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House of Commons Hansard #67 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was budget.

Topics

Canadian ForcesStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Roy H. Bailey Canadian Alliance Souris—Moose Mountain, SK

Madam Speaker, I want the 265 sailors aboard the destroyer, HMCS Iroquois , which departed Halifax Harbour for the Arabian Sea yesterday, to know that our thoughts and our prayers go with them.

Twelve years ago Canada sent other brave men and women into the gulf war to drive Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait. They knew they had a duty to perform. They went willingly and they went bravely.

When they returned from the gulf war we soon discovered that all was not well. Medical terms we had never heard of before started cropping up, such as gulf war syndrome and post-traumatic stress disorder, and appeared to be affecting many of our returning vets.

While our American allies have come a long way in helping their vets deal with gulf war syndrome and other disorders, many of our own gulf war vets say that Canada is lagging sadly behind in looking after them.

Let us give a clear message, demonstrated by our actions, that Canada will do its duty to look after the needs of our veterans after they return.

PeaceStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Monique Guay Bloc Laurentides, QC

Madame Speaker, on Thursday, primary school students from my riding marched for peace in the streets of Saint-Jérôme, to show their concern for the children of Iraq, because a socially aware school inhabits the earth.

Yesterday, I met with some of these children from La Fourmilière alternative school, who asked me to give the Prime Minister the following message:

We are six and seven year old children and we do not want to have a war. We are scared and worried. At school, the teachers teach us peaceful ways to resolve our conflicts. You know, we could teach you some. Thank you for listening to us.

These young children gave me cards and drawings to give to the Prime Minister and asked me if what they were doing was important. I told them yes and that I would make sure to pass on their messages of love and peace.

What these children did, their questions and their hope-filled eyes, moved me. May they silence the guns and open our hearts to peace.

Heritage DayStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Sarmite Bulte Liberal Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, in my riding on Sunday, February 16, I had the pleasure of co-hosting Heritage Day celebrations for the Parkdale Intercultural Association at the Parkdale Public Library.

The third Monday in February has been set aside each year by the Heritage Foundation to recognize and increase awareness of this country's diverse architectural and built heritage. This year's theme was the “Heritage of Our Town”.

We took this occasion to celebrate the diversity of our riding and at the same time to celebrate this country's diverse heritage by celebrating the diversity our rich cultures.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone and our sponsors who helped make this event a great success.

Firearms RegistryStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Dick Harris Canadian Alliance Prince George—Bulkley Valley, BC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday in the public accounts committee the member for Mississauga West, in a failing effort to somehow justify the 500% cost overrun of the government's gun registration program, accused the Auditor General of having an individual with an anti-gun control bias on her advisory board.

The disrespect shown by the member for Mississauga West toward Canada's financial watchdog is reprehensible and he should be ashamed of himself.

These actions, unfortunately, are typical of an out of control government that continually refuses to admit its failed performance in every respect.

Charles DevlinStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is with great sadness that I rise today to draw the attention of the House to the tragic death of Mr. Charles Devlin this past weekend.

Mr. Devlin, a former labour commissioner, was simply being a Good Samaritan when he intervened in a disturbance at the Villa Maria Metro Station in my riding of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine.

For this brave show of concern on behalf of his fellow citizens, Mr. Devlin was pushed to the ground where he suffered the injuries that ultimately claimed his life over the weekend.

Mr. Devlin was a victim of an incomprehensible act of violence. It is a terrible tragedy that we know could have been avoided. The message from all of this is clear: there is no place for violence in our society.

Before I close, I wish to express my deepest condolences to the wife and family of Mr. Charles Devlin, a man who clearly understood that violence leads nowhere and has no place in our society.

Canada Winter GamesStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

NDP

Yvon Godin NDP Acadie—Bathurst, NB

Mr. Speaker, Bathurst, in my riding of Acadie—Bathurst, takes great pride in co-hosting the 2003 Winter Games with Campbellton, New Brunswick.

Bathurst is in a party mood and looks it. The Chaleur region has put a great deal of effort into making sure that the hundreds of participants enjoy top quality games. The city of Bathurst is busy earning a reputation as a hospitable city like no other.

To all the athletes from all over Canada who will put their best into fulfilling their dream, we wish the best of luck. The athletes, their families and their coaches have all worked hard and made many sacrifices, and are rightly proud of themselves.

At this time, there are more than 6,000 volunteers working to make this event an unforgettable success.

