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House of Commons Hansard #90 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was sars.

Topics

FisheriesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

West Nova Nova Scotia

Liberal

Robert Thibault LiberalMinister of Fisheries and Oceans

Mr. Speaker, I regret that the member did not get a chance to pose his question. However I would like to assure him that I fully understand the gravity of the situation.

It is not likely that we would make a decision to close a fishery so important to so many communities, particularly in Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec. That is why we took the additional measures, as mentioned by the all party committee, by the eminent panel on seals and by the FRCC, to reduce predation, to increase the feedstock, to remove dragging from critical areas, to continue the index fishery and do basic research.

Persons with DisabilitiesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Bill Casey Progressive Conservative Cumberland—Colchester, NS

Mr. Speaker, yesterday on Cross Country Checkup the former minister of finance told all Canadians that the government policies dealing with people with disabilities were incoherent, inconsistent and confusing. He said that when he is the prime minister he will fix it but that it should be fixed now.

Will the government take the advice of the former minister of finance and fix those programs now, and make them consistent among HRDC, Revenue Canada, Veterans Affairs and Health Canada, instead of the hodgepodge we have now?

Persons with DisabilitiesOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Brant Ontario

Liberal

Jane Stewart LiberalMinister of Human Resources Development

Mr. Speaker, the government remains committed to working with Canadians with disabilities to ensure that they have full access to the programs of this country as citizens.

I want to applaud the government, in its most recent budget, for making significant changes that recognize, for example, that it is more expensive for parents to raise children with disabilities and providing additional support to them through specific supplements to the national child benefit.

The hon. member can rest assured that the government is working across departments in support of Canadians with disabilities and will continue to do that.

Regulatory ReformOral Question Period

2:55 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Gurmant Grewal Canadian Alliance Surrey Central, BC

Mr. Speaker, in the last quarter century Canadians have witnessed an unprecedented growth in red tape, with 100,000 new regulations. That is an average of 16 a day. It is estimated to cost businesses $103 billion, which they then pass on to consumers.

The government is paying lip service to regulatory reform with the external advisory committee on smart regulations but there is scant promise of a serious review of the many thousands of existing out-dated, ill-considered, overlapping regulations.

When will the government start cutting the red tape and allow businesses the freedom to prosper?

Regulatory ReformOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I am sorry if the hon. member is not aware of this but the government announced, through its excellent throne speech some months ago, that there would be regulatory reform: the smart regulation initiative. I answered a question on the floor of the House only a few weeks back announcing the chairmanship of that initiative. The other members will be announced very shortly.

The process has already started and of course it is going to work just fine, as it does when the government does all the things that it does so well.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

I draw the attention of hon. members to the presence in the gallery of Mr. Jack David, U.S. co-chair of the Canada-United States Permanent Joint Board on Defence, an organization whose Canadian co-chair is the hon. member for Brossard—La Prairie.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, with your leave, I would like to point out the presence in the gallery of a member of the National Assembly of France, Mr. Lenoir, who is on an official visit to Canada.

Presence in GalleryOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Points of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn Progressive Conservative St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw to your attention the word used today by the Minister of Health in response to a question asked by the right hon. member for Calgary Centre.

The minister used the word “fabrication”. In fact she said that what the member said was a fabrication. I would refer you to Beauchesne's at page 149, Citation No. 492 which states:

The following expressions are a partial listing of expressions which have caused intervention on the part of the Chair, as listed in the Index....

One of the words listed, Mr. Speaker, is the word “fabrication”, and I await your direction.

Points of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Glengarry—Prescott—Russell Ontario

Liberal

Don Boudria LiberalMinister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member should know that in Beauchesne's list there are a number of expressions that have been consistently ruled unparliamentary and we know what those are. A number of others have been consistently ruled as being parliamentary. Others have been the subject of the Speaker's interpretation depending on the tone, the way in which they were raised and whether they caused disorder in the House.

That has been consistently the way Mr. Speaker has interpreted these things in the past. I support the way in which Mr. Speaker has interpreted the matter today.

Points of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

Loyola Hearn Progressive Conservative St. John's West, NL

Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. House leader has made my point. It was the way it was used that should be considered by you. Seeing as it is a word that is in Beauchesne's list, I would ask the hon. minister to do the right and proper thing, and stand and withdraw the word that she used.

Points of OrderOral Question Period

3 p.m.

The Speaker

The Chair heard the question raised by the right hon. member for Calgary Centre and the long number of adjectives used by the hon. Minister of Health in detailing her view of the question.

I did not think anything she said transgressed the rule but since the hon. member for St. John's West has drawn the Chair's attention to the citation referred to in Beauchesne's, with which the Chair is quite familiar, and I noted, as the government House leader noted, it was from the section which caused intervention from the Chair, so it is some sort of a word that can swing both ways, if the hon. member knows what I mean.

I will examine the matter very carefully and get back to the House if necessary to deal with the matter further. However it did not strike me at the time that there had been a breach of the Standing Orders. I take things at first impression and away we go, but I will look at it again. I assure the hon. member that I will review the matter.

Points of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

John Reynolds Canadian Alliance West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, BC

Mr. Speaker, this is the second point of order in recent weeks regarding the inaccuracy of Hansard , and once again it concerns the Hansard of April 1.

