moved for leave to introduce Bill C-211, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (assaults against health care professionals and first responders).
He said: Mr. Speaker, I am truly honoured and humbled to be here today to introduce this bill.
In my mind, heroes do not wear capes. They wear shoulder flashes and badges that say nurse, RN, LPN, RPN, firefighter, paramedic, EMT or ambulance. They put their uniforms on every day knowing full well that they are going to experience human tragedy, and they are going to see sights and experience smells that may live with them for a lifetime.
When we call 911, we know that they will answer our call for help. They put their uniforms on every day to help us all. They fix our broken bones, they bandage our cuts, they restart our hearts and they hold our hands as we catch our last breath.
We should be doing everything we can to ensure that these altruistic individuals have the tools they require to do their jobs and to remain mentally healthy as well as physically healthy. We should be doing everything in our power to ensure that they never have to fear violence in their workplace.
Sadly, the rates of violence against our health care professionals and first responders are growing at a staggering rate. Today is about the nurse who is punched, kicked, spat at or thrown to the floor. Today is about the paramedic who is thrown down a flight of stairs, kicked and attacked while trying to save the life of a patient.
Today is about ensuring that we stand up for them because violence is not part of their job description.