In my capacity as the member for Acadie—Bathurst, I wish to express sincere thanks to all those who have had a hand in these Winter Games. They all deserve medals too, for their devoted efforts.

Canadian ForcesStatements By Members

February 25th, 2003 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

David Pratt Liberal Nepean—Carleton, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express the gratitude and admiration of Canadians to the crew of Her Majesty's Canadian ship Iroquois and her Sea King detachment who departed Nova Scotia for the Arabian Sea.

This deployment represents a significant contribution to coalition operations and demonstrates Canada's ongoing commitment to the campaign against terrorism.

HMCS Iroquois will meet up with HMCS Montreal and HMCS Winnipeg , which are currently serving in Operation Apollo, and will act as a flagship of the coalition task force 151.

Canada just recently took command of this task force which is responsible for escorting ships and intercepting vessels in the gulf area.

The deployment of the Iroquois , a destroyer with state of the art command and control and air defence capabilities, will allow us to fulfill these responsibilities even more effectively.

Since Canada joined the campaign against terrorism in October 2001, members of the Canadian Forces have distinguished themselves among our allies as a force that is professional, capable and ready to serve. I am sure that the HMCS Iroquois will further contribute to this enviable reputation.

Centenary of Hébertville-StationStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Sébastien Gagnon Bloc Lac-Saint-Jean—Saguenay, QC

Mr. Speaker, today I would like to draw to the attention of the House the fact that this year marks the hundredth birthday of the municipality of Hébertville-Station.

Anyone who has had an opportunity to meet the people there will know how determined, dynamic, courageous they are, and what joie de vivre they share. These characteristics have been brought out on a number of occasions over the years.

Their determination is what brought them through such hard times as a great fire in 1930, another in 1943, and a hurricane in 1975.

Their courage has been shown on numerous occasions, and in particular by their daring to elect as their first mayor a young man under 20, Louis-Nazaire Asselin. Perhaps that is also why they had the courage and determination to elect the two youngest MPs as their representatives here in Ottawa.

Finally, as for their joie de vivre, I invite everyone to experience that for themselves as they celebrate their centenary.

Scott Tournament of HeartsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Geoff Regan Liberal Halifax West, NS

Mr. Speaker, this weekend Halifax's Colleen Jones managed an unprecedented curling hat trick. Doing Bluenosers everywhere proud, Colleen and her Mayflower rink won their fifth Scott Tournament of Hearts, their third victory in a row.

Let me quote from the Halifax Herald earlier this week:

...At this point, the Jones team has little to prove. They are only the second team to three-peat in the championship's history and have been stellar representatives for this province and this country. Their curling prowess and talented determination is unmatched in the record books of women's curling.

While Men With Brooms might be a good movie, Colleen Jones and her rink have proven that curlers from Nova Scotia sweep the competition away. I congratulate them.

Senior CitizensStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Elsie Wayne Progressive Conservative Saint John, NB

Mr. Speaker, I rise today in the House to speak on behalf of the seniors of Canada.

In the budget that was brought down last week there was no mention whatsoever of the seniors in Canada. Our phones have been ringing off the wall because the seniors in this country are going to be the largest percentage of our population in just a few years.

I was stopped on the street this past weekend in my riding of Saint John, New Brunswick, by a senior who said “Elsie, I have to have some help. They have once again increased my rent and I cannot afford this because my Canada pension is not being increased”. This senior also said that housing was needed.

CMHC used to build housing for the seniors. It is not there anymore.

There is absolutely nothing for the seniors in this budget and the government should be ashamed of itself.

PeaceStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

André Harvey Liberal Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, students from École polyvalente Charles-Gravel and École Dominique-Racine, as well as representatives of Bleuets pour la paix, came to my office to deliver petitions for peace. These petitions contain several thousand signatures.

We were able to discuss how important it is for the current negotiations and the work of the United Nations weapons inspectors to be successful. We reached the obvious conclusion that if there is to be peace, both parties must want it.

So, I will have an opportunity to present the Prime Minister with the numerous petitions that I received.

JusticeStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

James Moore Canadian Alliance Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, a student on her way to middle school in Port Moody was grabbed by an attacker. Two masked men with bear spray and a gun held up a McDonald's in Coquitlam. An 18 year old Port Moody woman may have lost the vision in one eye after an assault. All these incidents happened in the past six days.

