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House of Commons Hansard #171 of the 36th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was band.

Topics

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Matthews Progressive Conservative Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, this year Canadian employees and employers will pay approximately $80 billion in EI premiums and unemployed Canadians will receive approximately $12 billion back in benefits. This leaves government with approximately $6 billion in EI premiums for the finance minister's slush fund. Employees and employers need protection for their EI fund.

Will the Minister of HRDC take immediate action to protect for employers and employees the unemployment fund for the benefit of unemployed Canadians?

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, as I have had the opportunity of mentioning a number of times in the House, the priority of the government is to help Canadians get into the labour market. The employment insurance system has been transformed to be more helpful for Canadians to get into the labour market.

Employment insurance is one of the programs that gives temporary incomes to individuals who have lost their jobs. We also have a number of other programs which we should take into consideration: the youth employment strategy and the Canada jobs fund that creates jobs in areas where unemployment is too high.

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Matthews Progressive Conservative Burin—St. George's, NL

Mr. Speaker, this year Newfoundlanders and Labradorians will pay $32 million more into the EI fund than unemployed Newfoundlanders will receive back in benefits: $107 million paid in premiums and $75 million back in benefits.

Unemployed workers in rural communities in Newfoundland are being devastated by low EI benefits and the Newfoundland economy is suffering.

In light of the growing surplus in the EI fund, let me ask the minister if he will take immediate action to assist unemployed Canadians and to improve EI client services and benefits to unemployed Canadians.

Employment InsuranceOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the population of Newfoundland and Labrador is very pleased with the Canada jobs fund which is money that is taken out of the treasury year after year. It is now a permanent fund of over $100 million a year to create employment opportunities where unemployment is still too high.

We also have the youth employment strategy to help young people to enter the labour market by giving them that first job experience with an internship. That is what Canadians expect, not only passive support.

RailwaysOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Janko Peric Liberal Cambridge, ON

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

The railways tell me that the law required them to blow a train whistle each time they approach a crossing. My constituents tell me they do not appreciate that annoying noise at 3 a.m.

What can be done to reduce loud and annoying train whistles without jeopardizing public safety?

RailwaysOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Don Valley East Ontario

Liberal

David Collenette LiberalMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I know the hon. member feels very strongly about the issue. His concern is one that many of us have in our own ridings. However safety is paramount and there are exceptions made to the operating rules as they currently exist.

I am pleased that Bill C-58, which hopefully will get third reading this afternoon in the House, will make it easier for railways to allow whistles not to be blown pending resolutions of various local councils. Councils by resolution could request this and the law will permit the railways to deal with the annoying matter the hon. member is concerned with.

Child PornographyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Independent

John Nunziata Independent York South—Weston, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister. Canadians across the country are outraged by the B.C. child pornography decision. The Prime Minister knows that his government has the power today to rectify this miscarriage of justice by using the notwithstanding clause.

As minister of justice he was responsible for the notwithstanding clause. Will the Prime Minister do the right thing to protect Canadian children from pedophiles and perverts by using the notwithstanding clause immediately?

Child PornographyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, I have already indicated twice this afternoon that the government has taken immediate action. We have taken the extraordinary step of intervening at the B.C. Court of Appeal to support the B.C. attorney general in defence of this law. We believe the law is constitutional.

Child PornographyOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Independent

John Nunziata Independent York South—Weston, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Justice has not explained why her government refuses to use the notwithstanding clause.

Why is she simply relying on the courts to do the right thing when she and her government have the power to correct this unconscionable decision? Why does her government not use the notwithstanding clause today?

Child PornographyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member and others know, in our system of justice there are appeal provisions.

The appropriate course of action is to appeal the decision and listen to what the higher courts have to say. After receiving the decisions of higher courts some amendments to the law may be required. To pre-empt that appellant process is silly and wrong headed.

Atlantic Canada Opportunities AgencyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Reform

Lee Morrison Reform Cypress Hills—Grasslands, SK

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

In 1994 the government made a deal with Shearwater Development Corporation, a Nova Scotia company owned by a prominent Liberal, Charles Keating, to develop a private industry at the Shearwater naval base. The company is now pulling out and stiffing a creditor for $500,000.

How many millions of dollars did ACOA contribute to this boondoggle and where did the money go? Will the minister immediately launch an investigation into this sweetheart deal?

