This week, I changed much of the tech behind this site. If you see anything that looks like a bug, please let me know!

House of Commons Hansard #146 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was code.

Topics

2 p.m.

The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada, and we will be led by the hon. member for Dewdney—Alouette.

National DefenceStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Bob Wood Liberal Nipissing, ON

Mr. Speaker, as you know, the House of Commons has a very successful program which allows MPs to spend time at a military base in Canada.

I had the opportunity last week to spend it at 14 Wing in Greenwood, Nova Scotia. I was able to see at first hand what 14 Wing really means to our air force and especially to the east coast of Canada. I must say that I was extremely impressed.

During the week, I spent a lot of time with 415 Squadron, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Yvan Boilard. As part of its job, it cooperates with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans to patrol and identify fishing vessels within the 200 mile limit of our east coast. I flew on two of these patrols in the Davis Strait of Newfoundland-Labrador.

I also had the opportunity of flying in the newly purchased Cormorant helicopter with 413 Squadron. It is proving to be a great investment by the Canadian government.

To Wing Commander Colonel Gerry Morey, the members of Swordfish Squadron and all those at CFB Greenwood who made my stay so enjoyable, I wish to express my thanks. It was a wonderful experience and I encourage all my colleagues in the House to take advantage of this worthwhile program.

HealthStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Ken Epp Canadian Alliance Elk Island, AB

Mr. Speaker, once again I have been made aware of a constituent who is having to wait for diagnostic procedures in the hospital while facing very serious medical difficulties. Because of the seriousness of the preliminary diagnosis and the necessity of prompt surgery, the X-rays, CAT scans and MRIs should be available immediately but that is not the case. Instead, there are frustrating delays.

I think we can do better in Canada. Undoubtedly the costs of providing modern medicare are higher, but the government must decide where its priorities lie.

In my opinion, fully funding health care should be way ahead of many of the waste money projects this government funds. I have said it before and I will say it again. I would much rather spend $1 billion on diagnostic equipment for our hospitals than on registering people who go duck hunting in the fall.

Youth in our SocietyStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Yvon Charbonneau Liberal Anjou—Rivière-Des-Prairies, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to express my appreciation to the young people and the representatives of the organizations that work with them in my riding, who recently took part in a round table on “Youth in our society”.

Our young people are looking to us for assistance. Our young people are perceptive. They are aware that demographic trends are not in their favour and that the family is no longer the reliable support it once was. Their motivation and their feeling of belonging to the community cannot be taken for granted.

They have high expectations of school and work. In particular, they would like community organizations to have more resources with which to complement school activities, especially for the more disadvantaged.

They would like governments to fund community organizations or public-private partnerships in order to provide enriching experiences and cooperation opportunities for young people, such as discovery courses at home or abroad.

Finally, they would like governments and municipalities to provide recreational and cultural infrastructures that meet the new needs of the young people in their neighbourhoods.

Will we be able to live up to their expectations? Can we meet the challenge they have set us?

La FrancophonieStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, last week three Canadians were honoured by France for their dedication to French language and culture.

On behalf of all francophones in Canada, I congratulate Andrée Lortie, President of la Cité collégiale, the first francophone college in Ontario and Pat Webster, founder of Canadian Parents for French, who each received France's National Order of Merit, and Alain Landry, chair of the boards of Lycée Claudel and the Alliance française, who was named an Officer of the Legion of Honour.

Unfortunately, I will not have enough time to do full justice to the projects these three individuals have carried out on behalf of and for the benefit of Canada's francophonie. Nevertheless, I can tell the House that Ms. Lortie, Ms. Webster and Mr. Landry are examples for us all: they care about their community's development; they participate in its growth; and they do so in exemplary fashion.

We offer them our congratulations and our thanks.

Holocaust Memorial DayStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Liberal Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, the unanimous adoption by the House of a bill to memorialize the Holocaust is an historic moment in the life of this Parliament and this country.

