June 14, 1993

PC

Steve Eugene Paproski (Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Progressive Conservative

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Paproski):

Order, please. We are on the adjournment motion and we cannot hear. Would you go behind the curtain, s'il vous plait. Thank you.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   STEEL INDUSTRY
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NDP

Steve Butland

New Democratic Party

Mr. Butland:

I appreciate your intervention, Mr. Speaker. It was somewhat difficult to carry on.

As I suggested, the Canadian international tribunal should be applying Canadian trade law that protects the Canadian steel industry. The Canadian steel producers are suggesting that American trade law is much more onerous. It is there to protect the American steel industry whereas the Canadian trade law as applied by the Canadian International Trade Tribunal is there to uphold the law rather than protect the industry.

In a perfect world we think that perhaps our system is the better system but the Americans insist on treating us unfairly as they are wont to do and have continuously done for quite a long period of time, definitely since the signing of the free trade agreement. Trade harassment has actually increased as opposed to having decreased.

I suppose the government is going to respond by suggesting that the minister has met with the steel producers and it is going to monitor very much more closely than it has done in the past the dumping process by many countries. The one that gave us the greatest concern was the United States of America which on a regular basis recently has harassed the Canadian steel industry.

All we are looking for is this level playing field that is so often touted for all of us, but we do not feel that the field is level whatsoever. All we are looking for is the fair and equitable treatment from our American neighbours that we are affording them.

No amount of monitoring by the steel industry, by the trade minister or his department will change the efficacy of American trade law and the lack of efficacy of Canadian trade law.

I hope that the member responding on behalf of the government will give us more assurances. If trade law has to be changed to deal with our American counterparts, so be it. It is not the perfect solution. It is not even

the appropriate solution but it is the only solution that we can proffer and is acceptable to Canadian steel producers. I suggest we go forward with it.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   STEEL INDUSTRY
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PC

Walter Leland Rutherford (Lee) Clark (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Lee Clark (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment):

Mr. Speaker, to respond briefly to my hon. friend's question I want to note that first of all the Minister of Finance and the Minister for International Trade did meet with representatives of the steel industry just recently and discussed the concerns which the industry had and which my hon. friend has been raising in the House. They also discussed the options which may be available to that industry and to the government working in co-operation with the industry.

As you know, Mr. Speaker, but I think it important nevertheless to remind Canadians, the government of course had no part in the decisions to which my hon. friend refers. The Canadian International Trade Tribunal is an independent body and the decisions of that tribunal are the final steps in what might be described as a quasi-judicial process.

As a result of that if the industry believes that the tribunal was wrong in either of the decisions then it does of course have recourse to appeal either before the Federal Court of Canada or under the FTA, chapter 19.

This government understands the industry's concern. We understand that it may indeed feel vulnerable to dumped imports in the future. We are prepared to work with the industry in ensuring that it is adequately protected should imports increase in the future.

With respect to the industry's concerns with the differences in Canadian and U.S. trade remedy law we acknowledge that there may be such differences and we are prepared to look at them. These differences, however, are not at the heart of the problems faced in the Canadian steel industry. We feel that some of those differences will be eliminated if the multilateral trade negotiations are concluded.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   STEEL INDUSTRY
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JOB START PROGRAM

PC

John Williston (Bud) Bird

Progressive Conservative

Mr. J. W. Bud Bird (Fredericton-York-Sunbury):

Mr. Speaker, I want to continue with a question I directed some time ago to the minister responsible for employment and immigration with respect to the Job

June 14, 1993

Adjournment Debate

Start program which exists in the town of Oromocto, New Brunswick in my constituency.

This is a unique approach to job training in the sense that it creates an employment scenario and actually hires disadvantaged youth under the age of 24 who have been on welfare for more than one year or have been without work for more than one year. It puts them in a disciplined job environment where they are literally hired as employees.

This program had its origin in 1984 in the United Nations year of Youth which Canada had adopted. The town of Oromocto at that time took the initiative, patterned on programs which existed at the time in Winnipeg, Montreal and Halifax, to design this unique Job Start program that contained the best of those existing programs and added some additional features. They have had a remarkable record over the years to the extent that of all the student employees, as they are called, who have graduated from that program in the past five years, 74 per cent remain employed.

