Brant MP reacts to Ottawa shooting

News Oct 22, 2014 by Natalie Paddon Brant News

Phil McColeman's wife believes a guardian angel may have been looking out for him on Wednesday.

Minutes before leaving his Ottawa apartment to head to Parliament Hill, the Brant MP received a phone call around 10 a.m., informing him of the grave events transpiring that resulted in the shooting death of a Canadian Forces soldier at the National War Memorial.

Typically McColeman would have been in a caucus room at that time where members of parliament were barricaded after a shooter allegedly fired multiple gunshots in the hallway outside its doors.

But a busy morning led to the rare occasion of McColeman not making the weekly meeting on time.

“I don't know if anybody could've ever imagined these things happening to our country,” McColeman said on the phone from Ottawa. “It's a day that changes many people's thinking – it can happen right here.”

As of Wednesday at 4 p.m., Ottawa remained in lockdown with a day-long blockade and manhunt underway, triggered by the shooting of Hamilton-based reservist Cpl. Nathan Cirillo. The search continues for other gunmen in the downtown core.

Ottawa police confirmed they received a call at 9:52 a.m. reporting shots being fired.

A witness reported that a man drove up in a black vehicle, got out carrying a rifle and ran into the Centre Block – the seat of the House of Commons under the Peace Tower.

According to witnesses, shots were fired in several different corridors inside the Centre Block.

While McColeman is thankful he got the call when he did, he said, in a way, he wishes he could have been with his colleagues throughout the day's events.

“The immediate shock and reaction of my colleagues are important to me,” he said. “We share a lot together in this life up here as MPs...I felt like I really needed to be with my colleagues, so I've connected with them through the ability to text back and forth through this.”

Speaking to fellow MP Dean Allison who represents Niagara West-Glanbrook, McColeman said he was told gunshots were fired in the Hall of Honour, near the caucus room where Wednesday's meeting took place. The door was barricaded and the prime minister was evacuated, McColeman said.

“Really what the issue is is what this means to our country really, what a day like this really means upon reflection,” said McColeman.

The incident comes only days after two Canadians soldiers were run over – one of them killed – in Quebec by a man who authorities described as radicalized.

Moving forward, McColeman said there's an immediate need for an increased level of security to protect Canadian citizens, but fear can't dictate everything.

“We need to stand tall, go about our lives as we would and not be handcuffed by any of the fear factor,” he said.

At the same time, McColeman said it's important for the public to remain vigilant to ensure safety for all Canadian citizens.

“This is a moment I think of reflection for us as Canadians to really reflect on the fact that we have to be diligent in the world to make sure that these forces are eliminated.”

McColeman said he spoke with Brantford's incumbent mayor Chris Friel who said he would be meeting with the city's police service to review whether any measures should be taken.

Inline with other members of parliament across the country, McColeman closed his Brant constituency office today around noon as a security precaution.

A media release from Brantford Police Chief Geoff Nelson issued just after 5 p.m. on Wednesday said there are no imminent threats to public safety in Brantford. The Brantford Police Service remains in constant communication with provincial and federal counterparts, the release said.

Brant MP reacts to Ottawa shooting

News Oct 22, 2014 by Natalie Paddon Brant News

Phil McColeman's wife believes a guardian angel may have been looking out for him on Wednesday.

Minutes before leaving his Ottawa apartment to head to Parliament Hill, the Brant MP received a phone call around 10 a.m., informing him of the grave events transpiring that resulted in the shooting death of a Canadian Forces soldier at the National War Memorial.

Typically McColeman would have been in a caucus room at that time where members of parliament were barricaded after a shooter allegedly fired multiple gunshots in the hallway outside its doors.

But a busy morning led to the rare occasion of McColeman not making the weekly meeting on time.

“I don't know if anybody could've ever imagined these things happening to our country,” McColeman said on the phone from Ottawa. “It's a day that changes many people's thinking – it can happen right here.”

As of Wednesday at 4 p.m., Ottawa remained in lockdown with a day-long blockade and manhunt underway, triggered by the shooting of Hamilton-based reservist Cpl. Nathan Cirillo. The search continues for other gunmen in the downtown core.

Ottawa police confirmed they received a call at 9:52 a.m. reporting shots being fired.

A witness reported that a man drove up in a black vehicle, got out carrying a rifle and ran into the Centre Block – the seat of the House of Commons under the Peace Tower.

According to witnesses, shots were fired in several different corridors inside the Centre Block.

While McColeman is thankful he got the call when he did, he said, in a way, he wishes he could have been with his colleagues throughout the day's events.

