January 24, 1994

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The Deputy Speaker

Order, please. I know this is a new Parliament, but would the hon. member please address the Chair?

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LIB

Dennis Mills

Liberal

Mr. Mills (Broadview-Greenwood)

Mr. Speaker, my apologies to you. Through you to the member, I am much more optimistic obviously and because we have new members we can address these issues quickly.

Concerning the people of Quebec, through you Mr. Speaker to the members of the Bloc Quebecois, we must never forget that they do have 50-odd members and two million votes, but there are seven million people in Quebec. I think the challenge for all of us in this House who want to keep Canada together is for us to address some of the legitimate problems that are brought to this House. I say that there are some real legitimate beefs. If we can address those things then ultimately it is our responsibility to go over the heads of the separatists right to the people and tell them to stay in Canada.

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The Deputy Speaker

The time has expired for questions and comments. The next speaker will be the member for Medicine Hat. I might say before recognizing our new colleague that an error was made. It was my error that you did not get recognized earlier. You now have 10 minutes with 5 minutes of questions

thereafter before we go to the member of the Official Opposition.

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REF

Monte Solberg

Reform

Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat)

Mr. Speaker and hon. members, first of all I offer my sincere congratulations to all who won election to the House of Commons. To serve as a member of Parliament is a great responsibility and a great honour.

Mr. Speaker, yours is certainly a double honour. You were honoured by your constituents in Edmonton in becoming a member of Parliament once again and of course now by your appointment as a Speaker of this place. Please accept my congratulations.

To the government and to the Prime Minister in particular I extend my wishes for every success in solving the problems that stand before us. They are problems that really cut across party lines, provincial boundaries, cultures, genders, institutions and even the generations. If we are to solve these problems it will require the best efforts of all Canadians. It is my sincere hope that we will all together apply ourselves to that task.

To the people of the Medicine Hat constituency I give my gratitude for the warmth, friendship and support they have shown toward me as their member of Parliament. I thank them for the great trust they have placed in me as their servant and representative to the Government of Canada.

I begin that job by offering advice to the government on its intention to bring reform to the unemployment insurance program. The government is to be commended for recognizing that unemployment insurance as it is presently constituted is a destroyer of jobs and a ravager of initiative. Likewise, the government is correct in asserting that more emphasis must be placed on improving training and that business should play a major role in providing training.

Who could know better than businesses themselves what skills are required for their future success? Certainly not government. I am concerned, however, when the Prime Minister talks about a training tax to coerce business. If the government would instead cut spending and ultimately lower taxes one could be sure that business could provide its own training because it is in the best interest of businesses to do so. Nonetheless, simply recognizing that a problem exists is the first major step in resolving it. For that alone I give the government full marks.

I am also profoundly concerned when the government fails to outline the process by which it will shape the unemployment insurance program of the future. It is no exaggeration to say that the present unemployment insurance program has not only failed Canadians, it has wounded us. In ignoring pleas for change from both businesses and those people who are sincerely looking for work we have cut the soul out of entire regions of the country. If this is the type of help that comes from government then Canadians should run from government as fast as they can. On the other hand, if the government is prepared to share the decision-making power to involve those who fund the program, to design it for the long run to ensure that it is in line with what other levels of government and the private sector are doing, with the current fiscal reality, if it is prepared to set clear measurable objectives, if it is committed to making the program more accessible and user friendly, if it is committed to promoting equal access and benefits for all, if it promotes and rewards personal responsibility and initiative, if it commits itself to following that process in designing an unemployment insurance program, it will succeed beyond our greatest hopes. Contrarily, if it is a program that is designed and implemented and controlled solely by government, it will fail. If it invites greater public input but then ignores that input, it will fail. In failing it will again crush the initiative of the unemployed and business creating economic and human carnage of tragic proportions.

Specifically how should we go about redesigning the UI program? The first decision-making principle is that all stakeholders must have a voice in designing this program. That includes business, particularly small business which pays most of the premiums. It should include of course the workers who pay into the fund. It should include the federal government as an adviser and a junior stakeholder. Although this may seem obvious, governments I find often ignore this advice. The process should not include those groups which have a vested interest in not resolving the problem.