That is a statistic and an accountability record that is missing in so many of the job training and employment programs that exist in Canada. This factor of accountability does not seem to be a tracking that occurs with these other programs so it is hard perhaps to measure the value that is achieved in comparison. It is one of the features that demonstrates the cost effectiveness of this program where the CEIC contribution is used to maintain training staff, to pay the student employees on a minimum wage basis over a 24-week period and to subject them to all of the disciplines of employment, including punctuality and dress codes. They receive driver's licence training, CPR training and first-aid training. Many of them are advanced to the completion of their high school education requirements. At the end of the 24-week period they graduate from the employment scenario and are placed in the work place where they have this remarkable record of 74 per cent employment.

One of the criticisms has been that because they are employed at the minimum wage and deductions are made for unemployment insurance and workmen's compensation, there is a potential that these training programs will result in students who are also on unemployment eligibility after they finish the training program. This has to be a risk that is accepted for the

value of the job discipline scenario. The statistical record of the success of the program demonstrates that the risk is really very low. The 74 per cent employment factor over such a period of five years is a rationalization of the risk of the cost of the program and the manner in which it is applied.

My question and my recommendation to CEIC is you have supported the Job Start program and the Job Start design in Oromocto, New Brunswick, this one community, for several years now. Each year there are two classes or job training programs of 24 weeks duration, each involving an average of 22 students. The success rate has been remarkable. Why is this program not taken and expanded elsewhere in Canada and made a permanent component of the Canadian Jobs Strategy program design or a unique option in the very comprehensive training structure which we have at work in Canada at this time?

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   JOB START PROGRAM
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PC

Walter Leland Rutherford (Lee) Clark (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Lee Clark (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of the Environment):

Mr. Speaker, first of all let me say to my hon. friend that the department does indeed agree that the Job Start program to which he refers has been successful. Because of that success the program has been approved to continue for another year with a budget of some $346,000.

The key answer to my hon. friend's question is that the department is most anxious to ensure the criteria for such programs remain fluid and flexible. It is understood that the job retraining requirements throughout Canada are very much in a state of flux. What is required this year will not necessarily be the case next year and it has been an ongoing process.

For that reason therefore the department prefers that the criteria and operations of the federal employment program remain sufficiently flexible so that the needs of the individuals it serves can be addressed.

I remind my hon. friend that training programs similar to the Job Start program may well be initiated and continue to be initiated in other areas under the project-based training component of the employability improvement program. I hope he will find some consolation in that.

In closing I encourage my hon. friend to ensure that success stories of this kind are brought to the department's attention. Very often the department fails to hear

June 14. 1993

of the program successes and therefore does not receive the encouragement it often deserves.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   JOB START PROGRAM
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MULTIC'ULTURALISM

PC

Alan Redway

Progressive Conservative

Hon. Alan Redway (Don Valley East):

Mr. Speaker, you will recall some three months ago Mrs. Mary Marko Elaskett visited Parliament Hill. Mrs. Haskett was born in Canada some 84 years ago. In 1915 at the age of six, Mrs. Haskett and her family were arrested and sent to an internment camp in northern Quebec called Spirit Lake.

Spirit Lake of course is no longer on any map of Canada. Mrs. Haskett was one of some 5,000 Canadians of Ukrainian origin who were rounded up and interned because they came from parts of Ukraine that at the time were controlled by the Austro-Hungarian empire, an empire with which Canada and its World War I allies were at war.

Although some 5,000 Canadians were treated in this fashion, there is no mention of it whatsoever in the history books of Canada. As far as Canadian history is concerned this never happened. There is no record of Spirit Lake or any other camps such as this ever existing.

When Mrs. Haskett came here for her visit it reminded me of a talk 1 had with another of my constituents who told me about the experiences of his father. His father, who was a Canadian with origins in the Austro-Hungarian empire, came to Canada before World War I. He too was arrested and interned.

This man had little formal education but he was hard working and had earned some money. He did not trust the banks. He decided to save his money. He put it into gold and not the bank. When he was interned he took his gold with him. Of course the guards at the internment camp said that he could not go into the camp with the gold and that if he gave it to them he would be given a receipt so he could claim it later, if he ever got out.

After World War I my constituent's father gave his receipt to the guards who took the receipt and went to get the gold. They came back saying that there was no gold. That did not happen just to one person, it happened to many people in World War I.

The son of this man, my constituent, investigated what had happened to his father's earnings, possessions and

Adjournment Debate

gold. He found that the Bank of Canada had been keeping these things in trust for many years, not just for his father but for other Canadians.

