MP Rousseau tours Stanstead’s gran­ite in­dus­try

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE - Vic­to­ria Vanier Stanstead

NDP MP Jean Rousseau, who was nom­i­nated on Sun­day as the Comp­ton/Stanstead NDP can­di­date for the up­com­ing fed­eral elec­tion, vis­ited Stanstead yester- day to learn more about the gran­ite in­dus­try. It was his first tour of the gran­ite shops, here in Stanstead, and he learnt about their chal­lenges. “The in­dus­try has prob­lems at­tract­ing skilled work­ers. I was told by one of the com­pa­nies that they have re­quested

in­for­ma­tion about ap­pren­tice pro­grams and have been wait­ing for a re­sponse for over a year,” said the MP who also learnt about the fierce com­pe­ti­tion from China. The shops vis­ited on Tues­day were Granit De­sign, Rock of Ages, and Rouleau Granit.

Be­ing a bor­der town, The MP is also con­cerned about the mas­sive cuts to the Cana­dian Bor­der Pa­trol Ser­vice ($140 mil­lion) and the RCMP ($350 mil­lion) about two years ago and the im­pli­ca­tions of those cuts.

“I’ve de­cided that when I make my first state­ment in the House of Com­mons this year, it will be about Stanstead and all the pos­si­bil­i­ties here,” men­tioned Mr. Rousseau. The other is­sues of ma­jor con­cern to Mr. Rousseau and the NDP in­clude the ma­jor cuts to Canada Post, Ra­dio Canada and the CBC. “Em­ploy­ment In­surance is still a big is­sue. Only 40% of those who ap­ply re­ceive the in­surance; they refuse al­most ev­ery de­mand and you have to push for it. And govern­ment train­ing is well-pub­li­cized by the govern­ment, but it’s very hard to ac­cess.”

“The first topic in the House may be the con­flict with ISIL. Cana­dian forces have be­come in­volved in the fight­ing so we will re­mind Mr. Harper that that was not the mis­sion that we agreed to. The af­fair of Raif Badawi also con­cerns us. His fam­ily lives in Sher­brooke and we are very wor­ried about him.”

Mr. Rousseau’s nom­i­na­tion cer­e­mony was held at the Sher­brooke Air­port restau­rant and fea­tured a spe­cial guest: Nancy Lay­ton. “I was very touched. She has al­ways been sup­port­ive of my man­date, of­ten at­tend­ing my events. I was quite hon­ored that she at­tended,” said Mr. Rousseau.

Asked why the cer­e­mony was held at the air­port, Mr. Rousseau re­sponded: “All of the MRC’s around the air­port could ben­e­fit from in­dus­trial in­vest­ment if it were re-cer­ti­fied. The Sher­brooke Cham­ber of Com­merce has told me that the re­gion loses one in­ter­est­ing op­por­tu­nity per month be­cause there is no air­port. Even as far away as here in Stanstead, at Granit De­sign they told me to­day that many of their cus­tomers would come more of­ten if they could fly into Sher­brooke. If we win the next elec­tion, Mr. Mul­cair will make sure that the safety cer­ti­fi­ca­tion of the air­port would be in place.”

Ac­com­pa­ny­ing NDP MP Jean Rousseau (cen­tre) on his tour of Stanstead yes­ter­day were Stanstead’s Busi­ness Devel­op­ment Con­sul­tant Joanne La­je­unesse McKay and mayor Philippe Du­til.

Photo cour­tesy

Jean Rousseau

gets a heart­felt hug from Nancy Lay­ton dur­ing the

nom­i­na­tion cer­e­mony on Sun­day.

Seen at last Sun­day’s nom­i­na­tion cer­e­mony, held at the Sher­brooke Air­port restau­rant, were (l. to r.) Pierre-Luc

Dusseault, MP Sher­brooke; Alain Giguère, MP Mar­cAurèle Fortin; Jean Rousseau, MP Comp­ton-Stanstead; and Robert Au­bin, MP Trois-Rivières.

A crowd of about sixty hun­gry sup­port­ers at­tended the nom­i­na­tion cer­e­mony of the lo­cal NDP can­di­dates in­clud­ing

Jean Rousseau, seen here.

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