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View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2019-05-07 15:12 [p.27485]
Mr. Speaker, it is my birthday.
[Members sang Happy Birthday]
Mr. Mark Warawa: Mr. Speaker, I was in the hospital recently for 15 days, and I had zero interest in politics, since I was in the hospital and possibly facing the end of my life. In just a few minutes here in Parliament, I am interested in politics again.
I am not running again; I announced that. However, I wanted to make a farewell speech. It is tradition in this House to be able to say goodbye and thank members of this House. I have surgery for colon cancer coming up on May 22, and my only opportunity to say goodbye is this week. I am here to give the House an update and thank members.
I was an election observer with a colleague, and I had to come back early because I was turning yellow. I was very jaundiced. I came back, went to the hospital after a few days, and doctors found that I had a pancreatic tumour. They then found that I had colon cancer, and that the pancreatic cancer, which is the same as what Steve Jobs had, had spread to my lungs. The prognosis from the doctors is not great. However, I have a strong faith in God; and the God, who created me can heal me.
I want to share a little about my life. Throughout my life, there have been some wonderful little God moments, nuggets and interventions of guidance.
People ask me why I became involved with politics in the first place. It started with a dream back in 1990. I had a dream that there was an upcoming municipal election and that I was elected. This was out of the blue; I had no interest in it.
Later that day, somebody came up to me and said that they had a dream about me. “Oh, really?” I asked. “What did you dream?” The person dreamed that I ran in the election and was elected. When those little nuggets happen, one has to listen. So often we get busy and do not. I put my name on the ballot and, surprise, I was elected. That was in 1990.
I served on the Abbotsford council with the wonderful, intelligent, good-looking member for Abbotsford. I served there for 14 years, and what an honour it was.
Then there was another God moment. I was with my beautiful wife, Diane, and we were going out for our anniversary. I said to her that one day, before I retired, I would love to get into managing or owning an auto body shop. I had just sold a business and everything, and she told me not to start a new business. I told her that I was just thinking out loud, because I loved cars and would like to do that. That happened on Saturday. On Monday morning, the phone rang and this fellow said that he was Gary down at the so-and-so avenue body shop. He said that he was looking to retire and asked if I would be interested in managing his auto body shop.
From that, I then went to ICBC, brought money into Langley and started fixing up things. I became known, and the next thing I knew, I was running for federal politics.
Again, there are these little voices, these little nuggets in our lives where we need to listen and follow God's leading. That is why I am here. I am just an average guy who has had an incredible honour serving with members and serving our community.
I want to thank God. I want to thank my family.
Diane and I were married in 1972, almost 47 years ago. She is my best friend. We have five kids and 10 grandkids. We are so blessed.
My passion has always been the environment, justice, family, seniors, children's issues and respecting life right from beginning to end.
Diane and I met at Trinity Western University. On the weekends, as I did not have a lot of money as a student, I would take her on a date to a seniors place, where we would play the guitar and sing. We just loved dealing with seniors. We did not have to be great singers for the seniors to like us.
We are so blessed with our kids and grandkids: Jon and Jen with Carrington and Rich; Ryan; Eric and Carolyn with Christian, Jonah, Jeremiah and Jakob; Nathan; and Kristen with Russel, Mya, Mark and Will.
I have always been involved with sports over the years, and I know the importance of teamwork. One cannot get anything accomplished as a lone wolf; we have to be part of a team. I understand the importance of this in politics as well, and I have this incredible team that I get to work with, my staff. I could not have accomplished anything without them: Annette, Kim, Jane, Liat, Monique, Megan and Rebeca.
As members all know, the best part of the job is being able to help people, and it has been such a blessing. We love our community, and it has been an incredible honour.
When I announced that I was not going to be running again, I felt that God was creating a new chapter of my life. I was preparing to be a chaplain giving pastoral care to seniors. I was doing this studying and reading, and, lo and behold, I got sick. I was reading all these case studies about whether to operate or whether to give palliative care, and I was honoured by our leader to be given the responsibility for palliative care. Then I found myself in the hospital, a surprise, and experiencing what it is like to face end of life. With all that reading and preparation, maybe it was not for me to administer to others but to prepare myself for this trial. I want to thank everyone so much.
When someone is first given the diagnosis that there are some serious problems, doctors are dealing with the physical person, but there is more than just the physical to us. There are the spiritual and the emotional sides, the psychosocial, but that was left unadministered to. While the doctors were looking at my physical condition, that was being ignored. This is tremendously important. Doctors give a diagnosis and look at how they are going to fix a patient, what kind of operation is needed or what chemo, but what about the person? What about the family and the distress? We need to encourage our medical system to make sure that they are providing a ministry for the rest of the person.
