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House of Commons Hansard #52 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was companies.

Topics

Vern GessnerStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Lynne Yelich Conservative Blackstrap, SK

Mr. Speaker, a multitude of things make Saskatchewan the special place it is, but none more than its people. Its motto “from many peoples, strength” is demonstrated daily through the industrious and compassionate nature of its residents.

This summer the town of Outlook, Saskatchewan lost one of those people. Vern Gessner was eulogized as a “big man, and the biggest part of him was his heart”. Behind these words was a lifetime in the service of others, a lifetime making the world around him a little brighter. Whether it was his involvement in his church, the Knights of Columbus, fundraising for the Special Olympics or the Outlook Canada Day celebrations, Vern epitomized what it meant to be a people person, to love life.

Vern was recognized as Outlook's Citizen of the Year and a recipient of the Saskatchewan Centennial Medal for his efforts. He left behind his beloved siblings, stepchildren and friends, but is again with his beloved wife Joyce.

I was lucky enough to have the privilege of calling him a friend. It is because of people like Vern, I am proud to be from Saskatchewan.

Thanks Vern, and God bless.

Security Certificate ProcessStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Navdeep Bains Liberal Mississauga—Brampton South, ON

Mr. Speaker, many people in Canada are critical of U.S. policies dealing with terrorist suspects, yet they have failed to see our own national policy failures. Many Canadians have condemned secret prisons and have condemned the existence of Guantanamo Bay. However, I believe that Canadians should also condemn the current security certificate process.

In the next few months, the Supreme Court of Canada will decide on the constitutionality of the security certificate process. In case the Supreme Court does not abolish the use of security certificates, I have tabled Bill C-345 to help start the process toward reform.

Last week the Arar report was released. It demonstrates what can happen when information is faulty and not challenged appropriately. Mr. Arar was designated as part of an Islamic extremist group even though the description was inaccurate and without any basis.

The current security certificate process is set up in a manner whereby a similar situation can occur. These individuals might be guilty or they might be innocent. However, when they are detained on a security certificate process, they are not given an opportunity to challenge the evidence nor are they granted the right to due process.

I hope the House will join me and help push for the reform of the security certificate process.

Rosh HashanahStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, each year at this time in the lunar calendar, Jews across the world celebrate the new year, Rosh Hashanah, and begin the Yanim Noraim, the ten days of awe.

This 10 day period, which culminates on the holiday of Yom Kippur, is the most solemn time of the Jewish year and a time when Jews should engage in self-examination and repentance.

Jews greet the new year with hospitality and acts of generosity. Rosh Hashanah meals often include apples and honey, and in some traditions pomegranates as well, to symbolize the hope that the new year will be filled with sweetness.

This year I wish Jews across Canada and across the world a happy and sweet new year, just as Jews are wishing each other and all people of all faiths everywhere a sweet new year.

Canada Revenue AgencyStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Robert Bouchard Bloc Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, QC

Mr. Speaker, since April 30, 2006, people have not been able to get answers to their tax questions from Canada Revenue Agency staff without first making an appointment. For the past few months, the agency has been undergoing restructuring in order to assess the assisted self-service and appointment services at the service kiosks.

The kiosk services were already limited to cities with tax service offices, so this change only makes services even less accessible to taxpayers. Canada Revenue Agency's concept of service now consists of setting up kiosks in offices and ensuring that the service agents show clients how to use them.

If the Canada Revenue Agency slogan is still, “More Ways to Serve You”, the minister should explain how Quebeckers and Canadians are getting more out of fewer services at the agency.

RamadanStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Rahim Jaffer Conservative Edmonton Strathcona, AB

Mr. Speaker, today marks the first day of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. According to Islamic teachings, Ramadan represents God delivering His word to the prophet Mohammed in the form of the Quran.

Ramadan is an important holiday when Muslims take time for prayer, fasting and personal sacrifice. The fast of Ramadan lasts an entire month. It is a time when Muslims concentrate on their faith and spend time with their families and communities. It is also an opportunity to show thanks for God's blessing through works of charity.

Our society is enriched by Muslim Canadians whose commitment to faith reminds us of the gift of religious freedom, peace, and diversity. I hope all Canadians take time to experience and learn more about the Islamic faith.

On behalf of Canada's new government, I would like to wish all my Muslim brothers and sisters a very successful Ramadan and a joyful celebration of Id.

Heart and Stroke FoundationStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Lloyd St. Amand Liberal Brant, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise to congratulate all who were involved with the very successful Heart and Stroke Walk for Heart on September 24 in Brantford.

The event was terrifically coordinated by Jen Mitchell. In attendance was the fundraising king of Brantford and citizen of the year, Mr. C.J. Dick. The ceremony was opened by our well regarded town crier, Dave McKee.

A courageous stroke survivor, Rosemary Galloway, gave a very touching speech on her recovery from a stroke suffered three years ago.

Rosemary is a living example of the tremendous strides that have been made in heart and stroke research, research that is possible because of the generosity of those thousands of Canadians who participate in the walk on an annual basis. In my community alone, 237 people raised $45,100.

The walk is a sterling example of humanity at its finest, people helping people.

British ColumbiaStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

James Moore Conservative Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam, BC

Mr. Speaker, a new poll shows that western alienation, particularly in British Columbia, is on a steep decline, and with good reason. Housing prices are up. Unemployment is down, way down, at under 5%.

British Columbia is booming and our Conservative government is doing more for B.C. than any government in a generation. We have a softwood lumber agreement. We have given our full support to the 2010 Olympics. We have hired more fisheries enforcement officers.

We are investing in British Columbia: $171 million in public transit, $450 million into the Canada Line, $400 million for the mountain pine beetle, and $101 million for border security. It goes on and on. Also, we have 29 different tax reductions that will create more jobs and keep British Columbia growing.

British Columbians have waited for a long time, a very long time, for a prime minister to listen to our needs. Finally, we have one who delivers.

Mackenzie Valley EnvironmentStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington NDP Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, when he was in Yellowknife this past summer, the Prime Minister said he wants the north to be “liberated from the paternalistic policies of the past”.

However, this is not the case when it comes to appointing northerners to the boards set up to protect the environment. Instead, he is allowing the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development to continue Ottawa's paternalistic tradition.

For example, the government of the Northwest Territories nominated a knowledgeable and well respected northerner six months ago, and I now understand that the minister has asked for more names.

According to Hansard, when in opposition the minister said:

This is an important board and it has significant responsibility in respect of the Mackenzie Valley pipeline. The minister has an obligation to set the public's concerns to rest and reassure Canadians of the integrity of the appointment process.

If the minister is unhappy with the name put forward by the government of the Northwest Territories, he should say so and explain why. If the minister says the paternalism--

Mackenzie Valley EnvironmentStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Laval—Les Îles.

Laval Crime Victims Assistance CentreStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Raymonde Folco Liberal Laval—Les Îles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate the Laval Crime Victims Assistance Centre, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary.

We met last Thursday to celebrate the anniversary of this organization that provides front-line services to all victims of crime and to indirect victims as well.

The Laval CAVAC has a criminologist and three social workers on staff, all experts in providing crisis intervention.

I wish to thank them for the vital assistance they provide to victims to help them overcome the physical, psychological and social repercussions of crime.

Since the Quebec National Assembly adopted the act respecting assistance for victims of crime, 16 CAVAC centres have opened their doors across the province.

It is groups like the Laval CAVAC that were extremely helpful in the aftermath of the tragic events at Dawson College in Montreal.

Congratulations to the Laval Crime Victims Assistance Centre. We hope you will continue to operate for many more years.

The Governor GeneralStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Bloc Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, there were many developments last week following the publication of The Globe and Mail article, but nothing could have prepared us for the surprising statement by the Governor General to mark the first anniversary of her installation. This weekend, Ms. Jean stated, among other things, that it was time for Quebeckers to stop looking for what makes them distinct.

The Bloc Québécois will not stop explaining why Quebeckers form a distinct society in Canada. We will continue to do so because our values, our culture, our way of doing things are distinct. For the Governor General, as the representative of the British monarchy — and not elected for that matter — to preach to Quebec goes well beyond her mandate. If she feels like taking up politics, then she should run for office, get elected and only then will we be interested in having a debate with her.

DarfurStatements By Members

September 25th, 2006 / 2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Susan Kadis Liberal Thornhill, ON

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to call attention to the escalating crisis in Darfur and I call on the government to take immediate action toward stopping the genocide.

More than a quarter of a million civilians have been murdered, thousands of women and young girls raped, and millions forced from their homes. As the United Nations has clearly stated, it is “the worst humanitarian catastrophe in the world today”.

Last month, the Sudanese government rejected the UN resolution to send UN peacekeepers to the region to stop this carnage. It is clear that Khartoum has absolutely no intention of stopping the continual atrocities. At a rally I recently attended with Senator Roméo Dallaire, he said Darfur will become another Rwanda if action is not taken now.

The government needs to take a leadership role, together with the UN, immediately imposing sanctions against those responsible for the genocide. Canada must deliver on our initiative, the responsibility to protect. Lip service here at home is just not good enough.

Western ProvincesStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Conservative Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, for years the relationship looked to be nearing an end. With all that cheating, lying and verbal abuse, the western provinces were ready to pack their bags and leave.

Under the leadership of the previous Liberal government, the western provinces had been forced to consider the only option that seemed left: permanent separation. There had been good years, oh yes, and there had been good times, no doubt, but they were only a memory now.

Remaining in a union with such a dishonest and disrespectful partner seemed to be unreasonable, but on January 23 everything changed. Under the leadership of the new Prime Minister, Canada's new Conservative government engaged in a positive relationship with all regions of Canada, including the west. This relationship is characterized by honesty, respect, good communication and trust.

Just eight short months ago, 36% of western residents were ready to pull out and pull the plug. Today, far fewer want to separate.

We know that every damaged relationship takes time to rebuild trust, but we know that this government and this Prime Minister are committed to rebuilding and maintaining a strong, united Canada, one that includes the west.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, since the Prime Minister took office Canadians have become increasingly concerned about the PMO's obsessive control of government communications. Today we have reached a new low, where that approach is affecting the ability of Canadians to understand an issue of fundamental importance.

The former RCMP commissioner, Norman Inkster, said yesterday that the current commissioner, like so many other ministers and deputy ministers under the Conservative government, has been constrained from speaking to the public. Why is the Prime Minister at this time deliberately muzzling an important official of the government, the RCMP commissioner?

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, the government is obviously doing no such thing. In fact, Commissioner Zaccardelli, I gather, will appear before a Commons committee to answer questions this week.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, this government--

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

An hon. member

This new government.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Graham Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

This new government--

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. Leader of the Opposition has the floor.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Bill Graham Liberal Toronto Centre, ON

--has a bad case of new muzzlemania.

The former commissioner of the RCMP also said that it displayed a pattern of behaviour by the government of preventing people who have the facts from speaking out on them in public.

Does the Prime Minister not recognize that he is undermining our democracy when he silences officials like the head of the RCMP?

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, no such silencing has taken place. In fact, I would encourage the hon. member and his colleagues to attend the Commons committee on public security hearings later this week when they can ask Commissioner Zaccardelli any questions they want.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Toronto Centre Ontario

Liberal

Bill Graham LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, in this government, the Prime Minister has silenced his Minister of Public Safety; the Minister of Public Safety has silenced the Commissioner of the RCMP, and so on. This is definitely something new for our system.

When will the government stop muzzling the Commissioner of the RCMP and allow government officials to speak freely to the media?

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, this is just another example of speculation on the part of the Leader of the Opposition that is equally false in English and French.

Royal Canadian Mounted PoliceOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Lucienne Robillard Liberal Westmount—Ville-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, this minority Conservative government is engaging in political interference concerning the Commissioner of the RCMP. Police officers, the former Commissioner of the RCMP, and the former chair of the commission for public complaints against the RCMP all agree that the Commissioner is not the kind of man to remain silent.

Will the Prime Minister, who has a habit of controlling information, tell us why he is preventing Commissioner Zaccardelli from speaking and immediately explaining himself to Canadians?