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House of Commons Hansard #181 of the 37th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-55.

Topics

Leadership CampaignsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gerry Ritz Canadian Alliance Battlefords—Lloydminster, SK

Mr. Speaker, it is great to have guidelines but if nobody enforces them they are really just lines on a piece of paper that mean nothing.

The minister of fisheries made no apology for this blatant abuse of tax dollars. Here is what he told the Canadian press when they took him to task for using the DFO surveillance plane for his politicking. He stated:

I'm a politician and I'm campaigning all the time...I can't stop it. I'm always getting ready for the next election.

Will the Prime Minister stop floundering and just release his minister of fisheries?

Leadership CampaignsOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Victoria B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson LiberalMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, in carrying out his duties the hon. minister of fisheries visited the front where the harp seal happened to be. It is many miles off the coast of Newfoundland, to the northeast of Newfoundland. He did that of course by aircraft and on his return he stopped at Gander. It is perfectly acceptable for him, in the course of his duties as fisheries minister, to stop off in a community in Newfoundland.

HousingOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure and Crown Corporations.

The task force on urban issues today released its interim report calling for an urban strategy for Canada. Within this report are a number of recommendations, including a national affordable housing program.

Could the parliamentary secretary tell the House what the government's response is to this recommendation?

HousingOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Mississauga West Ontario

Liberal

Steve Mahoney LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Infrastructure and Crown Corporations

Mr. Speaker, first, I too want to congratulate that member and all members of the task force for their excellent report.

The government currently provides $1.9 billion annually on housing assistance for lower income Canadians, including first nations, and a $753 million strategy to address homelessness. CMHC mortgage insurance has helped one in three Canadians buy a home. A new $1.36 billion affordable housing initiative with the province and territories has been announced. This report is another--

HousingOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The hon. member for Selkirk--Interlake.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Howard Hilstrom Canadian Alliance Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, the U.S. senate and house of representatives have brought forward a farm bill that will require country of origin labelling for all meats, fruits, vegetables and peanuts. U.S. retailers are saying that they will get around the expense of this new law by only buying from U.S. farmers.

The U.S. agriculture secretary, Ann Veneman, is in Ottawa to declare war on Canadian agriculture through gross violations of our trade agreements.

Will the Liberal government tell the U.S. secretary today that we intend to challenge U.S. laws under WTO and NAFTA rules?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, I will not have the opportunity to tell her to her face today but I will tell her to her face tomorrow when I meet with her.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Howard Hilstrom Canadian Alliance Selkirk—Interlake, MB

Mr. Speaker, if farmers in this country are happy with that ridiculous and stupid answer, I will be hanged. That is a disgrace to our farming community.

Besides the agriculture minister, I have also asked the minister of the wheat board whether or not he will support this trade injury compensation program. The U.S. farm bill put it out to close the gap between the U.S. and European subsidies. What does our government do? It does absolutely nothing.

Will the wheat board minister support the trade industry adjustment program and finance our farmers to keep them competitive?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, as of the last 48 hours or so, the United States is in the process of finalizing its U.S. farm bill. There is a complete consensus on the Canadian side that it is a foul and insidious piece of legislation and that we must fight it by every means at our disposal. That is why on this side we are anxious to have a constructive dialogue with all Canadians about the best way of summoning all possible resources to fight the U.S. trade.

TaiwanOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Bloc

Antoine Dubé Bloc Lévis-Et-Chutes-De-La-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, this morning, the government majority on the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs rejected a motion in support of Taiwan's request to be admitted as an observer to the World Health Organization. And yet, Taiwan is an important transit point for travellers entering or leaving Asia.

Given the high risks of an epidemic because of the large number of travellers, and the expertise which Taiwan has developed in the health sector, will the government support its request to be allowed observer status in the World Health Organization?

TaiwanOral Question Period

2:50 p.m.

Toronto Centre—Rosedale Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, Taiwan can now freely obtain information on health from the WHO. The problem is that Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations and that the WHO is a UN body.

Taiwan has the right to go to this organization, obtain information, and participate on a non-status basis, in other words, not as a member country, but as an interested member of the international community.

