Speech from the Throne to open the Second Session of the Forty-Third Parliament of Canada

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Speech from the Throne to open the Second Session of the Forty-Third Parliament of Canada

by ahnationtalk on September 23, 2020161 Views

Honourable Senators,

Members of the House of Commons,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Every day on our shared planet, millions face hardships that test the human spirit. Extreme weather, wildfires, poverty, conflicts, discrimination, and inequalities. Rarely though, has all of humanity faced a single common insidious enemy. An invisible enemy that respects no borders, thrives anywhere, hits anyone.

To overcome a pandemic requires the work and resolve of every order of government, every community, and every one of us.

We don’t decide when hardship comes, but here in Canada, we have decided how we wanted to address it. We have adapted in remarkable ways.

We Canadians did our part. We changed our habits, postponed our plans, switched to teleworking or had to completely reinvent our work, all this, while caring for one another.

We owe an immense debt to those who served and still serve on the frontlines, to health care personnel and essential workers, women and men in uniform, volunteers and leaders, everywhere in the country.

There has been a lot of suffering and we all mourn those who have passed.

We trust science to lead the fight until a safe and effective vaccine becomes available. But until then, we must keep our guard up, using the tools that are available to us now – such as testing, treatments and physical distancing measures.

Like a reed in high winds, we might sway but we will not break. Because our roots are firmly in place, our goals clear, and because we have hope – the hope that lifts the soul on dark days and keeps us focused on the future.

Canadians have lived through uncertain times before and have always prevailed because determination, concern for others, courage, and common sense define our nation.

We must bring all those qualities to bear once again and continue to work for the common good, and for a better, safer, and more just society.

This is who we are and what will see us through to brighter days.

Opening

For over 150 years, Parliamentarians have worked together to chart Canada’s path forward.

Your predecessors met when Confederation was only a few months old, setting the course for a young country. They stood united through Canada’s toughest days, leading the nation through wars and depression. And as they did, each Parliamentarian was called to meet their times.

Today, Canadians expect you to do the same. They expect you to work together on their behalf and meet this crucial moment.

Less than a year ago, we gathered here for a Throne Speech to open the 43rd Parliament. Since then, our realities have changed. And so must our approach.

This pandemic is the most serious public health crisis Canada has ever faced.

Over 9,000 Canadians have died in six months. For our neighbours in the United States, this figure is over 200,000. Globally, it’s nearly a million.

But these aren’t just numbers. These are friends and family. Neighbours and colleagues.

The pandemic is the story of parents who have died alone, without loved ones to hold their hand.

It is the story of kids who have gone months without seeing friends.

Of workers who have lost their jobs.

The last six months have laid bare fundamental gaps in our society, and in societies around the world. This pandemic has been hard for everyone. But for those who were already struggling, the burden has been even heavier.

For parents – and especially moms – who are facing impossible choices between kids and career.

For racialized Canadians and Indigenous Peoples who are confronted by systemic barriers.

For young people who are worried about what their future will hold.

For seniors who are isolated, frightened, and most at risk.

And for workers who, while earning the lowest wages in the most precarious sectors, have been on the frontlines of the pandemic.

We must address these challenges of today. But we also cannot forget about the tests of the future.

The world came into this pandemic facing the risks and consequences of climate change. A lesson that COVID-19 has taught us, is that we need to match challenges with decisiveness and determination.

On all of these fronts – health and the economy, equality, and the environment – we must take bold action.

The Government will meet these challenges.

The Government’s approach will have four foundations.

The first foundation of this plan is to fight the pandemic and save lives.

The second foundation of the Government’s plan is supporting people and businesses through this crisis as long as it lasts, whatever it takes. Effectively dealing with the health crisis is the best thing we can do for the economy. Government action has already helped Canadians stay safe, and buffered the worst economic impacts.

The third foundation is to build back better to create a stronger, more resilient Canada. To do this, we must keep strengthening the middle class and helping people working hard to join it, and continue creating jobs and building long-term competitiveness with clean growth. We must also keep building safer communities for everyone.

The fourth and final foundation of this plan is to stand up for who we are as Canadians. We cannot forget what has made us a country that is welcoming. A country that celebrates two official languages. That achieves progress on gender equality, walks the road of reconciliation, and fights discrimination of every kind.

This is our generation’s crossroads.

Do we move Canada forward, or let people be left behind? Do we come out of this stronger, or paper over the cracks that the crisis has exposed?

This is the time to remember who we are as Canadians.

This is the opportunity to contain the global crisis and build back better, together.

Read More: https://www.canada.ca/en/privy-council/campaigns/speech-throne/2020/stronger-resilient-canada.html

NT5

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