HUBBARD, The Hon. Charles, B.A., B.Ed., M.A.

Personal Data

Miramichi (New Brunswick)
Birth Date
October 29, 1940
school principal

Parliamentary Career

October 25, 1993 - April 27, 1997
  Miramichi (New Brunswick)
June 2, 1997 - October 22, 2000
  Miramichi (New Brunswick)
November 27, 2000 - May 23, 2004
  Miramichi (New Brunswick)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (January 13, 2003 - December 11, 2003)
June 28, 2004 - November 29, 2005
  Miramichi (New Brunswick)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport (October 7, 2005 - February 5, 2006)
January 23, 2006 - September 7, 2008
  Miramichi (New Brunswick)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport (October 7, 2005 - February 5, 2006)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 43 of 46)

April 18, 1997

Mr. Charles Hubbard (Miramichi, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, this is National Volunteer Week.

As members of Parliament we must acknowledge the tremendous contributions that many Canadians make in improving the lot of their fellow citizens. Time is one of our most precious commodities. It is important that all of us use this time effectively and efficiently.

Across Canada many Canadians budget some of their time in an effort to enhance their communities by serving on boards, in providing recreation, in coaching, with youth programs, in visiting the sick and providing services that would cost our communities

many thousands of dollars. Volunteerism, the offering of one's time to the community, offers all of us a tremendous contribution.

Today we salute these volunteers for their efforts and those people who offer their services to charities.

I would like to challenge all Canadians to reflect on this use of time and consider the importance of volunteerism.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   National Volunteer Week
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December 5, 1996

Mr. Charles Hubbard (Miramichi, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, the province of New Brunswick and my riding of Miramichi take great pride in our leading role in the field of computer technology and communications.

The premier of New Brunswick, Frank McKenna, together with the New Brunswick Telephone Company and Fundy Cable have co-ordinated their efforts to provide services and opportunities for the people of our province. The New Brunswick Community College, Miramichi, has received national recognition for its leadership in developing programs in multimedia technology, imaging, animation and virtual reality.

There is no secret to New Brunswick's success in attracting leading edge companies and call centres. NB Tel has digital equipment and some of the best fibre optics communications systems in the world. Our province has the economic environment to pursue and attract industries in the 21st century. I would like to inform the House that New Brunswick and the Miramichi are opened for business.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Communications
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October 31, 1996

Mr. Charles Hubbard (Miramichi, Lib.)

Madam Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 34, I have the honour to present in both official languages to the House, a report from the Canadian branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association concerning the 42nd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference which was held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from August 17 to 24, 1996.

Topic:   Routine Proceedings
Subtopic:   Interparliamentary Delegations
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May 3, 1996

Mr. Charles Hubbard (Miramichi, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, being from Atlantic Canada, it is certainly important for us to present our views on the employment insurance act. It is particularly important

to bring to the House some of the important concerns we have in Atlantic Canada.

As Liberals, we have always prided ourselves in introducing the original unemployment insurance bill, changing it in the 1970s and promoting and encouraging it, and to see that Canadians who are unable to find work are protected by legislation and by a program that will enable them to have a satisfactory standard of living.

Since the Liberal Party formed this government, we have been involved in discussions across the country through the HRD committee and through our members of Parliament meeting with constituents to discuss the ramifications and look at their concerns about unemployment.

Jobs are the major concern of many Canadians. Many of our young people, especially those in the 15-24 age group, have great difficulties finding jobs. Nearly 10 per cent of our labour force at any given time has difficulty finding work.

In Atlantic Canada, as in the rest of the nation, people do not want to be unemployed. They would prefer to find work, to have steady income. We as members of Parliament and as a government must attempt to bring forward measures to encourage programs, to develop an environment that will enable Canadians to find satisfactory and worthwhile forms of employment.

Since the bill was originally introduced last December, most of us went home to our constituencies and held town hall meetings. We attempted to find the concerns with the legislation originally introduced.

In Atlantic Canada there were two major concerns. Some people were concerned with what is called the gap, the idea that weeks were being presented on a consecutive basis. If one were to file for unemployment, HRDC would look at the consecutive weeks of work. In many cases in Atlantic Canada that was a major problem.

Others were concerned with what is called the intensity rule. It is the concept that those who filed annually or were unemployed annually were being penalized because jobs in their areas were not available year round.

In Atlantic Canada a lot of jobs are seasonal in nature. We do not have seasonal workers, we have seasonal jobs. In the forest, the fishery and the tourist industries people generally are only able to work when the season is right. When three feet of ice covers Miramichi Bay it is impossible to fish. When the snow is four feet deep it is impossible to conduct forestry activities. Even though New Brunswick has promoted winter activities in recreation and tourism, this industry is basically one which is conducted in the summer.

The committee which studied the bill when it was reintroduced has come up with solutions to the gap in the system. The system will apply so that one may go back 26 weeks to pick the best weeks that will add up to the required number of weeks in order to qualify for unemployment insurance. The committee also recommended that the intensity rule would only apply to those with family incomes of over $26,000.

We as Liberals are able to protect those people in society. We have not been able to bring forward a guaranteed annual income, but we certainly have brought forward a system of protection so that those who are most needy are able to gain the most benefits from the program.

There are some other positive aspects to the bill. The system of hours of work for example will assist many people in terms of qualifying. Many workers in the past who had small numbers of hours in any given week were not allowed to count those hours toward their benefits. Now all hours will qualify. For those who might criticize that system we must point out that those who have paid in on an hourly basis and are unable to draw because they are students or are involved in a short term enterprise may apply for a refund of their contributions. The hours system is good because those who work long hours for example in the construction industry will be able to use the 35 hours as the basis of a week.

There are five cornerstones here which will help people who are unemployed. There is the system of wage subsidies and earning supplements. More money is being put into the self-employment assistance program. More than 45,000 people across the country are involved in becoming entrepreneurs and developing their own companies and businesses, thereby being able to employ others and continue in full time employment. Money is going to be put toward skills and loans grants for enabling people to further their job skills to better qualify for employment.

There will be a fund which will enable communities to participate in providing work. The fund will enable environmental, community and other groups to develop programs and improve their communities. They will use money from the fund in order to make their area a better place in which to live.

I have listened to members opposite. I know they have many concerns, as we in Atlantic Canada have many concerns. We are concerned with the fact that people need jobs. By the same token we are concerned about the fact that people need help when those jobs are not available.

We must respect those 90 per cent of Canadians who on any given day are working full time and who through their contributions to the system are paying 3 per cent of their wages into a fund which will help those who are unemployed.

This week the fishermen in Atlantic Canada, especially in my area, went out in their boats for their annual fishing season. The fishermen's UI is separate from the major part of the program.

I hope when we eventually bring before the government an unemployment insurance system for fishermen that we will be able to have a dialogue and hear their concerns. It will bring to the people of Atlantic Canada and those on the west coast about whom they spoke this morning a program which will enable them to remain a viable part of our economy. It will enable our fishermen to go out and fish each summer. The fishery is a very important part of our Canadian economy.

I support the bill. It certainly is not perfect. There are some members who would like to have a perfect bill. We never have perfection but we as Liberals try to work toward that degree of perfection. We try to work toward the concept that we as a party and as a government will look after those people who are most in need. We want to assure them of our concern and support of their best interests.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Employment Insurance Act
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April 23, 1996

Mr. Charles Hubbard (Miramichi, Lib.)

Mr. Speaker, a major problem in the country today is the concentration of economic power in the boardrooms of major corporations whose sole business is to maximize profits.

We are lobbied today by banks, an industry that has made billions in profits while using automation to lay off thousands of employees to now enter the field of auto leasing.

It is important for our local car dealers that major banks not be permitted to enter the leasing markets. They believe it would be a conflict of interest, as banks are their major source of financing. They are concerned that they will jeopardize their chances of obtaining financing from the banks if they are forced to compete with the banks in the same market.

We cannot afford to have the banks take more jobs away from hardworking Canadians. I ask all members to support car dealers in their opposition to banks' entering the field of leasing.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Auto Leasing
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