Public ServiceOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, earlier this week, the Prime Minister announced a shuffle among senior public servants, including the Clerk of the Privy Council. Following this announcement, certain commentators wondered whether the overhaul of the legislation governing the public service was in question.

Can the President of the Treasury Board reassure us that this overhaul of the legislation governing the public service will take place as scheduled?

Public ServiceOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Westmount—Ville-Marie Québec

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard LiberalPresident of the Treasury Board

Mr. Speaker, it is very clear that the government is continuing its indepth reform of human resources management in the Public Service of Canada.

The government has undertaken to maintain a competent, professional, bilingual, representative and non-partisan public service. The Prime Minister himself has appointed a task force to proceed with this reform. I am assured that the new clerk will help us finish this reform by next fall.

Gun RegistryOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Garry Breitkreuz Canadian Alliance Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, the justice minister is running a gun registry that is fraught with errors. Get this. He registers a primitive muzzle-loading rifle as a machine gun and a revolver as a machine gun.

The RCMP has provided reports documenting hundreds of thousands of errors in the registry.

How can a garbage collection system like the minister is running be of any benefit to the police?

Gun RegistryOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Northumberland Ontario

Liberal

Paul MacKlin LiberalParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Mr. Speaker, they just do not get it. This program is a public health and safety program. It is designed to protect the public and it is doing a marvellous job.

A recent poll suggested that it is supported by 76% of the population and it is supported for a good reason.

Guaranteed Income SupplementOral Question Period

May 2nd, 2002 / 2:55 p.m.

Bloc

Marcel Gagnon Bloc Champlain, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Minister of Human Resources Development slammed the door on full and total retroactivity for the guaranteed income supplement. When I toured Quebec, I heard many examples, including a lady in Sherbrooke living below the poverty line who has been deprived of what would be $90,000 in today's dollars.

Does the minister not have a duty to do right by the seniors who have been disadvantaged by the system, such as the lady I have just referred to, and to allow them full retroactivity?

Guaranteed Income SupplementOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Brant Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart LiberalMinister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, as far as retroactivity is concerned, our program is as generous as similar programs in Quebec, if not more generous.

For example, family allowances and drug plans have retroactivity of one year. Others, such as their rent subsidy, housing, and employment assistance programs have no retroactivity at all. We are, of course, doing much the same thing.

TaxationOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

NDP

Judy Wasylycia-Leis NDP Winnipeg North Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the finance minister who may be aware of a decision yesterday by the Manitoba NDP government to lift the provincial sales tax on feminine hygiene products. In so doing, it acknowledged that a tax on essential and necessary products used exclusively by women is unfair and discriminatory.

Will the Minister of Finance do the same? Will he put an end to the gender tax and remove the GST from sanitary napkins and tampons?

TaxationOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, the government is constantly reviewing tax policy and obviously we are constantly reviewing those areas to which the tax policy applies, and we will continue to do that.

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Greg Thompson Progressive Conservative New Brunswick Southwest, NB

Mr. Speaker, the Minister for International Trade has failed miserably in his attempts to protect our softwood lumber industry against the heavy handedness of the Americans.

He is on record as saying earlier that he knew these negotiations were not going to work, but yesterday the Ministers of HRDC and Natural Resources had nothing to offer our workers in the west coast and that will be the same across the country as we go along.

Is it not time that the Prime Minister took a special interest in this file or at least at the bear minimum appoint a minister who can get some action?

Softwood LumberOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Papineau—Saint-Denis Québec

Liberal

Pierre Pettigrew LiberalMinister for International Trade

Mr. Speaker, let me be very clear. I can tell the member that the present Prime Minister has taken a deeper interest in the softwood lumber dispute with the United States than any previous prime minister. At every opportunity, he has raised it with the president of the United States.

Everyone has given 100% effort and energy on this softwood lumber file. We have been working with the provinces and with industry. There is a consensus for the efforts we have made.

The problem is not in this House--

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

I draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of His Excellency Lyonpo Jigmi Y.Thinley, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Bhutan.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

I also draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of Mr. Jose Kusugak, President of the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.