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House of Commons Hansard #3 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was children.

Topics

Community Care Worker WeekStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to remind the House and all Canadians that the week of October 11 to 17 is Community Care Worker Week.

The professionals, paraprofessionals and volunteers who provide health care in the community are an integral part of our health care system. They are the front line workers providing home care, long term institutional care, meal distribution services and community support programs.

To acknowledge the invaluable contribution workers make to the health of Canadians, the Canadian Association for Community Care together with Lifeline Systems Canada has initiated the Community Care Worker Award which is presented every year during Community Care Worker Week.

I invite you to join me in thanking community care workers throughout Canada for their contribution to the health of Canadians.

World Day For The Refusal Of MiseryStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, October 17 has been proclaimed World Day for the refusal of misery by the United Nations. The theme of that day, which is dedicated to the victims of poverty, is “Children want a world that is fair to everyone. With them, let us refuse misery”.

This day will stress the exclusion and isolation experienced on a daily basis by an increasing number of women, men and children, while also urging us to take a hard look at our way of doing things, so as to eliminate this wall of shame for our society.

Beyond any statistical consideration, poverty means being excluded from any form of full participation as a citizen; it means that one cannot participate in the benefits of economic growth and it also suppresses the fundamental right to work. Poverty means the outright withdrawal of freedom of speech for those who are affected by it.

Tackling poverty is an enormous challenge. We must do so with determination, with our heads high, and we must not be afraid of telling things as they are, while being receptive to those who live in poverty.

Liberal GovernmentStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, as we begin this new session, let us take a look at the parties in the House of Commons.

The Reformers are squabbling among themselves; the Conservatives are trying to find themselves; the New Democrats are slowly disintegrating. As for the Bloquistes, they have yet to find a reason to exist except, perhaps, their pensions, unlike the Liberal government, which knows exactly where it is headed.

The Liberals are governing according to the priorities of Canadians, so as to provide them with a better economic, social and political future.

Congratulations to the Liberal government.

FisheriesStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Charlie Power Progressive Conservative St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, since the supreme court ruling on the hunting and fishing rights of native Canadians, a crisis has grown in the lobster fishery on the east coast.

This is just the first manifestation of a serious problem that lies ahead for all regions of Canada from Newfoundland and Labrador to British Columbia. If a reasonable, fair and lasting agreement between native and non-native fishers cannot be achieved, further conflicts are a certainty and the potential for more violence remains very high.

Parliament must act immediately to demonstrate the leadership that the federal government has failed to provide. I urgently request the agreement of all parties to facilitate the immediate reinstatement of the Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans. The committee should immediately go first to New Brunswick and Nova Scotia where tensions are tearing traditionally peaceful communities apart along racial lines. Let us hear directly from those involved, accept the responsibility entrusted to us and seek to establish a constructive environment for agreement. We all want a peaceful solution.

The PC Party of Canada is prepared to take this action. I call on all my caucus colleagues and all members of the House to join us in—

FisheriesStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Saanich—Gulf Islands.

William Head InstitutionStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Reform

Gary Lunn Reform Saanich—Gulf Islands, BC

Mr. Speaker, convicted wife killer, Patrick Lees, has just begun his sentence at William Head prison in Victoria. Inmates refer to William Head as Club Fed. Why? The inmates reside in condominiums, no steel bars, no locks on the doors, many of the bedrooms have TVs and VCRs and each condo has its own living room, dining room and kitchen. Let us not forget its waterfront location equipped with golf course, fishing pier and much more.

Spousal abuse is a huge problem in our society. Patrick Lees violently murdered his wife, left two young children without a mom and now we see this wife killer sent to Club Fed. There is a place in the system for institutions where inmates must learn to care for themselves. However, prisoners must earn the right to transfer to these institutions.

I am working on a private member's bill where an inmate would not be eligible for this type of institution until they have completed at least 50% of their time. I urge all members to work with me to change the system.

Presence In GalleryStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

The Speaker

Colleagues, I am going to change things just a little bit for today. I want to draw to your attention the presence in the gallery of Her Excellency Libuse Benesova, President of the Senate of the Czech Republic, and her parliamentary delegation.

Presence In GalleryStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

FisheriesOral Question Period

October 14th, 1999 / 2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the government's ad hoc plan for restoring peace to the east coast fishery came apart yesterday, just hours after the fisheries minister assured us everything was under control. Thus far the minister's strategy has done nothing but increase tensions in the east coast fishery and the potential for violence.

Thirty years ago when the Prime Minister was minister of Indian affairs he professed to believe that assigning rights to different people based on their race would only lead to further discrimination, recrimination and the kinds of violence that we see now in New Brunswick.

Why has the prime minister and his government abandoned that position?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I said in the House of Commons that treaties were signed by the government of the day, by Her Majesty the Queen of England at that time.

We have an obligation to respect the treaty that was entered into by previous governments, particularly with the natives. These agreements were signed. The supreme court passed a judgment and we have to respect that within the confines of the judgment that gave collective rights. We have the right to impose measures to maintain the conservation that is needed so that stocks can be there for years to come.

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, no one is saying that the aboriginal people do not have rights but the non-aboriginal people also have rights. They have rights granted by the government under its constitutional power to manage the fishery. What the supreme court should have been doing in the Marshall case is balancing these rights not just affirming one side.

