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House of Commons Hansard #163 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was pesticide.

Topics

Export Development CanadaRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2) I have the honour to table, in both of the official languages of our country, the 2001 annual report of Export Development Canada.

I also take this opportunity under standing Order 32(2) of the House of Commons to table, in both official languages, the corporate plan summary 2002-06 of Export Development Canada.

Government Response to PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to two petitions.

Interparliamentary DelegationsRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Liberal

Sue Barnes Liberal London West, ON

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34(1) I have the honour to present to the House, in both official languages, a report of the Canadian branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association concerning the bilateral visit to Scotland, United Kingdom, which was held March 7 to 9, 2002.

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I believe if you seek it you would find that there is unanimous consent in the House for the following motion having to do with the business of the House for tomorrow. I move:

That, on Tuesday, April 9 the sitting of the House shall be suspended from 11.30 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

The Speaker

Does the hon. the government House leader have the unanimous consent of the House to propose his motion?

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed

(Motion agreed to)

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

April 8th, 2002 / 3:25 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to present a petition from citizens of Canada who want to extend the area of grape growing in this country. These petitioners are from Ontario, Quebec, Alberta, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and other provinces. They know that the minister of agriculture has been supportive of this effort to extend grape growing beyond the traditional areas.

The petitioners point out that by using new varieties of winter hardy, disease resistant grapevines currently growing in the northern United States, it is possible to create a viable wine industry in large portions of the Canadian plant hardiness zones four, five and six. They point out that the effects of these varieties would be to enhance employment in nursery and wine industries in Canada and provide an alternative crop to those suffering from low commodity prices such as groups in apples.

Every person signing this petition is willing to purchase these plants from overseas and pay a reasonable royalty for them. Therefore, they call upon parliament to expedite proceedings whereby grape varieties currently growing and being developed in programs such as those at the University of Minnesota, Cornell University and Elmer Swenson of Wisconsin be more speedily available for sale by Canadian nurseries to Canadian customers.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Liberal

Peter Adams Liberal Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition from the citizens of Peterborough who are concerned about kidney disease. The petitioners point out that this is a huge and growing problem in Canada and that real progress is being made in dealing with the various aspects of kidney disease.

They 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 institute of kidney and urinary tract diseases.

Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the following questions will be answered today: Nos. 109 and 112.

Question No. 109—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

With respect to the Department of National Defence's hiring of Reid's Bus Service to transport cadets on a round trip from Parrsboro to Amherst on February 2 and 3, 2002: ( a ) what was the cost of the transportation service provided to DND by Reid's Bus Service; ( b ) how many independent companies were asked to provide competitive quotes; ( c ) what is the current policy regarding private transportation contractors for cadets in rural communities like Parrsboro; and ( d ) does the service provided by Reid's Bus Service represent a policy change and, if so, under what authority?

Question No. 109—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

York Centre Ontario

Liberal

Art Eggleton LiberalMinister of National Defence

a

) The cost of transporting the cadets from Parrsboro to Amherst on February 2, 2002 was $283.40. The cost of transporting the cadets from Amherst to Parrsboro on February 3, 2002 was $268.40. b ) Competitive quotes were not utilized in this instance. CFB Halifax requested the service from Zinck Bus Company in accordance with the existing sanding offer agreement. Zinck Bus Company allocated this request to an affiliate, Boyd’s Bus Company. Reid’s Bus Service was not involved. c ) There are no policies specific to the transportation of cadets in rural communities such as Parrsboro. In accordance with treasury board and Financial Administration Act guidelines, transportation requirements of DND personnel including cadets are satisfied with DND resources; standing offer agreements, SOAs, or local purchase orders. SOAs are developed on an annual basis to meet DND requirements by Public Works and Government Services Canada. SOAs are awarded to companies based on their demonstrated ability to provide the service at the best price. Private transportation contractors in rural communities such as Parrsboro can be used should the SOA service provider not be able to accomplish the task. In addition, if private local transportation contractors can provide better value than the SOA service provider, and they are licensed to provide the service, their services may be contracted through a local purchase order. d ) The service provided to the cadets in Parrsboro does not represent a policy change and is consistent with treasury board and Financial Administration Act guidelines.

Question No. 112—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

John Herron Progressive Conservative Fundy Royal, NB

With respect to the dissemination of Environment Canada’s severe weather warnings, can the government identify the specific efforts made with regard to: ( a ) the development of an All-Channel Alert (ACA); ( b ) the publicizing of the Weatheradio network; ( c ) the development of “Internet PUSH+ technology”; and ( d ) if these efforts have not yet occurred, why not?

