House of Commons Hansard #76 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was sentencing.

Topics

Criminal CodeGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

Liberal

Shawn Murphy Liberal Charlottetown, PE

Mr. Speaker, we hope that does not happen, not today anyway.

I believe the member's question dealt with the substance of the offence and some of the issues around convicting those accused of child pornography. I certainly agree with a lot of what he said. There has been some difficulty with interpretations from the court and it is something that has to be dealt with.

Again, I will remind the member that Bill C-9 deals with sentencing. It does not deal with the substance of the offence. As I said in my remarks, we have to tighten up the individual provisions of the conditional sentencing provisions of the Criminal Code. Bill C-9 does that. I believe it will deal exactly with what the member is talking about for people convicted of sexual assault, sexual assault involving a minor, violent criminals, but at the same time it still leaves open the tool of a conditional sentence for certain property related and minor crimes. That tool will still be available to a judge in the appropriate circumstances.

Criminal CodeGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, I would seek the unanimous consent of the House to split my time with the member for Winnipeg Centre.

Criminal CodeGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker NDP Bill Blaikie

Is there unanimous consent for the hon. member to split her time with the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre?

Criminal CodeGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Criminal CodeGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am speaking to the amended bill. There are a number of issues that I raised in the past which I need to raise again. Despite many efforts to talk about these issues, I still do not see the kind of movement that is required. I am speaking about the adverse impact that our current criminal justice system has on aboriginal peoples, first nations, Métis and Inuit peoples, as well as on other minority groups, but I am going to be speaking specifically about aboriginal peoples.

In a recent publication, the Assembly of First Nations talked about the over-representation of aboriginal peoples in the prison system. The assembly said that 2.7% of the population in Canada as of March 31 are first nations, but they represent 18.5% of all federally incarcerated prisoners in Canada. In 2000, approximately 1,792, or 41.3%, of all federally incarcerated aboriginal offenders were 25 years or younger. That is a shocking number. That is a lost generation when that many young people of aboriginal descent are in prison. In addition, women are also over-represented. The assembly found that there is an increasing trend of aboriginal women being incarcerated. This has meant an increase of approximately 74%--

Criminal CodeGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker NDP Bill Blaikie

Order. I am sorry to interrupt the hon. member, but the time has arrived for statements by members. The member has seven minutes and 58 seconds, I believe, remaining in her time.

Ontario Clean Water ActStatements By Members

10:55 a.m.

Conservative

Scott Reid Conservative Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, ON

Mr. Speaker, when a law is enacted for the benefit of all in society, it is society as a whole and not an unfortunate few who should bear the associated costs. This rule applies no matter how important the law, and it certainly applies to the worthwhile goal of source water protection as enacted last month in Ontario's clean water act.

To the extent that it is necessary under the clean water act to place restrictions on the use or enjoyment of land or property by farmers and other landowners, the associated financial losses should be fully compensated for by the provincial government with all taxpayers, in other words all beneficiaries, picking up the burden.

It is disturbing that the new law specifically states that landowners shall receive no compensation for damages. The result is that full costs of potentially devastating prohibitions on property use will be borne solely by the landowners, even when the costs were largely avoidable or had been imposed without reason or justification.

This amounts to confiscation without compensation. It is wrong and Dalton McGuinty needs to set it right before great harm is done to thousands of rural Ontario landowners.

YouthStatements By Members

11 a.m.

Liberal

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

Mr. Speaker, during the recent parliamentary break, I had the opportunity to meet a group of students from the Edmunston campus of the Université de Moncton, and to discuss Canadian democracy with them.

I also met with two groups from the Cité des Jeunes A.-M.-Sormany in Edmunston to talk about my role as a member of Parliament and the role of government.

I can attest to the interest these young people have in Canadian politics. The questions asked by these students were surprisingly relevant, and I am convinced that such meetings should take place more frequently to stimulate the interest of young Canadians in Canadian politics.

These young students are our leaders of tomorrow. This is why I welcome every opportunity to meet with such groups in our schools and universities.

Because the future is being shaped today, it is important to provide our young people with every opportunity to learn more about the workings of our system of government and to ask any questions they may have.

Before this House here today, I would like to thank Ms. Mazouz and Mr. Nadeau and their students for inviting me into their classrooms. I hope the experience was as valuable for them as it was for me.

