Member Statement – National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week
Ms. Chartier: — Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This week, April 22nd to 28th, is National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week. Across Canada people are raising awareness about the critical need for more donors. Approximately 4,500 Canadians are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant, and the sad reality is that on average 250 Canadians die each year waiting for one. In 2015 Saskatchewan had the lowest rates among provinces for organ donation from deceased donors. We heard yesterday that the government has created half of one donation physician position and a public awareness campaign — a welcome start, but there’s still so much the government should be doing to raise donation rates here. One family that is doing its part when it comes to supporting organ and tissue donation is the Harris family. This will be the fifth year for a fundraiser they founded called Shoot for the Vitals. It’s a 3-D archery shoot happening June 23rd and 24th to support members of the Shellbrook and Prince Albert communities who have gone through or are going through donation. This issue hits close to home for them, as the Harrises have lost three family members who required organ and tissue donations, and they know too well the pain and hardships that families go through during this time. Their hope is that their event raises awareness around organ and tissue donation, breaks down stigma, and provides support to those who need it. Over the years they have raised over $6,000 for community members. I ask all members to join me in thanking the Harris family on their leadership and commitment when it comes to organ and tissue donation. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.