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Ontario Hansard - 17-April2012

MEMBERS' STATEMENTS

LINCOLN ALEXANDER


Mrs. Jane McKenna: In January, I had the pleasure and good fortune of being one of about 100 people at a Burlington party celebrating the 90th birthday of the Honourable Lincoln M. Alexander, lovingly known to most as Linc.

Linc was, of course, Canada's first black MP, elected in 1968 as a Progressive Conservative to represent the riding of Hamilton West; the first black federal cabinet minister, as Minister of Labour in the Clark government; and Ontario's Lieutenant Governor from 1985 to 1991.

At that party, Linc was an inspiring presence, as always. Two months later, we were all given pause by news that Linc had been recuperating at Hamilton General Hospital after undergoing an operation to repair a ruptured aneurysm in his abdomen. This weekend, we learned that Linc has now left intensive care, and his recovery is going so well that he could be released from Hamilton General next week. This is, to say the least, tremendous news.

Linc, his wife, Marni Beal-Alexander, and his family hope that he will recover completely enough to be able to greet the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall when they visit Ontario next month as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations. It would certainly be most fitting.

On behalf of the Ontario PC caucus, I would like to add to the chorus of support and extend our heartfelt wishes to Linc for a sound and speedy recovery.

GENDER IDENTITY


Ms. Cheri DiNovo: The Trans Lobby Group members are thrilled-and Susan Gapka's here to share that with us-that the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal has ruled that the surgical requirement for a change in the record of birth on legal documents is discriminatory towards trans people. A decision just released, XY vs. the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services, confirmed what trans people have been saying all along-and I'm going to quote Susan Gapka. She says, "Requiring sexual reassignment surgery ... is differential treatment based upon a personal characteristic; that is, that trans people are treated differently and face harassment and discrimination when their legal documents do not match how they present in their everyday lives." Gapka, chair of the Trans Lobby Group, added, "Now we can move forward with remedy which will provide social inclusion for many trans people...."

I might say that none of this would have been necessary if we had gender identity and gender expression in the Ontario Human Rights Code-Toby's Law, tabled for the fourth time, and we hope it will be discussed in second reading debate on May 10. So on that day, hopefully we will have leapt over the one remaining hurdle in the province of Ontario to true trans inclusion and the end of any discrimination against our trans brothers and sisters.

Congratulations to them all, and here's hoping we move forward.

ITALIAN CAMPAIGN


Mr. Mario Sergio: This past February marked the 67th anniversary of the end of Canada's participation in the Italian campaign, one of the longest battles of World War II. Our Canadian soldiers played a vital role in the 20-month-long campaign, which led to the liberation of Italy.

The Italian campaign began on the morning of July 10, 1943, when Canadian and British troops landed on the southern tip of Sicily. After four weeks of battling the Germans, Canadian soldiers crossed the Strait of Messina, landed in Calabria, Italy's mainland, and engaged the Germans in fierce battles.

Our Canadian soldiers fought in Italy from July 10, 1943, until February 25, 1945. More than 93,000 Canadians fought on the front lines of the Italian campaign, with nearly 6,000 Canadians ultimately sacrificing their own lives to protect our values, our freedom and our peace. The soldiers of the Italian campaign were among the more than one million Canadians who served during World War II.

Speaker, most Canadian soldiers who died in the Italian campaign are buried in 18 Commonwealth cemeteries throughout Italy and commemorated on the Cassino memorial. We honour the selfless commitment of all Canadians who gave their lives in service to Canada. We honour every war veteran who remains with us today and honour and support those who come after them. The loyalty and sacrifice of Canadian soldiers continues to remind us of what it means to be Canadian.

KILLALOE PUBLIC SCHOOL


Mr. John Yakabuski: During constituency week, I had the pleasure of visiting Killaloe Public School, which is one of 10 finalists in a contest sponsored by Majesta Paper Products called the Majesta "Trees of Knowledge" competition.

Killaloe is a lovely village in my riding of Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke, only 13 miles from my home, which has always exhibited tremendous community spirit. The fact that KPS, with only about 110 students, has made it this far in a national competition is a testament to that community spirit.

In making their submission, Killaloe Public School had to design an outdoor learning space that would help educate their students and the public to the importance of working in concert with nature and understanding the benefits of a healthy natural environment.

I want to thank Principal Krista Recroskie and Lyndsey Mask, a volunteer, for inviting me to their school to learn more about their project. I had the opportunity to view a very well-done video and review the application, which was meticulously prepared. Incidentally, the video was produced by the students themselves and was most enjoyable.

The contest will be determined by a cross-Canada vote between now and May 11. If successful, Killaloe will receive $20,000 towards the building of their customized outdoor classroom. Between now and then, everyone eligible can vote once a day for the school of their choice. I'll be encouraging friends and family to vote for the Killaloe Public School's submission and would further encourage all members of this Legislature to do the same. They can do so by going to www.majesta.com and following the prompts. Let's all get together and vote for Killaloe and bring another Canadian champion to rural Ontario.

TRAFFIC ACCIDENT


Mr. Reza Moridi: I rise here today to recognize the extraordinary courage of two fellow citizens and their heroic efforts during a terrible accident in my riding of Richmond Hill.

On March 27, as flames began to engulf a vehicle that had struck a brick stanchion, two heroic residents, Andrea Belviso and Leslie Bonyhadi, came to the rescue of a stranger without a moment of hesitation.

Ms. Belviso approached the accident with her four-year-old son in the car. Parking her vehicle at a safe distance, she rushed to the scene while dialling 911. At that point, Mr. Bonyhadi arrived on the scene, and together, the duo decided to act before it might have been too late. Mr. Bonyhadi describes how they were able to support each other, braving the flames and smoke to reach the car and rescue the unconscious driver.