Municipality of RacineStatements By Members

11 a.m.

Bloc

Robert Vincent Bloc Shefford, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am very proud to bring to your attention the 100th anniversary of the municipality of Racine in my riding.

Racine's story began in 1906 with the arrival of the first parish priest, Father Joseph-Eugène Lemieux, and the creation of the parish registers. Racine is a rural municipality known for its spirit of cooperation: its 1,200 residents have four co-ops. Racine is a vacation destination surrounded by numerous lakes, and is also known for its social and agricultural energy.

Beginning in 2001, a celebration of local products has spread the word about the municipality's many artisans, as well as the region's cultural, agricultural and culinary heritage. This year, the celebration promises to be even more exciting because the parish's centennial reunion will be a part of it.

I would like to wish all the residents of the municipality of Racine a joyous celebration of this milestone.

Gulu WalkStatements By Members

11 a.m.

NDP

Paul Dewar NDP Ottawa Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, recently I joined my Ottawa neighbours and thousands globally in the annual Gulu Walk.

For 40,000 children in northern Uganda, eight kilometres is the average distance between safety and horror. Every night, these children walk many kilometres seeking safety from abduction by the Lord's Resistance Army, the LRA. During the decades long war, the LRA has abducted more than 30,000 children using torture and terror to warp children into child soldiers and sex slaves.

The nightly commute and the return journey to school each morning is dangerous. Many are abducted, raped or murdered along the way. To ignore the plight of these children is reprehensible.

Canada can and must use its influence in the United Nations to call for both sides in the conflict to honour the peace process. The LRA must immediately release all child soldiers and captives and the global community, with Canada leading, must accept its responsibility and ameliorate the suffering of these children whose innocence has been stolen and whose lives have been shattered.

Sri LankaStatements By Members

11 a.m.

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Conservative Calgary East, AB

Mr. Speaker, Canada remains concerned with the ongoing conflict in Sri Lanka which has recently suffered some of the worst violence in years. We commend the parties for attending peace talks in Geneva this past weekend. We urge the parties to build on this opportunity and to commit to a further round of talks soon.

Canada calls on the LTTE to renounce terrorism and violence. It must demonstrate that it is willing to make compromises necessary for a political solution within a united Sri Lanka.

We also call on the democratically elected government of Sri Lanka to continue its efforts to resolve the current impasse and create the conditions for talks to continue. This includes addressing the credible allegations of serious human rights abuses directed against its security forces.

Canada continues to believe there can be no military solution to this lengthy conflict. We urge the parties to work toward a negotiated settlement which satisfies the legitimate aspirations of all Sri Lankans.

Carol HarryStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Blair Wilson Liberal West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea to Sky Country, BC

Mr. Speaker, a great woman in my riding passed away from cancer recently.

Carol Harry was a remarkable woman with an incredible heart. Born of the Squamish Nation, she was an integral part of the whole Squamish community. She carried herself with dignity and grace.

Carol always had a wonderful smile for everyone, and was always friendly and generous with others. She could truly fill a room, enchanting everyone with her warmth. No matter what challenges she faced throughout her life, Carol always had time to help others. It is no wonder that she was so widely looked up to by the entire community.

Some truths can only be known firsthand. Carol Harry has shown us just how warm, generous and strong someone can be, no matter what the circumstances. Carol will be greatly missed.

Repentigny by electionStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Sylvie Boucher Conservative Beauport—Limoilou, QC

Mr. Speaker, the people of Repentigny, who go to the polls on November 27, deserve better than a Bloc member who only throws out ideas.

They deserve a representative who will not only promote their interests, but truly act in their interests. That is exactly what Stéphane Bourgon, the Conservative candidate in Repentigny is offering: real results in Ottawa.

A native of Repentigny, Stéphane Bourgon is committed to serving his community by giving families in Repentigny a strong voice in Canada's new government.

Stephane Bourgon will join a government that has achieved more for Quebeckers in nine months than the Bloc, forever stuck in opposition, ever has: a reduction in the GST from 7% to 6%, a monthly allowance of $100 for every child under six, a tax credit for textbook purchases—

Repentigny by electionStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

NDP

The Deputy Speaker NDP Bill Blaikie

The hon. member for Vaudreuil-Soulanges.

ImmigrationStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Bloc

Meili Faille Bloc Vaudreuil—Soulanges, QC

Mr. Speaker, we hope that in the coming months, the government will turn its attention to the serious mental suffering experienced by people who, for years, must put up with the slow processing of family reunification cases, including refugees who have been given protection.

The Bloc Québécois and a number of immigrants' rights organizations are asking the government to make changes in order to expedite the process in the case of children separated from their family and to eliminate the $550 file processing fee. We have received no response to our requests.

The Conservative government may be deaf to the cries of the most vulnerable people in our society, but it needs to know that the Bloc Québécois and organizations in civil society are aware of the problem and will continue calling for changes.

We only realize the true meaning of family life when all members of the family are reunited.

Children's Fitness Tax CreditStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Conservative Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, the children's fitness tax credit is part of the Government of Canada's commitment to maintaining the health of Canadians, specifically to address the negative impact of declining levels of physical activity among our children.

Canada's new government is keeping its promise. An expert panel set up by the Minister of Finance has released its report to the government. During its consultations, the expert panel travelled right across Canada listening to a broad range of stakeholders. The panel found out that many of these children will benefit greatly from this new tax credit.

The children's fitness tax credit will encourage more children to be physically active and help parents with the costs of organized fitness activities. This is a good news story for all Canadian families.

RefugeesStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, there are thousands of people from eight moratorium countries who live in Canada for years in legal limbo. These individuals are unable to return to their home country because of insecurity there, a danger explicitly recognized by the Canadian government. They are unable to get on with their lives because they are denied permanent residence under Canada's immigration and refugee system.

The impacts for those in limbo are dramatic and painful. They cannot reunite with their family members, even spouses and children. They have limited job prospects. They cannot pursue their education. They are ineligible for federal child tax benefits, even if they work and pay the same taxes as Canadians. They have access only to emergency health coverage. They cannot travel outside Canada. They struggle with profound feelings of powerlessness and hopelessness.

Keeping hundreds of people in long term limbo is not only inhumane but clearly is also unproductive for Canadian society. These people are asking for measures to be implemented to allow them to become permanent residents. I join the Canadian Council for Refugees in supporting these communities in its efforts.

London North Centre ByelectionStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Joe Preston Conservative Elgin—Middlesex—London, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to extend best wishes for success to Dianne Haskett, the Conservative candidate in the London North Centre byelection.

A native of London, Dianne has been extremely involved in the community. From 1991 to 1994 Dianne served on the London city council. During this period she helped found Open Homes Canada, a program designed to promote goodwill, understanding and national unity.

Dianne also served Londoners as the city's mayor from 1994 to 2000. As mayor, Dianne successfully initiated a strategic plan for downtown renewal. Dianne successfully attracted to London the 2001 Canada Summer Games and was the first mayor in London's history to freeze municipal taxes two years in a row.

Dianne Haskett has a record of making tough principled decisions. Like the Prime Minister and this government, Dianne Haskett will get things done for Londoners. All the best, Dianne. We will see her here.

Aboriginal AffairsStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder NDP Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Mr. Speaker, on October 28, 40 first nations gathered at the Snuneymuxw longhouse to sign a protocol agreement. The protocol's purpose is to engage B.C. and Canada in a unified way to remove barriers and allow for the speedy conclusion of fair and viable treaties.

The protocol focuses on six issues: achieving certainty for all parties without requiring extinguishment of aboriginal rights, title and identity; finding options to meet legitimate government interests without forcing first nations to give up reserve status and constitutional land protections; including first nation vision and interests on governance in treaties; proposing options for first nations to maintain a decision making role in the co-management of lands and resources in their territories; opening up fiscal and taxation plans to create healthy and prosperous first nation communities; and developing tools for first nations to manage fish stocks, enhance habitat and support their economies from the sale of fish as they have always done.

After 14 years the time has come to objectively identify the fundamental barriers to progress on treaties and to address them collectively.

Syed Ashar WarsiStatements By Members

November 3rd, 2006 / 11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Judy Sgro Liberal York West, ON

Mr. Speaker, sadly on October 5, 2006, a prominent member of our community passed away. Mr. Syed Ashar Warsi said goodbye to this world with Asma and his children Nosheen, Farheen, Zaf and Zarreen by his side.

