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House of Commons Hansard #70 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was community.

Topics

HealthOral Question Period

11:35 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Keith Martin Canadian Alliance Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, Canadian patients are waiting desperately for organ transplants, so much so that several of them are paying thousands of dollars to Canadian businessmen to go abroad and purchase organs from poor Chinese people.

My question is for the Minister of Health. Why has the government dragged its heels, knowing full well that it has had solutions on its lap for the last two years, including the health committee's report? Why has it not implemented those solutions to save Canadian lives?

HealthOral Question Period

11:35 a.m.

Anjou—Rivière-Des-Prairies Québec

Liberal

Yvon Charbonneau LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I wish to tell the hon. member that the practice that is reported in some newspapers today and to which he is referring is totally reprehensible. Health Canada absolutely condemns it.

The Canadian government has taken very concrete measures. We invested over $20 million to deal with the issue of organ and tissue transplants. Following the report, we set up a national council on organ donations and transplants. We implemented all the recommendations made in the report of the House committee and I think that the situation will improve.

HealthOral Question Period

11:35 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Keith Martin Canadian Alliance Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

Mr. Speaker, we do not want more reports. We do not want more studies. We want action. These people are dying; 150 Canadians are dying every year and the number is increasing. The government has mud on its face and it had better fix the problem soon.

Again my question is for the minister. Why have they not implemented the solutions in the health committee's report, active solutions that will save lives? Will they ban people from going abroad and purchasing organs from live donors?

HealthOral Question Period

11:35 a.m.

Anjou—Rivière-Des-Prairies Québec

Liberal

Yvon Charbonneau LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Health

Mr. Speaker, I understand the hon. member's impatience.

However, we are actually in the process of taking measures. The parliamentary committee produced a report. That is the past. The report's recommendations are being implemented. The council that was recommended by the standing committee of the House has been set up and the budgets are there. The situation will improve with the co-operation of the provinces and of the medical staff involved in this area.

Disaster ReliefOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Liberal

Mac Harb Liberal Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of National Defence. Recent television news has shown some dramatic images coming from forest fires in Alberta.

Has the Government of Canada received any requests for assistance from the government of Alberta and, if so, what does it plan to do about it?

Disaster ReliefOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Haliburton—Victoria—Brock Ontario

Liberal

John O'Reilly LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of National Defence

Mr. Speaker, our hearts go out to the people of Alberta who have suffered great personal losses due to these fires. As a former firefighter, I wish to express my admiration for firefighters across Canada who are battling these blazes.

At this time the federal government has received no request for assistance from the government of Alberta. We are nonetheless ready to help, if asked, much like during the ice storm and the Saguenay and Red River floods.

InfrastructureOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Bev Desjarlais NDP Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the President of the Treasury Board. Over the last six years the Liberal government has cut $3.6 billion out of rural economies through the elimination of the Crow benefit alone. The Liberal legacy in rural Canada is crumbling roads, farm closures and tainted water.

Europe and the U.S. care about their agricultural communities. They invest in their infrastructure and value added economies. Will the minister tell the House why the infrastructure program is putting less funding back into rural Canada than the Liberal government has cut?

InfrastructureOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard LiberalPresident of the Treasury Board and Minister responsible for Infrastructure

Mr. Speaker, contrary to what the hon. member is saying, the new Infrastructure Canada program includes a requirement for each province to respect a certain percentage for rural areas.

We have reached agreements. Agreements have been signed and the amount is based on the proportion of people living in rural areas. This initiative shows that the federal government cares about what is going on in the country's rural areas.

InfrastructureOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

NDP

Bev Desjarlais NDP Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, the minister has admitted publicly that the so-called green infrastructure program is not sufficient. The green infrastructure program requires cash strapped provinces and municipalities to put up two-thirds of the money. As a result, some provinces are not accessing the funds.

Will the government commit to an infrastructure program that is not tied to matched funds from the municipalities and provinces?

InfrastructureOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard LiberalPresident of the Treasury Board and Minister responsible for Infrastructure

Mr. Speaker, the only obligation in the agreement we signed with the provinces is that the federal government will pay one-third the cost of a project.

Nothing in the agreement forbids a province from deciding to take two-thirds of the cost. Nobody said that the municipality should be able to afford one-third of the project. In some remote areas of the country, especially, provinces are aware of the situation and are ready to help their municipalities.

Dairy IndustryOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

John Herron Progressive Conservative Fundy Royal, NB

Mr. Speaker, dairy farmers of Canada are challenging whether the Liberal government really believes in protecting supply management. The federal government has said time and time again that it supports supply management, but actions speak louder than words.

In early May dairy farmers of Canada were informed that it was the intention of the minister to stop issuing supplemental import permits for the importation of cheese sticks only after September 1. Supply management does not work if we cannot control our own borders.

Why is the government waiting until after September 1 to actually protect the rights of the dairy farmers of Canada. It is the cows that are supposed to be milked, not Canadian dairy farmers.

Dairy IndustryOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

London—Fanshawe Ontario

Liberal

Pat O'Brien LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, as usual the member is given to quite a bit of hyperbole in his comments.

We are talking about less than 1% of domestic cheese production. For the last 20 years there has been absolutely no change in government policy. When there is an increase in excess of the quotas, it is for specific consumers requiring a specific product.

