Bob Zimmer, MP
Leading up to the delivery of the Speech from the Throne by Governor General David Johnston, I travelled to Budva, Montenegro as a Canadian representative for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Parliamentary Assembly’s 2013 Autumn Meeting.
During the three day conference, I had the opportunity to speak to the Assembly regarding countering terrorism and transnational threats in the OSCE area and respecting human rights. Within the speech, I reiterated Canada’s concerns with Islamic extremist terrorism, as well as highlighted Canada’s efforts to combat terrorism, including Canada’s Counter-Terrorism Capacity Building Program. Through this program, Canada provides training, equipment, and technical, legal and other security assistance to help other states prevent and respond to terrorist activity.
It was a productive conference, with other members of the Canadian delegation giving a Canadian point of view on such topics as the security effects of the economic/financial crisis and the integration of diverse societies.
With the delivery of the Speech from the Throne, the priorities for our Conservative Government have been laid out and a new session of Parliament has officially begun.
I am honoured to begin this new session having been appointed by the Prime Minister as BC/Yukon Caucus Chair. As BC/Yukon Caucus Chair, I will chair a weekly meeting of Conservative Members of Parliament and Senators from across the region to discuss the issues that matter most to the people of British Columbia and the Yukon. I will also chair the bi-annual BC/Yukon stakeholder meetings and report the work of the BC/Yukon Caucus to the Prime Minister and to national caucus.
I have also been appointed to the Standing Committee on Natural Resources and I am looking forward to continuing to consult with local stakeholders and providing a voice for Northeastern BC’s natural resource community in Ottawa.
With regards to the Speech from the Throne, our Conservative Government has put forward an agenda to help make sure hard-working Canadian families get ahead. We will build on our record of supporting the economy and G7-leading job creation, recently concluding negotiations on free trade with Europe and staying on track to balance the budget in 2015.
We will support families with measures to increase choice on cable television channels and cellphone roaming rates, and an end to ‘pay to pay’ charges for paper copies of bills.
We will continue to put victims first by introducing a comprehensive Victims Bill of Rights. We will also introduce legislation to combat cyberbullying, to help protect our children from a threat that can reach into their homes.
And our Conservative Government will put Canada first with measures to ensure the Canadian Armed Forces have the tools they need to protect Canadians and Canadian sovereignty.