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Crucial Fact

  • His favourite word was lot.

Last in Parliament October 2015, as Conservative MP for West Nova (Nova Scotia)

Won his last election, in 2011, with 47% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Veterans Affairs March 19th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, that is a good question and certainly a matter that continues to be under review. As the member would be aware, in the budget this year there is a big effort to extend benefits toward new veterans, the young veterans that are coming on stream as the old veterans pass away. There have been adjustments to many of the programs and certainly they will continue. That certainly is a matter that is of concern to us as well.

Firearms Registry March 19th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to report today that the Minister of Public Safety announced further action towards effective gun control.

This Conservative government intends to re-extend the current amnesty that helps firearm owners comply with the law. Our government believes that gun control should target criminals, not law-abiding citizens. It should promote safety on our streets, not frustrate hunters in the bush.

We know that the criminalization of honest, responsible gun owners does not serve the public interest. We also know that criminals do not register their guns and that illegal handguns are the primary problem.

Our Conservative government remains committed to fighting crime and protecting Canadians so that our communities are safe places in which to live and raise families.

The long gun registry is not cracking down on crime like the Liberals promised it would. It unfairly targets hard-working farmers and hunters, not criminals.

It is time to put an end to this billion dollar Liberal boondoggle once and for all.

Kraft Hockeyville 2010 March 17th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the village of Lawrencetown, Nova Scotia for making it into the top 12 communities in the running for Kraft Hockeyville 2010. I would point out that it is a very difficult job to do this when St. Patrick is being so well represented by the green jackets down there.

A local organizing committee has put together an excellent bid for Lawrencetown, demonstrating its enthusiasm and love for the good old hockey game. This national competition generates great interest in our beloved game right across the country. It brings local communities together and creates a great deal of spirit and excitement.

I urge all Nova Scotians to show their strong hockey pride by supporting Lawrencetown, the only community left in the running in Nova Scotia. I ask everyone to please take the time to vote for Lawrencetown through CBC Sports online, by phone or text.

I really want to wish all communities well but I look forward to Lawrencetown becoming Hockeyville 2010.

Disposition of an Act to amend the Excise Tax Act December 7th, 2009

Mr. Speaker, I am just wondering if the member, in doing his extensive research on this important topic, found out whether the NDP had contacted any of the provinces in Atlantic Canada that implemented this measure several years ago to find out how they have made out. As a matter of fact, I think the new NDP Government of Nova Scotia seems to be quite comfortable with this arrangement. It serves people very well.

I wonder if he might comment on that for us.

Veterans Affairs November 6th, 2009

Mr. Speaker, as our minister has stated very clearly several times, the traditional review and respect we have for veterans does not change.

However, the reality today is that we have many more people entering the veterans stage from the modern wars and the modern responsibilities we have right around the world.

This government knows that we can certainly never do enough for the standard veterans. We have to make sure we do just as much, and even more, for the new veterans because they are protecting Canada and freedom right around the world.

Veterans Affairs November 6th, 2009

Mr. Speaker, certainly as part of the veterans affairs committee, the member does get that information first-hand, and probably he is well aware that the government is working hard on reinstating so many programs that were devastated by the former Liberal government.

Certainly the charter is an important initiative that we are picking up on. However, as all members sitting over there would know, it is going to take a long time to reinstate those very important programs.

We all know we can never do enough for our veterans in Canada.

Poppy Campaign October 26th, 2009

Mr. Speaker, this Friday, the Royal Canadian Legion will launch its annual Poppy Campaign, making available millions of the flowers of remembrance to support the poppy fund.

The poppy has become the most recognized symbol of remembrance in Canada. We wear it to remember those who have served and sacrificed so that future generations might know peace and freedom.

I want to take this opportunity to remind Canadians about the extent of the support that the poppy fund provides. The basic purpose of the fund is to offer emergency assistance to veterans and their families, including food, shelter and medical attention, but the fund reaches beyond this. It provides community medical equipment, such as defibrillator units, support for day care centres, student bursaries, meals-on-wheels programs and even disaster relief.

I encourage all Canadians, young and old, to make a donation and wear a poppy with pride. Lest we forget.

October 6th, 2009

Mr. Speaker, my colleague and I have shared time in committee together and realize that what we are going to be facing next year as colleagues, both at the committee stage and certainly here in the House, is that more and more veterans are returning who need this care.

There is a long ways to go on this very important journey and we are very open to receiving advice and input that tells us how to do this better. It is never going to be perfect but veterans deserve every bit of care.

I want to say on that point that we look forward to the continued co-operation to find the right answers and to do the very best we can for these veterans that served our country so well.

October 6th, 2009

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for bringing this important matter forward.

As the Minister of Veterans Affairs has said, we only serve in this chamber because our veterans have served our great country. It is because of them that we live in a free and peaceful democratic nation. They have been willing to sacrifice everything for our way of life and we must be there for them in the same way, 100% of the time, without hesitation.

Let me be clear. Even one homeless veteran is one too many. That is why our government, through Veterans Affairs Canada, has a wide range of services and benefits to help these brave individuals make a successful transition to civilian life. We do not want a single veteran left behind and so we work with Canadian Forces members early in their release process to help identify those who may be at risk of homelessness.

If our veterans have physical or psychological injuries, we have a variety of programs to help them restore their health, as well as their ability to function in their home, community and, where possible, the workplace. No two veterans have the same experience or the same approach to wellness. Medical and psychological care, vocational rehabilitation, financial support and health benefits are just a few of the tools at our disposal to help Canada's veterans.

We continue to work with veterans groups and community organizations to reach out to any veteran who is homeless. During the last number of months we have contacted more than 109 homeless shelters and agencies that help the homeless. Veterans who are homeless or at risk of becoming so can be hard to locate and that is why we have partnered with local groups to set up a six-month pilot storefront operation in Vancouver to reach out to these individuals.

We also encourage organizations and others to refer potential clients to Veterans Affairs by calling our toll free numbers. Those numbers are: 1-866-522-2122 in English and 1-866-522-2022 in French.

When we become aware of a homeless veteran, we help the veteran find support from the kinds of programs I mentioned earlier or through other available community resources. We are committed to helping our veterans and current soldiers overcome psychological injuries like post-traumatic stress disorder, addictions and anxiety disorders.

We have nine specialized clinics across the country where veterans who suffer from operational stress injuries, or OSIs, can be treated in a supportive environment. We also have a residential clinic at Ste. Anne's Hospital, a place where veterans can live for up to eight weeks to concentrate full-time on their treatment.

There is also a peer program called operational stress injury social support, which enlists the help of counsellors who have recovered from operational stress. Having been there themselves, these counsellors offer vital support to those who need it. They reach out to help veterans and their families deal with the serious problems they have. The success of this program is a result of Veterans Affairs Canada and the defence department working together.

The government has made a commitment to meet the needs of Canada's veterans today and, therefore, the creation of the Veterans Ombudsman and the Veterans Bill of Rights are proof of this. We will continue to do our very best for our country's truest heroes.

HMCS Kootenay October 2nd, 2009

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to pay tribute to the former members of Her Majesty's Canadian Ship Kootenay.

On October 23, 1969, during a routine NATO naval exercise about 200 miles west of Plymouth, England, a disastrous explosion ripped through the interior of the HMCS Kootenay. Ultimately, nine crew members were killed and over 40 were wounded.

Along with family, friends and several members of the Canadian navy, 36 former Kootenay crewmen are currently making a pilgrimage to Plymouth, England to pay homage to their fallen comrades on the 40th anniversary of the worst peacetime accident in the history of the Canadian navy.

Kootenay's motto is “We are as one”, and I believe that Canadian people stand as one to remember the sacrifice and heroism that took place aboard that ship in 1969.