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Dr. Ruby Dhalla- MP, Brampton, Ontario


A Message from Ruby... Feb. 12, 2008
Dr. Ruby Dhalla

In this time of growing economic crisis many families are struggling to make ends meet; seniors are having to make the choice between filling up their fridge, filling their gas tanks or filling the medicine cabinet. Over the past few months I have been meeting with many constituents and Canadians that have lost their jobs because their companies have closed their doors. In a community like Brampton in which the manufacturing and auto sector employ thousands of people there has been a huge impact on the daily lives of people. Some of the single mothers I meet wonder how they will put food on the table, the fathers worry about next month’s mortgage payment, and families are concerned about their savings being washed away. Since Parliament opened I have been speaking in Parliament to ensure there is action taken by the Government for the people that are struggling. People are tired of political games, partisanship, and rhetoric. They want leadership, action and hope. Our new leader, Michael Ignatieff, and our liberal team are focused on ensuring the Government delivers on its promises and provides the help that Canadians need. I look forward to being a strong voice for the constituents of Brampton Springdale and those families, men and women that are struggling.

In addition to the budget discussions in Parliament, an emergency debate was also held in Parliament about the growing humanitarian crisis in Sri Lanka in which innocent children, women and men are losing their lives. Unfortunately the Conservative Government remained silent on the issue until persistent pressure from opposition MP`s. As a nation, Canada has always been a strong promoter of peace and champion of human rights. As Canadians we have always been respected leaders on the world stage we must ensure we find our voice once again and bring people hope.

I am sending you this E-News to keep in touch, and to give you a glimpse of the activities in the past month! Hope you enjoy reading it. Lastly I join many of you in congratulating President Obama on his great victory that gives hope of the possibilities that exist when we work hard and go after our dreams!

Speech in Parliament about the Budget...

"Many of the other G8 countries acted. They acted on behalf of their citizens and on behalf of their nations to provide stimulus packages. What did we have in Canada? We had the Prime Minister of the day denying there was an economic recession. We had the Prime Minister and the Conservative government denying there was the possibility of a growing crisis. We had thousands of people losing their jobs, having the door shut in their faces. We had seniors struggling to make ends meet, to pay their energy bills and their mortgage payments. They received absolutely no hope from the government.

The government told us there would be surpluses. A few months later, when the budget came out the other day, we all learned Canadians would be inheriting an $84 billion deficit.

Then the government promised a stimulus to help create jobs with infrastructure spending. One only had to read the fine print. ..In order to access the infrastructure spending provided in the budget they must come up with the money. The problem the cities don’t have it! This is why our leader and my Liberal colleagues have put the Prime Minister and the government on probation to ensure that there is accountability, to ensure the funds that have been promised do not just look great as words on paper but are delivered to the municipalities and to the people who so desperately need them. Canadians across the country and constituents like mine in Brampton are looking to government. They are looking to all parliamentarians, regardless of their political stripe, to put aside their partisanship. They are looking to us for hope.

I think by working together in a spirit of cooperation, in a spirit of collaboration, we have an opportunity to give those people, who are struggling to make ends meet, the hope that they so desperately need for a brighter future and a better tomorrow.

Ruby named as Critic for Multiculturalism and Youth in Michael Ignatieff`s Shadow Cabinet

Last month, Liberal Opposition Leader Michael Ignatieff announced the new line up of critics for his shadow cabinet with Dr. Ruby Dhalla being appointed as Critic for Multiculturalism and Youth. Since being elected, Dr. Dhalla has been a strong champion and advocate of ensuring the voices of ethnic communities are heard. "Canada is a symbol of hope for nations throughout the world. As the daughter of immigrant parents I have a seen first hand the sacrifices and courage of new Canadians in an effort to have their voices heard. I look forward to ensuring issues such as foreign credential recognition, improved access to Government services and efficiency in our immigration system are brought to the forefront. The contributions of immigrants are a cornerstone of our nation's success," said Dr. Dhalla.

As one of Canada's youngest female Members of Parliament, Dr. Dhalla recognizes her responsibility in also reaching out to young Canadians and promoting and encouraging youth participation in the political process. In parliament Dr. Dhalla has been a strong voice on behalf of youth to ensure they have the necessary resources they need to succeed. In April 2008, Dr. Dhalla launched the Brampton-Springdale Youth Advisory Council to empower youth to actively participate in designing and developing solutions for issues that confront them. This council provides students a platform to speak openly and directly with educators, elected officials and community members to address youth related violence in schools.

As the only Member of Parliament from the Region of Peel in Mr. Ignatieff's shadow cabinet Dr. Dhalla also looks forward to being a strong representative for the needs of Peel residents.

Black History Month

This year marks the 13th anniversary of Black History month in Canada. To honour the achievements and remember the injustices done to African-Canadians Liberal Opposition Critic for Multiculturalism, Dr. Ruby Dhalla joined members of her caucus in marking this momentous occasion.

"Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today in recognition of the 13th anniversary of Black History Month. Let us take time to celebrate the achievements and contributions of African-Canadians and remember the journey of the past" said Dhalla in her address in the House of Commons.

"There was a time in the seventeenth century when a young African boy, Olivier Le Jeune, was brought over as a slave, a time in Canada when slavery existed, where there was white supremacy and black subordination. We fast forward to today and the Black community in my own riding of Brampton comprises the third largest visible minority community. We have seen first-hand the Black community achieve great success with their faith, perseverance and determination."

Dhalla also noted the importance of this year's Black History month celebration with the election of President Barack Obama.

"As the world celebrates the first African-American president, we here in Canada also have our own success stories with our Governor General, the Right Hon. Michaëlle Jean; the first black member of Parliament, the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, Lincoln Alexander; and trailblazers such as the former member of Parliament and minister, the Hon. Jean Augustine, who introduced the motion to recognize Black History Month."

"We as a nation are enriched by the contributions of the Black community, their hard work and perseverance. I look forward to celebrating with all Canadians the success stories of past African Canadians and the even greater successes that are to come as the African-Canadian has played a vital role in building the social fabric of Canada and is to be commended," said Dr. Dhalla.


Dr. Dhalla visits India to speak at a conference

Last month Dr. Dhalla had the honour of speaking at a conference for the global diaspora of Indians in Chennai, India. Dr Dhalla was invited to speak at the opening session with India’s Minister of External Affairs Hon. Pranab Mukerjee. Dr. Dhalla spoke about the role of India in the global arena, the importance of expanding the trade and cultural relationship between Canada and India and the role of youth and women in changing India`s future. During her visit to India, Dr. Dhalla also met with officials at the Canadian High Commission to discuss challenges her constituents encounter in the area of immigration. In addition Dr. Dhalla met with various Ministers and officials in the Prime Minister’s Office to discuss issues of bilateral importance. While in India, Dr. Dhalla was also honoured by the World Punjabi Organization for her achievements and contributions in advancing the role of women and youth in politics.





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