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Ontario honours first responders


March 17, 2014
By Corrie Sloot

Ontario has designated a day to honour and celebrate its first responders. May 1 of this and every year thereafter has been proclaimed as First Responders Day.

A private member’s bill proposed by Newmarket-Aurora MPP Frank Klees was passed into law in December after receiving unanimous support. Klees credited author Vali Stone and her books <911: True tales of courage and compassion> for inspiring the bill.

“I have an extremely high level of respect for all emergency responders,” said Stone, “and wanted to give them a voice.”

Married to a police officer for more than 38 years, Stone, who also wrote , said the stories first responders told her motivated her to push for a day to recognize them.

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“I am proud that we can honour and stay true to these heroic people and the role that they play in our society. I am happy that the public can find the so much needed admiration towards responders as well as their families. Even though the stresses are high, they have chosen to remain in the job, because they want to help us; it’s what they know, it’s their way of being.”

Stone says many celebrations are being planned across Ontario to mark the day. For more information, contact Stone at 289 380-2616 or Klees at 905 750-0019.