Cullen confident Layton will kick cancer

BURNS LAKE – Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen said it was difficult to learn of NDPLeader Jack Layton’s battle with prostate cancer but added he has no doubt Layton will beat the disease.

“Jack’s become a very close friend so of course I’m concerned about him,” said Cullen from Burns Lake, where he is visiting schools and also hosting the fourth in a series of riding-wide economic development meetings.

“Jack told our caucus he’s confident about his treatment.  We all see his incredible energy and spirit at work everyday, no matter what he tackles, and we’re behind him all the way.”

Cullen, who raised $1,200 for prostate cancer along with Sudbury MP Glenn Thibeault in December, said NDP offices across the country are being flooded with calls of support and good wishes for Layton.

Layton announced this morning that he is being treated for prostate cancer.  As with most Canadians, Layton has already faced cancer within his immediate family.  His father made a full recovery from prostate cancer 17 years ago and his wife and fellow MP Oliva Chow was successfully treated for thyroid cancer five years ago.

Layton said he will cut back on his workload during treatment and that his cancer will not affect his ability to serve as either the MP for Toronto Danforth or as leader of the New Democratic Party of Canada.

Layton has served as party leader for seven years.