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House of Commons Hansard #117 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was athletes.

Topics

World War I Victory MedalStatements By Members

11 a.m.

NDP

Peter Stoffer NDP Sackville—Eastern Shore, NS

Mr. Speaker, in 1916 a young 17-year-old black man from Nova Scotia named Percy Fenton signed up with the No. 2 Construction Battalion, the only black battalion in World War I that served overseas. Now his victory medal is being sold on eBay by a profiteer.

The selling of medals for cash profit is simply unacceptable. It is despicable that in this great country somebody would try to financially profit from the valour of other people.

Our veterans who served in past conflicts and those who are serving now are our greatest Canadians. Those medals that they wear so proudly on their chests are not currency. They represent so much more: valour, honour, duty and sacrifice, and remembrance of those who never had a chance to wear theirs.

I would implore the individual from Dutch Settlement, Nova Scotia to take the medal off eBay and donate it to the Black Cultural Centre for Nova Scotia so that all Canadians can revere and protect this medal for all people in the future.

Special Olympics Ontario Winter GamesStatements By Members

11 a.m.

Conservative

Larry Miller Conservative Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound, ON

Mr. Speaker, the city of Owen Sound recently made history when it became the smallest community in Ontario to ever host a Special Olympics Ontario Winter Games.

Owen Sound Police Services Detective Chris Hartley, chairman of the event, his committee and move than 700 volunteers are to be commended for their hard work in putting this very successful event together.

This city of 21,000 people opened its doors and welcomed 299 athletes and their coaches to the games. Over $260,000 was raised in the community, and the community continues to donate by purchasing over 70 winter games jackets which are being given to the local special Olympics athletes.

We could learn a lot about ourselves from these athletes who showed us their determination and enthusiasm. They displayed a very happy, cheerful attitude and a fierce but always fair competitiveness.

We thank them for the memories and once again, a big thank you and congratulations to everyone involved in the 2007 Special Olympics Ontario Winter Games.

Boris MangovStatements By Members

11 a.m.

Liberal

Lui Temelkovski Liberal Oak Ridges—Markham, ON

Mr. Speaker, I pay tribute today to Boris Mangov, a Canadian Macedonian businessman and community leader who recently passed away.

Boris arrived in Canada in 1959 and was active in the Macedonian community for over 40 years. Indeed, there was no Macedonian event that he either did not attend or did not help to organize.

Boris was president of St. Clement Macedonian Cathedral and president of the United Macedonians Organization of Canada. He was involved in drama club activities and organized cultural contacts with Macedonia.

His wife has established a scholarship directed at the Macedonian community in his honour. I encourage second year university students to apply. This is a fitting tribute to a man who worked hard to organize Macedonians in their loyalty to Canada and pride in their heritage.

2007 Canada Winter GamesStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Dick Harris Conservative Cariboo—Prince George, BC

Mr. Speaker, I want to pay tribute to the athletes participating in the Canada Winter Games which began today in Whitehorse, Yukon. They are the very first Canadian games to be held north of the 60th parallel.

We can be proud of each one of the athletes and of this extraordinary event which brings together athletes from 22 sports over a two week period. This is a true testimony to the dedication and hard work of Canadian youth.

I also want to congratulate the thousands of coaches, officials, event organizers, volunteers and parents who have supported the athletes through the years particularly in preparation for this event.

Please join me in cheering on all the athletes and all the volunteers of the 2007 Canada Winter Games.

Polydium de Châteauguay Swim ClubStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Bloc

Carole Freeman Bloc Châteauguay—Saint-Constant, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to commend the exceptional performance of the swimmers of the Polydium de Châteauguay swim club. This gold-medal team did very well at the provincial competition held in January 2007, winning several medals.

Nicolas Bauer was particularly successful, winning gold medals in four out of the six events in which he participated. Annie-Claude Haineault captured the silver medal in the 100 metre breaststroke. Mylène Gariépy won three gold medals and two bronze medals. Lastly, Philippe Corbeil-Boulay also won honours in the 200 metre freestyle.

In addition to the impressive number of medals, nearly all the swimmers improved their personal times, much to the delight of their head coach, Mr. Jocelyn Boileau.

It is with great pride that I congratulate these athletes on their success. These praiseworthy performances are truly indicative of the determination and dynamic nature of the youth in my community.

Foreign AffairsStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Deepak Obhrai Conservative Calgary East, AB

Mr. Speaker, on Monday, February 19 the Minister of Foreign Affairs issued a statement condemning the act of terrorism which saw two bombs explode aboard the Samjhauta Express, a train bound from India to Pakistan. Canada considers this attack to be a deplorable act of violence against innocent civilians and extends its sympathies to the families of the victims.

We are pleased that the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan met as scheduled in New Delhi on February 21, showing that the peace process would not be derailed by terrorist attacks of this kind. We believe sustained action is necessary to undermine militants who wish to derail the peace process and use violence to advance their political goals.

