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House of Commons Hansard #115 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was federal.

Topics

Quebecers' Fête NationaleStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Ghislain Lebel Bloc Chambly, QC

Mr. Speaker,

Our love runs deep, in colours bold And flowers are its language proud In many forms we let them say What often is not said aloud The fleur-de-lys, our flag, flies high Accomplishments are taking shape, And as our special day draws nigh, Ourselves we should congratulate Bonne fête nationale, Quebecers.

.CAPS. Jewish Community

Quebecers' Fête NationaleStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval West, QC

Mr. Speaker, January 17, 2000 marked the fifth year anniversary the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rebbe Menachem M. Schneerson, as head of the Hassidic movement Chadad Lubavitch and of international Judaism.

Fifty years is a jubilee, biblically associated with freedom and redemption; freedom to practise and propagate one's faith and beliefs, freedom from oppression and freedom from self-imposed limitations.

The Rebbe's objective was to promote education, and in particular to inculcate a conscience and a moral ethic based on the authentic and immortal values of the Bible.

The Rebbe inspired a generation of leaders who have impacted the world with over 3,000 educational and outreach institutions globally, of which over 50 institutions are in Canada.

The Lubavitch community has proclaimed the week of July 1 to 7, 2000 to mark the sixth anniversary of the passing of the Lubavitch Rebbe, Lubavitch Week in Canada.

Colin White And Jon SimStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Progressive Conservative Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, the NHL's New Jersey Devils captured hockey's Holy Grail Saturday, beating Dallas 2 to 1 in overtime in game six of the Stanley Cup finals. This year's final showcased passion and excitement for every player who stepped on the ice, and two players in particular epitomized the very best of that spirit.

Colin White and Jon Sim of New Glasglow, Nova Scotia played big parts in their team's performance. Colin, a towering defenceman, and Jon, a fearless banging winger, took regular shifts and were solid performers in the playoffs.

As teammates in the Pictou County minor hockey system, particularly with Scott Weeks Triple A Midgets, both Sim and White acquired the skills and determination that made them outstanding hockey players and poised young men. Add to that maturity and class, and they are local and national fan favourites. Both players won the recognition and praise of many, including Don Cherry and Ron Maclean, for their play.

With the New Jersey win, Colin's name will be engraved on the cup, joining Jon's as a result of New Jersey's victory. Adding to Colin's joy, he is getting married this summer. All expect a fabulous homecoming for both native sons.

Trevor SnyderStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Rick Limoges Liberal Windsor—St. Clair, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize Trevor Snyder, a student athlete at St. Joseph's Secondary School in Windsor.

Trevor recently celebrated his 18th birthday by winning a gold medal at the OFSAA track and field championships. His winning javelin throw of 71.22 metres broke a 34 year old record of 70.12 metres.

I commend Trevor and all of the other local gold medal winners at the track and field championships for their performances as student athletes.

Gun RegistryStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Reform

Gerry Ritz Reform Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, the justice minister's political assets have been saved again. The supreme court upheld her flawed gun registry.

The minister claims her registry has stopped hundreds of undesirable characters from obtaining firearms permits.

One of those undesirables was from my riding. He was repeatedly rejected because his name appeared on too many files where firearms were involved. The computer did not realize this applicant was an RCMP corporal and the firearms verifier for his detachment, hence his name on the firearms files. I know that I will sleep better knowing the system will not licence an RCMP officer's sporting rifle.

The minister's outrageously expensive outreach program is another sham. A quick check of her Internet site found shopowners and individuals who received cartons of registry files in the mail from the minister with no explanation as to what was expected. That is a lot like the heritage minister's flag fiasco.

The registry budget has skyrocketed and public support has plummeted. The Canadian public is aware that this whole exercise is more about saving political face than public safety. The majority of Canadians say “Just scrap it”.

.CAPS. Le Baluchon Alternative School

Gun RegistryStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral Bloc Laval Centre, QC

Mr. Speaker, in France on May 19, at the Carambolimages film festival, the Basket d'Or trophy was won by a film called “Une mystérieuse odeur de pin”.

