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House of Commons Hansard #110 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was producers.

Topics

SupplyGovernment Orders

1:55 p.m.

NDP

Tony Martin NDP Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the member. Given that we are looking at a national strategy that includes a big chunk in terms of prevention, and recognizing, as the member said, that Quebec does a lot of good for its people, it always surprises me that Quebec would not be interested in sharing that with the rest of the country.

Given the nature of the place in which we all serve, and a federal national government to serve all the people of Canada, given the fact that we know in terms of prevention of cancer that for the air we breathe and the water we drink there are no boundaries, why she would not be supportive of a strategy that would help all people in Canada live a healthy life and not get cancer? Why would we not want to support that kind of initiative?

SupplyGovernment Orders

1:55 p.m.

Bloc

Nicole Demers Bloc Laval, QC

Mr. Speaker, of course I want everyone to live as healthy a life as possible. I want all Canadians and Quebeckers to receive as many services as possible. Nonetheless, again, it is not by accepting the federal government's interference into provincial and territorial responsibilities that we will achieve this result. It is out of the question.

I would say to my colleague that if he wanted to see what is happening in Quebec and look at the programs we have, then he can. Hundreds of people come every year to study our programs because they think they are the best. If my colleague wants to do the same, he is welcome.

I am sure my colleagues at the National Assembly will welcome him kindly. They will show him all the programs we have. Do not worry; we are prepared to share our knowledge and know-how with all Canadians because we are a nation that likes Canada, despite what anyone may say.

Dartmouth General HospitalStatements By Members

1:55 p.m.

Liberal

Michael John Savage Liberal Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, this past weekend in my riding the 20th anniversary of the annual lobster dinner and auction for the Dartmouth General Hospital was held.

The event, which is organized by the hospital foundation, attracted over 800 people and is made possible by the hard work of the volunteers and the generous supporters of the Dartmouth community.

Twenty years ago, at the first dinner, $16,000 was raised and this year the foundation raised in excess of $100,000, all for the benefit of patients and the Dartmouth General Hospital, one of Canada's finest community hospitals.

The foundation has undertaken a new campaign to fund a new CT scanner which is urgently needed to replace the hospital's current one. This new scanner is state of the art technology and will be used to diagnose a number of diseases and conditions.

The hospital has one of the best emergency facilities in eastern Canada under the able leadership of Dr. Todd Howlett. The Dartmouth General Hospital is an example of community based medicine at its best. It was built due to community involvement and continues to be an integral part of the Dartmouth—Cole Harbour community.

I congratulate all the professionals at the hospital--

Dartmouth General HospitalStatements By Members

2 p.m.

The Deputy Speaker

The hon. member for Vegreville—Wainwright.

National Spelling BeeStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Leon Benoit Conservative Vegreville—Wainwright, AB

Mr. Speaker, last month Finola Hackett, a determined young lady from my riding of Vegreville—Wainwright, won the first ever CanWest CanSpell National Spelling Bee, a contest that began in January with more than 80,000 students.

As well as being the first to have her name carved into the CanSpell cup, Finola walked away with a $10,000 scholarship and a spot in the prestigious 78th annual Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. This was a tremendous accomplishment.

Millions of children worldwide participated in the local spelling bees in hopes of reaching the level that only Finola and 273 spelling champions were able to achieve.

Then Finola, at the age of 13 years, showed great poise and knowledge last Thursday and made all of Canada proud by placing 11th overall in Washington.

I am very proud of Finola, her parents, her teachers and all who helped shape her success.

I say way to go to Finola. She has done Tofield, Alberta and Canada proud.

Clean Air DayStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, June 8 is Clean Air Day. It is part of Canadian Environment Week which promotes activities that help conserve and protect our environment. Clean Air Day specifically tries to raise awareness on air pollution and climate change.

It is important that we dedicate ourselves to work to improve air quality in order to create a cleaner and healthier environment for ourselves and for generations to come. Air pollution is particularly harmful to young children, the elderly and those with respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.

As a member from the city of Toronto, a city that continually has to deal with air pollution, I believe it is essential that we raise awareness on environmental issues, such as clean air, in order to protect our planet for generations to come.

Maison Claire-FontaineStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Marcel Gagnon Bloc Saint-Maurice—Champlain, QC

For the third year in a row, La Maison Claire-Fontaine, a B&B in La Tuque, has been named best in its region in the Grands Prix du tourisme québécois.