Of course the Bank of Canada said on presenting the receipt he would be given the money with interest. Of course the guards took the receipt. The Bank of Canada said that was too bad and it would just have to sit on that money, letting it accumulate for the benefit of who knows whom. That happened not just to one person but to a great many Canadians.

I think it is understandable that my constituent, as the beneficiary of his father's estate, would expect to get his money back. I think it is understandable that Mrs. Haskett in coming to Parliament Hill wanted an apology, wanted the fact that she and 5,000 other Canadians like her actually should be recorded in Canadian history. There should be something in the history books of Canada about the fact that these events took place.

It is not an isolated incident. In fact the Prime Minister drew attention to that when he spoke on November 4, 1990 to the National Congress of Italian-Canadians. My friend the parliamentary secretary was there at that time.

At that time the Prime Minister said: "I want to discuss a particularly sad chapter in our history that directly affected some of you here today and that concerns all Canadians. I am speaking, of course, about the harassment and the internment of Canadians of Italian origin under the War Measures Act during World War II. It was not an isolated case, in fact it was part of a pattern of discrimination practised by the Government of Canada over a period of years against Chinese Canadians, Ukrainian Canadians and others. That Canadians were interned unjustly must never be forgotten", said the Prime Minister. "It is a matter of simple justice. It is in that spirit that we will proceed."

The Prime Minister went on in that address on November 4, 1990 to say, and I quote: "I am pleased to announce today that during this session of Parliament I will rise in the House of Commons and extend a formal apology to all members of the Italian community for this unspeakable act and to other Canadians who have suffered similar grievances".

June 14, 1993

Adjournment Debate

Mr. Speaker, I do not have to tell you that the life of this Parliament is drawing to an end. Need I say more?

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   MULTIC'ULTURALISM
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PC

Vincent Della Noce (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Multiculturalism and Citizenship; Parliamentary Secretary to the Secretary of State of Canada)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Vincent Della Noce (Parliamentary Secretary to Secretary of State of Canada and Minister of Multiculturalism and Citizenship):

Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate my friend for bringing to my attention and the attention of the House this important issue.

The hon. member for Don Valley East has again raised the important question of community redress. He will know that I have a very special interest in this issue which I have been working on for about six or seven years.

He is totally right in what he just said about this Parliament and the Prime Minister. I was there and I heard it with my own ears. I heard about those Italians. Some of those poor internees must be 86 years old by now. Mr. Serafino from Ottawa and Mr. Capograno from Montreal heard those words, those apologies. I wish that every community could have heard this man say this. I quote Mr. Serafino: "It sounded like music to my ears. I wish my wife was alive and here with me to hear these words".

At the request of the Prime Minister, the Minister of Multiculturalism and Citizenship met with representatives of communities whose members have concerns about treatment of some of their members by past governments of this country. By the way, on June 10 of last week it was 53 years since those things happened to my community and nothing has been done about it. The minister discussed how the government could best symbolize recognition of this treatment.

The principal groups with whom the minister met included the Chinese Canadian National Council, the

National Congress of Chinese Canadians, the National Congress of Italian Canadians and the Ukrainian Canadian Congress.

I would like to point out that this is the first government to give serious consideration to this matter. I say as a personal comment that I have been pursuing this matter since 1986. I feel that this government, our government, will be willing to take that kind of action and it is the only one that can do it, but I hope it can do it fast enough.

The government has discussed a fair and reasonable package with the communities concerned. The government has said it will move ahead if the package receives broad support across the communities concerned.

I know that some communities are playing politics on this issue. I hope they stop that because in 53 years there was nothing done about this.

When the government makes a proposal for community redress, it must also ensure that the decision is fair and equitable for all Canadians. The issue is not only about recognizing certain facts of our history but also deciding how we intend to progress as a nation founded on the principles of justice, equality and respect for all.

That is the firm commitment the Government of Canada has made, and that is why it is doing everything it can to deal with this question in the appropriate manner, and I hope that our government will succeed.

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   MULTIC'ULTURALISM
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PC

Steve Eugene Paproski (Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Progressive Conservative

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Paproski):

The motion to adjourn the House is now deemed to have been adopted. Therefore, this House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 10 a.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

Topic:   PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION
Subtopic:   MULTIC'ULTURALISM
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The House adjourned at 6.34 p.m.



Tuesday, June 15, 1993


June 14, 1993