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House of Commons Hansard #36 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was children.

Topics

MulticulturalismOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Vancouver Centre B.C.

Liberal

Hedy Fry LiberalSecretary of State (Multiculturalism)(Status of Women)

Mr. Speaker, I repeat that I made a mistake with regard to Prince George. I apologize to the people of Prince George.

MulticulturalismOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gurmant Grewal Canadian Alliance Surrey Central, BC

Mr. Speaker, the minister has a history of using that kind of paranoid statement against the people of Prince George and Kamloops. She is prejudiced against anyone outside her constituency. Canadians cannot trust her any more.

Would the Prime Minister fire her before her slurs hurt any more innocent Canadians?

MulticulturalismOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, with your permission, I would like the hon. member to repeat the question because I was talking with the House leader. I am sorry but I was not paying attention.

MulticulturalismOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gurmant Grewal Canadian Alliance Surrey Central, BC

Mr. Speaker, I will repeat the question if the Prime Minister will listen to it carefully.

The minister has a history of using that kind of paranoid statement against the people of Prince George and Kamloops. She is prejudiced against anyone outside her constituency. Canadians cannot trust the minister any more.

Would the Prime Minister fire her before her slurs hurt any more innocent Canadians?

MulticulturalismOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, we debated that last week. I said to the House that she made a statement, regretted the statement and apologized to the House of Commons. I repeat that we have accepted, in the tradition of parliament, her apology. The hon. member is not raising a new issue. He is referring to an incident for which the minister has offered her apology and for which we have accepted the apology.

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bloc

Pierrette Venne Bloc Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, QC

Mr. Speaker, all of the Prime Minister's lines of defence have fallen. There is now a very serious lack of confidence in the Prime Minister, not only in the House, but among the public and in his own caucus.

Does the Prime Minister realize that the best way to re-establish confidence, if this is still possible, is to agree to appear before his peers on the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs to account for his behaviour?

Prime MinisterOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Bonavista—Trinity—Conception Newfoundland & Labrador

Liberal

Brian Tobin LiberalMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, there has not been a single new piece of information brought forth today to substantiate this smear campaign.

As for the statement that the Prime Minister lacks the support of the caucus, let me say on behalf of every member of the caucus that we have full confidence in the Prime Minister. We will stand with him and beside him in the House.

Presence In GalleryOral Question Period

March 26th, 2001 / 3 p.m.

The Speaker

I would like to draw the attention of all hon. members to the presence in the gallery of His Excellency Anatoliy Zlenko, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Presence In GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the Chair will know of course of the rule of the House whereby one member cannot accuse an hon. member on the floor of the House of making statements that are not true. In fact, this occurred during question period.

I am sure that when the informal Hansard , the blues, as we refer to it, comes out in just a few minutes, it will confirm that such an accusation was made by the hon. member for Edmonton North against the right hon. the Prime Minister.

I will not repeat the precise words. That would only serve to make the statement twice. My request through the Chair would be that the hon. member be given the opportunity to withdraw what she said.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Deborah Grey Canadian Alliance Edmonton North, AB

Mr. Speaker, I withdraw.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Progressive Conservative Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, I have a point of order with respect to the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology.

It has come to my attention that the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, which is scheduled to meet at 9 a.m. tomorrow, Tuesday, the 27th, will be held in room 308 of the West Block.

Given the great general and public interest in having the meeting broadcast, I would ask that the chair of the committee use his office to facilitate the meeting in a room that will accommodate the large number of individuals and media who want to attend.

Points Of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

Question period ended a short time ago. If the hon. member had asked his question during question period it might perhaps have been in order. While he has made his point, it is not a question that is in order at this moment.

Committees Of The HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Scarborough—Rouge River Ontario

Liberal

Derek Lee LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present the ninth report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs regarding its order of reference of Tuesday, February 27, 2001 in relation to Bill C-9, an act to amend the Canada Elections Act and the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act.

The committee has considered Bill C-9 and reports the bill without amendment.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Guy St-Julien Liberal Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik, QC

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, I have the honour of presenting to the House a petition signed by residents and workers of the city of Val-d'Or and of the RCM of the Vallée de l'Or concerning the Sigma-Lamaque and Beaufor mines.

The petitioners are asking parliament to establish a financial assistance program for thin capitalization mines in Quebec's resource regions and the government, through its national highways program, to intervene in the McWatters project for the Sigma-Lamaque complex on the Trans-Canada, highway 117, in the municipality of Val-d'Or, through its Canada-Quebec-infrastructures program, part three.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to present two petitions from people who are concerned about kidney disease in Canada.

The first petition points out that real progress is being made in preventing and coping with kidney disease. The signatories call upon parliament to encourage the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to explicitly include kidney research as one of the institutes in its system to be named the kidney and urinary tract diseases institute.

The second petition is from citizens of the Peterborough area who are also interested in kidney disease.

The petitioners point out that kidney dialysis and transplantation have been successful for some people but for not for others. They point out that the availability of dialysis and kidneys for transplant are very limited.

They call upon parliament to support the bioartificial kidney, a research development which would eventually eliminate the need for dialysis or transplantation for those suffering from kidney disease.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

John M. Cummins Canadian Alliance Delta—South Richmond, BC

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition organized by a member of my constituency which calls upon the government to address the issue of video violence on the Internet and in video games.

