Nov. 11 should be a statutory holiday: Ottawa MPP
An Ottawa-area MPP is calling for Remembrance Day to be turned into a statutory holiday in Ontario.
Lisa MacLeod, a Progressive Conservative who represents the riding of Nepean–Carleton, introduced a private member's bill Thursday at Queen's Park to do just that.
The Respect for Ontario Veterans, Soldiers and War Dead Act would turn Nov. 11 into a statutory holiday and require schools to hold a Remembrance Day assembly on the prior school day.
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Remembrance Day is a public holiday in most provinces, but not Ontario.
"There's been an outpouring of support for Canadian soldiers, our war veterans and our war dead," MacLeod told CBC News.
"You only have to see the grassroots campaign that has happened on the Highway of Heroes from Trenton to Toronto each and every time one of our fallen comes back to Canada," she said, referring to a stretch of Ontario's Highway 401.
Sophia Aggelonitis, Ontario's seniors minister, said Remembrance Day is important and that the government is looking forward to debate on the bill.
A full day off to pay their respects is what Ontarians want, MacLeod said, citing social media. One Facebook group devoted to the goal has more than 13,000 members.
"There is that cry out there.… I think it's time that legislators start listening to the public."
MacLeod's proposal would see the Remembrance Day statutory holiday replace February's Family Day.