November 5, 1979

LIB

Robert Phillip Kaplan

Liberal

Mr. Kaplan:

He doesn't know anything about it.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   REASON FOR CHANGE IN POLICY RESPECTING FAMILY ADMISSIONS
Permalink
PC

Lincoln MacCauley Alexander (Minister of Labour)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Alexander:

It is not a question of his knowing anything about it! If the hon. member is interested in an answer, I just gave him the answer. I indicated to the hon. member that the Minister of Employment and Immigration has high on his list, in terms of bringing immigrants to Canada, the policy of reunification of families; which is something that we in opposition made sure that the government implemented by way of a preamble to the present Immigration Act.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   REASON FOR CHANGE IN POLICY RESPECTING FAMILY ADMISSIONS
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Jerome (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

The hon. member for Saint-Leonard-Anjou on a supplementary question.

November 5, 1979

Oral Questions

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   IMMIGRATION
Sub-subtopic:   REASON FOR CHANGE IN POLICY RESPECTING FAMILY ADMISSIONS
Permalink

SOCIAL SECURITY

LIB

Monique Bégin

Liberal

Hon. Monique Begin (Saint-Leonard-Anjou):

I should like to put a supplementary question Mr. Speaker.

My supplementary question is, since it deals with social policies:

Now that the line of the Tory government on family allowance is, "My wife doesn't need it", can the minister of social development, the secretary of state or the Minister of National Health and Welfare inform the House whether they will table the proposed Tory proposal on family allowances before Christmas, in order that Canadian mothers will know whether they will get their full indexation and what will happen to that unique federal program for families?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   SOCIAL SECURITY
Sub-subtopic:   REQUEST FOR TABLING OF GOVERNMENT PROPOSALS ON FAMILY ALLOWANCES
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Jerome (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. Before the minister rises to answer, I should correct the record. It was not the hon. member who said to me that this was a supplementary question; I made that assumption quite incorrectly. The hon. member was entitled to the floor, nonetheless.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   SOCIAL SECURITY
Sub-subtopic:   REQUEST FOR TABLING OF GOVERNMENT PROPOSALS ON FAMILY ALLOWANCES
Permalink
PC

David Edward Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. David Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare):

There is no proposal, Mr. Speaker, so therefore it will not be tabled. As I think I indicated in a previous answer to a question from the same hon. member, when I took over the department 1 carried on the work she had begun with regard to looking at all the social security programs that the Department of National Health and Welfare offers. That was both in terms of equity and to find ways in which we could provide money to those who most need it and, indeed, are most in need.

It is in the spirit of those reviews that the "proposal" came out in the newspaper. I think she well knows, and I can assure the House, that there is no proposal. That is an option which is under investigation by the department as, indeed, it was when she was the minister. I might add, now that he has raised the scare, that mothers can expect their family allowances to continue in the New Year.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   SOCIAL SECURITY
Sub-subtopic:   REQUEST FOR TABLING OF GOVERNMENT PROPOSALS ON FAMILY ALLOWANCES
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INQUIRY WHETHER FAMILY ALLOWANCE BUDGET WILL BE CUT

LIB

Monique Bégin

Liberal

Hon. Monique Begin (Saint-Leonard-Anjou):

I should like to put a supplementary question, Mr. Speaker.

1 find the minister's reply rather inconsistent, since during the weekend the President of the Treasury Board and the Prime Minister, whom I heard myself on television, spoke about the possibility of reducing family allowances, something which was never contemplated by the Liberal government. 1 would like to ask the minister if he can assure this House that the total budget for family allowances, which is over $2 billion and that for the child tax credit, which is over $600 million,

will be earmarked, whatever the plans are, for schemes covering Canadian children, and not to keep foolish election promises?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INQUIRY WHETHER FAMILY ALLOWANCE BUDGET WILL BE CUT
Permalink
PC

David Edward Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. David Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare):

Mr. Speaker, from 1962 to 1977-

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INQUIRY WHETHER FAMILY ALLOWANCE BUDGET WILL BE CUT
Permalink
LIB

Monique Bégin

Liberal

Miss Begin:

Get back to 1979.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INQUIRY WHETHER FAMILY ALLOWANCE BUDGET WILL BE CUT
Permalink
PC

David Edward Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Crombie:

-the amount of money which was used for income redistribution in this country was such that it did not move the level of poverty or deal with the question of poverty in any significant way. In fact, the difficulty has been that as we put in more and more money for income redistribution, we did not target it for those most in need.

Half of the $15 billion which goes into income redistribution does not touch those who are below the poverty line. That is why it is essential that we look not only at the family allowance, but also at the child tax exemption to see ways in which we can increase the effectiveness of the child tax credit, because it is equitable and targets at those most in need, something which I wish the previous government had done ten years ago.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INQUIRY WHETHER FAMILY ALLOWANCE BUDGET WILL BE CUT
Permalink
?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   INQUIRY WHETHER FAMILY ALLOWANCE BUDGET WILL BE CUT
Permalink

REQUEST FAMILY ALLOWANCE PROGRAM RETAIN PRINCIPLE OF UNIVERSALITY

NDP

William Alexander (Bill) Blaikie

New Democratic Party

Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg-Birds Hill):

Mr. Speaker, 1 thank hon. members opposite for that ovation.

In view of previous questions, and in view of the report this weekend in the Toronto Star concerning the government's intentions with regard to the family allowance program, can the minister assure this House today that the Conservative government will not tamper with the principle of universality on which the family allowance program is based and which the minister himself said just last week has served this country well?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FAMILY ALLOWANCE PROGRAM RETAIN PRINCIPLE OF UNIVERSALITY
Permalink
PC

David Edward Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare)

Progressive Conservative

Hon. David Crombie (Minister of National Health and Welfare):

Mr. Speaker, as I indicated last week, indeed the family allowance program has served this country well. I cannot give the hon. member the assurance he seeks because, as I indicated, my department right now is studying ways by which we can make the family allowance program, the child tax credit and the tax exemption more equitable for those most in need. 1 might add that my department is also considering whether we can allocate funds to those on whom poverty rests most, that is, the young, the old, women-led families and the disabled and handicapped. That is the program of this government.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FAMILY ALLOWANCE PROGRAM RETAIN PRINCIPLE OF UNIVERSALITY
Permalink
NDP

William Alexander (Bill) Blaikie

New Democratic Party

Mr. Blaikie:

Mr. Speaker, if the minister cannot assure this House that the principle of universality, which we uphold, will be upheld, can he assure the House that the money saved on any detraction from universality which is embedded in the options the hon. minister is reviewing will be used for the benefit of low-income Canadians, and not handed over to the

November 5, 1979

President of the Treasury Board as another sacrifice on the altar of restraint by those who expected tax relief from this government but who are getting the opposite?

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FAMILY ALLOWANCE PROGRAM RETAIN PRINCIPLE OF UNIVERSALITY
Permalink
LIB

James Alexander Jerome (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. The hon. member for Eglinton-Lawrence.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   REQUEST FAMILY ALLOWANCE PROGRAM RETAIN PRINCIPLE OF UNIVERSALITY
Permalink

THE ADMINISTRATION

LIB

Roland de Corneille

Liberal

Mr. Roland de Corneille (Eglinton-Lawrence):

Mr. Speaker, my question is addressed to the right hon. Prime Minister.

Topic:   ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
Subtopic:   THE ADMINISTRATION
Sub-subtopic:   MEASURES TO RESTORE CONFIDENCE IN DEMOCRATIC INSTITUTIONS
Permalink

November 5, 1979