Mr. Speaker, as the World Health Assembly meetings concluded last week, I rise to call for Taiwan to be included once again in all World Health Organization events moving forward. I believe that the enjoyment of good health is a universal right of every human being, which is why I successfully lobbied for Taiwan's inclusion in WHO events during my term as minister of health.
Epidemics know no borders. Taiwan's absence from the WHO creates a significant gap in global co-operation on public health safety and disease prevention. Taiwan hosts 60,000 Canadians on its soil, so any outbreak of infectious diseases, such as SARS in 2003, would affect Taiwanese as well as Canadians living in the country.
It is morally wrong for any country or organization to ignore the health and well-being of the 23 million Taiwanese people and prevent them from sharing health information. Therefore, I call upon the Minister of Health to end her silence and to start to advocate for the inclusion of Taiwan in the World Health Assembly.