SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Minister MacKay Holds Roundtable to Discuss Victims Bill of Rights Act

Opportunity to discuss justice-related issues with members of the Saint John legal community

SAINT JOHN, NEW BRUNSWICK -- (Marketwired) -- 06/24/14 -- Justice Canada

Today, Minister of Justice Peter MacKay held a roundtable in Saint John, New Brunswick, to discuss Bill C-32, the Victims Bill of Rights Act, with justice advocates. Minister MacKay was joined at the roundtable by Rodney Weston, M.P. for Saint John.

Bill C-32, the Victims Bill of Rights Act, would improve the experiences of victims of crime across the country by creating, at the federal level, clear rights for victims of crime - a first in Canadian history. The development of this legislation was informed by consultations held on line and in person in every province and territory between April and September 2013. To read the legislation in full or to check on its status as it moves through the parliamentary process, please visit the LEGISinfo website.

Quick Facts


--  The legislation would create the following statutory rights for victims
    of crime:
    --  Right to information: Victims would have the right to general
        information about the criminal justice system and available victim
        services and programs, as well as specific information about the
        progress of the case, including information relating to the
        investigation, prosecution, sentencing, and conditional release of
        the person who harmed them.
    --  Right to protection: Victims would have the right to have their
        security and privacy considered at all stages of the criminal
        justice process, to have reasonable and necessary measures to
        protect them from intimidation and retaliation, and to request their
        identity be protected from public disclosure.
    --  Right to participation: Victims would have the right to convey their
        views about decisions to be made by criminal justice professionals
        and have them considered at various stages of the criminal justice
        process, as well as the right to present a victim impact statement.
    --  Right to restitution: Victims would have the right to have the court
        consider making a restitution order for all offences for which there
        are easy-to-calculate financial losses.
--  The Government will provide dedicated funding to support the
    implementation of the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights through existing
    resources as well as the allocation of new federal resources.
--  By introducing Bill C-32, the Victims Bill of Rights Act, the Government
    is delivering on its commitment from the 2013 Speech from the Throne, a
    commitment that was restated and reinforced in Budget 2014.
--  This legislation is also in line with the Government's Plan for Safe
    Streets and Communities, which focuses on holding violent offenders
    accountable, enhancing the rights of victims, and increasing the
    efficiency of our justice system.

Quotes

"Our Government is committed to keeping our streets and communities safe and to ensuring that those who are victimized are treated with the courtesy, compassion, and respect they deserve by our criminal justice system. By proposing statutory rights at the federal level, we have taken a historic step. I am pleased to be here today to exchange with justice advocates and to continue our collaboration to ensure that the voices of victims are heard."

Minister Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

"This is a great opportunity for members of the legal community in the Saint-John area to share their ideas about how we can continue improving the experiences of victims of crime as they navigate the criminal justice system. We need to work together to ensure that victims have access to the information and services they need to feel confident in our justice system."

MP Rodney Weston

Related Products

- Backgrounder: Overview of the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights

- Backgrounder: Right to information

- Backgrounder: Right to protection

- Backgrounder: Right to participation

- Backgrounder: Right to restitution

- Backgrounder: Victim surcharge

Associated Links

- Parliament of Canada LegisInfo

Follow Department of Justice Canada on Twitter (@JusticeCanadaEn), join us on Facebook or visit our YouTube channel.

Contacts:
Paloma Aguilar
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Justice
613-992-4621

Media Relations Office
Department of Justice
613-957-4207

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