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House of Commons Hansard #54 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was provinces.

Topics

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Minister of Public Works and Government Services.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel Québec

Liberal

Alfonso Gagliano LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I repeat that this contract was competed for. It is normal procedure after a competition for departmental officials to send a letter to those that participated to say thanks but that this is the result of the competition.

The hon. member, by stating that, confirms this was a competitive process.

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn Progressive Conservative St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, the original contract to sell spares was amended to sell 40 helicopters and 10 Challenger jets.

When was the minister aware that Lancaster was closing its facility in Canada and moving some $77 million worth of DND parts to the United States? What steps did the government take to ensure the security of our assets?

What will happen to these parts in the case of a bankruptcy of Lancaster and in light of the illegal dealings of the Florida partner?

National DefenceOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel Québec

Liberal

Alfonso Gagliano LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, I am informed that Lancaster is using the facilities in Florida as warehousing. Therefore it still keeps control of all the assets it is supposed to sell.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, on Tuesday the Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board stated that elected members of the board represented all western Canadian farmers. However it is clear that the Canadian Wheat Board does not represent organic farmers.

Organic growers want the right and responsibility of marketing outside the wheat board system. The minister is the only one who can give these farmers the freedom they are demanding.

When will the minister actually listen to farmers and give organic growers the ability to process and market their own grain?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, what I said in response to a question earlier this week was that as a result of a piece of legislation adopted in the House more than two years ago, the governance of the Canadian Wheat Board is no longer in the hands of government appointed commissioners.

That governance is in the hands of a modern, corporate style board of directors, 15 members in total, of whom two-thirds, a full 10, are directly elected by farmers. The act specifically says that all the power and all the authority of the Canadian Wheat Board are vested in the hands of those directors.

Farmers should decide, not politicians either on this side or that side.

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Kevin Sorenson Canadian Alliance Crowfoot, AB

Mr. Speaker, obviously the minister does not understand the issue because organic farmers were not part of the process that elected the board.

Arnold Schmidt has diversified into organic wheat production. Mr. Schmidt has gone further than just being an organic producer. He has developed markets for flour milled from his own grain. Unfortunately Mr. Schmidt cannot get an export permit for his organic flour from the Canadian Wheat Board. Why does the minister insist on stifling rural entrepreneurs and value added products such as Mr. Schmidt's?

Canadian Wheat BoardOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, respecting the democratic governance of the Canadian Wheat Board which was put in place by parliament, I would invite the hon. gentleman or his constituent or the person to whom he just referred to have that issue put squarely before the directors of the Canadian Wheat Board.

If the hon. gentleman would provide me with the details he just referred to, I will make sure that the board of directors considers the request.

Labelling Of Genetically Modified FoodsOral Question Period

2:45 p.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski-Neigette-Et-La Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday, at an international meeting on genetically modified foods, Canada backed the United States' decision to question mandatory labelling of food.

How can the minister justify this about-face when the Canadian Food Inspection Agency just recently issued a certificate to the Unibroue brewery guaranteeing that its products were “GMO-free”?

Labelling Of Genetically Modified FoodsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, Canada has not changed its position. We have a system in place at the present time that is compulsory if the make up or the nutrition of the product has been changed or if there is an allergenic possibility from food which has been affected by genetic modification.

As I have said a number of times, and the hon. member already knows, we are working a set of criteria with the Canadian General Standards Board to put in place, if we so desire, a system of voluntary labelling.

Labelling Of Genetically Modified FoodsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski-Neigette-Et-La Mitis, QC

Mr. Speaker, will the minister admit that his delay in adopting a GMO labelling program could seriously limit the access of Quebec and Canadian producers to foreign markets, which are apparently much more cautious than Canada in this area?

Labelling Of Genetically Modified FoodsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, I hope the hon. member is not saying that the government should take any action before the consultation process with some 60 organizations, the Consumers' Association of Canada and many others, led by the Canadian General Standards Board, is completed and before we review the recommendations of the royal society, as well as hear the results of the consultation with the Canadian Biotechnology Advisory Council.

JusticeOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Paul Forseth Canadian Alliance New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Justice. We question the government's priority to protect children and to do what it can to fix the Divorce Act.

It is said to be a theoretical priority with the government, but it appears the minister has absolutely no energy to help families in trouble. Consultation appears to be the chosen method of resistance. When will we see a bill that embodies the shared parenting model that all of parliament recommended to the minister?

JusticeOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as I have said before on this issue, family law is a shared jurisdiction. We are working with the provinces. We have issued a consultation paper in partnership with the provinces and the territories.

We will be consulting province by province with thousands of Canadians on what they would like to see not only in terms of reform of the Divorce Act but in family law statutes passed by the provinces.

JusticeOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Paul Forseth Canadian Alliance New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, BC

Mr. Speaker, we see a pattern. The Liberals cannot manage.

The Minister of Health had a road map eight years ago on reproductive technology and he is just getting around to doing something now. With the Minister of Justice we see the same pattern of responding to the road map which sits on her desk.

Looking at her ability to manage, it appears she will legislate for puppies and kittens before she will legislate for children. Will the minister lead the provinces and show that they can govern for the 21st century instead of the 19th century?

JusticeOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, let me say again that we have always had as our guiding principle the best interest of children.

I have a document on custody, access and child support in Canada which I would happily table here this afternoon. This is the joint federal-provincial consultation document with which we are going out to Canadians.

I am again appalled that party which speaks the rhetoric of grassroots consultation does not want to hear from Canadians in relation to—

JusticeOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

The Speaker

I would not have thought it necessary to remind hon. members against the use of props. Documents can be quoted from but not bandied about.

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

May 3rd, 2001 / 2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Roger Gallaway Liberal Sarnia—Lambton, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Foreign Affairs. The minister will know that the governor of the state of Michigan is talking of issuing licences for directional drilling of oil wells under lakes Huron and Michigan.

Having regard to the risk of damage to the Great Lakes, will the minister register our concerns and objections with the Bush administration?

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I will certainly take the concerns of the hon. member under advisement. I can assure him that if we do have concerns about the effect of drilling on the quality of water in the Great Lakes we will most certainly take them up with the relevant U.S. administration.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Keith Martin Canadian Alliance Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, the terrible civil war in the Sudan rages on, a war that has killed more than two million people in the last 18 years. While the human rights committee will study the issue, other people will die of famine, war and starvation.

Will the minister call upon our IGAD partners to put pressure on the government of Sudan to implement the ceasefire to which it agreed?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, we have done so and will continue to do so. I agree entirely with the hon. member that this horrendous situation is one that cries out for international concern and response.

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Keith Martin Canadian Alliance Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, three million people in the southern Sudan face famine today. Up to one million people will die within the next month.

My question for the Minister of Foreign Affairs is very simple. What has he done on the part of Canada to reverse this impending catastrophe?

Foreign AffairsOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member of all members knows that this is an issue that Canada has been engaged in on a longstanding basis. We have worked with our IGAD partners. We have been involved in the region. We have established a special envoy. Members of the House have visited the region and offered advice as well.

While the question may be a simple one, unfortunately like so many of these horrible situations in the world the solutions are anything but simple.

Food InspectionOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Bloc Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the attitude of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food is, to say the least, confusing.

When it comes to tracing shipments of Starlink corn, the minister tells us not to worry, that everything is under control and that the inspection system is the best in the world. When it comes to labelling products containing GMOs, the same system no longer seems as effective.

How does the minister explain that the same food inspection system can be foolproof when it comes to tracking misplaced GMOs, but not up to the task when labelling is involved?

Food InspectionOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, we can all be proud of the food safety system in Canada.

As I reminded the House previously, before any product created with the use of advanced technology such as biotechnology is registered in Canada, it must be reviewed for its safety to humans, the environment and livestock by the Ministry of Health and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

When and if we are informed that a unsafe product has entered Canada or the system, we seek it and we recall it.