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House of Commons Hansard #63 of the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was afghan.

Topics

The EnvironmentStatements By Members

2 p.m.

NDP

Bill Siksay NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, tonight the House will have the opportunity to vote on a straightforward confidence motion sponsored by New Democrats. It expresses our deep frustration that, despite the urgent need to effectively address the climate change crisis, the Conservative government refuses to bring the clean air and climate change act to a vote.

The Conservatives' original clean air act did not have the support of the House, environmentalists or Canadians. That was when New Democrats succeeded in convincing all parties that the bill should be completely rewritten in a process whereby all parties could have input and influence.

It was rewritten. Now the new clean air and climate change act contains ideas championed by all parties and is supported by the environmental community.

Still the government refuses to bring it to a vote. Given the climate change crisis, this Parliament must act. By passing the clean air and climate change act, this Parliament can take action that will make a difference.

Canadians want action from this Parliament on climate change. The Conservatives have not taken their responsibility for climate change seriously. They do not have the confidence of Canadians when it comes to dealing with this crisis. They should not command the confidence of this House.

Medal of BraveryStatements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Bruce Stanton Conservative Simcoe North, ON

Mr. Speaker, on February 29, I had the great honour of attending a commemoration at Rideau Hall that recognized a number of outstanding Canadians, including a constituent of mine from the village of Lafontaine, Ontario: Randy Smith, the Fire Chief of the Township of Tiny.

Fire Chief Smith and 10 others were awarded the Medal of Bravery for the courage and determination they displayed on August 27, 2004. On that date, a massive mudslide near Terrace, B.C., trapped two men in a river of mud and debris. Even with the threat of further mudslides and against heavy rain and thick mud, Randy and his colleagues risked their lives to rescue the two men.

Randy's wife, Donna, and their three children, Christine, Jason and Mark, are tremendously proud of Randy. I join with them in commending Randy and the 40 other true Canadian heroes who received Medals of Bravery last month and I invite all members of the House to also do so.

While I have the attention of the House, I might also congratulate the member for Cambridge, who happens to be celebrating his 50th birthday today.

Mohamed KohailStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Bernard Patry Liberal Pierrefonds—Dollard, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada has to be vigilant in cases where Canadian citizens are being detained abroad, especially in countries that still have the death penalty.

This is not a matter of interfering in another country's business, but of ensuring that all the rights of each Canadian citizen are respected and, more importantly, that each gets a fair trial.

In the case of Mohamed Kohail, who is being held in Saudi Arabia and is sentenced to death, his lawyer was present just once in the nine phases of the trial and the witnesses in his client's defence were disallowed.

In light of the very short deadline before Mohamed Kohail's execution, it is imperative that the Government of Canada act swiftly to have his rights and defence respected and heard.

Canadian Coast Guard AuxiliaryStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Gerald Keddy Conservative South Shore—St. Margaret's, NS

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to the men and women of the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary, maritime region. The auxiliary's 16 directors, under the able chairmanship of Frank McLaughlin, just completed its annual meeting in Halifax. This volunteer organization, which is staffed primarily by fishing captains and their crews, successfully participate in over 200 search and rescue missions annually.

Under the direction of the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Halifax, the Coast Guard Auxiliary Maritimes was tasked to go to sea in over 5,200 missions since it was formed in 1978. These 732 skilled mariners are constantly upgrading their search and rescue skills and risk their lives to ensure that those in peril on the sea are brought back to land safely.

I wish to pay tribute to and give thanks for the brave service and high level of technical capability these courageous volunteers provide for all Canadians and indeed all international mariners who travel the waters off our east coast.

Maison au DiapasonStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Christian Ouellet Bloc Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to acknowledge in this House the excellent work of a group of citizens from my riding who are dedicated to the well-being of those nearing the end of life.

These are citizens from Brome—Missisquoi and Haute-Yamaska who initiated the project for a regional palliative care centre: the Maison au Diapason. In addition to palliative care for the terminally ill, the centre will provide specialized technical and psychological support to the afflicted families.

The centre, which will be located in Bromont, is an eight-room house with living rooms and space for the families. The public is contributing to this project through numerous fundraising activities. A few months ago, a group successfully climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and, these days, volunteers are selling bricks, symbolizing the construction of the house, for just a few dollars.

I wish the best of luck to the support team at the Maison au Diapason.

InfrastructureStatements By Members

March 10th, 2008 / 2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Wajid Khan Conservative Mississauga—Streetsville, ON

Mr. Speaker, last year the government set aside $83 million for public transit infrastructure in Mississauga. I am delighted that the contribution agreements were recently signed. this money is now flowing to the municipality for this long overdue project.

Mississauga has been waiting for 12 longs years for this funding. That is because for 10 years the previous Liberal successive governments ignored the needs of Mississauga.

I thank the Prime Minister, as well as the Minister of Finance, and the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities for helping the people of Mississauga.

