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House of Commons Hansard #111 of the 36th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was war.

Topics

HealthOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Reform

Charlie Penson Reform Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, I notice that the health minister sits in his chair and does not answer while he lets the number cruncher over there do it for him.

The provinces want to meet with the federal government next week to discuss this issue and this report. We have learned that the federal government has reserved rooms in Vancouver for June 15 and 16 just in case it changes its mind.

Will the minister commit today to attend this meeting, or will he dodge it like he does his responsibility to health care?

HealthOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Etobicoke Centre Ontario

Liberal

Allan Rock LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, let me first of all say that we welcome the report which is to be delivered today from the provinces and territories. I have not yet seen it but I hope very much that it is a constructive contribution to a dialogue we are having with the provinces on health care and its funding into the future.

As Minister of Health I believe strongly that there should and must be more federal money in health care. All we ask is that it go to support the public health care system, not to fund tax cuts in Ontario. We ask that it go to make the changes that are needed to make it a truly sustainable health care system. I look forward to talking about those plans with my counterparts in the provinces.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski—Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, this week the Prime Minister has proven two things to us as far as parental insurance is concerned. First, that his objective is not to respond to the present needs of young families but rather to raise the profile of his government. Second, that he is woefully ignorant of developments in Quebec's parental insurance project when he states that the federal government is in the lead role in this matter.

Is the Prime Minister aware that the parental insurance project was announced by the Government of Quebec as far back as February 1996 as the third component of its family policy?

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, it is obvious that the federal government is the leader as far as parental leave is concerned, and has been for some time. It is fully entitled to broaden this system in the interest of all Canadians. If the hon. member is serious about this, I wonder why she does not support our efforts for the entire population.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski—Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government is clearly determined not to understand something that is, after all, simple. The decision by Quebec dates back to February 1996 and led to a consensus at the November 1996 economic summit.

Right from the start, right from February 1997, Quebec has attempted to negotiate the mechanisms of this program with Ottawa. Despite Quebec's offer on several occasions to resume negotiations, nothing has yet come of it.

What is holding back the government from merely showing a bit of open-mindedness, from sitting down at the table and negotiating in this matter?

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, it is obvious that the hon. member does not possess the facts.

In 1997, the PQ government chose to walk away from the negotiating table with the federal government, which is one more reason why we decided to move ahead in the interest of all Canadians.

If the separatist PQ government wants to do anything more, it is perfectly entitled to do so.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:20 a.m.

Bloc

Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral Bloc Laval Centre, QC

Mr. Speaker, parental insurance is a cohesive element of the family policy that has been developed in Quebec over the past 20 years. The Quebec society deems it essential to support all young families. In spite of the Quebec government's offer, reiterated today by minister Marois to the Minister of Human Resources Development, the government persists in its refusal.

What will it take for the Prime Minister to adopt an attitude that will allow us to meet the current needs of all young families?

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, this is the reason why, in the throne speech and in the budget speech, we announced our intention to broaden the scope of parental leave.

We want to work in the best interests of poor families and of all families in Quebec and across the country. Again, I wonder why the Bloc Quebecois is not interested in supporting our serious efforts to help all Canadian families.

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Bloc

Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral Bloc Laval Centre, QC

Mr. Speaker, the issue of parental insurance has been the subject of discussions in Quebec since February 1996. Having received support at the November 1996 economic summit, Quebec has been trying to negotiate such a program with Ottawa since 1997.

Instead of giving a positive reply to that request to negotiate, the federal government, in its September 1999 throne speech and its February 2000 budget, did not hesitate to propose a measure that willfully excludes thousands of young families from its program.

How can the government justify its decision to block a process that has the support of all Quebecers and to merely propose an incomplete, unfair and unsatisfactory measure?

Parental LeaveOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we did not block any program. If something is unfair, it is the hon. member's question; it is unfair and it is not based on facts, because we work for all families, including young families and poor families.

Gasoline PricesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

NDP

John Solomon NDP Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Mr. Speaker, rising energy costs are responsible for half the hike in inflation. Consumers are being gouged twice, once for their gasoline and once for everything else, thanks to inflation.

The average price of gas in Canada is at a new record of 75.3 cents a litre. According to StatsCan, people now spend more on energy costs and their cars and transportation than they do on food, clothing and shoes combined.

In view of this threat to inflation, will the government consider giving consumers in Canada a gas tax holiday this summer? If not, what exactly is its action plan to help consumers cope with high gas prices?

Gasoline PricesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, why has the hon. member not brought this message and request to the attention of his provincial government? It is clear that the provincial governments have the authority to regulate gasoline prices at the retail level in times like these. Why is he remaining silent and not going after his own provincial government?

Gasoline PricesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

NDP

John Solomon NDP Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Mr. Speaker, Canadians do not buy excuses from the oil companies and they are sick and tired of Liberals passing the buck.