He was an adoring husband and a devoted father. Syed was the voice for many ethnic communities, devoting countless hours to organizations which promote cultural diversity and peace.

He was a member of the board of the Asian Canadian Support Centre and CAMP Canada, an organization dedicated to young professionals. He was also committed to The Ambition newspaper, which is published by his wife Asma Warsi.

At his funeral, Syed was honoured by many friends, family members and well-known members of both the Islamic and political community. Syed was a true Canadian and an inspiration to us all. He will be dearly missed, but never forgotten.

ADISQ GalaStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Bloc Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, last Sunday, at the 28th annual gala of the Association québécoise de l'industrie du disque, du spectacle et de la vidéo or ADISQ, Kaïn, a group from Drummondville, was nominated in five categories.

The band, composed of Steve Veilleux, Patrick Lemieux, Éric Maheu and Yanick Blanchette, was ultimately named “group of the year” that evening. This represents important recognition for these young men, after their many years of effort and hard work. They serve as a reminder that, through dedication and perseverance, we can fulfil our ambitions.

During the gala, Félix awards were handed out to various artists and artisans working in the music, performance and video industry. These artists are a true testament to the quality and diversity of artistic productions in Quebec.

I would like to congratulate the members of Kaïn, and all their partners, on this prestigious award. The entire Drummondville community is very proud of them.

The EnvironmentStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

John Godfrey Liberal Don Valley West, ON

Mr. Speaker, on Tuesday of this week the NDP abandoned a united stand in favour of Kyoto to score political points by introducing a bill that made no mention of Kyoto and would not commit to any reduction of greenhouse gases until 2015.

Yesterday the government, in cooperation with the NDP, announced that its dead air act will be revived by a special committee. Yet, this bill was pronounced dead on arrival by the majority of this House upon its introduction and that majority included the NDP.

The NDP is not clearing the log jam. It is adding to it for political gain. Environmental groups like the David Suzuki Foundation have expressed concern about this dilution of the debate.

Our position has been clear. We support Kyoto. We want a focused discussion on that issue and not a distraction from that party which has been known to use smog and mirrors to create the impression it is moving forward on climate change, when really it is slowing the discussion down.

Federal Accountability ActStatements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Conservative

James Rajotte Conservative Edmonton—Leduc, AB

Mr. Speaker, today is a sad milestone. It is day 135 of the Liberal Senate's anti-democratic delay on the toughest anti-corruption law in Canadian history, the federal accountability act.

Canada's new government included a new section in the accountability act which would ban ministers and parliamentary secretaries from voting on or debating issues in Parliament which would put them into a conflict of interest.

What did Liberal senators do? Did they vote to preserve this important law? No. Unbelievably, they removed this section from the accountability act entirely.

Clearly, the Liberals have not learned one thing from the last election. Again, it is clear the Liberal senators are more interested in protecting the private interests of the Liberal Party rather than the public interests of Canadians.

Shame on the Liberals for standing up for conflicts of interest and against the accountability act.

Bloc QuébécoisStatements By Members

11:15 a.m.

Bloc

Nicole Demers Bloc Laval, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to be a member of the Bloc Québécois. True, we will never be the governing party. Therein lies our strength, that which gives us true power.

Therein lies the power that allows the Bloc Québécois to make choices that reflect the values and needs of the people we represent, without having to yield to powerful lobbies such as the oil and gas lobby.

Therein lies the power that gives us the daring and the ability to defend important issues such as the Kyoto protocol and the fiscal imbalance.

Therein lies the power of our private members' bills, through which we can pass important legislation, such as the anti-scab bill. Therein also lies the power to demand accountability, as we did during the sponsorship scandal.

Real power is at the source of every action taken by the Bloc Québécois. This power is what Quebeckers have been giving to us for more than 13 years, because they know that we will defend their interests with rigour, determination and, above all, integrity.

Income TrustsOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, all week this government has tied itself in knots denying that it broke its promise not to impose any new taxes on income trusts. Yet that is exactly what it did. Its decision came out of nowhere and had disastrous consequences for millions of small investors in this country.

Will the Conservative government recognize that it alone is responsible for the heavy losses taken by small investors?