth time people have had to clarify it-I ask him to listen very attentively. Before and after October 1, 1998 the legislation-and I want to be careful here-will not prohibit the broadcasting of sporting events originating in Canada and in other countries including Grand Prix racing.

Even representatives of the firms he stands to support and tries to speak on behalf of knew that information a long time ago.

TobaccoOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the time frame referred to by the minister does not apply to one clause, and if I could say it is clause 31, I would, but I will not, Mr. Speaker.