As a Canadian and as an elected official, Canada Day is easily my favorite day of the year. It is that one special day when we, as a nation, come together and celebrate all that we love about our country. While we gather in celebration here in Canada it should not be lost on us that in Egypt the citizens are also gathering in mass for entirely different but important reasons. We should also not overlook that our neighbors in Alberta are also gathering together to support fellow citizens in the cleanup after a devastating amount of flooding. More and more often around the globe mass gatherings of citizens are becoming increasingly common. However what is becoming less so is celebrations such as Canada Day. Giving thanks and sharing in the spirit that we collectively share is part of what makes us unique.
This Canada Day I was able to visit with citizens in Merritt, Summerland, Penticton, West Kelowna and Peachland, driving to each community with a few other stops along the way. The beauty and diversity of our region here in Okanagan-Coquihalla combined with the warm hospitality of those who live here are part of what makes Canada Day such a special one. I would like to sincerely thank the many volunteers and citizens who give generously of their time to come out and share in the spirit of this amazing day. It is always a pleasure to meet so many new people and I am already looking forward to my summer listening tour so that I can return to many of these same communities and meet with more citizens. Hearing and sharing the thoughts and ideas that help make our country great is part of how Canada has become the envy of the world.
On that same note, recently the New York and Copenhagen based Reputation Institute named Canada as the world’s most reputable country for the third year in a row. Trust, admiration and respect are many of the qualities that contributed to Canada earning this esteemed position based on 27,000 submissions from G-8 countries who ranked 50 different nations. Following Canada in the second ranking was Sweden with Switzerland in third and Australia in fourth. Norway, Denmark, New Zealand, Finland, the Netherlands and Austria rounded out the top 10 countries while the United States in contrast was ranked 22nd.
As mentioned earlier, my annual summer listening tour will begin in mid July- if you would like to arrange for a meeting at your home, business or other location in your community, please do not hesitate to contact my office to set up an appointment. As something new this summer, I will also be hosting a number of drop-in Friday’s at both my West Kelowna/Westbank and Penticton constituency offices. I have taken note that some citizens can better take advantage of a “drop-in” format as opposed to having scheduled meetings. These Fridays, I often refer to as “barber shop” Fridays, will be advertised through my upcoming MP reports. If you have any questions, comments or concerns please do not hesitate to give me a call. I can be reached at 1-800-665-8711 or via email email@example.com
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Dan Albas is the Member of Parliament elect for Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola.