Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for Burnaby—New Westminster for his last Thursday question of 2014.
Before getting to the business of the House, I hope you will indulge me a couple of moments to thank everyone for their hard work this year. As I said yesterday at a press conference, Christmastime is an appropriate point in the year to reflect on the months which have just passed.
Let me extend my thanks to all of the members' staff for the hard work and tireless efforts they put in—around here and in our constituency offices—for the cause of democracy. Without their help, our work would simply not be possible.
Mr. Speaker, as you know well, the last few months have posed a number of unique challenges around the House of Commons, but our clerks at the table have managed their way through in a sound and confident manner, all the while being short-staffed no less. However, we are looking forward to having a full team again in 2015 once our Clerk of the House of Commons, Audrey O'Brien, takes her familiar place at the head of the table.
Of course it goes without saying that everyone else around here who makes our lives easier, our work better and maintains our peace of mind deserves our hearty thanks, as we just demonstrated to one group in particular, those who provide security services.
However, I would like to single out another group in particular. I would like to take the opportunity to thank one group that works hard, often with little in the way of thanks in this place, and that being the parliamentary pages. Being a page is an extraordinary and special experience. To be able to spend a year here at such a young time in life—though nowadays it seems some can get elected to spend a year here at such a young age—is indeed a rare and special thing. The pages have been able to enjoy a particularly interesting, fascinating and dramatic first several months here. When they return home, which for many will be the first time since they began here, to their families across the country to share stories over the holidays, I think they will have more than usual eager audiences to hear their experiences and learn about their insights. I do look forward to seeing them refreshed when we come back, as I do everyone else.
Finally, Mr. Speaker, I would be remiss if I neglected to thank you and your three fellow chair occupants, and my fellow House officers for all their work this year. I wish one and all the very best for the holidays. It is fair to say that we really do have a hard-working, productive and orderly House of Commons.
As for the formal part of this statement, we will resume debate this afternoon on Bill C-32, the victims bill of rights act, at report stage and then, if we get there, Bill C-44, the protection of Canada from terrorists act, also at report stage.
Tomorrow we will complete the third reading debate on Bill C-40, the Rouge national urban park act.
As for the business of the House for the week of January 26 when we return, I will let my counterparts know through the usual channels as the return of the House nears.
Finally, I would like to conclude by wishing everyone a happy Hanukkah, a merry Christmas and a happy new year.