This government continues to address the infrastructure deficit left by the successive Liberal governments. We are investing in the future with our building Canada plan, which will deliver $33 billion to municipalities over seven years. In budget 2008 we are making the gas tax fund permanent so municipalities can better plan and finance their infrastructure.

As we can see, the Conservative government is investing in the infrastructure that Canada needs.

TibetStatements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Larry Bagnell Liberal Yukon, YT

Mr. Speaker, today marks the 49th anniversary of the uprising of the Tibetan people, that fateful day in 1959 when Tibetans took to the streets of Tibet's capital, Lhasa, to protest China's invasion and illegal occupation of Tibet.

Like thousands of people around the world, we in the Canadian Parliament remember those who have stood up for what they believe in. Like those courageous people 49 years ago and those who still struggle valiantly inside Tibet, we are standing up for what we believe in and demanding a peaceful resolution of the Tibetan issue.

As a member of the Parliamentary Friends of Tibet, I had the privilege of meeting His Holiness the Dalai Lama during his recent visit to Canada, and talking about Yukon and Burma. In his presence, one is overwhelmed by the grace and peace that has sustained for a lifetime his epic struggle for his people in Tibet and the autonomy that is rightfully theirs and will return to them one day.

National Community Development TrustStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

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

Mr. Speaker, last week, in the presence of a minister representing the Quebec government, our Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities announced that the Government of Canada will be allocating $216.9 million over three years to the Government of Quebec as part of the new national community development trust to help vulnerable communities and workers.

The trust builds on other initiatives brought in by our government to shelter the country's economy from instability in international markets and to make Canada stronger and more prosperous in the long term.

Once again, the Conservative members have fought for Quebec workers while the Bloc, always empty-handed, has done nothing more than concoct ideas about Quebec separation.

The Bloc Québécois can provide no real results, nor can it provide any money. All it can do is talk and talk, condemned to eternity on the opposition benches.

The BudgetStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Charlie Angus NDP Timmins—James Bay, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Conservative-Liberal budget has done nothing for the working families of northern Ontario. At a time when oil is peaking at above $100 a barrel, there is no plan to stop the gouging at the pumps, which is affecting consumers across the north.

Even worse is the fact that there no plan in place to help rural people who are stuck with increasingly high fuel bills. I know senior citizens who are paying over $900 a month just to stay warm. The problem is if people have an oil boiler in northern Ontario, it is difficult to convert to other alternative technologies.

That is why we need a plan to move to a greener technology for rural people. I would suggest wood pellets because the pellets can be created out of any kind of wood waste. It is a much greener technology.

The fact is the government has to stop protecting its buddies in the oil patch and start recognizing that rural people in northern Ontario deserve a government with a vision for a sustainable future.

Jutra AwardsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Liberal

Marcel Proulx Liberal Hull—Aylmer, QC

Mr. Speaker, last night, Quebec's best film actors, directors, producers and creators were honoured at the Jutra awards ceremony.

Hosted by the lively Normand Brathwaite, the 10th Jutra awards celebrated outstanding performances, with awards won by Roy Dupuis for Shake Hands with the Devil, and Guylaine Tremblay for Contre toute espérance, subtitled Summit Circle in English, and also highlighted outstanding direction, with an award won by Stéphane Lafleur for Continental, a film without guns.

The evening also showed us that our film industry is alive and well, and that it is able to reach a large audience and touch many people across the province and throughout the world.

I ask all of my colleagues to join me in congratulating all the Jutra award winners and participants.

Jutra awardsStatements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Bloc

Monique Guay Bloc Rivière-du-Nord, QC

Mr. Speaker, last night, the 10th annual Jutra awards gala was held. The gala first toured several cinemas in Quebec from February 25 to 28, presenting the four films in the best film category. To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the awards, a retrospective of Quebec's best films from the past ten years was presented. This year's best film was Continental, a film without guns.

The Jutra for best actor went to Roy Dupuis for his portrayal of General Dallaire in the movie Shake Hands with the Devil. Guylaine Tremblay won the Jutra in the best actress category for her role in the film Contre toute espérance (Summit Cirlcle). The Jutra-Hommage tribute award went to an important director who is considered a key witness of our times and our history, Jean-Claude Labrecque. The quality of the films and documentaries made by this man, who views cinema as a means of presenting history, is remarkable.

Congratulations to all the winners and everyone who was nominated.

Visitor VisasStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Liberal

Borys Wrzesnewskyj Liberal Etobicoke Centre, ON

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to report that after three years of hard work, informing, petitioning, cajoling, my Motion No. 19 and its previous incarnation, Motion No. 238, calling on the government to lift visitor visa requirements for the new EU member states of the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Slovakia, was finally implemented in its entirety.