This B&B fits perfectly into the tradition of Haute-Mauricie, the birthplace of Félix Leclerc. Haut-Saint-Maurice is a wondrous part of the country, striking in its vastness, its natural resources such as the Saint-Maurice river, and its recreational and tourism potential.

This magnificent residence, classified “four suns”, was built in 1917. Many guests have praised the personalized hospitality of owners Marie-Josée Hébert and Eddy Georges, which has added to the tourism reputation of the region and fuelled the pride of those who live there.

Congratulations to Marie-Josée and Eddy.

Cynthia MathieuStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to extend my congratulations to Cynthia Mathieu, recipient of a silver certificate in the Duke of Edinburgh's award program Young Canadians Challenge.

Recipients have met personal challenges in four areas: community service, adventurous journey, physical recreation and skills.

This young resident of Fabreville in the riding of Laval—Les Îles earned most of her award within Squadron 687, where she provides administrative services and teaches music. She also helps with seniors' recreational activities.

Cynthia Mathieu is an excellent example of a determined young woman involved in the life of her community.

We thank you for that, Cynthia. Keep up the good work.

Organized CrimeStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Art Hanger Conservative Calgary Northeast, AB

Mr. Speaker, as the proverb goes, “there is nothing new under the sun”, and that applies to the actions of our government charged with the responsibility to control all crime and look after the good citizens of our country.

Why then is law and order breaking down?

Let us put it into perspective. Drive by shootings, gang wars, fraudulent telemarketing schemes, identity theft, drug operations and juvenile prostitution, to name but a few, are very much prevalent in every community. The alarming aspect, and we should be more than alarmed, is that organized crime launders between $5 billion and $17 billion a year from these activities. Dirty money in the hands of dirty people.

Is it that some in authority are playing in the same sandbox as the shadowy figures of the underworld or are politicians just turning a blind eye to organized criminal activity? Whichever, our justice and law enforcement systems have been compromised and the results are devastating.

No, there is nothing new about politicians not acting when they should. We in the House had better get out of our comfy chairs and address the problem of organized crime before it is too late.

Dalhousie, New BrunswickStatements By Members

June 7th, 2005 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Jean-Claude D'Amours Liberal Madawaska—Restigouche, NB

Mr. Speaker, last week I was invited to take part in an activity in Dalhousie, New Brunswick to recognize 108 individuals who made a difference to the development of that region. The activity was part of the celebration this year of the 100th anniversary of the City of Dalhousie.

People's contribution to their community is vital to keeping our regions dynamic and furthering development. The people who were recognized at the celebration on Saturday had all contributed to making their community a good place to live.

I would like to congratulate the nominees of that special event in Dalhousie and to thank everyone in my constituency who is involved in the development of their community.

Semaine québécoise des personnes handicapéesStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Vincent Bloc Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, June 1 to 7 is the week Quebec sets aside for persons with a disability. This year, the ninth edition, under the banner of “Together, everyone is a winner”, the goal is to help persons with a disability integrate into society.

Quebec's Office des personnes handicapées is working hard to eliminate obstacles for persons with a disability. However, the organization and the government cannot do the job alone. We, all of us, must change our attitude and become more aware of this considerable problem.

On behalf of the Bloc Québécois, I would like to thank the people in the health community, Quebec's Office des personnes handicapées and everyone involved directly or indirectly in improving the welfare of these people. I am thinking in particular of the families and caregivers who live with a physically or intellectually disabled person.

Environment WeekStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Jean Augustine Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians are the stewards of much of the planet's natural environment. Future generations in Canada and around the world are depending on our ability to preserve a natural heritage that includes healthy ecosystems with productive and protected habitats, clean air and water, and a wide variety of species.

The Government of Canada encourages the preservation of our natural environment. The habitat stewardship program for species at risk funds projects that support habitat conservation and fosters stewardship. The ecological gifts program provides tax incentives to citizens who wish to make gifts of ecologically sensitive lands.

In addition to these federal programs, local conservation organizations and people in the riding of Etobicoke--Lakeshore, like Christina Sharma, Dr. Fisenko, Carole Goyette and many others are leading stewardship efforts across the country. I encourage all Canadians to take action this Environment Week to protect our natural future.

Kamloops--Thompson--CaribooStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Betty Hinton Conservative Kamloops—Thompson, BC

Mr. Speaker, my riding of Kamloops--Thompson--Cariboo is host to many wonderful events. Covering over 44,000 square kilometres, we are larger than some small countries and equally diverse.

