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House of Commons Hansard #151 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was aboriginal.

Topics

Kuala Lumpur Apec MeetingOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Winnipeg South Centre Manitoba

Liberal

Lloyd Axworthy LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I thank the very astute member for his question.

When the Prime Minister made the announcement he indicated a process that really began in Vancouver to enlist the participation of civil groups. That has been followed by the active role of the minister of state for women's affairs in leading a ministerial delegation to ensure that women are fully engaged in the APEC process.

The Minister for International Trade and I will be taking an initiative in Malaysia to ensure that civil society is brought into the APEC process so there can be full and broad—

Kuala Lumpur Apec MeetingOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Lakeland.

AgricultureOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Reform

Leon Benoit Reform Lakeland, AB

Mr. Speaker, the minister of agriculture said on national TV that we cannot plan for the crisis that we have in agriculture right now. Well, we can plan.

Starting with the 1993 election campaign and then the debate leading up to the abolishment of the Crow benefit, legislation the government passed in 1995, Reform called for part of the value of the Crow benefit to go into a fund that would help farmers deal with these tough times. It would compensate farmers for a loss in value due to unfair trade practices. That is exactly what is happening now.

What will the minister do now to deal—

AgricultureOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. minister of agriculture.

AgricultureOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, the federal government put $600 million a year into the safety net envelope for planning for these types of unfortunate situations. The provincial governments put in $400 million a year and the Canadian producers also add to that and in the NISA account receive a very good arrangement with that.

We are planning now to deal with the unfortunate situation we are in. But contrary to the member's party, we did not plan on taking close to $1.4 billion out of agriculture support in Canada.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Reform

Chuck Cadman Reform Surrey North, BC

Mr. Speaker, in my constituency police cars having more than $4,000 damage are being parked because there is not enough money to fix them. District commanders do not have enough money to replace worn tires on patrol vehicles. Merchants are losing business because crack dealers are lined up in front of their stores and the RCMP does not have the funds to deal with the issue.

A couple of weeks ago the solicitor general told me he was to be speaking with the attorney general of British Columbia to discuss the funding issue. My constituents would like to know what the outcome of those meetings was.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Fredericton New Brunswick

Liberal

Andy Scott LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I did speak with the attorney general of British Columbia in Regina at the meeting of justice and solicitor general ministers last week. The question of funding for the RCMP in British Columbia was discussed.

I have been assured by the RCMP that while everyone would like to have more money, the reality is nothing is being done in this period of restraint that would compromise Canadian safety.

Health CareOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Health has acknowledged that no professional group has borne the brunt of health care restructuring more than Canada's nurses. Through an era of Liberal cuts nurses have held our system together. They are overworked, stressed, burned out and worried about the quality of patient care.

We need federal action now and it has to be more than the reannouncement of a nursing co-ordinator position in Health Canada.

What is the minister doing to address this current crisis in our health care system and what is he doing to avert a potentially devastating shortage of nurses for the new millennium?

Health CareOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, yesterday I spent time with the president and executive of the Canadian Nurses Association. I assured them, as I have throughout, that they must be an integral part of the health system in the future as it is changed and improved to meet the needs of Canadians.

We have appointed an executive director of nursing policy at Health Canada so that nurses will be a part of planning the future. The nurses know, as does the Canadian public, that making this work, making nurses part of the system, will take more than the empty rhetoric of the NDP. It will take the resolute action of this government.

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Bev Desjarlais NDP Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, the environment minister tells this House that Canada is leading international efforts to reduce climate change.

Reports from Buenos Aires state the opposite. Canada is blocking global efforts to set domestic targets and is negotiating hot air loopholes between the U.S. and Russia.

Can any minister explain to Canadians why this government is trying to sabotage the Kyoto protocol and risk the health of Canadians?

Why is the government forcing our environmental responsibility on to other countries?

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Burlington Ontario

Liberal

Paddy Torsney LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, first of all, the member is not correct.

The government is working with scientists from across the country, with the provinces and with environmentalists to make sure that action we take on climate change will ensure that we do meet our targets set in Kyoto, and that is to become a minus six society. We will make those targets and we will make sure that we use clean development mechanisms and other mechanisms that will help us get there. I hope the member will join us in that work.

Canada PostOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gilles Bernier Progressive Conservative Tobique—Mactaquac, NB

Mr. Speaker, according to HRDC, an employer who falsifies an employment record is guilty of fraud. Yet recently Canada Post altered the records of some of its own term employees to avoid paying overtime.

Overtime hours were saved up and added on to the end of the workers' contracts long after they had left and paid out in regular wages without the employees' consent.

Does the minister condone this practice by Canada Post?