The menace of street racing, the horror of the Pickton pig farm, the terrible murder of Breann Voth, and the beating and shooting death of a 17 year old student have all taken their toll on the Tri-Cities.

Coquitlam RCMP and Port Moody Police resources are being stretched and exhausted. Many minor offences cannot be properly addressed because major crime investigations are swallowing their budgets. The Tri-Cities have one of the lowest officer to citizen ratios in all of Canada and this reality is not good enough. The City of Coquitlam is spending $17 million for police protection and is not getting the support it needs from the government.

The Liberals found $114 million for a new official languages program and $172 million for an aboriginal cultures centre, but not a single new dime to help fight crime in the Tri-Cities. The Liberals should be ashamed of their warped priorities and for jeopardizing the safety of my constituents.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I want to ask questions about the operation of the government's ethics code and so-called blind trusts.

The former finance minister's company was caught and charged with dumping oil into Halifax harbour last March. The former finance minister then received special briefings on the incident. Under the ethics code, why did this incident with Canada Steamship Lines require the direct knowledge or involvement of the former finance minister?

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, under the guidelines, the Registrar General has some authority to inform the person of some incident and in the judgment of the Registrar General, as it says under section 6 of the agreement, “as may otherwise be allowed by the Assistant Deputy Registrar General”, who in that case felt that it was his duty to inform the minister.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, the former finance minister's company was charged last March. In November, CSL reached a plea bargain arrangement with the government. We now know that the former minister was briefed twice during this period.

Under the ethics code, why was the public not informed of this as openly as the minister was?

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the arrangement is made between the minister or office holder with the Registrar General who administers these guidelines. It is a private matter between the two of them. We call it a blind arrangement because we do not want to make it public. If it were to be public it would not be blind.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, if the minister could have been told about these charges against his company the public should have been told as well.

To recap, the former finance minister knew about the dumping charge in March, he was briefed on it twice and settled for a guilty plea in November. The former finance minister's relationship with his company is supposed to be arm's length, not hands on. How can Canadians be assured that for these six months the former minister did not have input into the final settlement?

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I will just say it again. There are guidelines that all ministers are requested to follow. I am not privy to any other information.

There is one thing that is clear. When Canada Steamship Lines was mentioned, everybody who knew a bit about the member for LaSalle—Émard and the company knew that he was the owner, so it was public that it was his company. It was not a company unknown to the Canadian public.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant Hill Canadian Alliance Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister keeps saying that this arrangement with the former finance minister was a blind management agreement. That is not accurate. I could say it much stronger, but it is certainly not accurate.

I have that agreement with me and it says “supervisory agreement”. I want the Prime Minister to tell all Canadians again today, as I asked him yesterday, that this is the only minister who has this agreement, yes or no.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I have said many times, and it is known, that two other ministers have the same agreement. It is known. We gave the names last week. It is within the guidelines and the rules that were established before we formed the government. These rules existed under the previous administration.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Grant Hill Canadian Alliance Macleod, AB

Mr. Speaker, I would like to say it even stronger: that is even more incorrect. I have the agreement that the foreign minister has and that agreement is truly a blind management agreement. I have an agreement of another cabinet minister and it is truly a blind management agreement.

This agreement is a supervisory agreement and I would like to table it in the House so that all Canadians could see it. This is not a blind management agreement.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

The Speaker

I do not know whether there is a question, but if the right hon. Prime Minister wishes to comment, that is fine.

EthicsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the Registrar General is the officer who was managing these files. In February 1994 he said to me, in a letter, that the minister of finance of that day had complied with all the requirements of the guidelines that existed in the previous administration and were the same for my administration. He said that he was satisfied with the agreement, so I had no reason not to believe that the agreement was proper.

IraqOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, two opposing initiatives were taken at the Security Council, one by the United States, Great Britain and Spain, who are for the adoption of a resolution geared towards war and, another by France, Germany, Russia, and supported by China, that favours strengthening the United Nations inspections program.

Will the Prime Minister tell us which initiative Canada supports, the resolution based on a logic of war, or the memorandum based on a logic of peace?

IraqOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the goal of resolution 1441 is to achieve peace. It is to ensure that Saddam Hussein does what is necessary so that it is not necessary to force him to comply with resolution 1441.

A debate is under way at the United Nations. We will follow the situation. There will be many stakeholders and many suggestions. I imagine there will not be a vote before the second week of March. At this time, everyone is working very hard to try to find a solution geared towards peace, not war.