Meet Jeff

Jeff's track record reflects his reasons for entering public life in 2011: to advocate for change that benefit Ontarians today and tomorrow; to protect and steward Ontario's assets and provide the conditions necessary to build and sustain a legacy of opportunity for the sake of his daughter and future generations. Jeff is as passionate about advocating for sustainable healthcare that serves the public and creates value for taxpayer dollars. As part of this work, he has petitioned against OHIP fee cuts by the Liberals and Deb Matthews' funding cuts to physiotherapy.

Jeff's commitment to serve his constituents and represent the interests of Elgin-Middlesex-London at Queen's Park is reflected in his day-to-day work. Jeff has introduced a number of petitions to the legislature in an effort to highlight concerns of his constituents.

In the fall of 2013, Jeff introduced Bill 135 also known as Ryan's Law in honour a young student who passed away after suffering an asthma attack while at school. The bill would enable students with asthma to carry their relief inhalers while at school with their physician's approval and require school boards to develop standardized asthma policies. Implementing a province-wide standard would ensure all students with asthma could attend school in an asthma-friendly environment. The bill passed second reading in December 2013 but was sidelined by the current election. Reintroduction of the bill is one of Jeff's first commitments upon re-election.

Since being elected, Jeff has worked closely with local groups on issues that affect his constituents: Jeff has called on the Liberals to address the shortage of doctors in Elgin-Middlesex-London; advocated on behalf of Developmental Services; pushed the government to develop a 12-point action plan to address problems at the Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre and ensure the safety of correctional officers and inmates; he has rallied support at Queen's Park government to rethink the closure of the St. Thomas/Elgin ODSP Office; and advocated for the Drive Clean program to be scrapped.

As co-owner of Yurek Pharmacy and the past president of the St. Thomas Chamber of Commerce, Jeff knows the realities of small businesses face. Fighting to protect the backbone of Ontario's economy as been a big priority for Jeff.

When he's not at Queen's Park, Jeff continues to be involved in his community with his constituency. He has hosted several citizen roundtables and town halls to allow community members to have a say in policy development. His focus on matters affecting the people of Elgin-Middlesex-London have included a campaign to have the government to reverse their decision regarding the Slots at Racetrack Program. Through public town halls and roundtables co-hosted with his colleagues, Jeff has engaged Ontarians on topics such as the Skilled Trades Sector, Wind Turbines, Provincial School Issue Education, Mental Health, the state of social services in Ontario, OHIP coverage, hunting and fishing regulations, and mandatory WSIB coverage for independent contractors.

A pharmacist and partner with his brother in St. Thomas, Jeff followed in his father’s footsteps and enrolled in the Pharmacy Program at the University of Toronto. Upon graduating in 1995 he joined the Yurek Pharmacy which was founded by his father in 1963. He and his siblings worked in the business after school and holidays from an early age stocking shelves and making deliveries. They built on their father's foundation and expanded the business into the home health care sector.

Jeff remains a member of both the Knights of Columbus and Rotary Club and continues to support the Alzheimer’s Society as an advisor.

Coming from southwestern Ontario Jeff understands the importance of fall fairs, community events, and summer festivals. You can find him at community functions often with his wife Jenn and daughter Maggie.