Madam Speaker, regardless of the level of government, I think that there is a common bond of association in that we should be addressing the best interests of children.
The Divorce Act is a federal law, but the provinces do have laws that deal with family law matters. One excellent example is what is done in Alberta. There is actually a law in Alberta that the court can order mandatory counselling prior to the granting of a legal sanction of a divorce. Ninety-five per cent of the people who were ordered by the courts to go to this mandatory counselling said that afterward they were glad they made it, because they did not understand the financial consequences, the impact on their children, et cetera.
The Province of Alberta has shown that provinces that have these programs would certainly have an important contribution to make to support the principle. I agree with the member that there is provincial jurisdiction with regard to family services. Alberta has shown that it can be done within the context of current envelopes of spending so that there would be no new costs. It has shown that if we keep people out of the courts it in fact saves families from destroying themselves financially. That is also now the case in B.C. and I understand that about 15 states in the United States have the same program.
The member is quite right. The provinces have an important role to play in the lives of children.