Cariboo-Prince George MP Todd Doherty. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo -Williams Lake Tribune)

Cariboo-Prince George MP Todd Doherty. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo -Williams Lake Tribune)

Despite challenges our Cariboo spirit is strong: MP Todd Doherty

A look back at 2021 and the year ahead

By MP Todd Doherty

Year in review

On behalf of my family and I, let me first express my gratitude and appreciation to the residents of Cariboo-Prince George for sending me back to Ottawa as your Member of Parliament for a third term.

Representing our region in the House of Commons is the greatest honour of my life. Whether you voted for me or supported another candidate in the recent election, know I will do my best to be a strong voice for you and your family in Ottawa.

Earlier this summer, Canada entered a fourth wave of the COVID pandemic; the Taliban gained full control of Afghanistan and our province was under a state of emergency due to wildfires that destroyed communities and displaced thousands across British Columbia.

Rather than focusing on these issues, and others, Justin Trudeau called an unnecessary pandemic election. Over $600 million dollars later, parliament returned nearly identical to its pre-election state.

Because of the unnecessary election and Justin Trudeau’s delay in getting back to work, the winter parliamentary session was cut short. Ministerial mandate letters, usually released shortly after the swearing-in of cabinet, were only made public one day before the House of Commons adjourned for the Christmas recess. Most parliamentary committees, where the collective opposition holds the majority, met only once and only to elect a committee chair.

While the parliamentary session was short, Conservatives were still able to bring the issues of skyrocketing inflation and affordability to the forefront. We introduced and debated solutions to address the housing supply crisis, including reasonable measures to build more homes and increase affordable rental supply. Sadly, but not surprisingly, we received no support for these measures from the Liberal government.

One year after I passed a motion in parliament to create a national three-digit suicide prevention hotline, this life-saving initiative has yet to be implemented.

I have continued to demand answers and a timeline from this government for when the hotline will be accessible to struggling Canadians. This delay is unreasonable, unnecessary, and unacceptable.

Here at home, my constituency office remains open and accessible. Should you have questions or concerns regarding any federal programs, services or issues, please don’t hesitate to contact my team so we can assist you.

As we move into a new year, I look forward to being back with you at some of our region’s world class events in person. Billy Barker Days, the BC Northern Exhibition and of course — the Greatest Show on Dirt — the Williams Lake Stampede!

Together, we have been through a lot over the last six years. From wildfires and floods, to mill closures and over two years of a global pandemic.

We’ve seen lockdowns lead to job losses on a massive scale; small businesses have been destroyed. Vaccine mandates have divided families and the mental health of Canadians has been put to the ultimate test.

As a nation, we are more divided than ever before.

Despite this all, our Cariboo spirit is strong, and we never let adversity keep us down. I remain hopeful about our future. Our potential is unlimited, and I believe our best days are ahead of us.

From our family to yours, Kelly and I would like to wish you all a Happy New Year, Cariboo-Prince George.

Please be safe and we’ll see you in 2022!

Todd Doherty is the MP for Cariboo-Prince George.


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