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37th PARLIAMENT, 1st SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 80

CONTENTS

Tuesday, September 18, 2001




1005
V ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
V     Access to Information and Privacy Acts
V         Mr. John O'Reilly (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V     Courts Administration Service Act
V         Hon. Denis Coderre
V         Adoption des motions; première lecture et impression du projet de loi
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         The Speaker
V     Order in Council Appointments
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V Government Orders
V     Allotted Day--Anti-Terrorism Legislation
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)

1010
V         

1015
V         Mr. Dennis Mills (Toronto—Danforth, Lib.)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson

1020
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

1025

1030
V         Mr. Dennis Mills
V         Mr. Stockwell Day

1035
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Stockwell Day
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)

1040

1045

1050
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan
V         Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan
V         Mr. Dick Proctor (Palliser, NDP)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan

1055
V         Mr. Lynn Myers (Parliamentary Secretary to the Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)

1100

1105
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Lynn Myers
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Lynn Myers

1110
V         Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Lynn Myers
V         Ms. Pierrette Venne (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, Ind. BQ)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Ms. Pierrette Venne
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Ms. Pierrette Venne

1115

1120
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ)

1125

1130
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Pierre Brien (Témiscamingue, BQ)
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral

1135
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP)

1140

1145
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie

1150
V         Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)

1155
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie
V         Mr. Stan Keyes (Hamilton West, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie

1200
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)

1205

1210
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Peter MacKay
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Peter MacKay

1215
V         Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR)

1220

1225
V         Mr. Dennis Mills (Toronto—Danforth, Lib.)
V         Mr. Jay Hill

1230
V         Mr. Stan Keyes (Hamilton West, Lib.)
V         Mr. Jay Hill
V         Mr. Dennis Mills
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal (Surrey Central, Canadian Alliance)

1235

1240
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal

1245
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Gurmant Grewal
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)

1250

1255
V         Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.)

1300
V         Mr. Jason Kenney
V         M. Benoît Sauvageau (Repentigny, BQ)
V         Mr. Jason Kenney

1305
V         Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain (Guelph—Wellington, Lib.)

1310

1315
V         Mr. Rick Casson (Lethbridge, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)
V         Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain

1320
V         Ms. Carolyn Bennett (St. Paul's, Lib.)

1325
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance)

1330
V         Ms. Carolyn Bennett
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom
V         Ms. Carolyn Bennett
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance)

1335

1340
V         Mr. John Cannis (Scarborough Centre, Lib.)

1345
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy
V         Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.)
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy
V         Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo—Cowichan, Canadian Alliance)

1350

1355
V Statements by Members
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. John Richardson (Perth--Middlesex, Lib.)

1400
V     Terrorism
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Paul Bonwick (Simcoe—Grey, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Bryon Wilfert (Oak Ridges, Lib.)
V     Tourism
V         Mrs. Cheryl Gallant (Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, Canadian Alliance)

1405
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Alex Shepherd (Durham, Lib.)
V     Children
V         Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ)
V     Heroism
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Mississauga South, Lib.)
V     Ovarian Cancer
V         Mr. John Cummins (Delta—South Richmond, Canadian Alliance)

1410
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP)
V     Rescue Workers
V         Ms. Christiane Gagnon (Québec, BQ)
V     Candace Salmon
V         Mr. Andy Savoy (Tobique—Mactaquac, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR)

1415
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Lynn Myers (Waterloo—Wellington, Lib.)
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         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

1420
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Saint-Maurice, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)

1425
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)

1430
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)

1435
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     National Defence
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V     Air Safety
V         Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)

1440
V         Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Chuck Cadman (Surrey North, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Chuck Cadman (Surrey North, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V         Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V     Airline Safety
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)

1445
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V         Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Mr. Inky Mark (Dauphin—Swan River, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)
V         Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V     Foreign Affairs
V         Mrs. Lynne Yelich (Blackstrap, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)

1450
V         Mrs. Lynne Yelich (Blackstrap, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.)
V     The Economy
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Airline Safety
V         Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V         Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     Trade
V         Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.)

1455
V         Hon. Pierre Pettigrew (Minister for International Trade, Lib.)
V     The Economy
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Terrorism
V         Ms. Pierrette Venne (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, Ind. BQ)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.)
V     Airline Industry
V         Mr. John Harvard (Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia, Lib.)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     Trade
V         Mr. Charlie Penson (Peace River, Canadian Alliance)

1500
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.)
V     Cabinet Meetings
V         Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Saint-Maurice, Lib.)
V     The Economy
V         Hon. Lorne Nystrom (Regina—Qu'Appelle, NDP)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Points of Order
V         Business of the House--Speaker's Ruling
V         The Speaker

1505

1510

1515
V     Ways and Means
V         Notice of Motion
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V Government Orders
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Anti-Terrorism Legislation
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)

1520
V         Mr. Reed Elley
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Reed Elley

1525
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.)

1530
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.)

1535
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln
V         Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.)

1540

1545
V         Mr. Darrel Stinson (Okanagan—Shuswap, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Dan McTeague

1550
V         Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Dan McTeague
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)

1555

1600
V         Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ)

1605
V         Mr. Myron Thompson
V         Mr. Chuck Cadman (Surrey North, Canadian Alliance)

1610

1615
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.)
V         Mr. Myron Thompson
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis

1620
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis
V         Mr. Chuck Cadman
V         Mr. Andy Savoy (Tobique—Mactaquac, Lib.)

1625
V         Mr. Roy Cullen (Etobicoke North, Lib.)

1630
V         Mr. Andy Savoy
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Andy Savoy
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.)

1635

1640
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Art Hanger (Calgary Northeast, Canadian Alliance)

1645
V         Mr. John Bryden
V         Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP)
V         Mr. John Bryden
V         Mr. Deepak Obhrai (Calgary East, Canadian Alliance)

1650
V         Mr. Greg Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest, PC/DR)

1655
V         Mr. Jean-Yves Roy (Matapédia—Matane, BQ)
V         Mr. Deepak Obhrai

1700
V         Mr. Werner Schmidt (Kelowna, Canadian Alliance)

1705

1710
V         Hon. Don Boudria
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Leon Benoit
V         Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.)
V         Mr. Werner Schmidt
V         Mr. Gary Lunn (Saanich—Gulf Islands, PC/DR)

1715
V         Mr. Werner Schmidt
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)

1750
V     [------]
V     (Division 139)
V         The Speaker

1800
V     [------]
V     (Division 140)
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Don Boudria
V         The Speaker
V         The Speaker

1805
V Private Members' Business
V     Adverse Drug Reactions
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)

1810

1815

1820
V         Ms. Bonnie Brown (Oakville, Lib.)

1825
V         Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance)

1830

1835
V         Mr. Réal Ménard (Hochelaga--Maisonneuve, BQ)

1840

1845
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland--Colchester, PC/DR)

1850
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis

1855
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V Adjournment Proceedings
V     [------]
V     [------]
V         Lumber Industry
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Pat O'Brien (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade, Lib.)

1900
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)






CANADA

House of Commons Debates


VOLUME 137 
NUMBER 80 
1st SESSION 
37th PARLIAMENT 

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Tuesday, September 18, 2001

Speaker: The Honourable Peter Milliken

    The House met at 10 a.m.


Prayers



+ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

[Routine Proceedings]

*   *   *

  +(1005)  

[English]

+Access to Information and Privacy Acts

+

    Mr. John O'Reilly (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2), I have the pleasure to table, in both official languages, two copies of the National Defence and Canadian Forces ombudsman 2000-01 annual report to parliament on the administration of the Access to Information and Privacy Acts.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Courts Administration Service Act

+-

    Hon. Denis Coderre (for the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-30, an act to establish a body that provides administrative services to the Federal Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, the Court Martial Appeal Court and the Tax Court of Canada, to amend the Federal Court Act, the Tax Court of Canada Act and the Judges Act, and to make related and consequential amendments to other Acts.

    (Motions deemed adopted and bill read the first time and printed.)

*   *   *

[English]

+-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 ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

    I would also like to request permission to table documents.

+-

    The Speaker: Is it agreed that all questions stand?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    The Speaker: Is it agreed that we revert to tabling of documents?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

*   *   *

+-Order in Council Appointments

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to table, in both official languages, a number of order in council appointments made recently by the government.


+-Government Orders

[Supply]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Allotted Day--Anti-Terrorism Legislation

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance) moved:

    That this House call upon the government to introduce anti-terrorism legislation similar in principle to the United Kingdom's Terrorism Act, 2000, and that such legislation provide for:

the naming of all known international terrorist organizations operating in Canada;

a complete ban on fundraising activities in support of terrorism, and provisions for the seizure of assets belonging to terrorists or terrorist organizations;

the immediate ratification of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism;

the creation of specific crimes for engaging in terrorist training activities in Canada or inciting terrorist acts abroad from Canada;

the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences; and

the detention and deportation to their country of origin of any people illegally in Canada or failed refugee claimants who have been linked to terrorist organizations.

    He said: Mr. Speaker, before I begin I would like to notify you that I will be splitting my time with my leader, the leader of the official opposition.

    “It's the end of the age of complacency”. That was a headline in the National Post yesterday. Under this heading we read:

    Security will become the dominant policy agenda in Canada for the foreseeable future...If there are new resources to be had, the security side of government will be able to lay claim to them a lot better, a lot faster and a lot quicker than other sectors.

    I will believe that when I see it. Unfortunately I am not confident that we will maintain the heightened vigilance enacted following the horrific events of September 11. I know that those concerns are also shared by the former commissioner of our Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Norman Inkster.

    During a recent interview, Mr. Inkster said:

    My concern is, just as has occurred in the past, we get a knee-jerk reaction and tighten everything up and a few months or a year from now we are back to where we were. Then we open the door to these kinds of people perpetrating similar events in the future. If we are serious about security--and we ought to be--then let's decide the appropriate level, let's fund it accordingly and let's maintain it. Our biggest risk is complacency.

    I am afraid that despite the mortal threat we and other democratic nations face, Canada will eventually grow lax, especially if bin Laden, the United States' prime suspect, bides his time.

    As Andrew Coyne of the Post writes:

--the enemy we face presents a unique combination: of enormous ambition, extraordinary capacity, and fanatical determination, such that he is willing to kill himself as well as others...If he is truly fiendish, he may do nothing for a time, until we grow lax, or tired, or bored, and forget what all the fuss was about. Then he will strike again.

    Our response to the tragic events in the United States cannot be limited to avenging this one atrocity. We cannot simply launch a quick retaliatory strike against the immediate culprits. Canada must, as President Bush has promised Americans, launch a massive and sustained campaign against international terrorism in general. However, as pointed out numerous times in the House yesterday, our security and intelligence agencies, like our national defence forces, have been starved for so long that the Canadian public is not confident that we have the capacity to fight such a sustained war.

    We are not confident that our present laws allow for apprehension and retention of terrorists and their associates. Therefore, today the Canadian Alliance asks the Government of Canada to immediately consider the question of anti-terrorism legislation.

    I would like to point out that this request was not born solely out of last week's events. We on this side of the House have been urging the Liberal government for some time to get tough with organized criminals, to eradicate senseless acts of violence, to effectively close the doors to undesirable migrants who so readily and easily take advantage of our generosity, and also to make aiding and abetting terrorists an offence.

    Before I proceed, I will say to you, Mr. Speaker, and to my colleagues that I mean no disrespect or animosity toward any of the many of the legitimate and trustworthy immigrants making Canada their home. We know that the vast majority of these people are law abiding citizens who have and will continue to contribute to the economic well-being of our nation as well as the cultural mosaic of the country. I refer only to those individuals who seek Canada as a stage, a stage to wage war against the United States and other nations.

    On April 30 during the second reading of Bill C-16 I stood in the House and said:

    If curbing the operation of terrorist front groups truly was the goal, we could emulate Great Britain's terrorism act 2000, which empowers cabinet to ban from its country any organization that it believes is involved in terrorist activities. The law proscribes any group if it commits or participates in acts of terrorism; if it prepares for terrorism; if it promotes or encourages terrorism; or if it is otherwise concerned in terrorism either in the United Kingdom or abroad.

  +-(1010)  

+-

     I asked the government a number of months ago to introduce and enact legislation that would make it hard for terrorists and their supporters to get here and stay here, and furthermore to make it impossible for terrorist supporters to raise money while here. I also asked that for those caught supporting terrorist activities in any way, shape or form, here or abroad, criminal charges with severe penalties be handed down.

    The solicitor general rejected such recommendations. He did so despite knowing from intelligence sources that terrorist groups from around the world were and are extremely active in Canada, raising funds for bomb plots or other violent activities.

    As stated earlier, we are formally asking that the government immediately consider the question of anti-terrorism legislation similar in principle to the United Kingdom's terrorism act 2000. That legislation provides for the following: first, the naming of all known international terrorist organizations operating in Canada; second, a complete ban on fundraising activities in support of terrorism and provisions for the seizure of assets belonging to terrorists or terrorist organizations; third, the immediate ratification of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism; fourth, the creation of specific crimes for engaging in terrorist activities in Canada or inciting terrorist activities abroad; fifth, the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences; sixth, the detention and deportation to their country of origin of people illegally in Canada or who are failed refugee claimants who have been linked to terrorist organizations.

    As lead critic for the official opposition, I am asking the solicitor general to effectively equip, adequately fund and sufficiently empower CSIS and the RCMP. We must ensure that our first lines of defence against terrorism can do their job, including all emerging threats. What types of threats? There is perhaps the threat of anthrax, the threat of a potentially deadly biological weapon for terrorists, which could decimate the population of any metropolitan area. Yet despite general security warnings in 1998 regarding the possibility of anthrax being brought into this country, the government has done nothing to prepare us against a potential attack.

    As recommended by an expert from John Hopkins University, we should be stockpiling drugs and vaccines and developing and distributing rapid tests for agents and we should come up with effective ways of isolating infected people.

    On September 11, the world received a huge wake up call, one so powerful that this government had no choice but to react. There have been other times. There have been other attempts to provide wake up calls. CSIS has tried in the past to wake a slumbering government, but the government has reached out and hit the snooze button.

    CSIS tried to warn the government and provide a wake up call in regard to the growing threat of terrorism, the more sophisticated acts of terrorism; however, the government hit the snooze button. CSIS tried to wake up the government in regard to its caseload, how it did not have enough resources and how it has to risk manage the threats, but the government hit the snooze button.

    The Canadian Alliance has tried to wake a slumbering government in regard to bills, criminal acts and terrorism. In disdain the government has reached out and hit the snooze button.

    The RCMP tried to provide a wake up call when they said 8,000 Tamil tigers were living and training in Toronto. The government reached out and hit the snooze button, except of course for our finance minister who happened to be out for lunch with them at the time.

    The RCMP also complained about the crippling effects of few dollars and limited resources, but the government hit the snooze button.

    I will concede that this government is now awake, but the question remains, will the government remain awake or will it roll over and go back to sleep?

    Is this really the end of the age of complacency? Time will tell.

  +-(1015)  

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    Mr. Dennis Mills (Toronto—Danforth, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would like to acknowledge the opposition's subject choice for the debate today. I personally support the motion that we review all the things we have done in the House in the area of anti-terrorism legislation, et cetera. With so many members wanting to speak today I will need to make my three points in a short period.

    First, I support the Prime Minister. Whatever we do must be in keeping with the value system of the country and especially to be ultra sensitive to the multicultural reality. When we make our recommendations for CSIS and the RCMP, we must make sure that in their future staffing they will reflect the multicultural reality of our country because that could be a good resource for exchanging information with other countries involved in terrorist activities as well as our own.

    I also want to acknowledge the right hon. leader of the Conservative Party who yesterday said that the debate was an exercise for all parliamentarians. I totally support that.

    I believe we as members of parliament should not just listen to our trusted officials, whether they be with immigration, CSIS, the RCMP or even experts with our embassies abroad. I know nothing about this issue but we know that countries have been experiencing this problem over the last many years. We have been sheltered.

    I believe elected MPs have a unique opportunity to develop good anti-terrorist legislation. My view is that we should visit our elected counterparts in the countries that have been experiencing terrorism for many years. We should learn from their experience and get their ideas so that whatever legislation we develop has the benefit of world expertise. Those are my comments to the opposition.

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    Mr. Kevin Sorenson: Mr. Speaker, now is the time when we are called to action. Now is not the time to begin a committee structure and do a lot of travelling. Yes, we do need to look at what other countries have done. We need to emulate countries that have provided anti-terrorism, such as the one that is already there in the United Kingdom. The United States also has an anti-terrorist bill. I think it brought in an effective ant- terrorism and capital punishment bill in 1996.

    We need to look at all countries that are dealing with terrorism but we also need to let the world know today that we stand shoulder to shoulder with our American friends and closest neighbour, and that we will do everything within our power to stand beside them.

    Our concern is the levels of CSIS and the RCMP. Since 1997 I think we have lost 2,200 RCMP personnel. We have lost $175 million in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police budget and $133 million from CSIS.

    When we talk about commitment, the Canadian public is looking at the government and asking how big a commitment it has against terrorism acts when every budget is being cut.

    Now is the time for the solicitor general to ask the government to put in place the appropriate measures to fund CSIS and the RCMP and to be sure that our first and frontline of defence is prepared.

  +-(1020)  

[Translation]

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    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday this House presented a united front. All MPs deplored the terrible attacks against innocent victims that took place a week ago.

    We were united in our grief. We were united in our compassion. We were united in our desire to solve the problem. Now, however, we must move from those emotions that united us to concrete policies that will help us to move on.

    We will still be united as far as some of those solutions are concerned, but others will find us less so.

[English]

    One thing in which there was unanimity was that the events of September 11 have changed the world and now we must ask the tough question of how these tragic events must change our laws and our policies.

    The acts that launched this debate were committed in the United States. The perpetrators may have come from many countries in the Middle East and Europe and their deeds may yet lead to Canadian forces fighting overseas, but the war against terrorism begins here at home in Canada.

    After last week, even a country like Canada, which is used to thinking of itself as a peaceful and non-violent country, finds itself at risk. Of course, we are not immune. We did have the tragic Air India bombing which killed 329 people. That originated in Canada. Thankfully we have not often seen lethal acts of terrorism on our soil.

    However other countries have not been so fortunate. They have had the bitter experience of dealing with terrorism and have been forced to modernize their laws to deal with these threats. Two countries with very similar democratic values to our own, the United Kingdom and the United States, have already brought in comprehensive anti-terrorism legislation. While the events of last week show strong laws alone will not in all cases stop determined terrorists, they can at least give to police, prosecutors, border security and others the tools they need to fight terrorists and terrorism. We must examine and learn from the experience of our British and American allies and see where their legislation could possibly be a model for our own.

    In 1996 in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing, the United States did bring in comprehensive anti-terrorism legislation in the form of the anti-terrorism and effective death penalty act which was signed by President Clinton.

    In Canada the interdepartmental intelligence policy group reviewed the U.S. legislation in 1997 and made a conclusion saying that the need for such a scheme could not be established.

    In 2000 the United Kingdom, which already had strong anti-terrorism legislation on the books at that time to deal with the threat of the IRA, brought in new sweeping anti-terrorism legislation to deal with international terrorism that could possibly be operating within the U.K.

    The official opposition has pointed to the British terrorism act of 2000 as an example of the kind of effective legislation that Canada should look at, but so far the government has not chosen to emulate the example of our British friends and our allies. The U.S. and the U.K. governments under the Clinton Democrats and Tony Blair's Labour Party felt that it was possible to bring in comprehensive terrorism legislation without endangering the democratic values that are important to us.

    We believe that Canada can do no less. We want to support our Prime Minister and the government in terms of this type of legislation and approach. This is not about posturing politically. This is about being able to stand tall together and protect our citizens and answer their concerns and their cry for security. This is one of a number of areas. Security of markets is something we will also be pursuing but we need to look at this in terms of security of the person and the people of Canada.

    Therefore it must contain a comprehensive definition of terrorism. We need a way to distinguish between genuine acts of terrorism, whether committed at home or abroad, from political protest and dissent. Those are two very clearly different things. While the CSIS act does not have a definition of terrorism, we do need a comprehensive definition of terrorism and specific charges associated with it in the Criminal Code of Canada.

    Second, effective anti-terrorism legislation must name and outlaw specific terror groups. Both the U.S. and the U.K. legislation do this. It also must take steps to not just outlaw the organizations but to ban fundraising or other support activities. It is not enough just to take away the charitable status, we must ban fundraising for these activities. The government so far has avoided this approach of naming and banning specific terrorist organizations and their front groups. I believe it is the will and the hope of the government to do that. I am optimistic.

    In reply to questions from the official opposition on fundraising activities of various groups, we did not always receive favourable responses. We even had a response that CSIS does not provide a list of terrorist organizations and it does not provide a list of people or other organizations that it is targeting. Clearly that needs to change. The solicitor general has implied that the strength of Canadian law and policy is to not name those groups. In fact I think we would all agree now that it is a weakness.

    The U.K. and the U.S. legislation provide specific lists of terror groups and outlaws their activities. We must do the same.

  +-(1025)  

    In 1998 CSIS stated that some 50 international terrorist groups were operating in Canada and that the names included some of the most deadly enemies of peace and democracy in the world today.

    Some of the groups that were banned by the British terrorism act of 2000 and are known to have operated and do operate in Canada, according to CSIS documents, are the Babbar Khalsa, the International Sikh Youth Federation, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil , Hisbullah, Hamas, the Kurdistan Workers Party and the Irish Republican Army.

    The Kelly report, a recent report from the Senate special committee, stated in 1999 that “Canada is a primary venue of opportunity to support, plan, or mount terrorist attacks”. Contrary to what some people wishfully think, what happened in New York can happen here, perhaps even worse. Attacks like the New York attack could be planned and orchestrated from Canadian soil by groups attempting to take advantage of the weaknesses of our legislation.

    Canada signed the UN International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism of 1999. We need to do more. We need to take extra steps in that regard.

[Translation]

    Bill C-16, which is before parliament, would make it possible to strip of their not for profit status certain groups that are financing terrorism. This is, of course, a good start, but we are still very far from true anti-terrorism legislation that would ban fundraising in support of terrorism in Canada and would eliminate the presence of such groups within this country.

[English]

    Anti-terrorism legislation should not simply ban terrorist fundraising but all kinds of support activities. That would include training activities, recruiting, propaganda or communications. Terrorist groups should not be permitted to use Canadian Internet web servers to promote their cause or communicate through their supporters.

    The British legislation calls and creates new crimes for members of terrorist groups. We need to look at these areas.

    We must also change our laws regarding the extradition of suspected terrorists. Terrorism is a world without borders. We cannot let Canada become a safe haven for those who would rely on the humanitarian compassion of Canadian laws and yet avoid justice in their own countries or the countries where they have committed crimes.

    If a government like the United States seeks people accused of terrorism in Canada we must be convinced that there is reasonable evidence. This is a very important point and I know some of our colleagues in the House have some sensitivity on this. If there is reasonable evidence, we should turn terrorists over regardless of the fact that they may face a penalty in that country, for instance in the United States, that would not apply here. That move would require a change in Canadian law to send a signal to terrorists that they cannot take advantage of Canada to avoid facing justice for their crimes.

    One can only imagine the outrage if one of the perpetrators of the acts in New York and Washington, perhaps even the criminal mastermind who so carefully co-ordinated the flight schedules of the terrorists, found his way to Canada and we found ourselves unable to extradite such a person to the United States to face justice. Canadian law must address this possibility now because Canadian citizens will demand it.

    These are only some of the areas that we must address. Over the weeks ahead the official opposition will continue to ask for the kinds of changes that we feel are necessary to restore confidence to our citizens, confidence in safety and security, confidence in the markets and confidence that we continue to grow both socially and economically. However the one thing we cannot afford is complacency. As Edmund Burke famously said “all that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”.

    Changing laws alone will not stop terrorism. We are legislators and drafting and changing laws is what we do. Let it not be said after the next horrific terrorist incident that it happened because the good men and good women of the House chose to do nothing.

    Mr. Speaker, at this point I would propose an amendment to the motion. I move:

    That the motion be amended

a) by replacing the words “to introduce” with the words “to send to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights no later than November 1, 2001 draft” and

b) by adding after the last line “and that the committee report back to the House no later than February 12, 2002”.

  +-(1030)  

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    Mr. Dennis Mills: Mr. Speaker, I return to my earlier question to the leader of Her Majesty's loyal opposition. With respect, I did not feel the answer was clear.

    I support the review of the RCMP and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service. They obviously will need more resources, more staff and more agents. Does the Canadian Alliance support the notion that the agencies should reflect the multicultural reality of the country as they rebuild themselves?

    To be honest, we have been out of touch with the terrorist activities which have been happening in many countries around the world for many years. Those countries, our elected counterparts, could be a tremendous source of information that would allow us to craft good legislation here.

    Would the Leader of the Opposition and his party support the notion that elected members of parliament should visit our counterparts in those countries to make sure that whatever legislation we craft here has the benefit of their years of experience of seeing terrorism on a firsthand basis?

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    Mr. Stockwell Day: Mr. Speaker, those are two important questions. First, regarding whether the hiring practices of CSIS and the RCMP should reflect the ethnic and cultural diversity of our country, it is more important to respect that than to reflect it. The Canadian Alliance does not agree with policies of blind affirmative action. It has not been proven to lead to the best performance in any area, venture or enterprise.

    If there are sound reasons, and there are, we would want to make sure there were members of various groups within CSIS and the RCMP that understood the various components of Canadian society. That would make the operation a better one.

    However we do not support strictly conforming to what have been shown to be failed policies of blind affirmative action. That has proven to be counterproductive. We want this to be the most productive means possible. Engaging people from across the spectrum is a way of doing that.

    Second, on the question of visiting other jurisdictions, we want to make very clear that we want action in this regard. When we agreed to look at the wording of the original motion and add that it should go to a committee and a draft should be prepared, we agreed because we sensed there was goodwill from all members of the House to have legislation such as this.

    However we are careful to acknowledge that when the public sees members of parliament send something to committee it is often the death knell of that initiative. The public is more than aware of the glacier-like speed of government.

    We are concerned about that. That is why the dates are there. There must be a date, which we have affixed to this amendment, outlining the various stages at which the bill must move along. If there is to be travel to other jurisdictions to gain expertise, that is fine. However it must be within the dates we have laid out within the amendment.

  +-(1035)  

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    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the learned Leader of the Opposition. The definition of terrorism is in many instances nebulous. In Northern Ireland the political wing of a terrorist organization, Sinn Fein on behalf of the IRA, takes part in the political process. This is something I am sure we will need to delve into in great detail when we examine the question at the committee level.

    Does the Leader of the Opposition have any insights he could share with us on this point? How can we define terrorism in a suitably precise way? Examples in recent days go beyond the pale, but certain activities in the world operate close to the edge of what we in North America would define as terrorism.

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    Mr. Stockwell Day: Mr. Speaker, the member for Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough raises a key concern. One of the challenges and dilemmas facing legislators continually is the question of security. We know, and it has been stated by others who have drafted legislation that has stood for 200 years, that any time people are willing to give up freedom for security they risk losing both. That is why we must be careful to make sure our citizens are secure but that freedom is respected.

    That is why defining terrorism is so important. There are groups that will protest government, and so they should. We must be careful that we do not tread into areas of justified protest, even at times loud or uncomfortable protest that we do not like.

    I will not speculate today on what the definition should be, but it should contemplate the concerns raised by the member that we do not intrude into areas of freedom. Groups to whom we may be opposed in principle or in politics must be allowed the freedom to clearly do what they do.

    Terrorism can and must be defined in a way that is acceptable. These are some of the variations we will need to look at carefully to protect our freedoms.

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    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, one week ago today individuals gathered around television sets across the country and around the world to watch the unfolding of unspeakable horror. We drew a collective breath knowing that the world was an altered place. I share with all Canadians sorrow for the families directly touched by the attacks.

  +-(1040)  

[Translation]

    My compassion and my prayers go first of all to those who have been directly affected by these acts of terrorism.

[English]

    As well, I share with many a sense of loss for the world we took for granted before last Tuesday. Concern for national security, for freedom and for peace are now foremost in our minds.

    In the days since and the days to come our thoughts will move between sorrow, despair, anger and worry. I sincerely hope that from all this we will be able to build, in partnership with other nations, a stronger world community. We must take further steps to fight terrorism so that those who commit these crimes understand that we will not be paralyzed by their acts of aggression.

    Responding to this tragedy is a worldwide challenge and the government is prepared to do its part in meeting it. The safety and protection of all people is of the highest priority to the government.

    As Canada's Attorney General and Minister of Justice, I pledge to lend my full co-operation to the attorney general of the United States, my colleague John Ashcroft, and to provide the support necessary to further the efforts of the world community to confront terrorism.

    Like the United States, we too share a commitment to freedom and the rule of law and are committed to overcome the efforts of terrorists to weaken these pillars of democracy.

    To date Canada has been reasonably secure from terrorist incidents within its borders, but we have not been immune. It is important that we have effective tools in place to keep Canada free of terrorists and that we have mechanisms for co-operating with our closest neighbour, the United States, and the larger international community.

[Translation]

    Accordingly, Canada has always worked with the United States and the international community to develop international agreements and conventions, as well as developing its own domestic anti-terrorist legislation.

[English]

    At the international level Canada has a long history of working in concert with the international community to pursue initiatives that reduce the threat posed by international terrorists. Canada has signed all 12 UN counterterrorist agreements. Ten of these have already been ratified, including those that target unlawful acts committed on aircraft, unlawful acts of violence at airports serving civil aviation, actions threatening civil aviation and the unlawful seizure of aircraft.

    We are currently completing the ratification process of the remaining two agreements, the convention for the suppression of terrorist bombings and the international convention for the suppression of financing of terrorism.

    The convention for the suppression of terrorist bombings covers new offences relating to the targeting of public places, transportation systems, government or infrastructure facilities with explosives or other lethal devices. It will require states that have ratified the convention to criminalize these offences when committed outside their borders and prosecute or extradite offenders found within their borders.

    The international convention for the suppression of financing of terrorism is intended to cut terrorists off from the financial support that permits them to continue to operate. The convention requires state parties to make it a crime for a person to provide or collect funds with the knowledge that they might be used in terrorist activity.

    Our signature on these conventions is a commitment by Canada to move forward to their ratification. I anticipate bringing implementing legislation before parliament that will allow us to prosecute these offences in Canada.

    In addition to participating in the development of international protections against terrorism Canada has undertaken several bilateral commitments with the United States.

    These include the Canada-U.S. cross-border crime forum which furthers co-operation and information sharing between Canada and the United States in the fight against transnational crime; the U.S.-Canadian Consultative Group on Counterterrorism which furthers collaboration between agencies and departments of both governments that are involved in the fight against terrorism; and the Canada-U.S. mutual legal assistance treaty and the Canada-U.S.A. extradition treaty which facilitate our ability to work together to fight terrorism.

    There are also several domestic laws under my jurisdiction that are relevant to our counterterrorist policies. Hijacking, murder and other acts of violence can be prosecuted under the criminal code. As well, the criminal code has been amended to give Canadian courts the jurisdiction to try terrorist crimes committed abroad to ensure that terrorists are denied sanctuary and brought to justice after the commission of a terrorist crime.

    The criminal code already provides powers to law enforcement officers to assist them in protecting and keeping the peace. I have also introduced organized crime legislation, Bill C-24, which is now in the Senate. Provisions in the bill would allow designated law enforcement officers investigating terrorist activity to undertake certain activities that would otherwise be illegal. The measures have been carefully crafted to protect us against and prevent organized crime while at the same time maintaining law enforcement accountability.

    Rapidly evolving technologies are being used to shield unlawful activities including terrorism. Although current provisions of the criminal code provide grounds to lawfully intercept communications and to search and seize information in computer systems, new and constantly changing technologies challenge our capacity to do so. We are working to develop better methods to counter the use of information technologies that facilitate and assist terrorist activity.

    In addition to these criminal code protections it is my intention to propose amendments to the Official Secrets Act. These will address intelligence gathering activities by foreign states and terrorist groups that could threaten Canada's essential infrastructures.

    As well, I am planning to propose amendments to the Canada Evidence Act to better govern the use and protection of information that would be injurious to national security were it disclosed. These amendments would also protect information given to us in confidence by our allies.

  +-(1045)  

    As we search for effective means of security, privacy issues will be important. My department has been reviewing the privacy regime in Canada and in the course of this work the balance between the privacy and safety of Canadians will be a key consideration.

    The enormity of last Tuesday's tragedy provokes extreme emotions in all of us. We cannot let terrorism and the fear of future terrorist acts justify casting aside the values upon which our great country has been built and from which it derives so much of its strength and richness, democracy, freedom of belief, freedom of political opinion, justice and equality.

    As we respond to last Tuesday's attack and as we take measures to ensure our safety and keep Canada free from terrorists we must remember not to blame. As the Prime Minister said, we must remember that we are in a struggle against terrorism, not against any one community or faith. We must reaffirm Canada's fundamental values, the equality of every race, every colour, every religion and every ethnic origin.

    Canada's strength lies in its ability to accept difference and to recognize our common humanity. Let us continue to nurture our respect for justice and respect for diversity. We have always governed ourselves by the rule of law, abiding by its even-handed guidance even in the face of brutal actions that belie all that civil society stands for. We must continue to do so.

    The rule of law reflected in the laws and conventions I have referred to today is a fundamental part of the framework that will bring the perpetrators of terrorism to justice and preserve the values for which we all stand.

    I should have mentioned at the beginning that I am splitting my time with the Parliamentary Secretary to the Solicitor General of Canada.

  +-(1050)  

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    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have a short question for the Minister of Justice. If the evidence pointed that a terrorist, not in this past terrorist attack, carried out an attack in the United States where there were multiple deaths and where the mastermind of such an activity had found safe haven in Canada, would the Minister of Justice extradite that mastermind of terrorism back to the United States on a capital offence?

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    Hon. Anne McLellan: Mr. Speaker, I do not accept the reference to Canada as a safe haven. By working domestically and with our allies across the world, we have ensured that no country is a safe haven for those who would commit such heinous acts.

    As the hon. member is probably aware, extradition requires a request. If that request is made, procedures as outlined in the Extradition Act would be followed. I presume the hon. member is referring to the Supreme Court of Canada's decision in Burns and Rafay earlier this year.

    The Supreme Court of Canada made it absolutely clear that the Minister of Justice does not have to seek assurances from a requesting state in exceptional circumstances.

    It is my obligation on a case by case basis to determine whether exceptional circumstances exist and therefore assurance is not sought.

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    Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, one of the problems in combating terrorism is that our security service, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service or CSIS, is restricted to operations within Canada.

    I noted during the minister's remarks that she indicated she was willing to look at a number of changes. Is the minister contemplating expanding or lifting the restriction on CSIS so that it can actually operate on foreign soil to identify terrorists and prevent them from coming to Canada, rather than worry about trying to identify them once they are here and then have to extradite them?

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    Hon. Anne McLellan: Mr. Speaker, in a general sense we are always working either at home or abroad with our allies to prevent the mobility of terrorists and to prevent them from having access to our country. The specific question he asks is within the jurisdiction of my colleague, the solicitor general. I am not responsible for CSIS and therefore it would be inappropriate for me to address the specific question.

    However I can reassert and reassure him of our commitment to attempt to do everything possible to ensure terrorists do not reach the shores of our country. I will certainly take his specific question up with my colleague, the solicitor general, who would be able to respond to the question more directly.

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    Mr. Dick Proctor (Palliser, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I listened with care to the minister's remarks, but what I did not hear from her is whether or not she and her party are supporting the bill today. Could she help us on that?

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    Hon. Anne McLellan: Mr. Speaker, there is no bill before the House.

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, perhaps we could rephrase the question to the minister. Could the minister tell us whether the government is supporting the opposition day motion put forward by the Canadian Alliance?

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    Hon. Anne McLellan: Mr. Speaker, the position of the government will become clear later today. It is quite clear that the government House leader, in his discussions with other House leaders, has made known some of our concerns with the motion as presently drafted.

