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House of Commons Hansard #115 of the 37th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was parties.

Topics

Millennium Excellence AwardStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Paddy Torsney Liberal Burlington, ON

Mr. Speaker, each year the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation provides over 900 scholarships to outstanding students across Canada.

This year Burlington students Brenna Dickison, Jayde Duncombe, Shirine Usmani, Amir Ali and Andrea Gulyas won millennium excellence awards. These bright young Canadians are among the most promising of our students entering post-secondary institutions this fall.

Since its creation in 1998, the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation has recognized the achievements of Canada's top students, awarding some 3,600 millennium excellence awards. While these awards help these outstanding young people pursue their post-secondary education, at the same time the foundation is helping to ensure a bright future for Canada and Canadians.

I ask my colleagues to join me in congratulating all the recipients of this scholarship across Canada and especially Brenna, Jayde, Shirine, Amir, and Andrea from Burlington.

Way to go. Bonne chance les étudiantes.

Relay for LifeStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Betty Hinton Canadian Alliance Kamloops, Thompson And Highland Valleys, BC

Mr. Speaker, on June 7 I once again participated in the Relay for Life with teams of people who want to help beat cancer.

The Highland Valley Hoffers team, of which I am a proud member, raised nearly $18,000. I want to thank my colleagues in the Canadian Alliance caucus for contributing 1,000 of those dollars. In total, the relay teams raised an impressive $135,000.

This event would not be possible without the hundreds of volunteers who organize the event and the generous sponsorship of the Kamloops business community.

Personally, I walk in memory of my sister Doreen Buss and my girlfriend Laurie Benteau who lost their battle with cancer. I walk also for Ron Shindell, a neighbour I love, who will win his battle and join my colleague from Saskatoon--Rosetown--Biggar as a survivor.

Cancer can be beaten, and the people of Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys will lead the way.

Millennium Excellence AwardStatements By Members

June 10th, 2003 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Liberal Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is with great pleasure, and on behalf of my fellow citizens, that I salute the two winners from the riding of Hull—Aylmer who have received Excellence Awards. They are Katherine Charbonneau, a student at the Collège de l'Outaouais, and Sarah Lawrence, a student at Heritage College.

The Excellence Awards identify, support and encourage young men and women who stand out in terms of their academic achievement, leadership, and community involvement.

The Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation was created by an act of Parliament and, through it, all Canadians invest in the future leaders of our country and express their confidence in them.

These young women are undoubtedly among the most promising in the school system. My hearty congratulations to the winners in my riding; I wish them great success in their studies.

FisheriesStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Progressive Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, Canada was a world leader in the fight for the 200 mile limit, but the 200 mile limit by itself has not been enough to stop the rapid decline in world fisheries resources. The recent cod fishery closure in eastern Canada, with all of its social and economic hardship, is the most recent example.

The current international fisheries conservation regime is long on promises but short on action. Something needs to be done. It is time for Canada to again take a leading role in developing a more comprehensive and enforceable fisheries conservation program on the international scene.

A nation is known not by the challenges it encounters but by the challenges it has the courage to take up. A hungry world is crying out for leadership on fisheries conservation while there are still some fish left. It is time for Canada to take up the challenge and answer the call.

Maison Grandi OseStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Marcel Gagnon Bloc Champlain, QC

Mr. Speaker, today, I am pleased to draw the attention of the House to the contribution of a organization in my riding to the community.

The Maison Grandi Ose in greater Trois-Rivières, Cap-de-la-Madeleine sector, is a leader in providing assistance to families of handicapped children. In addition to providing a recreation centre to handicapped children and their families, this organization offers respite to families who need a break.

This charitable organization par excellence—and it is very community-minded—is the first of its kind in Quebec and Canada.

I want to pay tribute to Dorothée Leblanc and all her associates who give the word dedication its true meaning. Thanks to Ms. Leblanc and her generous team for the love they provide to those in need.

At a time when all we hear about is bad news and war, Ms. Leblanc is a breath of fresh air, and she makes the world a better place. I wish her and the Maison Grandi Ose all the best.

Foreign AffairsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Irwin Cotler Liberal Mount Royal, QC

Mr. Speaker, on Friday, May 30, the convoy of Myanmar's democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi was attacked, members of her entourage were killed and wounded, and 19 colleagues, along with her, were arrested. She is being held by the military junta in protective custody, though it appears that the only group from which she requires protection is the junta itself.

Indeed, as I speak, all universities have been suspended, all NLD Party members have been placed under house arrest, and the country's fragile pro-democracy movement is under siege.