It is a great truth that incentives matter. If a group or an individual receives funding so that they can protest high unemployment levels do not expect them to propose solutions that will make their position or group unnecessary. Even though they are often well-meaning and claim passionately that they want to solve the problem, I point out that they have a powerful economic incentive to perpetuate the problem. These two competing forces can never be completely disentangled.

The second principle is that decisions must be made with the long term best interests of the country in mind. Too often decisions are made without considering their long term implications.

In 1971 the Liberal government chose to regionally extend unemployment insurance benefits. Today we reap the rotten fruit of that hastily planted seed. Governments must always consider the effect of their decisions over the long run.

The third principle is that decisions should always be made with complete awareness of the current environment. By that I mean the current economic, social, cultural and political environment, both within and without the country. Unless we are all pulling together in the same direction on every front even the best designed programs will ultimately fail. Today's environment is one of tight fiscal constraints, freer trade and greater public participation in the democratic process. A newly de-

signed unemployment insurance program must be sensitive to this and reflect these trends in its design.

The fourth principle is that all government programs must have clear measurable objectives. What is the point of designing a program whose effects are not measured or cannot be measured because the objectives are never made clear? In those instances when the effects are obviously counterproductive why have a bureaucracy? Why even have a government if it will not fix the problem?

For 20 years the evidence against high benefits, regionally extended benefits and training boondoggles has been mounting. Every government in that 20 year period has cowered from fixing the problem.

The fifth principle is that all government programs must be designed to be user friendly. Today the myriad programs offered by human resources development are hopelessly complicated. As one field level bureaucrat told me: "Our job is to make poorly designed programs run efficiently". What a damning indictment of the system that is.

In the introduction of the 1985 Forget commission report there is a touching letter from a lady who decries how hopelessly complicated getting a UI benefit can be. Sadly that is still true eight years after that report was tabled.

Governments' failure to solve problems can be traced back directly to the process by which they make decisions. Without public input in the design of these programs they will never ever be able to respond to the needs of the public.

The sixth principle is that all government programs must always treat all Canadians the same. Choosing to live in a particular area of the country should not be a reason for receiving greater or longer benefits. The government must recognize that in attempting to correct what are sometimes inequities in the natural resource wealth of the country it only succeeds in corrupting the human resource wealth of the same area of the country it originally set out to help.

That is the malady of large tracts of Atlantic Canada and it is the legacy of a government that did not understand that government has its limitations.

The seventh principle is that all government programs should promote and encourage personal responsibility and initiative. Of course this should be demonstrated at the top by giving business and employees the responsibility for setting premiums and determining benefits. Those premiums will reflect more accurately than any government decree what businesses and employees can afford to pay in premiums and pay out in benefits while maintaining and strenghthening the viability of businesses and the purchasing power of employees, thereby strenghthening the economy.

Those who are chronically unemployed because they lack experience or training should be the beneficiaries of an integrated program of training and income support provided jointly by the provincial and federal governments. That, however, is a speech for another day.

Before we can reform unemployment insurance or social programs or anything we do in government, we must first reform how we make decisions including all the stakeholders looking at the long run, being aware of the current environment, having clear measurable objectives, designing programs to be user friendly, treating all Canadians equally, encouraging personal responsibility and initiative. This is the framework within which unemployment insurance should be reformed.

The $20 billion Canadians spend on unemployment insurance is not play money. It is not the government's money. It is the product of the hard work of millions of Canadians. It is their money. It is their right to have a say in how it is spent. If we respect that most basic right we will produce a responsible and sustainable unemployment insurance program. If we respect that right in all of our deliberations we will have a government that works within its limits and lives within its means.

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LIB

Roger Simmons

Liberal

Hon. Roger Simmons (Burin-St. George's)

Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate my friend from Medicine Hat for his first speech in the House. I just got the last part of it because I was so busy stuffing my face.

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LIB
LIB

Roger Simmons

Liberal

Mr. Simmons

Food. My friend from York South-Weston is here. Anything can happen now.

The member for Medicine Hat talked about the unemployment insurance program. Certainly I would be the first to agree that there is a need for change. I want to scrutinize some of the suggestions he made. One that caught my attention I will come back to in a moment. But let me make a basic point about the unemployment insurance system.

It is not a bogy. It is a system that has served this country very well. Let us not, to use a cliché, throw out the baby with the bath water. This is a system that has served this country very well.

