Veterans Affairs Canada

Veterans Affairs Canada

November 04, 2011 16:12 ET

Senate Ceremony Launches Veterans' Week 2011

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 4, 2011) -

Editors Note: There is a photo associated with this press release.

The Honourable Noël A. Kinsella, Speaker of the Senate of Canada, the Honourable Andrew Scheer, Speaker of the House of Commons, and the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, officially launched Veterans' Week 2011 today during a ceremony held in the Senate Chamber.

"Veterans' Week is a time when we recognize and applaud all those who served and returned to their homes and to their families," said Speaker Kinsella. "Canadians take great pride in the members of our armed forces, to whom we owe so much. We particularly remember those who have fallen in the line of duty and are deeply moved on those sad occasions when a new name is read into the record. The wreath I lay today on behalf of the Senate of Canada is a tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice."

Speaker Scheer said, "I join with all Members of Parliament in saluting Canada's Veterans and the brave men and women of the Canadian Forces. It is because of their sacrifices that we are able to exercise our freedoms in the House of Commons each day."

Every year, November 5 to 11 is Veterans' Week. It is a time when Canadians recognize and remember the men and women who left their homes in Canada to help deal with tyranny and injustice on behalf of our nation.

"The men and women who have served our country gave selflessly for our freedom; some paid with their lives. We are enormously grateful and must always remember their sacrifices," said Minister Blaney. "During Veterans' Week, we pay tribute to all Canadian Veterans and continue to honour those who serve our country in areas of conflict today. I encourage all Canadians to get involved in remembrance."

This year's Senate ceremony focuses on Canada's changing role in Afghanistan. Forty-nine countries are participating in the International Security Assistance Force, a NATO-led formation that operates in Afghanistan under a United Nations mandate. Canada ended its combat mission in Kandahar province in July and began a non-combat, Kabul-centred training role (Operation ATTENTION) that will continue until 2014.

In attendance at the ceremony were current serving Canadian Forces members who have served in a variety of international theatres of operation including Afghanistan, Libya, and Haiti - as well as on domestic missions with Rangers in the Canadian Arctic and Search and Rescue Technicians providing medical aid and evacuation from some of the harshest and most remote areas of Canada.

Veterans Affairs Canada acknowledges that the needs of Veterans are rapidly changing. The Government of Canada is improving financial support for thousands of Canadian Veterans; the Department is working to serve Veterans and their families better, faster and in more modern and convenient ways.

Minister Blaney will participate in several commemorative events during Veterans' Week, including the National Remembrance Day Ceremony at the National War Memorial, to highlight the importance of remembrance and the continued support for Canadian Veterans.

"During Veterans' Week, we are asking Canadians to get involved in making remembrance more than something they feel. I want to encourage everyone, especially the youth of our country, to make remembrance something they do," said Minister Blaney, during a statement to the House of Commons earlier this week. "This year we encourage everyone to take remembrance one step further by attending a Remembrance Day ceremony, visiting a local cenotaph or monument, sharing their thoughts of remembrance online, or wearing a poppy with pride."

For information on Veterans' Week and commemorative events in communities across the country, visit veterans.gc.ca. Canadians can also visit the Facebook "Canada Remembers" page to leave a message of remembrance or follow us on Twitter@VeteransENG_CA.

To view the photo associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://www.marketwire.com/library/20111104-senateBIG.jpg

Contact Information

  • Media inquiries:
    Janice Summerby
    Media Relations Advisor
    Veterans Affairs Canada
    613-992-7468

    Mona Ishack
    Communications Officer
    Senate of Canada
    613-944-4075

    Codie Taylor
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs
    613-996-4649

    Heather Bradley
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Speaker of the House of Commons
    613-992-5042