    We have sought the co-operation of opposition parties to determine whether we could reach agreement on a motion that everyone in the House could support wholeheartedly and unanimously.

    I come back to the point that it is important to ensure that the action we take is effective and fair. It must be effective in meeting the challenges presented by the horrors of last week and fair in the context of this country's commitment to principles such as democracy and the rule of law.

    Therefore I do not think this is a time in which we should be calling for quick action unless we have had the opportunity to understand the consequences of that action and whether such action will be effective.

  +-(1055)  

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    Mr. Lynn Myers (Parliamentary Secretary to the Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I take this opportunity to provide the House with further perspective on the kinds of investments Canada has made and will continue to make with its many partners to combat terrorism.

    The motion before us today poses some good questions. I would agree it is fitting that the House take a very careful and close look at the reality of terrorism today. We need a serious and indepth discussion about what more can be done to make sure we are doing all that we can to protect Canadians and Canadian interests from terrorists.

    What more can be done to ensure that Canada stands with its friend and neighbour, the United States of America, in this fight? What more can be done to encourage the creation of an international net so tight that no terrorist can escape?

    In this new millennium the world community is witnessing great turmoil including the increasing use of violence for political and ideological purposes. As a government and a nation we understand that our domestic safety and well-being are very much tied to global security. Our situation is shared by all western democracies. Our wealth, values, institutions, rights and freedoms make us an attractive venue for terrorist support activities.

    Today we are not alone in our resolve to redouble our efforts to take the kind of action that will preserve our way of life: the values, beliefs, hopes and dreams of free and civilized people wherever they live. Our shared commitment remains to strengthen co-operation and action at the domestic and international levels, and to better anticipate, defend against and defeat terrorist threats.

    Together through our solidarity we will prevail in the war against terrorism. We will prevail because we have in place the institutions, the expertise and the strong international working relationships we will need to continue to muster in the days, weeks and months to come.

    As the Prime Minister said in the House yesterday, we have the patience and resolve to deal effectively with the threat of terrorism through a measured and sustained response. Let us make no mistake. We will prevail.

    We know Canadians are up to the task. We have seen this so profoundly in the last week through the acts of compassion of ordinary Canadians across this great country of ours, in the words of unity and support from all Canada's leaders, and in the continuing work of Canadian men and women whose jobs are devoted to upholding public safety and security.

    Canada's national security structure has many components involving many departments, agencies and levels of government, each with a critical partnership role to play.

    Federal efforts to counter terrorism draw on the resources of the portfolio of the Solicitor General of Canada through the national security directorate, the expertise and advice of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the broader federal counterterrorist community.

    Some of the key partners within this group include the departments of foreign affairs and international trade, justice, citizenship and immigration, national defence, health, transport, and the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency.

    It is the Department of the Solicitor General that is responsible for the national counterterrorism plan which is practised through operational exercises conducted as part of the ongoing readiness program managed by that department. Through its emphasis on co-operation and co-operative action to ensure readiness to new and emerging threats, the operational readiness program is an important tool for creating broad based understanding and engagement in our national counterterrorism arrangements, and for ensuring they are as effective as they possibly can be.

    In practical terms this means working at the local level with police, firefighters and emergency health services, and at the international level with our allies through exchanging intelligence and tactical information to improve our domestic preparedness and response capability.

    The Government of Canada continues to develop and implement a range of tough new measures that will make it more difficult for terrorists to use Canada as a base for terrorist activities.

  +-(1100)  

    Among the investments in Canada's ability to combat terrorism is important proposed legislation known as Bill C-16, which contains a broadly based and integral part aimed at the suppression of terrorism. The bill proposes measures to deny charitable status to those groups that might seek to abuse Canada's charities registration system by collecting funds to support terrorist organizations and their activities around the world.

    Implementing these measures will allow Canada to fulfill its commitments toward implementing an international convention aimed at cutting off sources of funding in support of terrorist activities.

    Earlier this year the federal government established the Office of Critical Infrastructure Protection and Emergency Preparedness. This was done to develop and implement a comprehensive approach to protecting Canada's critical infrastructure in both its physical and cyber dimensions regardless of the source of threats and vulnerabilities. This new entity will play an important ongoing role in Canada's national security network and will be an important partner in international efforts.

    Just last year the federal government allocated $1.5 billion to the RCMP, CSIS, CIC, and other Canadian security and safety partners to ensure that they continue to have the tools required to do their jobs effectively.

    Let me now turn to collaborative partnerships with the United States of America. Canada is committed to taking a leadership role in strengthening international co-operation aimed at preventing terrorist acts. This is most clearly reflected in the strong alliance between Canada and the United States in the fight against international terrorism.

    RCMP, CSIS, local police, customs, immigration and transport officials work daily, hourly and by the minute with their American counterparts each and every day around the clock. They are dedicated to ensuring the safety and security of all our citizens.

    Joint investigations and operations and the sharing of information and intelligence characterize the unique and strongly collaborative relationship between our two great countries. These activities are firmly rooted in continued dialogue and co-ordinated action at the policy and operational levels by national law enforcement, intelligence, security, customs and immigration agencies.

    Canada and the United States have and will continue to have a long record of successful collaboration in combating terrorism and transnational crime.

    There are a number of practical examples of partnership initiatives that have contributed to the success: for example, the shared border accord which encourages the flow of people and goods across the border while protecting the health and safety of Canadians and Americans alike and, for example, the cross-border crime forum, an achievement unique in the world for its success in furthering co-operation and information sharing between our two countries in the fight against transnational crime and other emerging cross-border security issues.

    In his visit to Canada this past summer to take part in this annual event, American Attorney General John Ashcroft underlined his country's gratitude for the continuing collaboration of the Canadian authorities in the fight against terrorism.

    The bilateral consultative group on countererrorism also brings together agencies and departments in both governments engaged in the fight against terrorism to enhance collaboration, co-operation and information sharing.

    The Government of Canada has pledged its complete co-operation with the United States and other international authorities in finding those responsible for these horrific attacks and strengthening international security co-operation to prevent such a catastrophe from ever happening again.

    This is a complex, far reaching investigation that reaches into virtually every corner of the globe. At all levels Canadian officials are following up with their American and international counterparts to repeat the Prime Minister's sincere offer with respect to assistance and a pledge for complete co-operation with authorities investigating these unspeakable crimes.

    Canadians can rest assured that in all we do and in all we will do in the days and weeks to come, we will continue to keep in mind our ultimate priority to ensure the safety and security of the Canadian public.

  +-(1105)  

    At this point I would like to seek unanimous consent to withdraw the motion as stated and replace it with a motion that the House mandate the Standing Committee of Justice and Human Rights to study the matter of anti-terrorism legislation and report to the House no later than February 12, 2002.

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    The Deputy Speaker: Does the Parliamentary Secretary to the Solicitor General have unanimous consent of the House to propose the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

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    Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I want to ask a specific question following up on one of the responses of the Minister of Justice. She indicated that the government had some specific problems with one of the six points made in the motion.

    Could the parliamentary secretary, in the interest of open debate, indicate what specific problems the government has with the motion as stated? I think he would further the debate if he were to do that.

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    Mr. Lynn Myers: Mr. Speaker, I repeat what I said at the outset of my speech. The motion as proposed raises some very important questions at which the House needs to look and needs to debate. That is precisely what we will do today.

    It behooves us to listen to all the speakers before we finally come to a conclusion on where we are going on this matter. It seems to me with the government's resolve it is very clear that we will continue to work with our American counterparts. We will continue to gather the intelligence necessary. We will continue to assist in every way possible to ensure that the perpetrators of this horrific crime are brought to justice but, more important, that it will never ever happen again.

    We need to work in a concerted, careful, co-ordinated and collaborative way. That has been the position very clearly of not only the Prime Minister but the Government of Canada. That is our position and will continue to be so.

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    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the parliamentary secretary with respect to one element of the opposition motion.

    The suggestion that there should be the creation of specific crimes for engaging in terrorism is one that many of us find compelling. In the current criminal code there are offences that would apply. It would have application for murder and for transportation of explosive devices, all of that. The member who engaged in police activity would know that as well.

    Given the specific offensive nature of terrorism, particularly in light of the horrific events of last week, would the member not agree that delving into the definition of terrorism and the creation of a specific offence would act as a greater deterrent for those who chose to engage in this type of nefarious activity?

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    Mr. Lynn Myers: Mr. Speaker, in light of what took place on Tuesday of last week, it seems to me we now have the opportunity as a country and as a government working with the opposition parties to take a look at precisely the kinds of matters the member is raising.

    This is exactly the kind of work the great Parliament of Canada is prepared to undertake in the next little while to take a look at all the efforts that need to be done, not only in terms of helping our American counterparts but ensuring that nothing like what took place in New York and Washington last Tuesday can ever happen here.

    As I pointed out in my speech, and as the Minister of Justice alluded to as well, we need to and we will as a government redouble our efforts to ensure that at the end the day, with the process and with the co-operation of all members of the House and because of the importance of this matter, we put in place the kinds of measures, the kinds of tools and the kinds of resources required given the new reality, which unfortunately is not a pleasant one.

  +-(1110)  

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    Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the motion lists six specific items. When the government tables legislation I am sure it would be free to add even more, but it would have to include the minimum of these six.

    It includes things like naming all known international terrorist organizations operating in Canada. It includes a complete ban on fundraising activities in support of terrorism, not just taking away their charitable status but actually banning the fundraising. It includes immediate ratification of the stated international convention. It also includes three more.

    In a follow up to the question that my colleague asked just moments ago, would the member from the Liberal Party who just spoke enlighten us on which of these six items the Liberal side specifically objects to that would cause it to contemplate not voting in favour of this very good motion?

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    Mr. Lynn Myers: Mr. Speaker, over the course of this day we will be carefully reviewing all the comments of the members who are proposing to speak. The essence of debating in this great Chamber is to listen carefully to try to understand the points brought to the debate on the floor of the House of Commons.

    At the end of the day the position of the government will be made clear. In the meantime we will assess, monitor and take a look at the kinds of comments being made and at the appropriate time we will make our decision.

[Translation]

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    Ms. Pierrette Venne (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, Ind. BQ): Mr. Speaker, first of all, I seek the unanimous consent of the House to have the following words deleted from the motion:

—the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences;

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    The Deputy Speaker: Does the hon. member have the unanimous consent of the House?

    Some hon. members: Agreed

    Some hon. members: No.

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    Ms. Pierrette Venne: Mr. Speaker, I must tell you that, from where I sit, I did not hear. Did I obtain unanimous consent?

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    The Deputy Speaker: I am sorry, but unanimous consent was not given.

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    Ms. Pierrette Venne: Mr. Speaker, I would like to inform you that I will share my time with the member for Laval Centre, our party's citizenship and immigration critic.

    It is therefore with sadness that I rise to speak today in this debate on terrorism, following the attacks against the American nation and against the entire system of western values.

    I will not go back over the adjectives that might be used to describe such acts. They have almost all been used and, in any case, there are no words powerful enough to express my utter repugnance at actions that are beyond my comprehension in a land of democracy and freedom.

    When we realize just how shaken the U.S. was last Tuesday as a world power in defence and national security, it makes us stop and think about Canada's ability to fight terrorism effectively with the means currently at its disposal.

    First off, our borders have holes in them. Doubtless, the length of the country does not help border control. However, Canada's policy of openness to refugees and its very minimal control over the movements of individuals make them even less secure.

    With questions such as “Where have you come from? How long have you been gone? and What are you bringing back?”, customs officials are clearly far more concerned with the movement of alcohol and cigarettes than with identifying criminals and terrorists.

    At the moment, the main concern of the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency is to keep tabs on the extra mickey that slips across the border, costing the government a few dollars in lost taxes.

    The Canada Customs and Revenue Agency must change its strategy and focus first and foremost on increasing surveillance on nationals from countries known to be particularly tolerant of terrorism.

    In addition, this does not mean doing ill-timed searches. Discretion is the watchword. In other terms, controls must be tightened, but we must avoid becoming xenophobic and paranoid.

    Moreover, as the president of CP said on Friday in Calgary:

    For the United States to keep an open border with us, it must have confidence in our ability to maintain the security of our borders.

    I would draw your attention, as well, to certain passages in the annual report of CSIS for the year 2000, which caught my attention particularly. The report provides at page 7 that, and I quote:

    Canada belongs to international institutions and bodies, participates in peacekeeping missions and hosts major international events, all of which are potential targets for terrorists.

    Further on, the report states:

—Canadians, now more than ever, are potential victims and Canada a potential venue for terrorist attacks.

    Both of these excerpts are of particular interest, for different reasons, if only when one considers the fact that the next G-8 summit will take place from June 26 to 28, 2002, in Kananaskis, Alberta. Clearly it is imperative that we act and provide for means to ensure the protection of both participants and residents during this summit.

    This threat is real and cannot be taken lightly. We know that there are terrorist groups planning certain terrorist acts from Canada, and the fact that they are already here makes it that much easier for them to take action.

    Pages 7 and 8 of the report read:

    Individuals with links to international terrorist groups use Canada primarily as a base from which to orchestrate terrorist activities abroad.

    It is not hard to guess why terrorist groups choose to live in Canada to plan their acts. The reason is quite simple. There is no anti-terrorist legislation in Canada. They know that as long as they are on Canadian soil they can act with impunity.

    A good example of this is the case of Ahmed Ressam, who organized an attack on the Los Angeles airport while living in Canada without ever being inconvenienced by Canadian authorities. As a matter of fact, Ressam only started having problems when he reached American soil.

    Not only has the Government of Canada demonstrated that it is unable to protect its citizens and its territory, but Canada was also severely criticized by U.S. authorities, who stated that we constituted a threat to their national security.

  +-(1115)  

    This is not surprising, when one considers that the only coercive measure relating to terrorism currently in effect in Canada is the deportation of foreign nationals connected to terrorist activities under the Immigration Act.

    Moreover, this measure raises another problem. In the Suresh case, which the Supreme Court of Canada heard this past May 22, but on which it has not yet brought down its decision, the court is confronted with the following dilemma. Suresh being suspected of fundraising for a Sri Lankan terrorist group, the preservation of national security would require him to be deported to his country of origin.

    However, since he has made a refugee claim involving fear of torture, returning a refugee in danger of mistreatment to his country would be contrary to all of the principles of human rights defended by the United Nations.

    When the supreme court reaches its decision, it will have to decide whether to move us down to the lowest United Nations ranking as far as the protection of human rights is concerned, or to send the message that Canada constitutes a refuge for all the undesirables of the world.

    With anti-terrorist legislation such as that passed in the United Kingdom—this is just an example—or with a criminal code that deals with terrorist activities, such as the one adopted in France, Suresh could have been punished in Canada. This would have been done in the respect of human rights, while also indicating to terrorists that we are not a haven for them.

    With such examples, the Bloc Quebecois feels perfectly right in asking the federal government to introduce anti-terrorist legislation that would, of course, respect our fundamental values. Moreover, contrary to what some believe, a more aggressive fight against terrorism does not mean that rights and freedoms would necessarily be affected. For example, the fact that we have a criminal code and that we fight crime does not make Canada a police state.

    Of course, when we talk about acts that have teeth and mete out appropriate punishment, we are not talking about something as meaningless, from both a practical and legal point of view, as Bill C-16. It might be useful to remind hon. members that this bill, the object of which is to prevent the funding from Canada of terrorist groups, simply seeks to strip charities taking part in the funding of terrorist activities of their status as registered charities.

    When we are confronted with people who, in order to promote an ideology, take pride in sacrificing their own lives by taking thousands of innocent lives, can we seriously believe that the mere fact of preventing an organization from issuing tax receipts can be effective in the fight against terrorism? Once again, the government is much more concerned about tax issues than about safety issues.

    Since I have very little time left, I will simply say that the Bloc Quebecois cannot agree with the Alliance motion, because in its current wording that motion does not respect the fundamental values advocated by the Bloc Quebecois, which is opposed to the death penalty.

  +-(1120)  

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    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the debate we are holding today in response to the official opposition motion obviously has an impact on everyone because for one week now Americans, as well as Canadians and Quebecers, have been directly affected. They have realized that we are no longer invulnerable. It is therefore important to take part in this debate in order to establish our values.

    I will begin by reiterating what the leader of the Bloc Quebecois said on the day of the attack. His statement encompasses values we hold dear:

    The Bloc Quebecois considers that this barbaric act is directed not just against the United States, but against all nations. If those responsible for these horrific deeds believe that they are furthering any sort of cause, they should know that they have achieved the opposite, that they have failed, and that their cause will remain forever stained by the blood of the victims. The Bloc Quebecois will support unconditionally any initiative by the Canadian government to provide assistance to the United States and to the American people, whether for humanitarian purposes or in order to track down the perpetrators and bring them to justice.

    Any discussion of terrorism has to be about trying to find those responsible for deeds such as those we witnessed on September 11. But, this is no small matter. What is terrorism? Who is a terrorist? When may one be considered a terrorist? All these questions and what we think are the answers must of course be included in a bill, whose purpose will be to prevent terrorism and foil tragic deeds because they threaten the balance and democracy which it has been our privilege to enjoy and which we wish for all of humanity.

    When we look at the reality of terrorism between 1981 and 2000, we note that internationally, it reached a peak in 1987. The question which arises is this: Will 2001 be a repeat? In the past five years, there has been an increase in the number of instances of terrorist activity in Asia and in Latin America. Everywhere else, such activity has decreased. Does 2001 signal a significant return to earlier levels?

    It is therefore important that Canada take into consideration the fourth recommendation of the UN security council. This recommendation was drafted shortly after the events which concern us and provides that:

    Calls also on the international community to redouble their efforts to prevent and suppress terrorist acts including by increased cooperation and full implementation of the relevant international anti-terrorist conventions and Security Council resolutions, in particular resolution 1269 of 19 October 1999.

    Today's debate is in keeping with this logic. As terrorism has neither nationality, border nor respect for human rights, the measures that nations such as ours may take must consider needs and the major international agreements aimed at protecting individual and human rights.

    Bill C-16 is currently being considered in committee. It falls within the context of anti-terrorist legislation. We fully expect that Bill C-16 will come back before the House. One of the elements of the motion of the official opposition refers to a total ban on fundraising activities. It is clear that Bill C-16 has a long way to go to totally ban fundraising activities.

  +-(1125)  

    So we must look at the problem.

    There is a recent international agreement on the elimination of funding for terrorism. Canada has yet to ratify it. It might be useful, if not essential, for Canada to continue to give thought to this. I do not doubt that today's debate will contribute to advancing discussions on this matter, among others.

    Before continuing, I would like to recall here the values Canada considers important. I was very pleased to hear the Prime Minister yesterday reminding Canadians and Quebecers, along with the international community as a whole, that Canada will not back down in matters of human rights.

    The day terrorist groups succeed in making a country like Canada back down with respect to human rights will be the day Canada takes an enormous step backwards, in my opinion. Because of this, it is vital to reaffirm the desire of all citizens of Canada and Quebec, and this desire must be affirmed by parliament, to honour international agreements, including the Geneva convention on refugees and the Geneva convention on torture.

    In this spirit, I am sure that the House fully understands the meaning of the amendment proposed by my colleague, the member for Saint-Bruno--Saint-Hubert, that the words “the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences” be struck from the main motion.

    We are all aware that since the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms was adopted in 1982, the supreme court, in good conscience, rules on what is fair and in compliance with the charter of rights. The ruling handed down in the Burns case, just a few months ago, was very clear on this subject. This is therefore something to which we are fundamentally opposed.

    We regret that the rigidity of some parliamentarians did not allow for this whole debate on terrorism, on ways to counteract terrorism and to come up with legislation to this effect that would be useful, not perfect, but useful, and all related aspects of terrorism to be fully examined in committee.

    What is good and extremely motivating about committee work is that we can, in good faith, discuss important issues, and terrorism is indeed an important issue.

    In this spirit, I would like to ask, for the second time, that the House give its unanimous consent to refer this debate on terrorism and the prevention of terrorism to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

    In view of the profound values we all share here, I believe, I hope that the House will give its unanimous consent, in the name of justice.

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[English]

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

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

[Translation]

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    Mr. Pierre Brien (Témiscamingue, BQ): Mr. Speaker, before I ask a question of my colleague, I too wish to extend my sympathy to those who have been affected by this terrible drama. Many people in my region of Abitibi—Témiscamingue have been affected by this terrorist action as well and are very sensitive to what will happen next.

    They are concerned, of course, but at the same time they want to see effective action taken against terrorism.

    That said, and I believe my colleague will share this opinion, care must be taken to not move too precipitously and to take steps that, while clearing our consciences, might not necessarily be effective.

    For example, in the motion by the Canadian Alliance MPs, reference is made to the necessity of extradition to country of origin of persons charged with acts of terrorism. But there is one thing we do not know: acts of terrorism committed where? Merely on the basis of a charge, they would be returned to their country. A state with the death penalty, or some other place in the world with the death penalty, would charge someone and, merely because he had been charged with an act of terrorism, he would have to be returned to his country. This is contrary to a number of international conventions, ones with which the hon. member is more familiar than myself, I realize.

    Does she not find it somewhat of an aberration that someone can be returned to his country of origin merely because he has been charged? I would add, just to show how little homework has been done by certain Canadian Alliance MPs in this connection, that the United Kingdom's legislation states that, when a state has the death penalty, extradition is not automatic. The Canadian Alliance seems to be creating the illusion, by the way they have worded their motion, that it is.

    I would like to hear what my colleague from Laval Centre has to say on this.

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    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral: Mr. Speaker, our position is very clear. We will always be opposed to having people in Canada be extradited to a country where they could face the death penalty.

    We know about the recent case of Haroun M'Barek. This young Tunisian, who was denied refugee status, was sent back to Tunisia in early January, even though we had every reason to believe he would be tortured.

    Indeed, once he was back in his country, our fears were confirmed. In the end, things got better for him, since he is now back in Canada. He arrived at Mirabel airport in early September, following the issuance of a ministerial permit. Canada recognized that it had an international responsibility to people who ask to settle here. In the case of Mr. M'Barek, the mistake was corrected. He is now back in Canada.

    If we fight against torture, which is something despicable, should we not be opposed to the death penalty?

    I will conclude with a thought. By definition, acts are like men: they are not perfect. As is the case with men and women, we must work to improve them. An act to deal with terrorism in Canada should be the result of a fair, full and vibrant co-operation between all the parties of this House. No parliamentarian wants incidents such as those that recently took place in the United States to happen here, in the United States, in Mexico, in France, in Israel, in Palestine or in Rwanda. No one wants that.

    Therefore we have a responsibility. I call on our social conscience as parliamentarians and citizens to do a job that we will be proud of.

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[English]

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg—Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the floor of the House of Commons is always an interesting place. We see a development in the debate today, which is interesting and which I hope will yet resolve itself in a way that permits the House to speak with one voice on this important matter of anti-terrorism and the need to refer the subject matter of anti-terrorism legislation to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

    I listened with care earlier to the leader of the official opposition who talked about the need for unity and the fact that what his party was engaged in was not any kind of political posturing, but rather an effort to enable the House of Commons to appropriately act.

    I think what has happened so far, but I reserve judgment because the day is not yet out and the jury is not yet in on what the final response of the Alliance will be, is that there certainly seems to be unanimity in the rest of the House about referring the subject matter of anti-terrorism legislation to the justice committee so that the committee, on behalf of all us, can begin the serious work that I think Canadians want us to do, and that it is a good idea to do.

    Twice members of the House have sought unanimous consent of the House to withdraw the motion that we now have before us and to permit the putting of a motion which would have that effect, and twice that unanimous consent has been denied. I hope that by the end of the day members of the Alliance will see that it is in its interest to agree, but not perhaps in terms of political tactics.

    Perhaps the Alliance's intent was to make the rest of us look somehow soft on security or terrorism, but I hope it will see that it is in the interest of the country to have the House of Commons act in an appropriate way, both procedurally and politically.

    I say procedurally because a lot of the concerns I have with the motion that we had before us were not just matters of substance. We certainly had some concerns about the motion, not just in terms of the substance of the motion but also procedurally.

    We were being asked to refer a matter to committee, but in doing so to adopt in principle approval of the anti-terrorism legislation of the United Kingdom. Thinking about this procedurally, without any reference to the substance of the matter, to me this is a bit like having second reading before the matter is even discussed or before we even know what the legislation is. Often we have second reading before we hear witnesses, but we do not have second reading before we have the legislation.

    If the Alliance thinks about it for a minute, it will realize that if the government were to have come forward with a motion referring something to committee with this much work of the committee already predetermined, it would say that this is unacceptable, that this was not the kind of motion it could live with and that it would be like a motion which created the maximum possible freedom for the committee to look at whatever it felt was relevant to the issue at hand.

    I hope that by the end of the day, perhaps by repeated argumentation of this sort and repeated opportunities for the Alliance to show it is serious about having the House act in a unified manner, we may yet be able to agree on a motion to refer the subject matter of anti-terrorism legislation to the justice committee. I do not want to say yet that it is calling the Alliance's bluff with respect to posturing. Someone else may want to say that later in the day, if the situation does not change.

    I have a few more comments even though I think we have made our position clear. We would like to see the standing committee study this matter. We believe that Canadians expect it of us. It may well be that there are a number of improvements we could make in our security and legislation having to do with anti-terrorism.

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    A number of suggestions have been made by the Minister of Justice with respect to things that have to be done in order to bring our legislative regime into compliance with conventions that we have already signed. All this is something the committee could look at.

    I find it passing strange by reference to the motion before us now that by the Alliance's own admission it is not just a question, and in fact it may not be a question, of the need for the kind of legislation that it has laid out. It may also be, and I listened to the Alliance critic on this, a matter of resources and a matter of current laws not being used appropriately, or not being used as extensively as they could be or not being able to be used as extensively as they could be because of a lack of resources. The Alliance critic himself pointed out that this was a problem in his view.

    One is tempted to ask him where the call came from in Canada's political culture for the radical cuts to government that worked their way through all the departments, including the ones he now laments the weakness of. One is tempted to ask him that question, but let us leave that aside for a minute and say that the motion which we have before us would bind the committee to looking only at what kind of new legislation is needed rather than questions having to do with other issues that the Alliance itself has raised with respect to the adequacy of the resources that the Government of Canada makes available to the agencies and departments that concern themselves with this issue.

    On the face of it, the motion before us is inadequate. However the idea behind it, that the justice committee should have a free, frank, open and concerted look at this subject matter, is a good idea and we are behind it. We hope that the Alliance will permit that to happen by agreeing at some point in the day to the request for unanimous consent to withdraw its motion and move that the subject matter be referred to a committee. That is a good idea.

    It seems that the Alliance is trying to do basically what its members would object to if the government did it, both procedurally and substantively, by presenting us with a kind of omnibus list of all the things that it is sure about. The Alliance does not like it when the government does it. The Alliance does not like it when the government gives us an omnibus list of things which other people are asked to agree to or be made to look bad, or hope that they will be made to look bad. If the Alliance is going to be consistent, it cannot expect to criticize the government when it does this and then do it itself and expect to be free of criticism.

    For all these reasons, I would certainly urge the critic for the Alliance party, who I see in the House, to consider the wisdom of accepting the suggestion being made by all other parties, that the committee be given a mandate to look at this matter and that the House be given the opportunity by agreement on the part of the Alliance to act in this united way.

    Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I would seek the unanimous consent of the House to withdraw the motion now before the House and to move: That the House mandate the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to study the matter of anti-terrorism legislation and report to the House not later than February 12, 2002.

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    The Deputy Speaker: Does the House give its consent to the member for Winnipeg--Transcona to propose the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

    The Deputy Speaker: There is no consent. Resuming debate. Will the hon. member for Winnipeg--Transcona be splitting his time with his colleague from Burnaby--Douglas, who I see rising, or any other member of the New Democratic Party?

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, I was not splitting my time and I have come to the end of my remarks.

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    The Deputy Speaker: Then we will proceed with the hon. member for Elk Island on questions and comments.

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    Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to answer some of the questions that members in the House have with respect to the motion. I think that their request to have this sent to a committee is embodied in the motion and the amendment. If they will vote for the amendment, it proposes to replace the words “to introduce” with “to send to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights, no later than November 1, 2001 draft” anti-terrorism legislation. In other words, our motion does say we should get it to the committee and fairly fast. That is obviously due to the fact that we now are aware that there is considerable urgency to this issue.

    There seems to be concern on the part of members of the House who are opposed to, or are giving an indication that they will probably vote against our motion regarding the six issues. I believe instead of facing it head on they are trying to talk around it and let the Liberal committee come up with legislation.

    We have specifically stated six items here, each of which deals with terrorist activities. We are not talking about nice people. We are talking about terrorists. We are talking about the type of people who would do what was done last week in the United States. We are saying that it is time we dealt very harshly with these people. Our motion states very clearly that we want the government to create draft legislation which does not omit the specific points on how to deal with terrorism.

    My intervention is more a comment than a question. I certainly would like the member to respond to why members suggest that they cannot support the motion. It gives the government clear direction on the type of legislation it should draft. The committee still has the power to amend it and the House still has the power at report stage to amend it and get on with the task at hand.

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, the member who just spoke accuses the government members, and I suppose perhaps myself by implication as well as others who do not agree with him, of not wanting to deal head on with the matters listed in the Alliance motion. We do want to deal with them. We want the committee to deal with them in a way that is not predetermined by the wording of a particular motion. That is the point.

    The member says that it will just be dealt with by a Liberal committee. I hope this is not the case. The member is not demonstrating much confidence in the members of the Alliance on the justice committee and their ability to make a case for whatever arguments they feel they wish to bring to that committee.

    We know that the committee is dominated by government members. The member's leader himself said that he hoped that this would be an issue on which members of the committee and the House could unite in solemn deliberation and reflection to come up with a solution we all think will help deal with the problem.

    When it comes to this issue, I do not think the member should prejudge either the substance of what the committee should come up with or the quality of the process the committee might enter into.

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    Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, following up in that vein, I can certainly understand the concerns being expressed by the member for Elk Island. With all due respect, all too often in the past we have seen the government launch a study. The wording of the substitute proposed motion, if I can call it that, would be exactly that, to study the matter of anti-terrorism legislation. As I said, all too often in the past, even with a deadline imposed, a study constitutes a lot of things, and different things to different members, parties and people.

    I agree that the motion as it exists, even as amended this morning, may be too restrictive. In that regard I am certainly concerned with the wording in some of the points contained in the motion and will be addressing that later. However, I am also concerned that if we accept this alternate motion, it basically leaves that wide open.

    I wonder if the member for Winnipeg--Transcona could address that.

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, I am not sure what the hon. member means by the alternate motion, if he means the motion to refer the subject matter to committee.

    It is not completely open in the sense that there is a date for reporting and not just referring the subject matter to the committee and the committee then decides if it does not want to deal with it. It will be difficult for the committee because there is also a sense of urgency in the country that we deal with Bill C-15 and that we get the anti-luring on the Internet laws passed and laws passed having to do with child pornography, home invasion and disarming a police officer. All of those are urgent on the agenda of the justice committee this fall and properly so. Members of the justice committee will have their work cut out for them to deal with those issues and to deal with this issue.

    I am not sure whether to refer to the member for Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough as a colleague of the hon. member, and I do not want to prejudice other arguments that may be coming tomorrow. I may refer to him as a geographical seatmate perhaps. In any event I am sure that the member for Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough and other members of the justice committee as well as Liberal members on the committee are not going to allow this to become just another study. If they do, they will be properly judged by the Canadian people.

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    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleague for his comments on this motion and to take a very brief opportunity to raise some serious substantive concerns as well about the proposal made by the Alliance in its motion today.

    That party suggests that we should adopt legislation similar in principle to the United Kingdom's Terrorism Act 2000. When we look at some of the provisions of that draconian legislation, deep concerns have been raised about the potential for abuse of that legislation.

    One of the prominent and respected labour backbenchers, the chair of the select committee on foreign affairs Donald Anderson, said that the legislation was trying to restore the divine right of kings. He pointed out that the legislation would in effect deny the right of British citizens or people who had fled from tyrannical regimes the opportunity to speak out against those regimes under this legislation. It is an extraordinary piece of legislation. Whether it is members of the Kurdish community speaking out against repression in Turkey or elsewhere, or whether it was those of us who spoke out against apartheid in South Africa or against the atrocities of the Indonesian government in East Timor, under the provisions of this legislation that the Alliance is so eager to embrace, we could be locked up. There are serious substantive concerns here.

    I would remind the Speaker that one of the Canadian Alliance members of parliament from Calgary defined Nelson Mandela as a terrorist. Under this legislation that provision could be used to deport Nelson Mandela or another person fighting for liberation and human rights and freedom to their death in another country.

    It is an assault on refugees. It is an assault on human rights. Certainly it should not guide this parliament in its work in attempting to respond to the very serious concerns that my colleague has addressed on the issue of terrorism.

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, the member for Burnaby--Douglas did not really ask me a question but he did make a comment or two. He expressed concerns that I share.

    Here again, the nature of the motion before us is to adopt in principle the legislation in the U.K. about which there are obviously many concerns without the committee having the opportunity to study it. There may be merit to some aspects of that legislation but there are obviously very real concerns about that legislation.

    One of the things that concerns us throughout this debate, and not only on this issue but on the debate on Bill C-16 and others is, what is a terrorist? We know that there are people who have been regarded as terrorists by their national governments but have not been regarded as terrorists by the international community.

    In anything that we do, there is a strong need to indicate the need for a definition of terrorism that does not include people like Nelson Mandela and others who may be engaged in legitimate forms of struggle against racism and oppression. That need certainly does not manifest itself in the rhetoric or the analysis of our colleagues in the Alliance.

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    Mr. Stan Keyes (Hamilton West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I want to lend my support to my colleague from Winnipeg--Transcona who is, by the way, a learned and very experienced member when it comes to committee work and the work of the House, so I think we have to pay some heed to his remarks and the suggestion that he is making to us today.

    Have I decided how I will vote on this particular motion at the end of the day? No, not yet, because I want to give the benefit to the House and the opportunity for my colleagues in the House to debate this particular motion and possibly make the changes that would make it acceptable to the government side.

    Quite frankly the suggestion made by the member for Winnipeg--Transcona is acceptable to the government side. We are prepared to meet what is the exact aim of the opposition party. I would suggest that their aim as indicated to us today is to move this issue to committee.

    If we have any trust and faith in our colleagues on all sides of the House, the aim has been met with the suggested amendment. We move it to committee. We have a full and thorough discussion on the possibility of even having precise anti-terrorism legislation. Or do we do as the minister suggested and amend certain acts within certain ministries, which would make it possible to accomplish the same end that the Alliance Party has put forward? All we are asking for is reasonableness. Let us be reasonable, bring it before our colleagues on the committee and tell them to deal with the issues.

    Here is my question for the member for Winnipeg--Transcona, given the sober second thought of the debate that has just occurred and the aim given by the opposition which would be accomplished by moving it to committee. I would ask if he could possibly bring forward his suggested amendment one more time for unanimous consent of the House.

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    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, perhaps I have the opportunity to do that. I thank the hon. member for the suggestion.

    One more time for good measure, I wonder if the Chair would seek unanimous consent of the House to have the motion now before the House withdrawn, and following that unanimous consent, for me to move a motion that the House mandate the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to study the matter of anti-terrorism legislation and report to the House no later than February 12, 2002.

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    The Deputy Speaker: Does the House give its consent to the member for Winnipeg—Transcona to propose the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

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    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I am always pleased to follow my colleague on the justice committee, the member for Winnipeg--Transcona. I have no hesitation in calling him a colleague.

    I will be splitting my time with my political proximity, the hon. member for Prince George--Peace River.

    Perhaps an appropriate place to start is this issue of priorities. Suffice it to say that on the fatal morning of September 11 a lot of people's priorities changed. Some people's priorities inevitably change when they get married, have a child or a new job and I think that catastrophic event caused many of us to change our priorities.

