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37th PARLIAMENT, 1st SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 090

CONTENTS

Tuesday, October 2, 2001




1005
V     Environment and Sustainable Development
V         The Speaker
V ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
V     Committees of the House
V         Procedure and House Affairs
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Petitions
V         Via Rail
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V     Questions on the Order Paper
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V     Request for Emergency Debate
V         National Defence
V         Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Speaker's Ruling
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Peter Adams

1010
V         The Speaker
V Routine Proceedings
V     Committees of the House
V         Procedure and House Affairs
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V         (Motion agreed to)
V GOVERNMENT ORDERS
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Terrorism
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)

1015
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)

1020
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough

1025
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)

1030

1035
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis

1040
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)

1045

1050
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Hon. John Manley

1055
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Lib.)

1100

1105
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR)
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte

1110
V         Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP)
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)

1115

1120

1125
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)

1130
V         Mr. Brian Pallister

1135
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Mr. Brian Pallister

1140
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)

1145

1150
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby--Douglas, NDP)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde

1155
V         Mr. Antoine Dubé (Lévis-et-Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, BQ)

1200

1205
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR)

1210

1215
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)
V         

1220

1225
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)

1230
V         

1235
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)
V         Mr. Svend Robinson
V         Mr. Dick Proctor (Palliser, NDP)

1240

1245
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)

1250
V         Mr. Dick Proctor
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville--Musquodoboit Valley--Eastern Shore, NDP)
V         Mr. Dick Proctor
V         Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.)

1255

1300
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)

1305
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Mac Harb
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)

1310

1315
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal (Surrey Central, Canadian Alliance)

1320

1325
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)

1330
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal
V         Hon. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke—Lakeshore, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal
V         Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance)
V         

1335

1340
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Keith Martin

1345
V         Mr. Werner Schmidt (Kelowna, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Keith Martin
V         Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Keith Martin
V         Mr. John McKay (Scarborough East, Lib.)

1350

1355
V STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS
V     Family Services Canada
V         Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.)
V     Agriculture
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance)

1400
V     International Day of Older Persons
V         Hon. Denis Paradis (Brome—Missisquoi, Lib.)
V     Victims of Crime
V         Mr. Guy St-Julien (Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik, Lib.)
V     Communities in Bloom
V         Mr. Paul Steckle (Huron—Bruce, Lib.)
V     Fisheries
V         Mr. John Cummins (Delta—South Richmond, Canadian Alliance)
V     Robert Bourassa
V         Mr. Serge Marcil (Beauharnois—Salaberry, Lib.)

1405
V         The Speaker
V     Éric Lucas
V         Mr. Stéphane Bergeron (Verchères—Les-Patriotes, BQ)
V      Byelections in Quebec
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.)
V     The Environment
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V     Byelections in Quebec
V         Mr. Robert Bertrand (Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, Lib.)

1410
V     House of Commons
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP)
V     Violence
V         Ms. Pauline Picard (Drummond, BQ)
V     Quebec Byelections
V         Mr. André Harvey (Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, Lib.)
V     National Defence
V         Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR)

1415
V ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Grant Hill (Macleod, Canadian Alliance)

1420
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Grant Hill (Macleod, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V     The Economy
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)

1425
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V     National Security
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)

1430
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V     National Security
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V     Employment Insurance
V         Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)

1435
V         Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)
V     National Security
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V     Canadian Airline Industry
V         Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V         Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ)

1440
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     Human Resources
V         Mr. Joe Peschisolido (Richmond, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)
V         Mr. Joe Peschisolido (Richmond, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)
V     The Environment
V         Mr. Alan Tonks (York South—Weston, Lib.)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1445
V         Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. André Bachand (Richmond—Arthabaska, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Lynn Myers (Parliamentary Secretary to the Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gary Lunn (Saanich—Gulf Islands, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.)
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)

1450
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)

1455
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)
V     International Aid
V         Mr. Bill Graham (Toronto Centre—Rosedale, Lib.)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V     Multiculturalism
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)

1500
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V     The Environment
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V     Health
V         Mr. Stan Dromisky (Thunder Bay—Atikokan, Lib.)
V         Hon. Allan Rock (Minister of Health, Lib.)

1505
V Government Orders
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Terrorism
V         Mr. Bryon Wilfert (Oak Ridges, Lib.)

1510

1515
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ)

1520

1525
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral
V         Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ)

1530

1535
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)

1540
V         Mr. Claude Bachand
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Claude Bachand
V         Ms. Aileen Carroll (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)

1545

1550
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)

1555
V         Ms. Aileen Carroll
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)

1600
V         Ms. Aileen Carroll
V         Mr. Andrew Telegdi (Kitchener—Waterloo, Lib.)

1605

1610
V         Mr. Rob Merrifield (Yellowhead, Canadian Alliance)

1615

1620
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)
V         Mr. Rob Merrifield
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy

1625
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick

1630

1635
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.)

1640
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick
V     Business of the House
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         (Motion agreed to)
V         Mr. Geoff Regan
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         (Motion agreed to)
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Terrorism
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.)

1645

1650
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.)

1655
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney
V         Mr. Paul Bonwick (Simcoe—Grey, Lib.)

1700

1705

1710
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Paul Bonwick
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Paul Bonwick

1715
V         Hon. Lorne Nystrom (Regina—Qu'Appelle, NDP)

1720

1725
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)

1730
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V     International Boundary Waters Treaty Act
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V     (Division 144)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Bill read the third time and passed)
V     Nuclear Fuel Waste Act
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Garry Breitkreuz
V         Mr. Pierre Brien
V         Mr. Yvon Godin
V         Mr. Jay Hill
V     (Division 145)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)
V     Canada—Costa Rica Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Garry Breitkreuz

1805
V         Mr. Pierre Brien
V         Mr. Yvon Godin
V         Mr. Jay Hill
V         Mr. Charlie Penson
V         Mr. James Moore
V         Mr. Scott Reid
V         Mr. David Anderson
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton
V         Mr. Deepak Obhrai
V         Mr. Rahim Jaffer
V         Mr. James Rajotte
V         Mr. Ted White
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick
V         Mr. Rob Anders
V     (Division 146)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee.)
V     Export Development Act
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         Mr. Garry Breitkreuz
V         Mr. Pierre Brien
V         Mr. Yvon Godin
V         Mr. Jay Hill

1810
V     (Division 147)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V PRIVATE MEMBERS' BUSINESS
V     All-Numeric Dates Act
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)

1815

1820
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         Mr. Ken Epp
V         Mr. Claude Drouin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry, Lib.)

1825

1830
V         Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance)

1835

1840
V         Mr. Stéphane Bergeron (Verchères--Les-Patriotes, BQ)

1845

1850
V         Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP)

1855
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR)

1900

1905
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)

1910
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V Adjournment Proceedings
V     [------]
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Jeannot Castonguay (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, Lib.)

1915
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)






CANADA

House of Commons Debates


VOLUME 137 
NUMBER 090 
1st SESSION 
37th PARLIAMENT 

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Tuesday, October 2, 2001

Speaker: The Honourable Peter Milliken

    The House met at 10 a.m.


Prayers


*   *   *

  +(1005)  

[English]

+Environment and Sustainable Development

+

    The Speaker: I have the honour to lay upon the table, pursuant to subsection 23(3) of the Auditor General Act, the report of the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development to the House of Commons for the year 2001.

[Translation]

    This report is permanently referred to the Standing Committee on the Environment and Sustainable Development.


+ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

[Routine Proceedings]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Committees of the House

+Procedure and House Affairs

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present the 29th report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs regarding the membership and associate membership of some committees, and I would like to move concurrence at this time.

[Translation]

+-

    The Speaker: Does the hon. member have unanimous consent of the House to move the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Petitions

+-Via Rail

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present two more petitions from citizens of the Peterborough area who would like to see VIA service restored between Toronto and Peterborough.

    The petitioners point out that this would help Canada meet its commitments in the Kyoto accord.

    They also point out that this service would improve the economy of the Greater Toronto area and of the Peterborough area and would improve, in particular, employment mobility in the Peterborough area.

    The petitioners are heartened by the transport minister's welcome of the Ontario government's decision to resume funding for municipal transit.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Questions on the Order Paper

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I suggest that all questions be allowed to stand.

    The Speaker: Is that agreed?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Request for Emergency Debate

+-National Defence

[S. O. 52]
+-

    Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 52, I move that this House do now adjourn to consider Canada's military readiness in light of the likelihood that the Canadian armed forces will have to participate in the war against terrorism.

    The rationale behind the motion is that given the recent attacks, which constitute a genuine emergency under Standing Order 52(6)(a), we need to have a debate to keep the public informed and to allow members in the House to have a constructive debate that will guide the government in its deliberations in the future. This is critical to the lives of our military personnel.

*   *   *

+-Speaker's Ruling

[Speaker's Ruling]
+-

    The Speaker: The Chair has no doubt about the importance of the issue raised by the hon. member for Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca in his application for an emergency debate. However, I note that today is a supply day and that the motion that is about to be proposed by one of the opposition parties in the House deals with terrorism.

    Accordingly, even if I were otherwise inclined to grant the hon. member's request, given the subject matter of the debate today I do not believe it is one that meets the exigencies of the standing order. Accordingly, I am not inclined to allow the application at this time.

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I wonder if I could seek unanimous consent to return to motions under routine proceedings.

  +-(1010)  

+-

    The Speaker: Does the House give its consent to return to motions?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.


+-Routine Proceedings

[Routine Proceedings]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Committees of the House

+-Procedure and House Affairs

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would move concurrence in the 29th report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs that I presented earlier this day.

+-

    The Speaker: Does the hon. member have the unanimous consent of the House to propose the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    The Speaker: The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)


+-GOVERNMENT ORDERS

[Supply]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Terrorism

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP) moved:

That this House

(a) condemn the terrorist attacks in the United States on September 11, 2001, as crimes against humanity, and call for the perpetrators to be brought to justice in accordance with international law and within the framework of the United Nations;

(b) endorse the objectives of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001) and call upon the government, in accordance with this resolution, to deliver a report to the U.N. Security Council Committee, within 90 days, setting out the steps Canada will take to implement resolution 1373, and further direct the government to table this report in the House; and

(c) direct the government to table in the House, within 90 days, a report setting out the steps Canada will take to implement an action plan, including detailed budgets and timetables, to fight the rising tide of intolerance and racism, directed against Arab and Muslim Canadians, in the aftermath of the September 11th terrorist attacks.

    She said: Mr. Speaker, it is with apprehension and alarm over a new wave of violence that is about to sweep over humanity that I rise today to introduce the NDP opposition day motion, seconded by the member for Winnipeg--Transcona.

    The motion condemns the terrorist attacks in the United States on September 11 as crimes against humanity and we reiterate our call for the perpetrators to be brought to justice in accordance with international law and under the auspices of the United Nations.

    We also call for the government to endorse the objectives of the United Nations Security Council resolution No. 1373, which calls for the Canadian government to report back to the United Nations within 90 days on its progress in implementing a wide range of anti-terrorism measures.

    We ask that our government simultaneously table Canada's 90 day report in the House.

    Mr. Speaker, I neglected to say at the outset that I will be splitting my time with the member for Winnipeg North Centre.

    Finally, our motion directs the government to also table within 90 days a report setting out the steps that Canada will take to implement an action plan, including detailed budgets and timetables to fight the rising tide of intolerance and racism directed against Arab and Muslim Canadians.

    The New Democratic Party, along with a wide range of voices, have been calling for the United Nations to be the primary body through which we direct the global response to terrorism.

    Indeed, international law, under the auspices of the UN, is the only legal way that we can proceed. The United Nations charter is clear that no country or coalition of countries, no matter how broad, can take the law into its own hands. Put more simply, for very good reason it is illegal for anyone to act as judge, jury and executioner. Countries that flout international law must be on notice that military intervention is an option open to the international community but how we reach any such decision is critically important.

    As we know, the world is in the process of establishing a world criminal court but the United Nations already has the means to establish international tribunals. We must therefore proceed with the sure moral footing of an independent tribunal, one that can assess the facts and determine the punishment in an open and democratic manner. To proceed otherwise is to descend to the lawlessness we abhor, to risk creating a new generation of martyrs, of terrorist fanatics, and to risk expanding the cycle of revenge that breeds the terrifying violence visited on the United States three weeks ago.

    The United Nations is willing and able to accept its responsibility. The most recent UN Security Council resolution reaffirms its unequivocal condemnation of the terrorist attacks and it unanimously adopts a wide ranging comprehensive resolution with steps and strategies to combat international terrorism.

    The security council recognizes that we need to do more than just talk. We need verifiable action. The requirement that countries report back within 90 days on the progress they have made is something the New Democratic Party supports. Today we call on the government to show the same respect to the people of Canada and table that same report here in the House of Commons.

    We will no doubt have questions. We will undoubtedly have disagreements on some specifics of how the security council resolutions are implemented in Canada but we support its main thrust.

    The third aspect of our motion today is the most immediate to the many Canadians who have felt the backlash of discrimination and scapegoating since the September 11 tragedy. Many are Canadian immigrants and visible minorities from the Arab world and from Central and South Asia.

    I want to briefly tell the House of an experience I had last week, a meeting with representatives from that community.

    On very short notice in Toronto, about two dozen Arab Canadian community leaders came together to share their experiences of the last three weeks with myself and Ontario NDP deputy leader Marilyn Churley. These are people, some of whom have been here for generations and others more recent arrivals, who are fiercely proud to be Canadians, people who have often risked their lives to get here and people who are working hard to build this country. Yet, in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attack, they are people themselves under attack for no other reason than their race, religion or ethnicity.

  +-(1015)  

    One father described his 12 year old son. His first name was Osama. It was heartbreaking to hear about that little boy begging his parents to change his name to Michael. We heard the account of another child, a 7 year old, whose name was also Osama. Sensing the backlash and the growing tide of intolerance, his teacher suggested that from now on he would be called Sam. We need Canadians to know that Osama is a Canadian name, that Mohammed is a Canadian name and that worshipping in a mosque is a Canadian tradition.

    I was deeply moved by the depth of the pain that these new Canadians expressed for the victims of the terrorist attacks in the United States, but also the pain they expressed for the backlash that they and their families had experienced, the backlash that has been visited upon them and their communities since September 11.

    Many of these people have been victims of violence in their own countries of origin and yet their response has not been to demand vengeance but rather to express sympathy, peace and to search out deeper understanding among all Canadians and all members of the human family. We must learn from their experience, and today we call upon the Canadian government to develop a detailed action plan that brings citizens together in a dialogue for tolerance. We must reinforce the best of Canadian values and strengthen the bonds of tolerance.

    We must let all Canadians know that prejudice is not a Canadian value and that racism will not be tolerated. I urge all members of the House to join with the New Democratic Party today in embracing Canada's multicultural reality, our commitment to internationalism and our commitment to the rule of law.

    In conclusion, I will be splitting my time, Mr. Speaker, with the member for Winnipeg North Centre.

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    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I congratulate the leader of the New Democratic Party for her speech. I also congratulate her for the comments she made yesterday, condemning the comments made by Sunera Thobani who said that today in the world the United States was the most dangerous and most powerful global force unleashing horrific levels of violence and then went on to say many other things that were unacceptable in this changing climate due to the events of September 11. I believe the leader of the NDP did a good thing by condemning that.

    I also believe the New Democrats have brought forward a worthwhile motion today. I think all of us on the opposition side appreciate it and hope there is wide agreement with this debate today.

  +-(1020)  

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    Ms. Alexa McDonough: Mr. Speaker, the member has underscored very ably why it is so important that at a time like this that we appeal to people's sense of tolerance and understanding. It is clear that we have to find deeper meaning in what is happening, and that we have generated cycles of violence. It is clear that we will not combat racism and have a peaceful world in which to raise our children unless we search for that deeper meaning and that tolerance in the hearts of the human family.

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    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I too want to congratulate the leader of the New Democratic Party for her speech today. I certainly share in her comments in relation to Canadian citizens who come here from other countries and who have an ethnic origin that is different from others. Whether for instance it be Muslims or Canadians of Arab origin, I strongly share the view that we must as Canadians recognize that Mohammed is in fact a Canadian name and that there are Canadians with the name Osama. Therefore, I share that view entirely.

    I also share the concern she has expressed about the concerns many Canadians and citizens of the world have about the escalation of violence. At the same time it strikes me that before we can bring terrorists to justice we have to find them. That presents a great challenge.

    Obviously we are aware that the U.S. and Britain appear to be moving in the direction of some kind of action, if they have not already begun, in Afghanistan. They appear to be looking for Osama bin Laden using military means to do that.

    Is the hon. member opposed to that kind of measure or perhaps she is opposed to some kinds of measures and not others? I am not clear on that. How would she pursue these terrorists? How would she see those countries that want to be involved in working toward the end of terrorism pursuing these terrorists, finding them and bringing them to justice?

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    Ms. Alexa McDonough: Mr. Speaker, I know the hon. member has heard me and my colleagues say this again and again inside and outside the House since September 11. We advocate no policy of appeasement. We advocate no policy of turning the other cheek. What we do advocate is the absolute necessity that whatever actions are taken, are taken under the broad auspices of the one international body that exists for the very purpose of dealing with a global crisis like this, namely the United Nations.

    As I have said, how we respond to this crisis is every bit as important as what actions are taken and the how must include the broad auspices of the United Nations based on the rule of law. If we descend into a round of lawlessness and decide to flout international law, then we become the very enemy that we abhor.

    I hope that members on all sides of the House are listening to the pleadings of those who understand that our actions must be driven not by revenge, not by retribution but by a genuine pursuit of a peaceful solution to the horror that terrorism has become in our world today.

  +-(1025)  

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    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I would like to follow up where my leader just left off and address the comments of members across the way.

    Let there be no misunderstanding, the New Democratic Party first and foremost condemns the terrorist acts of September 11. For all of us the horror of September 11 does not go away. More than three weeks after the terrorist acts in New York and Washington, the images of death and destruction are as horrific as ever and they continually haunt us.

    The heroic acts of firefighters and first responders reacting to this terrible tragedy on September 11 continue to overwhelm us and evoke feelings of incredible appreciation for these professions. The courage we now see from the grieving families of the 7,000 victims is a source of incredible inspiration for all of us. It is often said that calamity brings out the best in people and that the greatest catastrophe produces goodness. That is what we are seeing today and that is giving us hope for the future.

    It would be very easy for Canadians and people around the world to fall into deep depression and despair as a result of these events. It would be terribly wrong to allow that to happen. It would be a capitulation to evil. It would be committing a sin of omission. It would be a diminishment of the very lives that were lost.

    Such despair or psychic numbing as Dr. Helen Caldicott has called it, is the temptation to shut out from our minds and hearts the terrifying acts of September 11. The resolution we propose today is in the spirit shown by parliament over these past two weeks to avoid falling into despair, to remember that the situation is not hopeless, to give Canadians that message, to find answers and to seek justice.

    This motion is a very clear and unequivocal condemnation of the terrorist acts of September 11 as crimes against humanity. The catastrophe we are responding to is terrorism and terrorism that went beyond the pale of anybody's understanding. These acts are crimes against humanity that must be condemned and rooted out of our global society.

    Those responsible for hijacking innocent aircraft passengers and crashing planes into buildings slaughtering thousands more must be brought to justice in accordance as our motion says “with international law and within the framework of the United Nations”. That justice be done and that the evil doers be held accountable for these most heinous of acts is our overriding preoccupation.

    There is a danger in all of this that must be avoided. As one Manitoban, the president of the Manitoba Federation of Labour Rob Hilliard, said in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks:

Our history is littered with examples of equally innocent people being blamed and punished or even killed for the acts of others who shared their racial, ethnic or religious characteristics. In our grief and rage, we must remember that the perpetrators must be held accountable--not every member of an ethnic or religious community that they may come from.

    This sentiment is very much a part of the motion we present today. Parliament acknowledged this concern on September 21 when we, together with one voice, issued a plea for political, community and faith leaders to speak out against violence, hatred and intolerance of any kind. We all agreed to reassert our country's fundamental adherence to the rule of law and to preserving and protecting human rights as outlined in our charter.

    Today we call on the government to translate this statement of principle into actions. The rising tide of intolerance and racism, the growing evidence of hatred and xenophobia in our society today, demand concerted efforts, a concerted, deliberate plan of action with a timetable and resources. That is a fundamental part of the motion we present to parliament today.

  +-(1030)  

    This is an issue we are all dealing with in our own communities and for which we are searching for answers. In my own constituency in Winnipeg, which is probably one of the most ethnically diverse ridings anywhere in the country, many walk in fear. They walk in fear of misplaced anger. Many are victims of ethnic slurs or racial taunts.

    Members of the Sikh community in my constituency have told me about their fears. Many have decided to lay low, stay at home and avoid travel in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks. Many others have talked about the humiliation of seeing their homes or garages spray painted with the words go home.

    The fires at mosques, the beating of young kids and the verbal attacks being unleashed on our whole community are reprehensible. We must stand together today with a determined effort, especially in these times, to eradicate our society of such incidents.

    The harmony of our neighbourhoods, a harmony created over the years by efforts to share cultural traditions, have interfaith exchanges and put in place anti-racism initiatives, is facing a serious setback. Today we turn collectively to parliament and the Government of Canada to address this critical issue.

    The danger of people equating Islam with terrorism is the most disturbing development following the terrorist act. Mary Sanchez from the Winnipeg Free Press said:

The words “Islamic terrorists” have been repeated like a mantra by media commentators, around dinner tables, in workplaces and schools. Yet Muslims and Islamic scholars say it would be hard to find two words more opposite in meaning. Experts say that to be a Muslim--which means to be a follower of Islam--is to be fundamentally opposed to the acts last week that likely killed more than 5,000 at the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon.

    We are mindful that all religions have fanatical sects and Islam is no different. We are saying today that we deplore the hijacking of any religion to justify violent political acts. The United Church said the same thing in a statement following the events of September 11.

    We are all dealing with constituents who are more fearful and worried in the aftermath of September 11. Members themselves often walk in fear and look at strangers in a different way. That cannot be. It must not be allowed to continue. We must regain our confidence and reassert our beliefs, especially during this difficult time.

    We are facing a precarious situation and a new climate of insecurity. This will test our commitment to individual liberties and harden in some instances, as we have seen in circles around us, our attitudes toward immigration policy.

    There is no question that the events of September 11 have brought anti-immigration, anti-refugee and anti-multicultural zealots out of the woodwork. It is a development we are gravely concerned about. We will fight it with the motion and by doing everything we can in the House.

    My time is nearing an end. As my party's leader has said, in the search for answers and solutions Canada must be true to its traditions. It must uphold its belief in freedom, democracy and the rule of law. It must maintain its history of recognizing the strengths of multiculturalism and the tremendous benefits to our society of cultural exchanges. Canadians must continue to respect differences and refuse to tolerate racism, intolerance or xenophobia.

    In that context I am pleased to be able to make an amendment to the motion before us today. I move:

    That the motion be amended by inserting the words “and other visible minorities” after the word “Canadians”.

  +-(1035)  

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    The Deputy Speaker: The Chair is satisfied that the amendment to the New Democratic Party opposition day motion is in order.

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    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the motion before the House today is quite appropriate. It represents a proxy by which we can express our condolences and continued concern about the aftermath and fallout. The racism element is a problem.

    The leader of the New Democratic Party summarized her party's position by saying we should be pursuing peaceful solutions. She said any actions should be co-ordinated through one body, namely the UN.

    I wonder whether the NDP would feel the same way if we were here today talking about the gulf war in which the UN was the central body? Would the NDP say the same things if we were talking about Kosovo where the UN was the principal body? We are talking about a situation in which the UN is not the lead body but it has clearly denounced the horrific acts of terrorism of September 11.

    Should we pursue peaceful solutions with Saddam Hussein, Slobodan Milosevic, Osama bin Laden or the Taliban which treats women like non-entities? The NDP should explain to the House how we can have peaceful solutions. We are not talking about revenge. We are talking about defending ourselves.

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    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his question. It gets to the heart of the debate before us today and the matter with which we have been struggling for the past two weeks in parliament. If we give up on searching for peaceful solutions we will be in deep trouble as a society and our goal of preserving the peace of the planet will be in jeopardy.

    We have tried through the ages to be consistent. We have tried to promote the idea of non-violent, peaceful responses to acts of war, and in this case acts of terrorism. We recognize this was a crime against humanity. Through our traditions and our involvement in the United Nations we follow the rule of law. We will abide by international law and do everything in our power to bring to justice the criminals who executed thousands on September 11. That is fundamental.

    However it would be absolutely wrong, as my leader has said, to turn to violence as a response to the terrorism. We would be feeding the agenda of the evil doers. David Matas, a well known lawyer from Winnipeg who deals with immigration and refugee cases, said it best in the aftermath of September 11: “Our answer to barbarity is civilization, not a descent into barbarity ourselves”. Those words are important.

    We propose today to talk about concrete plans of action to deal with the direction provided by the UN security council resolution. We must ensure we do whatever we can in Canada about incidents of racism and enforcement problems with our immigration and refugee law.

    We must also take precautionary measures against other threats such as bioterrorism, an area I did not have a chance to mention. Canada is ill prepared for the threat of biological or chemical warfare. However there are actions we can take to ensure we get to the root of the problem and the tragedy we are dealing with today.

  +-(1040)  

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    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be dividing my time. I thank the hon. leader of the New Democratic Party for bringing forward today's motion which refers to resolution 1373 of the United Nations Security Council which was adopted last Friday.

[Translation]

    This is a resolution our government supports with pleasure, since it constitutes the most important step in the campaign against terrorism the international community has taken so far. It deserves a supportive reception here in Canada, in the House of Commons.

[English]

    On September 11 when the terrorists and their as yet uncounted accomplices hijacked four aircraft from United Airlines and American Airlines they had only evil in mind. They wanted to create terror, wreak havoc, breed fear, and destabilize societies and economies.

    Whatever they have accomplished, the terrorists have failed in their effort to create divisions between countries and peoples or to fragment the international community and create pockets of dissent where they might continue to hide themselves or find aid. Their terrible acts have raised a groundswell of solidarity within the international community rarely before seen, until now.

    It is particularly timely that we address these issues today. This morning at NATO the United States briefed the North Atlantic Council on the results of the investigation into the terrorist attacks of September 11. The briefing covered a number of key issues including the involvement of Osama bin Laden and the al-Qaeda organization, their previous terrorist activities and the links between al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

    As members will recall, the North Atlantic Council issued a clear statement on September 12 saying that if it were determined the attacks were directed from abroad, article 5 of the Washington treaty would be invoked. On the basis of today's briefing in Brussels the if clause in the statement of September 12 has been removed. We will be consulting bilaterally with the United States and multilaterally with our NATO allies in Brussels and other capitals regarding our next steps.

    We are seeing unprecedented strength of unity and force of resolution in the response of nations and international organizations around the globe ranging from NATO to the G-8, to the OAS, to the EU.

[Translation]

    Countries in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, some of them with great courage, have also expressed their support for the United States and the international campaign against terrorism. Russia and China have also rallied to this joint effort.

[English]

    Nowhere has this been more evident than in the United Nations and the UN security council. We are pleased in particular to note the continued emphasis the U.S. administration has placed on the central role of the United Nations in consolidating international solidarity and driving multilateral action against terrorism.

    The UN, and particularly the security council, reacted quickly to the attacks and adopted resolutions providing an immediate political and legal framework for an international response to the crisis.

    This week the UN has begun a special debate on terrorism. The session was launched yesterday by Secretary General Kofi Annan and, in another moment of history making, New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Giuliani has come to symbolize the courage, honesty and resolve that have inspired and invigorated the international community since the day of the attacks. In his speech yesterday he said the attack of September 11:

--was not just an attack on the City of New York or on the United States of America; it was an attack on the very ideal of a free, inclusive and civil society. It was a direct assault on the founding principles of the United Nations itself.

    He also urged the UN that:

the best long term deterrent to terrorism is the spread of the principles of freedom, democracy, rule of law and respect for human rights.

    He cautioned member nations that “this is not the time for further study or vague directives” and underscored that there was no room for neutrality in the fight against terrorism.

  +-(1045)  

[Translation]

    Much remains to be done, certainly, and numerous measures will be taken within the international community, by governments and by the parliaments of all member countries of the UN.

    Security council resolution 1373 is the firmest and most consequence-laden resolution we have seen from that organization. It leaves no doubt whatsoever about the determination of the international community to make the terrorists pay for their actions.

[English]

    Most significantly it establishes a number of obligations that member states must fulfill, provides tools for international action and imposes a clear timetable for the establishment of a work program and for the monitoring of states' implementation of its provisions.

    It is a serious piece of business. It has Canada's full support.

    Among its provisions the resolution includes measures to freeze the financial assets of terrorists and counter their fundraising capabilities; prevent the movement of terrorists across borders and deny them safe haven; improve information exchange and co-operation in the prevention and suppression of terrorist activities; and it calls upon all states to become party to, as quickly as possible, all the relevant international conventions and protocols related to terrorism.

    As the House is aware, Canada has ratified 10 international counterterrorism conventions and is committed to moving quickly to ratify the remaining two, which we have already signed.

[Translation]

    I can assure the House today that Canada will act promptly to implement resolution 1373 and that we will present our report to the UN security council committee within the 90 days specified in the resolution.

    In addition to this, and not merely within the strict limits of the new security council resolution, we have already begun to take action here in Canada.

    The government is taking steps that are indicative of its determination to respond to the concerns of Canadians, which relate to their very safety and security.

[English]

    The Prime Minister noted yesterday the creation of a new ad hoc cabinet Committee of Ministers on Public Security and Anti-Terrorism, which I will chair at his request. The committee has already started its work on developing a strategy to address the immediate challenges facing the government in the area of public security.

    We are reviewing policies, legislation, regulations and programs across the government in order to adjust all aspects of our public security in light of the events of September 11, including to reflect the obligations set out by the UN security council last week.

    Ministers will, through the committee, propose initiatives on how to address issues related to the security of Canadians and in a way that respects and integrates the values which make this nation so strong and so proud.

    We cannot speak enough, in my view, of the way that the Canadian people have lived those values through this crisis. Each day a new account, a letter, an article crosses my desk which tells of a new story of generosity and compassion extended to those over 33,000 travellers diverted to Canada on September 11. One couple from Rockville, Maryland, I think, described their reception in Halifax as “a collective act of love by our Canadian neighbours”.

    Over the coming weeks and months as we work our way through the weighty and difficult agenda that has been put before us, we must always remain conscious that this is what we are working for: to preserve while we protect the sort of society that is captured in that comment and which has made Canada the envy and the friend of much of this world.

    The government hopes that the unity of purpose so strongly evident within the international community will be reflected in the work and the goodwill of the House through this difficult fall session. The solidarity and multi-partisan approach taken by leaders of all parties as they walked through the ruins of ground zero in New York last weekend was, I am certain, welcomed by all in the House and deeply appreciated by Canadians. It was sincere and it was right. Let us continue to act in this spirit.

  +-(1050)  

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    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I am sure all Canadians will welcome the very strong commitment given by the minister that Canada will indeed comply with the United Nations security council directive to report back on actions within 90 days.

    I have two questions. First, I wonder if the minister would take the opportunity to indicate whether he, on behalf of his government, could commit to ensuring that the report will also be tabled here in the House. Increasingly we are dismayed at how much information these days comes not through the House of Commons but actually through Liberal fundraisers. It is in the same spirit of solidarity and Canadians coming together that such information needs to be shared through parliament with all the representatives of Canadians.

    Second, I am sure the minister had his very particular emphasis which is understandable given the fact that he has agreed to chair the cabinet committee dealing with anti-terrorism measures. He therefore chose to focus on those aspects of the motion before the House. However I wonder if I might ask very directly whether the minister could give an undertaking on behalf of his government today that the Government of Canada will, with equal concern and vigour, commit to a plan of action that will address the pain and suffering that is being experienced by Muslim Canadians, Arab Canadians and other visible minorities as a result of this unbelievable, unprecedented backlash toward members of those communities in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.

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    Hon. John Manley: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the questions. By the way, it was interesting when as I was coming in here I noticed that the leader of the labour party in the United Kingdom was delivering his speech on the situation to a party conference, so I guess it is not unknown to address important international issues in party conferences.

    When we have our report prepared for the United Nations to itemize our response to the security council's resolution 1373, of course that will be made available to members of the House. As well it of course will be available for discussion and debate in the appropriate House committees.

    With respect to what I think all of us are troubled about in terms of the distressing ease with which some Canadians have sought to characterize these incidents as somehow representative of a community within Canada, I think all of us share the outrage that is embodied in the resolution this morning. I can tell the leader of the New Democratic Party that shortly after the attacks I went home to discuss this with my 14 year old. About a third of her grade nine class here in Ottawa is Muslim. The upset that was caused when one of her classmates said the incident was caused by Muslims was something that she lived. We as a family are living it because we live in a community in the national capital region in which the third most commonly spoken language is Arabic.

    All of us need to recognize that these extremists, these radicals, who took the actions on September 11 are no more typical of those who practise the religion of Islam than the extremists in Northern Ireland are typical of Christians, be they Protestant or Catholic, or other extremists of the groups with which they may otherwise be identified.

    Yes, the government needs to continue to address these divisions and to speak the language of healing within our communities. Yes, people who are members of groups who have been affected by this, whether or not they are victims, need to also reach out and attempt to heal. Yes, many of those in the Muslim community who have come to me to say how deeply saddened they are and how horrified they are that anyone who might proclaim their religion would commit these atrocities need to be heard as well in our society so that the healing can occur.

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    Ms. Sarmite Bulte (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the days since the tragic events of September 11 have been days of sadness and anxiety for Canadians everywhere. That dreadful morning will forever be etched in memory as a day when time stood still.

    Once past the initial shock and horror, which we will never forget, Canadians and their government began to offer support to all those affected by the tragedies. We reacted as friends and neighbours and we were recognized as such. Soon we came to the realization that these were times for remembering and rededicating ourselves to the mutual respect and understanding that are so fundamental to who we are as Canadians. We decided to stand together as a people and with the nations of the world against the evil of terrorism.

    The Government of Canada has been unequivocal in its support of the United States, ready to participate with aid for its people and in defence of our democratic freedoms and civil liberties. Let us be clear. We are in a war against terrorism, a war that will not be won by a single act of anger or retribution but by maintaining a strong, multicultural, democratic society in which no person should have his or her freedoms or personal security compromised or threatened because of religion, race or ethnicity.

    Since the events of September 11 the Government of Canada has been firm in its resolve to stand by the values of tolerance, respect and equality. The Prime Minister said in the House of Commons:

Today more than ever we must reaffirm the fundamental values of our charter of rights and freedoms: the equality of every race, every colour, every religion and every ethnic origin.

    Our plan to fight the rise of terrorism in the world includes action to fight the rise of intolerance in our midst. Yet we are aware that because of the alleged origins of the terrorists particular attention has been drawn to Arab and Muslim communities even here in Canada. We know that some members of these communities have been singled out for hate and violence and we have been quick to denounce these actions.

    Our leader, the Prime Minister, has been clear in the articulation of this message. On September 21 at the Ottawa Central Mosque he reaffirmed it when he said:

I wanted to stand by your side today. And to reaffirm with you that Islam has nothing to do with the mass murder that was planned and carried out by the terrorists and their masters.

[Translation]

    He added:

Above all I want to stand by your side to condemn the acts of intolerance and hatred that have been committed against your community since the attack. Let me say that I turn my back on the people who have done this. I have no time for them. And I call on our police and courts to apply the full force of our laws against them.

[English]

    The Secretary of State for Multiculturalism has been in contact with Arab, Muslim and other communities around the country. She has been meeting with groups and will continue to discuss with them ways to help build intercultural relationships and develop strategies to bring communities together.

    Multicultural officials in all regions of Canada have been monitoring the situation to ensure that leaders at all levels are able to respond to concerns, offer support and build harmony. To this end resources from existing multicultural programs will be used to support communities to reinforce tolerance and social cohesion.

    Expressions of hate have no place in Canadian society. They undermine the fundamental values of respect, equality and security. They cause damage to multicultural tolerant and law-abiding societies. As long as citizens feel insecure and vulnerable to hate and biased activity, we cannot be complacent. This is as true now as it was before September 11.

    The Government of Canada is working hard to encourage the widest possible acceptance of diversity in Canada, regardless of race, nationality, colour, religion, age, sexual orientation and mental or physical disability. When individuals are marginalized in our society because of hate and violence they are prevented from realizing their potential in contributing fully to society.

    The government is taking action against hate in the following four areas: public education, the legal system, community initiatives and research. The multiculturalism program, with its mandate under the multiculturalism act, works with various levels of government, institutions, schools and community groups to combat intolerance, racism and hate.

    The March 21 campaign builds upon the impetus of the United Nations international day for the elimination of racial discrimination. Canadian youth have been especially active in the March 21 website, the Mathieu Da Costa awards and the stop racism national video competition. Capacity building initiatives for youth are key to social change. Our anti-racism campaign engages public figures, the private sector and the media to promote awareness of the need to combat racism in communities and on the Internet.

    Canada has strong anti-hate legislation. The Criminal Code of Canada and the Canadian Human Rights Act make it a crime to incite hatred against an identifiable group and to consider hate as an aggravating factor in criminal sentencing. Under the Customs Tariff Act, the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency examines materials at the border for prohibited hate propaganda and is working internationally with the World Customs Organization to share information on transnational movement of hate propaganda.

    The government recognizes that collective community initiatives, responses to hate motivated activity, and organized hate groups in Canada are key solutions.

    Over the past two years the secretary of state held round tables with NGOs, the private sector, law enforcement officials, youth and other representatives to find solutions to hate activities resulting in the document entitled “Call for Action: Combating Hate and Bias Activity”. The September 11 tragedy serves as a reminder that the work underway is necessary and timely.

    With respect to research the multiculturalism program has and will continue to support research in the areas of social justice, civic participation, racism and hate activity. It will work horizontally within government to promote the institutional change that will combat systemic problems.

    September 11 was a chilling reminder of the consequences of hate. However there are encouraging signs as well. A recent Ipsos-Reid poll indicated that 82% of Canadians worried that Arabs and Muslims would become victims of racism and 73% felt that they had not become more suspicious of Arabs or Muslims.

    Cultural diversity is not trivial to us. It has been a fundamental Canadian characteristic since our beginning. During these difficult times we must ensure we do not let acts of terrorism fragment the society we have built together. The values of multiculturalism, equality, shared citizenship and respect for the rule of law instill in us a determination to advance and protect human rights and human security around the world.

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    In the last Speech from the Throne the Government of Canada made a commitment to build a stronger, ever more inclusive Canada. We have long been set on this objective and we will continue in the same direction.

    We recognize that recent incidents of hostility and violence against Middle Eastern, South Asian and visible minority communities have created anxiety and fear in these communities. However we must be careful not to escalate the anxiety into a crisis situation. As members of parliament we must remain calm, focused and measured in our response.

    We believe it is important to engage in a renewed dialogue with concerned communities. We have begun and will continue regular ongoing communications with affected groups to ensure comfort with government action and strategic input.

    We must continue to put our efforts and resources in close collaboration with communities toward building a safer and more secure Canada. We need to continue to find realistic ways to reaffirm our shared values of mutual respect and common citizenship. We need to continue to work to make a more equitable society today and a better future for generations to come.

    Our goal is to give all Canadians, regardless of their origins, a sense of belonging to a country where they have the fullest opportunity to participate and contribute to the life of the nation.

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    Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I will briefly comment on the NDP motion which I think is an excellent one to bring before the House and one that all members of parliament will support. My question for the member is more in line with the government's response to the events of September 11.

    The minister mentioned earlier that the government had finally, as late as yesterday, formed a committee to deal with national security. The president of the United States had already established the position of secretary for homeland security. Although the minister announced yesterday that we would have a committee for national security, we are getting mixed messages from the government benches because the Prime Minister said that the committee had been in existence since September 11.

    The Minister of National Defence was interviewed yesterday and said that he did not know anything about it. We need a very clear answer from the government side on when the committee was appointed. When did it first sit? What is its mandate? How does the government intend to apply that mandate? Who will be included within the umbrella association?

    Would the member also comment on how the government intends to prevent acts of racism against visible minorities in Canada, especially our Muslim neighbours and citizens? How does the government intend to apply that and when will it show some leadership?

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    Ms. Sarmite Bulte: Mr. Speaker, on the first day the House came back after our summer recess the Prime Minister rose to remind everyone that we are all Canadians. He reminded everyone that we would not sacrifice the very special values that make us Canadian and that we would continue to encourage people who are persecuted to come to Canada.

    Canada is made up of immigrants. The Secretary of State for Multiculturalism has made numerous comments denouncing the September 11 attacks. Yesterday the Minister of Canadian Heritage spoke about the violence in her own riding and how important it was to promote our cultural diversity at this time.

    When the Minister of Canadian Heritage was asked about the recent meeting of the international network for cultural policy which she attended last week in Switzerland, she made it absolutely clear the ministers all agreed in light of the recent events that it was very important for all countries to renew and to make a stronger commitment to fostering a greater respect and understanding of cultural diversity, something of which we are very proud.

    There have been concrete measures. The Secretary of State for Multiculturalism has been in contact with numerous groups and communities that have been affected. We have seen the Prime Minister express his concern by visiting a mosque in Ottawa. Many of my colleagues who have mosques in their neighbourhoods have also visited them to reassure that community that this is not a time to target refugees. It is a time for all of us to get together.

    In my riding there is an Afghan women's organization that works very hard in promoting the integration of Afghan refugees within our community. I phoned representatives of that organization after the attacks and they were very concerned because they were already hearing about children being attacked in schools and violence in the workplace.

    We have a role as parliamentarians to stand in the House to tell people time and time again that violence is wrong. It is most important to remember that this is war against terrorism which exists throughout the world.

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    Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I thank the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage for her comments. I too would like to see some concrete resources made available for groups to work on the issues of racism and hostility as a result of the September 11 atrocities. I would like to hear about the initiatives coming out of her department.

    I am also very concerned about the obvious role the public broadcaster in this country plays in a situation such as this one. The CBC and RCI have an important role internationally. I understand that Arabic programming has been cut back this summer with RCI.

    How will the Minister of Canadian Heritage assist in propping up a very crippled public broadcaster at this point in time in terms of more multicultural programming within the country? How will she ensure that foreign correspondents in places around the world will be able to provide Canadians with more balanced programming, a more Canadian perspective of moderation and tolerance?

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    Ms. Sarmite Bulte: Mr. Speaker, with respect to RCI it is very important to understand that it was this Minister of Canadian Heritage who saved RCI. At the end of March 2001 she concluded a contribution agreement with RCI to allow it to perform its services. RCI is in the process of re-engineering itself as well.

    It is important to note the money that was committed to RCI was in addition to the moneys the CBC already received. It was the additional $60 million the Prime Minister announced on May 2.

    My hon. colleague knows very well that the CBC is the public broadcaster. The independence of the CBC is guaranteed by parliament under subsection 46(5) of the Broadcasting Act. Perhaps we could continue this conversation at our heritage committee.

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    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the opportunity to add my comments to those of my colleagues in the House on this motion.

    The motion before the House begins by calling on the House to condemn the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001 as crimes against humanity. Certainly everyone in the House will agree with that aspect of the motion. As many of us have pointed out, the most unfortunate acts referred to were crimes not against a nation or a government but were crimes against every right-thinking moral person in the world. It goes without saying that humanity itself was a victim of these crimes.

    The motion then calls for the perpetrators to be brought to justice in accordance with international law and within the framework of the United Nations. Again I think the entire House will be in total agreement with that aspect of the resolution.

    Just as there can be no moral or practical justification for the indiscriminate mass murder on September 11, there can also be no justification for an indiscriminate, intemperate or ill-informed violent response. However, there is considerable latitude within the terms of the motion for responsible nations to act decisively and forcefully against the perpetrators of terrorist acts.

    United Nations Security Council resolution 1373 reaffirms “the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence” as recognized by the charter of the United Nations.

    It also reaffirms “the need to combat by all means, in accordance with the charter of the United Nations, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts”. To say that any action taken against terrorists and in particular against the perpetrators of the September 11 attacks must be taken within the framework of the United Nations does not significantly limit the scope of measures available to any individual nation or alliance of nations. Moreover, the motion leaves the door open for an individual nation or alliance to take measures against countries that harbour terrorists, which is quite appropriate.

    Resolution 1373 reaffirms that every state has the duty to refrain from organizing, instigating, assisting, or participating in terrorist acts in another state, or acquiescing in organized activities within its territory directed toward the commission of such acts. Taken together with “the need to combat by all means...threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts” and the inherent right to individual or collective self-defence against terrorism, this clause gives approval to actions taken by a state that has been victimized by terrorism against states that sponsor terrorism.

    Paragraph (b) of the motion before us endorses the objectives of resolution 1373. Many of those objectives are exactly in keeping with what the official opposition and many other members on this side of the House have called for not just recently, and not just in response to the tragic events of three weeks ago, but rather for a considerable length of time.

    Given my limited time today, I will dedicate the remainder of my speech to one particularly important objective of resolution 1373. I refer to the clause in the resolution which calls on all states to work together urgently to prevent and suppress terrorist acts, including through increased co-operation and full implementation of the relevant international conventions against terrorism.

    Many nations took significant steps toward realizing those objectives long before resolution 1373 was passed. For example, the United Kingdom and the United States have already undertaken joint measures to locate those responsible for the September 11 attacks and to bring them to justice, as we all hope will happen. All 15 countries of the European Union have agreed to joint measures to combat terrorism. NATO has reaffirmed section 5 of its charter, which binds all member countries to act in defence of one another. All of those actions were taken urgently and all of those actions were taken together as the resolution calls for.

    Unfortunately in our case it has been the inability of the government to demonstrate by more than words its commitment, which other nations have demonstrated already, to the battle against terrorism, such as for example, military commitments or the seizure of assets. Unfortunately there has been very little togetherness with other nations and even less urgency in the government's response to the terrorist threat.

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    The government seems to believe that safeguarding Canadian sovereignty consists of distancing itself or openly opposing any policy supported by the United States, even if it means also opposing the desires of Canadians.

    The Liberal government has seized every opportunity for many years now to differentiate Canadian foreign policy from that of the United States in its effort to appeal to the insecurity and the envy with which some Canadians too often regard our southern neighbour. This is not a sign of confidence in our own sovereignty or in our own nationhood. The deliberate and overblown divergence of Liberal foreign policy from that of the U.S. has served the domestic image of the Liberal Party well at times. What the Liberals do not appreciate is that on September 11 those feelings of insecurity and envy were supplanted in the hearts of Canadians by feelings of kinship and feelings of obligation toward the United States.

    The government's position has been one of vacillation between initial denials that there was anything wrong or that Canada had any involvement, complicity or responsibility in any way as articulated by the solicitor general and by the Prime Minister himself, to gradual and begrudging foot-dragging commitments to certain action which should be undertaken.

    When questioned in the House the immigration minister denied there was anything that needed to be done in addition to what she had already done. Outside the House she declared there was tough new legislation on the way, which of course as we know is neither tough nor new. The reality is somewhat different from that which has been portrayed by the immigration minister.

    The Prime Minister refused to outline here in the House any specific military commitments, or other commitments in fact, which we as a nation would be making in support of this battle, but was pleased to make an announcement of our willingness to commit in a military manner on a United States cable program hosted by Larry King. This is the kind of disrespect and vacillation of which Canadians grow weary. Just as the war on terrorism is a different kind of war for the United States, the issue of Canada's role in ensuring North American security presents a very different kind of war for the government of the day.

    Polls show that the overwhelming majority of Canadians believe that Canada should be fully engaged in the fight against terrorism on all fronts at home and abroad. By deliberately responding to American calls for a more secure North American perimeter and by failing to adapt its foreign policy to reflect the zero tolerance attitude which Canadians have toward terrorists and those who harbour them, I believe the government has demonstrated that it has lost touch with public sentiment. For example, when American authorities suggest common standards for the admission of new arrivals in North America, the Prime Minister's immediate response is to tell Canadians that such an approach would require the sacrifice of Canadian values. Either he does not understand that immigration policies can be at once rigorous and generous or he believes wrongly that Canadians' tolerance of cultural diversity extends to would-be murderers. Either way, he is clearly out of touch with the attitude of Canadians.

    When the United States and other nations enacted legislation outlawing terrorist organizations and prohibiting them from raising funds, the government answered by outlawing tax deductions for those who donate to terrorist groups. Rather than prohibiting funding for terrorist groups, the government has decided to tax it. This is inadequate tokenism.

    The American response to the threat of aircraft hijackings is to place air marshals on all U.S. flights. The Canadian response to the same threat is to seize nail clippers from passengers and replace metal butter knives used during in-flight meals with plastic ones.

    While the American president unequivocally states that those countries that do not side with the United States in the war on terrorism have chosen to be on the side of the terrorists, the Liberal Government of Canada sends aid to every country on the U.S. state department's list of states that sponsor terrorism, aid which the Auditor General of Canada said is not well tracked. Recently, aid sent to the Taliban regime, to Afghanistan, was seized by the Taliban regime for what use we do not know, though there is the possibility that such aid would be diverted to purposes not intended by those who offered it.

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    Our foreign affairs department has indicated that it will be supporting the bid of one of the countries that is most notorious for hosting terrorists in the world, Syria, to gain a seat on the United Nations Security Council. Again the government demonstrates that its deeds do not reflect the good words it says about fighting terrorism and about joining with other free thinking countries to fight terrorism in the world.

    Even compared to countries much further removed from the September 11 attacks, the government response has been puny and/or inappropriate. It took the 15 diverse countries of the European Union only eight days to enact tough, joint anti-terrorism legislation. Yet Canada refuses to adopt joint security measures with its closest ally with whom we share the world's longest undefended border, the largest trade partnership and greatest military dependence.

    As Great Britain and other European countries deploy impressive military resources to assist the United States on the front lines of the war against terrorism, the Conference of Defence Associations reports that the Canadian forces are “simply not operationally ready to do our part in the defence of North America, let alone in combating terrorism abroad”. What a shame. We know that under the government our military resources have been depleted. We know that our ability to contribute militarily has been damaged. That being said, certainly there are other things we could be doing.

    I was pleased to learn yesterday that the government has decided to establish a committee, with the Minister of Foreign Affairs as its chair, to co-ordinate the response to these many issues. I was pleased because I have been heartened by the words of the Minister of Foreign Affairs on these issues. I would hope that the committee and the minister can prove that the committee is more than a token effort to appear to be dealing with an issue, but rather it is a genuine effort to co-ordinate a meaningful response to what Canadians believe is a series of issues that require such meaningful response. I do not question the minister's sincerity, though it does stand in stark contrast to the words of too many of his front bench colleagues over the last three weeks.

    If the government wants to dispel the impression that we are following the United States, then it should stop following the United States and get in front and lead the United States. Instead of simply refusing to budge on United States initiatives or foot dragging, the government should assert Canadian sovereignty and put on the table specific and concrete offers, whether they are for assistance or in terms of policy changes.

    Offers to our allies in their time of need are important, not just to be made, but to be genuinely and promptly given before being asked. The failure of the government to do so does not assert our sovereignty. It is quite the opposite. What it does is it makes us less a nation.

    The final recommendation of the motion before us would require the government to table an action plan to fight racism against Arab and Muslim Canadians. Of course any response to the atrocities of September 11 must be appropriately targeted. It must be well informed and judicious. We do not want to overreact as has been the case in our history and in the history of other nations to these atrocities. We want to respond reasonably, intelligently and fairly.

    Similarly, those attacks were not carried out by a particular nation or race or religious group. The attacks were carried out by terrorists who do not share our values. We are all naturally disgusted when we see misguided, racist attacks on particular Canadians or on any other person. Simply because people are of the same ethnicity or religion as the terrorists gives no justification whatsoever for such acts. Certainly I was pleased to see other members rise and make testament to the truth of that feeling in the House.

    However, it is surely alarmist to refer to a few isolated incidents of bigotry as “a rising tide of intolerance and racism within our country”. The motion is extreme in those words. As tragic as these incidents are, I believe that fortunately they are rare exceptions to the general reaction of Canadians, to the general attitude of Canadians, to the general tolerance that exists within the country. We must not lose sight of that.

    The vast majority of Canadians have felt a greater kinship with one another and with other tolerant and freedom loving people everywhere regardless of race, creed or colour in the wake of the attacks in New York City and Washington.

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    I would pause to question whether a detailed action plan on the part of the government would be useful in combating these instances of racist aggression that might arise. The most effective means of combating such acts is for each of us, for the tolerant majority of Canadians, to be ever vigilant and to bring to justice those who commit crimes of intolerance anywhere in the world.

    Under our criminal code we have methods for bringing forward charges against those who exhibit this kind of behaviour. These crimes of intolerance against fellow Canadians are totally unacceptable, just as the international community must be ever vigilant and must bring to justice those who committed crimes of intolerance elsewhere and just as we must all bear in mind the great sympathy and the great obligation we have to act on the basis of the horrible atrocities of just three weeks ago in the United States.

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    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I must say I was very disappointed to hear the hon. member, the spokesperson for the Canadian Alliance and foreign affairs, suggesting that his party does not support the call for an action plan as outlined in the motion that the leader of the New Democratic Party has put before the House.

    The motion specifically calls on the government to table within 90 days a report setting out steps that the Canadian government will take to implement an action plan, including detailed budgets and timetables to fight the rising tide of intolerance and racism directed against Arab and Muslim Canadians in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

    The official spokesperson for the Alliance has indicated that he does not support the call for an action plan. What part of the action plan does he not support? Does he not recognize that there is a very serious concern in this country with growing incidents of racist attacks, not just on Muslims and Arab Canadians. A Hindu temple was attacked in Toronto and a number of Sikhs have been attacked in Hamilton and elsewhere. Children are being attacked in schools.

    This cries out for action, not just from the government but from all parliamentarians to speak with one voice against this. I am deeply troubled by the fact that the Canadian Alliance apparently is not joining in this call.

    Will the member reconsider his position upon reflection and join in ensuring that this call for a strong and effective action against these kinds of racist attacks is one which is unanimous from all parties in the House of Commons?

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    Mr. Brian Pallister: Mr. Speaker, there is definitely a very real danger, which has been the case in the past, that when emotional and tragic events occur there is an overreaction that sometimes results in more harm being done than good.

    The wording of the motion is what I object to. The sentiment of the motion, as I said in my comments, is something that I share with the members. However, as to the question of accepting the wording of the resolution, if the members would like to propose some type of modified wording the third component of the resolution certainly would be something I would entertain.

    However to suggest that in Canada today there is a rising tide of intolerance and racism is extreme in its wording. It implies that qualities exist in the country in an alarmist way that are not the case. I believe a tremendous majority of Canadians are among the most tolerant people in the world today. I also believe that Canadians have expressed that tolerance in very real ways, not just by their sympathies toward the United States but by their sympathies in support of one another, to the Canadian families who have been victimized by these attacks and to one another in many ways.

    I do not discount at all the tragedy of consequent actions that we have seen in the country, the intolerance that has stimulated the members to propose this resolution, the intolerance that all of us in the House find unacceptable. I in no way imply that it is acceptable. Of course it is not, but to move to suggest that there is somehow an epidemic of intolerance, a racism in the country, as the member's words suggest, is I believe an overreaction to the circumstances we have seen.

    I accept the fact that there have been a few expressions of intolerant acts and they are unacceptable. The fact that we need to promote the ideas of tolerance and understanding and to be diligent and vigilant in doing so is of course an obligation for each and every one of us.

    Yesterday we learned that a minister of the government attended a meeting where expressions of anti-American attitude were conveyed in very strong wording, very likely unacceptable to all members of the House. Yet that minister sat quietly by as those comments were made and did not rise in her place to express her disapproval or disagreement with that. I am sure had the members who put this resolution forward been there they would have been much more inclined to rise and express their concerns.

    When we sit quietly by and hear words such as were expressed yesterday at that meeting, we should not let anyone think that our beliefs are sincere or genuine. If we have the courage of our convictions we will stand in our place and say that they are unacceptable words and should not be uttered. Such is our obligation as individual Canadians and as members of parliament.

    We want to make sure that we do everything in our power to stop the expressions of intolerance in our country. We have mechanisms for doing so. However to suggest somehow, as this resolution does, that this is of an epidemic nature, is a dramatic over-response to the realities of the case. I do not believe that the wording is well considered. I believe it is reactionary in tone.

    For that reason and that reason only would I suggest to the members that if they wish me to stand in my place and express support for the resolution they might consider my comments as ones they may want to take under advisement.

    I respect the intention of the wording and of the resolution itself and, as I said, the Canadian Alliance supports that, but the wording in this specific instance only is the cause of our concern.

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    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I think what we want to do here is build on the commonly shared concern about the acts of intolerance, the evidence of racism and what one can only describe as an alarming growth in that kind of behaviour in the aftermath of September 11.

    What concerns me a great deal, and I say this in an attempt to reach out and find common ground and understanding, is the reference in the member's comments to a few expressions of intolerance that have occurred. If the hon. member were in tune with what is happening in his own community, he could not possibly describe what has happened in such a casual way as a few expressions of intolerance.

    It was about a week ago that there had already been publicly identified 173 specific incidents of behaviour that could only be described as extreme and very worrisome in terms of this rising tide of intolerance. I want to agree with the member when he says that where there are specific actions that are clearly indicative of hate and in violation of the charter of rights and freedoms and other specific legal provisions, then we should be pushing for the prosecution of such illegal actions.

    Let me again appeal to the hon. member to understand that in a way this is a teachable moment, in a way this is a time to understand that the world of small children has been turned upside down and turned ugly by events that have happened that they cannot possibly comprehend unless we develop specific outreach measures to ensure there is meaningful dialogue about what is happening, why it is happening, what it means and, more important, why we must all pull together around a specific plan of action to put a stop to this unacceptable behaviour.

    The hon. member would not for a moment say that we should just go on doing what we are doing now in the face of the terrorist attacks. He and all members of the House have said that we have to take extraordinary measures.

    Let that member and his party also consider why it is not acceptable to say that we will just carry on doing what we are doing and that there is no need to mount a plan of action to deal with the horrors of the increasing intolerances that are occurring all around us.

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    Mr. Brian Pallister: Mr. Speaker, again I repeat that my concerns do not lie with the general thrust of the resolution or its intent but rather with the language which the member has chosen to employ in the resolution itself, which I think is exaggerated language and overdramatic.

    There is nothing casual about my response. If the member would choose to read my comments and review them, she would find that there is absolutely nothing more than specific proposals for addressing some of the concerns that she and her party have raised in the resolution.

    The reality is, though, that there have been expressions also of anti-American feeling, very strong expressions of an anti-American view, in fact by the hon. member who sits behind her in the House in a discussion we had just the other day.

    I recognize that these are deplorable sentiments and that they have been expressed, unfortunately, by some members in the House toward the United States. The anger and the animosity that has been expressed toward people of other nations and of other races is not something any of us should find supportable. However the reality is that we need to move with specific measures and specific approaches to deal with this problem.

    The larger problem with which I believe Canadians are concerned and want us to address is the violent threat of terrorist activity in the country and in the world. I think that is the issue that should focus the considerable amount of our time and resources in the House.

    As I said earlier, we have, individually, responsibilities to stand up for what we believe in and we must do that . Certainly all of us in the House believe it is intolerable for people to express the attitudes that have been illustrated by a number of events around the country.

    Again, the wording which the hon. member has proposed in her resolution is unacceptable to us. That does not mean that the sentiments she expresses are not genuine. I am not questioning her integrity whatsoever. What I am suggesting is that if members wish to have overly dramatic wording in the resolution, it will be difficult for us to support that concept. The earlier parts of the resolution are quite acceptable to us.

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[Translation]

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    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I would like to mention at the outset that I will be sharing my time with my colleague from Lévis-et-Chutes-de-la-Chaudière.

    I am pleased to speak this morning to the motion by the New Democratic Party, which seems perfectly appropriate to me. However, I cannot help but mention that we are running out of time. This motion is entirely appropriate, but the latest international news informs us that the Prime Minister of Great Britain is declaring war, and that NATO is accepting the proof of bin Laden's responsibility.

    This motion is appropriate, not only because it reiterates the condemnation of these abominable acts and there are no words to describe them, but also because it condemns them as crimes against humanity. It demands that those who perpetrated them, those who are responsible, be brought to justice, in accordance with international law and within the framework of the United Nations.

    This is a position that we share, something that we have spoken to on numerous occasions, and it is a perspective that more and more people are sharing. It is interesting to note that the Council of Europe, which I and other parliamentarians from the House just visited, identified the International Criminal Court as the institution that should judge terrorist acts.

    I note in passing that the countries which had not ratified the convention should do so, because, unfortunately, only 48 have signed to date and 60 are needed to establish the court.

    I am grateful to the NDP for wording its motion the way it did. We all know that the international criminal court, even once it is established, would not have the mandate to consider the crime perpetrated on September 11, because it does not have the mandate to pass judgment on previous acts.

    This is why it has been stated the UN must find a way to have these people judged by an international tribunal and the way proposed by the legal affairs commission of the Council of Europe is the establishment of a special international tribunal to judge those responsible for these events. I thank the NDP for bringing this to the House's attention.

    I also point out that the resolution of the Council of Europe provides, and I quote:

There can be no justification for terrorism. The Assembly--

    Several hundred parliamentarians from 43 countries sit in this parliament.

The Assembly considers these terrorist actions to be crimes rather than acts of war. Any actions either by the United States acting alone or as a part of a broader international coalition, must be in line with existing UN anti-terrorist conventions and security council resolutions and must focus on bringing the perpetrators, organizers and sponsors of these crimes to justice, instead of inflicting a hasty revenge.

    So I am grateful to the NDP for giving us an opportunity to remember the facts.

    The second part of the NDP motion refers to resolution 1373 of the security council. Here again, I believe it is extremely important to point out that countries have decided to work together. Many are working to expand this coalition to include as many countries as possible.

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    This co-ordination exercise, which is strongly urged by everyone, including UN secretary general Kofi Annan in his speech yesterday, is a call to co-ordinate efforts, to crack down on the funding of terrorist acts and to abstain from any form of active or passive support for the people involved in terrorist acts, whether by denying asylum, providing mutual assistance and all other possible means, including through intelligence activities.

    However, Kofi Annan reminded us yesterday that while this resolution is essential, it will not eradicate terrorism even if it is implemented. This means there must be a long term strategy and Mr. Annan is proposing that the UN be responsible for it, to legitimize the fight that is about to begin at the world level. This legitimacy will allow the largest possible number of states to take measures that are necessary but difficult from a diplomatic, legal and political perspective to defeat terrorism.

    This means that we also support the part of the motion which provides that the government should table a report in the House.

    Finally, yesterday, at the UN, the Belgian representative of the European Union also said that the fight against terrorism requires the largest possible global coalition and that this coalition should be under the aegis of the UN, which remains the most appropriate forum to renew and strengthen our co-ordinated efforts to eliminate international terrorism.

    This is a far cry from the objective on which so many human beings agree. However, we all hope that these barbaric acts will bring out the best in this humanity, in all these countries and peoples, by generating solidarity in the refusal to let terror and horror win over democracy, freedom and human rights.

    I can understand why the NDP motion is asking us to urge the government to table a report setting out the steps to implement an action plan to fight the rising tide of intolerance and racism directed against Arab and Muslim Canadians, in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

    We all know that it is not up to the federal government alone to stop the rise of intolerance and racism. It can set out a plan, but the government of Quebec also has a role to play and, in the hours immediately following these horrible events, announced the action it was taking. I will read from a speech given by Bernard Landry on September 14. He said as follows:

For many communities, Quebec, and Montreal in particular, have represented a land of exile and asylum, a welcome refuge for people seeking peace and security. Ethnic diversity is one of our nation's most valued traits. Together, united, nothing can alter the solidarity which we have always shown--

    He also said:

We must avoid hasty and extreme generalizations. Let us not allow the terrorists to sow hatred where they have failed to sow destruction.

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    He put these principles into action by striking a committee on Thursday, September 27. The purpose of this committee, which includes several ministers, one of them the Minister of Education, is to co-ordinate efforts with respect not just to the economy and jobs, but also with respect to intercommunity relations, for precisely the same reasons as set out in the motion.

    I am being told that my time is up. It is indeed short when talking about matters as pressing as these.

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    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby--Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I wish to thank the hon. member for Mercier, the Bloc Quebecois critic, for supporting our motion.

    I know that the member has just returned from sessions of the European Parliament and I would like her, if possible, to share with our parliament the discussions and the resolutions it adopted with respect to this important issue.

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    Ms. Francine Lalonde: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for giving me this opportunity. In fact, the Council of Europe's parliamentary assembly spent a day and a half, which is quite exceptional and something I have never seen, debating this important matter.

    The political affairs commission submitted a resolution that I should forward to all members of the House.

    This resolution contains many of the points raised in the debate today by the Bloc Quebecois, the NDP and the Liberals, addressing the possibility of a reaction, but one which must be targeted and which does not harm civilians.

    The Council of Europe's parliamentary assembly also cautioned against intolerance and racism, without naming the communities mentioned in his party's motion, which we ourselves named in our speech. This was done at the request of countries who said that the resolution must go further. It was intended to encompass more than the events of September; it is an indictment of all terrorists. As such, it says that no nationality, people, ethnic or religious group should be identified with the terrorist attacks.

    The motions on the assembly's agenda were broad and truly shared. Nor was there any attempt to shy away from the long term economic, social and political causes which provide fertile ground for the support and networks that extremists need. This is something we ourselves have mentioned in the House.

    A resolution was therefore passed. Recommendations were also passed by the committee of ministers. The Council of Europe will therefore wait for the ministers' report.

    I think that, because I was there, I could see the extent to which the entire world was outraged. The positive outcome Kofi Annan hopes to see rise from the still smoking ruins is a sense of solidarity and a desire to reaffirm the fundamental characteristics of humanity, of humankind. This is what gives us the greatest strength in the times we are now living in and are just beginning to live in, because we do not know what this afternoon or tomorrow morning holds in store for us.

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    Mr. Antoine Dubé (Lévis-et-Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, BQ): Mr. Speaker, like the hon. member for Mercier, I too would like to congratulate our colleague from the New Democratic Party for initiating this debate in the House today.

    It is as important today as it has been since September 11, particularly because today we see the focus being concentrated on more precise and more targeted declarations of war. This is an appropriate time to speak of respecting human rights.

    I would like to repeat the NDP motion, because every word of it is important. It reads:

That this House:

(a) condemn the terrorist attacks in the United States—as crimes against humanity, and call for the perpetrators to be brought to justice in accordance with international law and within the framework of the United Nations—

    I believe that what happened on September 11 may have made North Americans aware of the existence of terrorism. The more we examine the issue, the more we realize that terrorism has been around for a long time and that it can be found in many places on our planet.

    The events of September 11 have raised Canadians' and Quebecers' awareness of this problem, because they have felt more affected. While the attacks were aimed more specifically at the Americans, we must not think that we here are free from terrorism. Much as we would not want it to happen here, it could.

    The first part of the motion says that reference must be made to international law and within the framework of the United Nations. This would be desirable. Since September 11, we have only to turn on the television or read the newspaper or listen to the comments coming from all sides, to realize this is perceived as an American crisis, whereas it must be placed instead in a context of terrorism against democracy, against individual freedoms, against human rights.

    I believe that all countries of the world should form as broad and as effective a coalition as possible in order to fight terrorism, which is taking on totally new and different forms.

    For example, there is an International convention for the suppression of terrorist bombings. The events of September 11 had nothing to do with conventional bombs. Aircraft were used in attacks on buildings. Not only were there victims on the planes, there were far more because of all the people in the buildings. This has affected many aspects of people's lives and thousands no longer feel safe to fly; this has meant a heavy blow to the economy.

    The second paragraph of the NDP motion reads as follows:

(b) endorse the objectives of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001) and call upon the Government, in accordance with this resolution, to deliver a report to the U.N. Security Council Committee, within 90 days, setting out the steps Canada will take to implement resolution 1373, and further direct the Government to table this report in the House.

    I think that we have to acknowledge that this morning's debate has been carried out in a non-partisan manner. The minister promised us that he would table the report in the House.

    As far as we are concerned, it will take more than tabling reports in the House. During a Bloc Quebecois opposition day last week, we proposed that there be a vote by parliamentarians if ever a military offensive was to be undertaken.

    The UN resolution is comprehensive. It contains nine elements, but it would take too long to list them all here.

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    The first element deals with the financing of terrorist acts and consists of freezing funds and other financial assets of persons who commit, or who attempt to commit, terrorist acts. It contains a whole series of measures to this effect.

    While I do not wish to make a partisan speech this morning, I cannot help but note that Canada has yet to ratify two international conventions regarding terrorism. This is regrettable, in my opinion. The first convention, which I referred to earlier, the convention on the suppression of terrorist bombings, makes all terrorist activity illegal and requires that states party to the convention prohibit all terrorist activity through their own laws. Thus, any person who takes part in a terrorist attack, inside or outside a country's borders, would be imprisoned.

    This convention has yet to be ratified and I think that the government should move quickly to get parliament to ratify it, or at the very least, refer it to the relevant parliamentary committee as soon as possible. I hope this will be done in the days or weeks to come.

    There is a second convention. It is the convention for the suppression of terrorist funding. The Americans acted very quickly. We saw President Bush's statement last week to this effect, in which he invited other nations to do likewise. This then is something we must do quickly.

    I am no expert on international matters since my role as an MP does not require me to be. However, it does require me to listen to and hear the people who have sometimes divergent opinions to express. There is no feeling of consensus on these issues. On the weekend, my constituents pointed out that, following reports on the CBC, in particular, they feared Canada may have many terrorist organizations represented by individuals within its borders. They expressed their concerns about this.

    According to the Internet site of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service:

With perhaps the singular exception of the United States, there are more international terrorist organizations active here than any other country of the world. As of mid-1998, the Service’s Counter-Terrorism Branch was investigating over 50 organizational targets and about 350 individual targets.

    That is not my opinion. I rely on what this federal body reports. I continue:

The vast majority of terrorist activities in Canada relate to the support of actions elsewhere that are linked to homeland conflicts. These activities include providing safe haven for terrorist supporters and may involve using the refugee stream to enter Canada, or immigrant smuggling.

    I am not saying that I am opposed to admitting refugees but, under the United Nations convention for the suppression of terrorism, all countries must be asked to be very cautious when refugees knock at their door, and to pay particular attention to the past activities of these people and their possible connections with terrorist networks. I do support the NDP's objective, which insists that this must not mark the beginning of a witch hunt against people who have nothing to do with terrorists. To be an Arab in Canada does not mean to be a terrorist. There are over 1.5 billion Arabs in the world, but there is not of course 1.5 billion terrorists. So, this is an invitation to all Canadians.

    However, there is one aspect of the NDP motion with which I do not necessarily disagree, but which should be qualified. In my riding and in my region, I do not feel with the same acuteness any anti-Arab of anti-Muslim movement.

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    The federal state has a role to play, but when we think about schools, we should not forget that the provinces also have a role and we must ask all of them to fulfill it. I know that, in Quebec, Mr. Landry has already asked the public to be as tolerant as possible.

[English]

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    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the very distinguished member for Dewdney--Alouette.

    It is interesting to talk about this subject again. A minute ago I was reading through the motion and highlighting what I thought was important. I ended up highlighting every single word because every single word is important.

    I want to start with the last issue, which the last speaker spoke about it as did the member for Portage--Lisgar. The member from Portage seemed to take exception to the statement that there is a rising tide of intolerance and racism in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks. I take exception to his taking exception to that fact, because I think it is true.

    Last week I had occasion to meet with several families of Arab or Muslim background, perhaps 30 families. We were talking about a completely different subject, but the minute this subject came up they just went silent. I asked them if they had been feeling an impact from this. Those people were not at the meeting because of the issue of racism or intolerance, but to a person they have all felt pressure in the Muslim community.

    I do not know if we can classify it as an epidemic. I do not think that is the right word, but there is certainly the feeling that the pressure is on that community. We in the House have to do everything we can to make sure that people understand that, as the minister said today, the terrorist acts do not reflect the Muslim community or people with Arab backgrounds or anything else. The attackers were terrorists, evil, wrong people, and they should not be associated with these other communities for any other reason.

    Once again here we are talking about this issue, which is an indication of how much the terrorist act of September 11 has impacted the whole world and especially Canada. Not only did we experience fatalities of Canadians who were directly involved, but many aspects of our lives have changed. Parliament has changed. Security on the Hill has changed. Business has changed. Yesterday we talked about Air Canada all night and now we are talking about terrorism again today. This has taken away our preoccupation with and attention on other issues and has really changed the way we do business here.

    Minutes ago I talked to a man with a company in the trucking business. He told me that his trucks are all parked in the yard. There is no business because of what happened on September 11. There was an immediate impact after September 11 and his business has declined to the point now that all his trucks are parked.

    Last weekend I went to a ribbon cutting for a plaque commemorating an internment camp for Ukrainians, from the first world war. The plaque was not there because of transportation delays as a result of security at the border and so on, and if anybody in Canada says it is somebody else's war, it is not our problem, let somebody else take this on, it is absolutely our problem. It is our duty to take part in this whole offensive, diplomatically, economically and militarily. It is our duty to support our friends and it is our duty to support and protect the quality of life in Canada.

    However we have been really slow to react in this country. I noticed that the headline in one of the national papers today is “Blair to Declare War Today”. It is amazing that other countries are so far ahead of us. I am not suggesting that we should declare war, but at least yesterday the government announced that we will have a committee to deal with security issues. We are behind the other countries involved in this whole reaction to September 11. I am pleased to see that the Minister of Foreign Affairs has been selected to chair that committee. I am sure he will do a really good job. He has been very firm in his position all through this great debate about terrorism.

    The motion today deals with several different subjects. The first point asks the House to condemn the terrorist attacks in the United States as “crimes against humanity”. The attack is even more than that. It is a crime against humanity, democracy and quality of life. It is a crime against everything we stand for and do and think.

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    From my point of view we support that part of the motion. In fact we support all parts of the motion. However, the second part is the most interesting to me. That is the part where it asks us to endorse the objectives of the United Nations Security Council resolution 1373. Here is the tool that will allow us to do the job that has to be done. While I do not always agree with resolutions of the United Nations, this is a well crafted one.

    I want to briefly summarize some of the aspects of the resolution because parliament and the government should move as quickly as possible to put the legislation in place so we can use this tool in the fight against terrorism.

    The first part of resolution 1373 is an attempt to end the financing of terrorism groups. The purpose is to prevent and suppress the financing of terrorist acts, criminalize the wilful provision or collection of funds with the intention that the funds should be used for the fight against terrorism. This is an intelligent, non-military action that we can take as a government and as a parliament to fight terrorism.

    The second part of the resolution declares that all states shall refrain from providing any form of support, active or passive, to entities or persons involved in terrorist acts. Any country in effect that hides terrorists, or provides a safe haven for terrorists or protects them will incur the wrath of the United Nations and its members.

    Third, section 3 of the resolution declares that all states shall find ways of intensifying and accelerating the exchange of operational information, especially regarding the movement of terrorists, forged travel documents, traffic in arms, use of communications technology and so on.

    One thing that amazed me after the September 11 tragedy was how fast the intelligence agencies around the world uncovered these planned actions and conspiracies to carry out these awful crimes in the United States. Now it is said that there are several more planned. If that resolution had been in place and if all the intelligence agencies around the world had been sharing information on this very subject, perhaps thousands of people might be alive today, including many Canadians. That part of the resolution is right.

    As far as the NDP motion goes, I totally agree that there should be no vacillation nor hesitation. We should do everything we can in parliament and in the government to implement resolution 1373. We should get on with it as fast as we can because it is important to Canadians.

    Canadians have always wanted to be part of the United Nations operation. They do not want us going off in our own direction. They want to feel comfortable that there are other partners in these efforts, whether it be Desert Storm or the war against terrorism.

    The motion also calls for a report to the House. This brings up another issue. Many parliamentarians, including myself, feel that we are being left out. In the foreign affairs committee this morning we called on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to give a report to us on this at this very critical time. There was some indication that he might be busy and could not come. I am sure he is busy, but it is important for the foreign affairs committee to hear from the minister if we are to be part of this exercise and effort to fight terrorism.

    The last part of the NDP motion is to develop an action plan to implement resolution 1373. For all the reasons I gave before in support of the resolution, I support this part of the motion too. The government should be working very quickly to put in place an action plan and let us be part of that plan. Let us help develop a plan and implement it. Even though this does not happen very often, I think the government would find that there would be total unanimity in the House to do that.

    I will wind up by saying that we support the motion by the NDP. I personally support every single aspect of it. I want to again emphasize the issue about intolerance and racism. I believe it is an issue. In Nova Scotia we have had windows smashed. We have had threats. We have had all kinds of awful remarks made to people who are totally innocent bystanders and should not be involved in this awful situation.

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    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure also to add my voice of support to the motion before us brought forward by our colleagues from the New Democratic Party. It is a well worded and well thought out motion. Members of the Progressive Conservative Democratic Representative coalition are supportive of the motion.

    I would like to frame my comments in three areas today. The first is the government's response to the events of September 11. The second is a response to this actual motion. The third is what our response should be as members of parliament to the events surrounding September 11 and the actions that need to be taken as a result of those events.

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     Let me start with the good news first. I commend the government for its response on the actual day of September 11 when airplanes were being diverted and also the Canadian people who responded so overwhelmingly with their good nature to help stranded travellers from around the world who unexpectedly ended up here in Canada.

    The memorial service held on the first Friday after the tragic events was a positive event which showed that Canadians were concerned about this issue and that we had great support for our friends and neighbours in the United States, our closest friend and ally. We commend the Prime Minister for going to ground zero this past weekend, perhaps later than he should have, and we commend him for inviting the leaders of the opposition parties to go as well. That is the good news.

    There are things that could have been and still can be improved in the government's response to the issues surrounding September 11. There seems to be a hesitancy to come to parliament with concrete plans and actions as to what the government is doing. We have been given glimpses into what the government will do in the future through media reports and speeches given at party fundraisers. We invite the government at this time to make these suggestions and come forward with these ideas in this place.

    If ever there were a time in our history as a country and as a world where there is an opportunity for leadership and opportunity to operate in a non-partisan way, it is now. There is goodwill among the members of the opposition toward the government at this time to work together in a way we have never seen because of a set of tragic circumstances which none of us could have foreseen. There is a time right now for us to grasp together this goodwill and put it into play.

    Members from every party are waiting to roll up their sleeves and get involved. Many who are on particular committees are involved already. Others are feeling a bit shut out of the process, as my colleague just mentioned. We want to be involved with the government. We have some ideas and suggestions that we think are good and we know the government has good ideas. Let us make this place more meaningful and relevant by bringing them to the floor of the House of Commons, by striking some special committees, by getting the members involved and by bringing together the ministers directly responsible so we can move forward in a co-ordinated way.

    Canadians are waiting for that. They are urging us as leaders in the country to do this. There is goodwill from Canadians and members to do this. Let us get on with it. I would urge the government to demonstrate by its actions some bigger steps of leadership. We acknowledge it is a difficult task and it can be all-consuming, but at the same time we encourage it to move forward and trust not only its colleagues across the way but the people of the country by demonstrating leadership in areas in which it has been lacking in some degree to this point.

    I was disappointed that the Prime Minister did not go to the United States quicker, or perhaps even attend the joint session of the speech given by President Bush a week ago.

    I was disappointed with the minister for multiculturalism yesterday. She has been rather silent over the last couple of weeks since September 11. Then the first major public attention she received turned out to be rather negative. She was in attendance at a speech given with extremist language directed toward the United States and sat in silence.

    That is not the kind of message we want to send out not only to Canadians but to our neighbours to the south. We want to combat extremist language and attitudes of intolerance and hatred toward people within communities across Canada and also toward our neighbours to the south. We cannot have one without the other. We must stand against intolerance and extremism in all circumstances. That definitely did not show leadership on the part of the minister for multiculturalism.

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    In fact, I said earlier in this place that I agreed with the comments made by the New Democratic Party member for Halifax who condemned those comments. I echo her comments that the minister's credibility is seriously damaged in the area of implementing any kind of plan or program to combat the intolerance in these communities that are receiving these kinds of attacks in light of the events of September 11.

    The motion brought forward by the NDP states that there needs to be a detailed plan with budgets and timelines laid out before the House, and I agree with that. How could we then expect the current minister for multiculturalism to be the one to implement such a plan given her woeful record in this area in the last several months in this place? We need a credible display of leadership in this area.

    I want to touch briefly on the motion. It is a detailed motion, but I particularly want to pay attention to the last section that talks about a plan. It states:

--the steps Canada will take to implement an action plan, including detailed budgets and timetables, to fight the rising tide of intolerance and racism, directed against Arab and Muslim Canadians, in the aftermath of the September 11th terrorist attacks.

    That is a good part of the motion. I disagree with others in the House who have said that they cannot support the motion because of this wording. I believe this strengthens the motion and we should all support this part of it.

    We should go even a little further and ask the government for a detailed budget and detailed plans on issues such as border security and funding to the RCMP, CSIS and our customs agents who are the frontline workers when it comes to border security, airport security and other measures. This is another area the government needs to improve on. It needs to have ideas and plans specifically related to these issues, as well as the ones outlined by the New Democratic motion.

    I would like to move to what our response should be. Our response should be to support this motion, to ask for more details, to move ahead and to work together in a non-partisan way.

    The leader of our coalition made a good suggestion yesterday when he said that the government and the Prime Minister could show some leadership by including the leaders of the other parties in the Privy Council as the situation gets more serious so that we could, in a concrete way, see the actions of this government to be inclusive of all parliament. Then we could march together united against terrorism, against extremism, and against those who would use the name of a particular religion to sully the reputation of many others. We must fight these things in our country and our world. We must move ahead in a unified way.

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    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the hon. member for Palliser.

    I rise to speak in strong support of the motion which is now before the House which effectively calls on the House to endorse three fundamental principles.

    First, it reiterates in the strongest possible terms our condemnation of the terrorist attacks in the United States on September 11. It makes it very clear that we view these as crimes against humanity and it calls for the perpetrators to be brought to justice in accordance with international law and within the framework of the United Nations.

    As well, the motion endorses the objectives of the UN Security Council resolution that was recently adopted with respect to the issue of measures that member states might take to confront terrorism. I want to be clear that in endorsing the objectives and principles of that resolution we are not necessarily endorsing each and every component but certainly the broad objectives we do support.

    Most important, the motion calls on the government to table in the House within a short timeframe of 90 days, a report setting out steps that Canada will take to implement an action plan with details to fight the rising tide of intolerance and racism directed against Arab and Muslim Canadians, and indeed against other visible minorities in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks.

    I have listened with interest to the debate thus far and was disappointed that the Minister of Foreign Affairs in his comments in the House did not specifically commit the government to that third important element of the resolution which is a concrete action plan to fight the kind of racist attacks we have witnessed. It was with an even greater sense of concern that I listened to the official spokesperson for the Canadian Alliance, the member for Portage--Lisgar, who said the Canadian Alliance does not support this provision.

    The Canadian Alliance does not support a call for an action plan to deal with the rising tide of intolerance and racism. If ever Canadians were wondering why that party is sinking into total and utter irrelevance, all they had to do was listen to the speech by the member for Portage--Lisgar who was not prepared to join in a broad all party consensus in condemning in the strongest possible terms these racist attacks, and very important, not just condemning but calling for strong action. It is a sad day in the House of Commons and a pretty appalling performance on behalf of the Canadian Alliance.

    In the few minutes I have to speak to the House I want to focus on a couple of areas of concern at this time, particularly as we hear the call from some, including Prime Minister Tony Blair in the United Kingdom and others, for military strikes now in Afghanistan.

    As the resolution points out, it is essential that we deal with the attacks within the framework of international law and that we recognize that these are crimes against humanity and that those who are responsible must be brought to justice in accordance with the principles of international law. Today and yesterday as I understand it, the United States presented compelling evidence of the involvement of Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaeda in the attacks in New York and Washington and the tragic deaths in Pennsylvania.

    Surely it is not just NATO and individual allies who must be briefed on this. It must be the United Nations itself. There were nationals of over 60 countries who were murdered, killed in these terrible attacks. Indeed, as the UN secretary general said yesterday, in response to these attacks we must recognize that it is an assault on the founding principles of the United Nations itself. It is in that light that we call today for the United Nations to be playing the key role, not the United States alone or the United States having put together a coalition within NATO under article 5, but the response to this crime must be within the framework of the United Nations itself. Indeed there are precedents for that.

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     We urge the Government of Canada to act under the provisions of article 35 of the UN charter to call for the United Nations to establish an ad hoc tribunal to review the evidence that the United States has apparently already presented before NATO, as well as to be responsible for bringing to justice and for trying those who are responsible for these terrible crimes.

    There are precedents, as I pointed out in the case of an ad hoc international tribunal, in the case of the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda. Unfortunately the international criminal court is not yet constituted. Even if it were, it would not have retroactive jurisdiction.

    Certainly the crimes we are speaking of, the recent attacks in New York and Washington, would qualify as crimes against humanity even under the recently enacted Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court which includes murder when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population with knowledge of the attack.That is surely the direction in which we must proceed as a community of nations. We would strongly oppose any suggestion of unilateral military attacks by the United States, or a coalition of states including NATO, that shows contempt for that important principle of international law.

    It is also very important that we underscore the principle that this parliament must speak before any Canadian troops are committed to any military action. We strongly support that principle. We supported an earlier motion that called for a vote in the House before any troops are committed.

    Article 51 has been relied upon by the government in suggesting that the United States or NATO has the power to unilaterally respond. We reject that suggestion. There is considerable international law to back up our position, going back to the October 1985 attacks by Israeli planes which bombed the headquarters of the PLO in Tunis. They sought the support of the security council to do that. They argued that the bombing was justified by Tunisia having knowingly harboured terrorists who had targeted Israel. At that time the security council rejected the claim unanimously by a vote of 14 to zero with the United States abstaining.

    In international law, and certainly according to the precedent of the International Court of Justice case in the Nicaragua decision, the United States and NATO do not have the power to bomb. To bomb, creating even more civilian casualties, would surely be succumbing to the desire for vengeance and revenge which my colleague from Winnipeg North Centre said earlier we must resist.

    Certainly there is a real concern about the situation of refugees attempting to flee Afghanistan both in terror of the Taliban regime and fear of the bombing. Canada can and must do far more to respond to that humanitarian crisis which is unfolding.

    Because I am sharing my time with my colleague from Palliser, I have very little time left. I want to close by reading a letter sent by the parents of one of the victims of the terrorist attacks on September 11. Their son was killed in one of the towers. They wrote a letter to President Bush:

Our son is one of the victims of Tuesday's attack on the World Trade Center. We read about your response in the last few days and about the resolutions from both Houses, giving you undefined power to respond to the terror attacks.

Your response to this attack does not make us feel better about our son's death. It makes us feel worse. It makes us feel that our government is using our son's memory as a justification to cause suffering for other sons and parents in other lands.

It is not the first time that a person in your position has been given unlimited power and came to regret it. This is not the time for empty gestures to make us feel better. It is not the time to act like bullies.

We urge you to think about how our government can develop peaceful, rational solutions to terrorism, solutions that do not sink us to the inhuman level of terrorists.

    I echo that call today on behalf of my colleagues in the New Democratic Party.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I understand what has been said by the Bush administration and others, it is really not a question of a bombing action in the traditional sense of war between sovereign states. What appears to be talked about is essentially a military police action in which the perpetrators of terror are neutralized by armed force. That is what we seem to be talking about.

    Given all that the member opposite has said, would he not agree that countries have a right to defend themselves when attacked, if the response is focused precisely on the perpetrators of terror and not on the general population of Afghanistan?

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    Mr. Svend Robinson: Mr. Speaker, certainly we have to look at this issue very carefully. I think also we have to place it in an historical context. A number of times the point has been made that we have to deal with some of the broader issues that arise.

    One of the tragedies in this instance is the fact that Osama bin Laden in a sense has been a beneficiary of the United States in the past. In fact Osama bin Laden was supported vigorously by the CIA in the CIA's battle against the Soviets in Afghanistan. It supported Osama bin Laden. It supported him with weapons. It trained him and now tragically he has apparently turned, and the evidence is compelling and powerful, against those who fed him initially.

    The same thing happened with Saddam Hussein when he was supported. In the war between Iraq and Iran Saddam Hussein was the CIA's god.

    We have to deal with the broader context of these issues as an international community and recognize that we have to stop supporting those who are prepared to resort to violence in circumstances in which we might share their geopolitical agenda.

    In terms of the question the hon. member raised specifically, it is essential we understand that no nation can take the law into its own hands. In this instance if there is compelling and powerful evidence pointing in the direction of bin Laden, it should be brought before an ad hoc international tribunal. That tribunal will be in a position to weigh that evidence with care.

    Should the evidence be compelling and should it be found that a nation is deliberately harbouring that individual, the international community would be able under the provisions of chapter 7 of the United Nations charter to take the appropriate response. That is the framework within which we must operate.

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    Mr. Dick Proctor (Palliser, NDP): Mr. Speaker, this is my first opportunity other than a very brief intervention in the first week of September 17 to participate in the House. Therefore I will begin by expressing my profound regrets and condolences to the people of the United States and, as my colleague from Burnaby--Douglas said, the 60 other countries with representatives in the World Trade Center when the attacks took place.

    I think I heard Mayor Giuliani say in recent days that it was now 80 countries that had representatives there. It is an enormous number and it is a tragedy of untold proportions. I extend my deep condolences to everyone who has been affected.

    As this important debate takes place today we seem to be on the verge or the precipice of a military response, from listening to the prime minister of the United Kingdom and others. This is an extremely important debate today in the House of Commons.

    I think that September 11 exposed the vulnerability of a free and open society to terrorist attacks. We should not be surprised that in the immediate aftermath the reaction was that of anger and even of hatred against the perpetrators.

    The western civilized world and its laws have been designed by wise counsel over many generations. The resulting jurisprudence has been to ensure that anger and hate never become the last words on the subject. We have learned that revenge breeds revenge and that an eye for an eye is not the way to proceed in this regard.

    When the terrorist attacks are referred to as acts of war as CNN does 24 hours a day under its subtitle America's New War, it seems to me all that does is help dignify the individuals who masterminded these appalling acts. They should be seen as international pariahs. Their crimes are against humanity and they must be brought to justice publicly and rationally. As Kofi Annan said a couple of days ago:

Terrorism will be defeated if the international community unites in a broad coalition, or it will not be defeated at all.

    To seek indiscriminate revenge is merely to react in the same primitive and deadly way as the perpetrators of the acts of September 11.

    We are at an incredible point where the entire world at the moment stands behind the United States in wanting to exterminate crimes against civilized society. There is an unshakable commitment at the moment to go forward and rid the world of these individuals, but if we risk the slaughter of innocent people in the hunt for revenge, it will guarantee that episodes of international terrorism will become the legacy of this new century. We want to avoid that at all costs and we have an opportunity to do so.

    I want to shift gears for a moment. I was struck by a briefing book delivered to the Western Governors Association, which had a joint meeting almost a month to the day before the attacks in New York City and Washington. Material was provided by the Canadian consulates general for western Canadian premiers who were taking part in the conference. There was a small reference to border security and terrorism. It noted:

Terrorism is not typically seen as a border issue but the Ressam case has alerted both countries to the potential threat.

    The reference is to the millennium bomber.

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    Just as a very brief aside, Terence McKenna's dramatization of that which played on Newsworld a couple of weekends ago was a very compelling television documentary, or docudrama, perhaps. It was appalling to see the ease with which Mr. Ressam was able to get in and out of Canada, acquire a false passport and use that to fly to Afghanistan, apparently for military training, fly back to Los Angeles and eventually into Montreal and on to British Columbia. He was apprehended only as he attempted to enter the state of Washington through Port Angeles.

    The document provided by the Canadian consulate told the western Canadian premiers that “Canada and the U.S. are working to improve interdiction of potential terrorists before they reach North America”. That is something we have also heard in the House. The document states:

U.S. law enforcement officials note that the United States is a top target of international terrorists. While the threat to Canada is low, the Government of Canada has taken important steps to enhance Canada's ability to combat terrorism.

    That seems to me to fly somewhat in the face of what the executive officer for the Canadian Police Association said yesterday when he said:

Canadians should not be lulled into a fall sense of security when it comes to border security, immigration enforcement, and security at Canada's airports and ports of entry.

    Police association executive David Griffin also mentioned four specific points that our caucus has talked about for any number of years. One is the elimination of Canada's ports police. I well remember the NDP talking about its concern about that in 1997-98. Second, the privatization of airport security is something that we have talked about for a long time. Third, there are the drastic reductions in immigration and customs personnel. Finally, there has been a shifting focus at Canada's borders, from security and enforcement to revenue generation and cash collection.

    Those are important points that we have talked about, both before this terrorist attack and certainly subsequently. It behooves the government opposite to take some remedial action and to do so very quickly.

    I also want to make a comment about the third point in this resolution today, which deals with acts of intolerance against visible and racial minorities. I as well was discouraged to hear the comments from the member for Portage--Lisgar when he said that this is not an issue and that essentially we are overplaying it. That is unfortunate. In the spirit of generosity let me say that perhaps coming from a rural riding in Manitoba as the member does he has not seen or heard about these incidents, but from any number of people that I have been in contact with, we know that these incidents abound.

    We heard the Minister of Foreign Affairs this morning relate an incident from his daughter's school. I know from friends and acquaintances in Quebec of similar occurrences there. I know that on the Friday after the attack it was noteworthy at one of the local colleges here in Ottawa how the Arab and Muslim students were simply not in attendance at classes that week, undoubtedly for fear of reprisal or attacks, verbal or otherwise.

    I will make specific reference to an article that was written by Vanessa Redgrave. She makes reference to mayor Rudolph Giuliani's magnificent speech for unity and tolerance. On the same day he made that speech, a Pakistani shopkeeper whose son was murdered in the attack on the Twin Towers was beaten by racists outside his shop in Brooklyn. Such outrages also occurred all over Europe before and after September 11. Ms. Redgrave's point is that this will increase a thousandfold if and when the bombing missions begin, and people of all races will suffer.

    In closing, this is a very important time and the world of the future will judge us on what we do.

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    It behooves us to act with discretion and to follow the lead of the United Nations in its approach to this attack against terrorism.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for Palliser for his excellent speech. I am sure everyone in the House would agree that any general bombing of civilians or attack on civilians would be the last thing we would want to do.

    The American president made it very clear that it would be folly to allow this terrorist act to spread into any kind of war that could be argued as a war against people because of their ethnicity, their religion or whatever else.

    Having said that, the member also said that these terrorists need to be brought to justice. His colleagues supported him on that, and we support that as well.

    If we are to bring terrorists to justice what do we do when they are harboured by a foreign state? How can we bring these terrorists to justice when they are harboured by a foreign state without resorting to some form of military intervention or military violence?

    In that context can I ask him whether or not he would agree that if the Americans or the allies or whomever go in and attempt to obtain these terrorists as a group and do the minimum amount of damage to civilians, this would be quite in keeping with their responsibilities.

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    Mr. Dick Proctor: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the question and the opportunity to respond. I realize it is a difficult situation for the western world as to how to respond.

    If I lived in the United States I would likely never be accused of voting for the republican party up until this point in time. However I must say that the president of the United States has acted with more skill and diplomacy than I would have given him credit for at the outset in the aftermath of September 11. We are at a pivotal point and we will have to see whether that comes to fruition in the immediate days ahead.

    In answer to the hon. member's question, if this attempt to get at the perpetrators or the masterminds of these attacks is done through the United Nations, I have full confidence it will be done with a minimum of harm to the civilian population of Afghanistan or other countries that may be involved in the process.

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    Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville--Musquodoboit Valley--Eastern Shore, NDP): Mr. Speaker, there are a large number of Middle Eastern and Asian population groups in Nova Scotia. After September 11 one could feel the tension within those groups about the acts of vigilantism against them.

    A lot of them were very nervous and very frightened even in the perception sense. I spoke to a couple of them in my area who run small businesses and they said that it reminded them of the countries they had left. It reminded them of the fear they had. They did not think Canada would instill that type of fear in them.

    The NDP motion brought forward today is asking for leadership from the government to tell Canadians to stop the racist attacks against our Arab and Muslim friends and neighbours. The names Osama and Mohammed are just as Canadian as the names Michael and David.

    Could the member for Palliser give some examples to the government of what it could do to educate all Canadians in preventing racism at its source?

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    Mr. Dick Proctor: Mr. Speaker, the motion as it has been presented today contains specific timetables and guidelines which recommend that the government should report to the House within 90 days its action plan to deal with outbreaks of racism and racial intolerance. If the government followed that it would go a long way to diffusing the current nasty situation to which the member has alluded.

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    Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is interesting that we are again debating this issue in the House. I thank all my colleagues who have participated with their words of wisdom on the issue. I would like to say to the House that we can certainly choose not to act at all but the result would be that we would have no peace and no stability.

    On the other side, we can work with people of goodwill, as is taking place right now, and embrace timely action to defeat bad behaviour. It is my view that it is time to disallow these bad individuals from using time to promote intolerance, destruction and crimes against humanity.

    There is no doubt my colleagues know that the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 1373 which affirms that the world community condemns terrorism and all terrorist acts as crimes against humanity.

    Before I go on, Mr. Speaker, I want to let you know that I will be sharing my time with my colleague from Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Aldershot.

    While we condemn all acts of terrorism, we must be consistent in our action and persistent and diligent to do justice. We also need to build on our success as a humanity and not allow the oppression of people's hopes and dreams.

    We cannot continue to have half stabilities around the world. We need to march and defend civilities. We need to console those left in the wake of this terrible act of terror. We need to console those who are left with shattered dreams. We need to protect those in our midst who by reason of their heritage are also feeling the heat of hate.

    We must be engaged not only as a society but also as a world community. We must be proactive. We must have a dual plan for everything we do now and in the future.

    Those who are trying to dismantle the bricks and mortar of our democracy will fail. They will fail because of our strength and our resolve as a civilization, as a democracy and as a people who have the resolve to rebuild.

    For every action there will be a consequence, and we all know that. Our response must be measured and collective, and there is no doubt in my mind justice will prevail.

    It is important to continue to build on a broad coalition, and what we have already is an excellent start. However it must not be an end by itself once we deal with the terrorists in Afghanistan. In effect, if anything, it should be a beginning.

    In order to carry justice everywhere around the globe, we must have a policy for education, dialogue and engagement. We must invest more in the lives of poor people around the world.

    A constituent of mine, Antonio Bucciarelli, had it right when he said that we must help to feed the poor people around the world so they do not become radicals. I agree.

    I think we have to go even further. We have to establish international standards for individuals and individual incomes around the world. These minimum standards will ensure that no one, nowhere, no matter what will go without food, live without shelter or have no access to education.

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    In my view, Canada can play a leading role in this area and share with others what we have done in the past and what we continue to do presently, but we need the collective action of the world communities.

    An equalization system of some sort could be established and explored. Payments from rich nations could be pooled to help individuals, and I stress individuals in poor nations. As a result, we could target resources to those in need which would take away one fundamental important tool from the hands of potential terrorists, and that is the financial support or the financial bribery that they provide to some of those people who unfortunately, in some situations, find themselves in the awkward position of having to follow the line of radicalism and eventually find themselves engaged in acts of terrorism, whether those are acts of terrorism like we have seen at the World Trade Center or other acts of terrorism.

    We need to encourage the use of non-violent means in order to express ourselves, whether here in our society or anywhere around the world. We need to go back to doing the right thing.

    Another constituent of mine came to see me the other day with a delegation of three individuals. They gave me a copy of a speech made by Martin Luther King. It was incredible how relevant Mr. King's 1963 speech seemed in today's state of affairs with which we have been faced. They asked me to share it with some of my colleagues.

    I will quote the part of the speech where Martin Luther King said:

I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in the stride toward freedom is not the White Citizens Councillor or the Ku Klux Klanner but the white moderate who is more devoted to order than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice;

    This is very relevant today. For us as a society and as a world community not to stand up and do justice and bring those who have committed these atrocities and crimes against humanity, we will be failing the most fundamental rules of humankind, which is to allow the collective interest of the people to prevail and to allow the interest of the people to be protected, both as individuals and as a group.

    I am very much in tune and in support of what the government has done on this agenda. I have never been so proud to be a Canadian as I am now to see our government and our communities across the country coming together in these difficult times, this time of sadness, and trying to build a unified action to combat terrorism and to support those who are left with shattered dreams and without their loved ones. We have come out and said that we will not allow intolerance and hate against people who live in our midst regardless of their places of origin.

    I was delighted to see our Prime Minister over and over again speaking out against hate crimes, speaking out against intolerance, speaking out in support of working together as a community to combat terrorism but also, at the same time, in order to protect the Canadian values that makes us the best country in the world in which to live and to raise a family.

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    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I certainly share the sentiments raised by the NDP with respect to the Arab and Muslim community. The folks I have talked to in that community are as outraged as I am over what happened on September 11. I think it is the vast majority of those people who feel that way.

    I want to raise another issue that is springing out of this topic. I believe in the last 20 or 30 years we have promoted some half truths about the U.S. and promoted an anti-Americanism in the world. The American people were kind of foisted into the cold war. Post-second world war they became the arsenal for democracy, so to speak. I agree that a lot of things happened in the cold war that were not so nice. There was a communist battle against our ways and a lot of things happened on both sides that were not nice.

    There are some points I would like to address and then I will get to the question. The Americans did not bring in the Balfour declaration. The Americans brought in the Marshall plan that rebuilt Germany and Japan. Woodrow Wilson was looked at as the founder of the United Nations. There have been three attempts to bring peace between the Arabs and the Jewish people through the Americans. I am concerned when we are talking about promoting hatred against a group that the Americans are also in this fold as well.

    Yesterday the Minister of State for Multiculturalism said that people were allowed to say what they want in this country. Well I am no so sure that is the--

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    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): The hon. member for Ottawa Centre.

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    Mr. Mac Harb: Mr. Speaker, there is no doubt that as a society, whether American, Canadian, French, English, regardless of what part of the world we come from, the attack that took place on New York is an attack on humanity, on civilization and on the foundation of democracy as we know it everywhere in every part of the world.

    As a result of that, when an American is hurting, we are hurting. Simply put, the way the terrorists are getting around trying to undermine our civilization has to be stopped. Collectively we have to take action. Certainly the Americans historically have taken a leadership role on the international scene. We do not have to go back to the first world war, the second world war or the recent collapse of the former communist regime in the Soviet Union.

    Whether we love them or not, the Americans have played a role in the world that no other country has played. They put the first man on the moon. They have done a tremendous amount of things. From time to time we may be upset with them because of this and that, nonetheless, at this point in time we have to stand collectively with our friends and democracies around the world to combat terrorism and get to the root of the problem. Otherwise, the next attack may be on others around the world. We must stop it now and get to the root of it.

    While we are doing that, however, we cannot discriminate against those who are living among us, those who are grieving as we are grieving. That is what the terrorists want us to do. We cannot create a situation where we give them the breathing room to cultivate and create more radicals within communities around the world. We must be aggressive and proactive, we must be engaged and we must work with communities around the world to ensure that the target is the terrorist.

    The target should not be somebody who comes from country A or country B. The target has to be the terrorists. The terrorists are using the name of a country and the name of a religion to obtain credibility. We must combat that because one's religion and place of origin have nothing to do with terrorism. Terrorism is an act of crime against humanity and we must fight it as such.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, when I was a child I dreamed of travel. When I became a young man I did my very level best to travel. Unfortunately the world is a very large place and I just could not get to all the corners of the world that I wanted to get to, so I decided to do something that reflects my ethnic origin which is British. I decided I would try to go to Timbuktu.

    Timbuktu is on the other side of the Sahara desert. Timbuktu has a symbolism among the English speaking people as the place that is as far away as anywhere can possibly be, so it was a great adventure.

    I embarked on that voyage in my early twenties. I was a graduate student at the University of Leeds in the north of England. I persuaded another young man who had the equipment, the rucksacks, the tents and all the rest of it, to hitchhike across France into Africa and across the Sahara desert to Timbuktu.

    The reason I begin with this story is that it was my first encounter and my most memorable encounter with Islam. What happened is we arrived in Algiers on the day before Christmas. On the day after Christmas we set out on our journey from Algiers, the city, and we hitchhiked across the Atlas mountains. We realized that it was an impossible journey as we did not have the equipment or the money and we did not have the knowledge that would see us across the Sahara desert for 1,000 miles to see Timbuktu.

    On a memorable morning we were outside an oasis just on the other side of the Atlas mountains, not really an oasis, a village. We were just in the semi-desert area of the Sahara desert and we resolved to hitchhike the first vehicle that came out of the oasis that morning.

    In fact, two vehicles came out. They were two trucks and they had some people of the desert in the truck. I hesitate to use the word Arab because that does not really describe them. It is what people understand them to be. There were two rural Algerians or partly rural Algerians in the truck. Anyway, they said “come with us”. They put us on the top of the trucks which were carrying sacks of grain and they turned south.

    For the next five days we were looked after by that party of Algerians in those two trucks. They put us on the top of the sacks of grain and they gave us the jalabas and we rolled across the Sahara desert.

    One cannot imagine what the Sahara desert is like. One can understand why the great religions were formed in this backdrop of the grand erg, as they call it there, the great zero, because it is the most spectacular scenery that one can possibly ever hope to see.

    The only thing that has ever matched it has been the High Arctic because as we rolled on the top of these trucks we would look out across the arid land to the mountains, and what we would see is the mountains that were purple and green in the distance. We could see where the whole idea of paradise came from, people who saw around them the desert waste and then looked over to see the land of milk and honey in the distance, but of course those hills were arid hills.

    Those people who took us on that voyage across the Sahara desert, they were desert people. What I learned from them was that Islam is a religion of great generosity. They never asked about our religion. They never asked about our culture. It was sufficient that these two strange young men, attired in a very strange way, were standing there at the edge of the desert by the road and that we were seeking their help. For days on end the hospitality was absolutely incredible.

    In the evening what they would do is they would stop the trucks. They would cut a dry type of bush that they would gather wherever they could, and we would have a campfire in which they would put a great tin bowl and they would fill it with semolina which is the material that couscous is made out of. Each man would sit around, there were a total of eight of us, and we would share from the two bowls and we would eat together.

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    At night what would happen is they would roll the blankets on the desert floor and we would lie down like cord wood, all of us, myself and my friend and the others, and the last man on the end would roll the blanket on top. Lying out in the great Sahara desert and looking up at strange stars, it was an experience that was a defining moment in my life.

    After that trip as my young family was growing up, when my wife and I wanted to take holidays occasionally we took separate holidays. She would go to Europe. I would go to North Africa. Over the years I visited Algeria again. I visited Morocco. I visited Tunis. I was actually thrown out of Libya at gunpoint, so I have mixed feelings about Mr. Khadafi, and then I went several times to Egypt.

    All of this is to say that I have learned much about Islam. It is not definitive perhaps, but I have an emotional feeling for it because I realize and I learned that it is a religion of generosity. It is a religion that seeks to help the oppressed and puts that hand out, no questions asked.

    I should add in passing that it gave me an understanding of the so-called Palestinian problem because among Muslims, I think around the globe, there is this desire to help people who are oppressed and there is this strong sense that the Palestinians have been wrongly done by and should deserve the support of Muslims around the world, but in saying that, there is nothing in my experience with the many Muslims I have met both at home here and in Africa that would ever suggest that violence is a part of what Islam is.

    I say all this in addressing the part of this motion that deals with the problem of intolerance in the context of this dreadful occurrence at the World Trade Centre, this terrorist act.

    My experience in travel made me realize how much we are children of this world. Whether we are Hebrew, whether we are Christian, whether we are Hindu, whether we are Muslim, we are still people of this world and people of the same God, if you will, Mr. Speaker.

    When we learn that kind of thing, we realize that Canada's strength is in the fact that so many people from various parts of the world have come to this land. While I had, shall we say, this enlarging experience because I travelled to a remote corner of the world, many Canadians do not have that opportunity.

    In the last 25 years because there has been such an influx of people from all around the world of different races, of different ethnicities, of different religions, if you will, Mr. Speaker, I have great confidence, and indeed I believe I see it every day, that Canadians as a people have a level of understanding and compassion and tolerance for people who are different than them. It is the very essence of this country of Canada. It is the very essence of the charter of rights and freedoms.

    When I come to this motion which suggests that there is a rising tide of intolerance, I hesitate because what I think we are really dealing with is natural fear that happens among any nation and any group of people when terrible crimes are committed, but I do not think for one moment that it is something we could characterize as a rising tide of intolerance.

    I do not think it is something that is addressed by governments. I think of it as something that is addressed by parliament. We as members of parliament should lead the way and make sure that our hands are out there in our communities bringing people together in these troubled times to quiet the fears, because I believe absolutely that in the end Canadians are far stronger than any terrorists anywhere in the world.

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    Mr. Gurmant Grewal (Surrey Central, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise on behalf of the people of Surrey Central to debate the NDP motion. I express my shock and extend my deepest condolences to all those who lost their loved ones. My heart, thoughts, sympathy and prayers are with the families and friends of the victims of these cowardly and atrocious acts.

    I condemn in the clearest possible terms terrorists and those who support them. Crimes against humanity means crimes against innocent people. It means murder, torture, rape or violence carried out by terrorists, repressive governments, military dictators or fanatics in the context of ethnic, religious and geographical conflicts. It also applies to such acts when carried out by organized criminals. Whenever or wherever innocent people are killed it is a crime against humanity.

    We often think of the innocent people who were killed in the despicable acts of terrorism in New York City, Washington and Pennsylvania. However the evil web of terror has affected many more lives. The attacks on the World Trade Centre, the Pentagon and Pennsylvania ended the lives of over 300 firefighters, over 100 police officers, and the many crew members and passengers on the airplanes. Over 6,000 people died in the attack. I agree 100% that it was a crime against humanity, civilization and the people of the global village.

    However it was not only a crime against people living in New York City or Washington. It was a crime against everyone who believes in civility. While we stop to mourn those who died in the September attacks let us not forget the millions of victims of other crimes against humanity around the world. The people responsible for these horrible acts must be brought to justice.

    To fight terrorism we need a concerted effort. We need international co-operation and resources. We need laws that have teeth both at home and abroad. In Canada we need to deal with lax laws that allow terrorists to raise funds, breach our security and transportation systems, flout our immigration and refugee laws and abuse our freedom.

    The United Nations motion allows space for the types of changes for which the Canadian Alliance has been calling for a long time, changes that would let us stand with our allies in the fight against terrorism.

    We should focus not only on terrorists but on suspected terrorists. They should not be allowed to repeat their terrible acts. We should also focus on organized criminals. Terrorism and organized crime go hand in hand. The effect of terrorism is visual and emotional. The effect of organized crime is latent and hidden but equally dangerous.

    Our remedy against terrorism should begin in the House with a change in the political will of the weak Liberal government. Rather than denying terrorists or terrorist fronts tax free status and declaring their activities illegal, Liberal ministers have attended their fundraisers to help them raise funds in Canada. They have done this despite warnings by CSIS and the U.S. state department. When my Canadian Alliance colleagues and I questioned Liberal members about this in the House they ridiculed us. We were right then and we are right now.

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    The arrogant Liberal government refused to support our motion asking the government to introduce effective anti-terrorism legislation, to reallocate funding and resources to our law enforcement agencies and upgrade safety and security standards. It refused that motion in the House. To live up to the spirit of the NDP motion the government needs to admit its mistakes and change its don't worry be happy mentality.

    Canada's foreign policy, which is supposed to project our interests around the world, has as one of its three objectives a focus on Canadian culture. I am not against promoting Canadian culture but no one has been able to define what Canadian culture is so how is DFAIT supposed to promote it? Instead of these flimsy notions, DFAIT should have clear and focused objectives and goals. The objectives of our foreign policy have to be revisited and the policy should be formulated to achieve those goals.

    No foreign policy in the world should have double standards. I am not only talking about Canada, but globally. They should be just and fair. Preventive diplomacy should be one of the top priorities of foreign policy.

    Let me give an analogy. When a pressure cooker is heated it produces steam. If we attempt to stop that steam by applying more weight on the pressure cooker, the steam will not stop; rather, the pressure cooker will explode. We simply have to remove the heat under the cooker and it will stop producing steam.

    When foreign policies are unfair, when they apply double standards, favouritism, or use governments or people for selfish motives, they create uneasy, apathetic feelings that lead to conflicts, revenge and terrorism. The root causes of terrorism should also be dealt with simultaneously or before applying military pressure or force. I repeat that the root causes of terrorism should also be dealt with simultaneously or before applying military pressure or force. Hate or revenge is hard to contain with force alone, at least in the long run.

    The motion calls on us to support an action against ethnic based intolerance directed against Arabs and Muslims in Canada. Sikhs have been attacked and even killed in the aftermath of September 11. The motion omits to include intolerance against Sikhs, Hindus and other minorities.

    I call upon people of all faiths, religions and backgrounds to work together to put a stop to terrorism and terrorist acts. The idea of dying for one's faith has been distorted by the evil ones. Retaliation against a religion or faith is not appropriate. This is not a religious issue and let us not make it into one. Evil resides in the hearts of individuals, not in a religion or a nation. Let us look beyond the appearance of a person and into a person's soul.

    It also suggests that Canada's multicultural policies are not as successful as the government touts. They officially promote tolerance. Tolerance implies that I do not like someone but somehow I will tolerate him or her. Rather than promoting tolerance, government policies should be promoting acceptance. We are all Canadians. No one is more Canadian than another. All Canadians are proud of that. The government should promote acceptance. We should accept everyone, whether they are ethnic minorities, no matter what religion, colour or whatever the criteria may be.

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    In conclusion I would like to say that as Mayor Rudy Giuliani said, this is not a time for further study or vague directives. In his words, this is a wake up call and it is a time for action. I urge the government to be proactive and take action, introduce anti-terrorism legislation and other things that we have been recommending.

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    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I want to ask the member specifically whether he supports the motion before the House and in particular the provisions in subparagraph (c) directing the government to table a report setting out the steps that Canada will take to implement an action plan. I ask this question because his colleague, the spokesperson for foreign affairs, indicated that he did not support this provision. He believed that we were exaggerating the extent of racist attacks in Canada. Is that the position of the member who has just spoken?

    I also want to raise another issue and perhaps he could comment on it. The member has spoken of the importance of tolerance and respect for fundamental human rights. As one member of the House, and I emphasize I am speaking only for myself, I want to say that I reject the criticisms and the attacks on the Secretary of State for Multiculturalism which were made in the House by a number of members in the context of the comments that were made at a women's conference recently at which the secretary of state was participating.

    Surely one of the most precious and fundamental rights in a civilized and democratic society is freedom of speech. I would hope that the member would join in recognizing that it is inappropriate and unfair to attack the Secretary of State for Multiculturalism for not criticizing comments that were made by Sunera Thobani during that conference.

    I want to ask the member to comment both on the motion and also with respect to the importance of freedom of speech and respecting freedom of speech.

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    Mr. Gurmant Grewal: Mr. Speaker, I see there are more members who want to ask questions so I will be very brief.

    The hon. member is a learned member of the House and I respect him. However, from time to time he is very partisan and he distorts the opinions of the other political parties. Earlier in the day he distorted the position of the Canadian Alliance which was put forward by the chief critic for foreign affairs.

    Part (c) of the motion sparks emotion. It is very reactive. We have to be proactive. We have to accept the realities in Canada. We have to condemn what needs to be condemned, such as racial intolerance. My colleagues join me in condemning these insidious acts.

    That is why focus on the multiculturalism policy in Canada should be integration of communities, not segregation. The purpose should be acceptance and harmony. I believe all my colleagues believe in that.

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    Hon. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke—Lakeshore, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened very carefully to the remarks made by the member across the way. I remember in other speeches that the member has made, he talked about these issues as being wasteful spending.

    I want to ask the member to reflect on his or his party's ideological position on multiculturalism, visible minorities, human rights and all those things which are not found in the platform of his party. It seems as though the Alliance is either rewriting or writing it as we go along.

    I would like to know what is the present position. Is he speaking on his party's position or is he speaking as an individual? What is his party's position in those areas?

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    Mr. Gurmant Grewal: Mr. Speaker, I am against wasteful spending and so are my colleagues in this party. Wasteful spending should occur. The multiculturalism department is no exception. There is wasteful spending, which is what we are against.

    We are not against the concept of multiculturalism, harmony in Canada or accepting other communities and groups in Canada. However, when the government uses grants or contributions as a means for political propaganda and creates different tiers in the communities by giving more money to one group and less to another, it creates disparity in the community. That is what we are against. We are against government funds, taxpayer money, being used for political purposes to give handouts. That is what we are against.

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    Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is a great pleasure to speak to this very important motion. I thank the NDP for bringing this issue forward. Many issues being dealt with today are of critical importance to all Canadians and the government would be wise to listen to the creative solutions that are coming forth.

    September 11 focused all Canadians and indeed the international community on some challenges that have been ignored for far too long. I would like to dispel some of the myths surrounding this particular problem.

    Some individuals have portrayed this as an issue of poverty and social inequities. If that were the case, there would be umpteen numbers of terrorist groups coming out of sub-Saharan Africa. That is not the problem. Osama bin Laden is worth up to $300 million. Islam is a very rich religion. It is true that many of the people who have committed acts of suicide for their jihad are individuals from impoverished areas. The people who committed these atrocities, the people who were on those planes, were well educated and from a middle income background. It is not an issue of poverty. It is not an issue of social inequities.

+-

     Why would somebody take up arms against us? The type of fundamental Islam that Osama bin Laden portrays has nothing to do with social inequity. They hate us and the west for what the west portrays. We are what the Taliban is not; the Taliban is what we are not. The west represents freedom and individualism. We are actually perceived as being venal to those who want to support the Osama bin Ladens of this world. Fundamental Islam is anathema to our western culture and vice versa.

    Osama bin Laden would rather blow up the negotiating table than sit at it. Therefore there is no room for negotiation. That is why we are looking at military options to deal with those individuals. However it is interesting to look at why people would support them.

    In looking at the precursors to conflict, one of the most potent tools in conflict is communication. It can be used as a tool for peace but can also be used as a tool for conflict. Look at the communication that has gone into the camps in the Gaza Strip, into Palestinian held territory and into many of the other Arab states in the world. Venal, obnoxious, vile communication is used to stir up people against the west. That is what happens and there is no counterpoint to it. Those people do not see our viewpoint and our world. Communication is used as a tool to whip up frenzy and to stimulate people to take up arms against us.

    Therein lies an opportunity for us and the international community to get into those areas and portray another point of view. Some have said this could be done by using shortwave radio, the BBC or other tools as a very potent force in trying to calm down conflict and its precursors. The UN has explored this option. We would be wise to go where people are being stirred up by these vile comments and statements, lies in fact, and counteract that by portraying what is really going on in the world.

    In order to combat this there are a number of opportunities. From a foreign policy perspective we have a great opportunity to raise something out of the ashes. We have a great opportunity to build communications and solid relationships with states that we have had difficult relationships with in the past. I am talking about countries like Russia, the Commonwealth of Independent States, Arab countries, Iran. Many of these countries have come on side at least tacitly. There is an opportunity to improve that. For example, with respect to Pakistan we have lowered its debt load. We can forgive some loans internationally and decrease barriers to trade. Decreasing barriers to trade and removing sanctions would probably be the best way to improve the socioeconomic conditions in these countries. That is what we can do as a condition for working together to deal with the threat of terrorism.

    Countries such as Chechnya, Azerbaijan,Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and many others and a number of Middle East states are threatened by fundamental Islam. It behooves them to work with us. We can start building relations not only from a political dimension but also through communication, bilateral movement of people between countries as well as giving these countries the economic tools to allow them to stand on their own two feet. Therein lies a grand opportunity to build up relations which to this point has been very difficult to do.

  +-(1335)  

    Our military has been guided through cuts. NATO, the Commonwealth of defence associations and a recent report by the UN castigated Canada for not living up to its 1994 defence white paper commitments.

    In my view this is what Canada needs. First, we need a $1 billion to $2 billion per year investment, 23% of which has to go into capital costs to avoid the rust out which is occurring now. Second, the navy at present can only put out one ship per coast. That has to be increased to at least two. Third, we need to increase our manpower from the low 50,000 to a minimum of 60,000 and hopefully as high as 65,000.

    With respect to our air force, we have a great rust out. We need to upgrade our weapons systems on the CF-18s and improve our tanker capabilities, as well as our heavy lift capabilities. Our soldiers are burnt out psychologically and physically. They simply cannot keep up the rapid rotations. Because of this we are losing a lot of very good people. The way to avoid that is to lessen our demands and increase the numbers.

    On the issue of Revenue Canada, my colleague from Surrey mentioned a couple of constructive things. One was that we can no longer allow individuals raising money for terrorist organizations to have a tax creditable status. They should be shut down completely. CSIS and the international community knows who they are, and Canada has to have the guts to shut them down as soon as possible.

    On the issue of immigration, we need a steel sheath around Canada, but it has to be porous. It has to allow the flow of goods and services in an unrestricted fashion. It has to allow the movement of honest people who want to immigrate to Canada. However, it has to be a steel sheath against those individuals who are criminals, crooks and terrorists who intend to come to Canada and abuse our good nature. This is fundamentally important.

    The NDP mentioned the prejudice and discrimination of individuals like Osama bin Laden who have warped and twisted the Koran. In Canada 99.99% of Muslims have nothing to do with what he represents and abhor all of what he says. There is a statement in the Koran, which I will paraphrase. It states that if a life is saved, it is saving the life of humanity. If a life is killed, humanity is killed.

    Perhaps it makes us take notice that all the great religions of the world are peaceful religions. All support peace and kindness to each other. It is the perversion of religion, whether it be Christianity, Judaism or Islam, that is wrong and that allows this bloodletting to go on. It is wise for us to remember that people of the Muslim faith abhor this type of violence as much as any of us in the House.

    In closing, there is a great opportunity after the September 11 disaster to build relations with those countries that we have not had relations with before and to improve communication with those disaffected populations that Osama bin Laden finds as a ripe garden to get to soldiers for his cause. We can combat that but it can only be done by working with our international partners in a multifactorial and multinational fashion.

  +-(1340)  

+-

    Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have been listening to the speeches of course and I will point out that of all the great religions in the world we one has not been mentioned. There are many more besides the ones that arose in the deserts of Africa. I am speaking of our aboriginal people.

    The members from the NDP have also spoke about Sunera Thobani, who is a professor at the University of British Columbia, and her remarks the other day at the women's conference. I personally stand behind the charter of rights to freedom of speech, but I certainly want to publicly declare that I do not agree with the position that she took. Nor do I agree that she should be receive any government moneys to advance causes that are not in keeping with the majority of Canadians' opinions. Lee Lakeman of the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centres was also there supporting those kinds of remarks.

    If these kinds of organizations expect to continue to receive government moneys, they should concentrate on the mission statements of their organizations and not use taxpayer money for purposes other than those mission statements. I ask the member about that.

+-

    Mr. Keith Martin: Mr. Speaker, as a party we have never been supportive of taxpayer money going to groups that would foment hatred or disaffection within our society.

    The individual mentioned has made some comments in the past, and there are others. If we look at Concordia University, we see a heinous situation taking place. Non-students professing to represent the students are asking people to take up arms against other groups. It is absolutely vile.

    No longer can we use taxpayer money or the money of any public group to further that type of hatred and disaffection.

  +-(1345)  

+-

    Mr. Werner Schmidt (Kelowna, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for raising what is a very rational and tightly reasoned presentation on the motion.

    I know he is an international traveller and a person who has performed many professional services in other countries of the world. He has also seen some of the terror and the suffering that goes on in these other countries.

    Can a man who has seen the suffering honestly say that in Canada we have a rising wave of racism and discrimination against people because of what they believe? Would these people who he has served and observed in other countries feel they would be better off in Canada than elsewhere?

+-

    Mr. Keith Martin: Mr. Speaker, we are very lucky to live in one of the most tolerant, if not the most tolerant country in the world. We are only tolerant by virtue of the vigilance that we have as a country and as a people. I know my party, as we all are in the House, is supportive of a country that continues to uphold the basic rights and freedoms that we have all enjoyed up to this point.

    It is only with this vigilance and the support of the freedom that we have enjoyed these rights. If we let our guard down we run the risk of losing those freedoms.

+-

    Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have more of a comment than a question. I remember hearing a couplet a long time ago that said “a man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still”.

    Passing laws to reduce feelings of racism and hatred are totally non-productive and not effective. It makes us feel good if we pass such laws, and we should do everything we can to practice the tolerance we have.

    I grew up as a Germany-speaking child three-quarters of a mile away from an air force training base in the second world war. How did we got along in that community in those years? Because my mother and father led our family to be the most co-operative, helpful, useful and tolerant people in that community. We had great acceptance, not because someone passed a law, but because we proved to them that we were tolerant.

+-

    Mr. Keith Martin: Mr. Speaker, my colleague is saying that we want a country where there are laws against discrimination and racism. Thankfully we have that in Canada.

    He is also saying that the great strength of people in the immigrant communities in Canada, including people like him, myself and many others, is their effort, their hard work, their tolerance and their integration, and not assimilation necessarily, within Canadian society. That is something we are all proud of.

+-

    Mr. John McKay (Scarborough East, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I want to commend the NDP Party for putting forward this resolution. It is certainly something that is in need of debate. I wanted to join in with the first part of the resolution. Members have condemned this act of terrorism and I wanted to add my voice to that of the Prime Minister in that respect.

    I want to focus however on the second and third part of the resolution and deal with some of the difficulties that Canada and this Chamber will be facing in the next few weeks and months with respect to the issue of terrorism.

    By happenstance, I was travelling in Great Britain with the Minister of Foreign Affairs prior to September 11. Part of my program was in London and part of it had to deal with the issues of organized crime and terrorism. I was fortunate enough to meet with several MPs and members who would be enforcing an act called the terrorism act 2000 in Great Britain.

    Great Britain of course has a long history of dealing with terrorism and organized crime. Frankly I thought that its experience would be instructive to us as we started to grapple with these issues. I was aware that we were going to have to ratify certain UN conventions and that charter issues would come up inevitably. Therefore, I knew we would have a very animated debate about balancing of those issues.

    Ironically just as I was writing up my notes, 35,000 feet over the mid-Atlantic, I was informed of the disaster in New York and Washington . It added a certain poignancy to the notes and to the conversations that I had with colleagues in Great Britain.

    The British bill is elegantly simple but quite instructive. The day to day reality of terrorist attacks is much more evident in the U.K. than in Canada. It has dealt with car bombs, with the IRA, with the real IRA and with a variety of other terrorist activities. That is a cultural fact in Great Britain, particularly in London where I was. The terrorism act 2000 of U.K. is the response to this horrible reality.

    First, this bill enjoys broad public support. I was somewhat struck by my difference as a Canadian of the British people's willingness to assume that the government would always do the right thing, would always make the right decision was somewhat striking to me but under the circumstances possibly quite understandable.

    Troubling issues such as the broad definition of terrorism in the bill were acknowledged as logical inconsistencies but of no great consequence when compared with the harm intended to be addressed. What definition there is is so broad as to be virtually meaningless. If the home secretary decides that a group is a terrorist organization, it is a terrorist organization.

    The bill has designated 21 terrorist organizations in Great Britain. If people are members of a terrorist organization or on the prescribed list, the home secretary gets to decide that they part of a terrorist organization. If they do not like that designation, they have within 30 days to appeal to the home secretary to change his mind. In the great unlikelihood that the home secretary will change his mind, they then have an opportunity to appeal to the chancellor of the exchequer who has set up a special commission. That special commission is then invited to overrule the home secretary who has decided that the organization is a terrorist organization on two occasions.

    The legislation was passed in the United Kingdom with one hour's worth of debate in the house of commons and one hour's worth of debate in the house of lords. All 21 of the alleged terrorist organizations were placed before parliament on the same day and by the end of the day, they were all deemed to be terrorist organizations. There were no committee hearings, no public consultation and virtually no debate. One has to congratulate Prime Minister Blair on his efficiency if nothing else.

    To be found a member of a terrorist organization one is exposed to a 14 year sentence.

  +-(1350)  

    Such proof of belonging to a terrorist organization can include wearing certain kinds of clothing; carrying on certain kinds of activities; and, for instance, making a speech in support of a terrorist organization or being on the stage while somebody makes a speech in support of a terrorist organization.

    Presumably a politician who is unfortunate enough to be on the stage at the same time as someone who speaks out about the PLO, the PTK or the Tamil tigers is sufficient to attract the unwelcome attention of the authorities and leaves that politician exposed to explaining to the authorities that he does not really support this terrorist organization.

    It is a charming notion that this situation could never happen here. However there is enough pressure and urgency in the general public to require us to do something. We saw a bit of a chicken little response on the part of the premier of Ontario yesterday who believes that the sky is falling and that the appointment of two esteemed individuals in our community would somehow or another assuage our terrorist threat.

    More frequently this is a simple solution to a complicated problem. More often than not a simple solution is the wrong solution. The U.K. terrorism act, 2000 is the wrong solution.

    The U.S. model is only slightly less draconian. The anti-terrorism and effective death penalty act, I do not know what an ineffective death penalty act might be, prohibits contribution to designated foreign terrorist organizations regardless of the intended purpose.

    The issue here is the designation. The designation expires every two years unless renewed and the American secretary of state can add or revoke a designation. Congress can legislate a revocation. The designations are also subject to judicial review.

    On the face of it the U.S. model is somewhat more attractive than the U.K. model. This sounds a lot less draconian but it has its own problems.

    If I told the House that the IRA is not part of the prescribed list in the U.S. legislation I expect members would be somewhat surprised. That is in fact true. The IRA is not a terrorist organization as far as the United States is concerned. One can speculate on the politics that might be involved in that but that is a reality.

    Similarly Sinn Fein is not a prescribed entity in the United States. According to representatives of Sinn Fein they do not see themselves as a front for or participating in a terrorist organization such as the IRA.

    These are the kinds of decisions the Government of Canada and the House will have to make. Will Sinn Fein be considered a terrorist organization for the purposes of legislation that we might put forward to the House? What about the Hezbollah? The Hezbollah is part of the Lebanese government. I believe that pretty well everyone in the Chamber would think that the Hezbollah is a terrorist organization.

    What will Canadians do? What will the government do? My first recommendation is not to do anything in haste. If we legislate in haste we will repent in leisure.

    Let us consider the model of the judge advocate designation. When we studied the organized crime legislation that model was given consideration. However our judiciary did not want to involve itself in the issue of designating organized crime as a criminal organization. We should also look at the model that we used for organized crime whereby the solicitor general designates who is or who is not part of a criminal organization.

    How will SIRC supervise CSIS? CSIS will be fairly involved and I would like to know that SIRC will have some significant input.

    My final point is to say that we should not throw the baby of our fundamental rights and freedoms out with the bathwater of real or apprehended security. We have a lot of decisions to make. I neglected to mention at the outset of my speech that I will be splitting my time with the hon. member for Oak Ridges.


+-STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS

[S. O. 31]

*   *   *

  +-(1355)  

[English]

+-Family Services Canada

+-

    Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in view of the tremendous loss of life and devastation to families that our American friends and neighbours suffered on September 11, Family Services Canada is dedicating the October 1 to October 7 National Family Week 2001 to the victims of this tragedy.

    It encourages all Canadians to come together as families to demonstrate our concern, compassion and caring for all of our fellow human beings affected by this calamity.

    I commend Family Services Canada for planning events throughout this week to celebrate the importance of families, something we all depend on to get us through the happiest and most difficult periods in our lives.

    In the spirit of National Family Week I call upon all Canadians to set aside some time this week to think about the members of their own families and communities and how they can make a personal difference in the lives of others, be they family, friends or neighbours.

*   *   *

+-Agriculture

+-

    Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, an April 18 report from the solicitor general states:

There is now a growing awareness that the agriculture sector--that is, crops or livestock--has to be considered a potential target for terrorist attacks.

    Next week the solicitor general's office will finally meet with one provincial government to discuss this threat. The beginning of this consultation process is really six months late.

    It has been six months since the solicitor general's own staff told him that our farmers were at risk of terrorist attack. He should have immediately begun meetings with farmers along with municipal and provincial governments to improve security.

    The solicitor general is not the only minister who is failing Canadians. Last Wednesday when I questioned the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food he had an opportunity to tell farmers what he had done to protect our industry from terrorist attack. His answer revealed that he had done nothing. The government's failure to act in a timely fashion could cost our farmers and our economy dearly.

*   *   *

  +-(1400)  

[Translation]

+-International Day of Older Persons

+-

    Hon. Denis Paradis (Brome—Missisquoi, Lib.): Yesterday, October 1, we celebrated the International Day of Older Persons.

    More than ever, our seniors have concerns about the economic and social situation.

    In my riding of Brome--Missisquoi, they share their concerns with me about the Quebec health care system, and the improvements required to the Old Age Security Program. Many of them have trouble making ends meet, as the cost of living rises.

    Ms. Barbara Woolmer, of Bedford, has been circulating in Brome--Missisquoi a petition calling upon the government to raise old age security benefits.

    I congratulate this lady on her initiative. It is important to lend an ear to the demands of our seniors. They have made a great contribution to this country and deserve our respect and recognition.

*   *   *

+-Victims of Crime

+-

    Mr. Guy St-Julien (Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the victims of crime in Canada, and in Quebec in particular, have a strong grievance against the justice system. They are frustrated at being excluded, and demand equal attention with the offenders who have done them wrong. As well, they demand the right to speak when the time comes to make parole decisions concerning those offenders.

    Consultations with victims held by the office of the solicitor general and the National Parole Board this past spring have revealed a rare unanimity across Canada.

    Victims spoke of their frustration at being shunted aside, while the offenders who ruined their lives enjoyed all manner of rights and attentions. Victims, everywhere, made particular reference to the terrible fears they felt about the offenders' return to society.

    Some believe that there should be no parole for the perpetrators of violent crime. Others feel that it should not be automatic at the two-thirds mark in the sentence, without the offender having done anything to deserve it. Many of them feel that offenders ought to be required to serve their entire sentence.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Communities in Bloom

+-

    Mr. Paul Steckle (Huron—Bruce, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to be before my colleagues today in this place to congratulate the village of Blyth for being awarded the five blooms as the winner of the 2001 national edition of Communities in Bloom.

    What this means is simple. When compared to numerous communities with a population of less than 1,000 people from across Canada, the village of Blyth was hands down the prettiest village in Canada.

    I make special mention of the local organizing committee including the five members who were in New Brunswick for the September 22 decision. They are Bev Elliott, Eleanor Babcock, Anne Elliott, Elaine Scrimgeour and Nancy Snell.

    I offer my personal congratulations to these ladies and to all who were involved with making this victory possible. Their efforts and hard work have again placed Blyth on the map. This success is yet another example of why Huron--Bruce is, bar none, the best and prettiest riding in all of Canada.

*   *   *

+-Fisheries

+-

    Mr. John Cummins (Delta—South Richmond, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, for 21 days ending this past Sunday the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans allowed an unsupervised commercial aboriginal beach seine fishery on the Fraser River that has wreaked havoc. Ken Kristian, a recreational fisherman, wrote:

The stretches located directly below each beach seine site are literally stacked with hundreds upon hundreds of pre-spawn male pink salmon bodies. Only the male pink salmon and of course the odd so-called endangered coho or steel head were being culled and grabbed roughly by their heads, gills or tails and thrown from the bunt of the net, some 10 to 15 feet in the air, back into the very shallow water. The pink female salmon were being harvested simply for their payload of valuable roe.

    I witnessed this appalling spectacle as did hundreds of others. Missing from this picture was any sign of DFO enforcement. This fishery combined with a lack of enforcement suggests another species of salmon may soon be on the endangered or extinct list.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Robert Bourassa

+-

    Mr. Serge Marcil (Beauharnois—Salaberry, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it was five years ago today, October 2, 2001, that a great Canadian and a great Quebecer, Robert Bourassa, passed away.

    I had the privilege of sitting in the Quebec national assembly with Mr. Bourassa, when he was the leader of our party and the premier of the province. We can never overemphasize the fact that Robert Bourassa was a great visionary for Quebec. Among other achievements, he started and developed the whole hydroelectric industry. Robert Bourassa is the father of that industry, which has contributed and continues to contribute to Quebec's economic growth.

    As early as in 1985, when he returned to active politics, Robert Bourassa's primary concern was to strengthen Quebec's potential in the high tech and qualified manpower sectors by promoting the aerospace and pharmaceutical industries, and all the value added sectors. He also gave Quebec a universal health care system and a charter of human rights and freedoms.

    All these achievements remind us that Premier Bourassa was motivated by the well-being of Quebec's women and men—

  +-(1405)  

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Verchères--Les-Patriotes.

*   *   *

+-Éric Lucas

+-

    Mr. Stéphane Bergeron (Verchères—Les-Patriotes, BQ): Mr. Speaker, Quebec has a new world champion since the summer. Indeed, on July 10, during a spectacular fight in Montreal, Sainte-Julie's Éric Lucas knocked out Glenn Catley in the seventh round to become the seventh Quebecer to win a prestigious world boxing title.

    It is because of this remarkable achievement, which is the culmination of an already very impressive career, that Éric was awarded the medal of the national assembly, in Sainte-Julie's city hall, on September 19.

    The new world champion of the WBC's super middleweight category showed how, in spite of the blows, the injuries and the occasional setbacks, one must never give up, one must learn to get up again and fight even harder to achieve one's objective.

    Éric Lucas is another fine example of perseverance and determination that will inspire Quebecers. We are proud of him.

    On my behalf and on behalf of all my colleagues, I want to congratulate our champion and wish him luck when he goes back into the ring to defend his title, which is soon, and also in all the other fights that he will have during his life.

*   *   *

+- Byelections in Quebec

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is an immutable fact that democracy can never be imposed. Real democracy requires a government to consult, be fair and listen attentively to its citizens.

    The resounding defeats of the Parti Quebecois yesterday are hard lessons for a government that often and vigorously talks of partnership and social democracy, but which imposes its fiats on the public.

    As an MP in whose riding eight cities and municipalities will soon disappear through the imposition of brutal legislation, without regard for the will of the public, I am delighted at the hard lesson dished out to the PQ in Jonquière, where the issue of forced amalgamations was a major factor.

    In the end, dictating and imposing one's will costs, because the public always has the final say.

    May general elections come quickly to Quebec, because the arrogant Parti Quebecois government has yet to be given its ultimate lesson.

*   *   *

[English]

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I wish to thank the Commissioner of the Environment for her audit delivered today. All Canadians are concerned about clean air, water and soil.

    Once again the government has been given a failing grade in the protection of human and environmental health by the commissioner. The commissioner identifies lots of government plans but little evidence of actual implementation.

    The report is a terrible indictment against the environmental protection the government has provided since it took power in 1993. It provided vague goals and good intentions but little action to meet these goals. Its intentions become little more than just empty words.

    The lack of commitment to sound science which is the foundation of achieving the goals is severely lacking. Some examples are that there is a water problem and yet there are decades old regulations with no national standards for drinking water. It plans to ratify Kyoto but it has no idea of the cost. The government must show leadership and must implement solid scientific plans if it wants to protect the environment

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Byelections in Quebec

+-

    Mr. Robert Bertrand (Pontiac—Gatineau—Labelle, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am very proud and happy to recognize the fine electoral battles waged by the four Liberal candidates in Quebec yesterday in the byelections held in the Province of Quebec.

    Jocelyne Roch, in the riding of Blainville, and Jean-Pierre Miljours, in the riding of Labelle, both showed extremely well against their PQ adversaries. Mr. Miljours lost by a mere 54 votes.

    The wins by Françoise Gauthier in Jonquière and Julie Boulet in Laviolette were very nice surprises, particularly because these two ridings, like the other two, were considered PQ strongholds.

    Last night's byelection results will sound a warning to the separatist forces. Furthermore, they are a good indication of the mood of Quebecers in this pre-election period.

    It would appear that our friends in the Bloc will very soon have to prepare a new strategy since the PQ branch office in Ottawa is on the verge of losing its mother house in Quebec.

*   *   *

  +-(1410)  

[English]

+-House of Commons

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, twice since September 11 the Prime Minister, while conducting himself appropriately in many other respects, has shown a disregard and a contempt for parliament.

    Twice he has made major policy announcements having to do with the Canadian response to September 11, not to parliament but to Liberal party fundraisers. This contempt continued today when, after a special debate in the House on the future of the airline industry, the transport minister announced the government policy not in the House but to the press. Perhaps there was no convenient Liberal fundraising event scheduled for today.

    In any event, times of great national anxiety and danger are times for parliament to be taken seriously and for parliamentarians to act seriously.

    The NDP calls on the Prime Minister to set an example. Perhaps it would lead to a new era of constructive parliamentary engagement. It is certainly worth a try.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Violence

+-

    Ms. Pauline Picard (Drummond, BQ): Mr. Speaker, now more than ever, it is important to highlight initiatives to end violence.

    I am proud to inform my colleagues and citizens that, in my riding,a group of women known as la Rose des Vents has developed a tool to prevent violence for young people in relationships.

    It is distressing to note that violence begins earlier among young people, and that it is becoming increasingly intense. It used to begin around the age of 15 or 18, and now begins at the age of 10 or 11.

    In order to demystify the reactions of young couples to violence and come up with solutions to violence that they can consider, I would invite all those interested in learning more on this subject to obtain the document entitled “Arrêt à la violence dans les relations amoureuses”.

    We must realize that we are all affected by violence, and we must act to put an end to violence.

    Congratulations to Laurianne Plourde and Marie-Pierre Jutras, Executive Director and President, respectively, of la Rose des Vents, as well as to Martine Tessier, head of prevention program design and development.

*   *   *

+-Quebec Byelections

+-

    Mr. André Harvey (Chicoutimi—Le Fjord, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it brings me great pleasure to congratulate Françoise Gauthier of the Quebec Liberal Party for her victory in Jonquière.

    Despite the fact that the PQ has virtual complete control of Quebec's institutions, her victory in Jonquière has shown us democracy at its very best. I promise her my utmost co-operation for joint projects for the betterment of our beautiful area.

    I am convinced that Quebec will be completely liberated during the next provincial election, when Quebecers abandon the PQ just as the PQ abandoned hospitals. Then, Quebecers will be dealing with new political and social realities.

*   *   *

[English]

+-National Defence

+-

    Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, since the senseless terrorist attacks on the U.S.A., Canadians from every part of the country have rallied to lend a hand and make a difference.

    My office has received a number of letters from concerned citizens wanting to make a difference. One such idea came from retired Captain Ken Maybee of New Maryland, New Brunswick, who suggests that we should resurrect the idea of victory bonds.

    Captain Maybee is firm in his belief that a designated series of victory bonds directed for this purpose would not only provide unbudgeted funds, but could give much needed resources to our armed forces. It would also allow all Canadians a patriotic way to show their support for the war against terrorism.

    The Maybee family has a strong and ongoing tradition of military service to our country. Their family represents the best of citizenship and a model of public service.

    I rise today to urge the government to consider the benefits of the Maybee victory bonds initiative and I wish to express my thanks to Captain Maybee for his compassionate patriotism at this time.


+-ORAL QUESTION PERIOD

[Oral Questions]

*   *   *

  +-(1415)  

[English]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is day 21 since the terrorist attack. The United Nations Security Council has now given Canada 90 days to toughen up its refugee system.

    Terrorists do not operate according to government rules and they will certainly not operate according to government timelines when it comes to planning their next actions.

    How does the Prime Minister plan to meet the 90 day United Nations guideline? Why is he content to take up to six months, according to what we heard yesterday, to have the regulations in place? What is taking so long? The clock is ticking.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first I would like to wish the Leader of the Opposition a happy 30th wedding anniversary.

    Some hon. members: Hear, hear.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien: I hope he stays in his job for 30 years too.

    Mr. Speaker, there was a resolution passed Saturday night by the United Nations. We will do what has to be done within the time limit that all nations have been asked to operate within. Many of the things requested in Saturday's resolution have already been done by Canada, for a long time.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I wish to express my thanks for the congratulations and the sympathy expressed to my wife.

    Yesterday, the vice-president of the union representing our immigration officers said that the selection of refugee claimants proposed by the government would prevent Canada from deporting such individuals. This could lead to an even longer delay in connection with the long list of 27,000 people to be deported.

    Why is the government adding another delay in the deportation of people considered inadmissible to Canada?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in fact the proposals in Bill C-11 streamline the procedures, consolidate our processes, make it easier for us to bar access to the refugee determination system to those who pose a security risk, make it faster for us to identify those who are not in need of our protection, and make it faster for us to be able to remove those who we do not want to keep in Canada.

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we have heard it will take six months, not 90 days. We do not see how it will be faster, especially when an RCMP officer responsible for the immigration program told the Senate that in Australia: “--if a refugee comes to their shore without the appropriate documentation....he will be detained up to the time that he is appropriately identified” or “he will be sent home. We do not have that in Bill C-11”.

    He went on to say that if we did “--refugees who come to Canada without the appropriate tools and are in question can be detained and eventually deported instead of giving them the green light”--as in Canada--“to go on the street and God knows what happens then”.

    Why will the government not give our immigration officers and our police the same tools to protect Canadian citizens that the Australian government gives theirs?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in Bill C-11, as in the existing immigration legislation, we are able to detain anyone who we identify poses a security threat, anyone whose identity we are unfamiliar with and where we have concerns that they will not show up for their hearings.

    What Bill C-11 does is strengthen those provisions. The fact is this: we have already taken action. We have improved security at our borders. We have fast tracked a new immigrant identification card. We have begun training for our officers on new security issues and we are looking at old profiles to update security screening.

+-

    Mr. Grant Hill (Macleod, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, let us talk about a specific from Bill C-11.

    Bill C-11 calls for refugee claims to be referred within 72 hours but the department does not have the resources to meet this goal. When it tried to do a pilot project, this is what happened: “There are no facilities to keep them. Some of the people slept outside with a blanket”. That is from the people who conducted the pilot.

    Will the minister admit that she does not have the resources to do what the bill promises to do?

  +-(1420)  

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first of all that party voted against the bill when it was here. Further, its members argued at committee that the bill was too tough. They will also know that we did receive additional resources for the implementation of the bill.

    I would say to the member that I was the first to admit that changes were needed, and we know that as a result of intensified security screening at our ports of entry there have been delays. We have said to people that those coming from the United States do have a choice. Rather than waiting they can make a claim in the United States.

+-

    Mr. Grant Hill (Macleod, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, members of this caucus did vote against the bill because frankly it is too weak.

[Translation]

    It is now clear that there are far too many weaknesses in the legislation the government has introduced to reform our refugee system.

    Will the minister encourage the Senate to return Bill C-11 to the House of Commons for consolidation and improvement by the elected representatives of the people?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I find it hard to believe that the member would have the nerve to stand on his feet today after his party proposed amendments at committee that would make it more difficult for us to remove those who are criminally inadmissible and those would who pose security threats.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-The Economy

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, as well as being a human tragedy, the events of September 11 have had an impact, not just in terms of security, but also in terms of the economy, as the thousands of job losses make only too clear.

    By announcing the creation of a cabinet security committee, nothing less than a crisis cabinet, the Prime Minister is completely ignoring the new economic situation.

    To facilitate the recovery, will the Prime Minister make sure that the economy is added to his committee's mandate?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the mandate of this crisis cabinet is to look after security in Canada, to put the necessary mechanisms in place in response to last Saturday's security council resolution, and to co-ordinate activities.

    As for the economy, the Minister of Finance has said on several occasions that the mini budget and new economic measures we introduced this year are entirely appropriate.

    These are measures which stimulate demand in Canada, and we hope that Canadians' confidence is such that they will continue to spend and to create jobs in our economy.

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the situation has changed over the past year, even before the events of September 11. Those events made it worse.

    President Bush is getting ready to announce a plan to boost the U.S. economy, a plan which would include measures to help laid off workers.

    Since the Minister of Foreign Affairs is talking about reviewing the status quo, will the committee he chairs depart from the Minister of Finance's laissez faire stance and adopt a plan to respond to the new economic situation?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Finance is doing a perfectly fine job and he had the wisdom to come up with measures which are stimulating the economy: the biggest tax reduction in the history of Canada; infrastructure programs, which are now kicking in; and successive reductions in interest rates, which will allow consumers to borrow money for the purpose of buying cars and houses.

    These are all very positive measures to help the economy weather the recent difficulties.

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, during his comments on the events of September 11 on Radio-Canada, the Minister of Finance made the following comment “These are extraordinary circumstances, and I believe our way of life has just been fundamentally changed.”

    When questioned in the House, however, he tells us that there is no problem, and that his budget update of last year took everything into consideration.

    How can the Minister of Finance be trying to convince us that these year-old measures are still workable, while himself admitting that today's extraordinary circumstances require equally extraordinary measures?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the tax cuts announced in the October mini budget continue: $17 billion this year. The hon. member voted against that.

    The $35 billion drop in the national debt, which means a $2.5 billion saving yearly, continues month after month, year after year. The hon. member voted against that.

    Looking at such measures as the infrastructure program to which the Prime Minister has referred, that is continuing, is in place, and we want it to be stepped up. As for the measures announced by the minister—

  +-(1425)  

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Saint-Hyacinthe--Bagot.

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the Americans did the same thing: they cut taxes and they paid off part of their debt, but they have stopped living off of their savings. They have stopped resting on their laurels and are taking action.

    I am asking the Minister of Finance to act, and to table in the House, as soon as possible, budgetary measures to help workers and businesses through the economic slowdown. He needs to get off his laurels and act now.

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the member needs to look at the facts. Tax cuts introduced this year by the Government of Canada are four times greater than the tax cuts announced by the president of the United States.

    Whether you look at measures we have taken to put our fiscal house in order, or investments in infrastructure, so far, the Government of Canada has acted more quickly and more substantially than the American government.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister. The United States is parceling out to selective allies its evidence linking Osama bin Laden to the September 11 terrorist attacks. This reinforces the perception that while the coalition against terrorism is truly international the march toward military action is not.

    Will the Prime Minister call upon the United Nations today to establish an international tribunal and call upon our American allies to place their evidence before an international body like the United Nations?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I had occasion to talk with the president not long ago. The evidence that is available to the leaders of nations is evidence that cannot be shared in public at the same time.

    It is very confidential information that we need in order to make sure that bin Laden and his terrorists are punished for the terrible acts they have done. It is not the time to debate that type of information publicly. It is the time to do the job and get them to face justice.

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, we are not asking that the Prime Minister telegraph the evidence into every Canadian household. We are asking that the evidence be brought before an international body.

    The Prime Minister says that he is satisfied the evidence links Osama bin Laden to the terrorist attacks, but the evidence he is willing to accept has not been brought before Canada's cabinet, much less before the United Nations.

    In view of that, how could the Prime Minister even consider asking Canadian families to sacrifice their sons or daughters?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is not the time to make the type of speech the member is making. It is the time for all the people who want to fight terrorism to be united and defeat it . That is what we have to do now.

*   *   *

+-National Security

+-

    Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, Ontario Premier Mike Harris has named advisers on security matters and has called for a common North American security perimeter. He has also moved to have the tax cuts for businesses and individuals effective immediately.

    B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell has called for a national security perimeter and a common North American immigration policy. He has moved aggressively on lowering taxes and is reducing discretionary government spending by up to 50%.

    Meanwhile the federal government has failed to produce a single piece of legislation to deal with security issues and it refuses to table a fall budget. Why is it that once against the provinces are leading the government on issues of national importance?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, again, if one takes a look at the facts, the Canadian government has cut taxes substantially more than the combination of all provinces put together. At the same time we have invested more in infrastructure. We have invested more in those things that will stimulate the economy.

    In terms of Mr. Harris' tax cuts, I certainly hope that accelerating the cut by two months works. We wish them the best of luck. The fact is that each government must make its decisions.

    Our decisions are related to the necessity of making sure that interest rates can continue to come down and that we can fund the national security projects we are trying to have done.

*   *   *

  +-(1430)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, no one is asking the Prime Minister to divulge official secrets. We simply want him to follow the lead of President Bush, Prime Minister Blair, Premier Harris and others to assure Canadians that their government will plan to combat terrorism.

    Canadians will not benefit from a rehashed reannouncement of cabinet committees or bills coming out of a Liberal fundraiser. They want information on specific steps the government has taken since September 11.

    Will the Prime Minister tell the House when we will see concrete plans for Canada's anti-terrorism measures and what will be the costs associated with those changes?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we have been more active in Canada than anyone else. Now the member is talking about what is happening, that I have made speeches outside the House. The House was meeting here for the last two and a half weeks. In Great Britain parliament sat for one day and today the speech made by Mr. Blair was made in front of his party.

    The reality is that we have been in the House. Questions have been asked every day of all ministers and we are acting more rapidly than anybody else.

*   *   *

+-National Security

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the citizenship and immigration minister has now less than 90 days to implement UN security council resolution 1373, which calls for effective border controls and the issuance of identity papers and travel documents to prevent forgery or fraudulent use.

    Bill C-11 is certainly not strong enough on that score. Will the minister use her administrative powers today to implement the United Nations resolution?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to tell the member once again that security is our number one priority. We have moved to implement that which is within our legislative ability in the area of security.

    We have enhanced security at our borders. We have fast tracked a tamper resistant immigrant identity card. We have begun the training of our immigration officers for the security provisions of the new bill. We are updating the files of cold cases to ensure that we have the latest intelligence information available.

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster—Coquitlam—Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the minister talks about cold cases. We still have a PLO terrorist in Brantford for 12 years and the government has not been able to deport the individual. It sounds like the minister is in a fantasy bubble.

    On the frontline today we know there is no tracking of visitor visa compliance, no tracking to enforce student visa overstays and no system to ensure deportation of failed claimants. When will the minister simply give us a date when these enormous holes can be plugged so at least we can begin to feel secure?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it was this government that recognized the need to update our immigration laws. It has been 25 years since we have had a new law. It was that party that initially delayed Bill C-31 and voted against Bill C-11.

    Many of the provisions the member has suggested are actually included in Bill C-11, which is now before the Senate. We are hoping to see royal assent this fall. We are ready to go, virtually ready to go with the regulations which have already been before committee. I look forward to his co-operation on implementation.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Employment Insurance

+-

    Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ): Mr. Speaker, when he met with U.S. Senate leaders, President Bush discussed support measures for workers affected by the events of September 11.

    Here in Canada, the government has in its hands a unanimous report from members of all parties in the House recommending substantial changes to the employment insurance program.

    What is the government waiting for to follow up on this report and help the thousands of workers who have already lost their jobs following the September 11 events?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are not waiting. We have an employment insurance program that is sound and is there for employees when they need it. There is no doubt these are very difficult times for employees in the airline industry. That is why today I was pleased to meet with union representatives to hear about their plans and their suggestions for support for their employees.

    First and foremost, they agreed with me that we need to sit at the table with the employers, with the union representatives and with the government to ensure that the employment insurance programs which are there for their workers can be accessed by them in an efficient way.

  +-(1435)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Paul Crête (Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup—Témiscouata—Les Basques, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister asked people to travel this winter and to spend to support the economy. However the thousands who just lost their jobs because of the crisis do not have the means to travel south or elsewhere, and they are not interested in doing so either.

    Does the Prime Minister not realize that he has a responsibility to help these people, and will he direct his minister to implement the recommendations of the unanimous report of the Standing Committee on Human Resources Development, which she has had for five months?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the programs are there. Through EI part 1 income support is there. When employees lose their jobs what they need to know is they have access to income. It is there.

    We transfer almost half a billion to the province of Quebec every year for it to use to assist workers as they move from one point of employment to another. I would hope the hon. member is talking to his colleagues there to ensure that the money is being used wisely at this time in support of his constituents.

*   *   *

+-National Security

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, on September 21 in Washington the Minister of Foreign Affairs said court decisions based on the charter of rights need to be reviewed because these decisions have contributed to a refugee claimant problem. Those are his words. After years of denial has the minister now changed his government's position?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think it is important for members to know that in fact most Geneva receiving countries, those that have signed the Geneva convention and receive refugee claimants, have processes which provide an oral hearing at some point in due process.

    We are proud of the fact that we offer humanitarian and compassionate assistance to those who are fleeing persecution. I believe that all Canadians would want us to continue to do that.

    To those who do not need the protection of Canada, we want to have a refugee system that identifies quickly they are not in need of protection and be able to remove them as quickly as possible.

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canadians are concerned about terrorists, not legitimate refugee claimants, and the minister has done nothing.

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs stated that Canadians must put away their rose coloured glasses when dealing with security matters. After years of ineffective laws and insufficient programming resources, the minister now blames ordinary Canadians.

    Instead of blaming everybody else, why will the minister not admit that it is his government's lack of leadership and his government's lack of vision that have created the problem of national security? It has nothing to do with the vision of Canadians.

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Let us make something clear, Mr. Speaker, and I will be surprised if the hon. member disputes it. Things changed on September 11. They did not change for the better; they changed for the worse.

    In saying that we need to review our policies and practices in whatever department, including my own, that is not to say that everything was on its way to hell in a hand basket before September 11. Things have changed, so let us take that into account.

    I will say this to the hon. member. It would be much more useful if he were to work with us in considering the effects of September 11 instead of trying to create the impression south of the border that things are much worse than they really are.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Canadian Airline Industry

+-

    Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ): Mr. Speaker, today, the Minister of Transport announced $160 million in aid to the airline industry following the shutdown of Canadian airspace between September 11 and 16.

    Will the minister tell us whether he intends to announce other measures to help air carriers?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is very important that the airlines be compensated for the losses resulting from the shutdown of their airspace after September 11.

    As I already pointed out in the press conference, we are prepared to work on the industry's future, and on restructuring the industry. We will work with all companies and with all members of the House.

+-

    Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the minister also spoke about restructuring the industry. He said that he was prepared to raise the ceiling on foreign ownership in our airlines.

    Is he not worried that this would be handing Air Canada over with its hands tied to American interests, which will be receiving massive aid from Washington to help them weather the crisis in which the U.S. aviation industry finds itself?

    An hon. member: That's right.

  +-(1440)  

[English]

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I just said, in the first instance we reimbursed the companies for the losses they incurred through no fault of their own. It was the governments of the United States and Canada that ordered for good security reasons the airspace to be closed. They suffered those losses and we have compensated the companies.

    As we go forward we will examine every aspect of our airline policy, our air policy, to ensure that in the future we do not continue to have these problems and that we have a viable industry that serves all Canadians.

*   *   *

+-Human Resources

+-

    Mr. Joe Peschisolido (Richmond, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we on this side of the House would be co-operating with the government if we had something concrete with which to co-operate.

    The auditor general says there is a flagrant abuse of social insurance numbers across Canada. Yet HRDC is still considering offering social insurance numbers on the world wide web. This means anyone, including international terrorists, could apply for a basic building block of Canadian identity online. Will the minister today simply drop this frightening idea?

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, Canadians expect a high degree of integrity in this social insurance number program. That is why we continue to invest and increase strategies to protect the integrity of the system. That is why we tripled the number of investigations into fraud and abuse of the social insurance number.

    The auditor general has reviewed our approach and concurs with the strategies that we have in place.

+-

    Mr. Joe Peschisolido (Richmond, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, obviously that is not the case. An audit on HRDC's Internet development completed in May said the following:

There is uncertainty around the protection of data, personal information, secure channel, privacy and access.

    The minister must know it is absurd to allow anyone, anywhere, to apply anonymously for a social insurance number.

    Would the minister today put our national security first and stop pushing the offer of social insurance numbers on the World Wide Web?

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we do not want individuals to apply for social insurance numbers anonymously. We want a system so that Canadians can be assured of integrity in the system.

    We have a plan of action, which I outlined previously in the House, and the committee is dealing with that. The auditor general reviewed it and supported our approach.

*   *   *

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. Alan Tonks (York South—Weston, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Great Lakes hold about 20% of the surface freshwater in the world and the entire drainage basin measures over 750,000 square kilometres on both sides of the border.

    In 1971 the Canada-Ontario agreement respecting the Great Lakes basin ecosystem was signed to stem the tide of environmental degradation within the Great Lakes and to restore the ecosystem's health.

    Would the Minister of the Environment update the House on the status of the agreement, how it is working and what the government is doing to reduce pollution and restore areas harmed by pollution in the Great Lakes basin?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the negotiations with the province of Ontario have been successfully concluded and I expect shortly to be signing the Canada-Ontario agreement.

    We invested some $40 million in last year's budget and the state of the Great Lakes report suggests that the ecosystem of the lakes is now cleaner than it has been since the second world war.

    We will continue to work with the American, Ontario and Quebec governments to clean up some of the problems that yet remain.

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP): Mr. Speaker, this year's report of the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, which was tabled today, is a scathing indictment of the government and its failure to protect our environment.

    The report found that in many cases the government is failing to meet its environmental commitments, particularly with regard to the Great Lakes and climate change.

    It found federal priority funding to be unstable, insufficient and declining with key commitments not being met.

    When will the government step up and start meeting its environmental commitments?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, if I could advise the hon. member to read my previous answer in Hansard he will get part of the response.

    With respect to the overall program, I welcome the report of the commissioner. She has accepted the concept of an ecosystem approach. There are, as I mentioned earlier, things that still remain to be done but at the same time there has been measurable improvement.

    With respect to financing, we have increased financing and I would refer the hon. member to the $1.1 billion made available by the Prime Minister and Minister of Finance for climate change measures within the last 18 months.

  +-(1445)  

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP): Mr. Speaker, perhaps the minister should read the report in total with regard to funding.

    The report also found that the information provided by most departments on the progress of meeting their sustainable development targets fell far short of the government's own guidelines and that it hampers parliament's ability to hold the departments to account.

    Perhaps the Minister of Finance, who has said that a so-called green screen is a priority for him, could tell the House why his department, from which participation is considered crucial if we are to meet sustainable development objectives, has the worst grading as far as deficiency in the management of its sustainable development commitments.

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I mentioned earlier that the Minister of Finance and the Prime Minister made available $1.1 billion for one area of environmental activity alone, namely the climate change file.

    We have indeed moved forward on a number of other fronts. I would be happy to provide the hon. member with information on those but I would point out that when we have an issue such as the security issue after September 11, inevitably there will be a review of budgetary priorities.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. André Bachand (Richmond—Arthabaska, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, there has long been the threat and presence of terrorists in Canada. However, the Prime Minister insists that no terrorist cell is operating within Canada and is acting as if these were new threats.

    We now know that Montreal was a target of bin Laden in 1998, the year the two American embassies were destroyed in Africa. Two years later, surprise, surprise, Ahmed Ressam, a terrorist living in Montreal, was arrested.

    Today, October 2, 2001, we still do not know what the Prime Minister wants to do. Probably he does not either. Perhaps he could tell us at least what he has done since 1998 to protect the interests of Canadians against the threats of terrorists?

[English]

+-

    Mr. Lynn Myers (Parliamentary Secretary to the Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the member is raising a specific issue that has been raised recently in the media. I can tell the House that the appropriate police have looked at that, but this is something that the member should know by now is extremely delicate. We always need to protect security intelligence and that kind of information.

+-

    Mr. Gary Lunn (Saanich—Gulf Islands, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, our borders have been described by the U.S. attorney general as rather porous, a transit point for several individuals involved in terrorism. Unfortunately, he is correct.

    Today there are numerous unmanned border crossings where the only barrier to prevent someone from entering Canada is an orange construction cone placed in the middle of the road. At night, people simply drive around the cone and enter Canada without stopping.

    Does the government have any immediate plans to change this policy and, if so, when can we expect these changes?

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.): Mr. Speaker, one should be proud that Canada customs started to reform the question of borders a year and a half ago. As a matter of fact, we have a plan in place. It is Bill S-23 which is a fantastic step ahead in the future, making sure that we will better manage the risk at the border, making sure as well that the border will remain open for trade between the two countries.

    I would ask the hon. member to get involved with the team and to keep working together to ensure that we have one of the best customs systems in the world for trade, as well as for the safety of both our communities.

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, last night the premier of Ontario outlined his government's action plan to address the threat of terrorism. He called upon the federal government to co-ordinate border security with the United States to protect the openness of that border.

    The premier's plan includes hiring Canada's foremost security experts to advise him on ways to co-operate with other governments and law enforcement agencies around the world.

    Why are the provinces leading the federal government on matters of international co-operation?

  +-(1450)  

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we certainly welcome any of the Canadian provincial governments paying more attention to security. The premier of Ontario has hired the former commissioner of the RCMP and a retired Canadian armed forces general. I would like the member to know that we have the current commissioner of the RCMP and many current Canadians armed forces generals advising us now.

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage—Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister's ambivalence is what is trying the patience of Canadians. First, here in Canada he denied that there was a problem. Then he committed us to military support on a TV talk show in the United States. Now he has taken the not so bold step of setting up a committee, a further excuse for inaction.

    Canadians want us to join the rest of the free world in the battle against terrorism. Canadians want us to lead. Why does the Prime Minister not want to lead us?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am not like the members of the Alliance Party. I want to know where we are going. They want to send planes first, not knowing where to go. We have to find out. Now we are talking about acting.

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs has been in charge of our committee here in Canada since last week. Governor Ridge in the United States is starting his work only next week. We are two weeks ahead of the Americans.

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, there is increasing demand, including one from the Council of Europe, from which a delegation of parliamentarians has just returned, for the creation of an international coalition and for crimes of terrorism to be heard in the new international criminal court.

    Is the government prepared to support the view that the future international criminal court should be the proper institution to judge crimes of terrorism, as the assembly of the Council of Europe voted last week?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada is prepared to accept consideration of the idea of including terrorism within the role of this international criminal court.

    At this time, however, we need the support of a number of other countries, and even their signatures, if the treaty is to take effect. The main objective is to get the other states to sign the treaty.

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in the meantime, precisely for the reasons given by the minister, and others, the legal commission of the Council of Europe proposed that a special criminal tribunal be created under the auspices of the United Nations by the security council.

    At this time, other countries are supporting that position within the UN General Assembly.

    Does this government intend to promote that idea so that arrested terrorists may be subjected to international justice?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): First of all, Mr. Speaker, yes we are prepared to consider the idea of having an international court for trying terrorists, provided that this would be a one-time process for the situation that occurred on September 11.

    It must be kept in mind that more than 6,000 people lost their lives in America because of this situation. First of all, the United States must be satisfied that justice is being done.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, in drawing up an anti-terrorist strategy we see true leadership, but not from the federal government which has that responsibility, but rather from the government of Ontario and from the premier's office and other provinces.

    My question is for the solicitor general. If provincial terrorism plans exist, which prevails--

    Some hon. members: Oh, oh.

  +-(1455)  

+-

    The Speaker: Order, please. It is impossible to hear the hon. member. The Chair has to be able to hear the hon. member. He might say something out of order. I invite all hon. members to listen to the question so we can all hear it.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson: Mr. Speaker, if provincial terrorism plans exist, which prevails when a terrorist attack occurs, the national terrorism plan or the provincial plan?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me reiterate for hon. members of the House that very few countries, if any, have done more and are better prepared to fight terrorism than this country.

    Let me remind hon. members, because I think sometimes they forget, that if one thinks about murder, high treason, sabotage, hijacking, using explosives, offensive weapons on aircraft, endangering the safety of aircraft, money laundering, possession of proceeds of crime, conspiracy to commit any of those offences are all covered in our existing criminal code, for heaven's sake.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we see laws on the books but we do not see laws in force.

    In April we came to the House with Bill C-16 and we said that it was not a terrorist bill but we were called fear-mongers. The fact is that provincial governments prefer their plan much more than the federal plan that does not exist.

    The national counterterrorism plan has not been agreed to by the provinces. It is still not clear if the federal plan would prevail in times of crisis. Provinces are putting together their own plans in the absence of a commitment from the solicitor general to national security.

    Will the solicitor general immediately put an end to this leadership vacuum?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me say on behalf of the solicitor general and everybody in this government that we work closely with the provinces. We are integrating our investigation procedures; the RCMP with local police forces.

    Commissioner Zaccardelli met last week with local police chiefs from all over this country. My colleague the solicitor general and I met with our provincial counterparts in Nova Scotia two weeks ago. In fact, the hon. member does not know what he is speaking about.

*   *   *

+-International Aid

+-

    Mr. Bill Graham (Toronto Centre—Rosedale, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, some time ago Canada adopted sanctions against Pakistan. Yesterday the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister for International Cooperation announced measures to assist Pakistan.

    Would the minister please tell the House why we have lifted the sanctions against Pakistan?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we acted yesterday to remove most of the sanctions against Pakistan as well as to announce the introduction of the possibility of Pakistan converting up to $447 million of loans that are owed to CIDA to social relief work within Pakistan, in recognition of the important contribution that Pakistan has been asked to make to the coalition against terrorism.

    While I am on my feet, I want to mention that we have also expressed, both to the foreign ministers of Pakistan and India, our concern over the events that occurred yesterday in Kashmir. No matter where terrorism occurs, we must take action to prevent it.

*   *   *

+-Multiculturalism

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday the former president of the National Action Committee on the Status of Women said that American foreign policy is soaked in blood. Taxpayers paid $80,000 to fund the luncheon where Ms. Thobani made that speech.

    Has the Prime Minister apologized to the American ambassador for sponsoring this meeting?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it was a conference on women and children that was organized in Canada. Some person there made an absolutely unacceptable speech and should be condemned for that.

    At the same time, when we have a group meeting to discuss the problems being experienced by a group of people in Canada, we will not apologize to anyone for caring about those people who are having difficulty in our land, particularly women and children.

  +-(1500)  

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, last year the federal government gave NACSOW over $130,000. It cost Canadians another $80,000 to fund a conference where outrageous anti-American remarks were made.

    We support freedom of speech. However, why does this government force taxpayers to pay for this kind of drivel?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it was a conference of the Elizabeth Fry Society on violence against women and the sexual exploitation of women and girls. For example, some people present were Louise Arbour, Justice of the Supreme Court, and Senator Landon Pearson, people who are very well known for defending the rights of women and the rights of the underprivileged in our society.

    Of course we condemn the statement that was made there, but we will not apologize to the people of Canada because we are helping organizations like that to fight for those who are experiencing difficulties in our society.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in her report, the Commissioner of the Environment says that since 1998, that is a few months after the Kyoto protocol was signed, no satisfactory progress has been made in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada.

    How does the government explain this harsh finding by the environment commissioner, if not by its own inability to implement measures to reduce greenhouse gases?

[English]

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, there is no question that the dramatic economic developments of the last few years which have so expanded the Canadian economy, have also expanded greenhouse gas emissions in Canada. That means we have a greater challenge.

    What would the hon. member prefer? Would he prefer to have the greater challenge of dealing with greenhouse gases or to have the greater challenge of dealing with an economy that was in the dumps, as it was when we took office and which would have remained so had their opposition remained in power?

*   *   *

+-Health

+-

    Mr. Stan Dromisky (Thunder Bay—Atikokan, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Health. Pharmaceuticals play an important role in the maintenance of health and treatment of illness. However drugs represent the fastest growing component of health care costs in Canada.

    Could the Minister of Health tell the House how he is working with his provincial counterparts to better manage pharmaceuticals and control these expenses?

+-

    Hon. Allan Rock (Minister of Health, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, last week at our annual meeting, ministers of health from across the country made real progress toward managing drug costs to make sure seniors and other Canadians could have access to the drugs they need at reasonable prices.

    Instead of the 14 separate assessments of cost effectiveness after a drug is approved by Health Canada, we have agreed on one single review shared by all governments. We have agreed to look at the whole issue of how drugs are prescribed and used to make sure they are used only in proper cases. We have also agreed to look at bulk purchasing to achieve economies of scale and save money. These are concrete steps making real progress for Canadians.


+-Government Orders

[Supply]

*   *   *

  +-(1505)  

[English]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Terrorism

    The House resumed consideration of the motion and of the amendment.

+-

    Mr. Bryon Wilfert (Oak Ridges, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to comment on the motion before the House and indicate that from the beginning the government has condemned and deplored the horrific acts on the United States that occurred on September 11.

    Former President Clinton identified terrorism as:

--the greatest security challenge of the twentieth century...we cannot have economic security in a global economy unless we can stand against those forces of terrorism. The United States will lead the way and we expect our allies to walk with us hand in hand.

    The Prime Minister stated in the House on September 17:

--so let us be clear: this was not just an attack on the United States. These cold-blooded killers struck a blow at the values and beliefs of free and civilized people everywhere. The world has been attacked. The world must respond. Because we are at war against terrorism and Canada—a nation founded on a belief in freedom, justice and tolerance—will be part of that response.

    A special Senate committee on security and intelligence, the Kelly committee, found that “to be effective the fight against terrorism must be through a united international front”.

    Canada has reaffirmed that it will not be a bystander in this important struggle. We must win the struggle against terrorism both at home and abroad. We must shoulder our international responsibilities in the days ahead.

    The Government of Canada is fully committed to resolution 1373 of the United Nations Security Council, which was unanimously adopted on September 28. The resolution reaffirms the unequivocal condemnation of these terrorist acts on the international community.

    In terms of the existing framework of the United Nations, it is difficult to condemn these horrific attacks as crimes against humanity and bring the perpetrators to justice. The current international system does not have the necessary infrastructure, such as a special tribunal on terrorism or the International Criminal Court to implement this.

    To recognize that international law exists is, however, not tantamount to asserting that it is as effective a legal system as the national legislative systems are. More particularly, it is effective at regulating and retaining the struggle for power on the international scene.

    International law is a primitive law because it is almost completely decentralized. The decentralized nature of international law is inevitably the result of the decentralized structure of international society. Domestic law can be imposed by the group that holds a monopoly of organized force, that is the officials of the state.

    It is an essential characteristic of international society, composed of sovereign states, which by definition are the supreme legal authorities within their representative territories, that no such law giving and law enforcing authority can exist there.

    International law owes its existence and operation to two factors both decentralized in character: identical or complementary interests of individual states and the distribution of power among them. Where there is no community of interest nor balance of power there is no international law. Whereas domestic law may originate in and be reinforced by the arbitrary will of the agencies of the state, international law is overwhelmingly the result of objective social forces.

    Clearly in the fight against international terrorism, there appears to be a strong broad consensus on the need for the international community to respond with one voice.

    In terms of the United Nations it has established two international criminal tribunals in the Hague; one, for the atrocities committed in Rwanda; and the other for the atrocities committed in the former Yugoslavia. Canada has clearly indicated to the United Nations that if it establishes a separate international court for terrorism, we will support it.

    Canada signed the 1998 convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism and was one of the first countries to sign it. We will meet our commitment to ratify that.

    We signed all 12 international conventions against terrorism and have already ratified 10 of them. The Minister of Justice has indicated we will ratify the other two very shortly.

    Canada ratified the ICC Statute of Rome in July 2000 and was the first state to adopt a comprehensive implementing legislation; the Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act on June 29, 2000. Canada has been a strong supporter of the ICC at every stage of its development and will continue to be involved as the ICC moves closer to becoming a reality. However, It should be noted that the ICC statute, which will eventually establish the ICC, does not recognize terrorism as a crime against humanity.

  +-(1510)  

    The Prime Minister has stated that if there is a need to amend the treaty Canada will always be a participant because at the beginning of this system Canada was one of the initiators.

    It is important to mention the role of world public opinion in the struggle against terrorism. World public opinion is obviously one that transcends national boundaries and unites members of different nations in a consensus with regard to at least certain fundamental international issues.

    This consensus makes itself felt in spontaneous reaction throughout the world against whatever move on the chessboard of international politics is disapproved by that consensus. The events of September 11 have galvanized world public opinion.

    Canada recognizes that the international legal system does not have the ability to deal effectively with international terrorism. The world community would welcome anything that Canada and other states can do to strengthen the international legal system. International law does not even provide for agencies and instrumentalities for the purpose of its enforcement part of the agencies of national governments.

    In the Law of Nations Brierly describes the following situation:

The international system, has no central organ for the enforcement of international legal rights as such, the creation of any such general scheme of sanctions is for the present a very distant prospect...This absence of an executive power means that each state remains free to take such action as it thinks fit to enforce its own rights. This does not mean that international law has no sanction, if that word is used in its proper sense of means for securing the observance of the law; but it is true that the sanctions which it possesses are not systematic or centrally directed, and that accordingly they are precarious in their operation. This lack of system is obviously unsatisfactory, particular to those states, which are less able than others to assert their own rights effectively.

    UN security council resolution 1372 not only condemned the terrorist attacks on the United States. It also laid out wide ranging strategies to combat the threat of international terrorism. It established a committee to monitor the implementation of its resolution and called on all nations to report within 90 days on actions they had taken to do so.

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Finance announced the implementation of tough new regulations aimed at suppressing financing in Canada of terrorism and freezing the assets of listed persons. The regulations implement a critical measure in United Nations resolution 1373. The freezing of assets is an important tool in combating international terrorist financing.

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs stated:

This UN resolution is an important milestone in the fight again terrorism and is a critical tool for international action. The regulations will enhance Canada's ability to shoulder our international responsibility to combat terrorist activities and to co-operate effectively with our international partners.

    The regulations provide the government with the authority to freeze the assets of terrorist organizations or individuals in terrorist activities and the movement of these assets.

    The measures include the prohibition of terrorist funding, the prohibition of the collection of funds to listed persons; a new listing provision which establishes a list of any persons and organization that have committed, attempted to commit or participated in a terrorist act or facilitated the commission of a terrorist act; the freezing of assets which will not permit any person in Canada or a Canadian outside the country to knowingly deal directly or indirectly with any asset owned or controlled by a listed person; a new reporting requirement that requires any person who deals in assets they believe are owned or controlled by a listed person to report this information to the RCMP and to CSIS; and a new compliance regime for financial institutions which requires that financial institutions must determine if they have any assets that belong to a listed person.

    Federally regulated financial institutions must confirm their compliance with this requirement and disclose the results to the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions while provincially regulated institutions must report their information to their provincial regulator or supervisor.

    The appointment of the Minister of Foreign Affairs to chair a special cabinet committee on security is a co-ordinated approach to dealing with these issues in terms of the implementation of the UN resolution. The government is moving forward to ensure that Canadians will be protected and that our rights will be secured for a time to come

  +-(1515)  

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ): Mr. Speaker, before beginning my speech, I wish to inform the Chair that I will split my time with the hon. member for Saint-Jean.

    Just three weeks ago today, the world fell into a state of horror. By striking the very symbols of American supremacy, the September 11 terrorist attacks changed forever the quiet certainty that had until then given us the illusion of security, if not invulnerability.

    The motion presented by the New Democratic Party on this opposition day reflects the public's concern about the future.

    Governments have heavy responsibilities, and this is true for the Government of Canada. Managing a crisis such as the one we are currently experiencing is not an easy task. There are major international concerns relating to political and economical security and stability, and the greatest danger remains worsening the current crisis.

    This is why it is essential to find the evil minds who are behind the September 11 terrorist attacks, while keeping in mind the need to reduce to a minimum the impact on civilian populations.

    The September 11 attacks targeted the United States, but they hurt the whole international community. While Washington may be the main accuser, all the democratic states have cosigned the indictment.

    The heinous nature of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in no obviates the need for appropriate justice. Those responsible for these crimes must answer for their actions to an international court. Unfortunately, such a court does not exist.

    In 1998, the nations of the world met in Rome for the purpose of creating a universal and permanent international criminal court, whose job it would be to judge the notorious criminals of our world. This court had been created because it was necessary to find a solution to the inadequacies of the ad hoc tribunals created in the wake of the events in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia.

    Unfortunately, the coming into force of the status of the international criminal court is subject to 60 ratifications. These 60 ratifications have not taken place and the international court therefore does not exist.

    For the international community, the emergency situation calls for action. An ad hoc international court must be set up, for even the most heinous crimes must be judged in accordance with the principles of law and justice.

    In light of recent events, how many nations are sorry that they relied on trust and a sense of non-urgency and did not put their signature at the bottom of a document which would have made an international criminal court a reality.

    Let there be no mistake. What happened on September 11 was a crime against humanity and, to use the wording of the motion before us, the perpetrators must be brought to justice in accordance with international law and within the framework of the United Nations.

    On September 11, thousands of people lost their lives and thousands of families entered a long period of mourning in which sadness and anger were mixed. On September 11, the world's economy was hit by a cataclysm the aftershocks of which are still being felt.

  +-(1520)  

    There were victims of the earth shaking events of September 11 in Canada and Quebec as well as in the U.S., France, England, Italy and around the world. The members of the Arab and Muslim community are caught in a very difficult situation.

    For three weeks, these men, women and children have felt the weight of looks of reproach and distrust. Sharp and disrespectful remarks and aggressive behaviour have been directed at them. These people, who considered themselves Canadians before, have, in the space of a few hours, become foreigners in their own land.

    Going to the mosque to attend services has become difficult. Taking the subway or the bus or driving a taxi becomes an exploit. Their shops have been abandoned by customers. Even school yards and public places are to be avoided.

    A week ago, I met a dozen representatives of the Arab and Muslim community of greater Montreal. I listened a lot to what they had to say and I know they have a lot to say.

    Like all of us, they condemn the attacks of September 11, but they are going through something we are not. They are feeling that people consider them guilty.

    Terrorism knows no religion nor law. It has no borders, country or people, because terrorists are blinded and deafened by the fanaticism that drives them. They come from no country, people or religion, because any they might claim serves as nothing more than a pretext for hatred and violence.

    We all fail to misinterpret looks, words or silences. The sensibilities of our fellow citizens in the Arab and Muslim communities may be exacerbated, and we understand that entirely. What we do not want is to have insignificant gestures some find meaningless pave the way to intolerance, xenophobia and racism.

    It is in this spirit that the motion before us today calls for measures to fight intolerance and racism, the social consequences of the September 11 attacks. The measures proposed must ensure support to the traumatized communities. They must help educate in order to prevent behaviour that can lead to misunderstanding and ultimately injustice.

    We believe the Government of Canada will act on this motion. It is true as well for humanity and for balance in our society.

  +-(1525)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for speaking so eloquently about the terrible circumstances and the victimization by hateful acts of Canadian Muslims and other minorities. These despicable acts are not Canadian acts.

    Canada is a country of immigrants and Canadian Muslims across the country, and indeed all other people who suffer such indignities, should know that we are with them. Parliament unanimously supports them in their rights to enjoy the fruits of Canada.

    The member concluded her speech by calling on the government to embrace the motion before us. She would know that the movers of the motion have called for peaceful solutions to the September 11 incident. Canada was with NATO and its UN allies in the gulf war. We were again with them in the war in Kosovo which she mentioned.

    Would the member think that it is somewhat a contradiction for us not to be with our NATO allies and respect the decision of the UN resolution that was passed? Does she not feel that we should also be part of this coalition? We do not wish to be part of a vengeance campaign but rather a campaign to protect ourselves and to defend the values of democracy and freedom.

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral: Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague across the way for his comments and his question. The entire response issue depends particularly on what measure we put in place.

    I am certain that my colleague heard perfectly my reference to the necessity to find the terrorists, while at the same time minimizing the dramatic consequences for innocent populations.

    I believe the United Nations most certainly gives precedence to applying a large dose of wisdom to the selection of actions to be taken. I also believe that NATO will understand and will choose to tell itself that, very often, military action is not necessarily what yields the best results. We can recall to mind the strikes against Iraq, and the fact that Saddam Hussein is still there.

    There are, therefore, lessons to be learned from recent events, and prior to September 11, but it must always be kept in mind that we, as citizens, have the responsibility of protecting the weak, the poor and the exploited, who should not be made to pay for a horrible act. Those responsible must be found, but the very many who are not must be protected.

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ): Mr. Speaker, yesterday, when my whip called me to say I would be speaking this morning in connection with an NDP motion, naturally I told him I would like to read the motion. Before expressing an opinion on a motion, of necessity, one must read it.

    I found that the motion was divisible into three parts, because it is made up of three paragraphs that address different concepts.

    As far as the first paragraph is concerned, we need not debate very long about the need to condemn the attacks of September 11. There have not been many who have applauded them. What I have mainly heard is people, the majority and virtually unanimously, condemning them. One need only have witnessed the attacks, even if only via television, to realize it is not all that hard to condemn attacks of this type, if airplanes are hurled into towers where thousands are working, attacking a regime through its civilians.

    Today, my honourable colleague from Saint-Hubert showed me the magazine Le Figaro, which contained some absolutely disgusting photos, heartrending photos, showing people who chose to throw themselves out of the buildings rather than wait for a slow death.

    I do not think there is any problem with the condemnation part. I believe that all members of the House of Commons condemn the September 11 attacks.

    The second paragraph of the motion provides that we should also endorse UN security council resolution 1373, which was adopted in New York on Friday.

    This resolution has the great merit of being very broad in scope. It deals directly with terrorism and its funding, and it deals directly with the actions to be taken regarding many other aspects on which I want to elaborate. It is primarily for this reason that the Bloc Quebecois and myself will support the motion.

    First, it provides for greater co-operation and the integral application of international conventions on terrorism, but there is a problem here. It must be realized that not all nations have signed these conventions. The international community should work to convince all the nations of the planet to sign such conventions.

    However, it is not enough to merely sign conventions and adhere to them, we must also implement them. Sometimes, there are governments that are in no hurry to do so.

    I believe that the resolution adopted by the security council is an urgent matter. All those who have signed it must implement it, and we must also urge those nations that did not sign it to do so. This should not be a problem.

    It is very clear that the international community will not tolerate a nation, whether it has signed the resolution or not, that harbours and protects terrorists.This is a very strong resolution and, we should make no mistake about it, the United States probably manoeuvered quite skillfully to ensure that this would be the resolution adopted. Some of the terms used were probably suggested by the United States.

    I clearly remember the speech of the U.S. president that first evening, when he said that they would go after the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbour them.

    In my view, this resolution is similar. It means that not only will the perpetrators of these terrorist acts be pursued, but that the nations harbouring them will have to pay a price. So the resolution is acceptable to us so far.

    In addition, it reopens the whole issue of how terrorism is financed. In the first days after the attacks, people observed that a lot of money must have been behind them. Many people have money.

  +-(1530)  

    Many terrorists have money and their access to it must be limited. Assets can be frozen and so forth. As recently as today, the Liberal government took measures to freeze many of these assets. I think that this is entirely the right thing to do. Of course, it may be necessary to go further. I am one of those who is not convinced that bank secrecy will not apply before the UN resolution, or before the position taken by the government. I do not know how the banks will react, but generally they are fairly touchy about their secrecy.

    The whole issue of tax havens also needs to be raised. We have long been saying that there are tax havens and that important figures in Canadian society are going to put all their money in such havens. There are certainly also groups who want to shelter their money in tax havens. This is something that must also be addressed.

    The motion says that terrorists must be refused asylum. This has often been heard in connection with such things as hostage taking incidents. The practice used to be to offer asylum to terrorists in order to bring such incidents to a successful conclusion. Now, the UN security council resolution prohibits such offers and, in my view, this is the right approach.

    The motion stresses border control. We all understand the concept of fortress North American or a North American security perimeter. We will have to react to this, I think. Just last week, I wrote a letter to my American counterparts in New York State and Vermont to warn them. The U.S. must not, with nitpicking measures, block off or close their border or slow down road and commercial traffic between the two countries. We have to watch out for this, because it could happen if we go too far.

    There is also a danger looming before the Prime Minister over the sovereignty of his country. In talk of a North American perimeter, it is clear that the Americans would like us to change our immigration laws to match their own. They would also like us to invest the same percentage of our national budget as they do in defence. This holds true as well for the perimeter and the fortress.

    The Americans feel that our immigration, national defence and justice could all be considerably tightened up. We must be careful, however, because restricting the Canadian concept of individual freedoms is dangerous. We must not end up with an exact copy of American policies.

    As to the question of increased exchanges of information on operations, what is generally called intelligence, the motion is headed in the right direction as well, namely that there should be more discussion among the police forces upholding the laws of the various countries. While it is difficult, because the operational jargon used by intelligence forces such as the RCMP, CSIS, the FBI and the CIA, each with their own jargon, can be hard to understand, well I think we better work on sharing more intelligence on these terrorists.

    As for refugee claims, the motion calls for them to be somewhat restricted. Canada will need to examine its conscience about this. It has probably been far too welcoming. I do not mean that Canada ought to stop letting anybody in, on the contrary. I think that people who come here make a contribution, through their rich cultures, to the entire Quebec and Canadian community. Some examples have been raised, however, of people who have got into this country, settled here, and are now threatening our freedoms. There will therefore be some caution required.

    Finally, I conclude with the question about calling upon the government to allocate budgets for tolerance. I do not think the Prime Minister is the only one who has to set an example in this. I too am interested in setting a good example. In the next few days, I am going to give instructions to my office to make arrangements for me to attend ceremonies in Montreal mosques. I believe it is not just the PM or even just the party leaders who have to do this, but all MPs, in order to demonstrate that these people have no connection whatsoever with terrorists who chose to meet their deaths by taking tens of thousands of people with them.

  +-(1535)  

    Members of the Arab and Moslem community have made contributions to Canada, to Quebec and to Montreal. I believe this is an example we need to set: to reach out to their culture at a time when people are wanting to distance themselves from it.

+-

    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, security experts around the world expressed concern about some charitable organizations financing terrorist groups.

    I noticed today in an English language newspaper that leaders of these charitable organizations, here in Canada, are opposed to Bill C-16, which revokes the charitable status of organizations that finance terrorism.

    I would like to hear from my hon. colleague opposite on this issue.

  +-(1540)  

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand: Mr. Speaker, obviously there are all kinds of charitable organizations. Even in my riding, people tell me that they would like to create a charitable organization in order to be able to benefit from tax deductions.

    The answer is not to get carried away and put an end to all charitable organizations and foundations. Rather, there must be an investigation to find out what any given charitable organization does, and where the money goes.

    If there is the slightest doubt that there may be ties with terrorist organizations, the government must refuse to recognize their charitable status.

    Nor should we make this into a witch hunt. There may be some cleaning up to do, and I would urge the government to do that, to clean up without launching a witch-hunt.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, part of the resolution calls for the perpetrators of this terror to be brought to justice in accordance with international law and “within the framework of the United Nations”.

    My briefing notes show that the UN has two tribunals set up in The Hague, one for Rwanda and another for Yugoslavia. However, there is no international court set up for terrorism. In view of the fact that the UN has no instrument, no vehicle set up to actually deal with what is being proposed in this resolution, how does the member intend to vote?

[Translation]

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    Mr. Claude Bachand: Mr. Speaker, that is a good question, and I thank the member for asking it. It is perhaps a point that I did not have time to raise in my speech.

    I think that the hon. member for Laval Centre was quite clear on this. Ratifications are required for an international court and these have not taken place. Also necessary is a desire by the entire international community to establish such a court. Even if it were to be created, I am not sure that the Americans would agree that terrorists, if captured, should appear before it. We must remember that the acts were committed on American soil.

    There are obstacles to the creation of an international criminal court or tribunal. There are those who challenge the legality of such a court. I think that if we form coalitions to respond to terrorist attacks, it follows that these people must be tried when they are captured, and not just by one nation. If it is felt to be a crime against humanity, then they must be judged by humanity. Even if it is difficult to establish an international court or tribunal, that is the goal we share here and which we are pursuing.

[English]

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    Ms. Aileen Carroll (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, last Friday the UN Security Council passed a landmark resolution, UNSCR 1373. This resolution acts on a range of issues related to terrorism, from financing to travel documents to intelligence sharing. Canada supports the resolution entirely and will take immediate steps to implement them.

    All three of those categories are obligatory. It triggers a response of member states that they must comply with. We are well prepared with many pieces of legislation to do so. Some of the other aspects are non-obligatory, but at the same time Canada takes those very seriously and will be engaged in an appropriate response.

    The security council resolution recognizes the right to self-defence and calls on all states to co-operate in bringing terrorists and their sponsors to justice. To emphasize, the right to individual and collective self-defence is enshrined in the UN charter. Canada supports efforts to build a broadly based effective coalition in support of the U.S. in responding to terrorist attacks.

    Yesterday NATO invoked article 5 of its charter. It did so by accepting that the evidence that had been brought forward met the bar of NATO and they had therefore complied with the United States in its request that article 5 be invoked.

    The statement by NATO which relies on article 5 was immediately conveyed to the UN in conformity with the UN charter. Lord Robertson, the secretary general, announced that the U.S. has delivered sufficient evidence to satisfy that Osama bin Laden is the primary perpetrator of the September 11 terrorist acts.

    We have discussed today with respect to our hon. colleague's motion that there is a need on our part to look other than to NATO, which is how I am reading the member's request, how to respond to the horrors of September 11. It is important to accept that an institution such as the international criminal court, the ICC, which Canada was instrumental in initiating and bringing forward first of all is not an appropriate venue because it is not yet fully in place. There have not been 60 ratifying nations. It is also important to note that it is not able to reach back. Once the ICC is in place it will not umbrella or grandfather past events. However much it may be seen as an appropriate vehicle in response to what has happened in the United States, it simply does not have the jurisdiction to meet that bar.

    Last week I had the opportunity to be in Strasbourg as part of a Canadian delegation. At the Council of Europe there were parliamentarians from 44 nations. The discussion, an emergency debate on the terrorist attack on the United States, was front and foremost. As a Canadian it gave me the opportunity to be removed from the emotional response that seemed to pervade everywhere in our country, perhaps because of our historical alliance with and geographical proximity to the United States.

    It was an opportunity to step away and listen to the views of parliamentarians from 44 nations and to hear the commonality of concern, the desire to be there as allies and friends of America. There was a noted difference in approach. It was mentioned during question period today that there was a desire again to move the response mechanism to within the ICC and that the ICC perhaps set up a special tribunal. This may be a more typical response, but at the same time there was great agreement with NATO moving as it was moving and an understanding of the limitations of the court.

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    There was a concern about the definition of the word war. Interestingly enough in the final resolution there was reference to what had happened as a great crime. There was a reticence to use the word war. Perhaps it was a different sense or interpretation of the event. Perhaps it brought a great historical perspective to the issue that we in North American do not share. We had not seen world wars on our territory until perhaps what happened in New York.

    It is interesting that people in countries throughout the world are shocked and determined to stand together to do whatever is necessary to fight the horrors and the evil, as our Prime Minister has said, that this represents. At the same time I saw the commonality with my European colleagues. I have been tremendously proud of the Prime Minister. He stood firm in the face of those who would have us race forward without stopping to consider what was the appropriate response, at the same time knowing he had to balance the values of our country and the people we represent. I sensed that at the Council of Europe and I had a feeling of sharing that.

    It is very important that we come together as a nation and as parties in the House to determine where Canada will go and how we will muster our resources to be the ally our allies want us to be. I would hope that we could step away from some of the emotions that seem to have infused in the last couple of weeks.

    That remark is very personal. A number of people in Barrie have called me. They were terribly anxious that President Bush had not included Canada when he mentioned a number of nations. Others who called were upset that the Prime Minister had not raced immediately to New York. My advice for both was that although these are very intense and frightening times it is important that we recapture the Canadian posture of staying a little laid back, to use Mr. Trudeau's words, la raison avant la passion, to reach back to our ability to analyze and reason. We should not come out of the starting gate with an emotional response. That will not bring intelligent reaction. It does not help us as public policymakers to sift carefully, intelligently and analytically through the responses we need to make and how best to be allies with our NATO partners, allies to the United States.

    It is not easy at times like this when we feel fear, horror and empathy, and when we see all that Canadians have done throughout this whole tragedy, not to get caught up in an emotional treadmill. It is very important we resist that, or having done that, now try to step back and look at the realities.

    Today our Minister of Foreign Affairs mentioned a couple from Maryland who wrote about the hospitality they had been shown in Halifax. It was one of many letters he has received. That is how Canadians respond most typically. Although I am very proud to be the member of parliament for Barrie--Simcoe--Bradford, I am a native Haligonian and I was very proud to learn of all they did.

    There was the story of a couple from Britain. They were engaged and were flying to Los Angeles to be married. Like so many other fellow travellers they had to stay in Halifax. All their luggage, including the wedding dress, was left on the plane. In the end they were married in the backyard of their hosts in Halifax. A wedding dress and food for the feast was provided and they had new friends as their wedding guests. A story that will always be told in that British family will be the wedding that took place in Canada and the Canadian hospitality which facilitated that event.

    There are wonderful examples of what we are as a nation and what we should be very proud of. We can be proud too as we muster our resources, our armed forces and our intelligence capabilities, all that we have within this public administration to bring to the task.

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    It is important to be very realistic, to look at something like the ICC as being the appropriate venue some day but not now, to try to sort through all of these various venues and work with our NATO partners, and finally, to resist a constant emotional response and stand up and be just exactly the kind of nation we are. I am not sure that I can add anything further to that, but I would be more than pleased to respond to questions. I thank my colleagues for their attention.

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    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I commend my colleague for her speech and her balanced response. I would like to ask her about something that has been brought up in debate a bit today and in previous debates on this issue, that being the rush into military action.

    There are some who have made the claim that we need to take our time, to have a measured response, which I would agree with, and not rush into any emotional act of vengeance against perceived perpetrators of this crime against humanity. At the same time I would submit that to all appearances to date there has been a measured response. There has not been a rush to military action by the United States, which has suffered this great blow. There has been the building of an international coalition. There have been consultations and to this point there have been no military strikes.

    I would submit this question to my colleague. While it is time for action and we need to be considering these questions, would the hon. member agree to bring to her colleagues in the government the notion that in Canada right now there is an opportunity to work together as members of parliament in a fashion that we have not seen before? I believe there is an opportunity to drop down the partisan walls, to come together to fashion a Canadian response to how we would help our American friends and colleagues, with both support and, perhaps, military intervention. Would the member take the message back to her colleagues on the government side that there is a time for action and it is now, that there is input required and that there is the goodwill among all members of the House to roll up their sleeves and get at this in a measured way? Would she be able to do that?

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    Ms. Aileen Carroll: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his very balanced and responsive question. I would undertake to do what he has asked, but I think members are doing that. I think they are in many ways inputting into the process. All of us in parliament engaged in the take note debate last Thursday night.

    I will assure the hon. member that unlike those in Britain we have come together and we have discussed this. Sometimes we argue more than we discuss, but we have been very much engaged in this process, as the Prime Minister said, since the horrors occurred on the September 11 and the House reconvened. Members should be assured that there is a great deal happening and that there is a willingness and openness here to bring to the House all that we can. The ministers on the front benches have tried to convey that.

    At the same time, as I am, all members are students of history. The leader from that corner of the House, having been a former minister of foreign affairs and a former prime minister, knows only too well that one cannot bring information into an open forum, however venerable this forum is, that might in any way endanger people who are trying to put together the very response that we are all anxious to see formulated.

    Those who form the government must balance the democratic values of openness and provision of information with the onus of the task that is ours, which is to develop, frequently in a military setting, the response that will be coming.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the one thing that bothers me about the motion before the House are the words “rising tide of intolerance”. Everyone in my riding is of ethnic origin. There are people whose ancestors are from western Europe, eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, North America and South America. I do not experience, among all these ethnic groups that exist in my riding, a wave of intolerance to Muslims as a result of the attack on the World Trade Center. There have been a few incidents of fear, but not a wave of intolerance.

    I wonder if my colleague could comment on that. Is she experiencing a tide of intolerance in her riding?

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    Ms. Aileen Carroll: Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for his comment and I would say very frankly that the emotional responses which I was attempting to calm people about are related very much to the comments I mentioned earlier, the belief about President Bush's omission or our Prime Minister not going to New York. I had no negative response concerning Canadians of Arabic or Muslim origin.

    We have all read about some examples of that. All of us on all sides of the House have made it very clear how utterly unacceptable that is. We are appalled by it. I do believe that these incidents are few and far between. The media has managed to make a big fuss about them, just like the media, if I may make a horizontal shift, made a great fuss about whether or not the perpetrators of this deed came from Canada. That has done a wonderful job of spinning into the American press that Canada has all of these loopholes and difficulties with security when in fact all 19 of the accused perpetrators came from countries other than Canada. None of them came from this country, but this does not seem to get picked up in the press.

    I found that there was total awareness among European colleagues that the perpetrators had either been in the United States or had come from the countries of the parliamentarians with whom I spoke. Europeans do not seem to get their knickers in a knot on these issues the way we Canadians tend to do, and whether that comes from our sense of ourselves needing to gain more confidence I do not know. As has been mentioned by my colleague, it is disappointing to see that kind of coverage enhancing a few incidents.

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    Mr. Andrew Telegdi (Kitchener—Waterloo, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the terrorist attack on the United States on September 11 was an attack on all people of the free world. There are no adequate words to express the horrors we have seen unfold. Americans are our closest friends and allies. The Canadian government stands in solidarity with them.

    Terrorism has irrevocably changed our world and has presented us with several difficult and contentious issues to address. First we must decide on the best way to bring to justice those who carried out that despicable and cowardly act. We must also develop a plan to protect ourselves from the ongoing threat posed by terrorism to the safety of our people and our national security. We must work toward defusing the suspicions and anger being directed at members of some ethnic minorities in our country. Finally, we must come to an understanding of what causes terrorism and how it can be stopped.

    We must be careful at this time that our response is measured and appropriately based on international law. The perpetrators must be brought to justice. Having identified the terrorists and their network, we must actively seek the co-operation of the countries where the terrorists are harboured. If their help is not offered, Canada, acting in concert with our allies, must and can bring great pressure to bear through the use of economic boycotts, military blockades and political and diplomatic isolation to force them to relinquish the terrorists. If military action is ultimately required, it will be military action, but we must make every effort to prevent the creation of new innocent victims.

    North Americans share a common history and language and a similar overall cultural perspective and world view. That is not to say we are the same as our American friends; rather, we share similar interests and have the same concerns for our national security and the safety of our people. The tragedy that took place could have happened here.

    I would like to propose that we in North America look at enacting an agreement similar to the Schengen agreement of the European Union, an agreement regarding our external borders, those borders exposed outwardly to other countries of the world. A system of this type would allow for the continued free and open border with the United States and would expand on areas of co-operation that already exist between our countries. It would enhance our national security.

    Further, if we fail to clearly understand why this tragic and horrible event took place, we in the free world will be engaged in a long and bitter struggle that will involve the loss of many more innocent lives. We have entered a new reality, one that Marshall McLuhan defined when he spoke of us living in a global village, a place where the media allow all people to become instantly aware of events as they occur anywhere in the world. The information thus transmitted allows everyone to see the impact these events have on their lives.

    In order to understand the origins of terrorism, we must understand this reality. Even the poorest have access to television and can look through this window on the world and see how they are faring in the global village. They cannot help but realize their disadvantaged economic position, the discrepancy between their poverty and our affluence.

    Through the media, the people in the Third World are aware of how environmental pollution and global warming does and will increasingly have a negative impact on their lives. Those living under undemocratic regimes see how advances in military technology and the other means for exerting social and political control that are at the disposal of their governments leave them less able to hope for a chance for freedom and to have any power in effecting positive changes in their lives.

    Worse, the west is perceived as a supporter of the regimes that oppress them.

    To eliminate terrorism, we must ultimately address the need to change the conditions that breed terrorists. That is a long term project and will involve significant changes in how the west is viewed by others in the global village, to what extent we are willing to share our affluence and how involved we will become in helping create and secure democracy in other countries.

    Canada, like the United States, is a free and open society, made up of people from all parts of the world. Our tolerance and inclusiveness is being tested. We have many fellow Canadians who are Muslims, Christians and Jews who are from the Middle East or are of that ancestry and other Canadians who look like they might have come from there.

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    It is important to remember that Judaism, Christianity, Islam and all other religions abhor the terrorism that has taken place. The act was carried out by a small group of fanatic extremists. We must fight any expression of xenophobia by reaching out to our fellow Canadians and speaking out against hate and intolerance.

    Ten years ago during the gulf war members of Canada's ethnic communities came together to discuss how they could work together to promote tolerance and inclusiveness. Today more than ever this kind of action needs to be taken across our land. We must ensure ethnic minorities in our communities are not subject to acts of intolerance.

    The terrible events of September 11 have offered us an opportunity to show the world we have learned our lessons and will not repeat our errors from the dark periods in our history when acts of exclusion, expulsion and discrimination marked our reaction to people who were different. The Prime Minister was right when he said that terrorists win when they export their hatred.

    The events surrounding the evil acts of September 11 showed the worst and best of humanity. The worst was the unfolding of the tragic events and the slaughter of thousands of innocent people. The best is the unprecedented coalition that is forming between NATO and the United Nations to combat terrorism and bring to justice the perpetrators of these horrendous acts.

    The best is the outpouring of support from people the world over who have donated blood, financial assistance and moral support. The best is the thousands of volunteers working around the clock to assist in the cleanup and search for victims. The best is the 100 police officers and 15 emergency workers who gave their lives in the line of duty. The best is the 300 firefighters who gave their lives rushing up the stairs of the towering infernos to assist people.

    To put these numbers in a local perspective, the 300 firefighters who died represents the total number of firefighters in my community of Kitchener--Waterloo.

    The horror and pain of this tragic event must not be repeated. The Prime Minister stated in the House:

Our actions will be ruled by resolve but not by fear. If laws need to be changed they will be. If security has to be increased to protect Canadians it will be. We will remain vigilant--

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    Mr. Rob Merrifield (Yellowhead, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, this is the first time I have had the opportunity to offer condolences on behalf of the people of my constituency of Yellowhead to the families in Canada and around the globe who have felt the loss of the September 11 tragedy in the United States.

    In one day the tragedy brought the entire world closer together. On a typical day we come to this place to conduct the business of the nation and represent the views of our constituents. We are often divided in our vision of the country we love. I admit that our actions as members of parliament are sometimes less than parliamentary.

    However in the big picture this place symbolizes all that is good and right in the democratic Canada we love and try to protect. By standing in this place each and every one of us is taking the first step in the stand against terrorists who look to cast fear and chaos into democratic society.

    The terrorist acts in the United States have been forever etched in our minds and will be the lens through which we look at our duties and live our lives.

    Our young nation was built on the sweat and ideas of people who came from all across the globe for a better life, people who wished for democracy, freedom and peace. The horrifying acts of September 11 were committed outside our borders but their violence against the symbols of democracy and freedom was an attack on all western democracies.

    The deplorable actions of faceless fanatics have challenged the fundamental principles of free and democratic nations around the world. On September 11 a cancerous faction of evil attempted to tear down the ideas we have come to believe in as Canadians. However the terrorists have underestimated the strength of our beliefs and our resolve to bring them to justice.

    I support the sentiments of the NDP motion. There is no question that we must condemn the September 11 attacks on the United States. We should look to international law at this time. We must also acknowledge that the United Nations has provisions for collective and individual security.

    The second point of the NDP motion speaks to the general attitude of the Liberal government. We should not need to debate whether the government will table its action plan within 90 days. The Prime Minister needs to return power to the people of Canada by making parliament relevant again. We want to be part of the solution. Canadians should not have to listen to Larry King Live or pay $600 a plate at a Liberal fundraiser to hear the government's action plan.

    I have received countless calls and e-mails from constituents looking for action from the government. We have seen nothing but delays and assertions that the U.S. idea of security and immigration goes against our sovereignty. I am not sure where that comes from.

    The reality is that we share the world's longest undefended border with an economic giant. Canada needs to open its border with the United States. We need to open the border for the sake of our economy. That is what is potentially at risk.

    Sharing common immigration and security philosophies with the United States would not go against our sovereignty. It would reaffirm our sovereignty and power by showing the world we are a trusted and influential friend of the United States.

    The NDP motion raises a third point to which I will speak. Intolerance and racism toward any Canadian is unacceptable. We should have a zero tolerance policy against any such action.

    We must not take an alarmist attitude in our response to terrorism. There is not a rising tide of racism in Canada. Canada is a tolerant society. Canadians have become closer to one another. They have a sense of solidarity with and tolerance for all who seek to build a better Canada. Isolated incidents do not warrant panic but are a reminder that we need continued vigilance against intolerance.

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    The terrorists attacks have given rise to the bigger issue of holes in our laws and our defences. They are obvious to anyone who lives in Canada or south of the border. The sense of security we have been lulled into over the past 50 years has been shattered. We have had the luxury of living peaceful lives on Canadian soil far removed from the wars and conflicts that have become a daily occurrence in many places around the world.

    Canadians have a long history of defending democracy and freedom around the globe. Our fathers and forefathers hoped their sacrifices would be the last. Unfortunately the tragic events of September 11 have shown that there is a new evil out there. It is not a single enemy but one that lurks in the shadows and is too cowardly to show its face.

    The terrorists hiding throughout the world have gone against the civilized world's rules of war and deliberately attacked innocent civilians. The attack on September 11 has forever changed the meaning of war. It was not an attack to win treasure or land. It was an attack against the ideas that have made us strong.

    In this war there will not be a battle line drawn in the sand. There will be no decisive battle to force the enemy into submission. The rules of war have changed but the sacrifices of war have not.

    As in previous generations the call to arms has been issued and we must answer. Our sense of security in living next to the most powerful nation in the world has ended. The reality is that we are vulnerable. Terrorists know no borders.

    I am not one to make sense of the events, but I have a responsibility to ensure that the government is prepared to protect the interests of Canadians. In times of crisis Canadians look to their leaders. They look to their words for reassurance and to their actions for confidence. Canadians have received neither from the Liberal government.

    We must ask why we have waited for evil to strike North America before acting. Closing its eyes and hoping problems will go away is an alarming trend of the Liberal government. Perhaps it is a defining characteristic of the Prime Minister's reign.

    Whether with respect to stronger laws to root out terrorism or legislation to ban human cloning which we have been waiting for since 1993, why does the government wait until the genie is half out of the bottle before it is prepared to act on behalf of Canadians?

    We have known for years that terrorists have seen Canada as a safe haven to carry out fundraising and planning for their organizations. Canadians are no longer willing to support such activity on our soil. It is time we as the people's representatives took the initiative in defending democracy.

    I encourage the government to use all reasonable measures to protect our citizens. Let us strengthen our borders and stop evil before it lands on our soil. Let us find the strength in our justice system to root out the evil we know is there. Let us build the nation's forces and intellectual organizations to defend against this evil. This war will need to be fought with different weapons and tools.

    We know our military forces will never be the strongest. However Canada can do its part with intelligence and technology, a field in which we have led for years. We must shore up our commitment to CSIS and our technological resources to fight this new battle. I call on the government to immediately table anti-terrorist legislation and increase resources to our military and police forces to fight terrorism.

    As a nation and in tandem with our allies we must fight the evil that threatens the values of freedom, safety and democracy on which Canada was founded. The dollar cost will perhaps be significant. However we must spare no reasonable effort to ensure Canada remains a safe place for Canadians and for our neighbours to the south.

    I call on Canadians to continue to support our American friends and neighbours who are feeling the emotional ripple of the attack that was levelled against them. We should think about them because the attack and the victims are not something one gets over quickly. Let us ask God to protect our nation.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was very pleased that my colleague opposite expressed the sentiment that there was no rising tide of intolerance. There are some isolated incidents that we all deplore but I would also make the comment that these incidents arise from ignorance and fear. I would observe that this is precisely what the terrorists wanted.

    The idea of terror is to spread fear and I would suggest to my colleague opposite that the fear that the terrorists wanted to generate was not just the fear of safety in travelling in aircraft, but to generate fear against their fellow Muslims. My own view is that the target of terror is to create intolerance. I would hope that we as a country are one of the strongest to resist this type of terror.

    I wonder if my colleague would like to comment on that.

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    Mr. Rob Merrifield: Mr. Speaker, I do agree that the battle is about fear and terrorists are great at it, and fear is their motive, absolutely. We are in a different war, a war we have never seen before, because of that.

    Most wars are fought over land, property or value or power. This is not about that. This is a different war altogether. It is about causing fear not only to America but to the free world and the world as a whole.

    What we have to face as Canadians is the tightening up our immigration system and our justice system so that we can create a safer Canada. We must start by putting more dollars and more emphasis on our military, on CSIS, our intelligence agency, and on the RCMP. While we are doing that we must also recognize the danger in fighting for our freedom and loosing the things for which we are fighting, such as our fundamental freedom.

    We are fighting a different battle and, as I mentioned in my speech, we must use different weapons.

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    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the act of terrorism is a disregard for the rule of law. That is an important point to make in respect to this particular motion. The motion also makes some assumptions that I would like to address.

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    Mr. Gerald Keddy: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. We do not have quorum in the House and it is the government's job to make sure there are enough members in the House to proceed.

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    The Deputy Speaker: I will ask the clerk to count the members present.

    And the count having been taken:

    The Speaker: We have quorum.

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    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick: Mr. Speaker, I will address a number of important assumptions contained in the motion.

    The first assumption, which is that if we had some international court in place that somehow the terrorists, the 30 cells thought to be in Germany and the people living in caves in Afghanistan, would just surrender to authorities and come to the international court of justice to be dealt with, is a fairly naive assumption. That will not happen. It flies in the face of historical experience.

    I remember a person in about 1939 coming back from a meeting with Adolph Hitler in Munich. He waved a piece of paper around saying “peace in our times”. Thousands and thousands of people applauded him and said that it was a great accomplishment and that he was a man of peace.

    However there was another man, Sir Winston Churchill, who said that appeasement never works with evil and terrorism. These people cannot be negotiated with. They have no respect for the rule of law.

    I think we are dealing with the same sort of factor in this day and age. I have a lot of problems with the assumption built into the motion on that basis.

    The other assumption I think could be very wrong is the assumption that nations under international law do not have the right to deal with criminals who have caused criminal harm in their territories. I think that is an age old international law and a law of the United Nations that nations have the right to take whatever legal action is required to protect themselves from criminal actions by individuals, and this is certainly a criminal action.

    The fourth assumption is that the U.S. would be dealing with the criminals if it apprehended them and that somehow they would not get a fair shake in the American justice system. I have some problems with that assumption as well.

    Anyone who is tried in the U.S. justice system has certain fundamental legal rights. People are presumed innocent until proven guilty. They are entitled to be represented by council. They are entitled to a full disclosure of the case in detail. They also have the right to determine how they are going to be tried, if by jury, to select who is on those juries. They have a concept called due process. A lot of people would say that gives the criminal element an advantage but the U.S. is one of those societies that believes it is better to err on the side of innocence. They also have a very elaborate appeal system.

    The assumption is that maybe other people have a superior system and that an international court would be better. I wish the motion pointed to some real problems in this area. What about the Taliban justice system? Why does the motion not address the horrible justice systems we have in this world, such as the Taliban system where there is not really a rule of law.

    The other implication suggests that the U.S. and its allies will use some very brutal, terroristic methods to deal with this matter. We are heading into week four on this matter and I have not seen a single bomb, rocket or anything fired into Afghanistan. The U.S. is taking its time. It is building a coalition. I believe it has virtually every civilized country in the world on side.

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    The U.S. has consulted with them and are working as a team to deal with this problem. Dealing with the motion that has been presented, the United States is working through the United Nations just as it did during the Bosnian and Serbian problem, and the gulf war.

    There is an implication that the Americans will work outside of our international system. That is not the case. They are working with it.

    Something I am concerned about in this area is the British. The British 1999 social democrat government, led by Prime Minister Blair, passed anti-terrorism legislation that brings them squarely within the 13 resolutions that the United Nations has passed dealing with terrorism. It does not have any problems bringing itself up to snuff with the resolutions that the United Nations passed. It fits squarely within that.

    The only reason I am raising that issue is that two weeks there was a motion in the House to at least study the British anti-terrorist legislation. Members who presented the motion in the House today voted against that motion. Now they want to see action by this government to comply with United Nations resolutions. There was a way to really fast track that if they wanted to do it but they chose not to.

    I want to deal with the subject of intolerance and racism. I think everybody in the House realizes that the best protection against excessive intolerance and racism is an open, democratic society where the rule of law does prevail and people are judged on the basis of their character, their individual attributes and so on, and we do not get into the business of judging people on the basis of arbitrary things, such as race, religion or some other characteristic.

    I think those are the basic values of American and Canadian society. In some ways, and I think this has been said before, the very attack on the twin towers in New York City was an attack on those concepts. Our best protection against racism and intolerance is to have an open society.

    The converse would be the Taliban. That would be a society where people would have legitimate concerns about excesses in terms of racism and discrimination based on religion. They execute people in that country for having a different religion.

    The media in this country have some responsibility in this area. Certain town hall meetings put on by the people's network during this crisis were not conducive to bringing forward better relations between communities. I thought those town hall meetings were an attempt to reinforce some stereotypes that were not so good, the stereotypes that hate-mongers like to seize upon and use to their advantage. I thought some of those town hall meetings were not very good. They were not just toward Arabic and Muslim people, they were also with respect to attitudes toward the Americans.

    A lot of closed societies in this world that do not have a strong history of respecting individual freedoms would be well advised to look at the systems that we have in the United States and Canada as a beginning point for reforming their societies.

    My NDP colleagues make much of getting to the root cause of things. Maybe one of the solutions to root causes of things is the rule of law and respect for individual rights and democracy. Some of these countries have been preoccupied with dictatorial types of government where they have no respect for these sorts of things. They use scapegoats.

  +-(1635)  

    Someone else is always to blame for their problems. Perhaps they should look inward to their own societies to start finding the solutions from within and look at some of the success stories.

    I will put on record that militant Islamic fundamentalism is a dangerous force in our world today. We are not talking about a small, insignificant element. It is a powerful and dangerous force in the modern world and goes much beyond Osama bin Laden. If we do not recognize that in the west, particularly in countries like Canada, we are doing it at our own peril.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): It is my duty pursuant to Standing Order 38 to inform the House that the question to be raised tonight at the time of adjournment is as follows: the hon. member for Cumberland--Colchester, Taxation.

+-

    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I really respect the speech given by the member for Prince Albert, but in his concluding remarks he made one statement that I would like him to elaborate on.

    He deplored fanatical Muslim fundamentalism. Would he not agree that any kind of religious fundamentalism that leads to fanaticism, whether it is Christian, Hindu or any of the other great religions or even minor religions, is something to be deplored and regarded with caution? I am a little nervous that he cited Muslim fundamentalism because Muslims are not the only people who have extremists in their group.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick: Madam Speaker, I agree with my colleague on the point that radical excesses in any type of religion have led to problems in history. I refer to the time of Oliver Cromwell in Great Britain, which was not a proud time in British history.

    The reality is that there is a civil war in Algeria that has been ongoing for seven or eight years which involves radical Islamic movements. The Pakistani government has serious problems with that type of movement. Sudan has a similar type of government in power. Egypt has difficulties with this movement.

    The Iranian revolution was not that long ago. I recall that the U.S. was the great Satan during that particular period of time. Salman Rushdie would have a few things to say about that period of time in that country.

    We should not be under the illusion that we are talking about a few people in a cave in Afghanistan. The Taliban is a product of that type of thinking. These groups are a lot more significant than just a small fraction of the Islamic world. They are becoming something that we have to be aware of.

+-

    Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I listened very carefully to my colleague from across the way and I am a little concerned. He is attempting to portray that certain factions within the Islamic world are very radical.

    Having travelled to Pakistan to meet with Pakistani officials as well as the people there, I have to convey to my hon. colleague that a certain element in Pakistan is radical but the majority of the people are as peace loving as most people in the Islamic world.

    There is a certain element within the Islamic world that sees itself very fundamentally. I would say less than one percentile of the Islamic world, if it is that high, has a hatred toward the western world and specifically toward our neighbours, the United States of America.

    Does the hon. member believe that everyone in Afghanistan and even within the Taliban regime support bin Laden? Does he believe all people in Afghanistan are harbouring bin Laden? Is he of the opinion that we should take revenge on everyone in Afghanistan?

  +-(1640)  

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick: Madam Speaker, I take the opposite point of view. The danger the U.S. and its allies is facing is if they are not really careful about what they do. If there are substantial injuries to the civilian population in the area it could ignite a holy war in the entire region. That would escalate the situation far beyond simply dealing with bin Laden and his terrorist cells.

    This is something bin Laden would like to see happen. He is a devious and formidable opponent. He is certainly in the league of Adolf Hitler, if not even more serious than that. Part of his goal is to create an unstable world. This is a real danger. Most Muslim countries realize where this kind of thinking has taken their countries and societies. They are just as fearful about where this is leading as we are.

*   *   *

+-Business of the House

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Following discussions among the House leaders I believe you would find unanimous consent for the following motion. I move:

That Bill C-267, now in the name of Mme Jennings, stand in the name of Mr. Lincoln;

That Bill C-268, now in the name of Mme Jennings, stand in the name of Mme Thibeault;

That Bill S-10, now in the name of Mme Jennings, stand in the name of Mme Thibeault; and

That Motion No. 382, now in the name of Mr. Owen, stand in the name of Mrs. Kraft-Sloan.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan: Madam Speaker, I rise on a second point of order. Following other discussions among the House leaders I believe you would find, if you were to seek it, unanimous consent for the following motion. I move:

    That, notwithstanding any Standing Order, a question to a spokesperson for the Board of Internal Economy may be taken up during proceedings pursuant to Standing Order 38 and a spokesperson for the Board who is not a Minister or Parliamentary Secretary may give the response during those proceedings.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

*   *   *

+-Supply

-Allotted Day--Terrorism

    The House resumed consideration of the motion and of the amendment.

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.): Madam Speaker, there is a temptation which I will avoid, to get somewhat impatient with some of the statements that are being made, particularly by members of the official opposition. I assume they are expressing concerns on behalf of their constituents and that they are genuine in those concerns.

    I cannot help but think that had the Prime Minister of this great country made the same response as the previous speaker did regarding an all out attack in Afghanistan he would be accused of being soft on terrorism. That is what we have heard. It is frustrating to sit and listen to what amounts to partisanship attacks instead of trying to resolve a problem.

    I give some credit to members of the NDP for putting forward the motion. While it is not votable and while we may not agree with all of it, it raises some very valid points and good suggestions.

    The first part of the motion deals with the fact that there should be some application of international law, perhaps at The Hague as we are currently seeing with former President Milosevic from Serbia. It is perhaps an option that should be considered under the auspices of the United Nations.

    For anyone to suggest that what happened on September 11 was simply and purely an attack on the United States of America is to miss the obvious. It may have even been in the plans to expand the attack base to Canada. There was a rumour on September 11 at 11 o'clock, as we closed our skies, that there was a very strong concern one of the planes that was being diverted to Pearson airport was indeed a hijacked aircraft and could have been used as a missile or as a bomb to cause some problems.

    As I have mentioned before in this place, the Credit Valley Hospital and the Etobicoke General Hospital were on emergency alert as a result of the information that was being funnelled directly down to their administration.

    It had the potential to go well beyond the situation that we so tragically witnessed with the twin towers and at the Pentagon. The plane that wound up crashing into a field was rumoured to be targeted for the White House. There are stories that there were at least two or three other situations. It resulted in the closing of the skies throughout all of North America and, might I add, that included Canada.

    People asked how we reacted. What did we do? We reacted very quickly to close Canadian skies to anyone leaving and to accept all the aircraft throughout North America, as many as 500 planes in the air, between the hours of 9 and 11 in the morning. We accepted them in the various airports across the country and, I might add, at some risk. I could hear the howls, and perhaps justifiably so, if an incident had occurred at any of our airports or in any of our cities as a result of that decision.

    We saw the calamity, the seriousness of the attack that was going on, and we recognized that this was not a time for dithering. This was indeed a time to make a decision to open up our airports and subsequently, as many Canadians did across the land, to open up our homes to the travellers who were on those aircraft to assure their safety and at least a certain modicum of comfort.

    We did act. Is it now reasonable to suggest that we should simply storm the barricades, if we knew where they were? That is what we hear. It is not just in this place. We hear it in the media all the time, that somehow and in some way Canada should be doing something. No one quite knows what it is. No one can quite put a handle on it except that maybe we should be marshalling our troops or maybe we should be gassing up our aircraft and our ground equipment.

  +-(1645)  

    We hear cries for more money for CSIS, more money for immigration, more money for deportees, more money for national defence, more money for the armed forces. All these cries are from the same people in this place who for many years have said to cut money here, to cut money there, to slash and burn. The result has been a substantial reduction in government expenditures in certain areas. Yet we could point to the fact that recognizing the depth of the cuts that took place, our armed forces have received an injection of $3 billion in extra funding over the past couple of budgets.

    Before returning to the NDP motion, Madam Speaker, I am sharing my time.

    Let us assume that President Bush is sharing the evidence the CIA and people around the world have compiled against Osama bin Laden, evidence that has been requested not only in Afghanistan and Pakistan but everywhere, and that evidence is being released and shown in diplomatic courier packages. In Pakistan I understand the briefings are one on one with the American ambassador and that the ambassador will be briefing the president of Pakistan on exactly what that evidence is. That is a reasonable, prudent, sound thing to do.

    President Bush has impressed me on how calm and resolute he has remained throughout this incredible tragedy. It would be quite easy to knee-jerk react. It would be quite easy to simply push a button or pick up a phone and launch an attack as retribution for that horrendous act we all witnessed on the morning of September 11.

    Let us make no mistake that it was extremely difficult for the Americans to tolerate seeing the twin towers of the World Trade Center crushed, seeing the Pentagon itself attacked. For a country as strong, as free and as proud as the United States of America to witness that kind of travesty, it is hard to imagine the level of emotion, the fever pitch that must have been gripping the White House and all the advisers. It is only natural, a human trait, to want to exact revenge, to want to get back at the perpetrators, but President Bush has been methodical. He is attacking the sources of funds. He is working with Great Britain, which has frozen some $88 billion in funds. He is working with Canada where any terrorist funds that are linked to Canadian bank accounts have also been frozen. Those are prudent actions on the part of the president. That is not to say there will not be some form of armed aggression. I would be shocked if we did not see something, perhaps imminently.

    However, to actually expect us to pass a motion which suggests that within 90 days the government set out a report detailing the steps that we are about to take, let us just think about it. Should we send that by Purolator to Afghanistan? Should we let the Taliban know exactly what we are going to do, exactly what we are going to spend, exactly what we are going to commit in terms of manpower and weaponry? It is so naive that it tends to damage the good ideas that precede this motion, such as looking at international law and working with the United Nations.

    This is not about defending the justice system of the United States. This is about a worldwide co-ordinated action against terrorism right around the globe. It is critically important to understand that.

  +-(1650)  

    Looking at the parade of foreign leaders that have come through the White House, it is very clear that President Bush understands the importance of bringing everybody together to fight and to eventually put an end to this scourge called terrorism.

+-

    Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.): Madam Speaker, we live in a country where, as the Prime Minister said, 50% of our population is made up of people who have come here in the last 50 years.

    There are four pillars in our community: the founding fathers, the French and the English; the native Canadians; and the pillar in our community which has blossomed over the last 50 years, the people from ethnic minorities, people of visible minorities. These people right now are reaching out to us and saying they are feeling a bit of heat in the comments made toward them. An individual called me today to say he was sent a racist remark by e-mail. He sent it to me. I read it and I was really saddened and mad that somebody had sent this e-mail to my friend.

    I am going to ask my friend from the other side of Toronto, my colleague from Mississauga, if he can give us a vision of what he thinks Canada is. Can he give us a vision of what his community is telling him?

    In my community, which is one of the most ethnically diverse ridings in Canada, people are telling me that they are here and they are Canadian. They are ready to fight for Canada. They stand united for Canada. It does not matter if they are from Afghanistan, from Pakistan, if they are Christian, Jewish, Hebrew, or Hindu. They are all united in saying that we need to defend Canada and exterminate terrorism.

    Could my good friend from the other side of Toronto express what his constituents are telling him?

  +-(1655)  

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney: Madam Speaker, the first thing my constituents tell me is that we are not from the other side of Toronto. We are from the sixth largest city in the country. However, I appreciate the member's question.

    People may assume that this was a setup, but I can assure everyone that I did not talk to the hon. member about this. I will share with the House a story told to me by my 26 year old son.

    My son had been out for the evening and had occasion to take a taxi cab, being the good Irish lad that he is. He was sitting in the taxi cab on the way home from a party. The fellow that was driving the taxi cab was dark skinned. This was shortly after September 11. They started to talk about the attacks. It turned out that the cab driver was a Muslim. The cab driver complained to my son Chris about some of the abuse that he had been taking as a result of his skin colour and ultimately his religion. My son Chris had a very simple answer which to me is the vision of this country. This 26 year old young man said, “Just tell them to get lost. This country is as much yours as it is mine”.

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I also listened with great interest to what the member for one of the Mississauga ridings said.

    This morning a member asked how we can make good from calamity, which I think is part of the exercise we are dealing with. I think there have already been some gains with respect to what was just discussed.

    There is an awareness of what Canada is, an awareness of diversity. There is also an awareness that racism, even in good times, is just below the surface and is something we should be aware of here in the House of Commons. I have been to a number of church services. This has been well expressed. I have been to some schools in my riding. There too it is being discussed. I have noticed in the media it is being discussed.

    My colleague was at Queen's Park before he was a member here. Does he have any thoughts on how we can take this heightened awareness of the awful side of racism, the heightened awareness of the strength of diversity and entrench it in future years?

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney: Madam Speaker, that is a tall order.

    First we have to recognize that while Canada is not a racist society, and I certainly would not want to suggest that, the spectre of the shadow of the dark side does exist in the country. At times it will come out in very unfortunate incidents but those incidents are in the minority.

    I would say to my friend, who also was at Queen's Park with me for a time, that if there is anywhere that we must continue to support the nation by welcoming people from all over the world openly, freely and democratically, it is in the junior levels of our education system. We can go into any school in my riding in Mississauga and it is a united nations of faces that sits before us. These young people go home at night and talk to their moms and dads about the issues of the world.

    I encourage all members to take the opportunity to go into their schools and talk to these young children. That is where we can begin to ensure for generations to come that the vision of tolerance, caring and inclusion of people from all over the world will continue to be what Canada is about.

+-

    Mr. Paul Bonwick (Simcoe—Grey, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. member from the sixth largest city in Canada for splitting his time with me and for his very succinct and accurate commentary on recent events and how they have affected Canadians. Many of his comments I could not agree with more. I am sure I will be repeating some of them.

    I rise today to speak to the NDP motion as well as to provide some of my own thoughts and those from my riding about the terribly horrific act which happened on September 11. I start by suggesting that it is a sad day not just for the House, the country and the United States, but all around the world. Parliaments, Canadians, citizens and countries all around the world are spending so much time, energy and money contending with such an incredible act of terrorism, cowardice and murder.

    I would like to touch on three specific issues this afternoon that are linked directly to the incredible crime against humanity which was perpetrated on September 11. The first issue I would contend with is the shock and utter disbelief. As has been said in the media and around the globe, it was one of those moments that everyone for their lifetimes will remember where they were on September 11. It had that kind of impact on the global community.

    I was on my way back to my riding from Ottawa when the events took place. I got back into my riding and the phone started ringing immediately. Constituents were feeling a sense of helplessness. Even more so there was a sense of rage not only that something like this could take place on North American soil but that the evildoers, the cowards and murderers, would take it upon themselves to kill thousands upon thousands of civilians, men, women and children, with absolute disregard for the quality of human life. We cannot lose sight of the fact that dozens of countries were represented in the twin towers when that unfortunate situation took place. Our hearts and souls pour out to them.

    If there was a silver lining in the immediate aftermath, it was the overwhelming response we received from my riding. Many of the first questions were people asking what they could do to help. I am very proud to represent the riding of Simcoe--Grey. I thank the residents of Simcoe--Grey who have contributed emotional support. They have contributed financially and with any other means possible to support not just our neighbours, not just our friends, but our family. So many people in the House and across the country have relatives in the United States. My aunt, cousins and nieces live there. We were all touched in a very personal way by those terrible events.

    When dealing with a crime of such horrific magnitude, one cannot help but feel an overwhelming sense of helplessness immediately after the fact and an incredible sense of anger and loss. However we cannot allow those first emotions to guide us in the weeks and months to come.

    Immediately after that horrific event, Canadians, our government and our Prime Minister were there for the United States. We accommodated tens of thousands of travellers. We not only opened our airports, we opened our homes and hearts. I could not have been more proud when the Prime Minister offered his full support to the president and Americans to give them whatever they needed.

    Some Canadians were killed in the building. Just last week we had the sad task of dealing with the death of one of our very own. A gentleman from my riding was in one of the towers when the plane crashed. Sadly he left behind a wife and family. This event has reached into every corner of the country, every corner of the continent, and for that matter around the world.

  +-(1700)  

    The Prime Minister spoke out immediately and in the strongest possible terms against these acts of cowardice and murder. He used the word terrorism. He summed it up best in the House a few days ago when he stated that the only way these terrorists and murderers could accomplish their end deed and achieve their goal was if they transferred the hate in their hearts into ours.

    We can never allow that to happen. Members in the House, members of the other place and Canadians across the country will not allow that hate to be transferred into their hearts.

    I had the privilege last Thursday evening of attending an event in Toronto organized by the Pakistani community. At the event my good colleague from Scarborough--Agincourt and I witnessed a large outpouring of emotion and disbelief. We had the privilege of not only addressing Toronto's Pakistani community but hearing its members articulate their absolute disbelief, sense of horror and, most important, lack of acceptance that these kinds of atrocities could take place in the world.

    Members of the Muslim community were there. One statement that has stuck in my mind was made by Ms. Raheel Raza, a writer for the Toronto Star. It touched me because I know from newspaper, radio and TV coverage that some of the perpetrators of this evil, these malicious people whom it is difficult to describe in words, use the term holy war. The woman came to the microphone, announced her pride at being a Muslim and spoke about the Koran and Islam. One of the things she stated was that the term holy war was a direct contradiction. It is an oxymoron.

    The Koran and the Muslim faith are totally opposed to murder. The sanctity of human life regardless of religion, skin colour or where one chooses to live in the world is the foremost thing they take into consideration. We cannot allow evil doers, regardless of skin colour, to twist religion and suggest this is a so-called holy war. To do so would justify the act. They are nothing more than callous murderers and they must be dealt with and brought to justice.

    The coming weeks, months and sadly years will require a collective effort from countries around the globe. One country that has risen to the challenge is Pakistan. I tip my hat to the Pakistani leader, General Pervez Musharraf, for his full support in the fight against terrorism. His country and countries throughout the region have been experiencing similar acts of terrorism for decades.

    Over the past days I have had reason to be concerned because the House does not seem to be coming together in the way that it should. I have felt utter disbelief listening to some of the statements that have been made.

    I had the privilege yesterday of meeting with a visiting British opposition parliamentarian and we had a discussion about this. Yes, there are opposition parties in the U.K. that feel different approaches could be made. However these things will be worked out in time. One of the things he reinforced was that there is a need for all of us to come together.

    We have heard some very rational comments on the issue by the Bloc Quebecois and the NDP. However some of the comments of the official opposition and the Conservative Party have been downright outlandish.

    I sat here a few nights ago and listened to one member suggest he had the answer. He wanted to bring back capital punishment. I sat here and wondered if I should run over and check for a pulse. Capital punishment is not the answer.

  +-(1705)  

    My heart and prayers are with our American friends south of the border. My heart and prayers are with the family in my riding that has lost a father. I know my constituents will offer their full and unequivocal support to the government to bring the perpetrators of terrorism to justice, and that is exactly what the government will do.

  +-(1710)  

+-

    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Madam Speaker, the member mentioned that we will all remember where we were when the event happened. I had landed in Halifax a couple of hours before the incident and was unaware of what had happened. I found out when I was on the phone checking in with my staff.

    I was at a camp ground in Baddeck, Nova Scotia, and the person on the phone next to me was an American tourist. The individual was going through an address book to look up the phone number of a son or daughter who worked in the World Trade Center. Unfortunately I was not able to talk to that tourist who left before I got off the phone.

    There is goodwill in this place at this time between all opposition parties and the government to work in a co-ordinated way to address the horrible event. We will co-operate not only to help our American friends but to fix systems that need to be fixed within our own country such as internal and border security, RCMP funding and other issues.

    Actions speak louder than words. Would my hon. colleague ask his cabinet colleagues and the Prime Minister if they would be willing to take leaders of the opposition into the privy council during this time to explain to them in a non-partisan way what is going on and thereby gather support from the opposition parties?

+-

    Mr. Paul Bonwick: Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his comment. Knowing him personally I want to dispel any notion that I have something contrary to say about him. I know his heart and prayers are with all the victims and their family members.

    What I am talking about more specifically is the partisan approach and knee-jerk reaction that have taken place in the House. I listened to the leader of the official opposition talk a few days ago about increasing funding to CSIS. The solicitor general stood and said the director of CSIS had publicly said the agency had enough money to fulfill its mandate.

    The leader of the official opposition got back on his feet and asked if funding would be increased to CSIS. He was looking for anything he could hang on to. He said the government should send planes. Where should it send them?

    I will be bringing a message to my cabinet colleagues, my caucus colleagues and the Prime Minister that as much information that can be disclosed within the House should be disclosed. However it should not be done at the cost of compromising our security and the way we bring the perpetrators of this evil to justice. We cannot compromise that.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, paragraph (c) of the NDP motion seems to imply that the criminal code is deficient and our human rights commissions are not up to the task of dealing with the rising tide of intolerance and racism.

    Could the hon. member for Simcoe--Grey perhaps enlighten us on that? Is the criminal code deficient in dealing with acts of racism, intolerance, hate and so on? My understanding is that there are ample provisions in the criminal code to deal with this sort of thing. Maybe he could comment on that.

+-

    Mr. Paul Bonwick: Madam Speaker, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs could not have been more clear. They will deal with these issues in a most expeditious way.

    The world changed on September 11. What was acceptable and what worked prior to then may need to be changed now. The Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs have made a commitment to work with the U.S. and the coalition around the world to make sure these changes are made in the most timely fashion possible.

    I hope the opposition will join us in making sure these bills get through the House in the most expeditious way possible. Canadians will feel a lot more comfortable if they know the House is united in the fight against terrorism.

  +-(1715)  

+-

    Hon. Lorne Nystrom (Regina—Qu'Appelle, NDP): Madam Speaker, I will pick up on a comment the member for Dewdney--Alouette made a minute ago. He suggested the leaders of the opposition parties should be put in the privy council so they could be briefed on some of the sensitivities of the situation. This was done during the gulf war by Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. He appointed then NDP leader Audrey McLaughlin to the privy council, a move which was extremely useful at the time.

    I will say a few words about the motion before the House today. Like everyone else I too condemn the violence that took place on September 11. It was a tremendous crime against humanity and a tragedy that struck families around the world. Let us not forget that this was the World Trade Center and the victims were not only Americans. People from nearly 60 countries around the world were killed in the tragic event, including a number of Canadians.

    This tremendous international tragedy was perpetrated by a small gang of terrorists who struck at the heart of the civilized world. They targeted ordinary people who were going to work, travelling on business or flying as stewardesses or passengers on the planes that crashed into the two towers in New York City, into the Pentagon and into the field in Pennsylvania.

    We condemn what happened in the most forceful way possible. It is important that Canada do whatever it can in the campaign against terrorism around the world. We should play our role and make our contribution in a concerted way. It should be done in a multilateral sense, preferably through the United Nations and in accordance with the principles of international law.

    That is extremely important. The response should be multilateral and in accordance with international law. It should not be undertaken by one or two countries taking military action by themselves. That could make the situation worse and lead to more violence.

    I do not think there would be indiscriminate bombing but it is possible. It has happened many times before. If that happened it would play into the hands of the terrorists and give them another group of people from which to recruit for future terrorist acts. That is a concern I have.

    Canada has a great reputation which goes back many years. Lester Pearson and many other Canadians have contributed to Canada's positive role as a middle power which uses diplomacy and a multilateral approach to solve serious problems around the world. That is what we should be doing. We should be leading the way in trying to settle the issue through an international tribunal.

    We heard this morning from the British prime minister and NATO about all the evidence concerning bin Laden. It would be useful if the evidence were turned over to an international tribunal. There would be no need for the tribunal to operate in public. It could hold a private hearing to examine the evidence. If the evidence convinced the tribunal it would give the world community legitimacy to go in and do what it must to capture bin Laden, his lieutenants and anyone else involved in the terrorist ring. That is how the world community should proceed.

    We should do this in a proper way. Our country and our Prime Minister could use Canada's credibility to advocate a multilateral approach through the United Nations. This would be good for humanity and all concerned.

    We should also look at the causes of terrorism. Some people will resort to terrorism no matter what the world community does because they have extreme, fundamentalistic or racist views that we could not possibly massage. Others who get involved in these movements do so because they have lost hope, are on the brink of starvation or live in abject poverty in refugee camps.

  +-(1720)  

    That is one role we can play again, trying to move toward the eradication of world poverty because extreme poverty breeds the conditions where people can be recruited for different terrorist organizations and terrorist groups.

    It struck me that when the September 11 tragedy occurred, which was probably the worst terrorist act over that short period time in the history of the world, some 35,615 children died of starvation in the world that day according to the United Nations food and agriculture organization.

    Yet we did not hear anything about this in the news media. We did not have any moments of silence for all of those kids who died of starvation. There were no great speeches made anywhere around the world. It was one of those things that happens every day.

    When that kind of poverty and that kind of suffering are going on it creates the conditions where terrorist groups can recruit people to be part of their organizations to strike out at what they think is an evil and unjust world.

    Once again Canada should be playing the leading role as a middle size country in trying to promote a real campaign of war against poverty in the world. In the months that lie ahead we should try to pick up the leadership of initiating a modern day Marshall plan to attack poverty in places like Africa, Afghanistan and many other poor countries around the world.

    The Marshall plan helped rebuild Europe after the second world war. It led to a peaceful Europe and to the development of the Europe we see today in terms of getting people jobs, opportunities, education and health care systems. Our country should lead the way toward the same kind of initiative in the years that lie ahead.

    There is lots of money in the world for that kind of initiative. I recall a motion that parliament endorsed two years ago. It was a motion that I presented to the House on what is called the Tobin tax, which is a small tax on speculation in currency around the world. Every day around a trillion dollars or more of currency is speculated on in the world.

    The idea behind the Tobin tax by Professor Tobin in the United States was to place a very small tax of 0.1% to 0.5% on the speculation of currency for two purposes: first, to try to slow down the currency which distorts the economies of many countries and, second, to create a developable fund of billions of dollars a year.

    The funds would then be used to tackle poverty and hunger and clean up the environment and all other conditions of inequality that we see in the world today.

    After what happened on September 11 there may be an opening in the world to look at spending more of our collective resources on a modern day Marshall plan for the world's poorest countries in terms of relieving their debt, providing economic aid, and assistance in terms of education, health, agriculture and so on.

    That is the way we have to go. That is the kind of vision our country should be promoting in the international community right around the globe. Those are a couple of extremely important points.

    We must also be concerned about security at home. The finance committee is meeting at this hour. Later this week the committee will be hearing from the Department of National Defence, the Minister of National Defence, the RCMP, CSIS, the customs people and other organizations about what might be needed to improve security at home and what role we would play in terms of the campaign against terrorism.

    We have to look at security at airports. A number of years ago there was a mad dash to privatize everything including Air Canada and security at the airports. Now all of a sudden when we have a crisis we have more people talking about the role of government being relevant once again and the role of public institutions being more relevant. We should make sure that we have a public institution like the federal government looking after security at airports.

    If a lot more money is to be put into Air Canada, which may be necessary, it should be made a crown corporation. We can take out some equity in Air Canada or take a majority share in Air Canada.

  +-(1725)  

    This is a position being looked at by a couple of cabinet ministers across the way. If public money is to be used then let us make sure the public has the equity and shares in the company so that it has an eye on the inside and has some input into the direction in which this major airline would go. Those are some of the things that we will have to do as a country to come to terms with the new reality and the new world out there.

    Finally we have to look at the economy. We were going into a real slowdown in the economy before September 11. The growth rates in Canada and in the United States were dropping before September 11. After September 11 the economy has slowed down a lot quicker. We will be into a recession, if we are not already into one, within the next few weeks.

    It is important that we continue the downward push in interest rates at this time to try to stimulate demand. We should make sure we have a stimulus budget. The federal government should put more money into programs for people instead of putting more money into huge tax cuts which benefit wealthier people and large corporations for the most part. We have a human deficit. We have the largest household debt in the history of Canada; 98% of households are in debt.

    We should be spending more money in terms of infrastructure programs, health care, the education system, housing and agriculture. If we do that we will be stimulating the economy and creating more jobs, thus creating more revenue for the federal government at the same time. That is the direction in which we have to go.

    Recessions are caused by the lack of demand. When we have a situation like the one that happened on September 11 people are scared and they stop spending. They put off going on a holiday, renovating a house or purchasing a car.

    If the federal government does not take the opportunity to make sure it invests in programs for people to stimulate the economy and create more demand, it is making a very large mistake.

    I hope the Minister of Finance will bring in a budget some time in the next month or two and make a commitment that the role of the government will be more important.

    The federal government's role now is smaller in terms of the percentage of the GDP than it has been at any time since the second world war. There has been a mad dash to privatize, deregulate and turn things over to the large business community. The move has been to shrink the government. This started to go fast forward with the 1995 budget of the Minister of Finance.

    What we have across the way now is probably the most conservative government the country has ever seen. It is certainly the most conservative Liberal government in the history of the country compared to Pierre Trudeau's, Lester Pearson's and other Liberal governments in the past that saw a vision of a more mixed society. That is gone now with this mad dash to go to the political right. We have a chance to correct that move.

    I was in Peterborough on Friday. I know the member for Peterborough is concerned about the right wing conservative drift of the Minister of Finance and the Prime Minister. He cannot speak publicly about that because of our parliamentary system, but I know he is concerned about the conservative drift within the Liberal Party across the way.

    This is the time to speak up. This is a time for my hon. friend to have the courage to speak out in the House of Commons for a more important role for the federal government and for public institutions in Canada.

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I do appreciate the endorsement by my colleague. I was enjoying what he said until the very last minute. It is true that he and I share some views but not very many. Particularly we do not share views on proportional representation.

    Earlier in the day I asked one of my colleagues a question arising from a speech of one of his NDP colleagues this morning. In the vein in which he ended his speech, how could we take advantage of the heightened interest in the fact that Canada is a very multicultural, diverse and strong society and create a heightened awareness that racism is just below the surface? What can we do to make sure that in the coming years we remain conscious of the strength of diversity and the dangers of racism?

  +-(1730)  

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): Unfortunately there is no time left for an answer. It being 5.30 p.m., it is my duty to inform the House that proceedings on the motion have expired.

[Government Orders]

*   *   *

[English]

+-International Boundary Waters Treaty Act

     The House resumed from September 27 consideration of the motion that Bill C-6, an act to amend the International Boundary Waters Treaty Act, be read the third time and passed.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion at third reading stage of Bill C-6.

    Call in the members.

  +-(1800)  

[Translation]

    (The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+

(Division No. 144)

YEAS

Members

Abbott
Ablonczy
Adams
Alcock
Allard
Anderson (Cypress Hills--Grasslands)
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bellemare
Bennett
Benoit
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Bonwick
Borotsik
Boudria
Breitkreuz
Brison
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Burton
Byrne
Caccia
Cadman
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Carroll
Casey
Casson
Castonguay
Catterall
Cauchon
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chatters
Clark
Coderre
Collenette
Comuzzi
Copps
Cullen
Cummins
Cuzner
Day
DeVillers
Dhaliwal
Dion
Doyle
Dromisky
Drouin
Duhamel
Duncan
Duplain
Easter
Eggleton
Elley
Epp
Eyking
Farrah
Finlay
Fitzpatrick
Fontana
Forseth
Fry
Gagliano
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goldring
Goodale
Gouk
Graham
Grewal
Grey (Edmonton North)
Grose
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Hearn
Herron
Hill (Macleod)
Hill (Prince George--Peace River)
Hilstrom
Hinton
Hubbard
Ianno
Jackson
Jaffer
Jennings
Jordan
Karetak-Lindell
Karygiannis
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Knutson
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
Lastewka
Lavigne
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
Lunn (Saanich--Gulf Islands)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Maloney
Manley
Marcil
Marleau
Matthews
Mayfield
McCallum
McCormick
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McNally
McTeague
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Moore
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Obhrai
Owen
Pagtakhan
Pallister
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Penson
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Pettigrew
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Rajotte
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Reynolds
Richardson
Ritz
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Schmidt
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Speller
Spencer
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Steckle
Stewart
Strahl
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest)
Tirabassi
Tobin
Toews
Tonks
Torsney
Ur
Valeri
Vanclief
Vellacott
Volpe
Wappel
Wayne
Whelan
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
White (North Vancouver)
Wilfert
Williams
Wood
Yelich

Total: --227

NAYS

Members

Anders
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bellehumeur
Bergeron
Bigras
Bourgeois
Brien
Cardin
Comartin
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Desjarlais
Desrochers
Dubé
Duceppe
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Guay
Guimond
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lebel
Loubier
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Ménard
Nystrom
Paquette
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Proctor
Robinson
Rocheleau
Roy
St-Hilaire
Stoffer
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)

Total: --41

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bradshaw
Cotler
Folco
Fournier
Gray (Windsor West)
MacAulay
Marceau
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Plamondon
Sauvageau
Thibault (West Nova)
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Venne

Total: --14

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I declare the motion carried.

    (Bill read the third time and passed)

[English]

+-Nuclear Fuel Waste Act

    The House resumed from September 27 consideration of the motion that Bill C-27, an act respecting the long term management of nuclear fuel waste, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion at second reading stage of Bill C-27. The question is on the motion.

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I think you would find consent for members who voted on the motion immediately previous to be recorded as voting on the motion now before the House, with Liberal members voting yes.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Is there unanimous consent?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

+-

    Mr. Garry Breitkreuz: Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Alliance members will vote yes to the motion.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Pierre Brien: Mr. Speaker, members of the Bloc Quebecois will be voting in favour of the motion.

+-

    Mr. Yvon Godin: Mr. Speaker, NDP members present will be voting in favour of the motion.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill: Mr. Speaker, members of the PC/DR coalition present this evening will be voting in favour of the motion.

    (The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 145)

YEAS

Members

Abbott
Ablonczy
Adams
Alcock
Allard
Anders
Anderson (Cypress Hills--Grasslands)
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bellehumeur
Bellemare
Bennett
Benoit
Bergeron
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Bigras
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Bonwick
Borotsik
Boudria
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Brison
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Burton
Byrne
Caccia
Cadman
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Cardin
Carignan
Carroll
Casey
Casson
Castonguay
Catterall
Cauchon
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chatters
Clark
Coderre
Collenette
Comartin
Comuzzi
Copps
Crête
Cullen
Cummins
Cuzner
Dalphond-Guiral
Day
Desjarlais
Desrochers
DeVillers
Dhaliwal
Dion
Doyle
Dromisky
Drouin
Dubé
Duceppe
Duhamel
Duncan
Duplain
Easter
Eggleton
Elley
Epp
Eyking
Farrah
Finlay
Fitzpatrick
Fontana
Forseth
Fry
Gagliano
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallaway
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godfrey
Godin
Goldring
Goodale
Gouk
Graham
Grewal
Grey (Edmonton North)
Grose
Guarnieri
Guay
Guimond
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Hearn
Herron
Hill (Macleod)
Hill (Prince George--Peace River)
Hilstrom
Hinton
Hubbard
Ianno
Jackson
Jaffer
Jennings
Jordan
Karetak-Lindell
Karygiannis
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Knutson
Kraft Sloan
Laframboise
Laliberte
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lastewka
Lavigne
Lebel
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
Loubier
Lunn (Saanich--Gulf Islands)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Maloney
Manley
Marcil
Marleau
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
Matthews
Mayfield
McCallum
McCormick
McDonough
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McNally
McTeague
Ménard
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Moore
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
Nystrom
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Obhrai
Owen
Pagtakhan
Pallister
Paquette
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Penson
Peric
Perron
Peschisolido
Peterson
Pettigrew
Phinney
Picard (Drummond)
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proctor
Proulx
Provenzano
Rajotte
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Reynolds
Richardson
Ritz
Robillard
Robinson
Rocheleau
Rock
Roy
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Schmidt
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Speller
Spencer
St-Hilaire
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Steckle
Stewart
Stoffer
Strahl
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest)
Tirabassi
Tobin
Toews
Tonks
Torsney
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur
Valeri
Vanclief
Vellacott
Volpe
Wappel
Wayne
Whelan
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
White (North Vancouver)
Wilfert
Williams
Wood
Yelich

Total: --268

NAYS

Nil

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bradshaw
Cotler
Folco
Fournier
Gray (Windsor West)
MacAulay
Marceau
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Plamondon
Sauvageau
Thibault (West Nova)
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Venne

Total: --14

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I declare the motion carried. Accordingly the bill stands referred to the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs, Northern Development and Natural Resources.

    (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

[Translation]

+-Canada—Costa Rica Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act

    The House resumed from October 1 consideration of the motion that Bill C-32, an act to implement the Free Trade Agreement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Republic of Costa Rica, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division at second reading stage of Bill C-32.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I think you would find consent that members who voted on the motion immediately previous be recorded as voting on this motion, with Liberal members voting yes.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Is there unanimous consent?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

+-

    Mr. Garry Breitkreuz: Mr. Speaker, Alliance members present will vote nay to this motion, except for those who may rise and indicate otherwise.

  +-(1805)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Pierre Brien: Mr. Speaker, the members of the Bloc Quebecois will support this motion.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Yvon Godin: Mr. Speaker, members of the NDP are voting no to this motion.

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill: Mr. Speaker, members of the PC/DR coalition present this evening are voting in favour of this motion.

+-

    Mr. Charlie Penson: Mr. Speaker, I would like to have my vote recorded in favour of this motion.

+-

    Mr. James Moore: Mr. Speaker, I would like to be recorded as having voted yes to this motion.

+-

    Mr. Scott Reid: Mr. Speaker, I am voting in favour of the bill.

+-

    Mr. David Anderson: Mr. Speaker, I would like to be recorded as voting in favour of this motion.

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton: Mr. Speaker, I vote in favour.

+-

    Mr. Deepak Obhrai: Mr. Speaker, I want to be recorded as voting yea to this motion.

+-

    Mr. Rahim Jaffer: Mr. Speaker, I would like to be recorded as voting yea to this motion.

+-

    Mr. James Rajotte: Mr. Speaker, I would like to be recorded as voting yea to this motion.

+-

    Mr. Ted White: Mr. Speaker, I would like to be recorded as voting yea to this motion.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick: Mr. Speaker, I will be voting yea to this motion.

+-

    Mr. Rob Anders: Mr. Speaker, I would like to be recorded as voting in favour of free trade.

*   *   *

    (The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 146)

YEAS

Members

Adams
Alcock
Allard
Anders
Anderson (Cypress Hills--Grasslands)
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bellehumeur
Bellemare
Bennett
Bergeron
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Bigras
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Bonwick
Borotsik
Boudria
Bourgeois
Brien
Brison
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Cardin
Carignan
Carroll
Casey
Castonguay
Catterall
Cauchon
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Clark
Coderre
Collenette
Comuzzi
Copps
Crête
Cullen
Cuzner
Dalphond-Guiral
Desrochers
DeVillers
Dhaliwal
Dion
Doyle
Dromisky
Drouin
Dubé
Duceppe
Duhamel
Duplain
Easter
Eggleton
Eyking
Farrah
Finlay
Fitzpatrick
Fontana
Fry
Gagliano
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallaway
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godfrey
Goodale
Graham
Grey (Edmonton North)
Grose
Guarnieri
Guay
Guimond
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Hearn
Herron
Hill (Prince George--Peace River)
Hinton
Hubbard
Ianno
Jackson
Jaffer
Jennings
Jordan
Karetak-Lindell
Karygiannis
Keddy (South Shore)
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Knutson
Kraft Sloan
Laframboise
Laliberte
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lastewka
Lavigne
Lebel
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
Loubier
Lunn (Saanich--Gulf Islands)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Maloney
Manley
Marcil
Marleau
Matthews
McCallum
McCormick
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McNally
McTeague
Ménard
Meredith
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Moore
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Obhrai
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paquette
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Penson
Peric
Perron
Peterson
Pettigrew
Phinney
Picard (Drummond)
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Rajotte
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Richardson
Robillard
Rocheleau
Rock
Roy
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Hilaire
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Steckle
Stewart
Strahl
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest)
Tirabassi
Tobin
Tonks
Torsney
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wappel
Wayne
Whelan
White (North Vancouver)
Wilfert
Wood

Total: --221

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Ablonczy
Benoit
Breitkreuz
Burton
Cadman
Casson
Chatters
Comartin
Cummins
Day
Desjarlais
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Forseth
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grewal
Hill (Macleod)
Hilstrom
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
Mayfield
McDonough
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Peschisolido
Proctor
Reynolds
Ritz
Robinson
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
Stoffer
Toews
Vellacott
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: --47

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bradshaw
Cotler
Folco
Fournier
Gray (Windsor West)
MacAulay
Marceau
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Plamondon
Sauvageau
Thibault (West Nova)
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Venne

Total: --14

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I declare the motion carried. Accordingly the bill stands referred to the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

    (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee.)