It was produced by an alternative school in Laval, Le Baluchon, and was judged by an international jury made up of 10,000 children. It won over the next submission by 900 votes.

This adventure, wholly conceived and produced by primary school pupils, is a wonderful illustration of children's extraordinary capacity to combine fun, creativity and performance.

I am pleased to extend the congratulations of the Bloc Quebecois to the young creators of “Une mystérieuse odeur de pin”. I also wish to congratulate their teacher, Christian Desjardins, for his excellent guidance and the parents, François Tardif in particular, for their invaluable support. With their belief in the genius of childhood, they have contributed to the creation of a magical project.

To all the Baluchon school team, bravo! We are proud of you all.

Atlantic Canada Opportunities AgencyStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Michelle Dockrill NDP Bras D'Or, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the performance of the the Minister responsible for ACOA around Scotia Rainbow was an embarrassment to not only Canadians but to his own caucus colleagues. He referred to a petition signed by what is left of the Liberal Party in Cape Breton, clearly showing that where Scotia Rainbow is concerned the government has everything to hide.

Let us review Mr. Lafrenière's track record: two companies bankrupt, one company in receivership, rubber cheques to employees and others, and environmental disasters in Quebec and Nova Scotia. The ACOA minister has overlooked this and instead considered his Liberal connections: a picture with the Prime Minister, an $8,000 donation to the Liberal Party, and using company time and staff to assemble lawn signs for Liberal campaigns. Mr. Lafrenière may be a good Liberal but it appears he is not a good businessman.

The government should ask for a refund for its dance lessons because, try as it might, it can no longer do the two step around Scotia Rainbow.

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Edmonton North Alberta

Reform

Deborah Grey ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I got the sense yesterday that a certain veterans affairs minister was just a little too excited about answering HRDC questions. He must have already heard about the cabinet shuffle.

Liberal sources say, though, that the government is finally admitting defeat and demoting the HRDC minister and dismantling, or at least masking, the boondoggle of the jobs fund. They also said, though, that the government is looking for new ways to spend money on job creation in Quebec.

Are there still any unemployed friends of the Prime Minister in Shawinigan?

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the minister of human resources has done a great job, but the sanctimonious opposition is always complaining.

I see that in the riding of Bonaventure—Gaspé—Îles-de-la-Madeleine—Pabok it has sold 2,800 memberships, and everybody says that is as phony as a $3 bill. The Leader of the Opposition is a responsible person in the House of Commons. When there is such a flagrant abuse of democratic rights, I hope she will have an inquiry about it and she will call in the RCMP.

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Edmonton North Alberta

Reform

Deborah Grey ReformLeader of the Opposition

I think that is a great idea, Mr. Speaker. Canadians would like to say thanks a billion. Let me refer to what is a famous quote by now:

—when we form government, every Minister in the Cabinet that I will be presiding over will have to take full responsibility...If there is any bungling in the department, nobody will be singled out. The Minister will have to take the responsibility.

That was this Prime Minister in 1991 when he was sitting right here. Is that why he is finally getting around to demoting the HRDC minister?

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, it is because of what I said in those days and because I kept my word that I moved from there to here.

It is because the member has a reputation of throwing dirt in the House of Commons about anything, without any consideration for the reputation of anybody, that she will move out of that seat very soon.

We will keep defending the programs that have been put in place by the government to help the poor, the people who need help in our society.

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Edmonton North Alberta

Reform

Deborah Grey ReformLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, let me assure the Prime Minister that I will be keeping it warm for him. I promise.

The Prime Minister is planning on dismantling HRDC in a desperate attempt to hide the mess created by the entire government and the HRDC minister, but it is too little too late. The government's bungling and boondoggling have caused taxpayers billions of dollars so far. How in the world would a cabinet shuffle ever change that?

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, they have only one problem. They take this one little problem and when their leadership was asked to look into what is obviously a fraud they said they would do nothing.

