moved for leave to introduce Bill C-226, An Act to provide for the issuance of the Memorial Cross as a memento of personal loss.
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my hon. colleague from Winnipeg for supporting and seconding the bill. I also want to thank Lieutenant Pat Jessop and Mr. Tom Waters very much for their support of the bill.
What the bill would do is that when a soldier, air force or a navy personnel, or someone within our armed forces, dies in the line of duty, we issue the Memorial Cross or the Silver Cross to the mother or to the wife of that soldier.
What happens if a woman is killed in the line of duty? Her husband and her father would not have received the Silver Cross because it is based strictly on the fact that a woman, either the wife or the mother, would receive it.
We believe that it is time to modernize this medal and also present it to husbands and fathers. We believe that they grieve equally. We believe it is time to modernize this.
I do remind the House that this is something that nobody wishes to receive. In the end a person would have had to have lost a child in the service of his or her country. I believe it would show honour, sacrifice and dignity to all members of the family if husbands and wives, fathers and mothers equally received the Silver Cross in honour of their loved one's sacrifice to our glorious country.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)