Mr. Speaker, on Sunday, June 1, 2003, over 3,000 people participated in the festivities for Italy's national holiday “Festa della Republica” as well as for the first anniversary of the opening of the Leonardo Da Vinci Cultural & Community Centre in my riding of Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel.
The Consul General of Italy, COMITES of Montreal, the Leonardo Da Vinci Centre, and the Italian-Canadian Foundation hosted the day's events. Other dignitaries in attendance included the Speaker of the Senate, as well as senators, members of Parliament, members from Quebec's National Assembly, the Mayor of Montreal, and many city councillors and community representatives from across the island.
As my riding of Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel has the highest concentration of Italian-speaking Canadians, the location chosen could not have been any better. The riding continues to be one in which different cultural groups, traditions, and beliefs are valued and maintained.
I am proud to represent a riding that serves as a model for all others across the country. It is a place where people, no matter what their origins, can live together in friendship as a true representation of Canada's diversity.