House of Commons Hansard #146 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was infrastructure.


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 Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound.

Citizen Advisory Committees
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Gary Carr Halton, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to inform my fellow colleagues of an innovative process that I use to communicate and work directly with my constituents. They are called citizen advisory committees.

We currently have committees on the topics of health care, citizenship and immigration, seniors, rural and agriculture. These groups meet a minimum of four times a year in small groups of 10 in order to exchange real dialogue and debate on issues.

They provide me with advice and feedback on issues and legislation which I in turn take back to the caucus and ministers. In between meetings we share ideas through e-mails, letters and phone calls. This allows an ongoing dialogue and is much more effective in dealing with complex issues.

On October 15, I held an advisory group meeting on Bill C-407, an issue that has become very emotional to many of my constituents. I had the opportunity to listen and take notes on the opinions, concerns and comments of my constituents which I will then discuss with my caucus.

I would like to thank everyone who came out to this meeting and thank all those who have taken the time to volunteer on the advisory committees. Their time, work and comments are very much appreciated.

Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Lynne Yelich Blackstrap, SK

Mr. Speaker, the plight of Canadian farmers is becoming increasingly desperate as they face grim financial realities constantly.

Walter Klinger, a farmer from Jansen, Saskatchewan, recently wrote me a letter describing the situation in his own words:

Western Canadian farmers are experiencing the lowest commodities prices, related to the highest input costs in history. This is not only a disgrace for Canadian farmers, it is an outright demoralizing issue.

The government's response to this current crisis is only adding to the grief. To quote Mr. Klinger again:

In other grain producing countries, their respective governments ensure that there are sufficient support programs in place for their producers. Our farmers feed the public out of their own pockets.

The Liberal CAIS program is so complicated and ineffective that you need to pay your accountant upwards of $400 to $500 to file your application, only to learn that you don't qualify.

Clearly, this government's response to the agriculture crisis has failed. It is now time for a government that will implement agriculture policies that actually and really work.

Guelph Human Resource Centre
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Brenda Chamberlain Guelph, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House to recognize the Guelph Human Resource Centre of Canada for students and the very successful summer they had. This year, the Guelph Human Resource Centre posted 706 positions, a 21% increase from 2004. This means that in 2005 the centre helped more employers meet their staffing needs and helped more students find summer jobs.

Some 350 students also received help one on one from summer employment officers. These are individuals who help students with developing or improving a resumé, practising an interview, or help with drafting a cover letter in one on one employment advising sessions.

I wish to commend all those dedicated individuals who worked so hard this summer to help so many students in my community. I hope that they can build upon their success in 2006.

Summit of the Americas
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.


Pierre Paquette Joliette, QC

Mr. Speaker, on November 4 and 5, the fourth Summit of the Americas will be held in Mar del Plata, Argentina.

The 34 heads of state of the Americas will meet under the theme “Creating Jobs to Fight Poverty and Strengthen Democratic Governance”.

Quebec, unfortunately, was not invited to this meeting to negotiate the creation of a free trade area of the Americas. The nation of Quebec has to depend on Ottawa's goodwill to defend its rights and priorities.

As the federal Liberal government daily denies the existence of the Quebec nation, I have a hard time imagining how it will defend the interests of Quebeckers and how it will look after Quebec's needs in a context of continental integration.

The situation once again illustrates the need for a sovereign Quebec so we can defend our culture, values and interests ourselves.

Association of Women of India in Canada
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Yasmin Ratansi Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in this House today to recognize a very special organization that has made a tremendous impact on the local community in my riding of Don Valley East.

For almost 30 years, AWIC Community and Social Services has provided support to families who have just arrived in Canada. AWIC provides settlement services, employment counselling, volunteer opportunities, ESL and computer classes, as well as a number of other programs for seniors, women, children and youth.

Since its inception in 1976, AWIC has become a pillar of support for various people who need help adapting to their new surroundings. Above all, AWIC epitomizes Canada as a multicultural society that encourages its citizens to preserve and promote their cultural heritage.

