Replace Kent Hehr as the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities

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Last week, our Canadian Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, Kent Hehr, has been called out by thalidomide survivors for making insensitive, condescending and offensive comments during their interactions. These remarks were made at meeting on October 19th, where the group pushed for the federal government to stay true to its commitment to make further compensation to victims of thalidomide, a now-banned pregnancy drug that was used as a sleeping pill to cure morning sickness for pregnant women.

In response to their concerns, the Minister replied, "You don’t have it as bad today as adults as you did when you were kids...everyone in Canada has a sob story. Lots of people have it bad in Canada- disabled people, poor people, not just you", according to thalidomide survivor Fiona Sampson. When the Minister was told the impact of this condition on the victims' life spans, Sampson says Hehr responded with "So, you probably have about 10 years left now. That's good news for the Canadian government." 

Not only that, Hehr is also being accused of making condescending remarks while being the Minister of Veteran Affairs. Calgary mom Jennifer McCrea is engaging in a class action lawsuit against the Minister for his dismissive attitude and for denying benefits to a group of mothers who were on maternity leave. Additionally, Hehr has also been accused of making insensitive remarks to Nova Scotia activist Kim Davis and her husband, Blair Davis, a Canadian veteran who is suffering from chronic post-traumatic stress disorder. They had met with Hehr to discuss the possibility of providing financial benefits to families of soldiers who suffer from serious injuries. 

This petition is to ask our Honourable Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, to replace Kent Hehr as the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities. As an elected Member of Parliament, and a Cabinet Minister for Persons with Disabilities, Hehr's comments are a disgrace to Canadians. Although he has apologised for his remarks, these allegations show that Hehr is an ignorant and insensitive representative who lacks care and empathy to Canadians who suffer from all kinds of disabilities. We urge Mr. Trudeau to fire Hehr from his position, and replace him with someone more suitable for this important role.



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