Question No. 112—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Halifax West Nova Scotia

Liberal

Geoff Regan LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

I am informed by the Department of Environment and the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission as follows:

Environment Canada

With respect to the dissemination of Environment Canada’s severe weather warnings, the government is pleased to identify the following specific efforts made with regard to: a ) the development of all-channel alert, ACA.

EC and Pelmorex, the Weather Network/Météomédia, continue to work to develop a national emergency warning system for cable TV subscribers. The system would deliver emergency text messages such as severe weather warnings on the bottom of the screen on every channel in a designated area served by a cable television service provider. Pelmorex planned to fund this system through an increase of 13 cents per month per subscriber. In a ruling announced February 23, 2001, the CRTC denied the application. The CRTC’s reasons for the denial were:

--the lack of a detailed plan for implementing the service on digital television distribution systems as quickly as possible;

--the lack of clarity in the costing proposal and;

--the need to address the concerns of the visually impaired.

Currently Pelmorex and the broadcasting and cable industry have solved the technical and administrative issues identified in the CRTC decision, except funding. It is believed that in lowering the cost from the current 13 cents per month user by 3 cents or more it is critical to get CRTC support. Efforts are under way to resolve this issue. In addition, the events of September 11 have clarified the need to be able to effectively communicate to citizens in times of emergency. To this effect EC is working with Industry Canada, IC, and the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness, OCIPEP, to develop a strategy for the development of a national emergency warning system of which the ACA could be one of the tools. It is anticipated that Pelmorex may be in a position to resubmit an application to the CRTC by early this summer. b ) On the publicizing of the Weatheradio network

Over the past two years Environment Canada’s Weatheradio network has undergone an extensive recapitalization that has effectively addressed infrastructure rust-out issues. In addition, a major program transformation is under way, as, by the end of this month, all Environment Canada Weatheradio programming will be available in both official languages. The overall Weatheradio communication strategy remains widespread but modest. Printed fact sheets have been produced and distributed through all Environment Canada’s regions. In addition, there are dedicated web pages explaining the Weatheradio service available to Internet users:

http://www.smc.ec.gc.ca/cd/factsheets/wxradio/index_e.cfm

http://www.msc-smc.ec.gc.ca/cd/factsheets/wxradio/index_f.cfm

Note: the Ontario region is undertaking a targeted Weatheradio publicity campaign at two locations, London and Sudbury. Each location will have print and radio ads for a three to four week period promoting the Weatheradio service. The results of the campaign will be evaluated by the end of April to note the overall results and assess if this type of targeted program will be expanded to other sites in the Ontario region. c ) On the development of Internet Push Plus technology

Environment Canada continues to explore the use of Informatics Technology, IT, as a mass dissemination delivery device. There are initiatives under way that will demonstrate the feasibility of pushing the severe weather warnings to important first line responders such as emergency preparedness officials, firefighters, police and other municipal officials. This service will be piloted this year to a select group. The pilot will be followed by a comprehensive review to verify and ensure that all severe weather warnings were delivered in a timely and effective manner. It is imperative that Environment Canada verify that delivery conduits can perform reliably and can ensure the weather warnings can be delivered in a matter of seconds 100% of the time. In the longer term, if technically feasible with the same delivery standards, the service could be expanded to the public if issues regarding the delivery can be guaranteed.

Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission a ) As an independent regulating authority we do not develop and publicize such undertakings. We intervene at the frequency allocation stage and at the distribution level upon application.

We understand that an application is expected for a television all-channel alert but we have not yet received it.

Question No. 112—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Liberal Halifax West, NS

I ask, Mr. Speaker, that the remaining questions be allowed to stand.

Question No. 112—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

The Speaker

Is it agreed?

Question No. 112—Routine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Request for Emergency DebateRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

The Speaker

The Chair has three requests for an emergency debate all on the same topic.

The first request came from the hon. member for Mercier. I shall therefore listen to the hon. member on this matter.

Request for Emergency DebateRoutine Proceedings

3:25 p.m.

Bloc

Francine Lalonde Bloc Mercier, QC

Mr. Speaker, I have made a request for an emergency debate on the crisis in the Middle East.

Briefly put, the public is being constantly bombarded by images that are extremely disturbing, as are all the reports by journalists on the events over there. Since the beginning of the second Intifada, there have been close to 2,000 fatalities.

This affects us here in a number of ways, because citizens of Jewish or Arabic origin feel the impact of these events even more, and provide the rest of us with explanations of what is going on.