The issue I want to come back to is the one of the variable entrance requirements. I say to the member kindly that if we were to extrapolate and take to its logical conclusion his point that one ought not to have a different entrance requirement depending on where one lives in this country, he is also espousing that all automobile insurance plans ought to be identical and that there ought not to be any variability in the type of coverage that is needed by different individuals.

Of course he does not believe that. I ask him to examine a little more closely his thesis that where one lives in the country makes no difference.

I submit that it makes a whole lot of difference. For example, it makes a difference in the ability of one to work in construction activity. I would suggest that it would have been much more difficult three days ago to do construction activity when it was -30 degrees in Ottawa than in Newfoundland where it was 12 degrees above that day.

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REF

Monte Solberg

Reform

Mr. Solberg

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has raised a couple of issues.

First, he wants to know whether unemployment insurance as it is presently constituted has been a boon or a problem in the country.

Certainly the premier of Newfoundland would suggest that as it is presently designed it has not served the interests of Newfoundlanders very well. He points to the fact that a generation of people have become dependent on unemployment insurance as it is now. That is not only an economic tragedy but a human tragedy. We must work quickly to change that so that we can save yet another generation from that type of situation.

It is very important to recognize that there is a great difference between an insurance program that puts the onus on individuals to show that they are trying to stay in the work force and setting up different benefits depending on the unemployment rate in particular areas of the country.

I point out that before regionally extended benefits we had unemployment rates in Newfoundland of around 7 per cent. Since we have regionally extended benefits they have gone up, up and up to 20 and 25 per cent. It is very important that we not ignore the lessons of history lest we be doomed to repeat them.

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The Deputy Speaker

The hon. member's time has expired. Before recognizing the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata, I think the hon. member for Bellechasse has something to say, am I right?

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BQ

François Langlois

Bloc Québécois

Mr. Langlois

Yes, Mr. Speaker, I want to rise on a point of order. The next speaker for the Official Opposition is the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata. Like every woman sitting in this House, she is very active and only sickness or some mishap would slow her down just a little. Unfortunately, she broke her ankle during the weekend. So, Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask you to show some leniency and allow the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata to stay seated while she makes her speech.

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The Deputy Speaker

I can assure the hon. member that I see no problem whatsoever. Now, the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata.

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BQ

Suzanne Tremblay

Bloc Québécois

Mrs. Suzanne Tremblay (Rimouski-Témiscouata)

Mr. Speaker, it is an honour for me to speak today in this House, the symbol of Canadian democracy.

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all members of this House who were elected or re-elected, especially the right hon. Prime Minister, the honourable Leader of the Opposition and the hon. member for Calgary Southwest.

My first words will be directed to the constituents of the riding of Rimouski-Témiscouata. I want to thank them for the confidence that they have shown me by choosing me to represent them in the House or that they have expressed to me since I was elected. I will do everything I can to meet their expectations and they can count on my co-operation for any individual or collective project that could contribute to their well-being.

My speech will be made up of two parts. In the first part, I want to remind you of the reasons that brought me to Ottawa and, in the second part, I want to express some comments and questions I have about certain aspects of the Department of Canadian Heritage, of which I am the official critic for the opposition. I will come right to the heart of the subject by reminding you, Mr. Speaker, that you have before you a true sovereignist, one who is determined to work relentlessly in order to defend Quebec's interests. You have before you a sovereignist who, on behalf of the people of Rimouski-Témiscouata, feels that she has the legitimate right to be here in order to claim what is owed to that region and to see to it that it is treated fairly.

Whether the Prime Minister or the hon. member for Calgary Southwest and their parties like it or not, I came here to speak about Quebec sovereignty.

I came here to fight for the MRCs of Mitis, Témiscouata and Rimouski-Neigette and their 37 municipalities in my riding which includes Rimouski, the regional capital of eastern Quebec. Besides government services, you can find in Rimouski one university, the Institut national de recherche scientifique en océanographie, the Institut de marine, one CEGEP, the Quebec Telephone head office, the Rimouski regional hospital and the archdiocesan offices.

I am also here to fight for the five eastern Quebec ridings and all Quebecers.

I stand here as an advocate of Quebec sovereignty. I grew up in Montreal, started a teaching career in Laval University in Quebec City and spent the last 25 years working in a region that honoured me by making me their elected representative. That region is well known for its vibrant cultural life, but it is plagued with deep and lingering economic problems. Up to a few years ago, the citizens there thought they could count on vital communication links for its development, but it had to weather a

devastating attack by the previous government which deprived it of its public television services and cut back its postal and railway services. Ever since that sombre day when Radio-Canada closed its doors there, that region has hardly had any means left to voice its concerns, and its protests have gone unanswered. Everyone knows that we have reached a point where communications are essential community rights.

The people of Rimouski-Témiscouata have had enough of cuts, closings, unemployment, welfare, poverty, bankruptcies, tax increases, not to mention the underground economy, smuggling and violence. These proud, courageous and hard-working people have had enough of a centralizing government which denies that there are differences and disparities between communities. They have long understood that their future depends on appropriate and concrete solutions to their problems. They understand that their sovereignty, Quebec's sovereignty, is the key to their future. In the meantime, they will have the opportunity to say yes again like they did the first time in May 1980. They want the Minister of Canadian Heritage to fairly fulfill his mandate, a mandate which is to protect the cultural and natural heritage so that when the new era comes Quebec can find its heritage untouched. I will now turn briefly to some issues before the Department of Canadian Heritage, that is amateur sport, the National Film Board, official languages, Telefilm Canada, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and copyright.

Now that the winter and summer Olympic Games alternate every second year at the request of American broadcasters and their sponsors, amateur sport will be on the forefront of current events and could be widely talked about in a rather bad light, as we saw recently in the case of Team Canada and figure skating in the United States.

In the present context of economic austerity, Quebecers want more than games, in any case something other than a flag war. They demand, among other things, a review of the athlete status in order to put an end to dubious practices whereby so-called amateurs stash away the thousands of dollars they earn while continuing to receive their amateur sport grant. These grants should go only to those who really need them.

Moreover, since the main decision centres for participation in the Olympics are in Toronto and Calgary, Quebec is asking, and rightly so, for a review of selection procedures in some olympic sports, to do away with discrimination and inequity toward Quebec athletes and others.

Over the last four years, Canadian taxpayers have given some $4 million in grants to Team Canada. Selection of athletes is entirely left to the various coaches and, according to information given in this House by the Minister of Canadian Heritage himself, Team Canada will reveal the names of athletes selected "a few days only before the first match". Why pay for four years if, on the eve of the Olympic Games, we cannot make public the names of the 23 players selected?

Team Canada needs more than a token French speaking assistant coach in charge of relations with the French media. We have to make sure that people like Mario Lemieux will not be eliminated because they are "not good enough"; that those like Alexandre Daigle will not be excluded because they are "too strong-minded"; that those like Sylvie Fréchette will not be disregarded because they refuse to train in Calgary; that those like the Duchesnays-who gave France the gold-will not be considered "too avant-garde" by Canadian judges; finally, that those like Eric Lindros will not be given the red carpet treatment and selected against the rules.

Finally, one has only to think about fencing or figure skating to realize that all amateur sports are not equal. We must recognize that and adopt a grant policy which will protect those sports and ensure an equitable distribution of funds.

As far as official languages are concerned, it is essential that interventions be targeted properly, that they be distinct, that they fulfill specific needs and that they take into account the special situation of each of our two solitudes.

Let us not forget that the Bloc Quebecois came to Ottawa to deal with sovereignty; we are not here to promote bilingualism. For Quebec, the sole purpose of official languages is the proper operation of federal parliamentary and judicial institutions.

However, for the francophone and Acadian community of Canada, the Bloc Quebecois is simply asking for the implementation of section 23 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms entrenched in the Constitution Act of 1982.

I want to make this clear to all Canadians from one ocean to the other and to the other, as our colleague from Yukon likes to say Mr. Speaker, I want you to listen carefully. As you know the English speaking minority of Quebec has always been well treated. These people have a complete guarantee that under a sovereign government in Quebec they will keep all their historic rights.

As critic for Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition I want to make sure that the minority known as la Communauté francophone et acadienne du Canada receives the same treatment and that its rights guaranteed by the Constitution are respected without

having to take legal proceedings and going as far as the Supreme Court of Canada.

Even though it is a magnificent concept, the cinerobotheque recently opened in Montreal has not increased the NFB's market.