The South Asian region is a priority sector for Canada's new Conservative government. I will spend the next three weeks in Pakistan and India and I look forward to working toward strengthening our political and economic relations.

Guantanamo Bay Detention CampStatements By Members

11:05 a.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Liberal Davenport, ON

Mr. Speaker, today I rise to join my voice to the chorus of people from across the country and around the world over the human rights violations in Guantanamo Bay. This prison has operated outside the scope of international conventions, outside the supervision of the courts, and in violation of international human rights law for over five years.

With the prospect of indefinite detention without a fair trial in such conditions, the potential psychological impact upon those held and their loved ones is a major concern.

Our society was founded on basic principles of freedom and due process. The actions of the American administration in establishing and maintaining Guantanamo Bay not only run counter to the foundations upon which western society stands, but represents a victory for those who would see us abandon our values and our way of life.

I join with the United Nations and former prime minister Joe Clark in calling for this facility to be closed immediately. I call upon the Conservative government to take a lead role in making this happen.

Quebec City Area Cadet GamesStatements By Members

February 23rd, 2007 / 11:05 a.m.

Conservative

Daniel Petit Conservative Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I am very proud to announce that the 7th Quebec City area cadet games will be held in my riding of Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, at the Polyvalente de Charlesbourg, on March 2, 3 and 4, 2007.

These games will bring together more than 600 male and female cadets and nearly 100 staff members from 23 units in the greater Quebec City area.

During this weekend of competitions, the cadets will compete in various events.

The cadet program, nearly 2,000 strong in the Quebec City area, is designed to develop in youth attributes of leadership, team spirit and physical fitness.

I am inviting everyone to come and cheer for our cadets, for the continuation of this program and the delight of the many young people enrolled in it.

I look forward to seeing you at the 7th cadet games, in Charlesbourg, on March 2, 3 and 4.

Railway OperationsStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, I would like to declare my solidarity in support of the United Transportation Union in its struggle to win fair working conditions, fair wages and a fair collective agreement. These CN workers want to return to work. Introducing back to work legislation at this point is redundant and counterproductive.

New Democrats and, I believe, all Canadians want to see a solution to this labour dispute that is acceptable to both sides. A federal mediator was assigned to do this job. My question is, why is the federal government trying to claw back labour rights? This dispute can be settled without this undemocratic back to work legislation. It is the mediator's job to find a resolution and the bullying tactics of CN are not helping the situation.

There are serious issues facing rail workers. There are very real safety and security issues that need to be addressed so that ordinary Canadians can remain confident in our rail system so that these workers are not forced to put their lives on the line.

Diana PalmerStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Brian Murphy Liberal Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe, NB

Mr. Speaker, Diana Palmer of Fredericton died on February 7, 2007. Born in Havana, she never lost her love of Cuba. Schooled at Havergal in Toronto and nursing in Hamilton, Ontario, she met the love of her life, Dr. Marven Palmer, of Douglas Harbour, New Brunswick in Montreal in 1955. Moving to Fredericton later, she was a pillar of the community and a close confidante of progressive Premier Richard Hatfield.

The proud mother of two daughters—one a kindergarten teacher and cultural activist, and the other a renowned director—and a son who became a physician, she was among the most progressive people in her province. Her daughter-in-law and world renowned author, Anne-Marie Macdonald, stated in her eulogy:

This tropical flower, this English rose, this bird of paradise became a Canadian. Many waters cannot guard love. Love never dies. Marven and Diana are a love story; more than half a century of a romance partnership fanned out through us all.

Diana Palmer lived an immigrant's dream with respect for all, a model to all parliamentarians and Canadians.

Centre Espoir RosalieStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Bloc

Richard Nadeau Bloc Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to acknowledge the 15th anniversary of the founding of the Centre Espoir Rosalie in Gatineau.

Inspired by the charity work of Rosalie Cadron-Jetté, Sister Claire Ranger officially founded the Centre Espoir Rosalie on January 15, 1992, with the help of three single mothers.

The organization aims to help low-income single mothers, and specifically unwed mothers, develop the means and resources to take control of their lives from a financial, parenting, personal and social point of view. The goal of the Centre Espoir Rosalie is to break the isolation of families and promote parenting skills, while making mothers aware of their rights and helping them to assert them, all with respect and understanding.

The Bloc Québécois is happy to acknowledge the 15th anniversary of the Centre Espoir Rosalie, and proudly recognizes all its volunteers.

Canadian Writers' FoundationStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is an honour for me to pay tribute to the Canadian Writers' Foundation as it marks its 75th anniversary.

The foundation is Canada's premier organization helping our authors who at some point in their lives may require financial assistance to meet everyday needs. Some of Canada's better writers, including E.J. Pratt, Alfred Desrochers, Milton Acorn, Roger Brien, Dorothy Livesay and Norman Levine, have called upon this body for assistance.

I believe that writers, including poets, are important for the well-being of our society. I therefore applaud the dedication of the Canadian Writers' Foundation.

