In recognition of Veterans’ Week

I rise on behalf of the Liberal caucus to also pay tribute to Veterans’ Week.

Each year in the week leading up to Remembrance Day, we are asked to take time to remember those who sacrificed their lives for the freedoms and liberties that are a fundamental part of life in Canada. Unfortunately, those sacrifices seem closer to home this year than in past years with the recent deaths of Corporal Nathan Cirillo as well as Warrant Officer, Patrice Vincent.

We as Canadians have a duty. We have a duty to ensure that our veterans are taken care of. In the last few weeks, our military men and women have departed for overseas duties in the Middle East. We need to take action today, Mr. Speaker, so that when they return, we are ready to support them.

As we approach Remembrance Day, we must not remember only the sacrifices of the first and second World Wars, but also those who have served in NATO and in UN missions, and also those who have most recently served in Afghanistan, Libya and, once again, Iraq.

Our veterans are our community leaders and it is important to pay tribute to them not just during November, but every day. They return home with the scars of conflict, lest we forget that democracy is not an easy undertaking. It is a privilege awarded to our citizens by our current serving forces and by our veterans.