March 14, 2016

While media and the government spent most of the last week preoccupied with the Prime Minister’s most recent vanity tour, my colleagues and I in the Conservative Caucus remained focused on what is important to you – jobs, the economy and public safety.

Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration

Multiple environmental groups, including Nature Canada, have led a campaign calling on Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay to reinstitute the Shelter Belt Program and suspend the transfer of 30 remaining community pastures until an additional environmental assessment can be done. The decision to wind down these programs was made while our Conservative Party was in government.

Farm families are the heart of our rural communities and form the backbone of this great country. There are none more committed to the quality of their food, to farm safety and environmental sustainability than farm families. Our Party has always recognized that we must work with our provincial counterparts to ensure the viability of our agricultural sector in the 21st century. While we were in government we reduced red tape and wound down programs that had met their goals, which lowered taxes for small businesses and communities. Under the PFRA program, we transferred the management of pasture land from the federal government to the provincial governments. This was land that was already owned by the provinces. Unlike the Liberals, who completely ignored our farm families in the Speech from the Throne and would make life more difficult for farmers by imposing a risky carbon tax scheme, our Conservative Party has always put farm families first and we will continue to do so.

Truth in Sentencing Act Being Ignored

Last week it was reported that judges in Ontario are ignoring the Truth in Sentencing Act and giving extra credit for time served to convicted offenders.

Our Party has always stood up for victims and for the safety and security of Canadians. That is why we passed over 30 Justice and Public Safety bills in our time in office. The Truth in Sentencing Act put an end to the practice of granting convicted criminals 2 for 1 and sometimes 3 for 1 credit for time served off their sentences. We are disappointed that the Liberal government is putting the rights of offenders ahead of the rights of victims. Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould said the Liberals will ensure “that the accused’s rights are respected.” This shows a fundamental misunderstanding of the issue. The Truth in Sentencing Act does not deal with those who are only accused of crime. It affects those who have been convicted of crime. We call on the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada to put the rights of victims first and ensure that the provinces respect Canada’s Criminal Code.

Mobile Office Update

The next Mobile Office will be in Benalto at the Leisure Centre on Wednesday March 16th and then in Didsbury on April 6. Office will run from 10-2 both days. While my staff has been working hard on the mobile office on my behalf, I am happy that I will be able to take part in Benalto from 12-1 on March 16th. If you are in the area, please feel free to stop in and bring any questions or concerns.

Sincerely your Member of Parliament,

Earl Dreeshen