Bernard VALCOURT

VALCOURT, The Hon. Bernard, P.C., Q.C., B.A., LL.B., DHC

Personal Data

Party
Conservative
Constituency
Madawaska--Restigouche (New Brunswick)
Birth Date
February 18, 1952
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Valcourt
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=5d65749e-0cdb-4c03-88d4-f57a905acc33&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
lawyer, notary

Parliamentary Career

September 4, 1984 - October 1, 1988
PC
  Madawaska--Victoria (New Brunswick)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of State for Science and Technology (November 1, 1984 - November 24, 1985)
  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue (November 25, 1985 - June 29, 1986)
  • Minister of State (Small Businesses and Tourism) (June 30, 1986 - January 29, 1989)
  • Minister of State (Indian Affairs and Northern Development) (August 27, 1987 - January 29, 1989)
November 21, 1988 - September 8, 1993
PC
  Madawaska--Victoria (New Brunswick)
  • Minister of State (Small Businesses and Tourism) (June 30, 1986 - January 29, 1989)
  • Minister of State (Indian Affairs and Northern Development) (August 27, 1987 - January 29, 1989)
  • Minister of Consumer and Corporate Affairs (January 30, 1989 - July 4, 1989)
  • Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (February 23, 1990 - April 20, 1991)
  • Minister of Employment and Immigration (April 21, 1991 - June 24, 1993)
  • Minister of National Health and Welfare (June 18, 1993 - June 24, 1993)
  • Minister of Labour (June 25, 1993 - November 3, 1993)
  • Minister of Employment and Immigration (June 25, 1993 - November 3, 1993)
May 2, 2011 - August 2, 2015
CPC
  Madawaska--Restigouche (New Brunswick)
  • Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) (May 18, 2011 - February 21, 2013)
  • Minister of State (La Francophonie) (May 18, 2011 - February 21, 2013)
  • Associate Minister of National Defence (July 4, 2012 - February 21, 2013)
  • Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development (February 22, 2013 - November 3, 2015)
May 2, 2011 -
CPC
  Madawaska--Restigouche (New Brunswick)
  • Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) (May 18, 2011 - February 21, 2013)
  • Minister of State (La Francophonie) (May 18, 2011 - February 21, 2013)
  • Associate Minister of National Defence (July 4, 2012 - February 21, 2013)
  • Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development (February 22, 2013 - November 3, 2015)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 363 of 364)


March 27, 1985

Mr. Valcourt:

That was Premier Hatfield.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   STATUTE LAW (CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS) AMENDMENT ACT MEASURE TO AMEND
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March 27, 1985

Mr. Valcourt:

Of course, Mr. Speaker, Bill C-27 now being considered comes under attack by the Official Opposition and the New Democratic Party. I do not want to prolong the debate, but the Opposition is trying to prove that Bill C-27 is a very minor piece of legislation which is not quite in the same league as the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Well, Mr. Speaker, they have to admit that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms adopted in 1982 does enshrine the rights and freedoms of all Canadians and did make radical changes in our society. Courts, provincial legislatures, the Federal Government and all citizens are affected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, because the Constitution, our most basic law, acknowledges those rights in no uncertain terms.

They now claim that the Government is not doing anything. Well, none of the critics has mentioned the fact, among others, that as recently as September 14, 1984 the Supreme Court of Canada rendered a decision in the Southam-Hunter case with respect to the powers of entry and inspection provided under some federal Acts. In less than four months the Government took into consideration the principles of that decision and embodied them in Bill C-27 which contains amendments related to powers of entry and search as well as powers of entry and inspection.

As a lawyer, Mr. Speaker, I can assure my colleagues in the House that those amendments stemming from the Supreme Court of Canada decision in the Southam case are more than welcome. The critics of the Official Opposition or of the New Democratic Party can say what they like, but the fact is that the Government did not wait for years before taking action, with the result that the amendments can now be found in Bill C-27.

Mr. Speaker, I also deplore the fact that the official critic of the Liberal Party has urged all Canadians from coast to coast to boycott the hearings of the major committee duly appointed to look into the document entitled "Equity Issues in Federal Law, A discussion paper", that was recently published and tabled by the Minister of Justice. This committee, made up of representatives from the Government, the Official Opposition and the NDP, was asked to consider some truly important issues in the light of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Of course, our hon. friends from the Liberal Party will regard that as evidence of inaction and lack of leadership, claiming that the Government should put an end to its consultations and take some strong positive action. What the Official Opposition critic is saying is that we should not seek the Canadian public's views on the important issues raised in this document, including retirement, status, age of majority, sexual preferences of individuals. These critics are consistent with the philosophy of the Liberal Party which claims to be the sole possessor of all knowledge and the supreme judge of all truth

March 27, 1985

and virtue ... Yet, the very first lines in our Charter of Rights and Freedoms provide, under Section 1, that these rights and freedoms are-

-subject only to such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.

Mr. Speaker, no government, even one controlling 211 seats in the House, can rightfully claim that it has the exclusive knowledge of what is good for Canadians.

Mr. Speaker, you are signalling that I am about to run out of time. I urge all my hon. colleagues, irrespective of their party affiliation, and even my learned friend the Hon. Member for Bourassa (Mr. Rossi) to contribute positively to this debate on Bill C-27 and to refer it without delay to the Standing Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs for further study and possible improvements.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   STATUTE LAW (CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS) AMENDMENT ACT MEASURE TO AMEND
Full View Permalink

March 27, 1985

Mr. Valcourt:

Mr. Speaker, that is what I am going to do. I listened with attention to the comments made by the Hon. Member for York South-Weston (Mr. Nunziata) in reply to the speech of the Hon. Minister of Justice (Mr. Crosbie) and I was saying how amazed I was at the rhetoric.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   STATUTE LAW (CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS) AMENDMENT ACT MEASURE TO AMEND
Full View Permalink

March 27, 1985

Mr. Bernard Valcourt (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of State for Science and Technology):

Mr. Speaker, as the Member for Madawaska-Victoria, I welcome this opportunity to rise in support of the motion by the Minister of Justice (Mr. Crosbie) for second reading of Bill C-27, legislation aimed at amending certain federal Acts to bring them into line with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. However, Mr. Speaker, although I have already had an opportunity, as Parliamentary Secretary, to take part in the adjournment debate, this is the first time in this House, that I have a chance to speak to my constituents, and I want to take advantage of this opportunity to thank the people of Madawaska-Victoria for having given me the privilege of representing them here in Parliament, and also to describe briefly for my hon. colleagues the riding of Madawaska-Victoria.

My riding is located in the northwestern part of New Brunswick. To the west it borders on the Province of Quebec and to the south on the State of Maine, in the United States. My riding extends along the St. John River from the Quebec border to Perth, Andover, and has a population of about 57,000. Seventy-five per cent are Francophones and of French ethnic origin, while 25 per cent have English as their mother tongue. The federal riding of Madawaska-Victoria covers six provincial ridings, five of which are represented by provincial Members in the Government of the Hon. Richard Hatfield.

Mr. Speaker, following the example of some of my colleagues, I would like to explain to the Members of this House that Madawaska-Victoria is a very special riding, because the people belong to what we refer to as the legendary republic of Madawaska, and also because of those hardworking people in the Victoria, Tobique area.

Mr. Speaker, my constituents are mainly engaged in the agro-food business and forestry. I wish I could be as eloquent as some of my colleagues have been with respect to their own ridings, in describing Madawaska-Victoria as a region with warmhearted people, beautiful rivers and marvelous landscapes. However, the people of Madawaska-Victoria also have some major problems. The statistics are nothing to be particularly proud about, but I feel they reflect the legacy we received from the previous Government.

My riding's per capita income is lower than the provincial average, and need I add, Mr. Speaker, that the average per capita income in New Brunswick is much lower than the Canadian average. The unemployment rate in my riding is

March 27, 1985

Statute Law Amendment Act

very high, in fact it is higher than the provincial and national average.

We hope this situation, which has existed for a long time in Madawaska-Victoria, is going to change, and we are confident that by electing this Government on September 4 we are now on the right track.

The people of Madawaska-Victoria have traditionally supported the Official Opposition in federal elections, and they have seen what good this has done them. Mr. Speaker, that is the context in which should be considered my election on September 4 and for which I am truly grateful to my constituents in Madawaska-Victoria. They gave a massive support to the Progressive Conservative Party at the last election and gave their confidence to a team led by the Prime Minister (Mr. Mulroney). During my mandate and during this Parliament, I really intend to prove worthy of their confidence by discharging my responsibilities as best I can.

Mr. Speaker, after being in power for almost seven months, even if we are young and inexperienced members, we follow the proceedings in the House and we are tempted to make some comments ... I listened carefully to the comments made by the Hon. Member for York South-Weston (Mr. Nunziata) a while ago in reply to the speech made by the Minister of Justice (Mr. Crosbie). I also heard the criticisms of my colleague, the Hon. Member for Burnaby (Mr. Robinson). Certain things were brought out in the speech made by the spokesman of the official opposition.

It is clear from their speeches since September 4 that they are frustrated after being decimated throughout the country, but when I see in this House the logic and rhetoric of the Liberal Party, I am grateful that my electors had enough wisdom to elect a member of the Progressive Conservative party. I thank the Canadian people for having elected a government which has avoided the Liberal Party rhetoric.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   STATUTE LAW (CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS) AMENDMENT ACT MEASURE TO AMEND
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March 15, 1985

Mr. Bernard Valcourt (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of State for Science and Technology):

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased today to speak to the motion now under consideration by the House with respect to the report of the Special Joint Committee on Senate Reform. One thing that struck me is that this issue was not even on our agenda during the last election campaign when Canadians gave massive support to our Prime Minister (Mr. Mulroney) and our party. Earlier today, the Hon. Member for Glengarry-Prescott-Russell (Mr. Boudria) referred to the 338 promises made by our party, yet none had anything to do with the Senate. On the contrary, we promised Canadians new leadership and that is why, on November 8, the Minister of Finance (Mr. Wilson) set a new course for Canada. There was nothing about Senate reform on our agenda because we thought it was a lot more important to

March 15, 1985

get the economy back on an even keel. Then, all of a sudden, Liberal senators in the other place, frustrated at having been turfed right out by Canadians from coast to coast, started behaving like a Government in exile, anxious to thwart the will of duly elected Members of Parliament. Mr. Speaker, that was-

Senate Reform

Topic:   PRIVATE MEMBERS' BUSINESS-MOTIONS
Subtopic:   MOTION TO NOTE REPORT OF SPECIAL JOINT COMMITTEE
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