    Certainly the focus of this debate is on how Canada's immigration policies and priorities change. There are matters of internal security and the way in which government allocates resources to those vested with responsibility of enforcing internal security and to those in the policing community and national defence community who have a very important role to play in our society. How do they live up to those priorities? If we can bring the debate back to that focus I think we would be well served.

    Looking at the opposition day motion, if I may comment briefly on the way in which it is worded, I have no difficulty with this forming the subject matter of the debate and forming somewhat the terms of reference for the justice committee, which will be tasked with the study. I would feel more comfortable if it included somewhere in the text the wording that the justice committee study these issues but not be limited exclusively to these issues.

    I certainly interpret that we can read it in that fashion, because I would not want to see the justice committee in any way precluded from examining acts that may exist in other countries and from looking at other methods by which countries enforce and carry out their internal security matters and immigration policies. I believe that all of this in the broader context has to be on the table if we are to look at this in the most intelligent and most reasonable fashion.

    Yesterday we saw many members, both collectively and individually, express their horror on the events of September 11. While the rescue workers are sorting through the concrete and shards of glass, trying to aid those whose lives have been shattered, I think we have to sort through some of the political rubble and rhetoric surrounding this issue. We have to look for real purpose to find some motivation in these events and give this study and issue our laser guided attention in trying to come up with some conclusions and make some sense of this, because this is something with which Canadians have collectively struggled. They ask how we can make some sense of this horrific act and move to the next stage, which is enforcing justice for those who were responsible, but perhaps equally and more important, how do we prevent matters like this from occurring?

    We heard discussions about specific attempts to change the way that airport or airplane security is put in place. The opportunity we have before us with this supply day motion talks about a reference to the committee with the United Kingdom's terrorist act as a starting point. It then goes on to outline some of the elements of legislation that we should be looking at, such as the naming of all known international terrorist organizations operating in Canada. To some extent we have this information available to us now so we are partway there.

    Should we be banning any form of participation in terrorism in Canada? On the face of it, yes, but then we have to delve deeper. What defines terrorism? What defines a legitimate form of protest? When does it cross that hazy line into activism that is bordering on violence or on civil disobedience and into activities that endanger people's lives, safety and security?

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    There are other elements like banning fundraising activities that support terrorism. We know that these activities are underway now in Canada. There is a bill currently before the other place that will hopefully address this, yet anyone who has looked at the legislation knows that it is insufficient. It simply says that charitable status is lost for engaging in that activity. In light of the horrific circumstances, it is really an insult to suggest that this would be the only repercussion from engaging in that type of activity.

    We must go forward. The ratification of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism is now merely a matter of Canada living up to its obligations, that is, fulfilling its word. There is detail before us on this convention, which was signed and adopted at the UN General Assembly on December 9, 1999.

    Some of those elements that Canada penned and was a participant in must now be brought to fruition. We must give weight to this international convention. We must be prepared to co-operate fully with our international partners. We must be prepared to give the resources that are necessary to implement this convention in the country.

    Creating specific crimes for engaging in terrorism is certainly something we have to do. We have to define it. We have to make that definition and give that definition weight by clearly enunciating that there will be ramifications, that there will be retribution, if you will, for engaging in terrorist acts.

    The elements of our immigration policy with respect to extradition certainly have to be re-examined. There was a time in the early 1990s when there was contemplation of putting in place a super department for internal security which would bring together elements of immigration and internal security. Interestingly, at that time there was a great hue and cry from the Prime Minister, who was the leader of the opposition of the day. In essence he alluded to the fact that this would bring about some element of anti-immigration sentiment in the country.

    The Prime Minister stated in 1993 that it would be a cynical and manipulative action if the Conservative government of the day were to move in any way in that direction. The Prime Minister went on to define the contemplation of this by stating that it would be unthinkable for a future Liberal government to continue to slot immigration with public security.

    We are at that point now where we have to talk about this. We have to contemplate looking at immigration because it is so closely associated with this element of terrorism, this element of violence that can be perpetrated by those who come from away, from this massive global community we live in, over our international borders and carry out acts of horrific implications, either here or in close proximity, in the United States.

    All of these issues have to be given great discussion and insight. Minute details have to be examined because the grave implications are clear. We know now what can happen. We need not look any further than last week's events to see the absolutely apocalyptic implications for not acting and not acting swiftly.

    Much of the discussion has already touched on the issue of resource allocation, the issue of giving CSIS, our RCMP and our national defence agencies greater resources. There can be no denying that this is an area we have to pursue. Admittedly this is simplistic thinking, but simplistic as it may be, perhaps there is an admission from those who are currently in positions in those agencies. There is an outcry for greater tools, for greater resources to carry out the tasks that they are asked to enforce.

    If we take this obligation seriously it is something that can happen quickly. We saw in the United States an immediate response from congress in allocating $20 billion toward a thorough examination of where the resources should go.

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    That could be the response of the government as well should it choose to move in that direction. That in the short term would provide some solace and some comfort for the areas in which we are clearly lacking.

    There is a great need and again an opportunity with legislation before the House to make the changes necessary to immigration, the gatekeeper of the country. The majority of Canadians are looking to us now in this time of need to come forward with intelligent, thoughtful and decisive action. We have to take that obligation very seriously. In the justice committee and in the House we will have that task before us now and for some considerable time in the future.

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    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the member just asked if this would exclude the committee's consideration of other possible motions. It is quite clear that this is not exclusionary. The several policy suggestions included in the motion would be the basis of legislation but not the legislation in toto. I wanted to make that comment. I do not think any one should be tempted to vote against this because they may have other ideas which they would like to contribute to the legislation.

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    Mr. Peter MacKay: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the hon. member for Calgary Southeast putting that forward. The justice committee, by virtue of the way it is comprised, the way in which it views this issue and the way in which we all view this issue will take the broadest possible references. This is a good starting point. There are elements of it that cause a great deal of discomfort for some, but this is one of those occasions where we have to look beyond partisan interest. I am hopeful and I believe we are all hopeful that this was not an attempt to divide members of the House but to bring them together in a common purpose.

    I am very much looking forward to getting down to business, rolling up our sleeves and coming forward with not only legislative initiatives but coming forward with real ideas and commitments that will be followed through. Words certainly will not be enough and they will ring in a very hollow and cynical way across the country if we do not respond in a meaningful way in very short order.

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    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate my colleague from our coalition on his wise words and good speech.

    Would he explore some of the details and practical implications that might be put in place, not only in legislation but things the government may want to move on immediately in the spirit of the co-operation we had in the House in the debate of yesterday, and that is concrete actions we can take to implement and address this war on terrorism.

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    Mr. Peter MacKay: Mr. Speaker, some of the things that could happen in fairly short order, given the situation with the surplus, is a return of personnel and budgets to agencies such as CSIS and national defence. We have to come up with a plan with respect to reservists and recruits in our armed forces.

    I would suggest that airport security is an area where we can sharply focus our attention immediately. We know that because of the privatization of many airports, for example, there may be a need to put in place stricter guidelines for the hiring of security officers. There was a report yesterday of which all members of the House will be aware and which was alarming. There were dummy exercises in which people were asked to bring mock explosives through airport security. I am sure this caused incredible angst in the country, given the potential for disaster.

    Those are short term solutions we should be looking at right away. We should be looking at the whole range of options and solutions, both short and long term. The information that is publicly available about terrorist organizations operating in our midst and a CSIS report indicates that the government has been advised.

    In a newspaper account Chantale Lapalme, who is a spokesperson for CSIS, indicated that it was targeting 350 people, possible terrorists, within Canada today, plus 50 organizations. She stated quite rightly:

    CSIS's role is to advise government. We advise government, so it would be up to government to take action

    Those are certainly words I agree with. I would like to see the government now take the action that is necessary. We in this coalition and other opposition members are prepared to work with the government at the committee level and in the House, to address this pending crisis. If we do not, we do so at our collective peril and at our countrymen's peril.

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    Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure, despite the topic, to address the opposition motion as put forward by the Canadian Alliance.

    At the outset , I believe Canadians individually and collectively are struggling right now with the fallout from this horrendous terrorist attack, which obviously was launched against our very basic freedoms, our way of life and our society as we know it.

    As a member of parliament, what I am hearing, and I think what all members of parliament are hearing, from constituents and Canadians at large is what to do. Where do we go? What does it mean? How have our lives changed? We all know that our lives will never be the same after the events of last Tuesday, only one short week ago. What does it all mean?

    I spoke briefly yesterday during an intervention about the very real fear of war. Across the land we have all this talk of war. I spoke of a telephone conversation that I had with my young son who was back in my riding of Fort St. John in northern British Columbia. He asked what me this meant and what did all this talk of war mean to Canada, to Canadians and in particular to the young who might be called upon to fight a war? We have to recognize that. There is a great deal of concern.

    It is our role as parliamentarians and the role of government to show some leadership on this issue. That is being reflected in the communications from our constituents.

    Certainly myself and the coalition which I am pleased to represent are strongly supportive of the government stand that we must stand shoulder to shoulder with the Americans because these attacks have been launched on all of us, against the free world, as it were. There is a need to stand strong and to make those commitments known. We support that.

    We also have to recognize the fears out there and we have to address those fears in a very real way. I received one communication by e-mail from a teacher from Fort Nelson, up in the far reaches of my rural riding near the Yukon. Val Keeler wrote to me and said:

    Dear Mr. Hill,

     I feel I have a duty to let you know that as an educator I hear a great number of students' thoughts and fears about what the result of last Tuesday's bombings may bring.

     Several thousand innocent victims have perished in the destruction of the World Trade Center this past Tuesday. Since then, events have unfolded very rapidly, and this unjustifiable tragedy now seems to be used as a blanket green light for war and blind hatred.

    She goes on to list the concerns being expressed by the students at Northern Lights College in Fort Nelson. I think all members in this place are getting similar communication and correspondence right now. We have to address that.

    While I have no desire to negate all the kind words expressing angst, sorrow and support for our neighbours to the south, clearly much more is needed than this. The free world needs a plan of how we will fight this new war of the 21st century, which has been thrust upon us. It is not something that we went looking for.

    Yesterday under the guise of a vaguely worded government motion, Canadians were expecting the House and their representatives they sent here to seriously debate the horrendous attack on the United States, what threat this posed to Canada and what exactly we as parliamentarians were prepared to do to ensure that our nation and our way of life would be protected.

    They expected and deserved an informed exchange on what had been done and what could be done to prevent such an atrocity from occurring in our cities. Instead, sadly, Canadians got exactly what President Bush has been calling for, a return to the way things were before the attack. Again I emphasize, despite the eloquent words of many members of the House, and I do not question for even a single moment how heartfelt those words were, there was little in the way of substance coming from the government in which Canadians could find comfort .

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    In democracy's darkest hour our government needed to provide the Canadians with a reassurance that it was not only concerned for their welfare but was prepared to act. More importantly they needed the Prime Minister to provide true leadership.

    The government could have appeared before the House speaking with a united voice had the Prime Minister considered the attack on the United States important enough to recall the House or at the very least hold an emergency cabinet meeting. If this despicable barbaric act of war does not warrant such a meeting, I do not know what does.

    In a true display of leadership, the prime minister of Britain, Tony Blair, did both. The citizens of the United Kingdom knew that their government was on the job and taking the attack against democracy seriously.

    Our government held its first cabinet meeting today, exactly seven days after the attack and six days later than it should have.

    One can only imagine what was discussed this morning, but I for one certainly hope that the debate around the cabinet table was more visionary than yesterday's in this Chamber. I would expect that the government would emerge with a plan of action as to how it would improve safety and security within our borders. I would also expect that the ministers of justice, defence, transport, immigration and the solicitor general were sufficiently prepared to fight for the additional resources. Members on both sides of the House have expressed that they need to do their jobs more effectively.

    As a member of the PC/DR coalition, I am particularly concerned that the warnings and recommendations of CSIS, our national security agency, either go unheard at the cabinet table or worse are ignored by the cabinet altogether. CSIS has been warning “Like other democratic nations in the developed world, Canada is inherently vulnerable to acts of terrorism” and that “for a number of reasons Canada is an attractive venue for terrorists”. Those are not my words. Those are words from a CSIS report.

    In its report to the solicitor general, CSIS went on to state that “many of the world's terrorist groups have a presence in Canada where they engage in a variety of activities in support of terrorism, including”, and it lists: logistical support such as obtaining weapons and equipment to be shipped abroad; attempts to establish operational support bases in Canada; fundraising; use of Canada as a base to arrange terrorist activities; and raising money through illegal activities.

    I could go on but my point is this. CSIS is doing its job within its mandate and yet there is no appearance whatsoever that the government takes seriously the threats that CSIS identifies. I am not suggesting for a moment that there be an overreaction but a reaction would be appropriate.

    CSIS needs adequate resources and an effective mandate to expand the work which it has already undertaken. The reality is that we are being confronted with a new breed of terrorist, and we are all in agreement on that, one without purpose and ignores what we previously believed were conventional boundaries. They are high tech and determined, and we need to ensure that our intelligence agencies are capable of operating at their level. CSIS also needs the ability to monitor terrorists at the source, not only within our boundaries. The mandate of CSIS should be changed to allow international intelligence gathering including the use of foreign operatives when deemed necessary.

    The motion before the House this morning will go a long way to strengthening the role of CSIS and the protection of our way of life. In Canada it should be illegal to belong to a terrorist organization. It should be illegal to engage in terrorist training within our borders. It should be illegal to raise funds on their behalf. To simply remove charitable status from terrorist organizations is an extremely weak response to such a serious threat.

    I have reservations about suggestion five in the motion, that we promptly extradite foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism. Many colleagues from various parties have raised this concern as well. The wording of this suggestion is vague and leaves open to interpretation who is doing the charging and who determines what is an act of terrorism. There are countries in the world where Canada and United States support dissident factions that are fighting against oppressive and corrupt governments. Obviously this fighting of corruption and oppression would be considered terrorist by the ruling powers in those countries. I would not want to see Canada forced to return allies to those countries to face death or torture for their actions.

    I would prefer to see the suggestion removed from the motion and have Canada focus on preventing the entry of known terrorists, as identified by CSIS, than spend millions of dollars tracking them within our borders.

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    The past week has been a difficult time for all Canadians. Given our close ties to our American neighbours, Canadians need assurances from their government that action will be taken and that resources will be committed to the fight against this new evil.

    It is time for the government to announce its intentions and to provide the leadership that Canadians deserve.

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    Mr. Dennis Mills (Toronto—Danforth, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am disappointed with the remarks made by the hon. member because many of the things that he said about the actions that were taken or were not taken immediately after the tragedy in the United States were not factually correct.

    The Prime Minister was in fact on the phones with his ministers, wherever they were, not unlike President Bush whose cabinet was in many different places. Our Minister of Transport acted immediately. I will not go through the long litany and the long list of things that the people of Canada, the Government of Canada and members of parliament did this week. That is not the point.

    The point is that yesterday, immediately on the first day back, we had an emergency debate. Today we respect, honour and celebrate the opposition day motion on dealing with this problem in a very precise and active way.

    I said this morning that I supported the idea of the right hon. leader of the progressive conservative-democratic representative coalition that all parliamentarians should get involved in the debate. However, taking cheap shots at our side of the House is not the way that we will resolve and come together on the issue.

    The hon. member can disagree with me but this is a period of time where we could emulate the example of our neighbours to the south and work together. That is what Canadians want.

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    Mr. Jay Hill: Mr. Speaker, I deeply respect my hon. colleague's opinion, but in this instance I do not believe for a moment that what I was doing was taking cheap political shots.

    I was expressing some very real heartfelt concerns expressed to members on both sides of the House about what was the government's plan, because we have not seen it.

    It is fine for him to say that yesterday we had an emergency debate, however yesterday's reconvening of parliament hardly constituted an emergency. It has been on the books for months. That is the government's idea of pointing to this and saying that it has done something, that it has had a debate in the House of Commons.

    Yesterday's debate was necessary and I supported it as part of the grieving process. All members had an opportunity up until midnight last night to express the grief, the sorrow, and the angst that their constituents are feeling. That is our job. However our job is also to point out that the government does not have an action plan. If it does, it certainly has not been communicating it, not during question period and not during debate.

    As I pointed out in my speech, at the very least and at the very most, the young people of Canada are looking to the government for an explanation of what all these words of war mean because we are not getting the answers. Not yet.

    Following today's cabinet meeting I am very hopeful because backbenchers on the Liberal side as well as the opposition members should be asking the same question of the cabinet, of the government and of the Prime Minister. What does it mean for Canada and for Canadians?

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    Mr. Stan Keyes (Hamilton West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I point out to the hon. member that it is his job to be informed. Unfortunately he demonstrated in his remarks that he was ill-informed. It is his job to get the facts straight. Unfortunately his facts were incorrect.

    I hoped that the debate today, and especially that of yesterday, would not deteriorate to what it is becoming: a big session between the opposition and the government. Why do we not try to work together either in here or through our House leaders, to find a resolve to get this matter to committee?

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    Mr. Jay Hill: Mr. Speaker, perhaps part of the problem is that government members are afraid. They are afraid that the opposition will ask the tough question of where the action plan is to address this issue. That is the problem.

    If members would read Hansard when it comes out and look at what I actually said during my remarks, they would see I was merely echoing the concerns being expressed by millions of Canadians regarding the government's inaction. I support referring this issue to a committee.

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    Mr. Dennis Mills: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. The member made a statement earlier today that cabinet had its first meeting on this issue today. That is not factually correct.

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    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): I hear the hon. member. This is a place where there is considerable serious debate. Let us try to keep it factual if at all possible.

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    Mr. Gurmant Grewal (Surrey Central, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is with a heavy heart that I speak today for the people of Surrey Central regarding the calculated, tragic terrorist acts in the United States. I too wish to 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 also want to say in the clearest possible terms that I condemn terrorists and those who support them.

    Today the Canadian Alliance motion asks the government to introduce anti-terrorist legislation similar in principle to the United Kingdom's terrorism act of 2000 that provides for the naming of terrorist organizations operating in Canada, banning fundraising activities and immediate ratification of the international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism, et cetera.

    At this time of profound crisis we as a global village should pull together to show solidarity against acts of violence and hatred. There is a river of resolution flowing through the world. I call on people of all faiths and backgrounds to work together to put a stop to terrorist acts that have no place in our civilized society.

    We have one thing in common around the globe: we are all humans. However we should also realize that the people who did this terrible act are criminals. The wind is knocked out of the human spirit but it will be up once we deal with those who caused it.

    Hate is like a monster that controls the mind and body causing harm to others. The idea of dying for one's faith has been distorted by the evil ones. Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect, does not seem to be a true Muslim as he does not act like a Muslim. However mosques have been attacked. The people of the United States were not guilty because of the acts of Timothy McVeigh in Oklahoma. He was not a Muslim either. This is not a religious thing and let us not make it into one.

    Retaliation against a religion or a faith is not appropriate. Hatred is our true enemy. Some innocent American and Canadian Sikhs have been assaulted simply because they wear a turban, grow a beard and resemble pictures of bin Laden as shown on TV. Others have been assaulted because they appear to be from the Middle East.

    Evil resides in the hearts of individuals, not in a nation or in a religion. Therefore let us look beyond a person's appearance and instead look into a person's soul.

    As the days go by we will mourn the dead, but we will also find ways to make sure that no one will ever be allowed to suffer from such terrible acts. The recent acts of violence will only make us stronger and give us the resolve to protect democracy and freedom. We in the global village must bring about changes in our attitudes and policies and rethink the way that governments govern.

    While thwarting terrorist activities immediately, a permanent and long term solution must be found. We must remember that terrorists are not born. They are made.

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    With fairer foreign policies and fewer double standards, many conflicts could have been prevented or resolved long ago. While we stand shoulder to shoulder with our American neighbours and allies we must remember that the countries in Central Asia around Afghanistan, which is the prime target, have fragile political, social and economic environments. Three of the region's countries are declared nuclear powers and some are undeclared.

    There are many ethnic and religious conflicts in the region. Local support for military action may be limited and skin deep. Based on religion or ethnicity, there are chances of polarization or even civil wars. Many bitter wars have already been fought and many border disputes linger. Alternatives like diplomacy, intelligence, economic solutions, co-operation and understanding among nations should therefore be explored or used in combination with military action.

    Here at home we must ensure that Canada will be neither a target for terrorism nor a launching pad for terror against others. Now more than ever we must work toward peace, preventive diplomacy, restoring hope, and reducing risk rather than increasing it.

    This will mean improving Canada's immigration, justice, defence, intelligence, security and foreign policies and providing the relevant agencies the resources to effectively do their jobs. We do not need to have a crisis before the leadership acts.

    On many occasions we in our party have stood alone in calling for an end to policies that allow fronts of terrorist organizations to raise funds and claim charitable status in Canada. Some of these terrorists may have found their targets through our country. Corruption in foreign nations continues. The government must change its cover up mentality and take appropriate action.

    Canada's immigration policy must be effective and efficient. We should not be seen by organized criminals and terrorists as an easy haven. The charter of rights should not be able to be used as a crowbar by the world's terrorists and criminals. This undermines the quality of citizenship for which immigrants have fought so hard.

    The government needs to begin by taking the advice of its own intelligence agencies more seriously and moving from there. Our intelligence sources and armed forces remain a shadow of their former selves, unable to back up our commitment to our grieving neighbours to the south. An annual report from CSIS indicates that funding cuts have seriously hurt its ability to adequately do its job. It is the priorities that I am questioning here.

    This is a time when we need to come together to fight our common foe and not waste precious time bickering among ourselves. It is a time for action.

    I therefore support the motion and call on the government to act forcefully to oppose terrorism in every way possible. The government must help to focus our minds on finding solutions to the problem of terrorism. This is the time to act. This weak Liberal government without vision must act now.

  +-(1240)  

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    Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I greatly acknowledge the work of the hon. member in bringing to the attention of Canadians the reactionary measures we may have toward the Muslim, Arab and Islam communities in Canada. It is a disgrace.

    We read the news this morning about a 15 year old boy who was attacked viciously because of who he was and what he looked like. That is something against which all parliamentarians should stand and say they will not accept in any way.

    Given the premise and content of the motion before the House, would the hon. member agree to seek unanimity among all parliamentarians to keep this a non-partisan issue and give confidence to the Canadian public that we are working as a team and not playing partisan politics?

    Would the member accept the recommendation of the other four parties in the House of Commons and advise that we withdraw the motion and introduce one that says the act of terrorism should be put to the committee for immediate study? He and other members of the justice committee are doing a good job in that respect. That is where this discussion should be and it should be put forward quickly.

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    Mr. Gurmant Grewal: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his intervention. Regarding the first point he raised, it is important that we not look merely at appearance. We should look at the individuals who have been living in Canada, contributing to our economic prosperity and strengthening our social safety net and multicultural fabric. We should accept them as Canadians and look at their contribution, not attack them because of their appearance. That is absolutely wrong.

    In the member's second point he mentioned his concern about the motion. This is a good motion because it asks the government to take immediate action. What we need in Canada is legislation which ensures that various agencies are involved. The government is working in co-operation with many other agencies around the world.

    This is not a small thing affecting only a segment of the world's population. It affects each and every individual in the world. The economy, our way of life and many other things are factors. It is the responsibility of the government to uphold the law. It must make responsible and resourceful adjustments so that it can implement the law.

    We are here to make laws. That is why millions of Canadians have sent us here. By way of the motion we are asking the government to introduce anti-terrorism legislation, something it should have done long ago. Prevention is always better than cure, but the government does not want a cure for these kinds of issues.

    The motion asks not only for ratification but for the naming of all known international terrorist organizations operating in Canada. That is a very good point. If we do not know the people who are operating in Canada, how can we stop their actions?

    The motion asks for a complete ban on fundraising activities. Funding is very important for terrorist activities. When terrorist organizations raise money in Canada they get tax free status. In other words, when Canadians pay taxes to the government, the government gives tax free charitable status to terrorist organizations for raising funds. Taxpayer money is used for sponsoring terrorist activities. That means terrorism is sponsored by the state. This should not happen.

    There are many things to be done including the ratification of the treaty. I ask all members of all parties in the House for a co-operative rather than a confrontational approach. I urge all members to support the motion.

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    Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I am happy to comment on the debate. On behalf of the people of Selkirk--Interlake I extend condolences to the families of the victims in the United States.

    I ask the hon. member whether this is a partisan or non-partisan issue. The idea of recognizing that there is a massive problem with terrorism and that something must be done about it is a non-partisan issue. All members of the House of Commons would agree with that. However finding solutions to the problem and determining what should be done cannot be achieved through non-partisan debate.

    Would the member not agree that we need partisan debate in parliament to effectively deal with the issue, find solutions to it and determine a course of action?

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    Mr. Gurmant Grewal: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his very good comment. There is unanimity on the issue not only in the House but in other parliaments around the globe.

    Our feelings must be translated into action. To do that we must have non-partisanship in the country and in parliament. That is why the motion which the Canadian Alliance put forward is non-partisan. I urge all members to look through the lens of issues rather than politics.

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    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is with a heavy heart that I rise to speak to a matter brought to this place by one of the greatest tragedies in modern history. It will undoubtedly be the greatest matter of import dealt with in this parliament and by many of us during our time in this place.

    The events of a week ago today hit all Canadians in various personal and emotional ways. My brother was in the World Trade Center the day before the attack. He was to stay in a hotel across the street from it that was destroyed. It brings to mind the role of fate and the randomness of this ferocious violence which has left at least 5,000 families with a great loss from which they will never fully recover.

    In contemplating these events we sometimes speak glibly about the need to stand by the United States because it is our friend and trading partner. Both these things are true and both are good reasons to support it.

    However there is a higher reason for us to stand by the United States. So often we Canadians seek to strengthen our sense of self by casting a critical eye on the imperfections of our American neighbour. Regrettably we have even heard murmurs of that old discontent throughout the past week in Canada and throughout the past day here in parliament.

    However now is a moment, unlike any in our history, for all Canadians to set aside the habit of small mindedness and unashamedly affirm the nobility of the American experiment in democracy and liberty, values we hold in common.

    The World Trade Center was perhaps the world's greatest symbol of economic liberty and free enterprise. It looked out on to the Statue of Liberty, a sight which itself has welcomed millions seeking the blessings of that freedom which we share.

    The Pentagon is the great symbol of the American resolve to defend democracy, including our own. It stands within sight of the Lincoln Memorial which is itself across from the Capitol building, the temple of American democracy, which itself was another target. The Lincoln Memorial is a powerful testament to American resolve, to how tirelessly Americans will fight to maintain democracy and government of, by and for the people.

    It was no mistake that the forces of destruction chose these as their targets, for it is freedom and democracy that they fear and seek to destroy. It is these common values which we are now being called to defend.

    As Andrew Coyne of the National Post recently wrote:

    The men who destroyed the World Trade Centre are not moved by mere hatred of Israel, or even the United States: it is western civilization they hate, in all its forms, with all its values. The only way we could escape their wrath would be by abandoning those values, engaging in ever more craven acts of appeasement, until at last there was nothing left of us but self-loathing.

    I was disturbed yesterday to hear a remark repeated at least half a dozen times in the House. Members of different parties said that the war in which we now find ourselves engaged that has been thrust upon us is not a conflict of good and evil. They said there are no clear, stark moral absolutes here and that we cannot apply normative moral objective categories such as good and evil to the conflict.

    Members have said repeatedly that we must focus on the root causes of this ferocious act of terror. These root causes have been nebulously referred to as social inequity, the growing gap between rich and poor, and the uneven distribution of power in international institutions. This is folly.

  +-(1250)  

    Let me quote from my leader's speech yesterday when he said:

    Root causes must be addressed, but it is sheer folly, let there be no mistake, when we say that the root cause of terrorism is the terrorists themselves. The hatred that moves them to massacre the innocent can never be negotiated with or reasoned with.

    It is not a matter of shades of grey...This is not a time for moral ambiguity. It is a moment of moral clarity.

    For those who would have us address the root causes, would they have stood in this place in the fall of 1939 when Poland was being attacked and invited us to contemplate the root causes of German aggression and Nazi anti-semitism, the humiliation of Germany in the Versailles treaty or the economic crisis in Weimar Germany, and to address the social and economic inequities as the root cause of Nazi terror? No, that is not what our predecessors in this place did. They called evil by its name and committed the nation and all its resources to its complete elimination and unequivocal surrender which cost great quantities of Canadian toil, treasure and blood.

    I think that mindset is one which we must now adopt for ourselves at this time. We can have our international organizations and our north-south dialogues. We can address the need to improve living standards in other parts of the world, but that is not what this is about. The attack last week did not come from some nebulous voice of third world inequity. It came from deliberate, evil-minded, malicious killers who were motivated by hate, many of whom have never experienced the kind of poverty that is implied in this reference to root causes. Most of them were well off in some of the wealthiest countries in the world financed by a multimillionaire. This is not about economics. It is not about politics as we would normally understand it. It is about a boldfaced attack on all that we stand for as a western civilization.

    If we do not start from that first principle, whatever policy response we have will be inadequate. That is my concern and that is what we have seen reflected, regrettably, in the weakness of response from this country's leadership to date. I hope that will change.

    There is no obvious, clear, simple panacea to this. Pointing to the morally objective nature of this struggle between good and evil does not mean that we embrace simplistic solutions to this incredibly complex problem. On the contrary, the war on terrorism, and it is a war, will require a fight on so many different fronts, including the legislative front. We must do what we can in this parliament to ensure that the principal responsibility of the federal government is for the safety and security of Canadians and Canadian sovereignty. That is what part of our motion today calls for and that is why I am supporting it. I hope other parties and members will too.

    We can change our laws but that of course will not stop the terrorists in their lairs in some 30 countries in which they operate and in the several countries that actively sponsor, support and harbour these people. I want to briefly turn my attention to this problem. What I picked up from the debate yesterday was the notion that all we have to do is some very targeted and limited covert action to remove a few of the most guilty hate mongers and terrorists. I heard that it need not be a broader conflict, that it need not involve conventional warfare conflict and that it need not be a state to state matter.

    As the defence minister suggested, this is not a conflict between states. I disagree profoundly and it is folly if that is the basis of our action.

    As the president of the United States said a week ago last night, he will make no distinction between those states that harbour and support the terrorists and the terrorists themselves. I support that principle of action because those states which make this kind of terror possible are equally culpable. The fury of the free world must be focused not just on the terrorists themselves but on those states and that does mean there will be military conflict of some sort.

  +-(1255)  

    It also means that as a free country, as one of the most blessed and wealthiest nations in the world, we have a profound moral obligation to do our duty, to do our share as Canadians have done before. However we are not in a position to do so now. Our military expenditures are less than half the average of NATO countries. We have the second lowest military expenditure in NATO. That means when our allies call upon us to do our share we are not in a position to do so.

    I want to close with a call for all of us, the government in particular, to begin a massive reprioritization of the responsibilities of the federal government. Protecting sovereignty, peace and order are our first responsibilities. We must think deeply about changing our priorities so that we can do our share and fulfill our moral obligations in this fight against evil.

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    Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I share the hon. member's passion at a time of real and present crisis as a result of what happened last week. However I am also concerned that the hon. member has fixed his entire debate and his views on how this issue can be best solved on the words of a very narrow and yet ill-defined motion.

    The hon. member may want to clarify for the House how he sees the United Kingdom's terrorist act and give his interpretation of whether or not it involves the suppression of the rule of law. The determination of terrorism in countries we are currently dealing with, Israel being a good example of where there have been allegations of people who have been deemed terrorists, would effectively cut off our relationship with those countries.

    I understand the member's commitment and his passion but I fail to see the reasoning in the motion he has put forward today.

    Yesterday was the 19th anniversary of the Sabra and Shatila massacre. The hon. member probably has other examples that he would like to touch upon as they relate to issues of terrorism but he talked about World War II. I am interested in what the resolve of parliament was in World War II.

    This is a modern evil which requires some time, patience and restraint. Will the hon. member show that restraint by modifying this resolution in favour of what other parties on this side of the House have been talking about this morning?

  +-(1300)  

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    Mr. Jason Kenney: Mr. Speaker, I do not think it is necessary to modify the motion. These are sound policy proposals gleaned from the legislation of several other democratic jurisdictions and would form the basis of a reference for the justice and human rights standing committee, which could then include the concerns such as those raised by the member and other potential remedies.

    We have not brought this motion forward as a complete solution to any problem. We have brought it forward as the basis of some concrete legislative remedies. Instead of nebulous talk about addressing root causes, at least someone is bringing forward some specific ideas here. Let us give it to the members of the justice committee and let them determine it.

    I keep hearing the point about being patient. Yes, we must act rationally and not emotionally. We must be deliberate and not chaotic in our response, but let there be no mistake about the urgency of this fight.

    I want to quote George Will from an article he wrote last week. He said “the New York and Washington attacks were a minor overture to the cymbal-crash crescendo of violence our enemies are building toward”. He went on to say that when they get nuclear weapons they will use them, so western policy must respond to a closing window for pre-emption.

    I could not agree more. That is the next step of these merchants of violence. It is the unthinkable. It is the unimaginable use of weapons of mass destruction. This is not something where the west can slowly, ponderously, in our typical Canadian way, wait and delay and procrastinate. There is urgency in this matter. We do not know how far these evil people are from getting their hands on weapons of mass destruction. It could be weeks, months or years but we must act as though it were a matter of great urgency.

[Translation]

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    M. Benoît Sauvageau (Repentigny, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I have a few comments and some questions for the member who just made a good speech.

    In his comments, he mentioned that it was a complex situation. Alliance members, however, are trying to come up with simple solutions to a very complex situation.

    When they state that they are basing their motion on a text that is “similar in principle to the United Kingdom's Terrorism Act, 2000”, I would like to ask the member if this act contains the provision regarding the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism. As far as we know, the answer is no.

    I would therefore like to ask him if their motion is modeled on a bill, and if it takes inspiration from it, or if they are simply tinkering with words from another country's legislation.

[English]

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    Mr. Jason Kenney: Mr. Speaker, the motion is not legislation. It is simply, as all motions are, a statement of parliament's intent in a general sense in principle. It is not a replication of a statute in any other jurisdiction. It includes ideas that are included in U.K. statutes, as well as other anti-terrorism legislation.

    As to the extradition of those who are found to be associated with terrorist organizations, I am sure that is the case in the United Kingdom. I will read from one of Canada's leading immigration lawyer's, Sergio Karas, who was quoted in the National Post last week as saying “We are the laughingstock of the world because of our incredibly high acceptance rate for refugee claimants”. He also said that there was an incredibly important need for us to deport people who are lawbreakers and associated with organizations of this nature.

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    Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain (Guelph—Wellington, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for St. Paul's.

    I stand here today with great sadness which I know I share with all of my colleagues on every side of the House. There is no doubt that the shock and disbelief that I and every other Canadian felt in this great tragedy was totally unbelievable. Even now I do not think I really grasp it and everything that will come from it. The world did change one week ago Tuesday and it will never, ever be the same for any one of us here again.

    People in my riding of Guelph—Wellington phoned me expressing many feelings, but more than that they wanted to do something. It was a call to arms for them. They wanted to donate blood and my office helped to co-ordinate that. They wanted to give money to the Red Cross, a lot of money. Company after company wanted to donate money. The TD Bank, The Co-operators, a whole list of people, phoned my office to take part in drives. Sleeman's pledged to do a drive with John Sleeman matching the amount from that drive. The list goes on and on because my people wanted to do something. They wanted to help in any way.

    Nurses, doctors, paramedics and lay people phoned asking for their names to be provided to foreign affairs. If needed, they would drive, fly, do anything necessary to get to New York and would do any job asked of them. That is the human spirit of all of this that is alive and well in my community, as well as in many other communities across Canada. That is what being Canadian is. That is who we are. We should not lose sight of who we are.

    Today we are moving on to a phase as a result of this tragedy, part of which is the prevention of future attacks. The motion today deals with prevention. It absolutely has to be talked about and worked on and we as parliamentarians have to find better ways.