During the most recent break week, I attended the Clinton Historic Ball. It is a tradition that dates back to 1867. This year's Mr. and Mrs. Clinton are Doris Ilingworth and Dr. Frank Campbell.

Up north in Clearwater, I rode a float in the annual May Day parade, followed by the grand opening of the 100 Mile House Emergency Services Training Centre.

In Kamloops, the South Central trucking and industry dinner and auction for Royal Inland Hospital was a great success. I opened the B.C./Yukon dog agility trials where over 300 dogs from across North America went through their paces. Parliament could take a lesson from their trainers.

I had the honour of reviewing the Royal Canadian Air Cadet Corps and visited with Chief Richard LeBourdais of the Whispering Pines Band prior to the opening of the Kamloops off-road track.

I pay tribute to all those volunteers and organizers who contribute so generously of their time and talent to make these events a success.

John F. Kennedy Business CentreStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Massimo Pacetti Liberal Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC

Mr. Speaker, on April 19, 2005, I had the privilege to attend the launch of the Internet site of the John F. Kennedy Business Centre located in St. Michel. During the event a plaque was presented to all the business partners as a thank you token for outstanding support given to the centre.

The John F. Kennedy Business Centre is an adult school under the English Montreal school board whose mandate is to offer quality services to people in need of training. The Quebec government awards a vocational skills diploma at the end of each session.

The centre, thanks to its strong connection with firms and businesses, can offer work-study modules followed by active placement services. Over 85% of the Business Centre graduates walk right into a job.

I would like to extend my congratulations to the John F. Kennedy Business Centre's administration for a formula which puts the school system in close cooperation with the business sector in order to provide trained personnel according to need.

I would also like to congratulate the teachers for their commitment and the attendees who actively pursue the Canadian dream of a better life through better jobs and better education.

Toronto Port AuthorityStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, over the last few months I have called for the closure of the Toronto Port Authority and transfer of its lands and assets to the City of Toronto. Today I renew that call.

In May the Liberal government gave the Toronto Port Authority $35 million ostensibly for a $22 million settlement not to build a bridge to the Island airport. Globe and Mail columnist John Barber rightly asked how a bridge that was to cost $22 million to build could now cost $35 million not to build.That was a good question.

The Port Authority is a money pit. The Port Authority's financials for 2004, now available, disclose that the airport generated a pathetic $1.4 million in revenue but incurred expenses of $5.3 million.

I state once again that we should stop the hemorrhaging of our tax dollars and close this useless, money wasting enterprise.

AutismStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Conservative Okanagan—Coquihalla, BC

Mr. Speaker, all children are special. All children have special needs. The only differences between children are that the special needs of some children are more evident and obvious than others.

Such is the case for the Rodrigues and Zaffino families in my constituency, and for thousands of other families in B.C. and across Canada. They are families with very special children, children who are autistic.

There is hope for these families. There is a treatment known as Lovaas therapy which, for 30 years, has clinically proven dramatic success rates in 47% of children who receive the therapy, and measurable improvement rates of close to 100% of all autistic children.

However, the agonizing reality is that the Supreme Court of Canada has agreed with the Government of B.C. and the federal Liberal government stating that governments should not have to help families pay for the expensive cost of this remarkable therapy.

Courts and governments can be technically right on an issue from a legal point of view but tragically wrong from a human point of view.

I am asking all MPs from all parties to join in efforts to find solutions for the Canadian families of autistic children. They are truly special children.

Bernard LandryStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Stéphane Bergeron Bloc Verchères—Les Patriotes, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to pay tribute to Bernard Landry, the extraordinary man who shaped the destiny of the riding of Verchères for over 10 years and who has dedicated his life to the development and international reputation of Quebec.

Today, we find ourselves suddenly deprived of the services of a great man who always had the best interests of his fellow Quebeckers at heart.

The political world can be a very thankless place. After serving his nation, the land of his birth, with such devotion, loyalty and determination for decades, he is stepping down with dignity. Although he won a strong majority from Parti Québécois members, this support did not meet the incredible aspirations he had for Quebec and the colossal task he called upon his party to perform in order to achieve those aspirations.

Mr. Landry's departure leaves a gaping hole in Quebec politics. I am consoled by the knowledge that he has reiterated his unfailing desire to continue to fight until Quebec takes its place in the community of nations.

Thank you for everything, Mr. Landry.

