Mr. Speaker, in the discourse of Canada's political history, the roles played by our first nations, and the French and the British components regularly overshadow the important roles played by Canadians of other origins.
In fact, for over a century we viewed our country as bicultural. It was not until Liberal Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau that for the first time we formally acknowledged that Canada was in fact a multicultural nation. For this reason, it is important and proper that we acknowledge and pay tribute to those communities that helped to build Canada's foundations.
To underscore this point, this year marks the 140th anniversary of the election of the first Polish Canadian, Alexandre Édouard Kierzkowski, to Canada's first House of Commons in 1867. Kierzkowski was a Polish officer who came to Canada in 1842. In the year of Canada's Confederation, he was elected the Liberal member of Parliament for Saint-Hyacinthe.
For 140 years Polish Canadians have contributed in building our great multicultural nation and, as such, they should be considered one of Canada's founding peoples.