    Make no mistake, this is not a simple thing. It is complex. It is a new world for all of us and it is a world that is changing so fast and so dramatically that it is difficult to keep up. It is difficult to know where we should go. As elected leaders we must lead and, as the Prime Minister of Canada said yesterday, we must stand with our neighbours. We must.

    This is terrorism, make no mistake. This is a monster so evil that no one can comprehend the depth and limits that this can reach in any community in any country in the world. It just happened to be the United States, but it could be anywhere. Make no mistake about that. If it is not the U.S., is it Canada? Is it Finland? Is it China? Where?

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    There has to be a second part to this and that is a response. That again is indeed a tough question. So we move on to the question of future attacks and we move on to response.

    The Prime Minister said yesterday that “this was not just an attack on the United States”, this was an attack on “the values and the beliefs of free and civilized people everywhere”. He said “The world has been attacked. The world must respond”.

    We are part of that world. We must respond. This was an attack on our freedoms, on the ability to live peacefully, on the ability to live with everyone, all races, all nationalities, all religions. It was an attack on our freedom to speak, our freedom to voice our opinions, our freedom to gather with the like minded and to gather here today, which is enshrined in our Canadian constitution.

    The one thing that we cannot do is govern by fear. We must look at this and we must act, but we must do as our cabinet and our Prime Minister have been doing, that is, work with the United States and many other countries to proceed into the future and on what our response will be. We will do this.

    May I say I am glad that we have so much experience here. We have many people in the government who have been here a very long time and who have seen a great many things. This will afford us well in this new horrible street we are walking down. Make no mistake, the perpetrators must be brought to justice. They have to be, because if they are not what about next month? What about next year? Is there a guarantee? There are no guarantees. There are no guarantees either way. I am getting calls from my constituents. They are afraid. They do not know where we are going. They do not know what it means. Are we entering into war? Will there be loss of life? Will it mean that someone from Canada has to go to war, someone they know, someone's sons or daughters? What does it mean?

    I do not have all those answers today, but will say that I believe, based on the calls I have been receiving from my constituents, that they know in their heart of hearts, although there is a broad range of opinions, that there has to be a response. It has to be controlled, it has to be done with a clear, level head, but there must be action and there must be prevention.

    I believe there is agreement on that. The Prime Minister also said yesterday:

--this will be a long struggle with no easy solutions. Let us not deceive ourselves as to the nature of the threat that faces us and that this can be defeated easily or simply with one swift strike.

    It will not. It is evil. We have looked evil in the face and it is awful.

    The Prime Minister finished yesterday by saying:

     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--

    We will, Mr. Speaker.

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    Mr. Rick Casson (Lethbridge, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, a lot of people say they will remember where they were on September 11, 2001, but I think what we will remember most is the way we lived our lives before September 11 and how we lived afterward. The dramatic change that will take place is why I believe Canadians are turning to us as leaders, as parliamentarians, as their elected officials, for guidance and for some kind of signal that we are taking this matter seriously and that we want to make change in this country to make their lives safer. The motion that my party put forward today would do that.

    The member opposite has just said that we must lead, that we must respond, that citizens are turning to us for advice. I would like to ask the member what is wrong with sending the message in this resolution that we have on the floor today. What is wrong with sending that message to Canadian citizens that the government and the leaders of the country are doing something to make their everyday lives safer? Why will she not support what we have put forward today?

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    Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain: Mr. Speaker, I am prepared to send the motion to committee. I have no problem with that. I think the motion has some narrowness to it but I certainly am prepared to send it there.

    In fairness to the hon. member, I would say that he has missed a little bit of the point, which is what the Prime Minister said. Believe you me, my Prime Minister means this. If laws need to be changed they will be. If security has to be increased to protect Canadians it will be. We will act.

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    Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP): Mr. Speaker, to reiterate what my hon. colleague on the other side said, that if security needs to be reviewed or upgraded it will be, she is quite close to the transport minister, who yesterday said in the House that he does not want anyone to cancel their trips or their flights or their vacations. He wants Canadians to continue normally. However, one thing the travelling public is very concerned about is pre-boarding screening and the fact that no luggage on a domestic flight and no cargo on a domestic flight is ever X-rayed. Terrorists just have to check in baggage without worrying about pre-boarding screening. They could do the kind of damage that has already been done.

    Would the member not accept the recommendation coming out, unfortunately due to the tragic events of September 11, to ask the transport minister to review aspects of pre-boarding screening?

    For the information of members, customs agents receive a full year of intensive training before they do their job. Pre-boarding screeners in Canada receive 20 hours of training before they are allowed in front of X-ray machines at airports. That is completely unacceptable. Airports are now asking the government to accept complete responsibility for pre-boarding screening. A suggestion from our party is that all articles going onto an aircraft, including cargo and baggage, be X-rayed before that aircraft departs. Would she not agree with those recommendations?

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    Mrs. Brenda Chamberlain: Mr. Speaker, I am glad the hon. member brought this up because this morning we had a discussion on this very issue at rural caucus about the findings in the transport minister's report. We do believe as a committee that it is important to investigate and to move on things that will make it safer for the public.

    We have many mechanisms in place. Can they be better? Yes. Is there room for improvement? Yes. Will we? Yes.

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    Ms. Carolyn Bennett (St. Paul's, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, today as we look at the possible legislative remedies, it is imperative that we seek to examine the context and indeed the definitions. All last week we were numb. We said things like, it is unreal, it is a bad movie. We took calls from citizens trying to find reasons and solutions. Our big brother who sometimes was the recipient of our antipathy, who we felt sometimes bullied us or sometimes just ignored us, all of a sudden was clearly undeniably family. Suddenly American flags were on our lapels and in our windows. Our family member was under attack, as indeed was the world.

    When asked whether we are at war, we will pause. What does “at war” mean in 2001? I remember as a little girl sitting on my dad's lap and for the first time feeling the shrapnel in his neck that he had received in Holland as part of Canada's 30th Battery in World War II.

    My father-in-law, who had been shot down in the English Channel years after the Battle of Britain this week asked for a copy of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms so he could take it to the school where he will be speaking on Remembrance Day. He wants to explain about the fundamental freedoms that he had been fighting for, nation state to nation state. It is no longer that same kind of war.

    When asked last week on CBC whether we were at war, Ursula Franklin, the renowned physicist and pacifist answered, “I don't think so”. She went on to explain however that peace is not the absence of war. She knew certainly that we are not at peace. Peace to Ursula is the presence of justice. Obvious to all of us now is the profound lack of justice. As Canadians we have an overwhelming sense of wanting things to be fair. We want justice to be done. We want to feel safe, but what will it take to allow us to feel safe now in the wake of the attack on America last week? The previous gradual transformation on the concept of security has taken a quantum leap.

    Just last December, John Wright of the Library of Parliament in the paper “Conflict and Security in the Contemporary World” wrote:

    Human security holds the safety and dignity of the individual to be the primary focus. It reflects the growing belief that guaranteeing the security of states does not necessarily lead to better security for people.

    He wrote about the transformation of conflict. He stated:

    New conflicts are based more on identities, values and beliefs than on territorial defence or aggression. They are often conducted by actors with few formal or material resources. This makes the conflicts intense and difficult to resolve because values are deeply held, not divisible, and difficult to bargain away. In addition, a lack of political infrastructure often makes building, maintaining, and enforcing agreements difficult.

    The stunning magnitude of the terrorist acts of September 11 call into question our very definitions. In 1987 the Senate Special Committee on Terrorism and the Public Safety stated:

    Terrorism is the threat of use of violent criminal techniques, in concert with political and psychological actions, by a clandestine or semi-clandestine armed political faction or group with the aim of creating a climate of fear and uncertainty, wherein the ultimate target (usually one or more governments) will be coerced or intimidated into conceding the terrorists their specific demands, or some political advantage.

    On Saturday, Marcus Gee in the Globe and Mailrevised that. He said:

    Terrorism is a deliberate form of political or ideological warfare waged by fanatics with a disposition for unlimited violence. In the case of extreme religious terrorists, whether Islamic or Christian or Sikh, they are engaged in a holy war, a struggle for the fate of the world that justifies any amount of bloodshed.

    No longer are there specific demands or just the threat of violence to a specific end. There is just hatred.

    How could we have predicted this kind of planning and precision? Our definitions have changed for war, for terrorism. Our definition of peace will remain. We must seek justice. That is not vengeance or retribution. Old fashioned military aggression cannot be seen as an instrument of peace, but what do we do?

    In 1996 Wolfgang Koerner at our Library of Parliament wrote in his paper “The Democratic Deterrent to Terrorism”:

    In their attempt to deal with terrorism, democratic states are confronted with an unfortunate paradox. The very qualities that make democracies so vulnerable to terrorists are those that make them superior to other systems of government and so worth preserving.

  +-(1325)  

    He went on to say:

    When dealing with responses to terrorism, the need for the following quickly comes to mind: the co-operative exchange of intelligence data; bilateral and multilateral legal agreements; increased security at countries' entry and exit points; information on the financing of terrorism; the training of specialized personnel for rescue operations; the extension of international law to cover acts of terrorism.

    We must deal now with this problem in a comprehensive way. We know that we need more money and resources for deportation of people who have been refused Canadian citizenship, such as the millennium bomber. We now know when we go through the Tel Aviv airport that in opening our bags we have had a psychological assessment by someone who has been in an army and knows how to do that. That person is not a minimum wage worker relying on machines.

    What should we do? What should Canada do?

    On Sunday in St. Paul's I hosted two of my regular neighbourhood check-ups. We have divided the riding into 17 natural neighbourhoods. The two groups could not have been more different.

    The citizens assembled at the Bradgate Arms felt strongly that Canada should be measured and smart about the next steps. They firmly disagreed with the group from our upper village who wanted to ensure that we would give unequivocal support to whatever the Americans wanted to do.

    I thought about inclusive decision making and hoped that the best brains from around the world would be brought to the strategy.

    The most poignant intervention came from my neighbour across the street, Rob Tyrie. He had been on the 40th floor of the World Trade Center. He lived through it. He knows it was real. He knows it was not just a bad movie. He wanted to make sure that all of us knew and that I would convey to all decision makers how real it was. He wants from us a solution for the next 100 years. He agreed with the Prime Minister's words yesterday: “We must be guided by a commitment to do what works in the long run, not by what makes us feel better in the short run”.

    He was extraordinarily convincing in his argument that the perpetrators had spent six years planning this assault on our civilized world. If it takes six years to ensure that it can never happen again, he will feel well served by our government and the coalition it is building. We must do what works, not what makes us feel better for a minute.

    He wants us to make sure that we are not acting in hatred. He is begging us to protect our multicultural society where we will all feel safe and secure.

    Rob had a co-worker with him in New York whose first name was Mazhar and his middle name Islam. Rob wants to make sure that his friend will not be a victim of backlash based on race.

    As the Prime Minister said yesterday, the terrorists win when they export their hatred.

    He asked for a national response to the trauma that we have all felt and that some like Rob and the 26 members of his team that were in Manhattan, four in the tower and 20 in harm's way, get appropriate help.

    We as Canadians have developed great programs in post-traumatic stress syndrome because of the bravery of Romeo Dallaire. We need to make sure that these programs are available and all health professionals are taught how to recognize it and how to provide the best possible treatment for all victims of trauma and abuse.

    Last night Ursula Franklin called upon me as a physician, someone who is trained in healing and well being. We should look upon our situation as an enormous injury, an infection. She wants us to help build up the antibodies, the antibodies of justice and caring.

    We must cultivate the antibodies. We must work to create the body politic that resists infection. We need to find interventions that produce resistance. We need an effective immune system in every part of this tiny planet.

    Hatred is virulent. It is learned. It is like an acquired affection. It should not be compared to a cancer. There is no gene for hatred.

    We must commit to improving the caring, education and justice that will immunize the world against the collective weakness that allows terrorism to flourish. We must begin with our children, the children in Northern Ireland, in the Middle East, in Bosnia.

    We must work to support good government around the world which is fair, transparent and takes people seriously. We must use our brains and our technology to deal with this modern lack of justice. We must remember as we seek a solution that will last 100 years, that we ensure that our sons and daughters and grandchildren will live to see it.

    My son put it best: we are all just earthlings and we have to learn how to share this rock.

    It is now the time for all like-minded nations to work together to make a safe planet for all of us. We must urgently move forward to effect worldwide the presence of justice, a true peace.

+-

    Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have noted the various speeches by the Liberal members. they talk about a single perpetrator, a perpetrator for the World Trade Center and the Pentagon attacks.

    We are in a situation where terrorists who have not yet committed acts against Canada or the United States are planning and preparing. As a result we are looking at attacking all terrorism. Whether or not the act has been committed yet, they have done the preparation and they intend to commit the act. It would seem to me that is what legislation and our actions have to address.

    Could the hon. member comment on whether she agrees that the scope is much larger than simply identifying the perpetrators of the WTC and the Pentagon attacks?

  +-(1330)  

+-

    Ms. Carolyn Bennett: Mr. Speaker, I agree. When we look at the consensus of opinion of what we have to do, we have to be able to get intelligent information about all perpetrators and all with those kinds of ideals and goals. It is important that we have the ability to track who is raising the money and where it is going.

    It is important that we co-operate around the world in all of these ways. Some of the international agreements that we have signed have committed Canada to do that. When we look at the International convention for the suppression of financing of terrorism, when we look at the things that Canada has signed on to, it is important that we do this in an international way. As the Prime Minister said, if we need laws to be strengthened to get to that end, I hope that is something the justice committee will look at.

+-

    Mr. Howard Hilstrom: Mr. Speaker, I have a specific question. The member has been briefed by ministers and by the Prime Minister. She has quoted the Prime Minister quite often.

    Back in the early 1980s there was an organization put together by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police called SERT, the Special Emergency Response Team. It was a full time RCMP staff squad designed to take out terrorists from airplanes, and buildings if they came in with explosives, a nuclear weapon or whatever. It cost millions of dollars to put SERT in place, but it was disbanded.

    The government is saying that the RCMP has the primary responsibility for taking out terrorists, with the military being a backup. We have ended up with a situation where Canada does not have an emergency response team capable of taking out terrorists. We are talking about killing terrorists.

    Would the member ensure that her ministers address this issue? Can we take action today if in downtown Ottawa a terrorist group were to set up and had a bomb ready to go off? Who would take care of that situation immediately? It will not be the emergency response teams of the Ottawa city police or the RCMP. I was on those squads and they are not capable of taking care of that situation.

+-

    Ms. Carolyn Bennett: Mr. Speaker, the answer has two parts. One is that in the traditional tasks of SERT it would never presume that the person wanted to die. We have a very different situation.

    I am interested. The member from Nepean who is presenting the proposal for a foreign intelligence gathering agency has an interesting concept. No longer will an organization that only has a mandate to do domestic work be effective in the world as we know it today.

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with my colleague from Nanaimo--Cowichan. It has been one week ago today and how the world has changed.

    I walked into a colleague's office in Ottawa. It was my first stop of the day and his assistant asked me if I heard what was happening in New York. As we watched the television he said that two planes had hit the World Trade Center. We immediately knew this was not a coincidence and that something was happening that no one had ever foreseen.

    As events unfolded, work ground to a standstill. We heard that people had started to evacuate the Centre Block. Other people working on the Hill left for home, not sure how vulnerable we might be in the capital of Canada, just to the north of what had happened in New York.

    Then the second tower of the World Trade Center collapsed like something in a movie. We knew that thousands of innocent lives had been snuffed out in the span of just a few seconds.

    When I was much younger, my husband was mowing the lawn on a long June night. I went to bed and when I woke up the next morning he was not in bed. I found him outside, dead of a heart attack. I have some idea of the grief and the shock that some of the people last week experienced, but what happened to my husband was an act of nature, something that is at least comprehensible.

    What happened to thousands of people in New York city, including Canadians, had no comprehensible reason. It was a simple act of slaughter of innocent people driven by hatred and a love of destruction. That is something completely incomprehensible to us, to the families, to the loved ones and friends of the people who are not with us today but who were alive just a week ago.

    Since that time I have visited the U.S. embassy in Ottawa and saw the whole front of its metal railing stuffed with masses of flowers, cards, posters, candles, and messages of condolences, concern, sympathy and prayers. They were reaching out to the people who were affected by this terrible tragedy in New York, including Canadians reaching out to their friends and their neighbours across the border.

    I have had, as have other members of parliament, an outpouring of e-mails and calls from people asking how they can help, what they can do, how they can make sense of and contribute toward rectifying this terrible situation. People are groping for some kind of meaning and some kind of focus after a tragedy that was never before contemplated.

    Canadians are also concerned about what can happen in the future. What does this mean for the future? Will the people who have no morality, no human feeling, who caused the death of these innocent people, stop at this or will there be other targets and deaths?

    People have concerns about our security system. Canadians do not want to be vulnerable. We do not want to be at risk. We want to know that people in charge of our safety are doing their jobs and that we can trust them to look after our interests. Unfortunately what we know has not been very reassuring.

  +-(1335)  

    Here are some of the troubling facts that have been reported recently. A secret CSIS report, compiled in May, shows that terrorist groups from around the world are extremely active in Canada. It lists by name and description the organizations in this country and how they are operating within Canada's borders. It states that these groups are raising money for their activities on Canadian soil.

    The report describes the Algerian national who was arrested in December 1999 trying to cross from Canada into the U.S. in a car carrying enough explosives to blow up a large building. It also states that there is evidence supplied by the French police and by Interpol that money is leaving Canada and going to terrorist bases in Algeria.

    It speaks of a retired immigration official who worked for 31 years with immigration and was one of 10 elite immigration control officers in the world who says that our immigration officials never got their act together. He also claims that groups known internationally for heroin trafficking and links to companies with operations in Canada have shipped missile technology and biological warfare components from Canada to North Korea, Pakistan, Iraq and Iran. However, the study that detailed all this was terminated in 1997 with an order to destroy all the files.

    Last February, Canada signed the international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism, but as of yet we have passed no law to actually put that agreement into effect.

    There are other troubling circumstances that have come to our attention. A program on CBC radio last Saturday called The House, featured the vice-president of the Canadian Association for Security Intelligence Studies,who served at senior levels of the public service for 34 years dealing with international relations and intelligence matters. He said that about a year ago and very quietly our Canadian government decided to export crypto analytical equipment to foreign buyers.

    This is highly technical machinery for encoding and protecting information which we handed over to terrorists. It would allow them to communicate secretly and therefore allow them to carry out operations such as what happened one week ago, with success. He also stated that we have been making a series of errors and that Canada for far too long has been sitting on institutions that are basically second World War II institutions, cold war institutions. Now is the time to rethink them.

    There was also a comment made by Major General Lewis MacKenzie who served in the gulf war. He stated that the federal government had failed to fund the military and had left the country unable to contribute anything to this crisis other than a token force.

    The inadequacy of Canada's security system has been known for some time. Our motion today helps the House take the leadership that our country needs at this critical hour. It addresses the protection of the public in a thoughtful, practical and effective way.

    All speakers in the House have said that we value democracy, freedom, peace, order and good government. When we value things we protect them. They are important to us and we mean business. Now is not the time to equivocate and falter; now is the time to act. I urge members of the House to support the motion before us today.

  +-(1340)  

+-

    Mr. John Cannis (Scarborough Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was very moved by the comments of the member from the Canadian Alliance. She made some very good ones. I was very interested in listening to all the speeches, but I have to express myself and offer my comments as well.

    I have listened to this entire debate while following what has been going on in the United States of America. When this barbaric act unfolded it was not republicans versus democrats. It was not a political issue. As much as I am encouraged and moved by some of the stories I am hearing, I certainly do not want to see it politicized.

    I will explain what I am referring to. The member made a comment that nothing was being done. That is unfair because Canada did sign the international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism. Bill C-16 exists and we owe it to Canadians to make clear at least that Bill C-16 addresses that issue directly.

    It is also very important to indicate that $1.5 billion in additional moneys was added. I am reaching out to the members of the Canadian Alliance and the Conservative Party, urging them that we do not politicize this system but that we put our heads together and move forward on it.

  +-(1345)  

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy: Mr. Speaker, this is not a partisan issue. The safety of Canadians is not the purvey of any political party, but in our system it is only the government that can take the concrete steps that are needed to protect our security because it has the majority and it holds the levers of power and decision making.

    As we have attempted to do today with our motion, we can help by entering into a debate, but only the government can act. It is true that the government signed the international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism.

    It promised to pass a law making it a criminal offence to collect or donate money for terrorism, but the government has not tabled such a law. Instead it proposed a more modest bill last March, one that would take away charitable tax status from organizations that channel donations toward terrorist groups.

    If the member is serious about the government's commitment to protecting our security and to combating terrorism, I urge him to actually put into law what our government signed in that convention.

+-

    Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for her comments. The analogy she gave us of her own situation relative to this is very appropriate and apt, and I compliment the member for having the courage to bring that forward.

    The hon. member knows that her party has presented today an opposition day motion that is votable. I will read the first four sentences. I know it has been done in the House before, but it is very cogent to the question I wish to ask her.

    That this House call upon the government to introduce anti-terrorism legislation similar in principle to the United Kingdom's Terrorism Act, 2000, and that such legislation provide for:

    And the list goes on. I was wondering if the hon. member has had an opportunity to read last year's report of Abid Hussain, the special rapporteur of the UN commission on human rights. He expressed particular concern about the effects of this provision on journalistic freedom.

    After expression of alarm over the terrorism bill he recommended that the British government repeal all provisions which were not in conformity with international treaties and standards, in particular emergency laws like the prevention of terrorism act which have a chilling effect on the right of freedom, opinion and expression. Does the hon. member want to support this bill now in the context of its impact on a lot of other victims?

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy: Mr. Speaker, Great Britain is one of the countries that has dealt very rigorously and resolutely with the issue of terrorism and is further ahead on the curve than Canada. It has legislation that has now been in place for over a year. It is legislation that we can look to for some precedent material. It is not perfect legislation and that is why, in response to my friend's concern, we suggest similar legislation.

    Where it has been found or thought to be defective, we will simply not enact those provisions. We can use the legislation as a good precedent for something that we should and could do here.

+-

    Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo—Cowichan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, a week ago as we sat glued to our television sets, all of us were horrified by the events that took place in Washington and New York City. None of us will forget the image of that airliner flying into the World Trade Center. As we all try to make sense of those events, surely we would agree that what we saw was a the personification of evil itself.

    I believe we are aware that along with great good in the world there is also great evil. Long before the events of last Tuesday took shape that evil began as a thought, or an attitude or a belief in the minds of those terrorists. What we saw was unfortunately the logical outcome of it.

    We cannot grab hold of an evil thought any more than we can grab hold of a loving attitude. They are not something that we can place in our hand and say that this is evil or this is good. So what we are talking about, from my point of view, is a spiritual reality.

    Evil is a spiritual condition of the human heart and at moments of great national tragedy it is logical for us to ask the spiritual questions. Why did this evil occur? Where did it come from? How can we eliminate it?

    As our citizens grappled with these questions, tens of thousands of them came to Parliament Hill last Friday where we paid tribute to the other thousands who died or were affected by the terrorist attacks. We came with these questions on our minds and we were looking for a word of hope in a seemingly hopeless situation. However, there was no words of hope for our people as a nation. My own personal word of hope came from watching similar services in Washington and London.

    I know we live in a pluralistic society and that we are so politically correct in this country that we do not want to offend those who may have other beliefs, but the vast majority of Canadians believe in the same God. We may call this higher power God or Jehovah or Allah, but he is the same God worshipped by Jews, Christians and Muslims.

    Why then in this tragic situation would the leadership of our nation, namely the Governor General and the Prime Minister of Canada, not even call out to this higher power to provide the help, the comfort and the hope that we could not provide for ourselves? It saddens me greatly that our nation has become so secular and so politically correct that we cannot even name the name of God publicly.

    A scripture recognized by Jews, Christians and Muslims alike says “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord”. We must ask ourselves, can we truly be blessed in this nation of Canada if our leadership will not even recognize and call out to God even in times of great national crisis? When will we learn that we are not alone in this universe and that the God who created us still wishes to intervene in our lives?

    I would like to take this opportunity to express my condolences and prayers for the victims, the rescuers and indeed every one of us who has been so affected by these bold acts of tyranny and hate. I have heard from many of my constituents in Nanaimo--Cowichan who expressed their sorrow, their outrage and their support and solidarity for our American friends in this instance. Like other Canadians all across the country, they have lined up to donate blood, contributed money and sought out ways to offer support.

    While many people have referred to the events of last week as being surreal or likened it to some kind of scene out of a movie, we know that we cannot go back for our world has been irrevocably changed. We cannot change what has already taken place, but we can now stand firm, first with our American friends and allies, but also with all free democracies around the world.

    This deadly assault was not merely an attack on the World Trade Center or the American people, it was an attack at the very heart of worldwide democracy. To heal the past we must grieve and mourn for our losses, but we must also learn from our past and make the necessary changes to ensure that these events and circumstances do not continue in the future.

  +-(1350)  

    Terrorism is a hideous thing. We Canadians have been very fortunate to have escaped this terrible reality in the main, but we are no longer innocents. Perhaps as many as 70 Canadians lost their lives in this awful event. Now we must consider how we can make sure that this never happens again. Unfortunately we know that as long as this evil is in the world, the world will never be completely safe. Any action we take, any law we pass will not make us safe. As I said previously, I believe that this is primarily a spiritual issue. It is a condition of the human heart and only when the human heart is changed will we be safe.

    Let us remember what terrorists' objectives are. Their intentions are to strike fear into the hearts of everyone. They intend to disrupt our way of life by scaring our children, by constantly forcing us to look over our shoulder and by disrupting our economies. I for one am not willing to accept that. I will not allow their false ideologies to affect my core values. The faith, principles and values that I live by cannot be swayed merely by someone who violently disagrees with me. I am committed to these beliefs and I will not give them up merely because someone is able to inflict so much widespread pain and suffering. We must remember that terrorists may kill the body but they cannot destroy the spirit. An idea cannot be killed, it can only be changed by a better idea.

    Let us remember that while Muslim terrorists have called for a Jihad or holy war, this is indeed an oxymoron. War is not holy. Perhaps it has been more succinctly said that war is hell. Let no one be fooled by the ravings of these terrorists. No major religion of the world ever calls for violence as an answer.

    There have been accusations and reports that Canada has and is being used as a haven for terrorists. The recent Kelly report from the Senate states that Canada has already been used as a haven for terrorists. We must take steps to ensure that this infiltration stops. There can be no room for debate on the matter. The government must act decisively. It has often been stated in the past few days but the statements bear repeating: “We are at war with terrorism”.

    I would urge the government to listen to the opposition parties in the House. I would urge it to listen to its own members and listen to Canadians. They want action and they want action now. This action may mean changing our old laws. For instance, if it became clear that Osama bin Laden was the leader behind this awful act and for some reason we found him in Canada, would Canada extradite him to the United States to face punishment for his deeds or would we refuse to do so because he might face capital punishment in that country? This is the kind of tough decision that the government may be faced with. The question I ask is this: Is the government prepared to make tough decisions in the face of terrorism?

    I remind the government that time and time again the official opposition has called for the bolstering of our defence resources. We made loud calls for changes to our refugee and immigration policy, not to keep legitimate claimants out of Canada but rather to ensure that those who would destroy this great country are not allowed to stay.

    While the official opposition has made calls for changes to border security, tightening immigration clearances and the provision of adequate resources to our armed domestic forces, the government has often resorted to name calling and false bravado. Such noise will no longer be tolerated by Canadians. Will the government now recognize that past policies have not and are not working? Canadians want to see changes now and now is the time for us to work together as elected representatives and put forward new legislation that will fully address these issues.

    I want to say again that any law or action will not guarantee the end of terrorism. All nations around the world, including ours, must recognize that we are fighting a spiritual battle. As the Apostle Paul says in the New Testament “We are not fighting against flesh and blood but against dark spiritual powers in the heavenly realms”.

    Let us not allow this evil to overtake us either becoming like the terrorists themselves and seeking only revenge, but let us resolve to seek the will of the Creator whose purpose in the beginning was to make a world that he could look out over and say “It is good”.

    May God help all of us by his wisdom to make the right decisions in the days that lie ahead.


+-Statements by Members

[S.O. 31]

*   *   *

  +-(1355)  

[English]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. John Richardson (Perth--Middlesex, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, last Friday the people of Perth--Middlesex joined Canadians from coast to coast in a national day of mourning for the many thousands of victims in last week's monstrous terrorist attacks in the United States.

    Some of the victims were Canadians. We grieve their loss just as we do for all families and victims involved in this cowardly act of terror. We also owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the courageous men and women, including those from Canada who are risking their lives to rescue and treat survivors.

    I would like to express gratitude to my constituents and all Canadians for their immediate outpouring of assistance offered in these crucial and critical times. I know that Canada will stand behind America and that it will offer whatever resources, aid, comfort and support that the Americans require.

    Let it symbolize how as Canadians we stand proudly and defiantly alongside our American compatriots.

    God bless Canada and America.

*   *   *

  +-(1400)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, one week ago today the world as we knew it changed dramatically. The unthinkable shattered thousands of innocent lives, including Canadian lives. Without warning, the safety and security we value so much as a mature democracy became much less certain.

    Many citizens have expressed their profound disappointment at the government's extremely weak response to last week's horrific events. It has failed to lay out any clear plan of action to ensure better protection of the safety of Canadians. Experts have been raising the alarm about gaping holes in our security measures for years.

    The escalation of the terrorist threat should be met with a decisive and competent response by those elected to protect our interests and our well-being. We can no longer afford to have a government asleep at the switch when it comes to this nation's security.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, following the horrible events of September 11, many of my constituents have telephoned or visited my office to sign a book of condolences and to share their grief with our American friends.

    In response I have written to the American Ambassador to Canada Paul Cellucci on behalf of my constituents of Brampton Centre to extend sincere sympathies and regrets to the families and friends of the victims of this tragic terrorist attack on the United States of America.

    Canada and the U.S. share more than the world's longest undefended border. We share a common view of a free and democratic world that will stand the onslaught of evil no matter where it might originate. We also share in the pain and suffering of the victims and pray that their families will find the strength to persevere in the absence of their loved ones.

    God bless America. God bless Canada.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Paul Bonwick (Simcoe—Grey, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the residents of Simcoe--Grey, I extend sincere condolences to our neighbours in the United States.

    A tragedy of this magnitude touches each and every one of us. In my riding we are still hopeful that one of our own will be found in the coming hours.

    The outpouring of emotion has been enormous. We have experienced literally hundreds of expressions of sympathy and equally as important, offers of support. Whether it be through candlelight vigils or the hundreds of constituents who have travelled to my offices to sign a book of condolence, our hearts and prayers have been with our American friends.

    We have no closer neighbour than the United States. Quite simply, our American neighbours are family, and it is in this regard I am confident in offering our support to our Prime Minister when he stated “together we will defy and defeat the threat that terrorism poses to all civilized nations”.

    On behalf of the residents of Simcoe--Grey, we will stand with the Americans in their hour of need.

    God bless Canada and God bless the United States of America.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Bryon Wilfert (Oak Ridges, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the residents in my riding of Oak Ridges, I would like to convey our deepest sympathies and prayers to the families of the horrific events of September 11 and to the American people.

    I would also like to express our gratitude to every Canadian who has contributed to the relief effort, from giving blood, to donating money, to being part of the relief efforts directly.

    Words cannot convey, and it is difficult to comprehend the evil that launched the cowardly attacks on thousands of innocent people.

    In our response as a nation we must be prepared to participate in the struggle against the forces of international terrorism, to strike at their financial backers, to increase and support our security intelligence apparatus and, where appropriate, respond through enhanced legislation to meet this threat.

    We began the examination yesterday and it continues today on perhaps one of the most important debates that we will ever have. In waging a war against terrorism, we cannot forget that this is not a battle against community or faith. We must balance our needs for security with our belief in freedom, justice and tolerance.

*   *   *

+-Tourism

+-

    Mrs. Cheryl Gallant (Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, American confidence in Canada's borders is at an all time low. Before last week's tragedy the Liberal policy of harassing American sportsmen was driving away tourism dollars from rural communities.

    Tourist outfitters from across Ontario have been inundating my office with complaints that anglers and hunters are being detained for several hours. These Americans have been holidaying in Canada for generations and are a welcome financial benefit wherever they stay.

    Customs and immigration border officers should be directed to screen for suspected criminals and terrorists instead of bullying law-abiding Americans.

    It is ironic that this government spends millions on tourism ads in U.S. publications then turns the same people targeted in the ads back at the border. Better yet, it should turn the hundreds of millions of dollars that are currently wasted on the long gun registry over to the RCMP to let them do their real job of keeping Canadians safe.

*   *   *

  +-(1405)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Alex Shepherd (Durham, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, a week ago today we witnessed the horrors and devastation meted out against innocent and unsuspecting peoples, a surreal happening made real by the countless stories of heroism in the face of tyranny.

    All the people of Durham, especially those who are the followers of Islam, were shocked and now they are outraged. It is clear that we have to stamp out the insidious cancer that has grown within the midst of the world community.

    Some talk about the rule of international law but what rules have the perpetrators used? What respect have they had for the common human condition? We need new rules in our war against this atrocity.

    It is clear that some of our petrodollars have been diverted to feed the appetite of this evil. We must be diligent in finding the source of financing and cut its umbilical cord. All nations must work in co-operation to achieve this goal. The future of our democracy depends upon it.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Children

+-

    Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ): Mr. Speaker, as the result of last Tuesday's events in the United States, whole families were torn apart. In this context, my thoughts turn especially to the children of the victims of the attack.

    Thousands of children are now orphans. Their life has changed for ever. We were all shaken by the events, but the effects of these acts of terror on children are much more widespread than we think.

    Our children too are affected by the situation. We need to listen to them, comfort them and reassure them. We must make sure they are not motivated by rage and a desire for vengance. It is our duty to show them that dialogue is preferable to violence, and justice to vengeance.

    To all children in the United States, Canada and Quebec and throughout the world, our thoughts are with you, because you are the finest symbol of life.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Heroism

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Mississauga South, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in the aftermath of the horrific tragedy in the United States on September 11, we all have many disturbing images seared into our memories. At the same time, however, we have seen the heroic response of public safety officers, particularly firefighters. While victims fled, these men and women rushed in to save lives. As many as 200 firefighters lost their lives in the line of duty. Furthermore, they continue to work today in a toxic environment which itself represents a significant risk to their long term health.

    The House of Commons has often acknowledged their heroism and special contribution. We have considered a public safety officers compensation fund for the benefit of families of firefighters who lose their lives in the line of duty. We have considered improvements to legislation guiding the transportation of dangerous goods and we have considered improvements to the CPP accrual rate so that they can earn an appropriate pension entitlement.

    It is my hope that as opportunities arise the House will support appropriate initiatives to acknowledge our firefighters. I hope all hon. members will join me today in paying special tribute to the firefighters and all public safety officers who serve the public so bravely on a daily basis.

*   *   *

+-Ovarian Cancer

+-

    Mr. John Cummins (Delta—South Richmond, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday, while the House was quite rightly considering the course of the nation in the wake of the terrorist attack in the United States, I attended the launching of a bike tour from Ottawa to Toronto called Miles for Megan. The tour is to help raise awareness and funds for the fight against ovarian cancer.

    Megan Rodger was 18 when she passed away last November because of this disease.

    The fundraising tour, organized by Megan's Mom and Dad, will, over eight days, pass through Cornwall, Brockville, Kingston, Trenton, Belleville, Peterborough, Oshawa and Markham, finishing at Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto on September 25.

    Ovarian cancer is a family disease that attacks our wives, daughters, mothers and sisters, but it can be beaten, as evidenced by my colleague from Saskatoon--Rosetown--Biggar, herself a survivor of ovarian cancer.

    I ask my colleagues and the residents of these fine Ontario communities to support the Miles for Megan ride and the 2,500 Canadian women this disease will strike this year.

*   *   *

  +-(1410)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the people of the riding of Halton, I rise to offer our condolences to the American people and our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the victims of last Tuesday's attack.

