About Paul Dewar
Since his first election in 2006, Paul has worked tirelessly for our priorities. He reaches out to the community on a regular basis to find solutions for the challenges facing Ottawa Centre.
He has led successful campaigns on preserving the Ottawa River, protecting Gatineau Park and improving transit in Ottawa. By advocating our community’s ideas for a better and stronger economy, Paul secured much-needed funding for many projects across Ottawa Centre. He has been a voice for the community’s progressive values on human rights and women's rights. He has been committed to fairness for new Canadians, opposed cuts to immigrant settlement programs and proposed legislation on foreign credentials recognition.
On numerous occasions Paul has brought the community together to develop policy solutions which he has taken to Parliament. His successful Cycling Summit mobilized the community and led to the introduction of legislation in support of dedicated federal funds for cycling and pedestrian infrastructure. His Arts Summit gave birth to an all-party parliamentary Arts Caucus. He sought the advice of the community in the redevelopment of LeBreton Flats by the NCC. And at the outset of the recession, he brought the community together to draft a blueprint for a new economy that is fair and green. When former Nortel employees battled for their pension and long-term disability rights, Paul took their concerns to parliament and worked in support of legislation that would protect workers’ pension against company bankruptcies.
Paul has been an outspoken defender of our public service employees. He has warned that the Harper government’s treatment of public service employees has contributed to low morale and high rates of depression-related sick leaves. He has been a critic of the government’s increasing reliance on temporary workers, instead of hiring full-time staff. He is the only MP in our region to have spoken out against the fire-sale of public assets in our region.
Paul has proposed over 20 pieces of legislation in Parliament. Thanks to his persistent work, four of these ideas were adopted by the government: phasing out inefficient light-bulbs in order to cut back on carbon emissions, banning the toxin Bisphenol A in order to protect children’s health, protecting Gatineau Park, and bringing transparency to the operations of the National Capital Commission.
As the New Democrat Foreign Affairs Critic, Paul Dewar has been a leading voice for peace in Afghanistan, the rights of Canadian citizens abroad, nuclear disarmament, peace in the Middle East and women’s meaningful engagement in peace building. Paul has pressured the government to meet its commitments to the global community including our commitments on aid and peacekeeping. He has worked on improving corporate social responsibility to ensure that Canadian companies abroad are held to the same environmental, human rights and labour standards as they are in Canada. He has been a strong advocate of Canada's responsibility to fight climate change. He has held the government to account on the treatment of detainees, cuts to Canadian NGOs and the government's meddling in the respected Canadian organization Rights and Democracy.
On March 9, 2011 Paul Dewar celebrated a major victory in Parliament: the passage of New Democrats’ “Medicine for All” bill, C-393. The legislation removes the red tape on the way of exporting Canadian generic drugs to the developing world. It will make life-saving medicine accessible to the world’s poorest countries.
The final push for in the campaign for C-393 was bolstered by K’naan, Stephen Lewis, James Orbinski and Fanta Ongoiba. In less than a week, 42,000 Canadians signed petitions in support of the bill. And in the end, despite all the negative lobbying by big pharma, the bill was adopted with the support of MPs from all parties in the House.
Paul lives in Old Ottawa East with his wife, Julia Sneyd, and their two children – Nathaniel, 15, and Jordan, 12.
What they’re saying about Paul:
"Dewar is proof that being a Member of Parliament is still a job worth doing." Ottawa Citizen, January 2011
"Front and centre on the big issues" one of "Five MPs to Watch." Globe and Mail, December 2010
"Invests considerable energy making himself available at the community level." Ottawa Citizen, March 2010
"A notable example in a party of insistent, eager parliamentarians." Maclean’s, August 2009
"Punches above his weight." Ottawa Citizen, August 2009
"At this low moment in our political life, Dewar reminds us what public affairs should be all about." Globe and Mail, June 2009
"Pick almost any important local issue, especially one with national overtones, and it won't be hard to figure out where Ottawa Centre MP Paul Dewar stands. From the location of the National Portrait Gallery to the Ottawa River or Lebreton Flats, Dewar has been a vocal, powerful member in the House of Commons on local issues." Ottawa Sun, September 2008
"Effective in raising a wide range of concerns... Unlike most of our area MPs, he has been front and centre on issues that matter to people here. Better access to doctors, more protection for Gatineau Park, a new approach on the Ottawa River and a reduction of temporary workers in the public service top his list." Ottawa Citizen, September 2008