Dr. Lunney was aboard the frigate taking part in the Canadian Forces Parliamentary Program, where MPs and Senators are embedded with their choice of Navy, Army or Air Force units, most often during major exercises. A key aspect of the program is that they be given the opportunity to experience the “real” CF through hands-on experience; not as VIPs but as ordinary Canadians.
His first time aboard a Canadian warship, Dr. Lunney spent five days in Calgary as the ship was conducting fleet navigation officers’ training off the coast of British Columbia. Despite some initial challenges – stepping over the anchor cable and enduring a high speed encounter between his head and the top of the rack above – he quickly settled into shipboard routine.
To be clear, Opposition MPs did participate in this year's program. However, it still looks a little like Con propaganda to have the action story of their MP front and centre on the DND website. Indeed it seems to be a bit of a trend, given the earlier Nijmegen coverage with our discomfortably happy defence minister.