OK So here is the final detailed scoop for tomorrow at Queen’s Park! Sorry for the late update but I just got off the phone with MPP Hoggarth’s Assistant.
~The 3rd Reading of Bill 163 will happen at around 9am.
~The Passing of the Bill will be between 10:30 – noon.
~MPP Flynn has already reserved many of the private gallery seats, so anyone who reached out for a pass will still be on the list, but it will be first come first serve AFTER he fills the seats he requires.
~If we can’t sit in private gallery, we can sit in the upper level gallery, but once again this is on a first come first serve basis and apparently they are expecting many first responders to attend.
~There will be an assistant located in the main hall and at the south basement entrance who will lead us to where we need to go with respect to which seats are left.
~There will be a reception to follow, but the room only holds 50 and they already have 70 attending; so we will have to play that by ear.
~Bring your ID
BUT…WITH THAT ALL BEING SAID…whether we sit at home, at work, or at Queen’s Park, tomorrow is a day in which we should celebrate as we have been waiting for this legislation to pass for many years. But in my opinion, even more importantly, we need to take time to reflect on the lives which have been lost and the families and friends who have been so deeply impacted prior to the implementation of Bill 163.
I have read a few posts today with regards to how Bill 163 should not pass yet because it doesn’t include certain workplace mental health injuries. And while I certainly encourage discussion of the expansion of legislation in order to protect the greatest number of individuals, I DO NOT support the delay of this Bill. I will not stand by and see another peer battle PTSD without hope. I will not stand by and learn that my peer can’t afford their mortgage and needs to go bankrupt. I certainly will not stand by to hear another family cry when they learn that the demons of PTSD have taken their loved away from them forever.
The battle for greater inclusive legislation is in motion. More hard work is yet to come. But I AM SO GRATEFUL that the passing of Bill163 will rescue so many of our peers and their families from desperation and hopelessness.
I look forward to seeing you tomorrow!
~Nat