Over the years, the NFB has strayed more and more from its original course which was to produce documentaries. The NFB seems to be looking for its raison d'être. It produces fewer films on its own but rather uses the funds it manages to co-produce films in co-operation or in competition with the private sector or Telefilm Canada, as was the case with "The Decline of the American Empire", "Night Zoo" and "Léolo".

On the other hand, the NFB neglects its regional role and budgetary restrictions forced it to reduce the resources and services which regions normally had access to. Preferring glamour to thriftiness, the NFB announced it was closing its regional offices in Rimouski, Chicoutimi, Trois-Rivières, Sherbrooke, Rouyn-Noranda, Charlottetown, Calgary, St. John's and Sydney, but that it will be keeping open those in Paris, London, and New York to distribute its films, something which could be done at a lesser cost by the private sector.

I am asking that the NFB's mandate be re-examined in light of the taxpayers'ability to pay and the need to support a growing film industry in Canada.

As for Telefilm Canada, one can well wonder why it is maintaining at great expense offices in Paris, London, and Los Angeles.

Moreover, through the years-thanks to a lack of control and too much opulence-several of Telefilm's employees have gotten into the habit of attending, sometimes in great numbers, numerous film festivals including the one in Cannes and the film and television fair, as well as the Marché international de la production en télévision and the Marché international de la production et des communications which are held for the same audience and the same market, twice a year in Cannes.

Before considering slashing financial support for the creation of original works, we should review the mandate of Telefim Canada, and ponder the judiciousness of keeping those offices abroad open instead of giving the responsibility for film distribution to the private sector.

As far as the CBC is concerned, we know that in 1990, it was left with a shortfall of $108 million as a result of a decision by the previous government. The president announced unprecedented cuts, closing 11 local or regional TV stations, including those in Rimouski, Matane, and Sept-Îles, and causing the loss of 1,100 jobs, 280 of which were reclassified or lost in eastern Quebec.

These cuts, which had and are still having a negative impact on regional development, did not improve the corporation's financial situation.

It should be noted that, without taking into account the cuts announced in the April 1994 budget, the CBC will have a shortfall of around $42 million in 1993-94; around $32 million in 1994-95; and around $79 million in 1998-99.

It is therefore urgent that we tackle the issue of the financing of the CBC public radio and TV networks.

I am concerned that the CBC is thinking about using the surplus generated by the employee pension fund to offset its deficit for the next two years. You can surely understand that we will oppose any attempt to resolve the CBC's financial woes by shutting down regional stations or by using pension funds for bailout purposes.

Moreover it is all the more important under the circumstances that the next CBC president be selected on the basis of ability rather than on the basis of partisan considerations.

Lastly, the mandate of the CBC must not be viewed strictly in terms of available funds, but equally in terms of the country's linguistic specificity, that is to say in terms of the cultural specificity of the country's two founding peoples.

The Crown corporation is straying from its mandate of public broadcaster because, on the one hand, of the shortfall it must make up and because, on the other hand, of the increasingly commercial approach it is being forced to take. It has modified the content and level of some of its programming to get the viewer ratings it needs to attract advertisers and in turn erase part of its revenue shortfall. It is dipping into an already limited pool of advertisers, especially in Quebec, and getting into questionable competition with private broadcasters.

It is critical that the government review the Crown corporation's mandate and be very vigilant as the CRTC prepares to hold important hearings on speciality services and digital radio broadcasting. The CRTC's rulings will have a major impact on the operation of the radio-television industry. The government must ensure that in making its ruling, the CRTC takes into consideration the country's linguistic specificity and extracts a commitment from cable operators to abide by Canadian content rules and make services available to all Canadians.

Mr. Speaker, it is important to realize that the CRTC's rulings will have a considerable impact on the world of television. They will affect cable subscription costs as well as the way advertising revenues are shared at a time when broadcasters are already worried about their future.

Moving to the complex issue of copyright, I would like to point out that creators are currently out in the cold and that the government will have to act quickly by tabling as soon as possible a bill to correct this unfortunate situation.

As I far as I know, there are two ways of looking at this issue. You can view copyright as a right to reproduce a concrete piece of work-a view commonly held by the Americans and Anglo-Saxons-whereby the higher the quality of the work, the more it is reproduced and the more profitable it is.

Or you can view the very act of creation as taking precedence over any concern for protecting the work that will be produced. This is the view which allows creators to earn money as soon as their work is used, the view favoured in francophone circles.

The Bloc Quebecois believes we should favour the latter and protect copyright for 50 years after the death of the artist on all types of work.

However, we can neither stop progress nor ignore it. So, we must recognize the right to copy privately, but at the same time grant royalties to creators for every blank tape sold as well as for the recording medium. The Société de gestion des droits d'auteur, a collective, could be in charge of administering the royalties.

Further, Mr. Speaker, we should protect neighbouring and residual rights. France recognizes the former. That is how Céline Dion can receive royalties every time they play her rendition of "Power of Love"-to which she has given a personal touch and which she has made famous around the world-in France but not in the US nor in Canada, because neither recognizes neighbouring rights.

As for residual rights, they should be included in this act and also protected for 50 years. These rights relate to the royalties paid to artists as their works are sold to successive owners. This entire area of residuals will have to receive due attention out of fairness for the artists and to sustain the art production market.

The last point I want to get across to the government is that culture is a sensitive area and a financially profitable industry of vital importance to the development of communities. Just thinking about how much the Riopelles, Vigneaults, Voisines, Adams, Sutherlands and Forresters have done for the reputation of Quebec and Canada, it is easy to see that the return on investment in the cultural industry far exceeds that of any other economic activity.

The Bloc Quebecois reiterates that, to promote the cultural identity of each of the founding nations, the government must put an end to costly overlapping in culture and communications, while ensuring the transfer of the budget envelopes for these items, in accordance with the traditional demands of Quebec.

Finally, Mr. Speaker, I ask the government to follow through on the suggestion of the Official Opposition requesting that a committee be struck to review extensively, item by item, expenditures of the Department of Canadian Heritage and of all federal corporations or agencies that come under it.

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The Deputy Speaker

Before going on to questions and comments, I would like to add for the television viewers that you remained seated because of a broken ankle.

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LIB

Ronald J. Duhamel

Liberal

Mr. Ronald J. Duhamel (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Public Works and Government Services)

Mr. Speaker, I wish to thank my colleague for her speech. I would like to make a short comment and then ask two questions.

The comment is very straightforward. I believe that it would be useful, if possible in the near future, to give a comparison of the services anglophones have in Quebec and those francophones have outside Quebec.

I understand your point and I fully agree with the basic premise, but I believe that could help to educate some people. So if the occasion arose and I could assist you, I would be pleased to do so. If you can do it, it would be very useful.

I also note that the hon. member made the following comment, that if Quebec became a sovereign state, the anglophone minority could be assured of having the historic rights which they had and which they enjoy today. I hope that it would be so, but why did so many anglophones leave Quebec during the referendum crisis several years ago and why are so many still leaving, according to the statistics and information I have? If this objective of sovereignty were realized, no doubt more would leave. Obviously, some of them must be wondering if it is true or not.

Secondly, I listened carefully and I heard nothing about what a Bloc Quebecois government would do with respect to native people if Quebec were sovereign. Nevertheless, the First Nations have historic rights. Would you have something to share with us on this subject?

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BQ

Suzanne Tremblay

Bloc Québécois

Mrs. Tremblay

Mr. Speaker, I would like to start by making a comment and thanking the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services for his question.

First of all, minority rights in Quebec have always been guaranteed and protected. You asked me to draw a comparison between francophones and anglophones. I will take only one example, that of the school system.

Anglophones have always managed their own free public school system. They even had a school system managed by English speaking protestants, so that they would not have to mix with French-speaking catholics.

Although the 1982 Constitution guarantees the right of Acadians and other French speaking Canadians to manage their own schools in every province where numbers warrant, those com-

munities had to go all the way to the Supreme Court to force their provinces to merely implement the terms of the 1982 Constitution.

So when Acadians and other French Canadians are treated the same as the anglophone minority in Quebec, I think that Canada will be entitled to sing the national anthem of its choice. In the meantime, I think that the rights of Quebec anglophones are protected by the program of the Parti Quebecois. This is not the place to list their potential rights in a sovereign Quebec. We will leave that to Quebec and Mr. Parizeau when he comes into office, as we all hope.

As far as natives are concerned, I am not the designated critic on this issue. I will leave it to the official critic on aboriginal affairs to state our views on the subject. But it is clear that our native minority has always been treated well in Quebec, too. They have not experienced nearly as many difficulties as in the rest of the country, as the courts can testify to.

