Banff-Airdrie MP Blake Richards felt a measure of relief last week when he learned recommendations have finally been tabled for his Motion 110 – but maintains that actions speak louder than words.
The motion has been a major undertaking by the Conservative MP this term, as it seeks to provide supports for families who have experienced the sudden loss of an infant child.
Richards has received vocal support from such families as the Cormiers in Airdrie and the Sawchucks in Cochrane – both families who experienced infant loss.
Richards has been pushing for the Employment Benefits (EI) program to accommodate bereavement leave and one of the key recommendations made by the Standing Committee of Human Resources is to implement a 12-15 week leave for parents grieving the loss of an infant child.
But the push isn’t over for Richards – who is concerned that a looming fall election and the SNC-Lavalin conundrum ongoing in Parliament Hill could prevent these recommendations from being tabled into action and included in the 2019 budget.
“I was pleasantly surprised,” said Richards, upon learning that the recommendations had been tabled. “This has been an issue we have had to push the government for every step of the way.”
The report was supposed to be delivered in early December 2018.
Richards said he is concerned that if the government doesn’t take immediate action, the delays could be significant.
“If we can’t force this government to do this, we’re forcing the next one,” adding that constituency feedback has been overwhelmingly supportive.
To learn more about Motion 110 or to sign Richard’s petition, visit blakerichards.ca/motion110.