June 08, 2016

I spent the past weekend in the presence of some of Central Alberta’s best and brightest throughout Red Deer – Mountain View. Both Red Deer College and Olds College held their convocations this weekend and I was deeply inspired by meeting some of the students and hearing of their ambitious plans for their futures.

In Ottawa, discussions continued to focus on two areas, Physician Assisted Dying and the upcoming Electoral Reform.

Physician Assisted Dying

Last week, the House of Commons passed Bill C-14, regarding Physician Assisted Dying, at third reading. I continued to have concerns about the lack of protection for conscious rights, the lack of support for palliative care and the potential for expansion to include minors and people with mental health problems – so I voted against it.

As of this writing, the Bill is before the Senate, which can either approve it as is or make amendments and return it to the House of Commons. Now that the Supreme Court deadline has passed, we continue to try and convince the Liberal government to slow down and actually get this right.

Electoral Reform

On June 6th, the Liberals and NDP struck a back room deal to change the makeup of the committee tasked to study electoral reform in Canada.

My colleagues and I in the Conservative Party insist that Canadians must have the final say, in a national referendum, on any proposed changes to how Canadians elect their MPs. A committee of parliamentarians, no matter the makeup, is not, and never will be, a substitute for all Canadians having their voices heard directly in a referendum.

Our best examples of voting system consultations in Canada—the citizens’ assemblies of British Columbia and Ontario, and the in-depth studies in Prince Edward Island—all concluded with a referendum. That’s the standard of behaviour that Canadians now expect.

It is clear from the government’s actions that the fix is in: they have a specific outcome in mind, one that they will ensure emerges from this process, and one that will serve only the interests of the Liberal Party. There can be no other conclusion based on this government’s words and deeds.

Mobile Office Update

The next mobile office will be on June 15th at the Penhold Library and July 6th at the Bowden Municipal Office. Both sessions will be open from 10-2. Please feel free to bring any questions, comments or concerns forward.

Sincerely your Member of Parliament,

Earl Dreeshen