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In-Your-Service

MP has free Canadian flags

While we mark National Indigenous History Month in June, we do so at a sombre time with the devastating news of the bodies of 215 children found in unmarked graves near a former residential school in Kamloops.

This is another reminder of the devastating legacy of residential schools, and I mourn alongside those who loved these children.

The Official Opposition has called on the government to take meaningful action on reconciliation, including implementing Calls to Action 71 to 76 from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) report by Canada Day.

In addition, we ask the government to pass bills implementing parts of the commission’s call to action such as Bill C-8, which is before this Parliament.

We need to fund investigations at all former residential schools where unmarked graves may exist, and we need to ensure that proper resources are allocated for communities to re-inter, commemorate, and honour any individuals discovered during these investigations.

In 2008, then prime minister Stephen Harper delivered an historic apology to former residential school students, their families, and communities, Canada’s Conservatives will continue to work to advance the work of the TRC.

With only a few more weeks of parliamentary work before the House of Commons rises for the summer, there is a lot of activity and I’ll touch on a couple of items.

Canadians were rightfully angered to hear that Julie Payette, the former Liberal-appointed governor general, would receive a generous pension and benefits for life after only a short term in office after being forced to resign in disgrace after a workplace review.

This generous pension for such a short term was something I heard a lot about from constituents in Kelowna-Lake Country, and I was more than happy to second a private member’s bill from my colleague, MP Marilyn Gladu, to stop this from happening again.

I also continue to hear concerns from many constituents on the government’s attempts to limit free speech through Bill C-10, which would make changes to the Broadcasting Act.

It has been suggested by experts that this bill could allow the CRTC to regulate what individuals can or cannot post and view online.

On June 4, the government attempted to shut down debate on C-10 by using a parliamentary procedure that hasn’t been seen in Parliament for decades.

Conservatives worked unapologetically to defend free speech and prevented this vote from occurring.
Conservative colleagues and I called for an emergency trade committee meeting to question the trade minister on the recent U.S. announcement of their intention to double tariffs on softwood lumber from Canada.

I questioned the minister on what actions she has taken and received nothing more than evasive responses. Our committee meeting received national news coverage.

Because our Canada-U.S. supply chains are so integrated, this could result in more uncertainty and less production in Canada, leading to even higher lumber prices here.

The last softwood lumber agreement was negotiated by the Conservative government and expired in 2015. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised in 2015 he would negotiate a new agreement within 100 days of forming government, which hasn’t happened.

Since then, there have been three U.S. administrations, and we’ve seen production and jobs go south.

With re-opening, we can look forward to more activities; however, major events are still on hold, such as our large Canada Day celebrations.

I am once again offering Kelowna-Lake Country residents a Canada flag on a first-come basis. The cut-off is June 20 — so be sure to reach out soon.

To request your Canada flag kit, please call (250) 470-5075, email [email protected], or visit us online at www.TracyGrayMP.ca.

If you need any assistance with federal programs or have any thoughts to share, please reach out any time.

Stay well.

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About the Author

Tracy Gray, MP for Kelowna-Lake Country, is the Official Opposition’s Shadow Minister for Export Promotion and International Trade.

She also serves on the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, and is a member of the National Caucus Committees Credit Union Caucus, Wine Caucus, and Aviation Caucus.

Gray, who has won the RBC Canadian Woman Entrepreneur of the year, and Kelowna Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Award, worked for 27 years in the B.C. beverage industry.

She founded and owned Discover Wines VQA Wine Stores, which included the No. 1 wine store in B.C. for 13 years. She has been involved in small businesses in different sectors — financing, importing, oil and gas services and a technology start-up — and is among the “100 New Woman Pioneers in B.C."

Gray was a Kelowna city councillor for the 2014 term, on the Passenger Transportation Board 2010-2012, and elected to the board of Prospera Credit Union for 10 years.

In addition, she served on the Okanagan Film Commission, Clubhouse Childcare Society, Kelowna Chamber of Commerce, Okanagan Regional Library as a Trustee and was chair of the Okanagan Basin Water Board.

She volunteers extensively in the community and welcomes connecting with residents.

She can be reached at 250-470-5075, and [email protected]



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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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