Each year, for the past three years, my office has encouraged residents of Stormont, Dundas and South Glengarry to show their patriotism by displaying a Canadian flag at their home on July 1st. I have had the honour to stand in the House of Commons each of those years and declare SD&SG the most patriotic riding in the whole country. I cannot begin to tell you how proud I was to be able to do this.
I am again bursting with pride because of the generosity that Canadians here in SD&SG and throughout the entire country have shown to the population of Haiti. Our country and our government were first to help Haitians after this terrible devastation took place. We had an advance team of Canadian Forces personnel in Haiti within twelve hours of the earthquake. We immediately convened a meeting of G20 countries in Montreal to bring together all countries willing to help in the rebuilding of Haiti.
Canada deployed two ships and 2,000 personnel within 8 days of the earthquake. Various Canadian police forces also sent trained officers to help with security concerns.
Canadians from coast to coast opened their hearts and their wallets more generously than any nation around the world. Ordinary Canadians, like you and I here in SD&G, have donated a total of $145 million in the first 30 days since the earthquake. The government of Canada will match $123 million of this donation.
Locally, constituents have shown tremendous generosity by donating large sums of money and a variety of goods and services through various agencies and service clubs. It is most heart warming to see folks of different cultural, religious and political backgrounds reaching out to our Haitian neighbours in their desperate time of need.
Once again the constituents of Stormont Dundas and South Glengarry have proven that we live in the most patriotic riding in Canada. I am extremely proud to be able to say that I have the honour of being their Member off Parliament. Guy Lauzon, MP