Moreover, the UN resolutions and the demands by Kofi Annan and President Bush for Israel's withdrawal from the territories they are occupying once again, more or less in total abandonment of the Oslo process, are a major cause for concern as well. They seem to be headed for an international escalation of the conflict. At this time, there are bombings in southern Lebanon and Saddam Hussein has just cut off oil supplies. There are, therefore, very many causes for concern.

We parliamentarians have just come back from a recess during which our fellow citizens shared their fears with us. We have witnessed or taken part in demonstrations. People are very much concerned, and there are some questions about the role Canada can play in this situation.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs has said that Canada was even prepared to take part in a peace implementation force when the time comes. Canada is concerned, therefore, and has played a role in the history of this conflict. It has a responsibility, therefore.

For all of these reasons, and in order to reassure the public, in order to be in a position to make proposals and not just stand back and watch this conflict escalate without our being able to do anything about it, I am calling for an emergency debate on this matter.

Request for Emergency DebateRoutine Proceedings

3:30 p.m.

The Speaker

I have given careful consideration to the request by the hon. member for Mercier. She has the support of the hon. members for Cumberland--Colchester and Brampton Centre.

In my opinion, the position of the hon. member for Mercier is correct. This is an urgent matter. The Chair therefore rules that there will be a debate on this matter.

According to the powers I have under the standing orders, I will have the debate tomorrow evening rather than this evening. Accordingly the debate will take place in accordance with the standing orders upon the usual adjournment of the House tomorrow night.

I wish to inform the House that, because of the deferred recorded divisions, government orders will be extended by 20 minutes.

The House resumed consideration of Bill C-15B, an act to amend the Criminal Code (cruelty to animals and firearms) and the Firearms Act, as reported (with amendment) from the committee, and of the motions in Group No. 1.

An Act to amend the Criminal Code (cruelty to animals and firearms) and the Firearms ActGovernment Orders

3:30 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Jim Gouk Canadian Alliance Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise on Bill C-15B and also to mention the title of the bill in starting. I want to talk today about judicial activism. Before I go any further, for the edification of the few Liberals who are in the House to listen to this, I point out that this does relate specifically to the bill. They do not have to call me on it because I intend to relate this clearly to the bill before the House.

In the case of judicial activism, there is a lot of talk of this in the public today. A lot of people are very upset with a lot of the decisions that are coming down these days by judges in our courts. As a result, they are calling for an overhaul of the judicial system itself, how we select our judges, the terms, the conditions under which they serve and so on.

An example of the kinds of things that are bothering members of the public under judicial activism is conditional release, a provision provided by the Liberal government in the House. Under conditional release judges may sentence people to serve their sentence entirely in the public without ever having to go to jail. The idea behind this apparently is that if the judges feel there is no risk to society with the person not being incarcerated, then they do not have to sentence them to actual prison time.

The Canadian public was alarmed and shocked when they found that people who were committing very serious violent offences, such as violent rapes, were being sentenced under this provision for conditional sentencing and were ending up not serving any time in jail. The public was outraged, and rightly so. People brought that to us and we in turn brought that to the House. We raised the issue in parliament. The response by the minister of justice at that time, who is now the Minister of Industry, was that it was never his intention that this should apply to violent offenders. Yet to this day that provision has never been changed.

Some time ago I did a study, along with other members of the House, of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act. In the process of doing the study, we talked to all kinds of people involved in the corrections and justice system in the country. Some of the people we talked to were judges.

In talking to one particular judge, as an aside he brought up the subject of judicial activism. He said that he was not one to stand before us and say that none of the decisions made by his colleagues, the other judges, were made poorly. However he said that before we started to worry about changing the judges and judicial activism, we first should fix our legislation. He said that we could not keep writing legislation that caused them to be forced to consider anything brought forward by the attorneys for those who they were dealing with if the legislation provided the possibility of that. In the example of conditional sentencing, legislation did not preclude conditional sentencing being given to violent offenders and therefore they had to consider it.

That brings me to Bill C-15B, particularly the provision dealing with the penalties for cruelty to animals.

This places us in an awkward position, as many bills crafted by the Liberal government do, in that we support the motherhood issue of preventing cruelty to animals, and surely everyone in the House does. The question is not on the motherhood statement but rather on the application.

The previous minister of justice so often said that it was not their intention, then she carried on with whatever related to the particular bill of the day that she was involved in.

In this case she informed us that it was not her intention or the intention of the government that this would be applied arbitrarily to those who dealt with animals through farming, ranching and other forms of legitimate practices with animals. Yet the way the bill is crafted, there will certainly be those who will interpret it that way.

Just like in the case of conditional sentencing, where a judge says he or she has no choice but to consider that type of sentence because it does not preclude using that on a violent offender, there will be those who will raise charges against innocent people, who, through natural acts of animal husbandry, have not willfully harmed or been cruel to an animal. There are those who will nonetheless raise these types of prospects and the courts will have to look at them and in some cases convict people whom, according to the minister herself, harm was never intended to through the bill.

Her comment that anything that is legal today will be legal after the bill passes makes little sense given that she attempted to change so many things that are currently in place. If her only intention was to deal with genuine cruelty to animals, which should be dealt with, then all she had to do was raise the fines, the sentences and the penalties for those who are willfully cruel to animals. To do otherwise is to open up yet another Pandora's box. We have seen it with a variety of different judicial acts. We are seeing it even in the endangered species bill, wherein the government acknowledges the onus on the government to show that somebody willfully harmed an endangered species or its habitat but even if people do it accidentally they can still be charged.

The government's own response to that was that the government would rather leave it that way because it would make it easier to prosecute people in general and then consider special circumstances in the sentencing of people who are convicted of doing something without even knowing or being able to know that they were damaging habitat or the species itself. That kind of absurdity suggests that we will be allowing innocent people to be convicted and then say that it is okay because they will only get a tap on the wrist as their penalty. Nonetheless, it will still leave them with a criminal record. In light of September 11 and people with criminal records appearing at the borders, I can see the kinds of arguments they will have with American customs agents when they try to explain that their crimes were not really serious crimes because the government recognizes that they were really innocent and just convicted them because it was more convenient to do so.

That kind of absurdity in the crafting of bills is the same thing we are seeing in this provision in Bill C-15B. It is one of the reasons that the opposition often gets placed in the very awkward position of having to vote against bills that perhaps have good intent but are so poorly written and could so easily be corrected. It is a very frustrating thing in the House.

In the future, when you will still be elected, Madam Speaker, but the government will no longer be the government and you will have to sit in opposition, I am sure you will be thankful that the new government will not write bills in the same reckless and incoherent manner that the government does today.

An Act to amend the Criminal Code (cruelty to animals and firearms) and the Firearms ActGovernment Orders

3:40 p.m.

NDP

Wendy Lill NDP Dartmouth, NS

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to offer a few remarks at the report stage of Bill C-15B, the second part of the justice omnibus bill, which deals with changes to the gun control registry and cruelty to animals. The section I want to speak to in this group of amendments strengthens the sections of the criminal code dealing with cruelty to animals. I support the proposed amendments and am proud to say that my constituents have been very vocal about supporting these amendments as well.

Our laws relating to cruelty to animals are written to exclusively benefit the human. Currently the legislative architecture of the criminal code leaves animals with the legal standing of property. A court must now define the abuses or neglect of an animal as an offence against the right of property. This offers the same protections and defences to the accused as someone who allegedly steals cars or forges credit cards. I find it disturbing that sections of the criminal code which currently forbid cruelty to animals are treated in the same way as possible offences of cruelty to computer equipment.

I am sad to say that after listening to the low level of the attacks on the government position in this debate I am left with the impression that some commenting on this matter care more for their cars or their computers than for their pets or for the animals that provide us with food or clothing.

No one suggests making assault or murder an offence against property. Offences against people are in a much more serious category, with harsher penalties and fewer defences, to reflect the more serious harm our society believes takes place when we commit a crime against a living person as opposed to a crime against property.

I believe that animals are living creatures as well. They feel pain and share this great planet with us. They are a critical part of our ecosystem. They provide comfort, food, clothing, companionship, loyalty and endless entertainment. They deserve better than to be given only the protection of property. That is why I and every single caller to my constituency office support this bill giving animals their own status as creatures that can feel pain.

The vicious opposition being brought to bear against the bill by the Alliance opposition party originally puzzled me. After all, concerns of farmers, fishermen, hunters and trappers were dealt with by ensuring that they would still have many of the defences they possess in the existing code available to them and would therefore not be subject to frivolous prosecution or harassment, but I understand the Alliance position a little better now that I have heard this debate. Their position reflects their new leader's attitude toward Canada, which some of us call the fortress Alberta position. Their opposition has little to do with protection of animals or with the bill.

Listen to what we have heard so far today. The Alliance members suggest that we oppose this and also oppose the bill to protect endangered species, as the Klein government has called on them to do. After all, as Klein says, property should have more protection than endangered species. They are saying to oppose the bill and to kill Canada's support for the Kyoto protocols to reduce greenhouse gases and to stop climate change, as Ralph Klein has said they must, because it would cost our poor struggling oil companies some profit. They oppose any attempt to stop global warming but also say that we should kill the bill and start to compensate farmers and cattlemen who are suffering through an extended drought in western Canada.