Young Offenders ActStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Garry Breitkreuz Conservative Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, I just received a letter from a constituent, Mrs. Carol Sleeva of Canora, Saskatchewan and I would like to read from it. She states:

My 16-year-old son Travis committed suicide on December 6, 2004, after several months of harassment from a group of school students. In his suicide letter he stated that he “just cannot take the fighting anymore”. I am writing in anticipation that you would be able to bring my message to Parliament for the following urgent request: Please revamp the Youth Justice Act to include “bullying” under the Criminal Code. This will allow for the RCMP to start putting an end to this hateful crime. The Youth Justice Act has obviously not been a deterrent for young offenders; in fact it is a joke to them. Our children need to be able to go to school and out in the community feeling safe and free from harassment from those who choose to be bullies in our society.

I have started work on what I hope will eventually lead to the introduction of “Travis' bill” in this House. We need to urgently amend the Young Offenders Act and implement a multi-pronged strategy to address the serious bullying problem in Canada.

Companion of the Order of CanadaStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Yasmin Ratansi Liberal Don Valley East, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Governor General of Canada invested His Highness the Aga Khan as an honorary Companion of the Order of Canada for his life of generosity, benevolence and spiritual direction.

As head of the Aga Khan Development Network, His Highness is responsible for an organization dedicated to seeking long term global solutions to the problems posed by poverty, hunger, illiteracy and ill health in the developing world.

Last April the Government of Canada welcomed the establishment of the Global Centre of Pluralism in partnership with the Aga Khan Development Network. The centre will engage in research and promote dialogue about ethnic, cultural, linguistic and religious diversity with a view to helping foster pluralistic values and establishing similar institutions worldwide.

I am certain that all Canadians and members of the House join me in congratulating the Aga Khan for his ongoing work to improve the lives of millions in the developing world.

Audiotaped ConversationsStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

NDP

Joe Comartin NDP Windsor—Tecumseh, ON

Mr. Speaker, in the case involving the discussions between the Minister of Health, the Prime Minister's chief of staff and the member for Newton—North Delta confusion and accusations abound. There are allegations and counter allegations about the content of the discussions and authenticity of the tapes.

The government says that any information should be forwarded to the RCMP and the Ethics Commissioner. Yet there has been no public release of phone records, meeting logs, correspondence or e-mails relative to the file. There has been no release of the information to the Ethics Commissioner or the RCMP. There has not been even an offer to release this information.

The Prime Minister could provide some clarity on these matters: simply order his minister and his staff to release all information pertaining to this file.

Democratic ReformOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, according to an article in The Hill Times , the Prime Minister has named one member the Minister for Democratic Reform and another the Minister for Democratic Renewal.

Since there appears to be no agenda in either area, could the Prime Minister explain to the House the difference between the two?

Democratic ReformOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

LaSalle—Émard Québec

Liberal

Paul Martin LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, there is no doubt that the whole reform of the way in which we operate is something that has to be looked at and renewal becomes very clear when we see the way the opposition has treated the House. There are constant allegations, innuendoes and the catcalls we hear right now.

In fact, if anybody requires an example of the need for democratic renewal, it is the way the opposition is acting at this very moment.

The BudgetOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I suggest the Prime Minister name a third minister and they might eventually come up with a job description.

The Prime Minister has promised over $26 billion in spending in his attempts to buy votes and cling to power. The last time the Liberals and the NDP formed an alliance and went on this kind of spending spree they damaged the economy for two decades to come.

What evidence is there that Canadians, and for that matter what evidence is there that Liberal voters want NDP fiscal policies?

The BudgetOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Wascana Saskatchewan

Liberal

Ralph Goodale LiberalMinister of Finance

Mr. Speaker, as usual the hon. gentleman has his numbers incorrect. The $26 billion figure is purely a figment of his website and has nothing to do with reality.

Second, this is the government that balanced the books after 27 years of deficit financing. This is the government that has delivered eight consecutive balanced budgets. This is the government that has taken the record of the government from the bottom of the G-7 to the top of the G-7 and delivered the best fiscal performance since 1867, and that will not change.

Federal-Provincial RelationsOral Question Period

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativeLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, we know how the government now intends to keep the budget balanced. It will declare all those promises to be figments of people's imaginations.

Today, in a committee report, three parties in this House have again denounced the fiscal imbalance. The premiers of Quebec, Ontario and other provinces have denounced the fiscal imbalance.

Will the Prime Minister commit to meeting the Council of the Federation to come up with up a viable, long-term solution to this growing national problem?