The member has exaggerated the case. I want to tell him that the minister recently raised this issue with Mr. Zoellick in the United States.

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

11:40 a.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of the Environment. Isle Haute is a pristine island located in the Bay of Fundy. It is the home of endangered species and is a real treasure. Recently it was declared surplus by the coast guard and may be put up for sale.

Some months ago in the House we asked the Minister of the Environment if he would declare this a wilderness preserve. Has the minister made any progress on that request?

The EnvironmentOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Kitchener Centre Ontario

Liberal

Karen Redman LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, Nova Scotia's Isle Haute is of major ecological significance for several species at risk in colonial seabirds.

The federal government believes this property should be preserved and protected. That is why Environment Canada is working with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans to ensure this island is protected as a national wildlife area.

This designation will be a major step forward to protect and recover species at risk in the region, such as the peregrine falcon and several rare plant species.

This kind of co-operation and science based action is exactly what is fundamental to the proposed species at risk legislation.

JusticeOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Bob Mills Canadian Alliance Red Deer, AB

Mr. Speaker, the psychological torment continues to worsen. Last night, John Schneeberger, convicted pedophile, issued a letter full of uncertainties. He said he would not have the kids come to the jail, provided they live up to his conditions.

Can the minister not see that this law must be fixed so convicted sex offenders cannot use kids for blackmail?

JusticeOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Erie—Lincoln Ontario

Liberal

John Maloney LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, we share the member's concern for the well-being of the Dillman children.

As the member opposite knows, the Minister of Justice does not have the authority or the jurisdiction to interfere with an order of the court. We remain committed to promoting positive outcomes for children and their families following a separation or divorce.

In the present situation variations in custody orders can be made at any time. In the situation in question, the mother may well be advised to do so or to appeal the existing order.

JusticeOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Bob Mills Canadian Alliance Red Deer, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Justice tells a single mom to go to Saskatchewan, to leave her job, to hire a lawyer and to develop her own psychological evidence. Now we have a guy giving ultimatums from prison.

Schneeberger has paid $50 in support in the last three years. This sex offender is now setting the rules for access once he gets out of prison, and he is eligible in November of this year.

We need Lisa's law to prevent the creation of psychological child victims. Will the minister change it now for future kids who might be forced into this situation?

JusticeOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Erie—Lincoln Ontario

Liberal

John Maloney LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, as I indicated, we remain committed to promoting positive outcomes for children and their families following a separation or divorce.

We are currently engaged with the provinces and territories in a comprehensive review of the custody and access provisions under the federal Divorce Act and provincial legislation. These public consultations are currently under way.

Our shared goal is to create an effective family law system across Canada that will promote a child centred approach by focusing on children's needs and their best interests.

Water ResourcesOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Environment Canada web site contains an invitation to tender with the objective of putting a price on Canada's water resources.

It goes on to say that this price will apply in particular to bulk water exports and to access to groundwater supplies.

Are we to understand from this that the government has moved much further ahead than it lets on, and has even decided to change its position as far as bulk water exports are concerned?

Water ResourcesOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Ottawa South Ontario

Liberal

John Manley LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, there has been no change in our policy. We are about to enact Bill C-6, which opposes bulk water sales. There has been no change, and that is perfectly clear.

Water ResourcesOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, in connection with Bill C-6, those who appeared before the committee expressed general concern. The government has just sent a completely contradictory message with this invitation to tender.

Is the government aware that, by asking that a price be put on water, it is giving in to the arguments of those wishing to buy our water, the Americans in particular, and is opening the door to all manner of abuses?

Water ResourcesOral Question Period

11:45 a.m.

Kitchener Centre Ontario

Liberal

Karen Redman LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, good environmental policy is based on good science. I am reading from the actual website.

It is an initiative to develop a methodology to value water so that it can be applied to a broad range of environmental assets. It is a case of developing indicators to assess environmental value over the long term.

It is simply incorrect to infer that this in any way has to do with bulk water. It is simply not so and we have not changed our policy. The government remains opposed to bulk water removal.

Transportation SafetyOral Question Period

June 1st, 2001 / 11:50 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Fitzpatrick Canadian Alliance Prince Albert, SK

Mr. Speaker, since 1988 the government has been studying safety for uncontrolled rail crossings while 70 people have been killed at such crossings in Saskatchewan alone.

When will the minister act on the request of the Saskatchewan Safety Council to reflectorize those crossings?

Transportation SafetyOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Algoma—Manitoulin Ontario

Liberal

Brent St. Denis LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for his question. I am sure he reads the estimates like all of us try to do, but he is aware that Transport Canada invests substantial millions of dollars each year in co-operation with municipalities to enhance safety at crossings.

Transport Canada works with municipalities and their provincial counterpart officials to ensure the most effective use of dollars to deal with dangerous situations. Transport Canada is very responsive in this regard. I encourage the member to examine the estimates more carefully.

Transportation SafetyOral Question Period

11:50 a.m.

Canadian Alliance

Brian Fitzpatrick Canadian Alliance Prince Albert, SK

Mr. Speaker, the industry is ready to move on this matter. It has been wanting to move on it for quite some time.

The government has been studying the issue for 13 years. Now it tells us it needs time to consult with the territories that have very few crossings. Before more citizens are killed, will the minister take immediate action to make uncontrolled rail crossings safe?