Bereaved Families
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Guy Lauzon Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry, ON

Mr. Speaker, this year marks the 20th anniversary of Bereaved Families of Ontario in Cornwall, in my riding of Stormont--Dundas--South Glengarry.

This organization has helped thousands of families who have lost a loved one to cope with their loss through love, hope and determination. It currently offers a bereavement centre, a resource library, special bereavement services to children and youth, telephone support services, one on one discussions, support groups and public education services.

All these services are made possible by the dedication and generosity of volunteers, each of whom is bereaved and has received formal training. I know what good work these people do because I myself benefited greatly from their services 17 years ago.

From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank and congratulate everyone who has contributed to Bereaved Families of Ontario over the past 20 years and I welcome the Cornwall representatives who are visiting us on Parliament Hill today.

Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.


John Cannis Scarborough Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I, along with the Canada-Cyprus parliamentary friendship group, today had the opportunity and the pleasure of welcoming to the Hill His Excellency the Ambassador of Cyprus to the United States and High Commissioner of Cyprus to Canada, Mr. Evriviades, along with His Excellency the Consul General Mr. Vryonides, along with Mr. Sophocleous, the President of the Canadian Justice Committee for Cyprus.

Today these gentlemen talked to us about the Cyprus of yesterday, today and tomorrow. This nation has come a long way since the illegal invasion of July 1974. Most impressive was when they were asked, “What does Cyprus want today?” Their response was, “Cyprus doesn't want nothing, nothing more than what any civil society is asking today, that the rule of law be applied and justice and security for all civilized people”.

The time has come for a solution to the Cyprus issue.

Inverness Bronze Sculpture Gallery
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Marc Boulianne Mégantic—L'Érable, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Inverness bronze sculpture gallery is celebrating its tenth anniversary this year.

Located in the Mégantic—L'Érable region, this economuseum protects and promotes a rich heritage and pays tribute to Quebec's great sculptors.

The fame of the gallery, its exhibitions and its works helps promote the cultural, tourist and economic development of both the L'Érable region and Quebec as a whole.

On October 2, the gallery celebrated its anniversary with an exhibition of the work of some forty highly talented artists, who were present at the event and included Armand Vaillancourt, Raymond Barbeau, Pascale Archambault, Huguette Joncas, Gérard Bélanger, Hélène Labrie, Roger André Bourgeault, Marcellin Fortin, Marie-Claude Demers and Jacques Lisée.

Their enthusiastic response shows just how much support there is in the artistic community for this gallery devoted to Quebec's top sculptors.

Congratulations to the gallery. May it long flourish.

Underground Railroad
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.


Walt Lastewka St. Catharines, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House of Commons today to offer my congratulations to Reverend Daniel Rupwate and the congregation of the British Methodist Episcopal Church-Salem Chapel on the occasion of its 150th anniversary and its role in the Underground Railroad.

Two weeks of celebrations will see the congregation and community remember one of the most famous conductors, Harriet Tubman. This extraordinary woman dedicated her life to saving the lives of others. She took tremendous risks which enabled countless people to find freedom.

In the 1850s St. Catharines and the BME Church became her headquarters for the Underground Railroad. It was a centre for religious, cultural and political activity. The Underground Railroad was the network of families and people that offered their assistance, food or shelter to slaves during their escape north.

I commend the congregation and the many volunteers who have worked so hard to help us celebrate the 150th anniversary of the BME Church. It ensures that we continue to remember the spirit and the strength of Harriet Tubman and her lifetime of courageous actions.

Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.


Colin Carrie Oshawa, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada and to recognize its ongoing commitment to helping children nationwide achieve their potential.

By encouraging the development of positive relationships with peers and mentors, boys and girls clubs help children build self-esteem and social skills that last a lifetime. They provide invaluable access to enriching recreational and social programs outside of school and help foster the development of positive peer relationships, emotional health and high academic performance.

