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Swearing-In of the 2020 House of Commons Pages

" First and foremost, Pages, welcome to your House!

On behalf of all Members of Parliament, I am delighted to welcome you to the House of Commons and to congratulate you on your swearing-in.

I would also like to take a moment to acknowledge your families, who are joining us from across Canada to share this important event with you.

I know they wish more than anything that they could be here to watch you as you begin this new chapter in your lives.

Tomorrow, you will begin a job that is like no other, and an experience you will never forget.

Now, every year of the Page Program has its own special moments and milestones; but I think that you, the pages of 2020, are living a truly original experience.

Tomorrow, you will step onto the floor of the House of Commons and become part of the parliamentary family, at a time when our country is facing unprecedented challenges as a result of the ongoing pandemic.

These challenges will affect you in your work here, as it has affected us all, but the knowledge and experience you will gain during your time with us will be as valuable to you as it was to those pages who came before you.

Now that you have completed your training, you are more familiar with the duties you’ll be performing in and out of the Chamber; and while everything will seem a little overwhelming at first, I know you will get the hang of it in no time.

You may find that the photos you spent so much time memorizing don’t always match the flesh-and-blood Members you will see in the Chamber.

Over the last few months, some of them may have lost weight, or their glasses, or their beards… but things will soon fall into place.

The message I want to convey to you today, in this for-the-moment quiet Chamber, is that you are an important part of the smooth functioning of the House.

The Members and I count on your discretion, your efficiency and your commitment to help us carry out our responsibilities as parliamentarians.

For our part, we will strive to impart to you our passion for democracy, our desire to serve our fellow citizens, and our determination to continue building a more just and prosperous Canada for you and for future generations.

No job is fun every day – not even mine! But in the months ahead, you will have a rare opportunity to learn about how Canadians govern themselves; you will learn about your colleagues, who have come from all across the country to work side by side with you.

And you will learn about yourself, and how much you have to contribute to this special place, the House of Commons of Canada.

The pandemic has unquestionably changed our workplace, our universities, our professional and personal lives.

But we are adapting to those changes, and working together, it will be all right.

Over the years you will look back with pride at your time here, alongside the Members of Parliament, the procedural clerks, and of course, your colleagues.

It’s going to be a great year – congratulations and welcome to the 2020 Page program!"