On behalf of my fellow parliamentarians, I would like to congratulate the foundation and the volunteers who give of their time day after day.

Leader of the OppositionStatements By Members

11:10 a.m.

Conservative

Dean Del Mastro Conservative Peterborough, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation has unearthed an inconvenient truth about the new Leader of the Opposition. Not only is it not easy for him to set priorities, apparently he loathes environmentally friendly modes of transportation. In fact, while serving as minister of the environment, the Leader of the Opposition took 98 separate posh limousine rides between Ottawa and Montreal in just 17 months.

While the environmental cost of providing a comfy commute for the Leader of the Opposition demonstrates his extreme hypocrisy, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation proclaims this is unfair to the taxpayers of Canada. The Canadian Taxpayers Federation was disturbed to learn the Leader of the Opposition billed the taxpayers $14,255 for commuting in stretch comfort as opposed to choosing a less expensive greener commuting option.

While it is clear the Leader of the Opposition did not get it done as minister of the environment, it is even clearer that when it comes to the environment his message is, “do as I say, not as I do”.

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, in the last election, the Prime Minister promised the Canadian Arab Federation that he would review the anti-terrorism laws to get a better balance between security and human rights and this promise, in my view, has been broken. He promised changes to the security certificates and did nothing for a year. Now the Supreme Court has said that we must change the security certificate regime.

When will the government begin to take its responsibilities seriously and start to fix Canada's anti-terrorism and immigration laws?

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, Canada's new government takes very seriously the public security of Canadians. That is our number one priority.

With regard to today's decision, Canada's new government thanks the Supreme Court for its decision on security certificates. We have just received the new decision. The security certificate process has been in place for many decades and it was put in place to protect Canadians.

We will be reviewing that decision and, if we are confident we can, we will look for a way to reconcile the need to protect the security of Canadians with the directions to Parliament from the court to review this matter.

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, the fact is that during the last election campaign, the Conservatives promised changes to the security certificate regime. They knew very well that changes were needed, yet they did nothing.

Now that the Supreme Court has asked for an overhaul of the security certificate regime, will the Conservative government keep its promise, or will it flip-flop yet again?

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, in my opinion, it was the Liberal government that did nothing. Canada's new government thanks the Supreme Court of Canada for its ruling on security certificates. We have just learned the details of the decision. We will examine it closely.

Several decades ago, the security certificate process was brought in to protect Canadians from security threats.

The opposition parties are soft on terrorism and security. Our government remains focused on ensuring national security, collaborating with its partners to ensure the security of their—

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. member for Etobicoke—Lakeshore.

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, this side of the House is not soft on terrorism. During the last election campaign, the Prime Minister promised to “create a good balance between measures that will ensure public safety and measures that ensure respect for the rights and freedoms of Canadian citizens”. That is what the Prime Minister said.

Why did the Conservative government change the balanced position it promised during the last election?

Security CertificatesOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, how ironic to hear what the Liberal Party member is saying today.

In fact, his position has always been very much to the contrary. He has actually been a believer, unlike his leader, in the importance of protecting Canadians and their public security. I would encourage him to speak to his leader about that.

For example, at Royal Military College in 2001, he said:

Some people are arguing that we have not exhausted all such means, and it is important to be aware of something that has been forgotten in all the debate about 11 September. We must remind ourselves that normal tools of law and order — police investigation and prosecution of terror suspects — have been used and found wanting.

Security InformationOral Questions

11:15 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, the newspaper story used by the Prime Minister this week in a disgusting drive-by smear against a member of Parliament contained assertions about alleged police proceedings of a highly secret nature. They are secret to ensure the integrity of those proceedings and yet the information, true or not, was made public.

Why did the government deem it appropriate to publish secret security information? Does that disclosure, in itself, not constitute breaking the law?

Security InformationOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

York—Simcoe Ontario

Conservative

Peter Van Loan ConservativeLeader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform

Mr. Speaker, the government did no such thing. I believe the reference was to an article in The Vancouver Sun, which did not even get read in the House. If he has an issue, it is with The Vancouver Sun.

I would remind the member that in the reference he is making, the assertion is from a professor at the University of Ottawa, Errol Mendes, who has been a very significant contributor to the Liberal Party over the years.

Security InformationOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Some hon. members

Oh, oh!

Security InformationOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

Order, please. The hon. member for Wascana now has the floor. I do not think he needs a lot of help with his question.

Security InformationOral Questions

11:20 a.m.

Liberal

Ralph Goodale Liberal Wascana, SK

Mr. Speaker, the despicable events of last Wednesday were no accident. At the very moment the Prime Minister was on his feet slurring the member for Mississauga—Brampton South, his press office was sending copies of that newspaper story to all the media. From beginning to end, this was contrived, premeditated slander.

Let us go right to the source. Who in the government disclosed secret security information? Was it or was it not the Prime Minister's Office?