    It is difficult to comprehend the enormity of the act. Many constituents of Arab dissent and/or Muslim faith have expressed to me their profound horror and sadness, not only at this act of terror but also at the hijacking of their faith by extremists.

    This is not a war between nation states or religious beliefs. It is a war where the enemy tries to cloak hatred and vengeance in the Islamic teachings of justice and peace.

    Throughout the past week we have been filled with emotions ranging from sadness to outrage, to anger and to fear, but we cannot allow these emotions to rule us.

    I call on all Canadians to grieve together over this horrific act and to remain united in our fight against terror.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP): Mr. Speaker, Canadians of all faiths and backgrounds grieve the awful loss of life in the tragedy of September 11. As we come to terms with the enormity of what has taken place, there is also a quiet and growing resolve to reject solutions that will engulf our planet in violence and militarism.

    We must stand firm against the persecution of innocent people. Even today we hear of attacks against people in the Arab and Muslim communities. We are told it is our freedom and our democracy that is under attack, and that we must strike back, yet surely we must examine whether this freedom is also another's oppression.

    Canada's response must be multilateral and within international law. Justice and security for all people who have been denied basic human dignity, whether in the Middle East or elsewhere, must become the real objective for freedom and democracy.

    On this day of Rosh Hashanah we call on Canada to lead a global effort to truly make the world a safer and more just place.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Rescue Workers

+-

    Ms. Christiane Gagnon (Québec, BQ): Mr. Speaker, with the tragic events of last week, hundreds of people have been working without a break in the hope of finding survivors.

    I would like to pay tribute to them today and to honour their courage and their determination to save as many lives as possible. People the world over did not hesitate to volunteer to help in the search under trying conditions.

    Tribute, but there is sorrow too, for those who were on the spot immediately after and who were buried in the rubble of the World Trade Center. Several hundred rescue workers, firefighters and police officers thus lost their lives in their eagerness to save others.

    Despite these deadly acts of terrorism, our confidence is bolstered by society's expression of values of solidarity, compassion and hope.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Candace Salmon

+-

    Mr. Andy Savoy (Tobique—Mactaquac, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the horrific terrorist acts of last Tuesday have affected Canadians in an unprecedented manner. In my riding of Tobique--Mactaquac, bordering the state of Maine, our relationship with the U.S. has been particularly close.

    Tuesday's tragedy has been met with an outpouring of sympathy and solidarity, the likes of which have not been seen for decades.

    I want to make particular mention of Candace Salmon, a grade 12 student from Woodstock, New Brunswick. A witness to the horrific acts on television, she felt moved to do her part.

    On her own initiative, Candace collected over $300 on her lunch hours, purchased flowers and condolence cards and presented them to border guards and high school students at Houlton, Maine.

    The remaining proceeds were then donated to the American Red Cross for relief efforts. So touched were the students and border guards by Candace's act of generosity that some openly wept.

    Candace's noble act exemplifies what is best about the human spirit, and it is my hope that in the weeks and months to come, this spirit will prevail.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou—Antigonish—Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, people in Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough and across Canada continue to show sympathy and support for Americans and international victims of the despicable act of terrorism one week ago today.

    As Canada deals with its grief and investigates our own vulnerabilities to terrorist attacks, it is obvious we need a strong legislative response to provide CSIS, the RCMP, immigration and our military with the resources needed to preserve safety and sanctity for Canadians.

    These are extraordinary times and Canadians need to be guided by the leadership in government. Before long Canadian troops may be involved in what would be an arduous sustained conflict against terrorist cells or states. Canadians expect their government to instill public confidence by clearly stating its intentions and plan of action.

    I call on the Liberal government to face head on the challenges of increased public safety measures. We need to legislate to protect Canadian citizens and to prevent and prosecute terrorism wherever we find it.

    The PCDR coalition calls for immediate increases in resources and counter terrorist efforts. We must also review immigration policy to ensure refuge for legitimate applicants but close the doors to those who endanger freedom and security at home and abroad.

*   *   *

  +-(1415)  

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Lynn Myers (Waterloo—Wellington, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the events of last week have saddened all of us. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those whose lives have been so tragically changed.

    This act of terrorism sought to tear us apart. While we all have vowed not to let that happen, it is unfortunate that there are those in our own nation who have allowed it to happen through misguided attacks on their fellow Canadians.

    Reports of death threats, vandalism and arson against various ethnic and faith communities in the days following last Tuesday's attacks serves only to acknowledge that terrorism works. Any person who uses fear and terror as a weapon is a terrorist. It is clear that terrorism exists in all societies, in all races, in all religions and in all nationalities.

    Our fight against terrorism can start at home by dealing harshly and swiftly with those who would cowardly attack their fellow Canadians in the wake of last Tuesday's horrific events. There can be no place for racism in our vow against terrorism. If after September 11, 2001 we judge our fellow Canadians differently based on their race or ethnicity then we have let terrorism--


+-ORAL QUESTION PERIOD

[Oral Questions]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I understand that U.S. president George Bush has requested that the Prime Minister come to Washington next week to discuss anti-terrorist strategies. We hope the Prime Minister will be able to present a clear agenda to enhance the safety and security of Canadians and indeed of all North Americans.

    Could the Prime Minister tell Canadians whether at that meeting he will be able to report that his government supported the motion to bring in comprehensive, anti-terrorist legislation similar to that which exists in the United States and in the United Kingdom?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will report to the president that the Canadian people are very united in what the government is doing. No one likes to hear the opposition trying to score political points all the time in a situation like this one.

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we are concerned about terrorists scoring hits on Canadian or United States soil.

    The British prime minister was ahead of our government in bringing forward comprehensive anti-terrorist legislation. The British prime minister was ahead of our government in committing to stand shoulder to shoulder with the United States in committing troops to any NATO mission in the war against terrorism. The British prime minister was ahead of our government in recalling parliament to discuss our response in the war against terrorism.

    Could the Prime Minister tell us on which front in the war on terrorism is he prepared to take the initiative?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was talking to Canadians hours after the disaster. I was at my desk minutes after it. All the ministers and their departments were involved. To show that we would not be frightened by terrorists we decided to hold the first meeting with the press on the Hill. When we decided to have a day of mourning last Friday, 100,000 Canadians stood with the government and with their American friends.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the citizens of this country need strong anti-terrorism legislation, which will protect them and which will provide the police and security services with all the tools they need to prevent barbaric deeds.

    A motion that would give us such tools is now before the House.

    Will the Prime Minister give us an assurance that he will allow government members to vote freely on this motion this afternoon?

  +-(1420)  

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, a few moments ago, the Leader of the Opposition refused to give his agreement to a motion that would have had the support of all parties in the House, for no other reason than that he wished to score political points against the government.

    We already have bills before parliament. We have signed all the international anti-terrorism agreements and, this morning, the Minister of Justice gave a speech in the House making it clear that the government was leading the way in terms of anti-terrorism measures.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canada is failing to meet its international obligations to fight terrorism. The Liberal government is ignoring two key international obligations: the suppression of terrorist bombings and the suppression of the financing of terrorists.

    Why is the minister and the government compromising the safety and security of Canadians and our allies by ignoring these commitments?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I pointed out yesterday to the hon. member, we are not ignoring these commitments. We intend to ratify and implement both of the conventions he has mentioned.

    As the Prime Minister has already pointed out, we are a leader in the fight against world terrorism. We have signed, ratified and implemented 10 of the UN conventions that lead the fight around this globe in relation to terrorism.

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canadians are outraged that terrorists in Canada are legally permitted to raise money for bombings abroad. The Liberal government refuses to implement the tough and comprehensive 1995 Ottawa declaration.

    Why will the Liberal government not bring forward the necessary legislation to help our security services protect Canadians here and abroad?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have made clear in the House, we intend to ratify and implement both the convention on terrorist bombing and the convention on the suppression of terrorist financing.

    I could not have been plainer yesterday when I indicated that we would be introducing criminal law in the very near future to ensure that we could implement both those conventions.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, during yesterday's debate, the Prime Minister said that the world should prepare itself for a long struggle against terrorism, one in which patience and wisdom are essential. This is admittedly a responsible attitude.

    To give the public a better idea of what to expect, will the Prime Minister tell us specifically how patience and wisdom will guide Canada's actions in the anti-terrorism fight now taking shape?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Saint-Maurice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. leader of the Bloc Quebecois for his responsible attitude in this connection.

    Right now, we are in consultations with the United States government, with leaders of NATO nations and with other heads of government.

    I had an opportunity to speak with a number of them, who called me seeking Canada's opinion. Everyone wants to find a solution to the terrible threat posed by international terrorism to our societies.

    We must work together, but we must not allow those who committed last week's unacceptable and reprehensible deeds to go unpunished. We will help in the effort to find them and to bring them before the courts.

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, as he came out of the cabinet meeting this morning, the Prime Minister announced he would be going to Washington next week to meet President Bush, an invitation that could not be better timed, on the heels of yesterday's debate.

    When he meets the U.S. president, does the Prime Minister plan to stress the need for all countries, including the United States, to take his approach to terrorism, one based on patience, wisdom and responsibility?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think that is what the U.S. government is doing at the moment, because the attack occurred a week ago, and I think that up to now it has shown considerable control in the face of a situation of such gravity for Americans.

    I intend to discuss a long term approach with the president, as I have done with other heads of government, and not try to do something sensational that could have disastrous effects over the long term for all the people in the world.

  +-(1425)  

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ): Mr. Speaker, yesterday, in response to a question by the leader of the Bloc Quebecois, the Prime Minister did not shut the door to the possibility of changes in the role of the House of Commons in reaching decisions relating to the response to the acts of terrorism.

    Given the significance of the decisions that will have to be made eventually, and given the necessity to reassure our fellow citizens, I am asking the Prime Minister whether he will commit to submitting to parliament, for debate and a vote, any major military, diplomatic or financial decision that will be made in connection with the events in the United States.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, under such circumstances we have always had debates in the House of Commons, and will continue to do so, but the government has to assume its responsibilities under all circumstances.

    Obviously, when I speak to heads of government, I have to give them the Canadian government's position. I cannot always refer every decision to the House of Commons, but a debate such as the one held yesterday is very worthwhile. An oral question period such as we are having today, when carried out in a responsible manner as it is at the present time by the Bloc Quebecois, is very worthwhile.

    We are going to continue to inform the opposition parties and the members of the government of the actions the government plans to take.

+-

    Mr. Michel Gauthier (Roberval, BQ): Mr. Speaker, continuing in a constructive manner, the prime minister of France has just stated that “If it becomes necessary to make commitments on behalf of France, these could naturally not be made by the executive without consulting the national assembly and the Senate”.

    Could the Prime Minister not take his inspiration from this attitude and profit from the strength parliament would give to him in the taking of the decisions that are going to be made in coming days?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we have already had a consultation in the House of Commons, an entire day in which each member could express his or her point of view, and we will continue to do so in future.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister said in the House that the death of innocent civilians was a price he was willing to pay to fight terrorism.

    Where is the justice? Where is the logic in avenging the death of innocent civilians in the United States by killing innocent civilians in another part of the world? Does the Prime Minister not understand that adding to the body count plays directly into the hands of terrorists?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I never said that, but I will repeat that no responsible government faced with a problem like that can give an absolute guarantee that no soldiers or civilians might lose their lives.

    It is the nature of the struggle we face and we have to be responsible. I will not make an empty promise to the Canadian public like the leader of the NDP would like me to make.

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister has said that he is proud of Canada's role in creating the international criminal court, as well he should be, as well as Canadians are.

    Slobodan Milosevic today is in prison and being tried for crimes against humanity. This is a positive, concrete example of international democratic institutions at work.

    Last week's terrorist attacks are surely crimes against humanity, horrendous crimes. Will Canada once again show leadership by advocating a democratic international approach to defeating terrorism?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, if we could have the co-operation of those governmental authorities who have Mr. bin Laden within their jurisdiction to present him to a tribunal in The Hague or anywhere else, we would be happy to advocate that.

    At the moment it seems rather difficult to offer that as a solution, however, but certainly it is consistent with the policy of the Government of Canada to seek to find orderly and judicial ways to resolve matters of international importance, including ensuring there is no impunity for international crime.

  +-(1430)  

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Prime Minister told me that he was “not aware at this time of a cell known to the police to be operating in Canada with the intention of carrying out terrorism in Canada or elsewhere”.

    Jane's Intelligence Service states that al Qaeda cells have been identified in Canada. CSIS confirmed that a bin Laden-Canada connection is being investigated.

    Are Jane's and CSIS wrong? If not, has the Prime Minister now been informed of the existence of bin Laden cells operating in Canada?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I said outside the House and in the House that there is no link to any group in Canada with what happened in New York and Washington last week. That is what I said.

    Of course we know that some people in Canada are constantly being investigated by the police and CSIS in Canada and that we do not comment on these individuals in the House of Commons.

    We will let those who have the responsibility do their jobs. The best way for them to be efficient is to be able to do their jobs as they should be done.

[Translation]

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, now that the Prime Minister has admitted to the presence of terrorist cells in Canada, can he tell the House what concrete actions he plans to undertake to eradicate their presence from Canada, and when he plans to do so?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we have done our job in this area, and continue to do so. We have public officials and police officers constantly working on it.

    With the permission of the House, I would like to read a message sent to me by Senator Kelly, who chaired House of Commons committees on terrorism on two occasions under the Conservatives, and on one occasion under the Liberals.

    He writes as follows:

[English]

    A great deal of improvement has taken place over the years since our first report, and the improvements have accelerated since the current minister took office as solicitor general. The minister has taken a deep interest in security matters, and made it his business early to gain a good understanding of--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Crowfoot.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, CSIS revealed today that several years ago it advised the government that were there 350 people and 50 organizations with direct ties to terrorism.

    The Prime Minister has just suggested that luckily they were not tied to the events in the States. According to CSIS these groups and organizations are still here and operating in Canada.

    My question is for the solicitor general. Why was action not taken to arrest and prosecute individuals supporting terrorism?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my colleague is well aware I said a number of times in the House that many countries such as the United States, Great Britain, Australia, France and this country are a great attraction to terrorists. When we have the economy we have in this country it is an attraction to terrorists.

    We have security intelligence organizations like CSIS and the RCMP that work with their counterparts to make sure that this country remains a safe place to live.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, CSIS Director Ward Alcock warned the Senate committee studying terrorism that there were people living in Canada who had aided and abetted terrorists involved in the attack on the World Trade Center back in 1993.

    Again I ask a question of the solicitor general. Why did the government not take action at that time?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, when information is given to any law enforcement agency of an individual organization that has broken the law, it is taken care of by the RCMP or other police forces. That is what is done. It is a security intelligence gathering agency that keeps this country a safe place to live.

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, today, terrorism is international in nature and in scope, but unlike war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity, terrorism is not a crime under international law.

    Does the government support the idea of making terrorism an international crime and placing it under the jurisdiction of the international criminal court?

  +-(1435)  

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we will continue to support the creation of the international criminal court. This is one of Canada's foreign policy objectives. However, at this point, we also have an obligation to try to ensure that nations can live in safety.

    For the time being, our priority is to identify the best available means of accomplishing this task.

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, one does not exclude the other. I ask the minister whether the government is prepared to submit this proposal to the United Nations and to lead an international campaign to give the international criminal court jurisdiction over the perpetrators of terrorist attacks.

    What is required is a coalition covering all aspects, and it seems to us that this aspect is fundamental.

    Will the minister give such a commitment?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we agree that it is necessary to find ways of dealing with international crimes, even crimes of terrorism.

    This is perhaps a crime which is a bit more complex, and international discussions must focus on identifying the means available for implementing a system making a terrorist act a crime against humanity.

*   *   *

[English]

+-National Defence

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday the solicitor general boasted in the House about putting $1.5 billion into the national security budget. What he neglected to tell Canadians was that the CSIS budget was reduced by 10% over the last four years and the RCMP budget barely increased by a paltry 4% in the same period.

    I would like to ask the solicitor general, are those facts worth bragging about in the House?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have said a number of times, we have put $1.5 billion into the public safety envelope. It is a lot of money, with $584 million to the RCMP. The director of CSIS has indicated quite publicly that he has the funds to do his job and to make sure with the help of the RCMP that this country remains one of the safest countries in the world to live in.

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley—Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, those are total budget dollars. The minister neglected to talk about the reduction over the last four years in CSIS.

    In 1999 a special Senate committee on security and intelligence stated that Canada still remained a venue of opportunity for terrorist groups, but in that period the government saw it necessary to reduce CSIS funding, to starve the RCMP out of effectiveness and to eliminate the ports police.

    How does the solicitor general defend those kinds of reductions or even have the gall to brag about it?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, all I can do is respond to my hon. colleague as I did previously.

    The fact of the matter is that we did put $1.5 billion into the public safety envelope in the last budget. That is not to mention the $115 million to improve CPIC, our database that is the envy of all police forces around the world, and millions and millions of dollars other than that.

    We have made sure and will continue to make sure that this is one of the safest countries in the world.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Air Safety

+-

    Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ): Mr. Speaker, recent revelations on the quality of airport security prompted the minister to state yesterday that there was nothing scandalous about an 18% failure rate, and that in fact this was good news.

    Will the minister acknowledge that, given the recent events in New York City, an 18% security failure rate is unacceptable and can he tell us what measures he plans to take to remedy this totally unacceptable situation?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, naturally we feel we must attain a 100% success rate. We carry out yearly tests and we have noted certain faults. Where faults were identified, we have taken very strict measures with the employees.

  +-(1440)  

+-

    Mr. Mario Laframboise (Argenteuil—Papineau—Mirabel, BQ): Mr. Speaker, while there is a debate going on in the House on terrorism and measures to eradicate it, we draw the line at being told by a minister that an 18% security failure rate is acceptable.

    Will the minister admit that the least one could expect of a responsible minister would be that he is trying to get the figure close to 0% and not that he is satisfied with 18%?

[English]

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. member has it wrong. The fact is that these tests are conducted on an ongoing basis. The results to which he refers for the year ending last May were analyzed.

    People are dealt with at the time. They are removed from their posts.

    We toughened up measures even before September 11. As a result of what happened unfortunately on September 11 we made our screening progress even more rigorous as we did with all other manner of security at airports.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Chuck Cadman (Surrey North, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the government has overlooked the enormous costs incurred by Canadian families in finding their loved ones still missing in the aftermath of last week's terrorist attacks.

    Ontario has committed up to $3 million in support of such families. If it were not for this help and the Ontario victims assistance team they would be left to struggle on their own. What about the families who do not come from Ontario?

    I ask the Prime Minister, what financial support has his government offered to the families of Canadian victims?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first let me respond to the question by informing the hon. member that we have had outstanding efforts on behalf of consular workers in New York and elsewhere 24 hours a day since this tragedy. They fielded over 13,000 telephone calls from Canadians with a variety of expressions of concern.

    To this point in time we have taken the necessary steps to assist Canadians who have not been able to locate their loved ones. At the moment it does not appear useful or necessary for them to travel to New York, but we will remain in close contact with them as the situation develops further.

+-

    Mr. Chuck Cadman (Surrey North, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the answer but this concerns what it is costing families to find their victims in this rubble.

    I ask the question again. Is the government prepared, if the need arises, to provide any kind of financial support to the families of the Canadian victims?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me say first that we have taken the steps necessary to ensure that both the chief coroner of Ontario as well as potential assistance from other provincial governments are able to arrive on the ground in New York to provide assistance.

    Second, of course we will consider costs that may be incurred but at the moment it is not clear what the nature of those costs would be given that we are advising people at this moment that there is really nothing they can do, unfortunately, by going to New York City.

+-

    Mr. Steve Mahoney (Mississauga West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it has been eight days since the horrific terrorist attack against the United States and I have a question for the solicitor general.

    There is a question on the minds of many citizens in Canada as to whether or not there was a Canadian connection with regard to this act. We have all seen media reports on the subject. Most recently, in fact today, in the National Post, there is a report that the FBI is investigating an individual who recently lived in Canada.

    Could the minister provide any information to Canadian citizens concerning this?

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague from Mississauga West for his concern and I can assure him that this investigation continues to be a top priority for the RCMP and CSIS.

    Regarding this news article, it was about Ontario, California instead of Ontario, Canada.

    I can also tell my hon. colleague that at this point we still have no evidence that there is a Canadian connection.

*   *   *

+-Airline Safety

+-

    Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the transport minister.

    Canadian public at the airports require more competence from the government that they are getting now. Customs officers receive a full year of intensive training. Pre-flight screening officers receive 20 hours of training. Air Canada and other airlines have asked the federal government to accept full cost, full control and full training for pre-boarding screening officers throughout the entire country.

    Will the government accept that recommendation and look into that?

    Also, will the government at the logistics of examining and X-raying all baggage in cargo going onto an aircraft on domestic flights and transborder flights within the country?

  +-(1445)  

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I believe the focus really should not be on who is doing the actual screening but on the safety measures that we have in place, the oversight. That oversight is particularly rigorous. It always has been. We conduct tests on an ongoing basis to ensure that. Since last Tuesday we have brought into place other measures. Some of the suggestions of the hon. member are being examined throughout these last few days.

    I do not rule out any changes to improve security and to give Canadians the kind of confidence they want in the airline system.

+-

    Mrs. Bev Desjarlais (Churchill, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the recent terrorist attack certainly highlighted weaknesses in our nation's airport security and the government does appear to be failing to accept the full responsibility.

    Could the minister tell the House if Transport Canada is considering increased use of security cameras, X-ray and sniffer dog examination of all baggage, better security awareness training for airport workers and improved on board security measures which many view as more than locking the cockpit door?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have already stated that we are looking at every single measure that will enhance security for the travelling public, whether it is at the airport, whether it is on air side operations or whether it is on aircraft.

*   *   *

+-Terrorism

+-

    Mr. Inky Mark (Dauphin—Swan River, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, Canada is well known for housing terrorist groups such as Hezbollah, Hamas, the IRA and the Tamil tigers. Now that we have all witnessed the devastation created by the terrorist act in the United States, will the government finally move to have all terrorist activities in Canada halted and try these terrorists and their sympathizers in Canadian courts?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have already pointed out the government has in place through the criminal code a wide range of provisions and offences that can deal with many terrorist activities.

    In addition to that, we intend to move quickly and effectively to implement the remaining two UN conventions on terrorism, in particular the convention that suppresses terrorist financing. I think the hon. member will find that our legal infrastructure to deal with terrorist acts is among the very toughest in the world.

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the finance minister stated yesterday that funds are available for the war on terrorism. Canadians are speculating, no, they are hoping, that the ministers responsible for their safety and security spent this morning in cabinet fighting for more cash. I am talking about additional new money, not the funds allocated in a budget of a year and a half ago.

    My question is for the solicitor general. Was he successful in getting more money reallocated to his department to fight terrorism? Yes or no.

+-

    Hon. Lawrence MacAulay (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague refers to the words of the Minister of Finance and I can assure him that as the Prime Minister has said we will be walking with the United States every step of the way. We will also do whatever is needed in order to make sure this country remains the safest place in the world to live.

*   *   *

+-Foreign Affairs

+-

    Mrs. Lynne Yelich (Blackstrap, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, two weeks ago the Canadian government sent Canadian teacher Dr. Raymond Fast to Pakistan. With tensions escalating in the region, western governments are now pulling their people out of the country.

    The Canadian government first hesitated then advised Dr. Fast to leave immediately. At 2 o'clock this morning Dr. Fast, without a visa, had to rent a car and now is trying to get out. Dr. Fast and his family are wondering why the government is abandoning them.

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am not sure how the government is abandoning people when it has given them information that has recently come to light which they ought to respond to.

    I can assure the hon. member that we are endeavouring to advise Canadians who are in danger zones of the fact that danger does exist. We will be working with other governments, including the British, to provide assistance as required. If necessary we will evacuate any Canadians from dangerous regions.

  +-(1450)  

+-

    Mrs. Lynne Yelich (Blackstrap, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Dr. Fast still has not been heard from. British, Japanese and American embassy officials are taking care of their nationals. Our government still has citizens unaccounted for.

    Dr. Fast's family wants to know why the government has allowed this to happen to our citizens abroad.

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, perhaps there is more to this story than I have heard so far. It is not clear to me that the government has allowed something to happen to one of our citizens. We have endeavoured to contact Canadians who we are aware of in the region. We are certainly advising Canadians, through their families, to be in contact with Canadian officials in Islamabad so that we can advise them of the appropriate action to take. We will do everything at our disposal to be of assistance to them, as is usually the case.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-The Economy

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, yesterday, the Minister of Finance intimated that he might or might not pass certain measures to counter the economic slowdown that is unfortunately at Canada's door. I would ask him to be a little more specific.

    Will the Minister of Finance include special budget measures with his next economic statement to stimulate the economy, measures that have become more pressing and necessary than ever with the tragic events of last Tuesday in the United States?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I can assure the member that we will take the appropriate measures under the circumstances.

    For example, I just announced today that, last year, Canada reduced its debt by over $17 billion. This is a new record. It allowed the Bank of Canada yesterday to lower interest rates by 50 basis points.

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, paying back part of the debt is all very well, but there are special measures to stimulate the economy. We are in an economic slowdown. All the analysts are tending to agree.

    Could the Minister of Finance not be a little more original and have measures passed that would directly stimulate the economy, revive consumer confidence and provide a little boost under the circumstances to Canada's economy?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this is exactly what we have done and will continue to do.

    The reduction in interest rates of 50 basis points will have an effect next week and next month. Cuts to income tax, which are four times those in the U.S., have not been completed yet and will continue to stimulate the economy.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Airline Safety

+-

    Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday in a response to my question about air marshals, the Minister of Transport told the House “We are committed to providing enhanced security on the ground so we will not need air marshals”.

    Last night a news story on television informed Canadians that from May 2000 to May 2001 infiltration tests conducted by Transport Canada at major airports showed that one in five attempts to smuggle weapons past airport security were successful.

    If Transport Canada's own tests confirm that there is a one in five chance of getting a weapon on a plane, why is the minister dismissing the idea of air marshals without even studying it?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on the question of air marshals, I said that that was not the direction in which we were moving. What I did say was that we were looking at every aspect of airline security.

    We conduct these infiltration tests on an ongoing basis. We make them tougher and tougher and we deal with the airport people who actually do the screening. When they fail, they are removed from the job.

    As a result of these tests that were reported last May, we had measures in place before September 11 and we have redoubled our efforts since September 11.

+-

    Mr. James Moore (Port Moody—Coquitlam—Port Coquitlam, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the transport minister might want to update the information he is giving to Canadians because his website says that the current measures are only temporary.

    Last night in response to the uncovered Transport Canada information that 69 replica guns, knives and bombs got past airport security, the transport minister tried to spin the security failure by saying that this was good news and that it showed the testing was really tough and that it was really putting people on the spot.

    Does the minister really believe that an airport security failure of 20% is good news?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we strive for 100%. What is good news is that Transport Canada has measures in place to try to deal with every security threat that comes through, and we have redoubled our efforts since last week.

*   *   *

+-Trade

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in light of the recent of attacks, can the Minister for International Trade tell us what measures are being taken to ensure that trade with Canada's largest trading partner is not being affected?

  +-(1455)  

+-

    Hon. Pierre Pettigrew (Minister for International Trade, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, indeed the situation at the border has been more complicated in view of the extra vigilance we had to institute. Canadian business people understand that very well. We are monitoring the situation very closely.

    I have spoken with a number of business leaders and associations. I can tell members that we are identifying creative solutions to make sure that we can respect our security requirements under the circumstances. At the same time, we are making sure that trade functions and that the economy can continue to function well on the North American continent.

*   *   *

+-The Economy

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, since the House last met unemployment has gone up, the dollar has gone down, the economy has stopped growing, economists are predicting a recession and, according to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Canada is now at war.

    What, if anything, is the finance minister doing to react to the economic and fiscal consequences of these dramatic new realities?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is important to understand that we are in the middle of a global slowdown. When one is in the middle of a global slowdown, one should compare how Canada has reacted to the other countries.

    Since we last met, in the middle of this global slowdown we have paid down more debt than any other OECD country. We have cut our taxes more than any other G-7 country. Our dollar has been one of the strongest currencies in the world, albeit weaker than the United States. The fact is we have done better than most other countries.

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): That is what we get when we head into a recession. Mr. Speaker.

    Given the urgent need for increased resources for areas of national security and for us to prosecute our part in the war on terrorism, does the finance minister have plans or is he making plans to transfer financial resources from low priority areas and departments to the urgent priorities of the RCMP, CSIS and national defence?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, one of the advantages of having proceeded prudently is that we have set up reserves, and they were set out very clearly in the October statement, that will allow us to do precisely what is now required, which is to plan for the unexpected. Therefore, we are in a position to act.

    There is no doubt that there are priorities and hard choices will have to be made, and the government will make them. However, the Canadian public is now benefiting from the fact that its government did proceed prudently, a philosophy that the Alliance happened to criticize substantially every time we were in the House.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Terrorism

+-

    Ms. Pierrette Venne (Saint-Bruno—Saint-Hubert, Ind. BQ): Mr. Speaker, the international community has adopted twelve anti-terrorism conventions.

    Two of them, the international convention for the suppression of the financing of terrorism, and the international convention for the suppression of terrorist bombings have yet to be ratified by Canada.

    Will the government reassure us that it considers it a priority to ratify these two conventions?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Justice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have said previously, out of the 12 conventions referred to, Canada has signed, ratified and implemented 10 of them. There are only two remaining.

    As I clearly stated in this House yesterday, we will be bringing forward criminal legislation in the very near future to ensure that we can implement both the convention on terrorist bombing and the convention on the suppression of terrorist financing.

*   *   *

+-Airline Industry

+-

    Mr. John Harvard (Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Transport will know that with the disruptions of last week, Canada's airline industry faces financial and operational challenges.

    Could the minister tell the House whether Canada will follow the approach taken in the United States to assist our airlines?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are very concerned about the health of the airline industry. We are in discussions with the airlines. I have talked to the CEOs of the major airlines in the last few days.

    We want to make sure that we have all the facts before us before we make any assessment of the situation. There is no question that this country depends on a healthy airline sector.

*   *   *

+-Trade

+-

    Mr. Charlie Penson (Peace River, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, over the past few years, over $1.5 billion of goods has crossed the Canada-U.S. border every day on a just in time delivery system. Since the tragic events of last Tuesday, Canadian businesses have been co-operating with the new high security border regime. However, the current border slowdown is having a dramatic effect on our economy.

    What specifically is the government doing to develop a new border protocol that will satisfy American security requirements while maintaining the free flow of goods across that border?

  +-(1500)  

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of National Revenue and Secretary of State (Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec), Lib.): First, Mr. Speaker, since the tragic event we have heightened security at the border, which is to say more interviews, as well as using the technology we have such as passport and palm readers.

    While facing this situation, we have to recognize that most of our economic interests are within North America. Therefore, we have to recognize that it has to keep going that way as well.

    We need a balanced approach and we need to focus more on the question of perimeter, working of course with Transport Canada and the RCMP, but working as well in co-operation with the United States.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Cabinet Meetings

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ): Mr. Speaker, we have been informed that the chief of staff of the Canadian forces, the director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and the commissioner of the RCMP attended this morning's cabinet meeting.

    Given the volatility of public opinion since the attacks last Tuesday, will the Prime Minister tell the House what the nature of their appearance was?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Saint-Maurice, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, no one appears before the cabinet.

    When the cabinet meets, we sometimes invite senior government officials to brief the ministers on the situation within their departments. That is what happened this morning.

*   *   *

[English]

+-The Economy

+-

    Hon. Lorne Nystrom (Regina—Qu'Appelle, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance. Yesterday the Dow Jones fell by almost 700 points and the crisis in the Untied States is putting us at the brink of recession in this country.

    The minister knows we now have massive layoffs in the auto industry, the resource sector, the airline sector and many other sectors of the economy. We have now been more than 19 months without a budget.

    Will the minister do two things: Will he bring in a package to immediately stimulate the Canadian economy to try to avoid a recession and will he make a promise in the House today to bring in a budget some time this fall?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, again, the hon. member knows that we are in the middle of a global slowdown. It is one that is affecting the United States, Latin America, Japan and Europe.

    The fact is that Canada is very much part of this economy. That is why it was so important for us to get our balance sheet in order. That is why the debt reduction announcement of the day was so important.That is why it is important for us to have our taxes reduced.That is also why it is important to invest in research and development, education, health care and infrastructure.

    Those are the things that were set out in the October statement. Those are the programs that we can guarantee the Canadian people will be protected. We will continue in that vein.

*   *   *

+-Points of Order

+Business of the House--Speaker's Ruling

[Speaker's Ruling]
+-

    The Speaker: Order, please. I would now like to deal with the point of order raised on June 12, 2001, by the hon. member for Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough relating to the use of the provisions of Standing Order 56.1. The hon. member stated in his argument that an abuse of process had occurred which was “tantamount to a breach of the rules and the intention and interpretation thereof” when, earlier that day, the government used Standing Order 56.1 to move a motion to which unanimous consent had been previously denied. The motion in question concerned the disposition of business for the final two sitting days prior to the summer adjournment, including the voting method to be followed on the last supply day of the period ending June 23, 2001.

    I would like to thank the hon. the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, the hon. member for Yorkton—Melville, the hon. member for Winnipeg—Transcona and the Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons for their contributions on this matter.

  +-(1505)  

[Translation]

    At that time I ruled that the terms of the motion would stand, having been adopted by the House some eight hours before the hon. member raised his point of order. However, I also indicated my intention to return to the House in the fall with a statement on the use of Standing Order 56.1 and I am now ready to address the House on this matter.

    House of Commons Procedure and Practice, at page 571, describes Standing Order 56. 1 as follows:

    If, at any time during a sitting of the House, unanimous consent is denied for the presentation of a “routine motion”, a minister may request during Routine Proceedings that the Speaker put the motion. For that purpose, a “routine motion” refers to motions which may be required for the observance of the proprieties of the House, the maintenance of its authority, the management of its business, the arrangement of its proceedings, the establishment of the powers of its committees, the correctness of its records or the fixing of its sitting days or the times of its meeting or adjournment. The motion, which is neither debatable nor amendable, is immediately put to the House by the Speaker. If 25 Members or more oppose the motion, it is deemed withdrawn; otherwise, it is adopted.

[English]

    Standing Order 56.1 was adopted by the House in April 1991. At the time of its adoption concerns were raised about the implications of a rule that provides a mechanism for overriding the very unanimity of the unanimous consent mechanism that the House often uses to expedite its business. Speaker Fraser ruled on April 9, 1991, at page 19236 of the Debates:

    However, this “over-ride” provision can operate, as the Chair understands it, only with respect to a certain very limited range of motions offered at a specific time in our daily agenda by a minister of the Crown...Based on the fact that we have similar procedures existing with respect to other types of motions and given the very limited application of the new proposal, the Chair cannot accede to the request...that paragraph 20 of the motion respecting the Standing Order amendments be ruled out of order.

    It should be emphasized that at the time of its adoption it was envisioned that the standing order would be used for only so-called routine motions as defined in Standing Order 56.1(1)(b).

[Translation]

    Now let us examine how the rule has been used since its adoption 10 years ago. The government sought to use Standing Order 56.1 in 17 cases and failed in two instances.

    Between 1991 and 1995 it was used six times to authorize committee travel. This falls squarely within the terms of the standing order. From 1995 to 1997 it was used on the following four occasions to arrange the sittings of the House: in March 1995 and April 1997, to suspend the sitting of the House for the sole purpose of a royal assent ceremony; in March 1995, to enable the House to sit over the weekend to consider government orders Bill C-77, an act to provide for the maintenance of railway operations and subsidiary services, a bill already under time allocation; and in June 1995, to extend the sitting to consider government business beyond the extension already provided for under Standing Order 27(1).

    Here again, these four examples illustrate the intended use of Standing Order 56.1 for routine purposes, that is, to enable the House to fix the times of its meetings or adjournments and to arrange its proceedings.

  +-(1510)  

[English]

    From 1997 there are signs of a disturbing trend in which Standing Order 56.1 was used, or attempted to be used, for the adoption of motions less readily identified or defined as routine. Let us review specific examples of this trend.