Due to the astonishing courage and fortitude of two ordinary citizens, one life was saved. They were able to summon the courage to run to this horrific scene and try their best to save the victim's life.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this time to acknowledge the courageous efforts of Ms. Belviso and Mr. Bonyhadi as they willingly placed their own lives at risk in an effort to save a stranger's life.

JOHN BRADLEY


Mr. Rick Nicholls: It's my great pleasure to rise today to recognize one of Chatham-Kent's most accomplished families, the family of Mr. John Bradley.

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John Bradley came to Chatham from Toledo, Ohio, and established Bradley Farms in 1912. The ensuing decades saw the founding of the Bradley Marshes Hunting Lodge, the building of Chatham's first strip mall, residential projects, including the area's first high-rise towers, and perhaps their most lasting legacy, a commitment to drawing tourism to Chatham-Kent.

With the establishment of the world-famous Wheels Inn in 1972, the Bradleys succeeded in bringing tourism business to an undiscovered gem of a town. The Wheels featured an indoor atrium and an amusement park, to the delight of families and their children.

John Bradley was also a generous spirit who founded the Chatham Kent Community Foundation to support local priorities.

I also want to recognize his son, Dean Bradley, and his family for their hard work in keeping John's legacy alive.

Now, to honour the contributions of the Bradley family in Chatham, it's only fitting that the new Chatham convention centre be named the John D. Bradley Convention Centre. Already operational and with an expected grand opening this spring, the centre will stand at the same site where the Wheels Inn once stood.

I wish the family the greatest success in continuing to stand for the best Chatham has to offer.

ANTI-TOBACCO LEGISLATION


Mme France Gélinas: Speaker, today I want to remind my colleagues of a bill that we-you and I-introduced in 2008. The bill banned the sale of single-sale flavoured cigarillos.

Although this bill passed, by the time it was enacted, the tobacco companies had found loopholes. They already had so-called new products, but they were not really new, Mr. Speaker. It was the exact same products as before: same flavour, same smell, same packaging, same price, same marketing; they just made them a little bit bigger so that they would circumvent the act. The tobacco industry recognizes a money-maker when they see one and they were not about to let the Legislative Assembly stand between them and billions of dollars of profit.

So today I will be introducing a new bill. This bill will be very simple: Ban all flavoured tobacco products in Ontario. Whether you smoke it, chew it, spit it, snuff it, it doesn't matter; if it is flavoured and it has tobacco, it won't be allowed in Ontario. Plus, we will ban new tobacco products from entering Ontario. There are a number of new products being test-marketed right now in the US; some of them are already for sale. You know about those little Tic Tacs, the little mints? They're now made out of nicotine. Same thing with the melt-same thing with the lozenges.

A very simple bill: Ban flavoured tobacco and ban new products. I hope everybody will support it.

ALANNA BRAY-LOUGHEED


Mr. Kevin Daniel Flynn: Burloak Canoe Club's winning tradition has made it a world leader in developing the best athletes at the local, the national and the Olympic levels. Cain, Oldershaw and Van Koeverden are just a few of the names that members may recognize. So it's a pleasure to rise in the Legislature this afternoon to recognize a young paddler from Oakville who is beginning to amass a growing list of accomplishments at the highest level of national and international competition.

Alanna Bray-Lougheed is a Quest for Gold recipient. She trains out of the Burloak Canoe Club, she's the winner of the K-1 200-metre event at the junior world championships last year, and she'll be representing Canada this weekend in Brazil. Alanna is part of a team of 10 athletes competing at the 2012 Pan American Canoe Sprint Championships in Rio de Janeiro. She was selected for the team based on her quick trial results at a competition in Lake Pickett, Florida, just a few weeks ago. Alanna is going to be competing in the K-1 race on the same course that's going to be used for the Brazil Summer Olympics in 2016.

On behalf of the House, I want to congratulate Alanna for her efforts and wish her well and the entire team good luck and best wishes of this House as they compete in Rio this weekend, representing all proud Canadians.

GORD RENWICK


Mr. Rob Leone: I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Cambridge native Gord Renwick, who was selected as a recipient of the Order of Hockey in Canada. The Order of Hockey in Canada recognizes individuals who have played prominent roles in developing and growing the game in Canada. Mr. Renwick is being inducted this year alongside Jean Beliveau, Cassie Campbell-Pascall, Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky.

Mr. Renwick not only was one of the original builders of the Galt Hornets senior hockey organization in my riding but was also president of the Hornets during which time the Hornets won two Allan Cups. Mr. Renwick was also instrumental in establishing the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association, the CAHA-now Hockey Canada-and the International Ice Hockey Federation. He also served as president of the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association and as a board member and vice-president of the IIHF.

This honour is well-deserved and further illustrates the deep roots that the game of hockey has in the communities of Cambridge and North Dumphries. I'd like to congratulate Mr. Renwick on his award.

CORRECTION OF RECORD


Ms. Cheri DiNovo: On a point of order, Mr. Speaker: I just wanted to correct the record. Earlier I said the Ontario Supreme Court. I meant the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. Thank you.

The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Thank you. That is a point of order, and all members are allowed to correct their own record.

NOTICE OF DISSATISFACTION


The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Pursuant to standing order 38(a), the member for Nepean-Carleton has given notice of her dissatisfaction with the answer to her question given by the Minister of Education concerning international travel for school boards. This matter will be debated tomorrow at 6 p.m.

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