We need to seek the immediate release of Aung San Suu Kyi, the freedom of all prisoners of conscience, the reopening of the universities and the promotion of this nascent democracy.

To that end, we should propose that the issue be raised at the UN Security Council, lobby Asian regional members later this month to take a stronger stand on Burma, give political and financial support to civil society groups, and seek the unilateral and multilateral enactment of targeted sanctions.

I thank the Minister of Foreign Affairs for his strong statement in this regard.

JusticeStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Bev Desjarlais NDP Churchill, MB

Mr. Speaker, I rise to call on the Liberal government to finally introduce corporate criminal liability legislation. Eight months ago, following a unanimous justice committee recommendation, the Minister of Justice assured the House that legislation would be tabled this spring.

May 9 was the eleventh anniversary of the killing of 26 miners at Westray. The Liberal government has for more than a decade failed to ensure justice for the miners and their families.

Canadian workers are still being killed by unsafe conditions created by employers who value cutting corners and increasing their profits over the lives of their workers. A slap on the wrist for a corporation that allows the killing of a worker is not justice.

When will the Liberal government honour its commitment to the families of the Westray victims and to the steelworkers and all the others who have fought for justice to be done?

Where is the legislation that the government assured Parliament would be tabled this spring? How many more workers must be killed before the Liberal government stops protecting corporate killers and tables the legislation it promised?

Hugo BoninStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Guy Carignan Liberal Québec East, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to tell the House that the Laurentian neighbourhood of Quebec City has given Hugo Bonin, of Ancienne-Lorette, the Mérite municipal 2003 citizen award.

Mr. Bonin is a founding member of the Association des gens d'affaires of Ancienne-Lorette. This association was created to bring small local businesses together to better resist pressure from superstores opening nearby.

The overall goal of the association is to sustain and promote local services, the sense of community and economic development for small and medium sized businesses. It also seeks to contribute to the development of the community and social life.

As a result, the association identified a certain number of projects it wants to implement, such as developing a multigenerational park, constructing a new building for the Maison des Jeunes, improving the city woodlands, restoring the parish church's Casavant organ, renovating La Fenière theatre and illuminating the magnificent church that was consecrated in 1910.

We congratulate Mr. Bonin and wish him continued success in his work.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, for weeks we have been urging the government to address the crisis in the beef industry. Industry has proposed a modest compensation package targeted at feedlots. The western premiers have agreed to pursue this kind of package. All we are doing now is waiting for the Prime Minister to get interested.

I understand the Prime Minister is supposed to have spoken by telephone with the western premiers today. Could he tell us about that conversation and can he commit the federal government to get involved in this compensation package?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I have not yet talked with the premier of British Columbia. I am supposed to talk with him later on this afternoon. We know that it is a very important and urgent problem and we are working diligently. We would like to collaborate with the provinces to deal with this crisis, because we both have responsibilities in the matter.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we had the time this morning to start shoving Bill C-24 through the House. I wish we had the same urgency for beef farmers as we do for the Liberal Party coffers.

The compensation that will be required will be a lot less if we get the borders open. We were told by the United States that when the science was complete the border would be open. The science is now complete, but the border remains closed. Has the Prime Minister yet called the president to get the criteria we will need to get the border with the United States open for our beef products?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, when I met the president in Europe I mentioned this problem, informing him that we had one cow that had been affected. At that time we were waiting for the report from the scientists who came to Canada and who have issued their report today. The Minister of Agriculture has been in daily talks with his counterpart in the United States. We hope we will make progress on that, but it is up to the American administration to decide. The Minister of Agriculture has worked with great diligence on this file since the beginning.

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Canadian Alliance

Stephen Harper Canadian AllianceLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I am glad the president has had some conversation, but now that the science is complete I would really urge the Prime Minister to get on the phone and deal with this leader to leader for the sake of our industry.

The longer the border remains closed, the greater the jeopardy that this will place our industry under and the greater the damage to our long term market share in the United States. Has the government considered and is it developing a package to promote and market Canadian beef products in the United States and abroad?

AgricultureOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Prince Edward—Hastings Ontario

Liberal

Lyle Vanclief LiberalMinister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Mr. Speaker, just as soon as this happened we started working with our embassies and the industry, with the Beef Export Federation, with all of our embassies in the countries in which we trade beef, informing them of the situation and keeping them up to date as we went along. That science is now complete. We will continue to work with them and all of those in the export business in order to get all of our markets open as quickly as we possibly can.

HealthOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Merrifield Canadian Alliance Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, it appears that SARS has now infected 12 patients from a clinic east of Toronto. Meanwhile a North Carolina man has been diagnosed with SARS after a trip last month to Toronto. He flew back to North Carolina in mid-May.

The WHO recommended specific screening measures and the minister promised to implement them. Why were these measures not in place when this man flew out of Toronto?

HealthOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, as I have indicated in the House as recently as last week, our measures for both inbound and outbound are now in place.

Let me indicate to the hon. member that based on our information and investigations to date there was no indication when the individual left Toronto for North Carolina that he had any symptoms that would have been detected in relation to SARS. Therefore I suggest again that the hon. member stop trying to mislead the Canadian public and actually work with us to deal with this public health challenge in a responsible way.

HealthOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Canadian Alliance

Rob Merrifield Canadian Alliance Yellowhead, AB

Mr. Speaker, how would the minister know, when the measures were not in place when he left?

The WHO uses three criteria in issuing a travel advisory. We are vulnerable on the first two, which are the numbers and the local transmission. Now we are exporting SARS again. We know the economic disaster of a travel advisory. Given these events, how is the minister going to prevent another travel advisory?

HealthOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Edmonton West Alberta

Liberal

Anne McLellan LiberalMinister of Health

Mr. Speaker, my officials are in constant contact with the WHO. We know, obviously, that there are three criteria, as do public health officials in Ontario, and we continue to inform WHO officials about the situation here in Canada.

Let me reassure the hon. member that we have procedures in place that the WHO is fully aware of in relation to both inbound and outbound passengers. I go back again to the point that on the basis of our medical knowledge at this time, the individual he is referring to who returned to North Carolina showed no symptoms of SARS until long after he had returned to North Carolina.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, two years ago, the Prime Minister's ethics counsellor concluded that Alfonso Gagliano did not extend preferential treatment to his son's employer. Now we hear that Howard Wilson cleared Alfonso Gagliano, the Prime Minister's lieutenant in Quebec, without even auditing the books.

Will the Prime Minister admit that Howard Wilson's real mandate was to protect Alfonso Gagliano, to clear him at all cost, as he did for the Prime Minister, in the midst of an election campaign, in the Auberge Grand-Mère affair?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Wilson has a very difficult job to do, which he has been performing very well for the past nine years. It was at Mr. Gagliano's request that he looked into the matter. He concluded that there was no conflict of interest. It is because the then minister requested it that he investigated and reported on the matter. I have nothing to add.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, Howard Wilson is doing a very good job, which is to clear any member of the government at all cost. I can understand why the Prime Minister would be proud of him.

The Prime Minister can try as he might to distance himself from this issue, the fact remains that Alfonso Gagliano was his right-hand man and was totally devoted to his employer, saying, “He's the boss. I served the way he wanted me to serve”. He did exactly what the Prime Minister wanted him to do. Alfonso Gagliano took his orders from the Prime Minister.

Will the Prime Minister admit that the reason he is clinging to the bogus advice of this so-called ethics counsellor is to protect himself and not have his reputation tarnished just weeks from his retirement?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:20 p.m.

Saint-Maurice Québec

Liberal

Jean Chrétien LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the question has been answered. I will repeat that an investigation was initiated at Mr. Gagliano's request, and that it has been carried out. Previously, there was no ethics counsellor. Until then, there had been no one to refer such matters to. This is an innovation by this government, one which has been most useful. We have now moved on to the next stage. A bill has been introduced to improve the situation. The hon. member should recognize that the degree of ethics now found in our institutions is the result of this government's initiative.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Lanctôt Bloc Châteauguay, QC

Mr. Speaker, throughout the sponsorship scandal, the government used the ethics counsellor as one of its main defences to cover up its involvement and avoid launching a public inquiry into a member of the government at the time, Alfonso Gagliano.

Since Alfonso Gagliano was the Prime Minister's right-hand man in Quebec, is it not logical to conclude that the government used the ethics counsellor as a front to protect the Prime Minister?

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Public Works and Government Services

Mr. Speaker, flatly, no.

Government ContractsOral Question Period

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Lanctôt Bloc Châteauguay, QC

Mr. Speaker, former minister Gagliano confirmed that he did the work he was asked to do with respect to the sponsorships.

Is that not a damning revelation about the Prime Minister, from whom Alfonso Gagliano took his orders, and does that not explain why the government, in a panic, used the ethics counsellor to cover up an operation that has all the makings of a very serious conflict of interest?