    On December 1, 1997 the standing order was used for the first time to dispose of back to work legislation at all stages, Bill C-24, an act to provide for the resumption and continuation of postal services. In March 1999 the government attempted to use Standing Order 56.1 for back to work legislation on Bill C-76, an act to provide for the resumption and continuation of government services. This attempt failed, as did a second attempt three days later. Eventually the legislation was dealt with under a special order after the government moved the same motion which it had placed on the order paper under government orders.

[Translation]

    In June 1998, the government attempted to use Standing Order 56.1 to rescind a decision previously taken by the House concerning Standing Orders 57 and 78(3). The undertaking failed and members raised objections to this attempted use of the standing order. They argued that rescinding a unanimous decision of the House was not a routine motion and, as such, should not be permitted under this standing order. The Speaker allowed it, although he expressed misgivings, and he urged the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs to examine the appropriate use of Standing Order 56.1.

[English]

    Far less problematic are the two occasions where Standing Order 56.1 was used to enable the House to schedule take note debates, in both cases providing for the House to sit beyond its normal hours: in February 1998 to debate Canada's participation in a possible military action in the Middle East, the gulf war; and in April 1999 to consider the situation in Kosovo. So long as we continue to respect the distinction between emergency debates under Standing Order 52 and take note debates, using Standing Order 56.1 for scheduling purposes does not appear to violate the spirit of the standing orders.

[Translation]

    The government again used Standing Order 56.1 in June 2001 to dispose of all stages of Bill C-28, an act to amend the Parliament of Canada Act, the Members of Parliament Retiring Allowances Act and the Salaries Act.

[English]

    Finally, on June 12, 2001, the government, under Standing Order 56.1, moved a motion to dispose of business over the following two sitting days. In this instance the motion provided for the disposition of third reading of Bill C-11, an act respecting immigration to Canada and the granting of refugee protection to persons who are displaced, persecuted or in danger, and Bill C-24, an act to amend the criminal code (organized crime and law enforcement) and to make consequential amendments to other acts, and to dispose of Government Business No. 7, the summer adjournment motion.

    In addition the motion provided that once a recorded division had been taken on the main estimates, all subsequent motions to concur in any vote or votes on the main estimates shall be deemed moved and seconded and the question deemed put and agreed to on division. The effect of this was that there was a single recorded division on the first of 190 opposed items standing on the order paper and the remainder were deemed agreed to on division.

    At this point I would like to draw to members' attention the following reference at pages 571-2 of House of Commons Procedure and Practice:

    On April 9, 1991, Speaker Fraser, while pointing out that the range of motions to which the proposed procedure would apply was very limited, also suggested that the new Standing Order was to be understood as another procedurally acceptable mechanism for limiting debate: "There are certain similarities also between the proposal and existing Standing Order 78 respecting time allocation in that both use a ladder-like type of approach depending upon the extent of agreement forthcoming to securing the right to propose the motion".

    I would advise hon. members to be very cautious in their reading of this passage. In his ruling, Speaker Fraser drew a parallel between Standing Order 56.1, which requires a prior attempt to gain unanimous consent, and Standing Order 78, the time allocation rule, which requires notice or prior consultation. It seems doubtful to me, having read the ruling in its entirety, that Speaker Fraser really meant to suggest that Standing Order 56.1 was to be understood as another procedurally acceptable mechanism for limiting debate.

    The expanded use of Standing Order 56.1 since 1997 causes the Chair serious concern. The government is provided with a range of options under Standing Orders 57 and 78 for the purpose of limiting debate. Standing Order 56.1 should be used for motions of a routine nature, such as arranging the business of the House. It was not intended to be used for the disposition of a bill at various stages, certainly not for bills that fall outside the range of those already contemplated in the standing order when “urgent or extraordinary occasions” arise. Standing Order 71 provides in such cases that a bill may be dealt with at more than one stage in a single day.

  +-(1515)  

[Translation]

    Likewise, a motion seeking to reverse a unanimous decision of the House is a serious undertaking and should in no way be viewed as a routine motion. It was never envisaged that Standing Order 56.1 would be used to override decisions that the House had taken by unanimous consent.

[English]

    In the most recent use of Standing Order 56.1, a motion was adopted which provided for a recorded division on the first opposed item in the main estimates. However, all subsequent opposed items were then deemed moved and carried. The effect of the motion adopted pursuant to Standing Order 56.1 was to predetermine the results of all the votes following the first recorded division. It is clear to the Chair that this application of the standing order goes well beyond the original intent, that is, for the presentation of routine motions as defined in Standing Order 56.1.(1)(b).

    The standing order has never been used as a substitute for decisions which the House ought itself to make on substantive matters. In addition, if the House from time to time should agree by way of proceeding by unanimous consent as, for example, on the application of votes, one cannot assume that such agreements would automatically fall into the category of routine matters as defined in Standing Order 56.1.

    As I previously indicated, I allowed the motion adopted on June 12, 2001, to go ahead because there were no objections raised at the time it was moved. By the time hon. members expressed concern to the Chair some eight hours later, the Chair saw no alternative but to proceed with the terms of the motion. However, to speak frankly, had the objection been raised in good time, I would have been inclined to rule the motion out of order. This situation serves again to remind members of the importance of raising matters of a procedural nature in a timely fashion.

    In the three years since my predecessor urged the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs to examine the appropriate use of Standing Order 56.1, we have seen further evidence of a trend away from the original intent of this rule. This would seem all the more reason for the committee to consider the standing order at the earliest opportunity.

    In the meantime, based on close examination of past precedents and the most recent use of Standing Order 56.1 as a tool to bypass the decision making functions of the House, I must advise the House that the motion adopted on June 12, 2001, will not be regarded as a precedent. I would urge all hon. members to be vigilant about the use of this mechanism for the Chair certainly intends to be watchful.

    I want to thank all hon. members who intervened to raise this point before the House at this time.

*   *   *

+-Ways and Means

+-Notice of Motion

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 83.1, I wish to table a notice of ways and means motion to amend the Income Tax Act. I am also tabling a background document. I ask that an order of the day be designated for consideration of the motion.


+-Government Orders

[Supply]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Anti-Terrorism Legislation

    The House resumed consideration of the motion and of the amendment.

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member from Nanaimo for his excellent speech and for his strong words of encouragement coming from a spiritual nature, which is something which is rather rare and unusual in the House of Commons. I appreciate it and I know that there are many out there who do as well. Could the hon. member give me some indication of the public response to this particular episode that brought him to this particular speech?

  +-(1520)  

+-

    Mr. Reed Elley: Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague from Wild Rose. It is interesting that subsequent to the times of national mourning that were held in Ottawa, in Washington and in other capitals around the world, a number of people called my office. They talked to me personally about their deep concern that the whole issue of spiritual values had not been raised at our own national service here in Ottawa.

    In fact one lady was so exercised about it that she was in tears for her nation. She felt that we had lost our spiritual foundation. I know that many Canadians deeply care about that. We Canadians are not necessarily a demonstrative people about our faith. However I do think that in times of great national tragedy those feelings come very close to the surface. It is appropriate for us as leaders to not only allow the free discussion of those questions that arise out of these national tragedies, but to somehow exercise some kind of moral and spiritual leadership that would give our people hope. If a nation does not have hope for its future, it will soon lose its direction very clearly.

    I am sometimes concerned that we as a country have lost some of the direction for the future.

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I know that one of the inhibitions to words of prayer and spiritual comfort and having a spiritual dimension to public ceremonies is the multi-religious background of our country.

    As the member said, most Canadians do have a faith background. Could the member suggest some practical means of addressing this concern in a way that would be appropriate without losing the value of a spiritual dimension among our citizens during public exercises of mourning and remembrance?

+-

    Mr. Reed Elley: Mr. Speaker, there is always a danger for us in some sense to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Spiritually we probably have done that in this country when we try to be all things to all people. From a faith perspective we get to the lowest common denominator and we do not do anything.

    That is very dangerous for us as a nation. I was very taken by the service in Washington, D.C., which had a multi-faith component to it. They were very sensitive to the various religious expressions. There is no reason we in this country who claim to have a cultural and ethnic mosaic could not have demonstrated that very visibly at the service in Ottawa where we could have had shared expressions by representatives from the various faiths.

    At the local level I know that happened. It happened in my riding as well as across the country as people of various faith backgrounds got together. Again it is a question of us in leadership being bold enough to exercise leadership in this area. We should not be afraid to exercise spiritual leadership if we believe strongly in it. We should not be relegating it to the back rooms of our lives.

  +-(1525)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I wish to notify you that I will be splitting my time with my colleague from Pickering--Ajax--Uxbridge.

    The tragedies in New York City and Washington this past September 11 have affected us to our very core. We have all been thunderstruck by the acts of fanaticism and violence that annihilated in the blink of an eye so many human beings, changing for ever the lives of the families and loved ones of thousands of innocent victims.

    Today, foremost in our thoughts during this debate must be all the innocent victims who lost their lives so needlessly. There are thousands of families whose future will forever be marked by the loss of a father or mother, a sister or brother, a husband or wife, or some other loved one.

    May these families who are experiencing such great sorrow, a sorrow that will remain forever in their lives, find the strength and courage to continue their lives with acceptance and peace.

    There is a broad consensus, both here in this Chamber and among all democratic peoples, that the fanaticism and violence of terrorism have no place whatsoever in any society with a claim to being civilized.

    Our political parties and political leaders in all countries of the democratic and free world join together, as we do, in extending deepest condolences and the solidarity of their support in the collective battle against international terrorism.

[English]

    Now more than ever we must resolve to express through our future decisions and actions the values which we share of a deep and abiding belief in human rights, in the integrity and immeasurable worth of human life and the dignity of the individual.

    There must be a response to the fanatical act of September 11, 2001, but it must be a response of the broadest possible coalition of freedom loving peoples and governments all over the world. This response will call for immense wisdom, patience and perseverance, both by the leaders of the United States and those of their friends and allies including Canada.

    We must not let the immediate repulsion and emotions of September 11 provoke us into any hasty and fast conceived military actions which could plunge the world into a massive and prolonged conflict with impacts and consequences far beyond the international terrorist network and system we are determined to eradicate.

    This is why we owe it to ourselves and to the respective peoples of the international coalition, of which we form part, to reflect not separately but in unison, joining the most judicious of our collective thoughts in decisions that will be firm yet wise and so carefully studied, planned and executed that their consequences will be confined to the goals we seek, namely the crippling and eradication of world terrorism.

    We should not allow our immediate repulsion and emotions to lead us into decisions and actions which may in their process cause the loss of more innocent lives and destabilize the already delicate equilibrium of world peace, frail and inconsistent as it may be.

    In joining democratic governments in making much needed decisions for the eradication of world terrorism, we must also renew our resolve and efforts in the promotion of social justice in a world where the disparities between rich and poor, north and south, are still a blot on the international conscience and indeed represent much of the root causes of conflict and violence throughout the world.

    Today is not the occasion for strident calls for increased budgets or sudden drastic policy changes, not that these should not be considered in due time, but we should avoid the temptation of quick fixes and instant solutions without regard for the most thoughtful and judicious reflection and planning of a measured and careful collective response with its aftermath and consequences.

    Perhaps we should reflect as well that for Canada there is a lesson in humility to be drawn in the aftermath of September 11. Even if our military budget and forces were to be enhanced we would still constitute a very small military player in a multi-national operation.

    This is one more reason we must seek a more appropriate role for ourselves than a strictly military one. Even if we are a minor military actor we can play a major role on the moral front in influencing our allies toward a reasoned and judicious course of action backed by a large multi-national consensus.

    Although senseless, the fanatical acts of violence we have experienced have one basic aim: to provoke and unleash a reaction so rapid and vengeful that it would show our technologically advanced and well organized democratic societies as being capable of the same power of destruction that was visited upon us last Tuesday.

    Rather, let this be the moment in history when we reaffirm the strength in our bedrock values of peace, human dignity for every individual and reason. It is in times of major trials and upheavals that the intrinsic values of the human spirit reveal themselves. The present challenge will test the human spirit as decisively as at any previous crisis or crossroad in world history.

    Those who elected us in our respective countries will expect from us decisiveness borne of deep reflection and wisdom, taking into account all consequences of our actions relating to innocent populations.

    If increased planning, prudence and patience can mean a more confined operation centred on the prime objective of eradicating the nerve centres of the terrorist menace, this is a course we must favour over a new large scale military campaign with all the dangers it would pose to human lives and international stability.

    It is my strong hope that the redress which must be sought be carried out under the sanction of the United Nations and the international consensus that it expresses and represents. We will be judged in this hour of trial by the manner in which we rise to the challenge.

    Let us rise to the challenge with firmness but in a way which honours and respects the human condition and innocent populations, for what we decide today will mark our world perhaps for years to come.

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    Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, last Tuesday's horrific tragedy shook the United States, Canada and the entire world. On that day all of us became victims of acts of horrific cruelty, creating upheaval in public order for all of humanity.

    The world we live in today is far different from the one we lived in only seven short days ago. The world changed on September 11, 2001, and it will never be the same again. Words will never be enough to express our sadness and support for those who have lost family members or friends. However, as well as extending our thoughts and prayers we also wish to express our determination to ensure that despite the tragic and murderous consequences of terrorism free societies will never give in to terrorist acts and the values we hold so dear will continue to prevail.

    My riding of Scarborough--Agincourt is one of the most ethnically diverse in all of Canada. I represent people whose origins cover the face of the earth. Yesterday I received dozens of e-mails from constituents who wished to offer their thoughts on what happened and what should be done in light of these attacks.

    Lister Tennant states:

    The Canadian government as a member of NATO should use its influence and get the United States to exercise a cool head. The U.S. or NATO might be bombing a foreign country and killing innocent people while your real enemy is within the borders of the United States and Canada.

    Joe Hostyn states:

    Canada should support all anti-terrorist measures and actions including military support if required. We should also review all immigration policies and restructure them to make it much more difficult to establish terrorist cells of operation within our country. If it means restricting overall immigration, so be it.

    Malcolm and Elizabeth Abdool state:

    I hope that Canada would fully support the United States in the fight against international terrorism and trust that the necessary steps would be taken here in Canada to protect all Canadians. Thank you for the opportunity to give our input.

    Erma Collins states:

    I would not like Canada, despite NATO commitments, to participate in bombing Afghanistan or any other country. The west would then be the terrorists, taking the lives of innocent civilians. Someone ought to propose a new approach: sending relief supplies to poverty-stricken countries that breed terrorists. Violence (physical, economic, political, psychological) breeds violence. Of course, the individual perpetrators should be brought to justice.

    The list goes on and on. We must remember that the attack on September 11 is not the work of Muslims or Arabs but of terrorists.

    One thing that we must have in Canada is inclusion, acceptance and not just tolerance. I have heard people say that we should tolerate them because they are different. I have heard people say that we should look upon them as having a different colour of skin. One of the things that we must do in Canada is accept individuals as our neighbours. People in my riding of a different creed or colour have been made fun of and even attacked. That is not something to be supported and it should not be happening in Canada.

    Could the hon. member share with us some thoughts and ideas on this issue and whether he had any similar actions occurring in his riding?

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    Mr. Clifford Lincoln: Mr. Speaker, in the short time I have left I will say that I share the thoughts of my colleague. We should certainly be very careful not to use the tragedy that has occurred as an excuse for highlighting or pinpointing any racial or religious groups in particular.

    This is the time when we should resolve more than ever that we have a multi-racial society in Canada, as well as around the world, where respect for individuals, human rights and tolerance of everyone regardless of race, colour or creed is the paramount driving force in our societies and civilizations.

    I therefore endorse my colleague's comments very decisively.

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    Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in every community across the country, wherever we may have been at around nine o'clock eastern standard time on September 11, none of us will ever forget that day of infamy.

    On behalf of all the residents of my community I wish to express to the House of Commons our deep regret and sorrow regarding the victimization and death of so many and the act which brought it about. It is something we as a community collectively repudiate.

    This evil knows no bounds. The modernity of evil has taken a new course but I think we all recognize that from evil also comes the power of good.

    The member for Nanaimo--Cowichan talked a while ago about the spiritual dimension of this. I too could find no words, acts or gestures to compensate for our deep feelings of anger and sadness and our belief that Canadians share with the Americans in their tremendous sorrow. We have sought among ourselves that which is our only resolve: our faith.

    Within minutes of hearing about the tragedy I called my wife. I wanted to make sure it was not really happening yet I knew we were blessed that it had not happened here in Canada. The call I made to my wife was one of love. I immediately followed it by saying the Holy Rosary, something I have rarely talked about but which I felt was important. At the same time I called my friends whom I have invited to the Hill to create a new impression of Islam and to talk about their feelings regarding the outrage that occurred.

    On Friday I spent an interesting time with my colleague and friend, Councillor Dave Ryan of Pickering, speaking to Muslims about their faith. They told us they are about peace and that they do not tolerate or condone killing as it is against the Koran.

    Most people, whether they wear a kaffiyeh, a yamulka, a pagri or simply wear their faith in their heart, know that the unspeakable acts of a week ago were the result of a very narrow but determined group of individuals bent on making themselves martyrs. To such people human life is of no consequence, whether their own or that of the innocents tragically murdered in one fell swoop last week.

    I am not sure we can fully comprehend the dimension of the changes that will be required in our lives as a result of what transpired last week. In my comments earlier to one of the members I mentioned what had transpired some 19 years ago. Yesterday was the 19th anniversary of the massacre at Sabra and Shatila.

    There have been many occasions around the world when this parliament has been gripped with issues of humanitarian concern. However we do not see the face that breeds the kind of indifference, despair and abject poverty that serves as a hotbed and a catalyst for people who see no option but to attack the west.

    U.S. Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, whom many in the House know as a longtime CIA critic, put it very well recently. His response to the tragedies was quoted in the New York Times on September 16. He observed:

--that Washington “was still worrying about intercontinental missiles when we had a wholly new set of threats, the fierce and unresolved Islamic antagonism over centuries of domination from the West”.

“We have to start all over again in what we think we're dealing with,” he said. “Perhaps organizations we had for another era will be able to do that. But it is more likely we'll have to create new institutions”.

    We find ourselves here today debating a motion presented by the Canadian Alliance. We would all like to find the perfect elixir and magic solution that would create and ensure security for Canadians while at the same time addressing the roots of the antagonism that is meeting North America with deadly force.

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    However I am not sure the proposal by the Alliance would do that. It may in fact go in a different direction. The suppression of rights and labelling of suspicious individuals as potential terrorists may well result in people who object, for instance, to genetically modified foods being viewed as terrorists.

    There are opportunities here. I read the United Nations prospective on human rights with respect to the United Kingdom's anti-terrorism legislation. Today's motion is not just an explanation of the U.K. legislation. More important, the Alliance motion calls for:

the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences; and

the detention and deportation to their country of origin of any people illegally in Canada or failed refugee claimants who have been linked to terrorist organizations.

    It is clear that two wrongs do not make a right. What the bill is proposing may be far too draconian. It may be the basis for a police state in which individuals can be arrested at will on a mere suspicion.

    There is no doubt that Canadians expect us to do the right thing. However they also expect us not to act rashly. They expect us to provide legislation that is effective and meaningful but which distinguishes, to the extent that it is possible, between terrorists and those who simply hold a point of view which may not conform with the majority.

    We must draw on the collective wisdom of the Moslem, Christian and other communities that have talked at great length about ensuring we do not make victims of those who are innocent, not just here in Canada but around the world.

    For these reasons it is important for parliament not to act in a way that is precipitous and serves the short term needs of those who want revenge. Goodness knows, even President Bush has not acted that immediately.

    I was surprised this morning to read in the paper that Canada had been a conduit for the government of Iran to send a message to the United States. Canada has a unique perspective in the world to have been able to bring together two countries that traditionally, in my lifetime at least, since 1978-79, have been hostile enemies. Canada served as a go between not for terrorism but for a rapprochement, to brings these countries together. That is significant.

    The events of last week will not be resolved by quick knee-jerk reactions. I have heard the Prime Minister, the Minister of Justice and many colleagues on both sides of the House search for solutions. The solutions are there but they must be considered in the proper context.

    This is a new type of evil. It has been modernized. Its presence has been felt here in North America for the first time. We are waking up to a reality of the world in a devastating and tragic way. Once the perpetrators are brought to justice we will still be left with the fundamentals: the seeds of oppression and the kinds of things Canadians would not want to see in their own backyards.

    We want to ensure that people with differences of opinion have the opportunity to express and articulate their concerns in peaceful ways. We cannot emphasize enough the need to ensure that in the pursuit of justice we do not in any way, shape or form invite an injustice on people who are unsuspecting. I know that our Alliance colleagues on the other side of the House understand this principle as well.

    We must act. The Prime Minister has said that will happen. However we must act internationally and not create our own form of continental barrier.

    Ironically the Immigration Act that is before the House and Senate may be an opportunity to ensure we are more careful. If it only takes two or three individuals to disrupt the world, as we have seen, we have a lot of work to do. God willing, this parliament will get its act together and co-operate to ensure we address the root causes of this outrage and bring the perpetrators to justice. However at the end of the whole process we must honour and respect due process and the rule of law.

    May God bless us all in the House.

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    Mr. Darrel Stinson (Okanagan—Shuswap, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like to make a few things clear for the hon. member across the way. The motion calls for:

the naming of all known international terrorist organizations operating in Canada;

    It also calls for:

the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences;

    It is difficult to understand on this side of the House, after talking with people in Canada since the act took place in the United States, why we would hesitate to deport known terrorists from the country after they have inflicted this type of damage on the citizens of other nations.

    I hear cries for the protection of human rights. What about the protection of our citizens and the citizens of other nations? When it comes down to the crunch, will we choose human rights or human lives? I would much rather see police in Canada rounding up and deporting known terrorists than rounding up the families of the victims they have killed and taking them to the morgue. Could the hon. member comment on that?

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    Mr. Dan McTeague: Mr. Speaker, there is no doubt that those who committed these acts have no regard for human rights or human life. If that were the case last week's events would not have happened.

    The hon. member talks about the ability to round people up. Those who committed these acts must be dealt with. I have emphasized that. However the people rounded up must be known terrorists who present a real and present danger to our country or to the world. They must not be individuals whom we merely suspect, as is the case with the United Kingdom's resolution.

    I will point out for the hon. member's edification that the United Nations in its resolve said that the government should repeal the very measures the hon. member will support today. The United Nations human rights commission said the British government should repeal all provisions that are not in conformity with international treaties and standards, in particular emergency laws like the prevention of terrorism act which have a chilling effect on freedom of opinion and expression.

    It has been said here enough: two wrongs do not make a right. Insh'allah, we will be guided by that which is right. We should be guided by principles of justice which ensure that, rather than trying to find quick and expedient fixes, we do something to combat this new reality.

    As we know, the Americans were caught flat-footed last week. There is wide recognition among military and other observers that since the cold war ended we have been dealing with an entirely new threat that we have not wanted to acknowledge.

    When a small plane crashed in front of the White House six or seven years ago an hon. member pointed out that very little was done to respond to the new potential threat.

    We are looking at the world from a very different perspective this week. It will take us a long time to break out of the mould. However I can assure the hon. member that we will do it in a way that is just. We will do it in a way that is not rash and that serves the ultimate interest of protecting innocent citizens. That is the responsibility of the government and we will act.

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    Mr. Grant McNally (Dewdney—Alouette, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, Colin Powell has mentioned a gathering of the coalition against terrorism. He has said there are two groups within the coalition: those who offer rhetorical support, which amounts to words of support and encouragement only, and those who are willing to back up their words with military support and actions of that sort.

    While I understand the need to consider our response, I am hoping the government will lead. The people of Canada will follow. There is wide support. The government has an opportunity to demonstrate leadership. I hope the government will take this into consideration and act swiftly. I encourage it to take concrete steps to support our closest friends and allies in the United States.

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    Mr. Dan McTeague: Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister of this country has made that patently clear and obvious to anybody who has been here or who has witnessed what has happened.

    I want to point out to the hon. member that we risk falling into the hands of the terrorists' ultimate agenda, not just of sowing fear but of ensuring that our stability as a nation and as a free loving, democratic people is imperiled because we overcorrect and because we institute things that are beyond what would be expected in a free and democratic society. We cannot lose sight of what they are attacking. They are attacking our values and we will not allow those values to be suppressed in order to sustain them. It does not make sense. They have to be measured and proper. We love freedom. We love democracy. Make no mistake, we will not let anybody destroy those views and those values, but we must ensure that the terrorist ultimately does not win in suppressing the rights that we value and cherish in Canada. Our mission is to bring them to other countries.

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    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today with an extremely heavy heart after listening to the debate over the last two days following the terrible tragedy.

    As many members know, I am a 65 year old grandfather who spent the first half of his life being raised and educated in the United States. I took part in military service with pride. When I chose to move into another field of work, into education, it led me to come to Canada. When I left the United States it was with mixed feelings. However, a short time after I had arrived in Canada I knew I had made the right decision. I never dreamed for a moment that about 30 years later I would have the honour of standing in this House representing the people of my riding who chose me to come here.

    I also never thought that I would be rising in this place to talk about the country from where I came, a country that I love, a country where my relatives, both in-laws and outlaws so to speak, live and where I have two grandchildren who reside two and a half hours from New York.

    After I had phoned many of my relatives last week, I could not believe the hurt, the sadness and the deep rooted feelings in their hearts with regard to this particular incident. It is because of that I hurt pretty badly today for them, knowing they are going through a tragic thing. However, I want them to be comforted, at least from my perspective and that of others, that the 140,000 people who live in my riding are coming together collectively and praying for the victims and the rescue workers of this tragedy. They are asking all of us to come together in brotherhood to stamp out those who would do such an atrocious thing.

    I have received a document from my brother who was a veteran of World War II. He became disabled recently because of the frozen feet he sustained during that war. He was caught in a trench for hours and hours along with most of his unit, pinned down under enemy fire. They did not know what their future would be but it was looking very grim. After about 14 or 15 hours, over the hill came relief. It was Canadian, American and allied troops in brotherhood who literally brought new life to him which enabled him to contact me this week.

    That kind of brotherhood does not exist today. There was a call from my brother and others that the brotherhood of the two countries needs to be revitalized. He sent a document to me. He did not realize that the document he sent was two decades old. However, it was being distributed in the United States. He said that if I knew the fellow who made this speech, because he was from Canada, would I please contact him to thank him for his strong support for the kind of unity and brotherhood that is so essential.

    The fellow of course was Gordon Sinclair. My brother did not realize he was deceased and had made the speech two decades ago. Is it not a shame that a document from Gordon Sinclair that is giving hope to so many Americans is 12 years old. However they are not hearing a whole lot today, which is sad. I do not know if I have the heart to tell them that the great speech about the need for the solid unity of brotherhood is 20 years old.

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    When I was talking to him he asked me if I would, when I go back to parliament, do what they have done in his land where the Democrats and Republicans have come together, linked in arms, with determination that this will come to an end, that it will be defeated and that we on this land will never have to fear it again. He asked me if we would work together co-operatively and join arms with everyone in the House of Commons with the determination that it takes to destroy the enemy who has done this vicious thing.

    He then said another very strange thing. He asked me not to forget to pray for those individuals in other lands who are so full of hate that they are training and brainwashing their youth into thinking that the only solution is to destroy western civilization. They are holding up these young people who are being led into these things beyond their will. He illustrated that to me with the number of contacts he had regarding the Nazis who were brought up in that same fashion with murder and destruction, which is what he faced.

    I have heard a lot of people in the House of Commons say that we should restrain our emotions and that we should not allow our emotions guide us. Well I am filled with emotion. I have a lot of sadness after hearing what I have heard over the last two days. The idea of coming together collectively and treating this episode in the manner of what it actually is, is being taken far too lightly. We need to think about that.

    My anger is still alive. May God never turn my anger to hate. In 65 years that has never happened but the anger that swells up in me at times has produced some adrenalin that has created some action, and a lot of times for the good. There is nothing wrong with being angry but we must not let it turn to hate. We must remember the 15 year old who was attacked. We must encourage all the people we know to not go after the innocent people in this great land. They are not responsible. We cannot start making assumptions. We must come together believing that this evil thing that has happened can be stamped out and overpowered with good.

    My emotions have been comforted but, unfortunately, it has been through some knee-jerk reactions from the south. When President Bush called up 50,000 reservists that gave me some relief. The man is serious. He will put people and things into place to start immediate protection. I bless him for going to the site in New York City and reading from the scripture trying to bring comfort to those who put their faith in God. He tried to strengthen their faith by recognizing our differences and being willing to bring some comfort. Many of the 100,000 people assembled on the Hill looking for some kind of spiritual comfort, felt they came away empty.

    Yes, we are told not to let fear guide us. However I have too many grandchildren not to be a little fearful. I want to have some security in my life when I leave this land knowing that their lives will not be filled with terror and evil.

    We were willing to come together collectively to say, yes, we need to take some action. For Pete's sake, our border guards are crying out today, with the situation the way it is, for equipment.

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    They are calling me as we speak. I am getting e-mails from border guards all up and down the border asking for help. They are saying that they are underequipped and undermanned. Yet we see members rise in the House with rhetoric that everything is rosy. It is not rosy and we should start facing reality. We should start listening to the people who are on the frontlines and be thankful for them. We should listen to what they are saying.

    If members want to comfort this grampa then they should adopt the motion and indicate to all Canadians and Americans that we are no longer prepared to support terrorism in any fashion. There are some excellent ideas here. It is not a matter of trampling on human rights. It is a matter of saying that terrorism will not get ground in this land. It will be snuffed out. I want to receive some confidence that it will happen. One should take away my emotions and give me some faith in not only God but in my country. We must be strong but united.

[Translation]

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    Ms. Madeleine Dalphond-Guiral (Laval Centre, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I listened carefully to the intervention by my colleague from Wild Rose. I sensed a lot of emotion. In this context, I wish to address my remarks to the grandfather, in the hopes that they will also remain parliamentary.

    The sixth proposal in the motion of the official opposition reads as follows:

the detention and deportation to their country of origin of any people illegally in Canada or failed refugee claimants who have been linked to terrorist organizations.

    I would like to speak in particular of the first group of people mentioned, that is, any person illegally in Canada, those who are said to be without papers, illegal immigrants. Detention means depriving people of their freedom. These illegal immigrants include children.

    The convention on the rights of the child rejects the detention of children, with certain exceptions, and then for very short periods.

    I would like my colleague from Wild Rose to tell me his views on the children who would effectively be imprisoned if this motion were adopted and implemented.

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[English]

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    Mr. Myron Thompson: Mr. Speaker, I find it hard to comment on these kinds of questions. We are talking about the big picture of terrorism. We are talking about those who are directly linked to terrorists.

    All Canadians are compassionate enough to understand that any time a small child is involved we have the common sense to take the right steps to look after his or her welfare. We will let all the love we have in us relate to the small child who has no say in his or her destiny.

    The what if questions are difficult to answer. The legislation simply says in a very strong way that terrorism will not be tolerated in this land. It presents some of the things that we can do to make sure it does not get a foothold and ensures the safety of the innocent at every turn of the way.

    However what I do not want is some kind of document put to a committee, sent away for study and research that we may or may not hear about two years down the road, and in the meantime we have another half a dozen terrorist events.

    The particular event in the United States is not a criminal act. It is an act of war. Once we get that straight in our minds we will not treat this as a criminal case where some day those perpetrators will be brought into a courtroom where a judge will make some kind of a decision. It is beyond that.

    It is an act of war and we must be prepared to do the necessary things to defend this country and its sovereignty as well as the North American continent. We must keep the compassion that is so necessary to defend the innocent, such as children who may get caught up in the idiotic world of adults.

    I do not see that as difficult to do. It takes determination, unity and solid thinking but we cannot mush around with this as we have mushed around with so many other issues. We have not had any changes in the Young Offenders Act or the Immigration Act since we came here in 1993. Canadians will ask when we will make things change.

    We should not let this one go. This is bigger than we are making it. That is not trying to instill fear but instilling encouragement in Canadians that we have leaders in the land who are determined that the safety and sovereignty of Canadians is a greater priority than some of the things we see going on today.

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    Mr. Chuck Cadman (Surrey North, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is also with a heavy heart that I address the House today. As many of my colleagues have already said, it is difficult to put into words the immense sorrow that has been caused due to the terrorist attacks carried out on the United States one week ago.

    I wish to express my deepest condolences on behalf of myself, my family and the constituents of Surrey North to all the victims and their families and indeed to all the people of the United States.

    At about 6:30 last Tuesday morning the phone rang at my home in Surrey, British Columbia. My wife answered it and it was my daughter calling from Vancouver. She had just turned on her radio and heard something about an aircraft crashing into the World Trade Center in New York.

    I turned on the TV and sat there stunned at what I was seeing, columns of thick black smoke billowing from those two monoliths. Then came the video replays of the second aircraft smashing into the south tower.

    Those of us who commute from the west coast do so on Boeing 767s more often than not. When I boarded flight 1138 on Sunday morning I realized that I would never look at a 767 in quite the same way again.

    As the live coverage continued the north tower collapsed. I thought about the people trapped in that terrifying death plunge. My stomach knotted and I went numb.

    There is only one time in my life that I can recall feeling what I was feeling during that brief moment which seemed like an eternity. That was nine years ago one month from today in a hospital emergency room when we were told that they were unable to resuscitate our son who had been stabbed. I never thought I could feel like that again, but that moment last Tuesday brought me as close as I ever want to get.

    At some point during the following few minutes I came to another frightening realization. I had been so caught up in watching events unfold on television that I completely lost sight of the fact that my sister worked in Manhattan. About a very anxious hour later, just as I was leaving home for my office, the phone rang again. Thankfully it was my niece in Toronto calling to say that her mother, my sister, had managed to get a call out to let everybody know that she was all right.

    I spoke with my sister on Tuesday evening. Her office is about a half hour's walk from ground zero. I spoke with her again the night before last and she told me that a relative of one of her co-workers was missing in the rubble. I went to the office and I suspect like most Canadians I was glued to the television for the rest of the day.

    My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. The loss felt is very deep and personal to each and every one of us. Included among the casualties are several Canadians. As an elected member of parliament I offer my sincere condolences to those Canadian families directly affected by this senseless act of war.

    I express my gratitude and pay tribute to the thousands of Canadians who have offered their help in the wake of the tragedy, from those who have given blood, to the rescue workers, doctors, nurses and emergency personnel that have aided in the rescue effort.

    I want to mention members of the Vancouver urban search and rescue team. They finally received authorization to deploy to New York and were ready to go. My understanding is that there were two Canadian Forces C-130s in the air on the way to pick them up when for whatever reason U.S. authorities changed their minds and told them that they were not required. When I spoke with one of the team members I could sense the frustration and disappointment of not being able to go and help.

    What is most troubling to me is that these were not simply acts of terrorism carried out against an individual nation. The attacks on the United States last week were an open declaration of war on all democracies worldwide. I would like to take a moment in the House, a symbol of Canadian freedom and democracy, to add my support to the government in taking resolute action against terrorism.

    I take this opportunity to call on the Government of Canada and all Canadians to take action and lend whatever support and resources are necessary to eradicate terrorism and those who would threaten our free and democratic way of life.

    As Canada's elected representatives we must ask many painful questions, not for political purposes but to ensure that everything is done to prevent such horrific tragedies as we have seen recently in the United States.

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    We must do this to send a signal around the world that Canadians are protectors of peace, freedom and democracy and that we will join the free world to help in relentlessly hunting down those who so viciously and in a cowardly way attack those foundations of the free world.

    Some of the questions we need to ask are these. What will we need to do provide greater security at our borders and airports? How can we change our laws to prevent foreign terrorists from entering and living in Canada or using it as a fundraising centre? How much capacity do we have to offer Canadian military assistance to the United States and our NATO allies in forming an international coalition against terrorism and its sponsors?

    At a very minimum I would urge the government to bring in long delayed anti-terrorism legislation in a manner that reflects the seriousness of the current situation.

