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His Excellency the Governor General recommends to the House of Commons the appropriation of public revenue under the circumstances, in the manner and for the purposes set out in a measure entitled “An Act to enact the Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act and to amend the State Immunity Act, the Criminal Code, the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, the Youth Criminal Justice Act, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and other Acts”.
Part 1 of this enactment creates, in order to deter terrorism, a cause of action that allows victims of terrorism to sue perpetrators of terrorism and their supporters. It also amends the State Immunity Act to prevent a listed foreign state from claiming immunity from the jurisdiction of Canadian courts in respect of actions that relate to its support of terrorism.
Part 2 amends the Criminal Code to
(a) increase or impose mandatory minimum penalties, and increase maximum penalties, for certain sexual offences with respect to children;
(b) create offences of making sexually explicit material available to a child and of agreeing or arranging to commit a sexual offence against a child;
(c) expand the list of specified conditions that may be added to prohibition and recognizance orders to include prohibitions concerning contact with a person under the age of 16 and use of the Internet or any other digital network;
(d) expand the list of enumerated offences that may give rise to such orders and prohibitions; and
(e) eliminate the reference, in section 742.1, to serious personal injury offences and to restrict the availability of conditional sentences for all offences for which the maximum term of imprisonment is 14 years or life and for specified offences, prosecuted by way of indictment, for which the maximum term of imprisonment is 10 years.
It also amends the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act to provide for minimum penalties for serious drug offences, to increase the maximum penalty for cannabis (marijuana) production and to reschedule certain substances from Schedule III to that Act to Schedule I.
Part 3 amends the Corrections and Conditional Release Act to
(a) clarify that the protection of society is the paramount consideration for the Correctional Service of Canada in the corrections process and for the National Parole Board and the provincial parole boards in the determination of all cases;
(b) establish the right of a victim to make a statement at parole hearings and permit the disclosure to a victim of certain information about the offender;
(c) provide for the automatic suspension of the parole or statutory release of offenders who receive a new custodial sentence and require the National Parole Board to review their case within a prescribed period; and
(d) rename the National Parole Board as the Parole Board of Canada.
It also amends the Criminal Records Act to substitute the term “record suspension” for the term “pardon”. It extends the ineligibility periods for applications for a record suspension and makes certain offences ineligible for a record suspension. It also requires the National Parole Board to submit an annual report that includes the number of applications for record suspensions and the number of record suspensions ordered.
Lastly, it amends the International Transfer of Offenders Act to provide that one of the purposes of that Act is to enhance public safety and to modify the list of factors that the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness may consider in deciding whether to consent to the transfer of a Canadian offender.
Part 4 amends the sentencing and general principles of the Youth Criminal Justice Act, as well as its provisions relating to judicial interim release, adult and youth sentences, publication bans, and placement in youth custody facilities. It defines the terms “violent offence” and “serious offence”, amends the definition “serious violent offence” and repeals the definition “presumptive offence”. It also requires police forces to keep records of extrajudicial measures used to deal with young persons.
Part 5 amends the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act to allow officers to refuse to authorize foreign nationals to work in Canada in cases where to give authorization would be contrary to public policy considerations that are specified in instructions given by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.
The enactment also makes related and consequential amendments to other Acts.
Also available on the Parliament of Canada Web Site at the following address: