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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

November 29th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, our government has the needs of our veterans at heart.

The Minister of Veterans Affairs has made the issue surrounding the lump sum payment one of his priorities. That is why legislation was recently tabled by the minister to address any issues around this award.

If the bill is passed, veterans who receive a disability award will have the choice between annual payments spread out over the number of years of their choice with interest; part of the award as a lump sum and the rest as annual payments over the number of years of their choice with interest; or a single lump sum payment. This is what we heard often in the veterans affairs committee, that the young vets wanted these changes available to them.

Furthermore, at any time, veterans who so choose may change their minds and receive the remaining amount as a lump sum payment.

I would like to remind the member opposite that the lump sum payment is just one piece of the new veterans charter. I remind her of this today because the media and others seem to think there is only one financial benefit. That is simply not the case. The lump sum disability is not meant to replace salary, and it is not meant to be a recurring monthly income. Instead it recognizes and compensates Canadian Forces members and veterans for the pain and suffering, functional loss and the effects of permanent impairment of service-related disability. There is a whole range of services and other financial supports available that help our veterans get back into civilian life.

Eligible veterans also receive a monthly earnings loss benefit, up to 75% of their pre-release salary, while they are in rehabilitation. The legislation tabled by the minister increases the earnings loss benefit to ensure veterans in need have an adequate monthly income.

The most severely injured veterans, who cannot return to work, will also benefit from the widened eligibility for the permanent impairment allowance, which is currently paid in the amount of $536 to $1,609, and the additional $1,000 per month that has been recently announced by the minister.

Finally, veterans are also offered a full range of benefits and services, including practical help finding a job, psychological and physical rehabilitation and health care coverage.

As recent announcements indicate, the new veterans charter can and will be modified to ensure the needs of our Canadian Forces members, our veterans and their families are met. It is a living document, and we will continue to make improvements in the future.

The new veterans charter provides the supports necessary for veterans and their families to return to the best life possible. The Government of Canada continues to work on all avenues to provide the best care for our veterans and their families.

At the end of the day, our brave men and women in uniform deserve our respect.

Our government is here for veterans and here for Canada.

Veterans Affairs November 26th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, I will take it as a compliment that this is the only government that decided to move on this very important file. For many years these people were left out there with no hope, no answer and no program.

Unfortunately, it did come late and many of the files were not available to help out, but we are fully committed to helping every victim of Agent Orange in any way we can because our veterans deserve that.

Veterans Affairs November 26th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, as the member is well aware, our government made a clear decision in 2007 to provide compensation for victims of Agent Orange.

Unlike the Liberals, we took decisive action to care for our veterans and over 3,000 people have received compensation to date.

The Minister of Veterans Affairs has directed the department that absolutely no veteran who is sick because of Agent Orange will be denied compensation due to an arbitrary deadline.

Veterans Affairs November 19th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, she is now off on a fantasy flight of some sort. I am not sure where that lack of logic comes from. I know the member does purport to care for veterans. However, one time in a response, she should recognize what many have, and that is the terrific methods and changes that have taken place. At least once she should recognize that we are responding to the needs of veterans and share in that commitment to our veterans, which is so very important.

Flooding in Nova Scotia November 15th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, our thoughts are with the people of southwestern Nova Scotia as they deal with the aftermath of last week's severe flooding.

Unprecedented rains over several days have damaged bridges, roads and homes in several communities. Last week, along with local officials, I visited some of the affected areas and talked to residents impacted by the storm.

We are all relieved that the situation is beginning to improve throughout the area. There are a lot of repairs still under way and there is much more to be done.

I would like to commend Emergency Measures, the RCMP, volunteer firefighters, the Red Cross, and many others for providing support and services to residents in need in many communities.

As the Prime Minister said, we are in close contact with provincial authorities, and the Government of Canada stands ready to provide assistance once the province has completed an assessment of the damage.

The people of Nova Scotia have experienced severe weather before, and I am certain that by working together we will weather this storm as well.

Veterans Ombudsman November 5th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table, in both official languages, the 2009-10 annual report of the Office of the Veterans Ombudsman, entitled “For Veterans and Good Governance”.

Veterans Affairs November 5th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, we are well aware of the games the member for Sackville—Eastern Shore likes to play. The close shave he had recently reflects the fact that he has had many flip-flops in recent months. Probably that is indicative of the kind of character he is.

I am very proud that our minister is prepared to meet with all the veterans of Canada, because he cares.

Veterans Affairs November 5th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, the member is correct. The ombudsman's job is very careful. Later today we will have an announcement that will make it clear how important it is that we put in place a new individual in that position. We are very happy about that.

Also, later today I will be tabling a report from the ombudsman and that information is available to all members of the House.

Canadian Forces November 5th, 2010

Mr. Speaker, today is the start of Veterans' Week. As we remember those who have travelled far and wide to fight for Canadian values, we also honour those who have protected those same values on Canadian soil.

Canadian Forces members continuously put their country first, and their record is exemplary. They sustain our national security by keeping watch against terrorist attacks and guarding international borders to maintain domestic stability.

They save lives during search and rescue missions in the raging seas off our coasts and everywhere in between. Their dedication and training are invaluable when natural disasters strike, at home and abroad.

Just recently, more than 1,000 Canadian Forces members rebuilt roads, bridges and communities in Newfoundland and Labrador after the devastation of Hurricane Igor.

Our Canadian Forces members do this to uphold our long-standing commitment to peace and freedom, one of Canada's defining qualities in the eyes of the world.

This Veterans' Week, we honour their legacy. This Veterans' Week, we remember and we thank them.

The Learning Partnership November 3rd, 2010

Mr. Speaker, every year on the first Wednesday in November, thousands of grade nine students participate in The Learning Partnership's take our kids to work program. Now in its 16th year, this program sees students take part in a daylong job shadowing experience at businesses and organizations across Canada.

This year, The Learning Partnership, in conjunction with the Scotiabank group, ran the second annual ultimate dream job contest to coincide with the take our kids to work program. This national online photo contest gave students the chance to prepare for the future by exploring their career opportunities.

This year's grand prize winner is Melanie Renn from Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, who was chosen by over 10,000 voters. Melanie's dream job is to become an archaeologist. Her thirst for knowledge and fascination with solving puzzles gave her entry the winning edge. As part of her grand prize, Melanie is in Ottawa today to meet with the Prime Minister and the Speaker of the House.

I congratulate Melanie and hope she enjoys her day.