    A few years ago, a constituent of mine, Mr. Tara Singh Hayer, a respected Sikh newspaper publisher, was murdered in his driveway. A few years before that he had been shot at and was paralyzed. The most recent crime, his murder, remains unsolved, but extremists are implicated.

    His daughter Rupinder spearheaded a 12,000 name petition in the Indo-Canadian community, calling on the government to tighten immigration laws and hunt down and deport terrorists hiding in Canada. To date nothing has been done.

    Last year members of the Sri Lankan community in my constituency visited me. They were extremely critical of Bill C-16 in that it does not go anywhere near far enough to curb terrorism. They want support of terrorism to be made a crime. I have also had individuals from the Indo-Canadian community in my office who were extremely critical of Canada's immigration and refugee policies. These are members of the immigrant community themselves.

    I am also compelled to speak of the need to stay united and focused against the enemy, those people who threaten our way of life through acts of terrorism.

    The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms states:

    Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:

a) freedom of conscience and religion;

b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;

c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and

d) freedom of association.

    I feel it is necessary to remind all Canadians of the charter because at times like this some, and I repeat, some find it easy to feel anger against certain elements of our population. Let us not forget the lessons of the past when Japanese Canadians were detained and denied the freedoms outlined in the charter even though thousands of Canadians died during World War II to ensure that freedom and democracy could exist and that the charter could indeed be written and exercised in Canada.

    This is why I am encouraging all Canadians to come together as a nation no matter what faith or religion they come from. We are Canadians first.

    The reports of Muslim Canadians being harassed and made the targets of hate makes me sick. It is hard to believe that anyone could attribute the acts of barbarism carried out in the United States to any one particular faith. The perpetrators of these crimes are simply evil people who hide behind their religion as an excuse to perpetuate their evil.

    To say the Muslim faith is responsible would be like saying that because Timothy McVeigh was a Christian all Christians were responsible for the bombing in Oklahoma City. I hope that all Canadians and people of the free world can appreciate this point and find tolerance in their hearts to work together. We must work together in order to eradicate our true enemy, those people who use terrorist tactics to take away our fundamental rights and freedoms.

    In conclusion I can only reiterate the sentiment that has been expressed over and over: that speaking as one who understands the violent loss of a loved one, my thoughts and prayers are first and foremost with the victims and the families of these horrendous acts; that our resolve to wipe out terrorism has never been stronger; and finally, that as a strong nation united with our allies that uphold the cherished principles of freedom, democracy and justice, we can and will prevail against any evil that may try to take away from us our way of life.

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    Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my hon. colleague because his comments were eloquently put and I have to agree with many things that he said. However, I was a little bit disturbed by the previous speaker who was speaking of those of us in North America. I envisioned a wall around North America, but I am wondering about the rest of the people.

    I read the motion that has been brought here today. The fifth point mentions “the prompt extradition of foreign nationals charged with acts of terrorism, even if the charges are capital offences”.

    I can relate stories of families that came to this country when their children were two or three years old and that, for whatever reason, perhaps ignorance, did not take out citizenship for the children. These children have grown to the ages of 30 or 40 and are committing capital offences. Therefore what we are doing today is exporting these people to the countries they came from even though these kids were raised and educated in Canada.

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    Mr. Myron Thompson: Terrorists.

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    Mr. Jim Karygiannis: Mr. Speaker, my colleague across the way is saying terrorists, and I have to tell you that even if the charges are capital offences, they do not know how to write. Someone has written this down wrong.

    Some hon. members: Detention.

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    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. I just want to remind colleagues that notwithstanding the emotions, the strength of the views and the feelings, all comments must be directed through the Chair. I encourage all hon. members to be very judicious.

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    Mr. Jim Karygiannis: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The sixth paragraph reads “the detention and deportation to their country of origin of any people illegally in Canada or failed refugee claimants”. My riding of Scarborough--Agincourt has seen wave after wave of immigrants. A lot of the people are here illegally or are in Canada seeking refuge. I have worked with the people as a member of parliament for the last 18 years and have seen them come into Canada as refugees. Today they are prominent Canadians. They are people with businesses. They are people who have what it takes to be Canadian and are taxpaying citizens.

    I believe that we must give calm and reasoned thought to what Canada's action should be and even greater thought as to the long term outcome of our actions. The phrase act in haste and repent at leisure is one that we must heed.

    The evil perpetrators of the horror represent no community or religion. They stand for evil, nothing less. My colleague made comments about his family and sister in the United States. I too have friends in the United States and share his views. However, in regard to some of the things that are put forward in the motion, I have to ask my colleague through you, Mr. Speaker, how can he stand and support it in view of what his other colleagues are saying?

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    Mr. Chuck Cadman: Mr. Speaker, I would suggest that the member read the motion a little more closely. We are talking about people who have been linked to or who have committed acts of terrorism. We are not talking about people who have necessarily violated the criminal code in this country or whatever. We are talking about people who have committed acts of terrorism.

    I too have a large immigrant community in my constituency. It is those people themselves who are coming to me asking for this kind of legislation. We have to listen to them because they know what is going on in their own community. They know the people who are in their community and who they do not want. They know that the people they do not want in the community are causing them to all be tarred with the same brush, which they do not appreciate.

    It is the immigrants in my community who are demanding this kind of legislation.

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    Mr. Andy Savoy (Tobique—Mactaquac, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time.

    On September 11, 2001, we as Canadians expressed a multitude of unpleasant emotions: sorrow, fear, outrage and grief to name a few.

    Today I would like to speak about how we as Canadians grieved with and for our neighbours and I would like to highlight some of the actions taken by constituents of Tobique--Mactaquac.

    First and foremost, on behalf of the residents of Tobique--Mactaquac I want to offer my condolences to those people whose lives have been devastated by this tragedy.

    In 1783, when the Webster-Ashburton treaty drew a demarcation line between the state of the Main and the province of New Brunswick, a relationship that transcends any geographical barrier was already formed.

    Since 1783, the border that separates Maine and New Brunswick has in most respects remained invisible. We are bound by strong historical, social, cultural, economic and family ties with our neighbours to the south.

    The majority of constituents in my riding can claim Americans among their kin. They can also count Americans among their most important business patrons and partners.

    The biggest industries in my riding have plants on both sides of the border: McCain Foods, with plants in Easton and Ashland, Maine, and Grand Falls and Florenceville, New Brunswick; Norbord and Nexfor, with sawmills in Ashland, Maine, Juniper and Plaster Rock, New Brunswick, to name a few.

    For centuries the Maine-New Brunswick border has united rather than divided us. This was never more evident than on Friday, September 14, when over 400 people filled the Woodstock Community College gymnasium for a sermon to remember the victims of last Tuesday's terrorist attacks.

    The response was remarkable, given that my offices, together with the Woodstock Ministerial Association, had only begun promoting the national day of mourning event four hours earlier.

    Some $2,000 was collected for the Canadian Red Cross at this multi-faith service and sympathies to the American people were expressed in books of condolences. The books are now being circulated throughout the riding. Once filled, they will be delivered to Maine congressman John Baldacci, with whom I formed a friendship during a spring softwood lumber lobby in Washington, D.C.

    Ironically, Congressman Baldacci and I were to co-host a cross-border summit last Saturday to exchange information and develop ways to increase trade between our two countries.

    In the service's closing prayer, Canon Walter Williams recognized the humanitarian efforts of one young individual, Candace Salmon, who was at that moment in neighbouring Houlton, Maine, for a similar service.

    Moved by the horrific images she watched on television, the grade 12 student decided she would do her part to help heal the wounds. On her own initiative Candace collected over $300 on her lunch hours, purchased flowers from her donations and presented the plants and donations to border guards at Houlton, Maine. She then took the remaining proceeds to Houlton High School where the school's civil liberties class accepted her donation on behalf of the American Red Cross.

    So touched were the students by Candace's act of selfless generosity that some openly wept. Before Candace and her friend left the Houlton school that day, her Maine peers presented her with multicoloured ribbons, symbols of sympathy and solidarity, to give to her classmates back in Woodstock. It was agreed that their two schools would develop an exchange program to build on cross border relations between the regions' youth.

    I ask my fellow MPs to let Candace be an inspiration to us all, for in one gesture of kindness and compassion she lifted the hearts of those who grieved, aided rescue and relief efforts with money for the American Red Cross and initiated a new partnership for youth in two border communities.

    May we follow Candace's example in the days and weeks ahead of us as we aid our greatest friend and ally. Let us show compassion and support and let us share resources with the United States in its hour of need.

    Candace's actions embody the spirit of co-operation and friendship my riding has enjoyed for centuries with our neighbours to the south. I ask all Canadians to let this spirit be the guide to our actions as we struggle to come to grips with this unspeakable act of evil.

  +-(1625)  

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    Mr. Roy Cullen (Etobicoke North, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I congratulate my colleague, the member for Tobique--Mactaquac.

    We all share in the shock, the horror, the revulsion and the sadness as a result of the events that took place in the United States on September 11. This was indeed a senseless and cowardly act committed by a very few fanatics willing to give up their lives for a cause that is difficult to piece together and comprehend. They have really turned the whole world upside down.

    Some heroic efforts need to be acknowledged and heralded: the passengers who probably charged the cockpit crew, probably saving countless lives in Pennsylvania; the work of the fire men and women, the police officers and other rescue workers who lost their lives trying to save the victims, and this work continues.

    Canadians and people around the world have responded in a remarkable way with messages of condolence, support and sadness; with the giving of blood; with the donations of many kinds and different descriptions; and in many other ways.

    There are some who jumped at the alleged Canadian connection and now it appears that 17 of the terrorists spent many years in the United States. However the message is that all nations need to look at their security, look at their approach and look at their responses. We all need to tighten up. We need to be resolute.

    We must have measured action in the short term but, more important, in the medium and long term. New approaches to intelligence gathering and infiltration will be part of the longer term solution in my view. The fact that these terrorists were able to stay underneath the radar of the intelligence community is a cause for concern. We need many more rapid responses to aircraft that deviate from approved flight paths and more airport and aircraft security. I was delighted that the Minister of Transport said that the cockpit doors must be sealed.

    All Canadians need to remember that this is a fight against terrorists, not against any community or single group. In my riding of Etobicoke North, I have a Muslim community which met last week to show their support for action. They abhor the terrorist action that resulted in the loss of so many lives in the United States.

    Does the member for Tobique--Mactaquac have such communities in his riding and, if so, how are they responding? I am sure they are responding in a similar way in that this is something that needs to be dealt with but that we cannot target individual groups. We must all realize that this terrorist action was as a result of a very small number of people who were committed and were fanatics. I hope that message is coming through in his riding as well, although he may not have the diversity that is present in some of the urban ridings in Canada.

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    Mr. Andy Savoy: Mr. Speaker, within our riding we share border communities: Woodstock, New Brunswick with Houlton, Maine; Perth-Andover, New Brunswick with Fort Fairfield, Maine; Grand Falls, New Brunswick with Limestone, Maine. Within each of those communities, the families are related on both sides of the border. We have aunts, uncles, cousins, brothers and sisters living on both sides. The border really unites us as opposed to dividing us.

    We are grieving with them jointly because we are all related in that area to our neighbours to the south.

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    Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, while listening to the member for Tobique--Mactaquac, I heard a certain amount of rhetoric. I also heard the questions from the government side. However I want to hear some answers and some taking of responsibility by the Parliament of Canada. What are we going to do about a very real threat that not only threatens our borders but affects the internal safety of our citizens and the economy of the country?

    It is okay for the Minister of Transport to say that he will lock the cockpit doors but how will he make cockpit doors that cannot be kicked down?

    The legislation should be ready and it should be coming forward very quickly. We have a number of issues.

    Does the member know whether the government intends to increase security for not only detecting arms, bombs and such things in baggage but to also have thorough checks at the airports. Who will pay for that? When will it be put in place? Will we reinforce CSIS? Will we reinforce the RCMP? Will we give the military the tools to fight terrorism?

    This is an issue that goes beyond. Our hearts went out first to the victims and to the people who tried to rescue them. Second, now is the time--

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    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. I know this is a subject that many people want to speak on or ask questions and comments, but to facilitate as many members participating as possible we need to stay within the timeframes that we allot ourselves for speeches and for questions and comments. I will take a brief response from the member for Tobique--Mactaquac.

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    Mr. Andy Savoy: Mr. Speaker, we will live up to our NATO commitments and we will stand shoulder to shoulder with our American allies. We will come up with a solution but it will not be a knee-jerk solution. It will be a well thought out, well devised solution that respects the intent of our relationship with the Americans.

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    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would like to address my remarks to one narrow aspect of the motion before us and that is the part of the motion that calls on anti-terrorism legislation that should specifically ban fundraising for the purposes of supporting terrorism anywhere in the world. It is all very well to pass legislation like that but if there is not the ability to actually implement a ban like that then it falls far short of what is desired.

    Mr. Speaker, you of all people will remember that for many years now I have been an active campaigner for the reform of Canada's charity legislation and regulations. You will know and remember, Mr. Speaker, that I did two reports in which I examined some 500 charities. I examined their financial information returns, compared them to the published financial statements that they put out and kept track of them in a general fashion.

    Mr. Speaker, you will also remember that what I found was that Canada's $90 billion charity industry runs essentially without any kind of legislative oversight whatsoever. In other words, the money is being raised by big charities and small charities across the land and is being spent and no one knows how it is being raised or where it is being spent.

    I am the first to say that there are many very good charities but the reality is Canada has become notorious worldwide for the ease with which a terrorist organizations and groups engaged in ethnic conflicts in various parts of the world use Canada's absence of meaningful not for profit legislation in order to raise money here in Canada and transfer those funds to support these conflicts abroad.

    Mr. Speaker, I know you will find this hard to believe and many of the members in the House will probably be surprised to hear this, but the reality is that there are only guidelines for charities in Canadian federal legislation. There are no actual standards of financial reporting. There are no standards of corporate governance and we have a situation where a charity can raise a million dollars or so. A small charity with some ethnic ties abroad can raise this money and there is no mechanism at all for the federal government to determine how that money was raised because there is no requirement to keep receipts. The money can then be disbursed by third parties. It literally can be transferred out of the country and spent by a third party in ways that we will never know.

    This is obviously an invitation to all kinds of abuse. This is not the time, in this particular sensitive time, to actually name the type of organizations or name the specific organizations that I have encountered that are engaged in very unusual activities.

    However, let me give the House an example of what I discovered. I discovered, for example, a very large and well known charity that engages in overseas community project development which was receiving millions of dollars a year from the Canadian government to further these developments in third world countries abroad. When I attempted to get from the charity the names of these organizations, I could get brochures and beautiful pictures and all those kinds of thing, but the charity was never able to supply me with the names of the organizations, the addresses or the telephone numbers. In this particular case it was in India where it was actually operating. The irony was that in this particular instance the Canadian International Development Agency actually sent a team abroad to look at this particular development. They looked at it and made a report but two years later, even though it was still receiving money, there was no trace of it. We have to ask ourselves what this charity was doing with the money that it was actually receiving from the Government of Canada?

    In another instance I found a charity that was not an ethnic charity at all. It was engaged in a certain activity abroad that was regarded in the public interest. I will not say what that activity was but it involved officials from the charity leaving Canada and going to various countries, generally in the Middle East. An audit was done on that charity by CIDA and it was found that the charity officials were carrying tens of thousands of dollars in cash by airplane to the Middle East.

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    Mr. Speaker, I just leave it to your imagination what an organization, what individuals would possibly be doing bringing cash into the Middle East when I would point out to you that the Middle East is not the end of the world. It is possible to have proper electronic transfers of money to this part of the world so you have to ask yourself what is going on.

    The numbers of instances of this kind of thing are, I am sorry to say, legion. I do not like to suggest even for a moment that all charities are engaged in this kind of thing but the reality is that we as a country, indeed we as a federal government, have failed absolutely in our responsibility to Canadians and our responsibility to ethnic Canadians, those people who have settled in Canada and taken out Canadian citizenship or just settled in Canada. Our responsibility to them is to guarantee that they are not subject to pressure from their homelands to finance conflicts that still exist in their homelands. This is not just a question about whether money is being raised in this country to finance terrorism abroad, it is a question of whether money is being raised in this country to finance the ethnic conflicts in the various homelands.

    I have made many representations to government on this. About two years ago it did appear that cabinet was prepared to look at the not for profit sector and bring in some legislation and some rules that particularly pertain to the transparency in their financial dealings. I regret to say that because of, I think, a very strong lobby from the very large charitable organizations and the charity leadership in this country, the government backed off. I think the argument was that the charity industry, even though it is a very large industry, was not willing to accept the red tape that comes from keeping good financial books.

    I should say in passing that under Canadian legislation a charity, no matter how large or how small, does not require a proper auditor to do its books. Basically anyone can do the books of a charity. The only reporting a charity is required to do is a financial information return to Revenue Canada. There is no law on the books that even requires the charity to fill out the lines.

    The official opposition raised the point that the legislation that was introduced, Bill C-16, was designed to lift the charitable registration status of organizations that are suspected by the security services of raising money for illegal activities abroad. What I must point out is that this falls completely short of actually solving the problem or even coming close to answering the problem.

    The reality is that because of the Access to Information Act we cannot see even the non-profit organizations' financial statements to government. In other words, the world police organizations have recognized that because of Canada's open or lack of legislation with respect to charities, we are the most backward of all nations with respect to legislation on charities. Because of that, we are a favoured nation for raising funds, not only for terrorism but for ethnic conflicts and, I fear, even for organized crime.

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    The Deputy Speaker: 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, Lumber Industry.

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    Mr. Art Hanger (Calgary Northeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I listened to the member's comments and he certainly confined them to a certain area when it comes to the fundraising activities of potential terrorist organizations that may or may not exist in Canada, creating an atmosphere of uncertainty as to how a government agency could dissuade or shut down any such operation.

    It is a well known fact that there is a myriad of information accumulated by the RCMP, CSIS and other agencies in Canada. In the particular document I hold in my hand there is a summary of known terrorist organizations in Canada that have been watched and examined thoroughly. The evidence is insurmountable when it comes to their ties outside our country and what those mother organizations are involved in internationally.

    I see no problem in monitoring such groups in Canada. I know that even in the House there have been members of parliament, some knowingly, some unknowingly, participating in fundraising activities put on by these organizations. The information is here and elsewhere to be able to curb such activity that would shut them down once and for all.

    I would like the member to comment on that very subject because this is not a difficult matter to deal with when it comes to passing legislation that will prevent such organizations from existing in Canada.

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    Mr. John Bryden: Mr. Speaker, the point is that we do not have the information because the government has never collected the information. CSIS has its undercover agents, but what I am talking about are thousands of organizations that are collecting money, transferring it abroad and spending it.

    CSIS cannot track every one of those organizations. It is the fault and flaw of this government and governments before it that it is politically incorrect to question charities. The government has made no effort to require charities to be transparent, to keep the same kind of financial books that a for profit organization requires.

    To make it even worse, all non-profit organizations, and I am not talking about charities, are entitled and do operate in financial secrecy, and not even the Prime Minister can tell what they are doing. Nor can CSIS. The member has to appreciate that CSIS has to work within the law and what I am saying is that there is no law for CSIS to work within.

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    Mr. Peter Stoffer (Sackville—Musquodoboit Valley—Eastern Shore, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I would like to go on a different tact with the hon. member regarding concerns people have mentioned about bin Laden having over $300 million. I am sure he does not carry that amount of money around in his pocket or suitcase. He must have that money channelled in offshore accounts, Swiss bank accounts or whatever.

    Does the member see a role for the government to play in offering help to the international community to find out where that money is and in freezing it or taking it away so that these terrorist acts will not be funded in that way?

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    Mr. John Bryden: Mr. Speaker, I was very disappointed in Bill C-22, the money laundering act that has now since passed the Senate. I felt that the same rules that pertained to money laundering at casinos should be applied to charities. Therein there is the same requirement for scrutiny and disclosure and reporting of transfers of large sums from charities because huge sums can now be transferred.

    On the point regarding bin Laden, I have before me a newspaper clipping of some years ago which tells the story of a member of a large charitable organization who was caught crossing the border from the United States into Canada with over $1 million in cash in his trunk and under the carpet of his car. There are many ways for organizations, be they charitable, legal or criminal, to move money around.

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    Mr. Deepak Obhrai (Calgary East, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, before I begin my speech I would like to commend my colleague from the other side who has done extensive work and was completely forthright today when he stood in the House and told the truth regarding the rules and laws which his government refuses to implement. For that I commend him. He has done a great job.

    I would like to begin by extending on behalf of my family, my colleagues and myself our deepest condolences to the families of the victims of Tuesday's unprecedented terrorist attack in the United States.

    What we witnessed a week ago today will forever be ingrained in our minds as a new menace facing all peace loving communities of the world. This act was perpetrated by spiritually bankrupt individuals without conscience and devoid of love who think nothing of the rights of others. I say that they were spiritually bankrupt because these individuals have no love and compassion for others.

    Religious leaders of all faiths have condemned this act and reaffirmed their religions' most important tenet, which is that the taking of innocent lives is never justified.

    I am also concerned with and condemn with the same breath the intolerant acts taking place in North America against minority groups. This is also a crime.

    The death of two individuals in the U.S.A., the beating of a youth in Ottawa, the burning of a Hindu temple in Hamilton and the harassment of Muslims around our nation are all crimes. The full wrath of our law should be brought against those responsible for these acts. Our society is built on tolerance and freedom. These we will protect both domestically and internationally.

    Over 5,000 people died last Tuesday. Those who died came from over 40 countries. This is a crime against humanity and as such we must stand together to fight these crimes. Those who join us are united in brotherhood to fight this menace. Those who refuse to join us will be apologetic forever as we move forward without them.

    Canada has to join this battle or we will become future victims of this menace. Unfortunately we are already victims having also lost citizens in this tragedy.

    As this is international terrorism our focus has fallen on our immigration laws. Let me be clear that this is not about immigration or refugee policy but rather immigration and refugee law.

    The debate concerns the adequacy of our laws to protect us from those who intend to break our laws and use our laws to promote these hideous crimes. We are talking of a small minority but nevertheless a minority that has no conscience. We must guard against them. For that purpose it is important that we have the right laws that allow us to tackle this menace.

    Immigrants and refugees themselves run this course of action because in the end they become the victims of those who break the laws and commit these hideous crimes. Unfortunately we are witnessing these acts.

    Canada is a land of immigrants where diversity is our strength. Let us not allow these criminals to break our strength. Therefore I urge the government to act to ensure that the weak links in our immigration laws are tightened. We must listen to the suggestions of Canadians.

    Calling people who are pointing to the flaws in our immigration laws racists and bigots has the effect of strengthening racists and bigots because terrorists are racists and bigots. I hope the minister of immigration will take note of this.

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    Another area that requires attention is giving law enforcement agencies the tools to fight terrorism. Today's motion is an important step in that direction. Law enforcement officers are our new soldiers in this battle. Let us give them the tools they need and our full support. However I need to say a word of caution to our law enforcement agencies. They should ensure that these tools do not become the tools of harassment of the innocent or they will lose this battle.

    Terrorism is born from poverty. Canada should fight this new war, but Canada should also assist those developing states that are also joining the fight against terrorism. We cannot allow the seeds of terror to be sown in those states that wish to help us in our hour of need.

    We must not forget that most societies are built on respect for human rights, democracy and the rule of law. We cannot allow those few to shake the foundation of what we have built. People have come from around the world to build this free and prosperous society, and this should not change. We should not shake this great foundation.

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    Mr. Greg Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, because of circumstances and a limited debate I will not have a chance to rise on debate today. However I wanted to take the time during questions and comments to simply extend my sympathy to the American people and the families of the victims of that horrible tragedy that took place a week ago today in New York City. I am doing it on behalf of the constituents of New Brunswick Southwest.

    It really drives home the point that none of us are safe in a world of terrorists. It certainly is a war against civilized society. It is a war that we all have to fight. We can all do our part, including every member of parliament. We are depending on the government of this country to show leadership on this issue. We hope that it does.

    We certainly hope that the debate today leads to measures to be taken by the government to do what is necessary because the attack on the United States was not an attack on their country as such. It was an attack upon all of civilized society.

    As Canadians we will pay a high price for that. We already have in the sense that at least 100 Canadians and maybe more have lost their lives in New York. However every one of us has certainly lost a sense of innocence. We do not take our freedoms and the luxuries that we have had as a free and open society as lightly as we did a week ago.

    My sympathies to the American people. I want them to know this because I do share a border with them. Most Canadians live within an hour's drive of the U.S. Personally I will do what I can as a member of parliament to sustain them through this. I will do what I can as a member of parliament to ensure that the Canadian government does the right thing as we follow up on this horrendous event.

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[Translation]

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    Mr. Jean-Yves Roy (Matapédia—Matane, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in his speech, our honourable colleague from Calgary East raised something I consider very important in the light of the events of September 11.

    Among other things, he mentioned international development and poverty. He also spoke of help to developing countries which are also trying to build democracies and to fight violence where possible.

    As the events of September 11 were unfolding, I was attending a meeting of parliamentarians from around the world. There were 1,000 of us gathered in one of the world's poorest countries, in central Africa.

    I noted that cuts in assistance to developing countries have resulted in major tragedies in certain areas of Africa and elsewhere in the world.

    I would like to know the position of the member for Calgary East on international development and the aid we provide to developing countries. We know that Canada has cut its aid to developing countries. If memory serves, we spend less than 0.4% of our GDP on international assistance.

    Could the member for Calgary East tell me his opinion on this?

[English]

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    Mr. Deepak Obhrai: Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for giving me this opportunity to talk about international development. There are two connections here.

    He talked about poverty around the world. The causes of poverty are many. Causes can be attributed to a lack of governance, opportunity and corruption and other issues for which unfortunately the poor have to pay the price. I just returned from Africa where I witnessed the unfortunate tragedy of AIDS and bad governments.

    However, what I was trying to say in my speech against terrorism and what I was trying to say about the support which we need to give to countries that will stand with us to fight this new menace, is that many countries lack the resources to help us in fight these terrorists.

    Those countries, which need assistance, have pledged to stand with us against terrorism. While we have military and naval intelligence and other kinds of solutions, these countries will require assistance to sustain themselves. At the end of the day we do not want these countries, through internal turmoil, to break down creating a new state as we witnessed in Somalia.

    To stop the growth of terrorism and the recruitment of terrorists, it is important for us to assist those countries.

  +-(1700)  

+-

    Mr. Werner Schmidt (Kelowna, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is a very sad and rare opportunity that we have to face at this time in Canada, the United States and in the civilized world a tragedy such as what we had last Tuesday.

    It goes without saying that our condolences and sympathies go out to the parents, friends, associates and all those people who have suffered the loss of loved ones.

    One of the first thoughts I had was how terrible that this happened and I felt immediately the pain of the parents, brothers and sisters who were lost. However, there was a second thought that came to mind, which was what kind of minds would make the kinds of choices or decisions to do what they did. This was something that was done in some kind of vacuum. Somebody thought and planned very carefully what to do, when to do it, where to do it and what the effect would be.

    Who are these terrorists? I have to conclude very carefully that the terrorist is a fanatic who has a disposition for unlimited violence. If that is what a terrorist is, then what we have perpetrated in the world today, as Mr. Schroeder said in Germany, is a war declared against civilization and democracy.

    All democracies will have to get together to fight it, as Tony Blair said. However, probably the best statement was by Mr. Steyn, as reported in the National Post. He said:

    This is freedom's fight--not an argument about “foreign policy” or “tensions and hostilities,” but a war on values.

    It is about joining the fight for democracy and defending civilization. If it is a matter of values, we should look at why we are in this situation. We stand here in some ways almost sanctimoniously saying thank God we are not like that.

    We just heard how we are harbouring certain terrorists in our country, and we say we are not like. How is this possible? I believe this is possible because we have a certain phenomenon developing in our universities and high schools, among our parents and even among the members of parliament. It is called political correctness.

    President Roche, of Hillsdale College, which is a very reputable private college in the United States, reached the conclusion that political correctness was to a large extent to blame. He said that the doctrine of political correctness held that all differences and ideas, values and lifestyles were equally valid

    We have had demonstrated to us as never before that values and lifestyles do differ and that there are some that are more important than others. We certainly do not tolerate or want to value dictatorship in the same way we do democracy, as one example.

    We need to recognize that it is time to make a difference in the values that we hold dear and those that we want to support. I will list what some of the values are.

    The first is truth. If we do not protect the truth we are in serious trouble. A colleague in the House criticized the government for a lack of certain fortitude with regard to certain laws.

    It has penetrated into our high schools and our universities. There is not a person here who has not read about the difficulty in one of our law schools. Kids were saying that it was okay to lie and cheat on exams because everybody did it. We need to establish the truth.

    We have lost a large part of our moral literacy as well. Honour and virtue are very scarce commodities in our society today. It is time that we recognized that honour and virtue are good things to have.

    To a large degree, we have lost trust in one another to a large degree.

    On the one hand we distrust politicians, film makers and television, then we turn around and look to our politicians, film makers and television to tell us the truth, give us the facts and interpret the world around us. It is a contradiction.

  +-(1705)  

    We also have lost trust in our fellow citizens. There are many members in the House from different parties. Somehow we are supposed to be fundamentally different from one another. On these things we must not be different.

    We need to trust one another. We need to be able to depend on one another, but it is more than that. We have lost empathy. We pass people who are suffering and think that it cannot be that bad. That changed last week. We have demonstrated empathy like never before. In a heartfelt manner, people wanted to help. However, many of us will go back callously into our communities and ignore the problems and the suffering that exists there? We need to re-establish our empathy.

    We have also lost the feeling of independence and confidence to solve our own problems. It is almost as if our problems are so big and so complicated that only the government can solve them. The government did not decide upon this terrorist act. This act was decided upon by an individual or a group of individuals. They were confident they could do it and they did it.

    We can solve our problems but they will be solved one person at a time. Where will we start? In the family. We need to recognize the family as the solid, most powerful and effective building block of a society in building a civilization. What has happened? In many instances our children are not in families. They are with single parents. They need the love of a mother and a father. They need the stability of people who have committed their lifetime to each other and their children.

    We have also lost faith to a large degree. I was terribly saddened when I saw 100,000 people assembled on Parliament Hill last Friday in remembrance of what had happened. The Prime Minister talked about prayer but there was no prayer. There was no reference to the spirituality of man.

    We have lost sight of the fact that God is the most important guiding factor in our daily lives. We do not speak about Him in our social gatherings. We have a difficult time speaking about Him in the House. God is real. Whether one likes it or not is another issue. Whether one believes it or not is another issue. The truth stands whether one believes it or not. We can ignore gravity but it does not make it go away.

    How can we protect ourselves? We can do a number of things. I would like to read into the record the words Pope Paul II when he addressed the United Nations in 1995.

    We must not be afraid of the future. We must not be afraid of man. It is no accident that we are here. Each and every human person has been created in the “image and likeness” of the One who is the origin of all that is. We have within us the capacities for wisdom and virtue. With these gifts, and with the help of God's grace, we can build in the next century and the next millennium a civilization worthy of the human person, a true culture of freedom. We can and must do so! And in doing so, we shall see that the tears of this century have prepared the ground for a new springtime of the human spirit.

    Let us dedicate ourselves to a pursuit of truth. Let us dedicate ourselves to a development of empathy. Let us become confident of our independence and our ability to solve problems. Let us trust one another to build a better country for our children and grandchildren.

  +-(1710)  

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I wish to seek unanimous consent to withdraw the motion in the name of the member for Crowfoot, as well as the amendment and replace the entire motion and amendment with the following, in an effort to perhaps have a motion that is acceptable to the entire House, which I hope is the case. The new motion would read that the House mandate the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to study the matter of anti-terrorism legislation and report at the earliest opportunity with recommendations for legislation.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): Does the hon. government House leader have the consent of the House to move the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I want to make the point that this was never brought to us. We had no warning of this whatsoever so we cannot possibly agree to it. We have our motion and it is a good one, worthy of support.

+-

    Mr. Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I commend this side of the House for saying that we want to study this because there are a lot of ramifications. Unfortunately, our friends across the way are using a knee-jerk reaction and bringing forth six points in their motion that need to be studied further.

    I came to this country 30 years ago fleeing tyranny. At that time what was happening in my country of origin was seen to be right. It was unfortunate that later on the prime minister of that country, who was in this country as an educator at York University, was also labelled a terrorist. He later became the prime minister of the country. I say to my friends across the way that we should act in caution. We should not try to brand everyone that way.

    I have a large Tamil community in my riding. If anyone were to read these points they could say that the whole Tamil community could be linked to terrorism in some form. I say that we must act with due caution.

+-

    Mr. Werner Schmidt: Mr. Speaker, I have two comments. First, no terrorist group is mentioned in the motion. That is a matter of fact and we should tell the truth.

    Second, the assumption that if this motion were presented in the form of a bill and it were passed it would prevent terrorism is false. Laws do not make people good.

    We have laws in Canada that say to murder is bad, and we have punishment for that. Does that do away with murder? No. There are still people who choose to defy the law. That could happen here too.

    Do we need to have a law like this? Yes, I think we do. We need to demonstrate to the world that we will not tolerate terrorism. Should we proceed with caution? Absolutely, we must proceed with caution. But terrorism? No.

+-

    Mr. Gary Lunn (Saanich—Gulf Islands, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I want to express my deepest sympathy for every American for what happened on September 11 and every country that lost people in that tragedy.

    As we move forward and we hear the response of what will happen, I want to state that it is critically important for us as parliamentarians and for all Canadians to stand shoulder to shoulder with our government and with our American friends to the south in this time of crisis.

    I hope there will be a measured response that has as its goal the eradication of terrorism, not people. There are innocent people and children in every corner of this world. We need to ensure that there is a sustained response and ensure that it is to eliminate terrorism.

    I have two very young children in my family. They have been deeply affected by this and they keep asking me what has happened. How does the hon. member feel this has impacted on children and how can we help them through this very difficult time?

  +-(1715)  

+-

    Mr. Werner Schmidt: Mr. Speaker, it has affected children very much. Children who are not even in school were glued to the television set and asking their parents if what they were seeing was really that bad. It affected them and they went to bed crying. I know of one family where the children would not go to sleep for a while. They just could not tolerate this. What can we do? I believe we have to have strong families with love and understanding.

[Translation]

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): It being 5.15 p.m., it is my duty to interrupt the proceedings and put forthwith every question necessary to dispose of the business of supply.

    Is the House ready for the question?

    Some hon. members: Question.

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): The question is on the amendment. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the amendment?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): All those in favour will please say yea.

    Some hon. members: Yea.

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): All those opposed will please say nay.

    Some hon. members:Nay.

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): In my opinion, the nays have it.

    And more than five members having risen:

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): Call in the members.

*   *   *

  +-(1750)  

+-

    (The House divided on the amendment, which was negatived on the following division:)

+

(Division No. 139)

YEAS

Members

Ablonczy
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bailey
Benoit
Borotsik
Brison
Cadman
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Cummins
Day
Doyle
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Gallant
Goldring
Gouk
Grewal
Grey (Edmonton North)
Hanger
Herron
Hill (Macleod)
Hill (Prince George--Peace River)
Hilstrom
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Lunn (Saanich--Gulf Islands)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Manning
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Mayfield
McNally
Meredith
Mills (Red Deer)
Moore
Obhrai
Pallister
Pankiw
Penson
Peschisolido
Rajotte
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Reynolds
Ritz
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
Stinson
Strahl
Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest)
Thompson (Wild Rose)
Toews
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
White (North Vancouver)
Williams
Yelich

Total: 70

NAYS

Members

Adams
Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Asselin
Augustine
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bagnell
Baker
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélanger
Bellehumeur
Bellemare
Bennett
Bergeron
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Bigras
Binet
Blaikie
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Bonwick
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brien
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Cardin
Carignan
Carroll
Castonguay
Catterall
Cauchon
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Comartin
Comuzzi
Copps
Crête
Cullen
Cuzner
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Desrochers
DeVillers
Dhaliwal
Dion
Dromisky
Drouin
Dubé
Duceppe
Duhamel
Easter
Eggleton
Eyking
Farrah
Finlay
Fontana
Fournier
Fry
Gagliano
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallaway
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godfrey
Godin
Goodale
Graham
Guarnieri
Guay
Guimond
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Hubbard
Ianno
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karetak-Lindell
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Knutson
Kraft Sloan
Laframboise
Laliberte
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lastewka
Lebel
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lill
Lincoln
Longfield
Loubier
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marceau
Marcil
Marleau
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McCormick
McDonough
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Ménard
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Normand
Nystrom
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paquette
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peterson
Pettigrew
Phinney
Picard (Drummond)
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Plamondon
Pratt
Proctor
Proulx
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Robinson
Rocheleau
Rock
Roy
Saada
Sauvageau
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Hilaire
St-Jacques
St-Julien
Steckle
Stewart
Stoffer
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tobin
Tonks
Torsney
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Ur
Vanclief
Venne
Volpe
Wappel
Wasylycia-Leis
Whelan
Wilfert
Wood

Total: 198

PAIRED

Members

Bourgeois
Cotler
Duplain
Gray (Windsor West)
Perron
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)

Total: 6

+-

    The Speaker: I declare the motion negatived.