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LIB

Ben Serré

Liberal

Mr. Benoît Serré (Timiskaming-French River)

I would also like to congratulate my colleague from Rimouski-Témiscouata for her comments. However, Mr. Speaker, I thought that, during the last election campaign, the party which forms the official opposition had promised Quebecers that it would primarily talk about economic recovery and job creation. Yet, since the opening of this session, that party has only raised the issue of sovereignty.

Is the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata prepared to fulfill the mandate she received from her constituents and co-operate with our government to put Quebecers and Canadians back to work? Otherwise, will she tell them honestly that she is here for one reason, and that is Quebec's independence, rather than its sovereignty?

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BQ

Suzanne Tremblay

Bloc Québécois

Mrs. Tremblay

Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his question, but I want to remind him that I am not here to promote Quebec's separation, but rather its sovereignty, and in French there is an enormous difference between those two concepts.

As regards economic recovery, it just so happens that I am involved in a sector which is absolutely extraordinary for the recovery of the economy. The budget for Canadian Heritage is roughly $3 billion but that sector brings in $22 billion to Canada. Each dollar invested in the cultural sector brings in one dollar in revenue. In some fields you sometime have to spend $200,000 to create one job, but in the cultural sector one dollar will have a return of one dollar. In fact, this sector is the one with the highest return in the economy and it also creates 500,000 jobs across Canada.

What I emphasized throughout my speech was that we must revise mandates, cut the fat in the federal administration, and put an end to trips made three times a year by civil servants to Cannes as well as to the film festival in Berlin at taxpayers'expense. I have rarely seen any civil servant at the international film festival for youth in Rimouski. It does not cost much to go to Rimouski. Yet, no civil servant shows up at that festival, even though it would really not be an expensive proposition, with hotel rooms at $40 a night. But 60 civil servants go to Cannes three times a year and stay in hotels at $200 a night. This is why we must set up a House committee so that members of Parliament are the ones who decide where to cut, instead of relying on suggestions made by civil servants, because they will never cut in their own fat. Have you ever seen anything like this? Therefore, this issue must absolutely be dealt with by a House committee, so that we, members of Parliament, are the ones to decide where to cut out the fat. We must be able to find funding so as not to reduce the budget of Telefilm Canada producers but rather that of those who sell our films and not passively watch the private sector sell our films. This is the kind of sound decision we must make, and not once again go after the performers and the creators. The throne speech is silent on this; there is not a single line about promoting economic recovery in that sector in spite of the fact that we know it has the best performance.

So, I hope the government will prove serious and take proper steps in this direction.

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Subtopic:   Speech From The Throne
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?

The Deputy Speaker

There are three and a half minutes left. You can share this time. The hon. member for Berthier-Montcalm.

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Subtopic:   Speech From The Throne
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BQ

Michel Bellehumeur

Bloc Québécois

Mr. Michel Bellehumeur (Berthier-Montcalm)

First off I would like to congratulate the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata who reminded this House of the first objective Bloc Quebecois members have set for themselves during the last campaign.

Listening to her speech, one or two questions came to my mind. However, given the question of the last speaker I will rephrase it, to make it clearer to the hon. member for Rimouski-Témiscouata, and to the House. As a member of this House, how does she interpret the mandate she received on October 25?

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Subtopic:   Speech From The Throne
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BQ

Suzanne Tremblay

Bloc Québécois

Mrs. Tremblay

I hope I interpret it the same way as everyone else in this House. I came to pave the way for Quebec sovereignty, to explain to all Canadians what we are doing here and what we will be doing afterward. We did not come here to destroy Canada, we came to rebuild it differently by going our own way and making it better, because there really are two countries in Canada. We have to shed our blinkers and face the facts. We have two countries. We say: "Let us leave. Let us try

to negotiate something which would allow our two countries to live side by side and everything will be better for Canada".

I have just remembered the hon. member's question. He wants to know why the anglophones are leaving Quebec. They are leaving because they are scared. It is just fear, because there are English speaking Canadians of other origins coming to Quebec. Even Americans come to Quebec, because life is good there. The food is good, accommodation is good. People who are scared leave Quebec, those who like a challenge are coming in.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Speech From The Throne
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January 24, 1994