This legislation strengthens the National Sex Offender Registry and the National DNA Data Bank through the following fundamental reforms:
-- automatic inclusion of convicted sex offenders in the registry;-- mandatory DNA sampling for convicted sex offenders;-- proactive use of the registry by police;-- registration of sex offenders convicted abroad;-- notifications to other police jurisdictions when high-risk registered offenders travel;-- operational and administrative amendments to enhance registry operations; and-- amendments to the National Defence Act.
Abolition of Early Parole Act (Bill C-59) (Effective dates: March 23 and March 28, 2011)
This legislation abolishes the current system of Accelerated Parole Review, which allows those convicted of non-violent offences to obtain day parole after serving one-sixth of their sentence and full parole after serving one-third.
Federal Victims Strategy
The objective of the Federal Victims Strategy is to give victims a more effective voice in the criminal justice system. The Department of Justice works in close collaboration with other federal institutions, as well as victims, victim advocates, provincial and territorial governments, service providers and others involved in the criminal justice system. The Department of Justice develops policy and criminal law reform, funds various programs to meet the needs of victims of crime, and shares information about issues of importance to victims of crime.
Within the Federal Victim Strategy, the Victims Fund is a grants and contributions program administered by the Department of Justice. Funds are available each year to fund provinces, territories and non-governmental organizations whose projects, activities and operations support the objectives of the Federal Victims Strategy.
Since 2007, when the Government introduced the Federal Victims Strategy, more than $90 million has been committed to respond to the needs of victims of crime. In Economic Action Plan 2012, the Government committed an additional $5 million over five years for new or enhanced Child Advocacy Centres (CACs), bringing the total Government of Canada commitment to CACs to $10.25 million.
Child Advocacy Centres aim to minimize the trauma of being a child victim of crime. CACs are a collaborative team of professionals who work in a child-friendly setting to help a child or youth victim or witness navigate the criminal justice system. The work of the CAC staff can greatly reduce the emotional and mental harm to the child.
Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime
The Office of the Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime is an independent resource for victims in Canada. The Office was created in 2007 to ensure that the federal government meets its responsibilities regarding victims of crime.
Victims can contact the Office to learn more about their rights under federal law and the services available to them, or to make a complaint about any federal agency or federal legislation dealing with victims of crime. In addition to its direct work with victims, the Office also works to ensure that policy makers and other criminal justice personnel are aware of victims' needs and concerns and to identify important issues and trends that may negatively impact victims. Where appropriate, the Ombudsman may also make recommendations to the federal government.
National Action Plan on Human Trafficking
Canada's National Action Plan is a comprehensive blueprint to guide the Government of Canada's fight against the serious crime of human trafficking. A Human Trafficking Taskforce, led by Public Safety Canada and comprised of key departments, is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Action Plan commitments, coordinating the federal anti-human trafficking response and reporting annually on progress to the public.