May 2, 2001

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The Speaker

As is our practice on Wednesday we will now sing O Canada, and we will be led by the hon. member for Winnipeg—Transcona.

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LIB

Nancy Karetak-Lindell

Liberal

Ms. Nancy Karetak-Lindell (Nunavut, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, the youth of Canada are our future and must be given every opportunity to reach their potential.

Nunavut possesses a fast growing population and a very young population, so making sure our children and youth are well taken care of is a high priority. In partnership with the Government of Canada, the new territory is aiming to do just that.

Nunavut aboriginal human resource development agreement holders are committed to the development of a well functioning, comprehensive core of child care services in Nunavut.

The child care forum held in Iqaluit in September 2000 was attended by child care workers from all over Nunavut and was very productive. Nunavut AHRDA holders are currently entering the implementation phase of the Nunavut child care planning project and I extend to them wishes for every success.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Child Care
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CA

John M. Cummins

Canadian Alliance

Mr. John Cummins (Delta—South Richmond, Canadian Alliance)

Mr. Speaker, with summer approaching Canadians are on the move again. This year they will notice not only the horrendous price of gas compared to the same time last year but the condition of their highways.

The highway infrastructure in the country is falling apart. The present government has a pitiful record on the upkeep of Canada's roads. Last year in British Columbia the government collected some $750 million in gasoline excise taxes yet spent only $400,000.

Recently $60 million was announced for highway improvements in British Columbia, a pittance that ignores the real problems we are facing.

For example, in my neighbourhood a residential street serves as a major highway connecting the Fraser Surrey docks and other major transportation hubs and routes, yet there is no federal money to alleviate the problem. Over 2,000 trucks a day pass through a residential neighbourhood, trucks carrying Lord knows what, yet the Liberal government continues to collect our money and ignore the problem.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Highways
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LIB

Marlene Jennings

Liberal

Mrs. Marlene Jennings (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, on April 10, the Canadian Minister of Finance took part in the inauguration of a fine initiative, the launch of a multimedia CD-ROM. It is on Canada's fiscal policy and was created by two members of the Institute of Applied Economics at l'École des Hautes Études Commerciales.

Essentially, its purpose is to present economics not as a disembodied science but a management and decision making problem.

This CD-ROM constitutes a top notch teaching tool providing access to a broad range of information to aid in understanding Canada's fiscal policy.

My congratulations to the creators of this project, which I hope will set an example for other disciplines in the educational field.

I extend congratulations to the École des Hautes Études Commerciales.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Canada's Fiscal Policy
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LIB

Reg Alcock

Liberal

Mr. Reg Alcock (Winnipeg South, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, the incorporation of information and communications technologies into the operation of government is believed by many to be the greatest challenge facing democratic institutions during the next decade.

Every industrialized democracy around the world has set aggressive deadlines for the completion of their transition to e-government. All are struggling, in large part due to the unanticipated consequences of embracing a technology that changes everything.

There are huge benefits to be realized by those countries that are able to overcome these challenges. I am pleased to point out that in a recent international study of progress to date, Canada has been recognized as first in the world.

Our successes are built upon the efforts of literally thousands of public servants at all three levels of government throughout Canada, public servants who get it and who are not afraid to accept the challenge and search for the value that exists in the proper use of these new tools.

At the same time change needs a champion. In that regard, I wish to congratulate the President of the Treasury Board and her staff for their leadership in this important initiative.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   E-Government
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LIB

Lawrence O'Brien

Liberal

Mr. Lawrence O'Brien (Labrador, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, today I recognize the achievements of Brad Gushue, Mark Nichols, Brent Hamilton, Mike Adam, Jamie Korab and coach Jeff Thomas, the Canadian junior men's curling champions who went on to win the world junior men's curling championship in Ogden, Utah, on March 25.

Mark and Mike are from my Labrador riding. They will be showing their teammates a warm Labrador welcome on their victory tour this week. I congratulate them on a fine performance and extend to them my best wishes on behalf of all Labradorians.

Another Labrador west foursome, Keith Ryan, Garry Pinsent, Mike Ryan and Dennis Langdon, represented Newfoundland and Labrador at this year's senior men's brier.

Labrador west and the Carol Curling Club have always been hot spots for cool winter sports. With spirit and determination, our teams have overcome the distance and expense involved in competing at provincial, national and international levels.

On behalf of all members, I extend my congratulations to the boys for their world class curling achievements.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Curling
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CA

Rob Merrifield

Canadian Alliance

Mr. Rob Merrifield (Yellowhead, Canadian Alliance)

Mr. Speaker, the month of May usually means tulip season in Ottawa, but today we are wearing carnations to recognize Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month.

