Seamus O'Regan and Ginette Petitpas Taylor are elevated to cabinet for the first time
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau shuffled his cabinet Monday moving some ministers into new positions and promoting or elevating others from minor positions or from outside cabinet altogether.
Among the biggest changes announced was the decision to divide the Ministry of Indigenous and Northern Affairs into two new departments. The former minister of that department, Carolyn Bennett, now becomes minister of Crown-Indigenous relations and northern affairs, while Jane Philpott leaves the federal Health portfolio to become minister of Indigenous services.
Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott is sworn in during a ceremony at Rideau Hall. (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press)
The MP from Markham-Stouffville, Philpott was first elected to the House of Commons in 2015. A medical doctor with experience in family medicine, Philpott — the former health minister — and Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould helped shepherd through the assisted dying legislation last year.
Carolyn Bennett is sworn in as minister of Crown-Indigenous relations and northern affairs. (Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press)
Bennett was first elected to the House of Commons in 1997. Formerly a family doctor, Bennett was appointed the minister of state for public health in 2003. She also served as the critic for public health, seniors and persons with disabilities.
Kent Hehr arrives at Rideau Hall where he will move from Veterans Affairs to the Sport and Persons with Disabilities portfolio. (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press)
Kent Hehr leaves Veterans Affairs to become minister of sport and persons with disabilities.
Hehr served in the Legislative Assembly of Alberta for more than seven years in the provincial riding of Calgary Centre. He was first elected to the House of Commons in 2015. Hehr was paralyzed in in a drive-by shooting just before he turned 22. While in Edmonton, Hehr, a lawyer, served as the shadow minister for justice, finance and education among other portfolios.
Carla Qualtrough vacates Sport and Persons with Disabilities to take over from the retiring Judy Foote as minister of public services and procurement.
Qualtrough is a former Paralympic swimmer who won three bronze medals in swimming at the 1988 and the 1992 Paralympic Games. The visually impaired Qualtrough also won four World Championship medals in swimming. A lawyer, she has served as the president of the Canadian Paralympic Committee and received a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.
Ginette Petitpas Taylor, formerly parliamentary secretary to the minister of finance, becomes health minister.
Petitpas Taylor, also a former deputy government whip, is the MP from Moncton–Riverview–Dieppe. She has served on a number of parliamentary committees during her time in Parliament. Before entering politics, Petitpas Taylor was a victim services coordinator for the RCMP and a member if the City of Moncton's Public Safety Advisory Committee.
Newfoundland and Labrador MP Seamus O'Regan joins cabinet as veterans affairs minister.
For ten years O'Regan was the co-host of CTV's Canada AM. He first won his seat in the riding of St. John's South–Mount Pearl during the 2015 federal election. In January of 2016, O'Regan announced he was stepping away from his responsibilities as an MP so he could enter a "wellness program" to adopt an "alcohol-free lifestyle," returning to work later that month.