Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to present a petition in the House today in support of the volunteer firefighters who we all know are critical to protecting our lives and the fire safety of small communities across the nation in ridings like mine, Simcoe—Grey.
On average we know that our volunteer firefighters give over 443 hours of service, equivalent to 60 work days a year. Small communities are under severe financial stress and having paid firefighters is not an option.
I was pleased to see that this was included in the budget. It is unfortunate that the opposition parties are not supporting it and that we will be going to the polls, because I know that the average Canadian citizen would like to see support for our volunteer firefighters.