Canada PostOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Oakville Ontario

Liberal

Bonnie Brown LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I cannot speak for the minister for Canada Post but I can speak for the minister of HRDC who would be appalled to hear anything of this sort whether it is from the point of view of the employer or whether it is the investigation of fraud by our own employee.

I will take this information back to him and to the minister for Canada Post to investigate.

Canada PostOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gilles Bernier Progressive Conservative Tobique—Mactaquac, NB

Mr. Speaker, weeks after they had left their jobs at Canada Post, Sandra Ketch and Wendy Jamieson were shocked to learn that they were still post office employees and they were still on the payroll, just because Canada Post did not want to pay them overtime.

I realize that budgets may be tight at the post office, but is it really necessary to break the law in order to save a few bucks?

Will the minister stop this nonsense, launch a full investigation and punish those responsible?

Canada PostOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Mississauga Centre Ontario

Liberal

Carolyn Parrish LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, the budget of Canada Post has been viable since 1988.

It provides quality service and it does it fairly and without cheating. If there are any such activities going on I am sure the minister for Canada Post will take care of it immediately upon his return.

National RevenueOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Carmen Provenzano Liberal Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of National Revenue.

The Department of National Revenue recently held consultations on ways to improve its fairness to Canadians.

Would the parliamentary secretary tell us how the government plans to ensure that the fairness initiative meets the needs of Canadian taxpayers?

National RevenueOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Hamilton Mountain Ontario

Liberal

Beth Phinney LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of National Revenue

Mr. Speaker, fairness is a fundamental and core value of public service. The department is committed to fairness.

Revenue Canada is considered a world leader among its peers. Its fairness practices have been implemented around the world.

I want to assure the House that Revenue Canada has fairness at the very heart of how it is organized, the way it operates and the way it deals with Canadians. We are continuing to ensure these high standards by ongoing consultation and fairness initiatives.

Rural MunicipalitiesOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Reform Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

Mr. Speaker, western rural municipalities have been losing tax revenue because grain elevators and rail lines are being abandoned.

Their tax base is being further eroded by the federal government which refuses to fairly compensate rural municipalities for lost tax revenues when land is converted to Indian reserves.

How are the rural municipalities to survive if the government destroys their tax base without fair compensation? Does this government not understand that any obligations to native people are owed by all Canadians, not just by small groups of western farmers?

Rural MunicipalitiesOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, this government understands very well its obligations to aboriginal Canadians. I only wish that the Reform Party would start helping aboriginal Canadians, communities and everyone else in Canada instead of doing what it is doing now.

As we are speaking there is a bill before the House on land ownership for aboriginal Canadians. What the opposition party has decided to do is put a six month hoist, delaying improvements for six months for Canadians living in rural areas, particularly aboriginal Canadians.

Canadian PassportOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Bloc

Daniel Turp Bloc Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Minister of Foreign Affairs did not really answer my question about the supply of security paper for Canadian passports. I would appreciate a clearer response today.

Why is the Department of Foreign Affairs passport office preventing the Spexel company of Beauharnois from bidding on the contract for this paper and why does it prefer to seek out French or British companies to supply this security paper?

Canadian PassportOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Winnipeg South Centre Manitoba

Liberal

Lloyd Axworthy LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, at this point no decision has been taken on the contract or the bids that would take place with the new passport system.

I find it very refreshing to know that a member of the Bloc Quebecois is interested in maintaining the Canadian passport.

Cape Breton Development CorporationOral Question Period

November 6th, 1998 / 11:55 a.m.

NDP

Peter Mancini NDP Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, hundreds of Cape Breton workers have been laid off by the Cape Breton Development Corporation in the last few weeks, causing great uncertainty in the mining communities I represent.

On Monday of next week I will be holding meetings with the stakeholders in the coal industry in my community and we need to know two things from this government.

Will the government commit to opening the Donkin mine, yes or no? If not, what solutions does it have for DEVCO and the miners of Cape Breton?

Cape Breton Development CorporationOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Humber—St. Barbe—Baie Verte Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Gerry Byrne LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to hear that the hon. member is finally beginning a dialogue with the employees who rely on that facility for employment.

The Government of Canada has already received an invitation from the employees, the union and the employer to initiate a dialogue to get the business to its maximum efficiency.

I remind the hon. member that his own colleague has put forward suggestions that the employees should take it over and privatize. The other members of the union—

Cape Breton Development CorporationOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Cumberland—Colchester.

TransportOral Question Period

11:55 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Transport.

The Government of Canada has now given its blessing to the province of New Brunswick to sell the right to charge tolls on an existing stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway for millions of dollars.

Under this precedent, British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec, all provinces and all Canadians now will be subject to this deal. It means that all provinces can sell the right to charge tolls on existing stretches of the Trans-Canada Highway. It is an incredible precedent to set.

Will the minister explain to all Canadians and all MPs who will be affected why it is good policy to allow—