It will provide an enduring remembrance and a reminder of horrors too terrible to be believed but not too terrible to have happened, and of the universal meaning of the Holocaust, including: the dangers of a state sanctioned culture of hate; the dangers of silence and indifference in the face of evil; the complicity of the elites, la trahison des clercs; the importance of Holocaust and human rights education as an antidote to racism and hate; the moral legal imperative of bringing war criminals to justice; and the demonstration, through Raoul Wallenberg, that one person can make a difference.

The member for Charlesbourg—Jacques-Cartier is to be congratulated for introducing this bill, whose enduring legacy will be “Never Again”, not for Jews, not for anyone, not now, not ever.

AgricultureStatements By Members

October 29th, 2003 / 2:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Carol Skelton Canadian Alliance Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, SK

Mr. Speaker, Canada's grain farmers are falling victim to the weather, high input costs, high taxes and low returns, and a government that does not understand the agricultural crisis.

Many grain farmers are being forced to leave their farms just to provide for their families. One farm family in our area took six semi loads of grain to the market and the return did not pay the land taxes.

The government must do more to ensure our grain farmers continue to produce the best grain in the world. If we allow our grain industry to fail, we will lose much more than a high quality, reliable, domestic food supply. We will lose our rural communities and we will bring a long and proud agricultural history to an end.

The agriculture minister must act now to ensure the future viability of our grain industry.

Charitable DonationsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paddy Torsney Liberal Burlington, ON

Mr. Speaker, Statistics Canada reports show that Canadians donated more money than ever last year to charity, up 6% from 2001. According to our tax forms, Canadians gave an outstanding $5.8 million to charity in 2002. Canadians are compassionate citizens.

Canadian charities provide crucial support and important infrastructure in our communities. They help those less fortunate and direct aid to needy families and street youth. They improve the quality of our lives through arts and cultural programs, and they work to bring peace, security, human rights and humanitarian assistance right around the world.

However they choose to help, clearly Canadians are willing to put their money and time to back their caring attitudes. I applaud the generosity of Canadians and the Canadian public, and encourage each and every one of them to continue to contribute in whatever capacity they can. Together we will make a difference, this year and into the future.

EthicsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Monique Guay Bloc Laurentides, QC

Mr. Speaker, the way things are going, a federal subsidy will be required to build confessionals to accommodate the Liberal ministers who need to relieve their guilty consciences about their little trips down the Restigouche River.

The count has begun: there are five. The fact that five ministers in the current government have been seduced by the wealthy Irving family's gratitude is enough to shake the temple walls. Worse yet: the future prime minister received a generous $100,000 contribution from the Irvings for a leadership race that never was. Well, it is a bit clearer now why the former finance minister reduced the tax burden of the big oil and gas companies while maintaining a gasoline tax that was supposed to be only temporary.

The future prime minister, who prefers to work behind the scenes rather than act as a responsible member of the government is sending a clear message: he will not hesitate to use his authority to serve his own interests and those of his supporters instead of defending the interests of all Quebeckers and Canadians.

CIF Métal ltéeStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Gérard Binet Liberal Frontenac—Mégantic, QC

Mr. Speaker, every year during Small Business Week, the local development centre of the Amiante RCM highlights the contribution of small manufacturers to developing the economy and creating jobs in this region of mines and lakes.

Last Saturday, the award of excellence for entrepreneurship, in recognition of a small business with unparalleled investments or job creation, was awarded to CIF Métal ltée.

CIF Métal ltée is the only foundry in Quebec using permanent moulds. It uses cutting edge numerically-controlled machining centres and produces technically complex permanent moulds in cast iron, steel and graphite. The company managed to increase its production capacity and simultaneously improve its production, using important technological innovations.

I want to congratulate the owners of CIF Métal ltée for their work in fostering job creation and their contribution to the economic and social well-being of the beautiful Frontenac-Mégantic region.

Liberal Party of CanadaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Monte Solberg Canadian Alliance Medicine Hat, AB

Mr. Speaker, I pity the new Liberal leader having to craft a new cabinet out of so much dead wood.