There is a discrepancy in the recorded Hansard regarding the vote on Bill C-20, an act to amend the Criminal Code. The vote was conducted using the application method of voting. The whip of the Progressive Conservative Party indicated that his party would be voting against the bill. However the Progressive Conservative caucus was recorded as voting for the bill in the actual recorded division that followed.

It is not clear how the Conservatives voted but I would think that this error taints the accuracy of the position of all parties in the House. The accuracy of our records is very important. The public needs to know why and how members voted.

I would ask the Speaker to check into this and make sure that we get accuracy so that people will know how we all voted on this very important issue in the House of Commons.

Points of OrderOral Question Period

3:05 p.m.

The Speaker

I thank the hon. member for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast for his assistance in this matter. As he knows, when votes are applied, particularly on evenings when we have a large number of votes, sometimes things can get confused.

He may have uncovered a confusion here that arose and an error that was made and, if so, the Chair will be diligent in ensuring the matter is corrected because I agree with him completely. We do want our records to be completely accurate in the House. I am glad that the hon. member for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast shares the Chair's enthusiasm in that regard.

Grain Handling and Transportation SystemRoutine Proceedings

3:05 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 32(2) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the report entitled “Monitoring the Canadian Grain Handling and Transportation System Annual Report 2001-02 Crop Year”.

Government Response to PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:05 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 17 petitions.

International Transfer of Offenders ActRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Malpeque P.E.I.

Liberal

Wayne Easter LiberalSolicitor General of Canada

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-33, an act to implement treaties and administrative arrangements on the international transfer of persons found guilty of criminal offences.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Committees of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

3:05 p.m.

Liberal

Walt Lastewka Liberal St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present, in both official languages, the third report of the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology entitled “Opening Canadian Communications to the World”.

A modern telecommunications infrastructure and a robust telecommunications sector are essential to Canada's economic success in the global networking economy. The committee believes that implementing the four recommendations contained in this report will help to improve investment and innovation in the Canadian telecommunications sector, provide better services to consumers and ensure that the government's telecommunications policy goals are achieved.

I wish to thank the individuals and organizations who took part in our hearings, the research staff of the Library of Parliament, particularly Dr. Lalita Acharya, Geoffrey Kieley and Dan Shaw, and the members for their invaluable contribution during the discussions.

Canada Elections ActRoutine Proceedings

April 28th, 2003 / 3:05 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Ted White Canadian Alliance North Vancouver, BC

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-433, an act to amend the Canada Elections Act (appointment of election officers).

Mr. Speaker, they say that if at first you do not succeed, try, try, try again, so I am trying again with a bill which is supported by the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada. It would amend the Canada Elections Act to allow the Chief Electoral Officer to appoint returning officers across Canada.

Returning officers at present are appointed by the Prime Minister. At a recent committee hearing the Chief Electoral Officer indicated that about 11 of those are non-performers which he cannot do anything about. He cannot fire them. He cannot get rid of them. We are fed up with a situation like that. By giving the Chief Electoral Officer the power to appoint people to the position of returning officer, we would overcome that terrible patronage association with the Prime Minister.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

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

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present a large petition from Saskatchewan. Once again people are asking that the government look at the petition. They are asking Parliament not to pass Bill C-250 and make it law in Canada.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Werner Schmidt Canadian Alliance Kelowna, BC

Mr. Speaker, the petitioners on whose behalf I present this petition suggest that non-embryonic stem cells which are also known as adult stem cells have shown significant research progress without the immune rejection or ethical problems associated with embryonic stem cells. Therefore the petitioners call upon Parliament to focus its legislative support on adult stem cell research to find the cures and therapies necessary to treat illness and disease of suffering Canadians.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions to present today. The first is on the issue of child pornography. The petitioners from my riding of Mississauga South draw to the attention of the House that the creation and use of child pornography is condemned by the clear majority of Canadians and that the courts have not applied the current child pornography law in a way that makes it clear that such exploitation of children will always be met with swift punishment.

The petitioners therefore call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to ensure that all materials which promote or glorify pedophilia or sado-masochistic activities involving children are outlawed.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the second petition, again from my riding of Mississauga South, is on the subject matter of the definition of marriage.

The petitioners point out that the majority of Canadians believe that the fundamental matters of social policy should be decided by elected members of Parliament and not by an unelected judiciary. They therefore call upon Parliament to use all possible legislative and administrative means, including invoking section 33 of the charter, being the notwithstanding clause, to preserve and protect the current definition of marriage as between one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others.

PetitionsRoutine Proceedings

3:10 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Liberal Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the final petition is on the issue of stem cells.

The petitioners draw to the attention of the House that Canadians support ethical stem cell research which has already shown encouraging potential to provide cures and therapies for the illnesses and diseases of Canadians. Their concern is where the stem cells come from. They note that non-embryonic stem cells, which are also known as adult stem cells, have shown significant research progress without the immune rejection or ethical problems associated with embryonic stem cells.

The petitioners therefore call upon Parliament to pursue legislative support for adult stem cell research to find those cures and therapies necessary for the illnesses and diseases of Canadians.