Nineteen years ago the Iron Curtain came down and, finally, a week ago Canada's visa curtain came down as well. It is immensely gratifying that this Easter will be the first that families and friends from Poland, Hungary, the Baltic states, Slovakia and the Czech Republic will be able to visit their loved ones in Canada, and all it will take is the purchase of a plane ticket.

It is rare for the contents of an opposition private member's motion to be adopted in its entirety by the government. I am humbled by the support I received in the thousands of communications and petitions from individuals in diaspora organizations throughout Canada.

Together we were many and we made it happen.

Child CareStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Conservative

Chris Warkentin Conservative Peace River, AB

Mr. Speaker, the Liberals continue to demonstrate their distrust in the ability of parents to take care of their own children.

The member for Beaches—East York has said that parents are only capable of providing child minding, not child care.

Just last week the Liberal MP for Scarborough—Guildwood called the universal child care benefit “a cheesy program”. What an insult to the over 1.4 million families that benefit from this program.

Our plan helps parents pay for the type of care that is best for their families, and it has lifted approximately 55,000 children out of low income status.

The previous Liberal government promised a so-called national child care program in every election since 1993. Sheila Copps said it right when she said, “The Liberal plan is a cash cow for government while families are cash poor”.

As our Prime Minister has said:

Children aren’t raised in academic faculties or government offices or the boardrooms of social activists. Children are raised in families, so that’s where the money flows.

Access to CBC/Radio-CanadaStatements By Members

2:15 p.m.

Independent

Louise Thibault Independent Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, the transmission of solid and credible information is vital to the life of a community. For this reason, all taxpayers annually fund the CBC/Radio-Canada, a public network that broadcasts information and promotes culture.

Given that all Canadians contribute to its funding, the network should reflect the reality of citizens living in the communities it serves. Since 1990, the Téléjournal de l'Est du Québec has been produced in Quebec City. What would Torontonians say if their news broadcasts were produced in Montreal?

Even worse. CBC/Radio-Canada does not intend to replace its analog signal east of Rimouski. That means that for CBC/Radio-Canada there are two classes of citizens: they pay the same price but do not receive the same service.

People in eastern Quebec deserve to be included in the CBC/Radio-Canada network and do not accept the withdrawal of service.

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I would like something clarified for Canadians. Is it true that the first time the Prime Minister learned of a financial offer to Mr. Cadman was during his meeting with Mrs. Cadman on September 9, 2005?

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, the Liberal approach and story on this seems to be shifting quite dramatically as well, as is usually the case with the Liberals.

The only meeting that happened, as I have said time and again, was on May 19. We have been very clear about that and consistent on that fact.

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, I do not think the member understood the question. I will repeat it.

When did the Prime Minister first hear about the financial offer made to Mr. Cadman? Was it on September 9 during his meeting with Mrs. Cadman, yes or no? The question is clear. Will the member answer it?

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, the problem with the question is that there was no financial offer. There was no offer.

EthicsOral Questions

2:15 p.m.

Saint-Laurent—Cartierville Québec

Liberal

Stéphane Dion LiberalLeader of the Opposition

Mr. Speaker, so why, on the tape, does the Prime Minister speak about a financial offer? Why, on the tape, does he speak about financial insecurity, financial issues and financial considerations?

If the Prime Minister was speaking the truth on the tape, why is the member opposite trying to mislead this House?

The Prime Minister said on tape that there was a financial offer made to Mr. Cadman, but he tried to say to his operatives “do not press Mr. Cadman”. This is the truth.

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

No, Mr. Speaker, it is not the truth no matter how many times the Leader of the Opposition might have to tell himself to try to convince himself of that.

The Liberals have already made up their minds on this issue. They have decided that the Prime Minister was aware and complicit in a crime. They are false on that issue and they are going to have to--

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Some hon. members

Hear, hear!

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Conservative

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

They cheer now, but they will not be cheering in the very near future.

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister himself is on tape confirming that an offer to Mr. Cadman dealt with financial considerations. Canadians have still not been told what were those considerations.

Mr. Cadman and his family had legitimate financial concerns about what would happen after his death. It just seems obvious that the Conservatives made an offer to address those concerns.

So again, and we will keep on until we get an answer, what specific financial offer was made to address the concerns of Mr. Cadman and his family?

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam B.C.

Conservative

James Moore ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services and for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics

Mr. Speaker, the specific offer given to Chuck Cadman, the specific offer of May 19 had three components: first, to rejoin the Conservative caucus; second, we would help him secure the Conservative Party nomination; and third, we would support him in his re-election in whatever financial help he might need getting re-elected as a Conservative candidate. Those are the three elements he received.

EthicsOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Liberal

Michael Ignatieff Liberal Etobicoke—Lakeshore, ON

Mr. Speaker, he did not need a Conservative nomination. He was not going to run. He did not need their help.

How long will they keep repeating these stories? No one believes them.

So I ask the member again, what financial considerations were offered to Mr. Cadman and his family?