OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 05/21/13 -- The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today announced the Government's support for Private Member's Bill C-489 (restrictions on offenders), An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Corrections and Conditional Release Act. Sponsored by Mark Warawa, M.P. for Langley, this legislation would impose restrictions on offenders who are conditionally released.
"The Government's support for this Bill demonstrates our commitment to standing up for victims and keeping our streets and communities safe," said Minister Nicholson. "I am pleased to support my colleague Mark Warawa in his efforts to protect victims from being further traumatized by contact with their offenders after they are released."
Bill C-489 proposes that child sexual offenders be prohibited from coming within two kilometres of a victim's dwelling, and requires that other criminal offenders subject to parole, probation, conditional sentences and child sex offender peace bonds be under strict conditions not to contact their victims, unless the victim consents or there are exceptional circumstances present.
"In my riding of Langley, two brave families lived in constant fear when the sex offender of their child was permitted to serve house arrest in their neighbourhood," said Mr. Warawa. "In one case, the offender served his sentence right across the street from his young victim, and in the other case, next door to his victim. This legislation will ensure greater peace and security to young victims of crime."
The Government's support for the proposed legislation, with some amendments to ensure clarity and consistency with existing law, is in keeping with the Government's Plan for Safe Streets and Communities, one of four priorities identified recently by the Prime Minister. This plan focuses on holding violent criminals accountable, enhancing the rights of victims, and increasing the efficiency of our justice system.
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Key Accomplishments in Keeping Canadians Safe: Restricting Release for Offenders
The Government of Canada has made significant accomplishments in protecting the public from offenders by restricting their release and imposing measures to hold criminals accountable.
Restrictions on Release of Offenders
The Ending House Arrest for Property and Other Serious Crimes component of the Safe Streets and Communities Act (Bill C-10) (Effective date: November 20, 2012)
These amendments restricted the use of conditional sentences, including house arrest. A conditional sentence is a sentence of imprisonment that may be served in the community, provided certain conditions are met. The amendments provided an expanded and clear list of offences for which conditional sentences are not available.
The Protecting Children from Sexual Predators component of the Safe Streets and Communities Act (Bill C-10) (Effective date: August 9, 2012)
This legislation amended the Criminal Code to better protect children from sexual predators by ensuring that the penalties imposed for sexual offences against children are consistent and better reflect the heinous nature of these acts. It prevents the commission of child sexual offences by creating two new offences, and introduces two new conditions to prohibit conduct that could facilitate the sexual abuse of a child.
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