Just Say “No”

House of Commons Debates
Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Mr. Michael Ignatieff (Etobicoke—Lakeshore, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister well knows that this side of the House did its duty last night.


Since the Chalk River reactor will now be restarted, can the Minister of Health guarantee that Canadian patients will be the first to benefit from the isotopes produced, before the international markets are supplied?


Would the minister guarantee that worried Canadians will not be waiting in line for isotopes while other foreign contracts for AECL are fulfilled?

Hon. Tony Clement (Minister of Health and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, as I said last night, each hospital and each clinic has a contract that is sometimes with Nordion, AECL or with another supplier. Those contracts would be honoured.

At this time in the House, I want to give our thanks to the medical oncologists and the nuclear medicine specialists who have worked day and night across this country to ensure this particular situation did not create a medical crisis. I think they deserve all of our applause for doing so.
If the answer is “no” just say so. Don’t try to confuse everyone with bafflegab just because you know the Canadian public will not be happy with your answer that translates to “despite the fact that we are putting Canadian lives at risk we are not going to give Canadians priority access to the isotopes produced while this reactor operates in an unsafe manner unapproved by the nuclear safety regulator”.

PS : I wonder how much this had to do with the government’s decision

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