There has to be a time when government stands up and protects consumers from price gouging. The government has been given numerous suggestions. Today I give it another one. How about a federal energy price commission to regulate gas prices at the wholesale level?

Will the government support the establishment of an energy price commission at the federal level and if not, just what action will it take to protect consumers from gouging at the pumps?

Gasoline PricesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Willowdale Ontario

Liberal

Jim Peterson LiberalSecretary of State (International Financial Institutions)

Mr. Speaker, the provinces now have the power to regulate the price of gasoline. That is within provincial jurisdiction. We believe that is where the legislative competence lies.

FisheriesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Mark Muise Progressive Conservative West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. Is he concerned that boats he has provided to the aboriginal communities as part of his solution to the Marshall decision could be used to expand the controversial food fishery? What steps has he taken to ensure that this does not happen?

FisheriesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Victoria B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson LiberalMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the issue of the purchase of boats and turning boats over to people who are new entrants in the fishery obviously has some aspects which are of concern. We are watching the problem closely. We want to make sure that the boats that will be used will be used for licensed activity, not illegal activity. I can assure the hon. gentleman that this issue is a matter which has the close attention of the department.

FisheriesOral Question Period

11:25 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Mark Muise Progressive Conservative West Nova, NS

Mr. Speaker, it has been said that the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans is prepared to offer Burnt Church licences for other fish species if they would sign an agreement with the government.

Can the minister confirm whether this is true? Would such an agreement be in line with agreements signed with other bands? If not, does the minister not have an obligation to treat all bands equally?

FisheriesOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Victoria B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson LiberalMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, obviously the government wants to treat all bands equally. That is why we are trying to get agreements with all bands.

I am happy to report to the House that as of May 30, 18 agreements have been signed with first nations. The government has five more agreements in principle with other first nations and we hope that there will be signatures soon. I believe there has been good progress in the negotiations. I am certainly hopeful that there will be agreement overall in due course.

Airline IndustryOral Question Period

June 9th, 2000 / 11:30 a.m.

Reform

Val Meredith Reform South Surrey—White Rock—Langley, BC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the government was extremely indignant when the official opposition raised concerns about a potential strike at Air Canada. The parliamentary secretary stated that my concern was premature because in her words, “there will be a negotiated settlement.”

If the government is so confident that there will be a negotiated settlement, why at the very moment when it was criticizing the opposition for raising this issue the government was in fact drafting legislation to block a strike?

Airline IndustryOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the premise of the hon. member's question is wrong. She should not be raising suggestions which could inhibit the parties in reaching an early settlement through collective bargaining. Why does she not act constructively in this matter for a change?

Airline IndustryOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Reform

Val Meredith Reform South Surrey—White Rock—Langley, BC

Mr. Speaker, this is just another example of the government's duplicity. The Liberals say one thing for public consumption and do the exact opposite behind closed doors.

Government ministers can utilize the fleet of Challenger jets for their air travel but the average Canadian cannot. The public deserves to have an answer. Will the government permit a labour dispute at Air Canada to disrupt the travel plans of Canadians this summer?

Airline IndustryOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Windsor West Ontario

Liberal

Herb Gray LiberalDeputy Prime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member should withdraw her unjustified complaint of duplicity. It is unparliamentary. It is unworthy of her. If she is serious as a parliamentarian and if she has any sense of parliamentary ethics at all, she had better get up and withdraw that, otherwise she will stand condemned of being the very type of person she wrongfully alleges that government ministers are.

The government wants to see a negotiated settlement. We look forward to a negotiated settlement and continued operations of the airline system for all Canadians.

I do not know why the hon. member is trying to slander other members of parliament. It does not help us in these efforts.

Canada DayOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre De Savoye Bloc Portneuf, QC

Mr. Speaker, I too would like to put a simple question to the government, and I hope the Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Canadian Heritage will understand me correctly.

How much money is the federal government planning to spend outside Quebec on Canada Day celebrations?

Canada DayOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Ottawa—Vanier Ontario

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Canadian Heritage

Mr. Speaker, we no longer need a calendar to know when Canada Day is. Since the Bloc Quebecois has been in the House, every year it is the same old story, questioning the fact that Canadians in every province of this country want to celebrate their belonging to this country.

This is what we do, and we will keep on doing it with pride.

Canada DayOral Question Period

11:30 a.m.

Bloc

Pierre De Savoye Bloc Portneuf, QC

Mr. Speaker, I believe it is important for the public to know why the government is keeping from us a piece of information which seems to me rather innocuous. Is it a state secret or does it threaten national defence?

Could it be that the minister asked her colleague responsible for the CIO to find new funds for her after giving all of her $5 million to Quebec? Or is it in fact because Canada Day is only celebrated in Quebec?