Today is Remembrance Day, where we take time to reflect on the sacrifices of Canada’s veterans. This year is made all the more important as it also marks the 100th anniversary of the adoption of the poppy as a symbol of commemoration by the The Great War Veterans Association (the precursor of The Royal Canadian Legion). Since then, it has become a powerful part of honouring and helping veterans and their families.To all those who lost loved ones while serving their country, I mourn with you and extend my gratitude. We are in debt to our veterans and their families for their sacrifices.
Earlier this morning I had the privilege and honour to pay tribute to our veterans on behalf of the Province of Ontario and lay a wreath at our Scarborough Cenotaph. Last year’s Remembrance Day was much different as we navigated the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and devastating outbreaks in long term care homes. However, this year we returned to gather together in commemoration and reflected on our shared history. Tragically, many veterans who were with us last year are not with us today. We must not forget them or their stories.
Today is also an important time to recommit our efforts to support veterans across this province. I hope you will join me in calling on the Government to provide concrete support to our veterans. The Ontario Government must stop the claw back of veterans’ benefits from ODSP & OW which hurts injured veterans who are forced to payback their benefits. Injured veterans deserve to have a roof over their head, food on their table, and have access to the mental health supports that they need.
Thank you to our local Legions - Branch 13 and Branch 73 for the beautiful events throughout the day and your continued service - everyday your work in our community helps veterans and their families.