Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Nepean-Carleton MPP Lisa MacLeod made the following member's statement at Queen's Park today:
"Thank you very much Mr. Speaker. A sweet 16 is something every parent wants their child to celebrate. It's an important milestone (like) teaching them to drive or watching them grow older. My friend Allan Hubley and his wife Wendy don't have that opportunity. Their beautiful boy Jamie would have turned 16 today.
Jamie had been bullied because he was a figure skater. He was bullied because of his sexuality. He was bullied because he was different. A gifted singer and skater, Jamie was tormented not only by his bullies, but also by teenage mental illness.
For those who have mental illness, coping with bullying sometimes means they can't see a better day. So it's up to us in this assembly to find a better way. The member for Ottawa Centre and I are committed to finding the gaps in services in our community. We're going to highlight our plan for service providers, what they do best. And we're going to ensure that Ottawa has a suicide prevention plan. Because one teenage suicide, or one suicide, is one too many.
Because kids in a dark place, and parents with innumerable questions expect us to work together to prevent suicide, whether we are right ot left, gay or straight, regardless of our culture, our religion, or our economic circumstances. Because kids after all are just that: They're kids. And they deserve, Mr. Speaker, a sweet 16. Thank you very much, and happy birthday Jamie."