GAS AND DASH: THE NEED FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION NOW
MPP Anand’s forty-first Members’ Statement was on the topic of the “Gas and Dash: The Need for Immediate Action”, delivered on 2 June 2021.
Speaker, last week, my heart ached at reading the newspaper headline – “66 year-old senselessly killed during gas-and-dash theft in Woodstock”. Stephen Madigan was a 66-year old loving father, grandfather, and an outstanding citizen. Should the incident have happened in B.C or Alberta, Mr. Speaker, this manslaughter could have been avoided.
These provinces have gone ahead and made the pre-payment of gas mandatory and have since then, seen practically ZERO cases of gas and dash thefts.
My Bill, 231 passed with unanimous consent in the House, and entered into the committee phase is advocating to make pre-payment of gas mandatory so we can avoid similar tragedies going forward.
Since my last statement, we have reached out to, and are receiving letters of support from the Police Services, the PAO (Police Association of Ontario), and the Police Services Boards. We already have the support of the retailers big and small, including Rabba Fine Foods, the Ontario Convenience Stores Association, Hasty Market, 7-Eleven Canada, and more.
This incident unfortunately shows us that this issue is not just an urban issue. It is an issue that affects ALL Ontarians. I would like to thank all my colleagues for their support. Let me repeat – the death of Stephen Madigan was completely avoidable. There is a unanimous belief that this Bill is important for all of the stakeholders mentioned.
The time for action is now. I implore all my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to keep working together to ensure bring safety and security for our fellow Ontarians. Let’s make pre-payment a reality and say goodbye to such headlines forever.