*   *   *

+-Export Development Act

    The House resumed from October 1 consideration of the motion that Bill C-31, an act to amend the Export Development Act and to make consequential amendments to other acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion at second reading of Bill C-31.

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I think you would find consent that those who voted on the previous motion be recorded as voting on this motion now before the House, with Liberal members voting yes.

+-

    Mr. Garry Breitkreuz: Mr. Speaker, Alliance members present will vote no.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Pierre Brien: Mr. Speaker, the members of the Bloc Quebecois oppose this motion.

+-

    Mr. Yvon Godin: Mr. Speaker, the NDP members will vote against this motion.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill: Mr. Speaker, the coalition is voting against this motion.

*   *   *

  +-(1810)  

[Translation]

    (The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

-

(Division No. 147)

YEAS

Members

Adams
Alcock
Allard
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bellemare
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Bonwick
Boudria
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Carroll
Castonguay
Catterall
Cauchon
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Coderre
Collenette
Comuzzi
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dhaliwal
Dion
Dromisky
Drouin
Duhamel
Duplain
Easter
Eggleton
Eyking
Farrah
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gagliano
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Graham
Grose
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Hubbard
Ianno
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karetak-Lindell
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Knutson
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
Lastewka
Lavigne
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Maloney
Manley
Marcil
Marleau
Matthews
McCallum
McCormick
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peterson
Pettigrew
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Steckle
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tobin
Tonks
Torsney
Ur
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wappel
Whelan
Wilfert
Wood

Total: --161

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Ablonczy
Anders
Anderson (Cypress Hills--Grasslands)
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bergeron
Bigras
Borotsik
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Brison
Burton
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Comartin
Crête
Cummins
Dalphond-Guiral
Day
Desjarlais
Desrochers
Doyle
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grewal
Grey (Edmonton North)
Guay
Guimond
Hearn
Herron
Hill (Macleod)
Hill (Prince George--Peace River)
Hilstrom
Hinton
Jaffer
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lebel
Loubier
Lunn (Saanich--Gulf Islands)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
Mayfield
McDonough
McNally
Ménard
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Moore
Nystrom
Obhrai
Pallister
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Peschisolido
Picard (Drummond)
Proctor
Rajotte
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Reynolds
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Roy
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stoffer
Strahl
Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest)
Toews
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Vellacott
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
White (North Vancouver)
Williams
Yelich

Total: --107

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bradshaw
Cotler
Folco
Fournier
Gray (Windsor West)
MacAulay
Marceau
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Plamondon
Sauvageau
Thibault (West Nova)
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Venne

Total: --14

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I declare the motion carried. Accordingly, this bill is referred to the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

    (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): It being 6.12 p.m., the House will now proceed to consideration of private members' business as listed on today's order paper.


+-PRIVATE MEMBERS' BUSINESS

[Private Members' Business]

*   *   *

[English]

+-All-Numeric Dates Act

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.) moved that Bill C-327, an act to establish a national standard for the representation of dates in all-numeric form, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

    He said: Madam Speaker, I greatly appreciate the support of my colleague from Winnipeg South. He is a big supporter of this kind of thing.

    I am pleased to have this opportunity to speak to Bill C-327, which I introduced earlier this year. It is an act to establish a national standard for the representation of dates in all numeric form. The bill addresses a matter which is of increasing importance in this post-millennium computer age. I would say this is our date with destiny.

    I want to thank all those who have worked hard to promote standardized all numeric dates over the years. This is a dry but nonetheless very important topic that affects everyone in Canada and indeed everyone in the world.

    I would like to mention Ross Stevenson, the former MP for Durham, who introduced a similar bill in 1990. I would also like to mention the member for Elk Island who has introduced bills on this topic and who continues to crusade for a standard system of expressing dates. I would also like to express my thanks to Duncan Bath of Peterborough. He and his colleagues have championed this cause for many years.

    My riding of Peterborough is often remembered as a bastion of opposition to what we used to call the metric system. It is less often remembered that Peterborough was also a national base for the promotion of the metric system, especially through the efforts of the Canadian General Electric Company and people associated with that business.

    The bill has nothing to do with the metric or the SI systems, but it does deal directly with the importance of national standards in everyday life, in business and in science. Interest in international standards continues in Peterborough to this very day.

    As long as dates are written out in longhand or spoken they present few problems. For example, the 2nd day of the 10th month of the year 2001 is a very clear way of giving today's date as long as one speaks English or, in the translated version of this speech, as long as one speaks French.

    However, all numeric dates are increasingly used in the programming of computers, for example, in mass billings or other mailings, or by people communicating with each other by computer. Such dates are compact and, properly expressed, they can be read by people irrespective of their language.

    However, without a standard format both humans and computers can quickly become confused, sometimes dangerously confused. Let us say that I come across a can of food with a due date of 04/01/02. I ask the members of the House whether that date is: February 4, 1901, February 4, 2001, April 2, 1901, April 2, 2001, January 4, 1902, January 4, 2002, April 1, 1902, April 1, 2002, January 2, 1904, January 2, 2004, February 2, 1904, or February 1, 1904. This one date, 04/01/02, has 12 possible interpretations if we do not know the order of the numbers in the date.

    Do I open this can of food and consume the contents because that is the due date? I have to say that some members are immediately saying the early 20th century dates like 1901 or 1902 are hypothetical. This is not the case. I once found a can of meat quite well preserved after more than 100 years in a cache of a 19th century expedition to the Canadian Arctic. Sadly, the due date had been worn off by blizzards during the 100 years so I do not know which date format was used. I have to say that the meat was fine.

    I should also point out that using a mixed letter/number format does not help much.

  +-(1815)  

    The date I gave before of 04/01/02 could be 04/Jan/02. People who read English or French might think they understand exactly what that is but this could still represent a date in 1902, 2002, 1904 or 2004. Even with Jan inserted, for those of us who read French and English, there are still four possible interpretations.

    At present, not only do businesses and government departments use different date conventions, the same business or department may use more than one. For example my friend, Duncan Bath, in Peterborough received an account statement from his bank with a day/month/year date on one line and with a month/day/year format on the very next line.

    Lloyd Kitchen of Manitoba, in a letter to Maclean's, pointed out that 02-04-06 means April 2, 2006 on a Manitoba driver's licence, I say this to my friend from Winnipeg South. It means April 6, 2002 on a GST form. It means February 4, 2006 on his car repair bill, and June 2, 2004 as the best before date on a package of prunes. Just think what those prunes could do if the date was misinterpreted.

    The ad hoc use of numerical dates is confusing, inefficient and potentially dangerous. For example, there is the danger of confusing dates on prescriptions and medications or on cheques. All this could be solved quite easily by agreement on a standard all numeric date format.

    My emphasis is on agreement not on the format, but the format I propose would be year-month-day. This is not my idea. This is a standard approach accepted years ago by the International Standards Organization as ISO 8601 1988 and adopted by our own standards body, the Canadian Standards Association, as a national standard of Canada; of course it is a voluntary national standard of Canada because that is the way we operate here.

    They argue, as do I, that the most useful approach is to go from large to small, from the general to the particular. We do this in most other cases, for example: hours/minutes/seconds; dollars/cents; for angles it is degrees/minutes/seconds; and even our numbering system goes from thousands/hundreds/ tens/units, from large to small.

    The bill proposes that Industry Canada promote this national standard so that today's date, when expressed numerically, would be 2001/10/02. That is the format on which once we have agreed on the order there can be absolutely no doubt. It would be October 2, 2001. The way it is said or written out in full does not matter. It is only when it is all numerical that we must know the order of the digits.

    In the format I am proposing, I suggest that the year be put in full. Therefore it would be 2001/10/02. That is for added clarification.

    I urge all members to support this standard approach to the use of all numeric dates. It will make our lives safer and less confusing and it will make for greater efficiency in our government and non-government organizations.

    Not so long ago, by spending billions of dollars, the whole world survived Y2K. The problem then was dates embedded in computer programs and records, in formats that varied greatly. Although we still do not know, this may have solved the problem in computers but it has not solved the problem for people using computers and their products. The public is inconvenienced, put at risk and ultimately has to pay for the lack of a standard way of expressing dates.

    I strongly urge the federal government, especially Industry Canada, and agencies to move quickly to set an example on this issue. Let us begin by programming the machines that spew out bills, cheques and mass mailings in a standard date format. Then we can forget about the date format in all those cases as it would be programmed in. Then let us move on to standardized dates in less automated cases.

  +-(1820)  

    I commend Canada Post, the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency and some other organizations for being reasonably consistent in these matters. I am sure they would be glad to advise others on them.

    I hope this debate will draw the attention of those in power to set the date format for their organization so the public has the right to read the date in a standardized, unambiguous manner.

    I look forward to comments from all my colleagues here in the House on this very important topic.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): If members will permit me, when a motion is presented by a member from the government side we usually go to the opposition, but I would like to give the floor now to the parliamentary secretary to put the government's position.

    If the House does not give its consent I will go to the opposition members but this may not give the government time to put its position.

+-

    Mr. Ken Epp: Madam Speaker, I think there will enough time for everyone. The member only used 10 minutes.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Claude Drouin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today on behalf of the Minister of Industry to speak to Bill C-327, an act to establish a national standard for the representation of dates in all-numeric form.

    As the hon. member for Peterborough mentioned, all of us here in the House will be familiar with the experience of seeing a date such as 03-04-2001 and wondering whether it means March 4 or April 3. The member was most eloquent.

    This confusion can affect more than on-time bill payments. It can affect the use of prescriptions, for example, or “best before” dates on a wide range of products.

  +-(1825)  

[English]

    I am pleased to be able to respond to this issue as it allows me to speak very briefly on the importance of voluntary standards and Canada's national standards system. A standard is a document that describes the performance, dimensions or impact of a product, survey or system.

    Standards are used in a very wide range of applications, from the Internet to iron ore composition to quality management.

[Translation]

    In Canada, voluntary standards activity is co-ordinated by the Standards Council of Canada, a federal crown corporation that fosters and promotes voluntary standardization. The council oversees the work of the National Standards System, a network of about 250 organizations. Four of these organizations develop standards. These are CSA International, Underwriters Laboratory Canada, the Canadian General Standards Board and the Bureau de normalisation du Québec.

    The remaining organizations provide conformity assessment services such as testing, certification, or registration to quality management systems such as ISO 9000 or environmental management systems such as ISO 14000.

    The Standards Council is also responsible for Canada's participation in the development of international standards. The council is Canada's member on the International Organization for Standardization, or ISO, and the International Electrotechnical Commission, or IEC.

    ISO and IEC bring together volunteers from over a hundred countries to develop standards for almost every product imaginable, from ski bindings to medical devices. These standards support the trade of safe and reliable products across borders. In Canada alone, there are 3,000 volunteers that participate in international standards development.

    Canada is not just a participant in this effort, but also a leader. Over 100 ISO and IEC technical committees, subcommittees and working groups are headed by Canadians, including the committees that developed the influential ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 series.

    As the world moves towards a single, global market, international standards are becoming increasingly important. Efforts are underway to harmonize Canadian standards with those of our trading partners. A growing majority of national standards of Canada approved by the Standards Council are based on international standards.

    This brings me to the bill in question. The hon. member has modeled his proposal on ISO standard 8601, titled “Data elements and interchange formats-Representation of dates and times”, developed in 1988 by the International Organization for Standardization.

    This standard gives guidelines for indicating dates and times in a numeric format, represented by eight digits, as year-year-year-year, hyphen, month-month, hyphen, day-day.

    I would note that Canada has already adopted a national standard in this area which is virtually identical to the ISO standard. The Canadian standard, CAN/CSA Z234.4, entitled “All-Numeric Dates and Times”, does indeed specify a numerical approach as recommended by the hon. member.

    I would like to make one comment on the exception in clause 6 of the bill, which reads as follows:

    

The last two digits may be used to represent the year (a) in the case of years nineteen hundred and ninety to nineteen hundred and ninety-nine, inclusively; or (b) in the case of the year two thousand and thirty-two and subsequent years.

    This exception is not part of the existing Canadian standard and could introduce confusion.

[English]

    I can relate that Industry Canada is advancing a wide range of measures to promote the use of the existing national standards. These measures include the use of the date, standard and departmental correspondence and documentation, and encouraging the similar use by industry portfolio agencies and support for the Standards Council of Canada's efforts to promote adoption of the standard.

    I wish to thank my hon. colleague from Peterborough for raising this important issue. Although the bill to create a national standard is not necessary at this time given the existence of such a standard, we will continue to make every effort to support its use in Canada.

  +-(1830)  

+-

    Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, I would like to begin my speech by expressing my extreme jealousy to the member for Peterborough. I believe it was at least four years ago that I first entered a bill to do exactly this.

    Even though I have some mathematical credentials, and I know something about statistics, the odds have been totally against me and in this random draw for private members' business, I have never been drawn, not once. So mathematically, I am just behind the eight ball, so I express my jealousy. However, I congratulate him for having the good luck of being chosen to have his bill debated. It is unfortunate that it is not votable and that we could bring this thing to a conclusion and actually do it.

    I certainly speak in favour of the bill. It is not quite as good as mine, but it certainly is going in the right direction. I will explain that in a few seconds.

    I was involved with computers from about the time they were invented. As a matter of fact, when I first started teaching at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, believe it or not, we were still teaching our students how to use a slide rule. After a while, along came mechanical calculators, then later on electronic calculators. I was involved in those first years when we got those big, behemoth computers that occupied a whole room and had less memory than my little pocket machine.

    I did some programming and was involved in designing programs for our students. As well, I taught programming. Again, here was a missed opportunity. I wrote a program for word processing, including a mail merge before Bill Gates was even born, and now he is a multi-billionaire. I did not realize that I had come onto something that was really very useful. I could have been financially independent if I had gone to work on it and recognized the value of it.

    I wrote that program to help me in my administrative work. At that time I was the head of the mathematics department at NAIT.

    I have used this standard year/month/day for approximately 40 years. When I first wrote computer programs and if I had data that required sorting, I discovered almost immediately that if the date was given in the order of year/month/day and was sorted numerically, it produced a correct chronological sorting of the data. If that information was put in any other order, then it could produce January, February, March and so on, regardless of what year they were in. If the month was put first, it sorted by month instead of by year. Obviously when sorting data we want the year to be the primary sort element and then the month and the day. It is totally logical.

    As my colleague from Peterborough has already pointed out, in all other areas we do go from the large unit to the small. That is totally logical and is the way it is always done.

    I would like to say a little about my bill which will probably never be debated or voted on, and I am very discouraged about that. However, my bill took quite a different approach than the bill of the member for Peterborough. He is asking that the Minister of Industry take such measures as are necessary to promote the use of the national standard. That is a very fine bill. I can support that.

    My bill, Bill C-281, is in the draw right now but it has never chosen. Its purpose is to change the Canada Evidence Act. It basically says that where there is a date in a document and if it is expressed using numerals only, then if there is a dispute this is the interpretation that should be put on it.

  +-(1835)  

    I am not coercing or forcing people to change, as long as the documents they give are 100% clear. In other words, they may use 3/4/5 which means April 3, 2005. If there is a statement somewhere else in their document that states the dates as being given in that order, then there cannot be an ambiguity. It would be clear.

    On the other hand, if they had given a date which said their pension would start on such and such a date, and if that date was before they were born, one could argue also that that was not really ambiguous.

    However, there are many instances of ambiguity and since we have gone into the year 2001, as the hon. member pointed out, the combinations are now myriad. I saw one the other day that used numerals and the abbreviation of a word. I do not remember the exact date, but it was along this line: it said 02 October 01. Now the word October clearly indicates the month, but I do not know if that is the October 1, 2002 or the October 2, 2001, which happens to be today. It is ambiguous.

    It only makes sense for us to have a unique relationship with numerals. There should be a unique meaning when we use a symbol.

    For example, we go to a service station to fill up a vehicle with gasoline. Let us say it comes to $30.62. We do not walk in and say we do not know if we should pay $30.62 or $62.30. There is no ambiguity because we clearly understand that the number of the digits before the decimal point indicate the number of dollars and the digits after the decimal point indicate the number of cents. Yet, when it comes to dates, we do not have any problems with writing these dates all over. Over and over again I have seen the examples the member gave. Again, I have had a great deal of correspondence from people who have had these same ambiguities.

    On my bank statement not long ago they used just two numbers, one for the month and one for the day. Of course I just received the statement so I knew that when it said 10/3 it meant October 3. However it was still a bit ambiguous.

    I would also like to point out that if this were votable I would vote in favour of it because it is a step in the right direction. I would like to advise the hon. member opposite that I think he may still be permitting an ambiguity with clause 6 of his bill. He is probably aware of that.

    Part of the bill states that the last two digits may be used to represent the year if it is between 1990 and 1999 or subsequent to the year 2032. If we use 95, I am still left guessing again if it is 1995 or 2095. I would cut that out of there. After our Y2K experience, we should get in the habit of using four digits to represent the year.

    Those are my thoughts on this. This makes so much sense. Why can we as Canadians not just put this into legislation and say this is the standard, start using it?

    I would like to see some of my bill incorporated into it with respect to business billings. When a business sends out a bill and the date is ambiguous, if the person does not pay it until the date that he interprets it is due, it can be to the advantage of that individual instead of to the business because the business was sloppy in the way in which it produced its bill or statement. This way we would have a rapid change.

    I think we would find that if this bill were passed and the Minister of Industry put out some ads saying that this was the new standard and that we were going to start following it, then Canadian usage would change very rapidly. We then would be able to communicate with one another in such a way and actually understand what each other meant, which might be quite novel in Canadian history.

  +-(1840)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Stéphane Bergeron (Verchères--Les-Patriotes, BQ): Madam Speaker, I am also pleased to address this bill introduced by the hon. member for Peterborough. I was very interested in his comments.

    I congratulate him for raising this important issue in the House. I also express my regrets to the hon. member for Elk Island, who did not have luck on his side. The hon. member for Peterborough did, but it is the reality of us parliamentarians in this House. Our initiatives, whether it is motions or bills, are randomly selected. This time the hon. member for Peterborough was the lucky one, unlike our colleague from Elk Island.

    The fact remains that, beyond the issue of chance, the two were pursuing the same objective, which is to establish a national standard for the representation of dates in all-numeric form.

    The member for Peterborough resorted to humour to present some Kafkaesque situations that are unlikely to occur in reality. In spite of all the constraints imposed by the existence of several models of representation, we manage without too many problems to pick our way around the various ways of identifying the date in numeric form.

    The fact remains that, beyond the very funny presentation made by the hon. member for Peterborough, this could indeed create problems and confusion which, in turn, can often have serious consequences.

    This bill is not a votable item, but if it had been one, we would probably have supported it, because its objective is laudable.

    In a world that puts the emphasis on information technology and computers, we were able to see firsthand the importance of the representation of dates in all-numeric form with Y2K. At the time, it was feared that our computers would go haywire, because we were switching from the two digit representation, such as 70, 80 or 90, that had always been used since computers were first introduced, to something like 00 or 01. This could potentially create problems, since computers might have interpreted this as if we were going back to the beginning of the last century.

    We then saw the need for a standard that would prevent such confusion and the serious consequences that it might have.

    When one has a date that reads 01-01-01, everyone knows that means January 1, 2001. We scarcely need know where the year, the month and the day fit in that sequence. Generally speaking, we are all capable of knowing what month, year and day are referred to.

    Returning to the example of my colleague from Peterborough, of 02-03-04, we are then in a bit of a problematical situation. We can no longer tell what the year, the month and the day is in the sequence.

    I believe indeed that it is appropriate for a universal standard to be recognized so as to avoid this type of imbroglio.

    The hon. member for Peterborough proposes use of the standard recognized by the International Organization for Standardization to which, as the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry has pointed out, Canada subscribes. I believe that the objective of my colleague from Peterborough, and he will correct me if I am wrong, is, on top of acknowledging that Canada subscribes to this international standard, to see that it is actually applied.

    Experience has proven beyond reasonable doubt that in actual fact, people continue to put the year at the end, the year at the beginning, or the month at the beginning.

  +-(1845)  

    We end up with a variety of situations and representations of the numeric date that may, as I said earlier, create complications.

    Beyond the recognition of this standard and the fact that Canada subscribes to it, we must look to its actual application.

    The standard proposed is the year, represented by four digits, followed by the month and the day, each represented by two digits and separated by a hyphen or a space.

    Obviously, because practices vary considerably and Canada is a bilingual country, the bilingual fact often giving rise to different interpretations of events, I took the trouble, and members will understand that, to look at the French language standards and how they compared to the standard proposed by the member for Peterborough, a standard used by the International Organization for Standardization.

    So, in consulting the various reference documents published by the Office de la langue française, we noted that, indeed, usage in the French language conformed to the international standard being proposed by the member for Peterborough.

    I take the liberty of quoting Français au bureau produced by the Office de la langue française, which is available in electronic format on its Internet site.

—the date and the time may be represented in all-numeric form to meet certain technical requirements, including those of tables, schedules, coding, various readouts. In this case, the following order is to be used: four digits represent the year, two represent the month and two represent the day, in this order, in accordance with an international standard—

    This is of course the one referred to earlier.

Separators to be used between the year, the month and the day are either a space or a hyphen. Neither a colon nor an oblique may be used.

    I think, as far as the French language is concerned, the practice conforms entirely with what the hon. member for Peterborough is proposing.

    Now, the Office de la langue française also provides that the year may be represented by just two digits. However, given the change in the millennium, this may give rise to some confusion. So, the practice recommended by the Office de la langue française is to use four digits to represent the year.

    The bill, as my colleague from Elk Island and the hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry mentioned, introduces a standard or companion rule that I would describe as Byzantine, and which may actually add some confusion to the current situation. The rule is that found in clause 6, which states that the years 1990 through 1999 as well as year 2032 and subsequent years may be represented by the last two digits. Obviously, the reasoning is sound, 2032 makes sense, since there are no months with more than 31 days.

    However, in a case such as this, I would think that we have to trust in people's intelligence. If we adopt a rigorous method that stipulates that the year comes first, then surely people will know that when it says 31 at the beginning of a sequence, it refers to the year. People will understand that, if the standard is applied rigorously, when a sequence begins with 31, it refers to 2031 or 1931. This is the problem with a sequence where the year is represented by only two digits.

    Now, why does this bill provide, in clause 6, that the years 1990 through 1999 may be represented by two digits? That remains a mystery to me. I think it only adds to the confusion. This clause should be deleted, if this bill were to be adopted.

    In closing, I will say that it is an entirely logical standard. Things are usually represented in this manner, from the largest unit to the smallest unit: metres, centimetres, millimetres; hours, minutes, seconds; dollars, cents, and so on.

    Therefore, I believe that the member for Peterborough's goal is commendable and completely legitimate. We endorse it, obviously, and it would be our pleasure, if this bill were to be voted on, to support it.

  +-(1850)  

[English]

+-

    Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP): Madam Speaker, I am pleased to speak on this debate tonight. I want the member for Elk Island to know that when it was mentioned today that private members' business was the issue of the dates, I automatically thought that it was his bill. I have seen it come by my desk each year as we come back from our summer recess and I automatically thought it was his. In heart and soul it is his, and he can take credit for that at least.

    My colleague from the Bloc said that this is a logically rational standard. What is scary is we all agree it is a logically rational standard and we do not have it in legislation. Following the standard has been voluntary but putting it in place has taken some 31 years.

    If I recall correctly, when I started my first full time job after high school in the early 1970s the whole metric issue was just coming out. People were cursing, screaming and complaining about the metric system, about having to change miles to kilometres and about having to buy new measuring cups. They were going to have to do all these horrible things, but they did them. They did it as far as kilometres and miles because they did not have any choice. Signs in one municipality could not be in kilometres per hour and the signs in another municipality in miles per hour. It had to be standardized. We recognized that and it was done.

    After high school my first full time job was doing clerical work at a hospital. I was told that the date had to be written down by year, month and day. It seemed totally logical to me. Of course I was a young person getting out in the workforce and I was going to do everything I was told. I am actually recognized as being a bit of a goody two-shoes about following rules and regulations. I have faithfully done this year after year because I was told that was the way it had to be done, that it was the law. I thought it was all part of the same law on the metric system.

    Imagine my surprise a few years ago when I saw the proposal by my hon. colleague from Elk Island that we put this date system in place with regard to evidence. I would go a step further and say we have to legislate it. It has been 27 years since I started doing it, and if it is still voluntary and a good part of the industry is not following it, then it is time to go that step further.

    I have listened to my colleagues here who all recognize that this is a good thing. Canadians must be wondering, “Why the heck are they not legislating it? This is common sense”. Then they probably think, “That explains it. It is common sense. It is logical and rational. That is why the government is not doing it. It would make sense”. The entire parliament is agreeing on it, so the government is not going to do it. We should be standardizing the date to year, month and day.

    My colleague from the Bloc mentioned the seriousness of it. He is quite right. I indicated that I did clerical work in a hospital. We can well imagine what would happen if each and every nurse, doctor and every other health care professional chose to write the date as they saw fit. If a case went before the courts, or if someone checked back on certain procedures, medications or other things on a patient's record, the dates would not be known. A number of patient records go beyond one month and the dates could be different within the files.

    I would stand here and say no big deal within the hospital system if the rule were in place and everybody followed it. Quite frankly, as the years progressed, fewer people followed the standard. I was the kind of person who said that we have to follow it because people would stray from it. It did become an issue. Even though the hospital had it as a standard, over the years it sort of lost its clout and it faded away and there were differences.

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    It is crucially important that we do not leave those issues to chance. There is a safety concern.

    As far as bank statements, pension accounts and those things are concerned, it is not okay to have a difference. A number of people out there may not recognize that the dates are written differently.

    We need a standardized date. Quite frankly it needs to be legislated. Hopefully then in 27 years we will all be doing it properly because quite frankly the voluntary way has not worked. It is crucially important that it goes a step further and is legislated.

    The bill by my colleague from Peterborough is not a votable item. I was going to stand and ask for unanimous consent to make the bill votable, however I agree that clause 6 just does not cut it. I think the bill has to go back to the drawing board. My colleague from Peterborough and possibly my colleague from Elk Island should throw it back in the bucket and by some logical chance, or maybe by some great chance the Minister of Industry could take the bull by the horns and put it in place without having to go through the whole process because it is the right thing to do.

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    Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, PC/DR): Madam Speaker, it is a pleasure to speak to Bill C-327, an act to establish a national standard for the representation of dates in all-numeric form. I commend the member for Peterborough for bringing forward the initiative. I am not sure that it is seizing the nation, but on the other hand for those who have to deal with it, such as the member who just spoke, it can be quite bothersome.

    It was easy to find references to this. A Canadian wrote to Maclean's on March 1, 1999 and said:

What does 02-04-06 mean? I checked it according to date systems on several documents around the house. On a Manitoba driver's licence, it would mean April 2, 2006. But on a GST form it would be April 6, 2002. On a car repair bill, 02-04-06 would be Feb. 4, 2006. And on a package of prunes, the best-before date would be June 2, 2004.

    This is the kind of thing that is pretty aggravating, and I find it unusual that even governments in the country cannot agree about standardization.

    I do not want to dominate interprovincial and federal-provincial negotiations, but it seems to me that a good way to move this issue forward would be to have a simple memo from government departments asking “Is everybody okay with the following system?” All governmental and intergovernmental departments would deal with it in a certain form from a certain date forward and people would be told that if they want to do business with a government department they should be on the same standard as well. If that were done we would be well on the way to standardization.

    Once every government in the country is working from one standardized way of representing the date in numeric form it would become the standard. It can start in the federal government and other governments and I am sure it would quickly work its way through the system.

    The issue that does concern me deals with the due date on the package of prunes. Everyone should realize that while it may just be a package of sour milk or a package of mouldy prunes to one person, it may be far more important to another person.

    I do think back to the Y2K problem where a simple thing like the date in a computer caused some real consternation for the whole known world at that time. That computer issue, which is another way in which that numeric representation of the date is used extensively, shows the need to have standardization. Standardization is needed in the computer industry and the Internet industry. Those industries are of growing importance to all of us, so we do need to standardize and I think we should get at it. We should not force people to do it, but the example should be set at the government level.

    The member who sponsored the legislation also mentioned that he would like it referred to the Standing Committee on Industry if it were to pass. It will not be voted on today so it may never actually get there. However, it is interesting to me that the Minister of Industry has taken on the issue of the Internet as his new national dream. A recent newspaper article states that the industry minister wants to fund such a project. He calls this initiative, this fibre optic cable and satellite delivery, the "new national dream". It could cost as much as $4 billion.

    The initiative here tonight costs very little but when it is combined with some of the other efforts that the Minister of Industry wants to be known for as the architect of the new national dream, it has a $4 billion price tag.

    I do not want to discount the importance of the Internet, broadband networks, fibre optics connections and so on, but I think that right now Canadians want a different priority from the Minister of Industry. I believe they do not want to talk about a national dream of fibre optics connections so much as they want to talk about a national dream of national security.

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    When we talk about $4 billion for interconnecting Canadians on the broadband fibre optic system, I do not think the budget will allow it. Bank of Montreal economists are predicting that next year's budget will possibly have a $5 billion deficit. We cannot afford this kind of thing at this time.

    It is one of the things the Minister of Industry will have to adjust. He may well agree that standardization of dates and numeric form is a good idea. It may well be something he wants to promote and I would encourage him to do so. However, this other issue is something I do not think Canadians want to pursue at this time. It is a matter of priorities.

    Certainly regulatory change is fine but is $4 billion for the fibre optics plan for the Minister of Industry's future run for the leadership bid something we can actually afford? I would say the answer is no. It is not a bad idea. It is not an evil thing. It is just that when there are budgetary constraints, and it is worldwide and Canada is no different, we just cannot afford $4 billion for computerized connections from coast to coast.

    When I talk to people, numeric dates are far from their minds. Fibre optic connections are far from their minds. They are talking about things they want for personal security. People are not talking about a big military presence; they do not even think about that so much. They are talking about economic security, security and integration on things like immigration, borders and foreign affairs. They want to bring that together. They want all government departments to think in terms of what security means for a family, for an individual, for the nation.

    People want economic security and a fall budget out of the government. They want to see a whole bunch of things that mean something to a lot of individuals. While numeric representation of dates is something they would find interesting, they would hope that parliament, the minister, the industry department and the government generally would look after their security concerns, economic and otherwise, so that they and their families can go forward with confidence.

    I encourage the member for Peterborough to continue to push the issue forward. It would be a good issue for the industry committee to be seized with and it should be brought forward. I will be sitting on the industry committee and would be happy to support that initiative down the road, after we deal with some of the more pressing security needs of Canadians over the fall session. I hope he will support the initiative. I will support him once we settle the security issues which I think Canadians want us to be seized with right now.

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    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The hon. member who moved the motion has five minutes but he has agreed to give three of his five minutes to the hon. member for Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Aldershot.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I do not know whether I can do it in three minutes, but I wanted to comment that the member for Peterborough was often at the high noon in his reform proposals. However, this time I have to say it is more like at the dawn. The member for Peterborough and the member for Elk Island in my view have failed in their proposals to allow for the fact that we are in the computer age.

    Space on a computer screen is money. Space on a computer screen is jealously guarded. I note in this particular piece of legislation that the devil is in the details. We see in clause 5 that what is specifically proposed is that the year be represented, going from left to right, by four digits, followed by a space or hyphen, followed by two digits for the month, followed by a space or hyphen, followed by two characters for the day.

    The problem there is that it is a total of ten characters. I would suggest that if the member had considered using Roman numerals for the month, he only would have had a selection of 12 characters or letters to choose from. He would have been able to reduce the space for January 1, 2001 to 01I2001, which is seven characters, or he could reduce it to I101 which is four characters. Indeed it does not matter which order he uses the letter. He could mix it. He could put the letter at the beginning or the end and have 1I01 or if he forgoes the 01 to represent the year he could have 1I1.

    In medieval days they recognized that there could be confusion between the letter I and the number one and they substituted the letter J. So we could have, for January 1, 2001, 1J1. I cannot stress enough the potential elegance that is available if we were to use Roman numerals.

    For example, August 18, 2001 would be 18VIII01. Not only does that evoke the Romans and the coliseum and encourage children to understand the history of numbers, but I point out that my suggestion is entirely in keeping with the intention of this legislation, which is a representation of dates in an all numeric form. Sometimes we forget that Roman numerals are not letters at all, they are numbers.

    I would urge the member to reconsider this legislation. Certainly if it goes forward and is debated in the industry committee, I would think that the industry committee should consider my proposal because, if we use Roman numerals, we can do without the hyphens and we can have a maximum of eight characters rather than ten on our computer screens to represent unambiguous dates.

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    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I thank all my colleagues. I would say to my colleague who last spoke that I was very interested in what he had to say. The next time, and I hope it is at the industry committee that we debate the bill, he and I can debate in Latin. We will really move it along.

    I thank all my colleagues for their support and interventions. I gladly withdraw clause 6. The bill was written in the 20th century, which was a long time ago. I still remember the logic of the 32. I cannot myself remember the logic of the 90 to 99, so I would gladly withdraw that.

    Security and safety have been mentioned. I have tried not to use that example, but this is a serious matter. Either we have a completely unambiguous way of expressing dates, be it writing them out in full or having columns with year, month and day over the top or we give up numeric dates. I do not want to come back to the House in some years time and say “I told you so” when something serious goes wrong because of a lack of standardization.

    I appreciate the support from most members for my method of expressing the date, but the point here is the unambiguous expression of dates. In the computer age we are going to use numbers so it should be the unambiguous expression of dates in numerical form.

    I thank members and look forward to further discussion at the standing committee of industry.

  +-(1910)  

[Translation]

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    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The time provided for the consideration of private members' business has now expired. As the motion has not been designated as a votable item, the order is dropped from the order paper

-Adjournment Proceedings

[Adjournment Debate]

*   *   *

[English]

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    A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved

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    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR): Madam Speaker, I am pleased to rise on an issue that I raised on April 27, 2001. I am not sure how I should put that date considering the debate we just had.

    At that time, I asked the Minister of Health a question, one of many I have asked the Minister of Health and his department, about an electronic device that was designed and built near Truro, Nova Scotia. This electronic device makes a noise to scare away birds from oil spills, farms and airports. It can be programmed to address any kind of bird and can be adjusted to any situation. It is currently sold in 26 countries around the world and is a great option to other ways of scaring birds away from oil spills, airports and farms.

    However, for some reason, the Department of Health, somewhere along the line, designated this item as a pesticide. I feel it was designated as a pesticide so the department could charge tax on it. This is a burden on a small business that should not be there. It is not a pesticide. It has no residue, no contamination and no problems.

    As I said earlier, it is sold in 26 countries around the world and only Canada has designated it as a pesticide. Why would the other countries designate it as a pesticide?

    I have raised this question many times and have not been satisfied with the answer. The Department of Health did reduce the amount of tax because it felt it was a cumbersome burden on small business. However it is not a matter of reducing it. It should be eliminated. It makes absolutely no sense for this tax to be charged on an electronic device because it is designated as a pesticide.

    I hope the parliamentary secretary will stand in the House and give me the good news that the department will eliminate this electronic device from the list of pesticides.

[Translation]

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    Mr. Jeannot Castonguay (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I know that the member spoke to the minister. I can assure him that he takes his concerns very seriously.

    I would like to try to explain here how the Pest Control Products Act applies to products that scare away birds.

    All products claimed to be usable in the fight against harmful organisms are subject to the Pest Control Products Act. The expression fight against means among other things that harmful organisms are kept away, are attracted, prevented from infesting or eliminated. These organisms may be weeds, insects, molds, rodents and even bacteria in swimming pools.

    The Pest Management Regulatory Agency of Health Canada certifies a whole range of products for such purposes.

    The device the member is referring to is designed to scare birds away in order, among other reasons, to prevent aircraft from crashing. We should all understand that it is important to ensure that devices claiming to improve human protection are tested as to their effectiveness. In other words, whether they do what they should. Certified products must also bear a label carrying instructions for safe and effective use.

    Under the Pest Control Products Act, the annual cost to continue certification of pest control products represents 3% of annual sales, with the maximum cost payable of $2,690 and the minimum of $75. These costs enable the Pest Management Regulatory Agency to run ongoing programs to protect Canadians, such as the monitoring of compliance, renewal of certification, reassessment of old pesticides and special examinations.

  -(1915)  

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    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The motion to adjourn the House is now deemed to have been adopted. Accordingly, this House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 2 p.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

    (The House adjourned at 7.15 p.m.)