House of Commons photo

Crucial Fact

  • Her favourite word was cultural.

Last in Parliament November 2005, as Liberal MP for Parkdale—High Park (Ontario)

Lost her last election, in 2006, with 36% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Tom Patterson February 24th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, it is with great sadness that we learned of the death of former journalist and founder of the Stratford Festival, Tom Patterson, on February 23, 2005, at the age of 84.

The Stratford Festival owes its existence to the dream of this local journalist who founded the event in the 1950s.

Innumerable artists, directors and other Canadian and foreign theatre professionals have participated in its productions, enlarging the audience for the work of William Shakespeare.

Alex Guinness and Christopher Plummer are among the most notable actors who have played on the Stratford Festival's stage.

Mr. Patterson has left us the legacy of the Stratford Festival. “Without Tom Patterson, there would not be a Stratford Festival in Canada”, underscored its artistic director, Richard Monette, while highlighting the extraordinary vision of this man.

Mr. Patterson was made a member of the Order of Canada in 1967.

On behalf of the Government of Canada, I want to express our appreciation and offer my sincere condolences to his family and friends.

Lithuania February 18th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, February 16 is, and always will be, a significant and meaningful date for Lithuanians. On Wednesday, the people of Lithuania and Lithuanian Canadians gathered to celebrate the independence of the land of their heritage.

This year marked the 87th anniversary of the independence of Lithuania. It is on this day in 1918 that Lithuania declared its independence from Russia and once again redeclared its sovereignty in 1990.

After World War I this small nation achieved freedom and proclaimed itself the Lithuanian Republic. On February 16, 1918 the founders of this great nation asserted their country's independence and commitment to a government based on justice, democracy and the rights of the individual. For decades, Lithuanians have been commemorating this event, during Lithuania's independence, oppression and subsequent independence.

I would like to offer my congratulations to the people of Lithuania on this momentous occasion.

Broadcasting February 17th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, I would like to repeat for the House that we have received an indication an appeal will be filed. When that appeal is filed, the governor in council will review both parties' positions.

Broadcasting February 17th, 2005

Yes, Mr. Speaker, I can inform the House that today the parties have indicated that they will be appealing. However, no official documentation has yet been filed. They have until March 7 to file. At that time a decision will be made.

National Flag of Canada Day February 15th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, today is National Flag of Canada Day.

Forty years ago many of us were gathered in schoolyards around this time, proud witnesses to one of the great events in Canadian history. It was a cool day in many parts of the land and downright freezing cold in others. Yet there was a warmth in our hearts as we listened to a story unfold about a distinctive symbol, one that would soon become recognized and revered the world over.

In 1964 a Senate and House of Commons committee was formed. It called for submissions and received hundreds of designs and patterns. Hundreds of speeches were made in Parliament. Parliamentarians and other eminent Canadians had but one shared goal, to find a family symbol for the people of Canada that painted a portrait of justice, peace and equality for all humankind.

That goal has been reached. Whether we work to build our nation here at home or reach out to help a foreign nation in need, the flag of Canada waves a signal that harmony will prevail.

Let us look up to our flag with affection and pride. Its threads are woven tightly to create one seamless community from sea to sea to sea.

Songwriters Hall of Fame February 9th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, last night I attended the second annual Songwriters Hall of Fame gala in Toronto, at which seven songwriters and twenty-two remarkable songs were inducted.

In addition, I had the opportunity to take part in the induction of our national anthem, O Canada , into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame.

In 1980, O Canada was officially proclaimed our national anthem, but even then it is a song with a history. It had been composed 100 years earlier, in 1880, by Calixa Lavallée, with lyrics by Sir Adolphe-Basile Routhier. The song caught on, gained popularity and several English versions were produced.

In 1908, Robert Stanley Weir wrote the version on which today's anthem is based. The stirring melody and patriotic lyrics in both official languages still resound with all Canadians who, “with glowing hearts...stand on guard” for this great country.

I want to commend the Songwriters Hall of Fame for its recognition of our national anthem, O Canada .

Francophone and Acadian Communities February 4th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to repeat what the minister said in the House yesterday. She is working with the community, with the minority community and with her officials. They are working to find the proper solution, but at this time I should like to also point out that the department has invested over $300 million since 1994 to support the development of official language minority communities throughout Canada and we should be proud of that.

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation February 4th, 2005

Mr. Speaker, let me begin by first congratulating RCI for the wonderful job it does internationally. It is something we should be very proud of.

Let me also thank RCI and the CBC for actually postponing any kind of decision whatsoever to reduce programming to Ukrainians during the election. I would ask this House to commend CBC Radio-Canada and RCI for the fabulous job they did leading up to the elections in Ukraine.

Black History Month February 3rd, 2005

Mr. Speaker, in December 1995 the Parliament of Canada passed a motion officially designating February as Black History Month. This motion was an important milestone because it finally acknowledged the rich and often overlooked history of Black Canadians.

Every day, Black Canadians are working in all communities to make Canada a great place to live. Their contribution to society is vital to Canada's economic and cultural life.

During February, I invite hon. members and all Canadians to listen to a story, join in on an activity, read a book or check the Internet to find more information on the history of Black Canadians. There are many good websites, including the Canadian Heritage site. Above all, we should not hesitate to share what we learn with our children, friends and acquaintances.

We have so much to learn from each other as we work together to build a better Canada.

Finance February 1st, 2005

Mr. Speaker, I would like to respond to the question with respect to providing aid to cities first.

Providing aid to cities has been a key platform within the government and under our new Prime Minister. When he took office, the Prime Minister's three priorities were cities, health care and child care. He moved immediately to reduce the GST for municipalities. In our election platform we committed to move ahead on the gas tax. I believe that is about what the hon. member is speaking. I have also been lobbied to expand the gas tax to the diesel tax. I can say with some confidence that the Prime Minister has said that we will ensure those platform promises are acted upon.

Knowing how important the gas tax is, the Prime Minister is working with the minister responsible for infrastructure and communities, and I hope the finance minister is listening. I and the city of Toronto also support moving quickly on the gas tax.

With respect to junior hockey, I am not a specialist in the sports area. I have heard that submissions are being made to finance with respect to this. We need to move forward with artists in the same way because all of a sudden they are no longer being looked at as being self-employed, but rather as employees and that has huge ramifications for all artists across Canada. This is similar to the hockey player situation.

I undertake to take the member's message forward to the Minister of Finance.