I was at the Vancouver General Hospital, which is an incredible hospital with incredible physicians and surgeons, but that need was left unmet.
I asked for palliative care. I was there for 15 days. Of the thousands of doctors, there are two palliative care physicians at VGH, and I never saw them. They came once while I was recovering and groggy and sleepy, so that need was unmet, unfortunately.
I have experienced first-hand the difficulty of accessing palliative care. We know from statistics that it is not available to 70% to 84% of Canadians, a tragic number. Our system is not designed to meet that need. We are trying to fix the body, but in some cases it is better not to do the heroic thing, not to remove the organs or use chemo and that sort of thing. Science has shown us that people can live longer and have a better quality of life, in some cases, if they are given palliative care, but those options were not provided to me. Why is that?
The system is broken and needs to be fixed. We passed Bill C-277. This Parliament is coming to an end, but I hope that the next Parliament will make a commitment to fix that and provide leadership in Canada, maybe through a university chair or something, so we can fix this situation. People are left in despair, emotions are raw and family support is not there, but they are not given the opportunity for palliative care. What is the only remaining option? If it is not surgery, it is maybe that they should consider MAID, medical assistance in dying. I was on the legislative committee when we discussed that proposal and passed it. We had to, because of the Carter decision.
We have a situation in Canada of basic needs not being met, and out of desperation people are saying that the easiest way is to end their life through an injection. They are saying that this would be the humane thing to do, but we cannot force people into that kind of a choice. We have to provide palliative care.
It has been such an incredible honour to work in this House. I was first elected federally in 2004, and 15 years went by just like that. It has been such an honour.
None of us are here by accident. I believe that strongly. I have a strong faith in God. If we are not here by accident, then what is the responsibility for each of us that goes along with that?
To whomsoever much has been given, from him much will be required.
Therefore, we have a responsibility to do what is right, to be truthful, to be people of integrity in making Canada better and working with one another when it is appropriate to do so.
I have not always done things right. I have a very mischievous nature, as chairs of different committees can attest, so I would like to apologize for some of the problems I created.
Death does come to each of us, and to some very early. We just said goodbye to a very dear friend. He had an aneurysm and he was gone. God has given me some time. I may be around for a long time or I may be around for a short time. We do not know.
This is the most important part: I want to encourage you all to love one another, to encourage each other, because God loves us. Pray for another. Pray about what is really important. Help one another. Seek God's will for you each day. Do what is right. Be honest.
We read in Galatians:
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
It is all legal. It is all good.
Life is precious. Life is sacred. I have been reminded very freshly of how valuable and precious life is, from beginning to end.
God bless you. I love you all. I will look forward to being able to serve. Until October, it will likely be out of my constituency office, but to God be the glory.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2019-05-07 15:41 [p.27488]
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member for Abbotsford. I truly did enjoy working with him, both in the local and in the federal government. I went on a trip with him in the last Parliament—we went on a trade mission—and I was worried because he worked so hard. He pushed himself and did such an incredible job for this country as the trade minister. I want to thank him for all his efforts. However, I also want to encourage him to take care of himself.
We sometimes in this place ignore the importance of taking care of our body. Sometimes our families are not given the time. It is a priority. You do not realize this at times until you find yourself in a hospital room. The priorities of what is important in life suddenly became very real to me when I was in the hospital. I encourage each of us to make sure we are taking time to take care of ourselves and spend time with our families, because when you are gone, you are gone and it is over, so make sure that is a priority in your life.
The comments and all the compliments have been so kind. To God be the glory. If you see any good in me, hopefully you are seeing Jesus.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2019-03-19 13:12 [p.26133]
Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions to present. The first is regarding conscience protection. It highlights the fact that the colleges of physicians and surgeons are forcing health care professionals, through an effective referral, to be part of assisted suicide—euthanasia—against their will. They are calling on this Parliament to enshrine in the Criminal Code the protection of conscience for physicians and health care institutions in order to protect them from coercion or intimidation.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2019-03-19 13:13 [p.26133]
Mr. Speaker, the second is a petition on gender-based violence. It highlights that there are some who prefer a boy over a girl, and through the use of sex selection, women and girls are being discriminated against. They are calling upon Parliament to condemn discrimination against girls occurring through sex selection.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2019-02-28 11:19 [p.25896]
Mr. Speaker, I support Bill C-77 and look forward to it going to the Senate, but I am shocked at the comments the member just made, saying that if it is last minute in the dying hours of a Parliament, then it really was not important. We have seen that with the seniors file, where in the dying days the Liberals have appointed a Minister of Seniors and now consultation with seniors has begun.
