OTTAWA – Today, Elizabeth May's Private Members' Bill C-442, the National Lyme Disease Strategy Act, is up for its Second Reading debate in the House of Commons. Elizabeth May, Member of Parliament for Saanich-Gulf Islands and Leader of the Green Party of Canada, will be leading off the debate in support of this important piece of legislation.
This non-partisan bill received its First Reading in June 2012. This Second Reading debate will lead to a Second Reading vote, most likely in April.
At First Reading, the bill was seconded by Kirsty Duncan, Liberal MP from Etobicoke North. Today at Second Reading, it is seconded by Conservative MP Terence Young of Oakville, who also sits on the Health Committee. The Official Opposition, the NDP, has also committed to support the bill.
"I am very encouraged and grateful for the dozens of members of the House who have approached me and committed to vote for my private member's bill to address Lyme disease. I am particularly indebted to The Hon. Rona Ambrose for her support. We have agreed that once the bill gets through Second Reading and into committee, a few amendments will be helpful. We will be speaking of a "federal framework" from here on; one that promotes the sharing of best practices from across Canada."
Bill C-442 has already received letters of support from the medical community, including endorsements from the Canadian Medical Association and the College of Family Physicians of Canada.
Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti, President of the Canadian Medical Association stated in his letter: "The Canadian Medical Association supports the implementation of a national strategy to address the breadth of public health and medical issues surrounding the spread of Lyme disease in Canada. As with any new infectious disease threat, Canada needs to ensure we are prepared to address the impact of Lyme disease on its citizens."
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