They have one problem and they cannot handle it. We have thousands of problems, and we are solving them on this side of the House.

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Reform

Diane Ablonczy Reform Calgary Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, today there is a new HRDC fiasco. A Sault Ste. Marie firm that got nearly $1 million from HRDC over the last year has now closed its doors.

HRDC says it does not know where the public's $1 million went, or even whether the company met the terms of the grant. Once again the minister has been caught asleep at the switch. The boondoggle just never ends.

This session began with the human resources minister running away from questions about her competence. Why is it ending the same way?

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Brant Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart LiberalMinister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, I am very happy to review the facts of the last six months. I want to remind the House that it was this government that brought the results of the internal audit forward, not because anybody told us we had to but because we believe in openness and transparency.

I want to remind the House that the Department of Human Resources Development Canada has committed to the Canadian public that it will fix this problem. If the opposition would just take the time to see all the changes that have occurred, it would see that we are true to our word. Finally—

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The hon. member for Calgary—Nose Hill.

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Reform

Diane Ablonczy Reform Calgary Nose Hill, AB

Mr. Speaker, for 20 straight weeks evidence has mounted of HRDC incompetence in handling literally billions of public money.

The minister's attempts to convince Canadians that there is nothing to worry about have failed to square with the facts. The government may makes some cosmetic changes to try to paper over the ugly mess at HRDC.

It will just get rid of the jobs fund pork barrel, dismantle the department and shuffle the minister off to fresh pastures, but why does it fail to deal with the root problem, which is lack of respect for taxpayers and their money?

Human Resources DevelopmentOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Brant Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart LiberalMinister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, on the contrary. It is out of absolute respect for the Canadian public that we chose to tell them that we had a problem within the department. It is out of respect for the Canadian public that we stand firm behind their values, that Canadians will support each other in times of trouble.

The member speaks about cosmetics. I just wonder how big the cosmetic bag will have to be when they try to explain to the Canadian public their membership boondoggle.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

June 15th, 2000 / 2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, one of the arguments used by the Prime Minister to refuse to negotiate parental leave with Quebec is that the federal program will come into effect on January 1, 2001, and that Quebec families would lose one year.

But that argument does not make sense. No one is opposed to the coming into effect of the federal program—

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

But there is more. Let us see if they are going to applaud.

The provincial program will come into effect on January 1, 2002. This means there a year and a half left to negotiate.

Will the Prime Minister do the right thing, will he think about the future and negotiate?

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, there is nothing to negotiate. We have a program that will be implemented and that will benefit Quebecers who want to avail themselves of that option. Instead of a 6 month period, they will receive money from the federal government during 12 months.

The provincial government can complement the federal program if it so wishes. That happened in the past with family allowances. There were family allowances from the federal government and the Quebec government of the day added provincial family allowances. It can do exactly the same thing with parental leave.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister obviously does not understand the whole situation, the modern reality of young families. Even The Montreal Gazette agrees with the Quebec government, something which rarely happens.

I am asking the Prime Minister to not look at the past, to not remain frozen in the past. Let historians deal with the past. Will the Prime Minister think about the future, about young families and sit down to negotiate in good faith, as he must, under his own legislation? Will he think about young families, not his own personal interests and those of his party? That is all we ask of him.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, a few years ago, we undertook negotiations on this issue with the Quebec government. Its officials left the negotiating table, so we acted accordingly.

The federal program is in effect. The money is collected by the federal government across the country and is distributed in the same fashion in all the provinces.

If the Quebec government wants to add on to our program, fine. Nothing prevents it from doing so. Families will then receive money from the federal government and whatever amount the provincial government is prepared to give them.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Christiane Gagnon Bloc Québec, QC

Mr. Speaker, the federal government's parental support program is far less advantageous that that proposed by the Government of Quebec. Ottawa's comes from the employment insurance program, and is therefore funded by the contributions of employers and employees.

Why is the Prime Minister, stubborn as he is, acting as if this were his own money, when it is the money of young families?