Some of the candidates for the new cabinet went fishing without a licence. They are very knotty pine. Some are twisted like poplar and difficult to work with. Some are a birch to work with. Some are as dense as mahogany. Some have blight. Some are a blight and, in some cases, their bark is worse than their blight. All of them bend with the wind, all of them need sprucing up and all of them should leave.

In fact, it seems all the Liberal timber these days is rotten to the core. Neither paint nor varnish can fix them up. No amount of stain can cover over the flaws. They cannot be refurbished. In fact, it runs against their grain. Besides, the cabinetmaker himself, the new Liberal leader, is no different. He is just a chip off the old block or, as some might say, a ship off the old dock.

No, there is no salvaging this cabinet. May they rest in pieces.

Women EntrepreneursStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today on the occasion of the release of the report of the Prime Minister's task force on women entrepreneurs, which I had the honour to chair.

The task force was created in November 2002 to advance the contribution of women entrepreneurs to the economy. In the past year we heard from more than 1,000 women entrepreneurs across the country.

Despite being the fastest growing sector of the Canadian economy, many women entrepreneurs continue to face unique barriers and challenges and they are still not treated seriously by government departments and agencies, or financial institutions.

I would encourage all members of the House to familiarize themselves with the report. It contains a number of practical and achievable recommendations on how we as a government can give greater focus to women entrepreneurs as an important component of Canada's economic development.

I would like to thank everyone who took time to share their stories and provide recommendations on how the government can best support women's entrepreneurship, but most of all, I would like to thank our Prime Minister for his vision and support in creating the task force.

Health CareStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Norman E. Doyle Progressive Conservative St. John's East, NL

Mr. Speaker, a survey by the Centre for Research and Information on Canada states that health care is the top priority of Canadians.

Three-quarters of Canadians want the next Prime Minister to spend more on health care. I say, good luck. For 10 long years Canadians have been begging and, in some cases, even dying because of the lack of sustainable funding for health care.

The federal government cut billions of health care dollars to the provinces and as yet, has not put all of it back.

There is both the social and the fiscal deficit at the helm of our country, with one Prime Minister spending and the other one stating cuts to all spending.

How are the provinces to plan for their future spending in health care when the government offers them no basis for trust and stability?

International Day for the Eradication of PovertyStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Bloc

Paul Crête Bloc Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, on International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, I had the opportunity and privilege of witnessing how the men and women of my riding work hand in hand when faced with difficulties, in organizations such as at the Dégelis collective kitchens, Regroupement des assistés sociaux du Témiscouata, anti-poverty coalitions in Témiscouata and Rivière-du-Loup, and L'Autre Toit women's shelter.

At each of these organizations, I got a sense of the spirit that should guide governments in their essential task as distributors of wealth.

I hope this spirit will eventually permeate the action of the federal government, which forgets far too often that it is not there just to pay down its debt, but also to help the less fortunate.

There are many examples throughout Quebec and I want all Quebeckers to know that they have the Bloc Quebecois' support in their fight to eradicate poverty.

Women EntrepreneursStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Karen Redman Liberal Kitchener Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, after 11 months of consulting over 1,000 women in Canada in 21 cities, today we launched the Prime Minister's task force report on women entrepreneurs.

Supporting women in business is the right thing to do and it is the economically wise thing to do.

Today we made recommendations on how the federal government can advance the contribution of women entrepreneurs to the Canadian economy. It is important to do this.

Women entrepreneurs have grown by 8% since 1996, and that is compared to .6% by men. Since 1981 the number of women entrepreneurs has increased 208%, and the numbers continue to climb. This is in the face of unique challenges that we heard from women right across Canada that they face when they are starting and growing their enterprises.

It is more important than ever that all hon. members support the Liberal government as we continue to create opportunities for women not only today but for years to come.

Judy DarcyStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Alexa McDonough NDP Halifax, NS

Mr. Speaker, today we pay tribute to Judy Darcy who retires this week after 12 years as President of the CUPE, Canada's largest union.

