RICHARD's desk...: MP Jennifer O’CONNELL proves how valuable she is as our MP

Jennifer O’CONNELL is the MINISTER of PARLIAMENT for our federal riding of Uxbridge-Pickering-Ajax and we should be proud and thankful we have such an MP representing us.

Read what she wrote to the Nuclear Safety Commission in Ottawa when it was arranging a public hearing about the license renewal of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station in Pickering.

The Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission planned a public hearing about the license renewal of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station to be held in Courtice.

Local concern, distant meeting location
Think about it. The majority of people who would be interested in attending this meeting live in Pickering. Courtice is 30 kms away. Public meeting places large enough to accommodate such a meeting group exist in abundance in Pickering from the Pickering public library, to the George Ashe Community Centre, to the Pickering Recreation center just to name a few. And as Ms. O’Connell points out, calendar openings were available for this meeting locally.

It would be very interesting to hear the CNSC’s rational or justification for holding the meeting 25 miles away from the centre of action, the centre of the greatest concern.

Public notification, challenging to find information
Next, Ms. O’Connell’s staff struggled to find the public notifications regarding the meeting, notifications which should have been easily found by anyone interested in attending such an important meeting, of interest to our very large community. We had no idea where to find this information.

Trying to find information about public hearing on the ONT POWER GEN site
Here is what you find when you search the OPG site for public hearings about the Pickering license renewal:

Don’t strain your eyes. The notification area is ALL BLANK, white, empty. The information in the blue sidebar is about their newsletter, The SPARK, mental health and seisimic activity even thought the title of the webpage is PUBLIC HEARING ON PICKERING LICENSE renewal.

This is how your public institutions keep you informed
This is incredibly inept information reporting to the public. The average citizen, no the above average Internet savvy citizen would not be able to find the information easily. Ms. O’C struggled with the challenge also.

Read Ms. O’C’s letter to the CNSC. It makes us proud to see an MP working so diligently and so hard on our behalf. More importantly, Ms. O’C should be commended and praised for the courage she demonstrates in writing such a letter. She is risking putting herself into a battle with the OPG and the CNSC. What courage; what integrity; what dedication to her constituents.

Her letter:  MP O’Connell letter to Cda Nuclear Safety Commission

When was the last time you saw an MP going out of their way to work for their constituents? You can send Ms. O’Connell an email at

Way to go Jennifer !!!




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