As an alumni of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada, I am proud to stand in the House today to welcome our visitors and commend this great organization for the important work it does. The many hours that the volunteers, program supervisors and staff put into ensuring a fun and safe environment where children can thrive does not go unnoticed.

On behalf of the members of the House, I applaud the dedicated work of all boys and girls clubs nationwide, particularly the Eastview Boys and Girls Club in my riding of Oshawa.

Statements By Members

November 2nd, 2005 / 2:15 p.m.


Ruby Dhalla Brampton—Springdale, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to welcome many of the chiropractors who are in Ottawa today to meet with their federal representatives. I believe these meetings will provide an ideal opportunity for many members of the House to learn about the important and integral role that chiropractic has to play in the health care arena.

As a chiropractor, I have seen first-hand the benefit of chiropractic treatment for conditions such as back pain, neck pain and headaches. With musculoskeletal conditions such as back pain, costing Canadians $16.4 billion in treatment, rehab costs and a decreasing workforce productivity, the chiropractic profession has a key role to play in addressing many of the challenges experienced in health care.

As the dynamics of health care change, it is imperative that all health care professionals work together in multidisciplinary environments to provide the highest quality of health care for all Canadians from coast to coast.

Bell Canada
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.


Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, since 1996, the Communication, Energy and Paperworkers Union has attempted to get Bell Canada to live up to its obligations to equal pay for work of equal value.

This case has been at the Human Rights Tribunal for almost 10 years and the hearing dates scheduled until 2009. Bell Canada has spent more than $35 million on a small army of lawyers to deny thousands of women working as telephone operators money they are entitled to by law.

Bell's consistent attack on women's human rights proves yet again the need for proactive federal pay equity legislation. The labour, justice and status of women ministers are all on record referring to pay equity as a fundamental human right, yet there is still no legislation to protect workers.

The NDP is calling on the Liberal government to stop forcing women to fight for decades for economic equality and introduce proactive pay equity legislation immediately.

The Standing Committee on the Status of Women has asked for legislation. Where is the legislation?

Japanese-Canadian Veterans
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.


Bev Oda Clarington—Scugog—Uxbridge, ON

Mr. Speaker, next week we will be in our ridings to observe Remembrance Day. Today I want to recognize the Japanese-Canadian veterans who served in the Canadian forces in World War I and II, as well as in the Korean war.

With the onset of the first world war, not recognized as Canadian citizens, they had to fight to even be able to volunteer for service in 1915. And again in the second world war, even while all west coast Japanese were being evacuated as enemy aliens, when they were still not recognized as citizens, they volunteered to serve in our armed forces once again.

In these wars and the Korean war, they served with distinction, dignity and valour. These men and women and all Japanese in Canada finally received the right to vote and were recognized as Canadian citizens in 1948.

The Japanese-Canadian veterans fought to be able to say proudly, “I am a part of my country. I have suffered in her struggles and gloried in her victories. I was ready when I was needed. I am Canadian”.

Sponsorship Program
Statements By Members

2:15 p.m.


Odina Desrochers Lotbinière—Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Gomery report has confirmed the magnitude of the sponsorship scandal and the political leadership that presided over this vast exercise in propaganda.

The most influential members of the Liberal Party of Canada spared no expense in trying to try to buy the conscience and affection of Quebeckers, while lining the pockets of their friends who returned the favour by doing likewise for the Liberal Party.

The sponsorship scandal is a Liberal scandal skilfully orchestrated by the mandarins of the Liberal Party of Canada. Justice Gomery made note of “the existence of a 'culture of entitlement' among political officials and bureaucrats involved with the Sponsorship Program, including the receipt of monetary and non-monetary benefits”.

The Gomery report reveals this conspiracy by the Liberal Party of Canada, which, having nothing to offer Quebec, decided to use public funds to try to buy Quebeckers. How pathetic.