The bill is not about Kyoto, but I hope they remember that droughts are probably caused by climate change and if they want to help drought stricken farmers we should support Kyoto. One member even accused the former minister of justice of pandering to special interests and playing politics, saying that is why there is support for the bill. As far as I can tell, the bill is not about the last election or deals made by the former minister of justice. It is about animal rights.

Here is my position and I hope it is more to the point than some of the others that have been put on the record today. Animals should have more rights than property. Endangered species are animals as well and therefore they should have rights too. While the bill is not perfect and some of the loopholes such as the inclusion of the words “wilful” and “reckless” introduced by the government water down the original intent, we should pass this and try to improve on it later. I support animal rights and I, along with my other colleagues in the New Democratic Party, will be in support of Bill C-15B at report stage.

An Act to amend the Criminal Code (cruelty to animals and firearms) and the Firearms ActGovernment Orders

3:45 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Merrifield Canadian Alliance Yellowhead, AB

Madam Speaker, it is a privilege for me to rise and speak on the bill, but once again I have to shake my head when I think about how the good idea of protecting animals could result in such a bad piece of legislation. I guess we should not be all that surprised. It seems to be a trend in the government, which has somehow managed to take an idea such as safer streets and turn it into a $700 million attack on law-abiding citizens with gun control. We can see a sort of trend coming forward from the government. We have the responsibility to make effective legislation, the responsibility for the needs of all Canadians. This attack on rural Canadians must stop.

Canadians are supportive of the current legislation of protecting animals under the criminal code. Instead of strengthening the penalties that violators face under the current legislation, the justice minister has brought forward a far-reaching piece of legislation.

There are two major concerns that I have about Bill C-15B. First, the definition of an animal is way too broad. The bill's proposed definition of an animal includes non-human vertebrates and all animals having the capacity to feel pain. Let us just take a couple of examples that would fit into those categories.

Rats feel pain and have vertebrae. I come from a province that is rat-free. We spend millions of dollars a year dealing with the problems of rat control within our province. Because of the natural boundaries of the Rockies on one side, we pushed back the rat population as much as we possibly could into Saskatchewan, yet under the application of the bill that could put in jeopardy. As well, the gopher problem is rampant in the prairies. The member from Lakeland, who sits next to me, could be called to task under the bill for bringing forward a private member's bill to introduce gopher poison.

It is not so much that we have a problem with the criminal code or with protection of animal rights, which we believe in; it is how the bill can be applied that gives us a great deal of concern. The new definition would provide new legal protection for a number of living organisms which have never before been provided with that kind of protection. My second concern with this piece of legislation is that it removes a protection currently provided under section 429(2) of the criminal code for persons who use animals for legitimate, lawful and justifiable practices, moving animal cruelty from under the umbrella of property offences into a new section emphasizing animal rights as opposed to animal welfare.

This throws it wide open to jurisdictional interpretation, where judges are allowed to perhaps favour special interest groups when it comes to animal rights. I see this change elevating the costs that are already overburdening our court system as frivolous lawsuits from animal rights activists skyrocket.

In my riding of Yellowhead, raising animals on farms for food has been a way of life for generations. I have raised dairy cattle and beef cattle and I currently raise elk at the same time. I know a little about what happens. The reality is that if we treat our animals poorly they will not be healthy. Sick and injured animals are not able to be productive and if they are not able to be productive, one is not going to be a farmer for long. I do not believe that is actually is happening on most of our farms that deal with the husbandry of animals. The fear of much of the agricultural community in my riding is that they have had the experience of activist judges or aggressive animal rights activists calling the shots. The skills of raising animals on farms have been developed and handed down from generation to generation.

Madam Speaker, if you have ever been on a farm you will know that everything that happens with regard to animals is not necessarily pleasant. Castration, dehorning and vaccinations might be seen by the outside viewer as harming the animal. The truth is that they are necessary for the strengthening and survival of the herd. It is not much different from a spoonful of honey making the medicine go down for children. We must do it because we love the child. Most farmers I know love their animals, look after them and do whatever is necessary to keep them healthy.

We must look at what motivated the former Minister of Justice, the hon. member for Edmonton West, to give animals special status. In a fundraising letter in the winter of 2002 the director of the Animal Alliance of Canada claimed responsibility for the minister's narrow election win. Could Bill C-15B be political payback for its work on her behalf?

I cannot emphasize enough the importance the Canadian Alliance puts on the welfare and safety of animals. The provisions currently in force within the criminal code could provide the required protection through increased penalties for violators. The scope of Bill C-15B is not clearly outlined. It would provide the government another opportunity to target law abiding farmers and hunters as criminals. I therefore cannot support Bill C-15B.