Would the member apologize on behalf of the government for ignoring seniors and making a last-minute, dying days gasp to deal with seniors' issues?
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-11 10:21 [p.24691]
Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present three petitions. The first one highlights that gender-based violence against girls begins before they are born. The petition asks Parliament to condemn discrimination against girls through the use of sex selection.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-11 10:22 [p.24691]
Mr. Speaker, the second petition, regarding impaired driving, asks that the Prime Minister keep his promise to increase the penalties on impaired driving causing death and that there be mandatory minimum sentences as he promised he would introduce.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-11 10:22 [p.24692]
Mr. Speaker, the last petition is on the Canada summer jobs. The petitioners ask the government to end the attestation requirement and the values test, and they are very happy that the Prime Minister apologized for last year's attestation and values test.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-10 14:08 [p.24611]
Mr. Speaker, Hark the herald angels sing “Glory to the newborn King! Peace on earth and mercy mild God and sinners reconciled" Joyful, all ye nations rise Join the triumph of the skies With the angelic host proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem” Hark! The herald angels sing “Glory to the newborn King!”
This is one of the Christmas carols I sang recently with my friends at Renaissance Retirement Residence in Langley. This carol reminds us of what Christmas is really all about: the birth of Jesus, God's gift to us.
During this busy Christmas season, with lights, presents and shopping, let us remember that it is Jesus's birthday and join the angels as they sing, “Glory to the new born King”. Let us share God's love with everyone, especially those in need.
On behalf of my beautiful wife Diane and I, we want to wish everyone a very merry Christmas.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-06 14:08 [p.24507]
Mr. Speaker, last summer the Liberals imposed a new restrictive, ideological values test as part of the Canada summer jobs program. Those who did not attest that they agreed with Liberal ideology did not get federal funding. Canadians, legal experts and the media were outraged and reacted overwhelmingly that discriminating against Canadians in this way was wrong and mean-spirited. The charter of rights guarantees us protection from this type of discrimination.
The Liberals refused to listen and cut off many worthy charitable organizations. The Conservatives pushed back and introduced a motion that would have allowed non-political, non-activist groups to receive funding without discrimination. The Prime Minister forced his MPs to oppose that motion.
The Prime Minister just announced that what he did was wrong and the values test will be removed. Is this announcement because next year is an election year?
Canadians now realize that the Liberal government cannot be trusted to protect their fundamental rights and freedoms.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-04 10:05 [p.24363]
Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present two petitions.
The first petition relates to the Canada summer jobs program. It highlights that the government's attestation requirement last year was in breach of the charter rights of Canadians.
The petitioners ask that next year, which is coming up very soon, the government not include the discriminatory attestation requirement.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-12-04 10:06 [p.24363]
Mr. Speaker, the second petition is with respect to impaired driving.
The petitioners highlight that the Prime Minister, leading up to the last election, promised to make impaired driving much more serious, that there would be mandatory minimums. They are disappointed that the Prime Minister has not keep that promise and is actually watering it down.
The petitioners ask the government to reconsider and to include mandatory sentencing for impaired driving causing death.
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-11-27 11:34 [p.24006]
Madam Speaker, I listened intently to my colleague, and I appreciated his comments.
However, the member is defending a budget that is indefensible. Canadians did vote for a change in 2015. However, what the government promised and what it is delivering are very different. The government promised to balance the budget. Now the budget before us is not even close to being balanced.
Could the member tell us when the government will balance the budget?
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-11-27 12:16 [p.24012]
Mr. Speaker, I listened intently to my Liberal colleague sharing with this House and Canadians his perspective on how good the budget is. The theme is spend, spend, spend and spend some more. If any organization, business or family in Canada spent the way the government is spending, would it be sustainable? If a company was to hire more staff, pay higher salaries, provide additional benefits, and spend and spend all on borrowed money, how long can that go on? I believe it cannot go on, it is not sustainable, and a company would go out of business because it cannot live and prosper on borrowed money. Therefore, the question is this. Does he believe this is sustainable? Hopefully, he will say no. If so, when will the budget be balanced?
View Mark Warawa Profile
CPC (BC)
View Mark Warawa Profile
2018-11-27 12:34 [p.24014]
Mr. Speaker, my colleague's speech was thoughtful, highlighting that the government continues to fail, and its legacy of broken promises.
The government members have said they are investing in Canadians. Where is this money coming from that the Liberals are investing in Canadians? If they are spending, spending, spending, is it sustainable?
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