Forest firefighters

Mr. Speaker, this past week the people of Timmins—James Bay saw heroism up close. Our region was under threat from numerous fires, and we had over 1,500 people evacuated from the various fire zones.


    In the case of Kirkland Lake 8, the fire reached within three kilometres of the town, and for nearly a week the emergency officials not only had to fight the fire but also had to prepare for the possible evacuation of an entire community. It was an enormous undertaking.


    In the case of Timmins 9, this was a major firestorm that drew on all the resources of our provincial MNR fire crews. It was touch and go for days.


     I had the great honour of working closely with the emergency teams, and their professionalism and dedication were beyond compare. I specifically want to thank the MNR crews, emergency measures, municipal officials, police, hydro, Red Cross and the many volunteers.


 It is going to be a long, hot summer. I would like to thank, on behalf of the New Democratic caucus, all of Canada's fire crews who put their lives on the line in the summer to make sure that our northern communities are safe.