The concern of my constituents is with the relationship in the criminal code between the words violence and sex, in that violence cannot stand alone as an issue in the criminal code. They think it should. They think the two should be separated and that the violence depicted in videos should be enough to disallow minors purchasing them.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Lanctôt Bloc Châteauguay, QC

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, the people in my riding would like to table this petition to put an end to sanctions against Iraq.

Of course, since Operation Desert Fox, in December 1998, over 10,000 air strikes have taken place against Iraq, producing an incalculable number of victims.

Whereas the continued UN sanctions against Iraq, considered to be the heaviest ever imposed, have devastated the Iraqi economy and resulted in the death of over 5,000 children a month, the people of my riding want the bombing to stop and serious peace negotiations to take place between Canada and the United Nations in order to increase efforts to provide food, medicines and infrastructure funding for the reconstruction of Iraq.

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Scarborough—Rouge River Ontario

Liberal

Derek Lee LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, before I ask that all questions be allowed to stand, I will indicate for the benefit of the member for New Brunswick Southwest that answers to Questions Nos. 1 and 2 are imminent.

I anticipate that those questions could be raised and introduced in the House tomorrow. I therefore ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Greg Thompson Progressive Conservative New Brunswick Southwest, NB

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. It is refreshing to hear the parliamentary secretary anticipating answers to my questions. For the record, those questions will be celebrating their first birthday within a few short weeks. Not only have they survived two parliaments, but they have survived an election as well.

Do the assurances of the parliamentary secretary relate to the sale of not only the 40 Huey helicopters but of the 10 Challenger aircraft as well? I remind him that there are two questions that are close to being one year old. Is he entertaining answering both of them?

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

The Speaker

The parliamentary secretary indicates that he has given the answer. Shall all the remaining questions stand?

Questions On The Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

The House resumed consideration of the motion that Bill C-7, an act in respect of criminal justice for young persons and to amend and repeal other acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Youth Criminal Justice ActGovernment Orders

3:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, we were speaking to Bill C-7, the amendment to replace the Young Offenders Act with the youth criminal justice act. We were speaking about the use of alternative measures or community based programs for non-violent offenders who pose no threat to society.

We firmly believe that only through lengthy periods of incarceration where there are effective rehabilitation programs including education would violent offenders cease to be dangerous.

We are encouraged that the bill would make these educational and rehabilitation programs mandatory. When and if young offenders are incarcerated, they would be forced to go through programs so that they could be integrated back into society thus making it a safer place to live. Protection of society is the key guiding principle of the Young Offenders Act or of the youth criminal justice act.

According to an old Statistics Canada fact finder a very small percentage of violent offenders are incarcerated. It means that a very small percentage of them are actually held in custody. They are unable to go through those programs while a disproportionate number of non-violent offenders are incarcerated, limiting the space and resources needed to rehabilitate the violent offenders.

Prison is not necessary for young persons who commit minor offences. We are not asking that there be incarceration in that regard. In many cases it may be detrimental to them. They may be assaulted by other violent young offenders or they may also learn from the other ones in the prison system. After their release, depending on how we look at it, the educational program may also allow them to progress to higher levels of crime or lower levels of crime.

We fully support alternative measures but only for non-violent first time offenders. In 1995, with the passage of Bill C-41, the Liberal government legislated conditional sentences and alternative measures. My party fought adamantly but to no avail to amend the legislation limiting the use of conditional sentences to non-violent offences. As a result of the government's failure to make such amendments, judges have repeatedly handed out conditional sentences throughout the country to persons convicted of serious crimes.

There is one case that has been raised many times in the House. A man who abducted and viciously sodomized a young woman was given a conditional sentence. The young woman was scarred for life. She now lives with that in her memories and is plagued by that conditional sentence.

A few weeks ago in Ottawa, another case dealt with a woman who was convicted of attempting to hire a hit man to kill her parents and was given a conditional sentence.

The first and guiding principle of Canada's criminal law should be the protection of society. Without strict limits placed on the use of alternative measures or conditional sentences, whether it be for violent adults or violent youth, the tenet for the protection of society would be violated.

In closing I urge the government to take the step to realize and to recognize the importance of dealing with the protection of society within Canada's criminal law. Do we need changes to the Young Offenders Act? Yes, we do. We applaud the government and the minister for recognizing the inadequacies of the Young Offenders Act and for realizing that we need to make changes.

Bill C-7 falls short. It is short of what is required for the protection of society. We are dealing with our children. The throne speech dealt with our children. The protection of our children and grandchildren is paramount. Bill C-7, although it moves in the right direction, falls short of giving the tools we need to help protect society and our children.

Youth Criminal Justice ActGovernment Orders

3:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant McNally Canadian Alliance Dewdney—Alouette, BC

I congratulate my colleague from Crowfoot for his excellent speech in which he mentioned diversion programs that may be applicable to helping young offenders.

I know of one such program in my own riding, a young diversion program, in which the member for Surrey North even as a sitting member is still involved and shows great commitment to. Could he indicate how youth diversion programs could be implemented?