MS is the most common neurological disease affecting young adults today. Each day three more Canadians are diagnosed with this unpredictable and often debilitating disease.

The causes of MS are still not known but research is getting closer to finding some answers. For those who suffer with MS, treatments are available to modify the course of the disease and promising new therapies are being developed.

The MS Society of Canada is in the middle of its spring fundraising campaign and across the country thousands of Canadians will be participating in MS carnation campaigns as well as walks for MS.

I encourage members of parliament and all Canadians to participate and to give generously to this important cause, because together we can find the answer.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month
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LIB

Carolyn Bennett

Liberal

Ms. Carolyn Bennett (St. Paul's, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, May 7 to 13 marks the celebration of National Nursing Week 2001. This year's theme, “Nurses, Champions for Health”, is significant on two fronts.

The nurses of Canada truly have acted as champions, standing by, supporting and leading Canadians in a collective effort to maintain and improve health.

Their efforts in a very difficult situation have not gone unnoticed. Once again the people of Canada have said that they place more of their trust in nurses than in any other group of professionals.

Just as important as speaking up for patients, nurses have consistently voiced their concerns about the health of our cherished health care system.

During times of significant restructuring and upheaval, nurses in Canada have stood by both patients and the system. They have spoken loudly in defence of the system, especially in support of its public funding. This is at a time when the very same system appears to be extracting a cost from their own health and well-being.

I invite my colleagues to join me in acknowledging National Nursing Week 2001 and saying a warm thank you to the nurses of Canada, our champions for health.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   National Nursing Week
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BQ

Michel Guimond

Bloc Québécois

Mr. Michel Guimond (Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-de-Beaupré—Île-d'Orléans, BQ)

Mr. Speaker, community activity in a neighbourhood or a town speaks most clearly of the dynamism of its people and of their attachment to their community.

In my riding, the Centre communautaire de Beauport, a non-profit corporation, has set itself the task of providing educational, recreational, cultural and sports leadership in order to encourage, support and promote community recreation.

The originality and diversity of the activities organized by an experienced team of employees and over 275 volunteers mean that nearly 15,000 people of all ages can enjoy a whole range of quality activities.

On the occasion of the International Year of Volunteers, I would like to praise the exceptional work done by the employees of the Beauport community centre who, with many volunteers, contribute to the welfare and quality of life of our society.

Without their contribution, many services would stop existing. Their time, energy and generosity does them great credit.

Quebec needs men and women like them.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Centre Communautaire De Beauport
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LIB

Larry Bagnell

Liberal

Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, the Association of Yukon Communities and the FCM will be holding their general meetings this month.

I would like to take this opportunity to celebrate the municipal orders of government in Canada.

I would like to celebrate the great Yukon municipalities of Dawson City, Teslin, Faro, Carmacks, Haines Junction, Mayo, Watson Lake and Whitehorse.

As all of us in parliament work to solve Canada's problems, we should remember that the municipal order of government is the closest to the people and the resources. It has been and will continue to be an valuable partner with us in creating solutions for improving our nation.

When municipalities were created over 100 years ago, the prescription for their governments was paternalistic and stilted. Today I continue to support their efforts to achieve the autonomy and flexibility they need to exercise the powers within their jurisdiction in our rapidly changing modern world.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Municipal Governments
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CA

David Anderson

Canadian Alliance

Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance)

Mr. Speaker, spring has arrived and farmers are in the fields. As always they are looking ahead with anticipation. It seems wheat prices might even rise this spring, but that is immaterial because farmers' grain cannot be marketed.

Durum growers are only allowed to deliver 60% of last year's production and are prohibited from selling the remaining 40% elsewhere. During one of the worst farm income crises ever in the grain industry, the Canadian Wheat Board is forcing farmers to survive on only 60% of their income.

Voluntary Canadian Wheat Board participation would allow farmers to find markets and to process their own grain. Current buyback requirements inhibit producers from selling or processing their own wheat. Farmers must be allowed to find buyers for their grain, especially when the wheat board cannot sell it.

When will the government make the Canadian Wheat Board voluntary so that farmers can sell and process what they grow?

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Canadian Wheat Board
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LIB

Marcel Proulx

Liberal

Mr. Marcel Proulx (Hull—Aylmer, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, on April 5, I had the opportunity to attend a benefit dinner organized by the Association pour l'intégration communautaire de l'Outaouais.

I am very pleased to pay tribute today to the volunteer work done since 1957 by members of this association, and to highlight the efforts of the men and women who daily face challenges to become autonomous.

Founded by a group of parents who wanted to improve the quality of life of their intellectually disabled children, the association has had the same goal for the past 44 years: to advance the cause of intellectual disabilities.

Through the many services made available to persons with intellectual disabilities and their families, the Association pour l'intégration communautaire de l'Outaouais makes it possible for them to become full members of our community.

Long live this association, its president, Lucie Charron, and its 200 volunteers and 28 employees.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Association Pour L'Intégration Communautaire De L'Outaouais
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NDP

Wendy Lill

New Democratic Party

Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP)

Mr. Speaker, in Ottawa 10,000 people with mobility problems rely on Para Transpo to get to work, to school and to see their friends, families and doctors. These Canadians are being held captive in a labour dispute, a dispute caused by privatization.

The drivers for Para Transpo are asking to be treated the same as OC Transpo workers, but the municipality has privatized this essential service and the private company is not treating the workers fairly. It is unacceptable for essential services like Para Transpo to be hived off to the private sector as somehow less important.

Canadians with disabilities should not be at the back of the bus when it comes to transit, especially in a federally regulated transit system like the one in Ottawa.

I call for the federal Minister of Labour to bring in binding arbitration in this dispute. I also call on all MPs from Ottawa to pressure their municipal colleagues to put Para Transpo back in the public sector.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Para Transpo
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BQ

Richard Marceau

Bloc Québécois

Mr. Richard Marceau (Charlesbourg—Jacques-Cartier, BQ)

Mr. Speaker, in a letter published in yesterday's La Presse , the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs said that even if Quebec were a nation in the French sense of the word, it was not necessary to recognize it formally in the Canadian constitution. He went on to add that the Canadian constitution did not even recognize the Canadian nation.

How can the minister not realize that the very existence of a constitution presupposed the existence of a Canadian nation in the eyes and minds of those who wrote it?

If we are to follow his logic, why does the federal government make such a point of calling Ottawa its national capital? Similarly, what are we to make of the holding of a national summit on sport? Should we have doubts about the contents of the National Archives of Canada or of the National Library? What is performed at the National Arts Centre? What is studied at the National Research Council? Worse yet, what is the role of the Department of National Defence?

If the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs wants to be consistent, what is he waiting for to ask his colleagues to stop referring to all—

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Minister Of Intergovernmental Affairs
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The Speaker

The hon. member for York West.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Minister Of Intergovernmental Affairs
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LIB

Judy Sgro

Liberal

Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to inform the House that the federal government's diabetes strategy is progressing well in our commitment to fight diabetes in Canada.

Initiatives are happening throughout Canada, such as the recent announcement by the Minister of Health and the Minister of Justice for regional and national funding in Alberta of close to $12 million. Alberta is part of the national diabetes surveillance system which will yield national statistics and trends in diabetes in Canada. This money also goes toward education and awareness programs to help citizens learn about preventing diabetes and its complications and programs to promote healthy eating and active living.

I say to my friend, Gerry Tuzi, and thousands of others suffering from diabetes, that our government's commitment is to reach our goal of reducing the burden of diabetes and its complications.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Diabetes
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PC

John Herron

Progressive Conservative

Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC)

Mr. Speaker, Elizabeth May, director of the Sierra Club of Canada, is on a hunger strike. Her message is clear: Families residing in Whitney Pier are in danger and need to be relocated.

According to a private sector study released just last week, area soil and water are heavily contaminated and the health and well-being of some of the community residents are at serious risk.

Families residing on Frederick Street, Curry's Lane, Laurier Street and Tupper Street are routinely exposed to approximately 30 carcinogens, well above Health Canada's prescribed limits, including arsenic levels 70 times greater than Health Canada says is acceptable.

Residents in Sydney already experience cancer rates higher than the national average. There is no reason that Health Canada cannot address this issue immediately.

The federal government has a moral and financial obligation to engage and be a partner in the solution. Liberal Nova Scotia MPs have been shamelessly silent in addressing this issue. We call on the government to meet with the residents of this area to ensure that we end the hunger strike of Elizabeth May.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Sierra Club
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CA

Stockwell Day

Canadian Alliance

Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

Mr. Speaker—

Topic:   Oral Question Period
Subtopic:   Health
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Some hon. members

Hear, hear.

Topic:   Oral Question Period
Subtopic:   Health
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The Speaker

Order, please. Everyone will want to hear the lead question from the hon. Leader of the Opposition.

Topic:   Oral Question Period
Subtopic:   Health
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May 2, 2001