Atlantic Canada Opportunities AgencyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Fred Mifflin LiberalMinister of Veterans Affairs and Secretary of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency)

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has his facts half right and half wrong.

What ACOA did was to ameliorate in Atlantic Canada areas in which the defence department reduced its infrastructure in Shearwater as well as in Cornwallis and other areas. ACOA took great interest in developing the management agency as it did in Argentia and in other parts of Atlantic Canada.

We worked with the management association, the management organization which is still in place and is still doing a good job in trying to ameliorate change in—

Atlantic Canada Opportunities AgencyOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. member for Mercier.

Copyright BoardOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, there is concern among authors.

According to section 16 of the Official Languages Act, the five members of the Copyright Board must be bilingual. Yet the Minister of Industry has already appointed two unilingual anglophones to this board and is apparently preparing to make one of these two head of the board.

Can the Prime Minister assure us that his Minister of Industry is going to respect the Official Languages Act by appointing a bilingual person with recognized ability to this position?

Copyright BoardOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, we are in the process of examining appointments to the board, and as soon as we are prepared to name the other candidates, the hon. member can be assured that we will comply with all legislation.

DevcoOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Peter Mancini NDP Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, earlier today the finance minister boasted about the legacy of the Liberal Party. My question is for the Prime Minister who may remember the legacy of Lester Pearson.

After broken promises of full consultation the government through the Minister of Natural Resources betrayed the people of Cape Breton, betrayed its own legacy. Shame on them. Only a third of the miners who have spent 25 years underground may qualify for a pension.

Will the Prime Minister honour this legacy by guaranteeing a full pension for the majority of the workforce of those people at Devco?

DevcoOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I invite the hon. gentleman to look at the terms of the human resources package with great care, particularly after the corporation has had the opportunity to discuss some of the details with the unions. The unions may have some suggestions to make for modifications.

He will find that the average severance payment in this case will be in the neighbourhood of $70,000 per person plus training allowances on top of that. In comparison to other situations in Atlantic Canada this package compares very favourably.

Economic DevelopmentOral Question Period

February 1st, 1999 / 2:55 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Gerald Keddy Progressive Conservative South Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Natural Resources.

The minister's department has stated that one-third of the $200 million earmarked for Devco will be spent on an economic development package for Cape Breton. That works out to $68 million for economic development. This is just not enough.

What guarantee can the minister give that the $68 million earmarked will not go to companies with Liberal Party connections?

Economic DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board

Mr. Speaker, I have indicated repeatedly long before today that any economic development package would need to be developed in very close collaboration with the local community, including Mayor Muise and others in the Cape Breton community who have vital input to make into the entire package. This one needs to be built from the ground up and shaped by Cape Bretoners.

In addition to the $68 million referred to in the question, there is $80 million to be invested by ACOA and Enterprise Cape Breton over the next three to four years.

ColumbiaOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Liberal

Sarkis Assadourian Liberal Brampton Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister for International Co-operation.

Following the tragic earthquake that has devastated the city of Armenia in Columbia leaving tens of thousands in need of assistance, can the minister tell the House what the government is doing to help the victims of this earthquake in Columbia?

ColumbiaOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Sudbury Ontario

Liberal

Diane Marleau LiberalMinister for International Cooperation and Minister responsible for Francophonie

Mr. Speaker, Canada is providing $750,000 in humanitarian assistance. Canada, by the way, was the first country to respond as part of this through the Canada fund.

We will also examine our regular program to see how we can help in the long term reconstruction.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Diane St-Jacques Progressive Conservative Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, I believe you will find unanimous consent for the following important motion, seconded by the hon. member for Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough.

I move:

That, in the opinion of this House, section 163.1(4) of the Criminal Code continues as a positive instrument protecting the rights of children to be free from all forms of sexual abuse and exploitation.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

I take it the hon. member is asking for unanimous consent to put the motion. We have a motion to proceed without debate, as I understand, waive notice of motion.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Reform

Randy White Reform Langley—Abbotsford, BC

Mr. Speaker, while we agree with this statement, before I give unanimous consent, the House cannot allow more lawyers and judges to decide on our behalf. Tomorrow we will force debate and a vote on this issue. Could we not further debate this today seeing that—

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

We are getting into debate. The motion is very simple, to waive debate today and go directly to the motion.

Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?