“The immediate shock and reaction of my colleagues are important to me,” he said. “We share a lot together in this life up here as MPs...I felt like I really needed to be with my colleagues, so I've connected with them through the ability to text back and forth through this.”

Speaking to fellow MP Dean Allison who represents Niagara West-Glanbrook, McColeman said he was told gunshots were fired in the Hall of Honour, near the caucus room where Wednesday's meeting took place. The door was barricaded and the prime minister was evacuated, McColeman said.

“Really what the issue is is what this means to our country really, what a day like this really means upon reflection,” said McColeman.

The incident comes only days after two Canadians soldiers were run over – one of them killed – in Quebec by a man who authorities described as radicalized.

Moving forward, McColeman said there's an immediate need for an increased level of security to protect Canadian citizens, but fear can't dictate everything.

“We need to stand tall, go about our lives as we would and not be handcuffed by any of the fear factor,” he said.

At the same time, McColeman said it's important for the public to remain vigilant to ensure safety for all Canadian citizens.

“This is a moment I think of reflection for us as Canadians to really reflect on the fact that we have to be diligent in the world to make sure that these forces are eliminated.”

McColeman said he spoke with Brantford's incumbent mayor Chris Friel who said he would be meeting with the city's police service to review whether any measures should be taken.

Inline with other members of parliament across the country, McColeman closed his Brant constituency office today around noon as a security precaution.

A media release from Brantford Police Chief Geoff Nelson issued just after 5 p.m. on Wednesday said there are no imminent threats to public safety in Brantford. The Brantford Police Service remains in constant communication with provincial and federal counterparts, the release said.

Brant MP reacts to Ottawa shooting

News Oct 22, 2014 by Natalie Paddon Brant News

Phil McColeman's wife believes a guardian angel may have been looking out for him on Wednesday.

Minutes before leaving his Ottawa apartment to head to Parliament Hill, the Brant MP received a phone call around 10 a.m., informing him of the grave events transpiring that resulted in the shooting death of a Canadian Forces soldier at the National War Memorial.

Typically McColeman would have been in a caucus room at that time where members of parliament were barricaded after a shooter allegedly fired multiple gunshots in the hallway outside its doors.

But a busy morning led to the rare occasion of McColeman not making the weekly meeting on time.

“I don't know if anybody could've ever imagined these things happening to our country,” McColeman said on the phone from Ottawa. “It's a day that changes many people's thinking – it can happen right here.”

As of Wednesday at 4 p.m., Ottawa remained in lockdown with a day-long blockade and manhunt underway, triggered by the shooting of Hamilton-based reservist Cpl. Nathan Cirillo. The search continues for other gunmen in the downtown core.

Ottawa police confirmed they received a call at 9:52 a.m. reporting shots being fired.

A witness reported that a man drove up in a black vehicle, got out carrying a rifle and ran into the Centre Block – the seat of the House of Commons under the Peace Tower.

According to witnesses, shots were fired in several different corridors inside the Centre Block.

While McColeman is thankful he got the call when he did, he said, in a way, he wishes he could have been with his colleagues throughout the day's events.

“The immediate shock and reaction of my colleagues are important to me,” he said. “We share a lot together in this life up here as MPs...I felt like I really needed to be with my colleagues, so I've connected with them through the ability to text back and forth through this.”

Speaking to fellow MP Dean Allison who represents Niagara West-Glanbrook, McColeman said he was told gunshots were fired in the Hall of Honour, near the caucus room where Wednesday's meeting took place. The door was barricaded and the prime minister was evacuated, McColeman said.

“Really what the issue is is what this means to our country really, what a day like this really means upon reflection,” said McColeman.

The incident comes only days after two Canadians soldiers were run over – one of them killed – in Quebec by a man who authorities described as radicalized.

Moving forward, McColeman said there's an immediate need for an increased level of security to protect Canadian citizens, but fear can't dictate everything.

“We need to stand tall, go about our lives as we would and not be handcuffed by any of the fear factor,” he said.

At the same time, McColeman said it's important for the public to remain vigilant to ensure safety for all Canadian citizens.

“This is a moment I think of reflection for us as Canadians to really reflect on the fact that we have to be diligent in the world to make sure that these forces are eliminated.”

McColeman said he spoke with Brantford's incumbent mayor Chris Friel who said he would be meeting with the city's police service to review whether any measures should be taken.

Inline with other members of parliament across the country, McColeman closed his Brant constituency office today around noon as a security precaution.

A media release from Brantford Police Chief Geoff Nelson issued just after 5 p.m. on Wednesday said there are no imminent threats to public safety in Brantford. The Brantford Police Service remains in constant communication with provincial and federal counterparts, the release said.