Over a 30 year career, she fought tirelessly for workers' rights and inspired countless workers, especially women, to become union activists.

In 1991 she was elected CUPE national president; for many years the only woman to lead a major national union in Canada.

Under her leadership, CUPE grew to 535,000 members. She fought on the front lines for all Canadians to halt the erosion and privatization of our hospitals, schools and water systems.

Our sister, Judy Darcy, led in advancing greater diversity in the union movement and in CUPE's victory in a same sex pension case five years ago that helped pave the way for the legalization of same sex marriages.

In 1988 Judy Darcy ran as an NDP candidate against the flawed free trade deal and she was a major force in the NDP renewal process leading up to the 2003 federal convention which elected Jack Layton as the new federal leader on the move.

Fearless, indefatigable and fun loving, Judy carries--

Judy DarcyStatements By Members

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

Order, please. Oral questions. The hon. Leader of the Opposition.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the environment minister admitted violating the ethics code by accepting a significant gift from the Irvings in the company of former Governor General Roméo LeBlanc. However, after apologizing, he tried to excuse his behaviour by saying yesterday “...any obligation I have is to Mr. LeBlanc, not to the Irvings”.

Just so we can be clear, if the environment minister has no obligation to the Irvings why is he cutting a $1,500 cheque to the Irvings and not to Roméo LeBlanc?

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Victoria B.C.

Liberal

David Anderson LiberalMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the hon. Leader of the Opposition started with a totally incorrect statement. He stated that I had violated the code of conduct for ministers.

That has been shown by the decision of the ethics counsellor to be totally false and that in every respect I complied with the code. I trust the hon. member will now apologize to me and the House.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, it is the same old story. They say they will correct their behaviour but then they claim they have done absolutely nothing wrong. Why correct their behaviour if they have done nothing wrong? Nothing but contradictions.

When the government House leader stayed at the home of a wealthy advertising executive he was forced to resign as public works minister. The industry minister, while he was health minister, stayed at the lodge of a wealthy industrialist in the company of a health care lobbyist and he is allowed to keep his job. I ask the Prime Minister, what is the difference?

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the minister never resigned. He was minister of public works but I decided I would have a shuffle. He was a very good House leader and he became the House leader.

They keep playing their games but we have a nation to run. The only thing they think of is to destroy the character of members of Parliament and ministers. It is the only goal they have and that says something about them.

The members of the House on all sides are very honourable people but they try to paint members of the House as a bunch of crooks, and that reflects on their poor judgment. The people in this House represent their ridings--

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

The hon. Leader of the Opposition.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, it is kind of sad that after 40 years in public life I have to inform the Prime Minister that part of running the country is having comprehensible ethics standards and an ethics code that is actually employed.

It is unacceptable that the Minister of Industry stayed at the Irving fishing lodge. It is unacceptable that he vacationed with a health sector lobbyist when he was the Minister of Health. It is unacceptable that the Ministers of Labour, the Environment, Fisheries and Oceans, and Human Resources Development accepted gifts.

If these examples are acceptable, can the Prime Minister tell me what conflicts of interest are unacceptable?

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Human Resources Development went with a colleague from the House of Commons, Mr. Zed, who was a member here and who, like her, has a family. They met one evening at a house. This is an example of accepting hospitality, which is perfectly reasonable.

The opposition has nothing better to talk about. There are problems in this country, yet all the members across the way are doing is trying to destroy reputations and throw mud. As Mr. Pearson once said:

“Those who throw mud lose ground”.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Peter MacKay Progressive Conservative Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, NS

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister will no doubt recall his great public pronouncement in 1993 when he said:

It's time to elect politicians that serve the public rather than serve themselves.

Things sure have changed in 10 years: broken promises on the GST; free trade; helicopters; fast-tracking government jets; the gun registry; the ad scandal; Shawinigate; and, who can forget, the HRDC boondoggle, speaking of which, we now have the HRDC minister adding her name to the list of those who stayed at the Irving lodge.

When did the Prime Minister stop caring about ethics and accountability in his government?