Chilliwack-Hope MP Mark Strahl put forth his first private members bill since becoming an MP in 2015.

Chilliwack-Hope MP, Mark Strahl, introduces his first private members bill in House of Commons

Private member bills give MPs outside of Cabinet the opportunity to raise awareness, says Strahl

While there’s no doubt navigating the federal political field in Canada can be confusing for some, it’s important to remember that our elected leaders—whether we voted for them or not—are on our side.

Following that, Mark Strahl, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Chilliwack-Hope, introduced a private member’s bill in the House of Commons last week at the behest of one of his constituents.

“I’m proud to champion an issue that is important to my constituent, Deanna Badiuk, in Ottawa,” said Strahl on the floor of the House. His bill seeks to create greater awareness around Acromegaly, an extremely rare disease affecting about 2,000 Canadians, by declaring November 1 of each year Acromegaly Awareness Day.

READ MORE: Hope MP, Mark Strahl, hosted New Year skating event to ring in 2019

“I am thankful that she brought this matter to my attention and for her tireless efforts to raise awareness for this rare disease,” continued Strahl.

Acromegaly patients may suffer from complications including arthritis, diabetes, sleep apnea, hypertension, colonic polyps, carpal tunnel, and enlarged vital organs. And Badiuk, who’s the president and founder of the Vancouver Acromegaly Support Group, came up with the idea for the bill and brought it forth to Strahl for his consideration.

Within the Canadian government, private member bills provide opportunities for legislature to be introduced by a member who’s not acting on behalf of an executive branch.

“Every Member of Parliament who’s not a member of Cabinet can present private member bills to try out new input or to raise awareness of certain issues,” explained Strahl during a telephone interview.

There are limitations, however, as MPs can’t introduce bills that commit the government to spending any money. And it’s also a timely process: the bills must go through the legislative council and the Library of Parliament, who drafts it in (both official languages) before it’s tabled.

But “it’s an opportunity for people who aren’t a member of Cabinet to shape the debate for a certain number of hours each week. I took the opportunity to raise an issue that’s important to a group of people in my riding.”

Which is why Strahl says he introduced his bill on Feb. 28: “I tabled it on Rare Diseases Day because it is a rare disease.”

And while Strahl says “there is no chance I will be able to debate (the bill),” because it was introduced as a private member’s bill, rather than an executive bill, it won’t die on the order paper when the election is called this fall, but will instead remain when Parliament is prorogued.

“I take it very seriously when a constituent comes in and asks for help (but) Deanna is one of the first (to make this very specific request), so I’ve taken my direction from her on this (and) I’m thankful … for her tireless efforts to raise awareness of this rare disease.

“If other constituents have ideas (they’re passionate about), I would take those as they came in a case-by-case basis,” continued Strahl.

If you would like more information about Mark Stahl, or would like to contact him, please visit his website at MarksStrahl.com. For more information about Acromegaly, please visit AcromegalyWest.com.

BC politics

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

‘It’s frightening’: Hemlock Valley trucker on being on the road during COVID-19

Armed with a keychain-sized hand sanitizer, trucker Brennan Bateman set out for the United States

SD78, meet your new superintendent

Balan Moorthy takes over from Karen Nelson August 1

COLUMN: The other graph that shows B.C. can beat COVID-19

Is the curve being flattened? data on hospitalizations provides a crucial answer.

‘Better days will return’: Queen Elizabeth delivers message amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Queen said crisis reminds her of her first address during World War II in 1940

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

COVID-19: Hospitals remain safe for childbirth, say Vancouver Island care providers

North Island Hospital has been asked to share its perinatal COVID-19 response plan

Insurance shock for B.C. condo owners

Claim-free two-year-old townhouse complex told premium will nearly triple

Canadian cadets to mark 103rd anniversary of Vimy Ridge April 9 virtually

Idea of Captain Billie Sheridan in Williams Lake, B.C. who wondered what to do in times of COVID-19

B.C. VIEWS: Pandemic shows need for adequate care home staffing

Seniors in B.C. care homes face challenging times

Most Read