    The next question is on the main motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

    The Speaker: All those in favour will please say yea.

    Some hon. members: Yea.

    The Speaker: All those opposed will please say nay.

    Some hon. members: Nay.

    The Speaker: In my opinion, the nays have it.

    And more than five members having risen.

*   *   *

  +-(1800)  

[English]

+-

    (The House divided on the motion, which was negatived on the following division:)

-

(Division No. 140)

YEAS

Members

Ablonczy
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bailey
Benoit
Borotsik
Brison
Cadman
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Cummins
Day
Doyle
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Gallant
Goldring
Gouk
Grewal
Grey (Edmonton North)
Hanger
Herron
Hill (Macleod)
Hill (Prince George--Peace River)
Hilstrom
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Lunn (Saanich--Gulf Islands)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Manning
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Mayfield
McNally
Meredith
Mills (Red Deer)
Moore
Obhrai
Pallister
Pankiw
Penson
Peschisolido
Rajotte
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Reynolds
Ritz
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
Stinson
Strahl
Thompson (New Brunswick Southwest)
Thompson (Wild Rose)
Toews
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
White (North Vancouver)
Williams
Yelich

Total: 70

NAYS

Members

Adams
Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Asselin
Augustine
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bagnell
Baker
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bellehumeur
Bellemare
Bennett
Bergeron
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Bigras
Binet
Blaikie
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Bonwick
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brien
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Cardin
Carignan
Carroll
Castonguay
Catterall
Cauchon
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Comartin
Comuzzi
Copps
Crête
Cullen
Cuzner
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Desrochers
DeVillers
Dhaliwal
Dion
Dromisky
Drouin
Dubé
Duceppe
Duhamel
Easter
Eggleton
Eyking
Farrah
Finlay
Fontana
Fournier
Fry
Gagliano
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallaway
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godfrey
Godin
Goodale
Graham
Guarnieri
Guay
Guimond
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Hubbard
Ianno
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karetak-Lindell
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Knutson
Kraft Sloan
Laframboise
Laliberte
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lastewka
Lebel
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lill
Lincoln
Longfield
Loubier
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marceau
Marcil
Marleau
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McCormick
McDonough
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Ménard
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Normand
Nystrom
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paquette
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peterson
Pettigrew
Phinney
Picard (Drummond)
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Plamondon
Pratt
Proctor
Proulx
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Robinson
Rocheleau
Rock
Roy
Saada
Sauvageau
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Hilaire
St-Jacques
St-Julien
Steckle
Stewart
Stoffer
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tobin
Tonks
Torsney
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Ur
Vanclief
Venne
Volpe
Wappel
Wasylycia-Leis
Whelan
Wilfert
Wood

Total: 199

PAIRED

Members

Bourgeois
Cotler
Duplain
Gray (Windsor West)
Perron
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)

Total: 6

+-

    The Speaker: I declare the motion lost.

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Now that we have disposed of the motion that was before the House, I wish to seek unanimous consent for the following motion.

    I move that the House mandate the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to study the matter of anti-terrorism legislation and report at the earliest opportunity with recommendations for legislation.

[Translation]

+-

    The Speaker: Does the government House leader have unanimous consent of the House to present the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

[English]

+-

    The Speaker: There is no consent. It being 6.00 o'clock, the House will now proceed to the consideration of Private Members' Business as listed on today's Order Paper.


+-Private Members' Business

[Private Members' Business]

*   *   *

  +-(1805)  

[English]

+-Adverse Drug Reactions

+-

    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP) moved:

    That, in the opinion of this House, the government should immediately, in consultation with provincial and territorial governments, establish a system for the mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions.

    She said: Mr. Speaker, it is very hard to initiate this debate following two days of very critical discussion in the House around a most extraordinary turn of events in our society. It is very hard to clear our heads and focus on another issue. It is certainly hard to set aside our thoughts and emotions surrounding the terrorist attacks in Washington and New York City one week ago today.

    We have set aside the ordinary business of the House to deal with extraordinary events and so we should have. All of our thoughts today are with the families, friends and co-workers of those who died, who are lost or who perished in those destructive acts of horror perpetrated against the people in the United States, but which also affected many Canadians and people around the world.

    Our thoughts today are with the people affected by this tragedy. All of us in the House share the sentiments of sympathy expressed by our constituents. Certainly the people of Winnipeg North Centre are no exception. They would want me to extend their condolences to everyone affected by that tragedy and to share their feelings of grief, sorrow, anger and uncertainty around those terrorist activities.

    They would also want us to return to normal business, to carry out the priorities of Canadians while still being vigilant in pursuing the eradication of terrorism. We attempt to do that now, to make the transition to regular ordinary business of the House on other issues of significance for Canadians.

    The matter before the House today pales in comparison to the events we have had to deal with over the last week. However, the motion is a matter of significant public policy that ought to be addressed very seriously by members in the House today.

    The motion addresses the question of the health and well-being of Canadians. It seeks to find a way to end preventable deaths in our society. It seeks to ensure that the medications people are required to take because of illness are safe beyond a reasonable doubt. The motion is quite simple. It calls upon the government in co-operation with provincial and territorial governments to put in place a system of mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions.

    It is estimated that approximately 10,000 people a year die of adverse drug reactions in Canada. It is difficult to ascertain the precise number of deaths that occur because of adverse drug reactions, but it is fair to say that the numbers are very high and many could be prevented.

    I am not so naive as to believe that 10,000 deaths a year could be prevented by simply putting in place a system of mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions. However, I am convinced, as are many others, that if we take steps to require a systematic way of sharing information on adverse reactions, if we require our physicians and our hospitals to report any problems associated with drugs and their interaction with other drugs or with foods, then we will have made a big difference. We probably would help prevent unnecessary deaths, unnecessary illness and difficult circumstances caused by this situation.

  +-(1810)  

    The issue crystallized for many of us when we learned about the death of Vanessa Young in March 2000. Vanessa Young was a 15 year old teenager from Oakville, Ontario who died because of the drug she was prescribed, called Prepulsid. That drug was prescribed for the wrong circumstances. By all accounts it was a preventable death. Her father, Terence Young, has carried on with a mission since his daughter's passing to ensure that we as a society learn the lessons of Vanessa's death. It compels us to take action today.

    We certainly became much more aware of the problems associated with adverse drug reactions and the absence of policy in this area as a result of Vanessa's death. We owe it to her to ensure that her death is not in vain, that we learn lessons from this tragedy and ensure that people in similar circumstances are not affected by something that is so preventable and so easy to grasp in terms of solutions.

    Over the past year I have raised in the House on a couple of occasions the issue of Vanessa Young in particular and the question of adverse drug reactions in general. Our concern really emerged from the knowledge that prior to Vanessa Young's death in March 2000 there were reports of adverse reactions to that drug. Certainly deaths were already associated with the taking of Prepulsid, yet we failed as a government and as a country to convey that information, to share that knowledge and to ensure that all physicians and all pharmacists were aware of the dangers of that drug when prescribed under certain conditions.

    I raised with the House at that time that Health Canada had information it could have shared and acted upon many months before the death of Vanessa Young but it failed to do so.

    The point of today's debate is not to lay blame but to find solutions. As a result of Vanessa's death there was a coroner's inquest and the jury made a number of recommendations. One is the mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions within 48 hours of the incident taking place. That seems to be a very responsible and reasonable solution to a serious problem and one on which there is no reason to delay and to avoid action.

    During the coroner's inquest, Health Canada officials were reported as saying that they thought it was a good idea but it was beyond the jurisdiction of the federal government. It is quite apparent today that the establishment of a system to require mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions is well within federal jurisdiction. Certainly it is part of the responsibility that is handed to government through the Food and Drugs Act and requires action and implementation.

    It would be a great disservice to Canadians for anyone to argue that this matter is beyond the jurisdiction of the federal government and on which there can be no immediate action. Not only is there the authority under the Food and Drugs Act for the government to act immediately, but there are also models from other jurisdictions on how a system could work. In countries like Britain and France there are models of mandatory reporting that work and which could be employed here in Canada.

    Previously there have been pilot projects in Canada that show the idea can work and ought to be developed here. The Ontario Medical Association conducted a pilot project for the Canadian Medical Association about 10 years ago with great success.

    Today we propose that precise idea. We hope that the government will see it as a valuable contribution to a very important area and that it will act upon it as soon as possible.

    Many concerns have been expressed over the last number of years about changes in drug safety policies in Health Canada, about reduced resources, about an inability on the part of officials to track adverse drug reactions and to get that information out to the appropriate professionals in our society.

  +-(1815)  

    The problem was identified clearly in the coroner's inquest. Not only was the question of voluntary reporting outlined as a serious problem but so too was a lack of resources and communication on the part of Health Canada officials. These problems are manageable. They can be corrected without a lot of effort or cost, and this would save lives.

    In developing my material for today's debate we spoke with Vanessa Young's father, Terence Young, who is continuing his battle to ensure that justice is done and changes are made in light of the lessons learned from Vanessa's death.

    One of the comments he made about mandatory reporting was that it is “the only way to break the conspiracy of silence which the drug companies have created and nurtured, Health Canada has condoned and to which doctors have acquiesced”. That is a strong statement based on the reality he had to face with the death of his daughter. They are words we should listen to carefully and take seriously.

    We know that over the last 10 years the use of drug therapy as an important part of our medical system has increased dramatically. However we know at the same time that our systems, resources and policies for dealing with the dramatic increase in the use of drug therapies has not changed or increased.

    We are asking the government to recognize that pharmaceuticals play an important part in our medical system, in treating illness and in protecting health and well-being.

    However for goodness' sake let us recognize the hazards that come with drug therapies. Governments must employ vigilance to ensure safety is preserved and protected at all costs.

    I will conclude by citing again the information we have regarding deaths associated with adverse reactions. I mentioned at the outset that there are estimates of approximately 10,000 people a year dying from adverse drug reactions. That is a tremendous toll on our society that should be addressed. We know from other studies that the problem is real and that the estimates are in line with experience and knowledge.

    A study in the United States has shown that in a sample of 10 drugs pulled off U.S. markets for safety reasons between 1997 to 2000, 10% of the adult population in the U.S. had at one time taken the medications. We also know that the number of adverse reactions reported to the FDA almost doubled between 1993 and 1999.

    We know from studies in Canada, in particular a 1999 study by Joel Lexchin, an expert in the field of drugs and pharmaceuticals, that in that year there were 2,900 deaths from adverse reactions in Ontario alone.

    The toll is great. The costs to our health care system are large and could be prevented. This is a matter that falls within federal jurisdiction. The federal government has the ability under the Food and Drug Act to take action. It is responsible for ensuring the safety of drugs for all Canadians.

    Today we ask the government to exert that authority, take responsibility for this serious issue and move as quickly as possible to address the concerns we have enunciated today. These concerns became apparent during the coroner's inquest into the death of Vanessa Young and are very much a part of public policy debate in Canada today.

    We ask the government to move seriously on this recommendation and implement, as expeditiously as possible, a system of mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions.

  +-(1820)  

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    Ms. Bonnie Brown (Oakville, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I congratulate the member for Winnipeg North Centre on her initiative in bringing forward this motion. All Canadians want to know that the prescribed medications they take are safe. They place tremendous confidence in the ability of Health Canada to provide health care professionals with up to date drug safety information. Health Canada is open to suggestions or new activities that could increase its capacity to detect drug safety problems and thereby avoid serious adverse reactions to drugs taken by Canadians.

    The government welcomes the motion by the NDP health critic that it should immediately, in consultation with provincial and territorial governments, establish a system for mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions. Such a system should address not only the quantity but the quality of reports received.

    This follows up on one of the 59 recommendations that came out of the coroner's inquest into the death of Vanessa Young who died at the age of 15 while taking the prescribed drug prepulsid. Her death was a sad event in my home riding of Oakville. I was fortunate enough to have known Vanessa Young and her parents. I saw the community grieving at her death. It was a tragedy.

    Evidence presented at the inquest showed that the current system for reporting adverse drug reaction in Canada is not organized to its full potential. The inquest identified the need to implement improvements that would enable Health Canada to compile information on drug safety more quickly and thereby act faster on potentially dangerous situations once they are identified.

    The jury recommended that it be mandatory for health care professionals to forward information to Health Canada on all serious adverse drug reactions within 48 hours. The inquest used the same definition of serious adverse reaction that is currently found in our food and drug regulations.

    Before discussing the many issues pertaining to mandatory reporting I will give a bit of background on the approval and post-market surveillance programs of Health Canada.

    First, no drug is authorized for sale in our country before it has gone through a rigorous review process. Once a drug is on the market Health Canada continues to monitor it for adverse reactions, investigate complaints or reported problems and update conditions of its use via changes to the product monograph. If necessary it can remove a drug from the market.

    As well, the product licensing framework that will soon be implemented has defined mandatory reporting requirements regarding emerging safety issues in other countries.

    Another current initiative is the collaboration between Canada and the U.S. in a shared adverse events reporting system. Once implemented such a database would enable earlier detection of drug safety problems than is currently possible.

    A mandatory system for adverse drug reaction reporting has great potential as an improvement to the current system. However all aspects of such reporting must be carefully weighed.

    For example, if mandatory reporting generated a higher number of quality reports of drug safety problems it would increase the ability of Health Canada to determine such problems. However at present Health Canada has no clear evidence that mandatory reporting would result in the submission of quality information and thereby substantially increase its capacity to detect drug safety issues.

    Other countries have reported success with mandatory reporting. France has mandatory reporting yet does not seem to have a significantly higher number of reports than countries without it. Nor does it detect drug safety signals at a higher rate than countries that do not have mandatory reporting. France has also found it problematic to enforce mandatory reporting. Because of issues of patient confidentiality it is difficult to gain access to physicians' offices where much of the reporting is done.

    I support the motion as a means of strengthening Health Canada's ability to generate drug safety signals. However there are aspects of it that require further clarification and discussion.

  +-(1825)  

    First, who is expected to report? Should it only be doctors or should pharmacists, nurses or other health care professionals report? What about the time frame for reporting? In addition, what about issues of patient confidentiality? The implications of mandatory reporting need to be thought out and its scope and expectations clearly defined so that informed decisions can be made in moving this motion forward into action.

    Some of the other initiatives aimed at strengthening the post-market surveillance capacity of Health Canada are the adverse event reporting system currently used by the United States and the plans of Health Canada to partner with the U.S. in this system. It is among one the largest databases of its kind in the world and is specifically designated to assess the risks associated with drugs that are approved for sale. The U.S. has several years of experience using it. It contains close to three million adverse drug reaction reports. Each year about 300,000 new adverse reactions are entered. We think that partnering with the FDA and the use of this database will provide a powerful tool to enable Health Canada to detect potential drug safety issues in a more timely manner than is currently possible.

    Another initiative is the creation of a joint committee between Health Canada and provincial and territorial health professional groups to examine the effectiveness of the risk information delivery system among all concerned parties.

    In addition to their input to the issue of mandatory adverse drug reaction reporting, this joint committee will be asked to evaluate risk communication tools and techniques used to inform health care professionals and the general public with a view to improving their effectiveness. Ultimately this committee will report its findings, including any recommendations for improvement, to the coroner within one year of the date of the Vanessa Young verdict, which will be April 24, 2002.

    Health Canada has also had discussions with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons and the Canadian College of Family Medicine as to their interest in incorporating new drug risk information into their maintenance of competency programs for physicians. This initiative will help ensure that physicians keep current on drug risk information disseminated by Health Canada or other reputable information sources.

    I wish to assure members of the House and all Canadians that Health Canada is actively seeking more effective ways to identify drug safety problems and to manage them in a timely manner. Health Canada values the health and well-being of Canadians above everything else. Our country has a good safety record with respect to drugs.

    The motion to establish a mandatory reporting system is one potential step toward improving the availability of drug safety information and in identifying risks that could pose life threatening situations.

    Identifying risks posed by drugs and communicating such risks in a timely manner is what Canadians want. I know I can call on the members of the House to support our future initiatives to improve the post-market surveillance activities of Health Canada among which mandatory reporting is one.

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    Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I too congratulate the member for Winnipeg North Centre for the intent of her motion. She is dealing with an issue that I struggle with as a physician.

    Some of our patients have adverse reactions from time to time through no fault of their own and through no fault of ours. It is an unfortunate side effect of practising medicine. All that we can do to prevent other tragedies like Vanessa's from happening needs to be implemented.

    The motion put forward today would initiate an immediate consultation with provincial and territorial governments to establish a system for the mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions. While the intent is worth while, practically speaking it is impossible to do.

    The member would be wise to separate out and focus the motion on the particularly tragic situation of Vanessa Young as being the worst possible case in that someone dies as a result of taking medications.

    If we focus the motion on having mandatory reporting for fatal or near fatal drug reactions, the motion has a lot of merit and is doable. However to merely say that the motion would deal with adverse drug reactions would be impossible.

    When a patient is having a reaction we do not know whether that reaction is in fact due to a drug, a disease, or whether it is due to something else entirely, so we are unsure.

    If we are trying to prevent fatal reactions then mandatory reporting and transmitting the distribution of the information on drugs that may be causing fatal or near fatal problems is absolutely important, and historically we have been able to do that.

    The fact that this happened with prepulsid is important because all practitioners knew that it had taken place very quickly. I would like to draw to member's attention to a number of other issues. The question is how much of a problem is it.

    Some people quote that 10,000 people die from adverse drug reactions. If we look at the statistics it shows something very different. For example, in Ontario between 1992 and 1997 there were 16,300 admissions per year for adverse drug reactions. How many people died? About .05% of the people actually died from adverse drug reactions. If we look at the country that amounts to about 1,824 deaths per year. That is a lot of people.

    However, given the number of people taking drugs and medications, it demonstrates that a lot of people are taking medications and the numbers are a lot smaller than has been actually described at times. Approximately 1,824 people per year died unnecessary deaths. If we can do other things to lessen our mortality figures then we ought to do it.

    One thing that we can do is to publish where there have been fatal drug reactions in something like The Canada Gazette. This is a public document to which all Canadians can have access. A good modified motion would include that information about fatal or near fatal drug reactions be published in The Canada Gazette. It would give everyone a red light.

    Another thing we need to look at is how drugs are assessed to determine when they are a danger to society or to the patient. As the government has removed a lot of money from the health protection branch of Health Canada, we need to look at the manner in which the safety of drugs is determined. We have some serious questions on whether that has been eroded over the last few years.

    The government should make a transparent investigation into the health protection branch to determine the method by which drugs are assessed as to their effectiveness and whether they pose a danger to patients. This examination must be made public.

    We should also look at drug costs and how they are passed. We know that the cost of drugs to the public coffers is actually quite large and we need to determine ways in which we can lessen that.

  +-(1830)  

    As we age there will be a greater need for medications. With the cost of medications rising, we need to look at ways in which we can decrease costs.

    The patent protection that exists now has roughly existed for 20 years throughout the west. However there are a number of loopholes where patents on medications can actually be lengthened. Just before a patent expires, an infringement lawsuit can be brought by a non-generic patent company that would extend a patent for up to 30 months. They can also extend it for periods of six months by changing the patent slightly, such as changing the colour of the pill or some other superficial change to the medication which would actually extend the patent protection over and beyond the expiry of the patent.

    Those loopholes need to be closed off because that is not what patents were intended to do. When we allow loopholes, the public pay a much higher cost because they do not have access to the generic medications in a timely fashion.

    Serious issues took place when certain companies in the U.S., and I am sure they were in the minority, paid generic companies not to manufacture generic drugs, which extended the control of patent drug companies over a drug. This is also collusion, which is illegal under the laws of the land. We have also seen applications by brand name companies that have actually pushed their control over and beyond what was its intent.

    The issue of adverse drug reactions is something that is very much of concern to all health care practitioners as well as the public. As the member for Winnipeg North Centre has put it, the intent is to ensure that the drug reactions that occur and put people in danger are known, not only to the public, but also to health care practitioners and that it is stopped at source. Again, a motion should be put forth that deals with fatal and nearly fatal drug reactions. This information should be displayed to physicians and to the public in a central location. We also need to look at the relationships between drug companies and Health Canada and how drugs are approved.

    I have just returned from a trip to West Africa where I had the opportunity to distribute a number of medications to people in dire need in one of the poorest countries of the world. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the research based drug pharmaceutical companies that donated more than $5,000 worth of medication. I publicly thank them for this generous gesture. It is a program that enables physicians travelling abroad to distribute drugs to some of the most impoverished people in the world who essentially have nothing.

  +-(1835)  

[Translation]

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    Mr. Réal Ménard (Hochelaga--Maisonneuve, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I too would like to thank and congratulate our colleague who sat with us on the Standing Committee on Health, for her excellent initiative, in principle.

    I believe it would have been advisable for our colleague to have had more to say on how all this would operate. I think we have no great difficulty in subscribing to the principle of providing the maximum information on the effects of drugs, particularly prescription drugs, but this could also apply to over-the-counter medicines.

    As for knowing how this is going to be put into practice, we must admit that our colleague was not too forthcoming with details.

    For example, Canada has a system of mandatory reporting of certain diseases. Taking AIDS as my example, when someone dies in hospital of acquired immune deficiency syndrome, the health professionals, the physicians, are required to report it. There is a national registry.

    This gives the Canadian centre for epidemioliogy an idea of the number of deaths from AIDS, obviously so that they may have some understanding of the face of the epidemic. When they do, they will have a better grasp of the situation.

    In the area of concern to us here, we are told that every year, people, apparently some 10,000, die from a drug reaction.

    This immediately raises two questions. Does this mean that, by authorizing use of the drug, starting as a new experimental drug that has been approved under the regulations within a known process requiring clinical tests and the provision of monographs, a process that seems to be pretty rigorous, Health Canada has failed in its statutory obligations and allowed a drug to be sold that has harmful effects?

    Does this mean that, in prescribing a medication, a health professional, a physician, has improperly assessed the bio-availability and bio-reactivity of the various individuals taking that drug?

    This is where it is not easy to draw the line. Would a better information system make it possible to avoid situations like the one described to us by the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre? Perhaps. But I believe questions need to be asked about the share of the responsibility that lies with Health Canada, the health professionals, and the physicians.

    Second, I believe that if we are to analyze or study a motion such as the one before us, we need to situate it in a much broader context. Of course we must investigate the drug certification system, to model it after the system of reportable diseases, but we must also look into the whole issue of drug costs.

    In this regard, I agree completely with the previous speaker's comments, and I would like to share some figures on this.

    In researching this speech, I reread what was written by the National Forum on Health. Members will remember that the Prime Minister set up the National Forum on Health in 1995. The forum's report was tabled in 1997.

    The report reminds us that between 1975 and 1995, drug costs in Canada climbed from $1.1 billion to $9.2 billion. These are the figures available from 1994, so we can expect that the numbers have grown even more since then.

    A number of witnesses told us that among the most expensive costs in health care, it is drug-related costs that have gone up the quickest.

  +-(1840)  

    It is not unusual to observe that for many governments, whether it be the governments of Quebec, Ontario and likely Manitoba as well, health care spending represents 12, 13, 14 or 15% of their budgets, and in some cases more.

    Mr. Speaker, you seem very informed on these issues. According to figures published by the National Forum on Health, we spent on average 12.7% in 1994; that figure is probably much higher today. Would it not be wise to refer to the Standing Committee on Health measures that would enable us to see how we could better control drug costs?

    Some time ago, the government of Quebec held a parliamentary commission. The commission, known as the Good Samaritan was made up of a group of doctors. They proposed a certain number of solutions that I would like to share with my colleagues, and study in parliamentary committee.

    The balance between brand name drug and generic drug industries is not easily called into question. Before the summer adjournment, we passed a bill from the other place, Bill S-15, a decision by the World Trade Organization whereby Canada has to provide all Canadian patents the same protection, be they on intellectual property, copyright or drugs. That means that Canada has little manoeuvring room to review the Patents Act, since the WTO rendered a decision.

    However, could we not approach things in a way that would allow us to make broader use of our generic drugs industry while not losing sight of the fact that each time a new drug comes onto the market, hundreds of millions of dollars are required for research?

    The first solution proposed by the Good Samaritan Commission was to recommend to the government of Quebec that it permit, as other provinces do, the expanded sale of generic drugs. The commission considered the abolition of this rule would mean an immediate savings of $45 million annually.

    Second, and this ties in with our NDP colleague's concerns, it is public knowledge that physicians prescribe drugs much too generously.

    The example was given of antibiotics prescribed for the flu. The commission said that if doctors received better training, we are talking about training in connection with the writing of prescriptions, there could be savings of 10%. The Good Samaritan commission, composed of doctors, estimated that if health professionals, particularly doctors, were given better training, 10% of the $1 billion in drug costs could be saved. This would save the public treasury, in this case the government of Quebec, $100 million.

    The commission also talked about prescribing less expensive drugs. One extremely interesting example was given. The commission said that doctors prescribe drugs that are far too expensive because they themselves, as health care professionals, are often unaware of the cost of drugs.

    The example of ulcers was given. I hope that I myself will not be too responsible for giving you ulcers, Mr. Speaker, but should anyone in the House have them, three drugs were mentioned: Losec, Acinétidine, and Raniditine.

    Losec costs $2.20 a tablet, Raniditine 40 cents a tablet, and Acinétidine nine cents a tablet. These drugs are used for similar therapeutic purposes. If all doctors whose patients had ulcers were to prescribe the least expensive drug, $50 million annually could be saved.

    I know that my allotted time is up, but I will conclude by saying that these are issues the Standing Committee on Health should take a serious look at.

  +-(1845)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland--Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to enter into the discussion on the motion made by the member for Winnipeg North Centre. It proposes to put into place a system of mandatory reporting for adverse drug reactions.

    My first reaction is surprise that it is not already in place, but one thing about our job is that we often get surprises and this is a surprise to me that there is no mandatory requirement for that. I noticed in reading the minutes of the subcommittee on private members' business that I am not the only one who is surprised.

    The Liberal member for Hull--Aylmer was also very surprised. He asked if there is not anything through Health Canada that is compulsory. The member for Winnipeg North Centre replied, no, stating that is why it was raised.

    The member for Hull--Aylmer again asked if there was no system whatsoever. There is no system whatsoever to require reporting of an adverse drug reaction and that is why this is a very appropriate matter to bring before the House and is something that we should be considering in the way we are, and perhaps even as a motion.

    It is an important matter. I thank the member for Winnipeg North Centre for bringing it to our attention.

    In her appearance before the subcommittee on private members' business shortly before the summer recess, the hon. member spoke of the tragic and unfortunate death of Vanessa Young, who passed away after taking Prepulsid. She said that was one of the reasons that pushed her to bring the motion forward. Indeed, seemingly preventable incidents such as this one clearly reveal the need to review departmental regulations regarding the reporting of adverse drug reactions. It only makes sense.

    In light of the preventability of harm caused by these adverse affects, and in light of the increasing reliance on drugs in our health care system, this is clearly a matter worthy of the attention of the Department of Health and, indeed, the health minister. Measures such as the one proposed by the hon. member for Winnipeg North Centre are important because they go to the very heart of the issue of informed choice. This is about giving consumers and patients the information they need to make wise decisions about their health and the health of their families.

    My party has long recognized the contribution of Canada's pharmaceutical industry to economic growth and innovation. The proof, as I have pointed out, is in the growing importance of drugs and the delivery of health services.

    What is important now is for the government to provide the necessary regulatory framework to ensure that Canadians are best able to benefit from the advancement in pharmaceuticals but at the same time are protected from some of the potential dangers.

    I believe this initiative moves the debate in the right direction. I encourage the member to pursue her efforts in bringing this issue to the attention of the government again and again. If a private member's bill is ever brought to the House, it is my hope that it will be chosen as votable. To be sure there are important questions that need answers, such as how much a system like this would cost, who would implement it and what the federal-provincial ramifications are of any such regulations.

    I encourage the hon. member to toughen the language of any future motion or bill when it comes to federal-provincial co-operation. Simply put, when it comes to the government, consultation is just not enough. The government has shown itself perfectly capable of talking the talk of collaborative federalism while developing policies as it, and only it, sees fit.

    If this comes back as a private member's bill I can assure the member for Winnipeg North Centre that I will be supporting the initiative and I thank her for bringing it forth.

  +-(1850)  

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    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis: Mr. Speaker, first let me say how much I have appreciated the seriousness with which members of parliament have taken this issue. I have appreciated the input from the members of all parties who have spoken in the House today.

    It is clear that there is a general consensus in this place for action with regard to adverse reactions caused by pharmaceuticals in our society today. There are obviously differences in approach. Various suggestions have been made about how we can pursue this matter. I have listened seriously and will come back with further suggestions and recommendations based on that advice.

    I am certainly encouraged by the words from the member from Oakville, the chairperson of the health committee, who I understand has spoken on behalf of the government and has given us a very clear indication that the present government is taking this recommendation very seriously.

    At the end of my remarks I was going to move the usual motion to seek unanimous consent to make this motion votable. I will not do that today given the words from the government side and the clear indication of support from the member from Oakville who has said the government will be taking this under advisement, looking at it very seriously, and making recommendations before the year since the inquest into Vanessa Young's death has passed.

    That means we can expect action on this matter no later than April 2002. Mr. Speaker, you can be sure we will be holding the government to account for those intentions and pursuing every avenue we can to make that a reality.

    A couple of other suggestions were made that deserve quick comment. The member for Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca has indicated that perhaps we should look at a system that separates out fatal or near fatal reactions from this broad request for mandatory reporting. I will pursue that carefully, but I want to stress that I think the purpose of this motion is to take every precaution we can to ensure that people do not experience death or near death experiences.

    I think a broader mandate is required in this instance and I have yet to hear any substantive arguments for why this would be so difficult to implement. In fact the suggestions made from others in the House indicate that it is a feasible idea that could be implemented fairly quickly.

    I want to also say to my colleague from the Bloc, the member for Hochelaga--Maisonneuve, that he raises a very important issue about the House looking at the whole issue of drug costs, which is indeed the fastest rising element of our health care system. We know in fact that drug costs have risen over 87% in the last decade.

    As a parliament and as a health committee we need to look at the reasons for those cost increases. We need to look at patent protection. We need to look at over prescribing. We need to look at people not filling prescriptions because of a lack of resources to buy expensive drugs. We need to look at the whole range of issues that are driving up the costs of our health care system and in fact putting our whole medicare system on a very weak footing. It is a very important issue that we have to pursue.

    In the meantime, today we look to addressing one part of the problem facing our health care system and that is the serious costs in terms of human health and sustainability of our system because of adverse drug reactions. We can do something about that. It takes not only reporting of those incidents, it requires good quality reporting, sharing of the information and action on the part of the government.

    Let us not forget that with regard to the death of Vanessa Young mandatory reporting was part of the problem, but more critical was the inaction of the government when it knew that there were adverse drug reactions, that there were serious illnesses associated with the use of this drug Prepulsid and that there were deaths occurring because of Prepulsid being available on the market.

    We have to call for vigilance on all fronts. Again I thank all members for sharing in this very important debate and for their valuable advice.

  +-(1855)  

[Translation]

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    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): 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]

*   *   *

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    A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved.

*   *   *

[English]

-

-Lumber Industry

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    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the opportunity to raise again the question on the softwood lumber industry in Canada. I raised it several months ago. It is now even more urgent since the September 4 decision by the U.S. department of commerce to impose a 19.3% countervail charge against the softwood lumber industry.

    The industry is hurting very dramatically right now because of this incredible countervail charge. Many jobs are being lost and businesses are closing. Today I met with members of the Canadian Lumber Remanufacturers Alliance. Because of the nature of their business they are hurting more than others. They are a value added industry, which means that the countervail is charged not only on the price of raw material, not only on the mill gate price, but on the border ready price, after the value added, after the labour and after the Canadian content has been put on. It results in a doubling of duty for the Canadian Lumber Remanufacturers Alliance members.

    It is extremely serious for them. The impact will mean closures and failures in the industry. They are seeking an exemption in the short term. They are seeking a long term resolution to resolve this ongoing issue which pops up every five years. The industry has to go through tremendous turmoil and aggravation. They want it resolved, as does the entire industry.

    Two weeks ago I had the honour of accompanying the right hon. member for Calgary Centre to a meeting. We met with the vice-president of the United States about this very issue. We informed him of our concerns and also of the intention of new British Columbia premier Gordon Campbell to reconsider their marketing approach, which has been part of the excuse used by the U.S. industry to cause the government to impose these countervail charges and anti-dumping charges that are still pending.

    We provided the vice-president with material given to us by Premier Campbell which indicated that they have the intention of moving toward a more market driven pricing initiative or regime. He welcomed this initiative and he was very encouraged by it. He and his officials acknowledged that this would help remove the excuses and the tools that the U.S. industry uses to pry the government into imposing these taxes.

    We want to applaud the premier of British Columbia for these efforts. We encourage him to move ahead toward a more market driven price as he has proposed. We think that after these consultations with the Americans, by moving to a more market driven pricing schedule many of the excuses used by the Americans would disappear. The administration would then move to resolve the issue and move to a free trade regime.

    At this very important time, Canadian officials from the department and also from industry are meeting with American officials. I ask the hon. parliamentary secretary, in these discussions with the U.S. department, is the government also working with the government of British Columbia to help move them toward a more market driven price regime for their raw materials?

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    Mr. Pat O'Brien (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, at this time Canadians are very much united in grief with the United States and are determined to help bring the criminals of the recent terrible atrocity to justice. In the midst of that kind of outpouring of unity with our American friends, neighbours and relatives, we do realistically find ourselves with some bilateral problems that have to be addressed.

    My hon. colleague, the member for Cumberland--Colchester, has been very determined in highlighting these questions and raising these concerns.

    Canada is acting on several fronts to try and resolve this unfortunate dispute. As he noted, it rears its ugly head every five years and Canada has to reprove its case. As you know, Mr. Speaker, since you represent a riding with tremendous lumber interests, we reprove the fact that we do not subsidize our softwood lumber, that in fact everything on our side is being done above board.

    We call upon our American friends and neighbours to respect the desire for free trade in softwood lumber.

    We are acting on several fronts, at the WTO, at NAFTA. As my colleague has mentioned, discussions are going on in Toronto today and over the next couple of days between Canadian and American officials to try and find the root causes of this problem, to find a solution outside litigation. We hope that will be the case.

    As my colleague knows, the Prime Minister has personally raised this issue with President Bush. Just before the atrocity in Washington, the Minister for International Trade was there to speak personally with Mr. Zoellick and Mr. Evans. We will continue to move in every possible way to try and resolve this issue as amicably and as quickly as we can.

  -(1900)  

[Translation]

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    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): The motion to adjourn the House is now deemed to have been adopted. Accordingly, this House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 2.00 p.m., pursuant to Standing Order 24(1).

    (The House adjourned at 7.02 p.m.)