Why does the Prime Minister not take control of this situation, ask the supreme court to stay its decision and return to a fisheries policy that is based on equality under the law and conservation not race?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the treaties were signed with the natives of the day. It is an obligation of the government and of the nation to respect the obligation that we have taken with them.

There was a judgment by the supreme court that said that it is a collective right that has to be managed within the need for conservation. This is exactly what the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans is working on at this moment.

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Reform

Preston Manning ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister is not listening to what is being said.

No one is denying the fact of aboriginal rights. However, the government, under its constitutional authority for the fishery, has also granted rights to others to fish. That is what a fishing licence is. What we are looking for is some leadership from the government in balancing these rights.

I ask the Prime Minister again, why does he not ask the supreme court for a stay of this judgment and why does he not come up with a fishery policy that recognizes equality under the law not special entitlement simply based on race?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, these rights have been confirmed by the court. The Leader of the Opposition takes pleasure in saying that he respects the rights but does not want the judgment implemented. That is like having your cake and eating it at the same time.

Some licences have been granted for a long time, but this judgment adds new fishermen to the business. This has to be worked out in conjunction with those who were there before and those who have new authority from the supreme court to use their fishing rights. We have to get the two parties together.

To have your cake and eat it all the time like the leader—

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Delta—South Richmond.

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Reform

John Cummins Reform Delta—South Richmond, BC

Mr. Speaker, the purpose of asking for a stay of judgment is to ask the court to clarify its decision.

The month long window to petition the court to stay this decision and clarify it is up in three days. So far the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and the Prime Minister have opted to allow chaos and violence to determine the course of events.

Is the Prime Minister now so comfortable with a race based fisheries policy that he will not even ask the supreme court to clarify its decision?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, every time there is a conclusion by the courts that the natives of Canada were here before, they always refer to it as a racist situation. They were here before we were. The king of the day told the settlers who were coming to Canada to make treaties with them. It is our obligation to respect the words of Her Majesty the Queen of those days.

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Reform

John Cummins Reform Delta—South Richmond, BC

Mr. Speaker, let me give the Prime Minister examples.

It is unclear what the supreme court means by a modest living or whether non-status natives will enjoy this preferential right to fish that is allowed by the Marshall decision.

Flawed as it is, this decision needs clarification to establish the place of non-aboriginal fishermen in this fishery, fishermen whose families have been fishing these waters for 200 and 300 years.

Why is the government refusing to return court for clarification of this irresponsible and unrealistic decision?

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the judgment has been rendered. We have to live with the judgment. We are obliged to respect judgments. We can ask for a stay to gain some time to plan a proper regime. However, whenever some rights are recognized for the first people of the land, the Reform Party always attacks them as racist. It is absolutely not Canadian.

Gm Plant In BoisbriandOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Minister of Industry called Quebec Minister Landry irresponsible for putting forward a plan to save the only automobile plant in Quebec, the GM plant in Boisbriand and, with it, thousands of jobs in the region, when there are 14 such plants in Ontario.

How can the minister make such statements? And when he does, is he not behaving more like Ontario's Minister of Industry than the federal Minister of Industry?

Gm Plant In BoisbriandOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, it is interesting that the Bloc Quebecois is so in favour of an offer for a company such as this, which has made phenomenal profits.

In Montreal, La Presse asked the question of the day, that is: “Quebec is prepared to put up $360 million to save GM in Boisbriand. Do you think it should?” And 19% said yes, while 81% said no.

Gm Plant In BoisbriandOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, that is not much of an answer. It does show, however, that the Liberals are well organized when it comes to contacting La Presse .

This morning, I spoke to Luc Desnoyers, Quebec's delegate to the CAW. I also spoke with the president of the union at the GM plant in Boisbriand. Both said that the minister was dragging his feet, that he had done nothing for the cause, and that he was doing nothing to defend Quebec's workers.

I ask the Prime Minister, who talks to us about collaboration, partnership and understanding, how he can stand by and watch his minister do absolutely nothing to help save the Boisbriand plant. It is a disgrace.

Gm Plant In BoisbriandOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, it is not true that we are not doing anything.

In fact, it was the Government of Canada that first sat down with the Boisbriand workers. We were the ones who funded the project to put together a presentation for GM officials. We were the ones who carried the case forward with the GM officials in Detroit. I personally arranged a meeting with the president of GM in the United States, in Detroit, and invited Premier Bouchard to attend, just as Mr. Harris had gone to Seattle a few months ago to talk with Boeing.

Mr. Bouchard sent Mr. Landry. Together, we discussed the future of the Boisbriand project with GMr.

Gm Plant In BoisbriandOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval, QC

Mr. Speaker, we learned from this morning's La Presse that the automotive manufacturers are being offered some extremely attractive incentives to stay in the U.S. or to develop new plants there.

We learned also that Bernard Landry has made an interesting proposal as part of the efforts being made on the North American continent to save the Montreal plant.

Does the Minister of Industry seriously think he is going to be believed when he says he has done everything to save GM, when he has in fact stood back with his arms crossed, to all intents and purposes, for some time?

Gm Plant In BoisbriandOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, does the hon. member seriously think that offering a lot of money before any demands are even made is a good negotiating approach?