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MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS
 
Meeting No. 14
 
Thursday, February 14, 2008
 

The Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights met at 3:30 p.m. this day, in Room 371, West Block, the Chair, Art Hanger, presiding.

 

Members of the Committee present: Hon. Larry Bagnell, Blaine Calkins, Joe Comartin, Rick Dykstra, Carole Freeman, Art Hanger, Hon. Dominic LeBlanc, Derek Lee, Réal Ménard, Rob Moore, Brian Murphy and Daniel Petit.

 

Acting Members present: Guy André for Carole Freeman, Rodger Cuzner for Derek Lee and Lloyd St. Amand for Brian Murphy.

 

In attendance: Library of Parliament: Robin MacKay, Analyst; Dominique Valiquet, Analyst. House of Commons: Mike MacPherson, Legislative Clerk; Erica Pereira, Committee Clerk.

 

Witnesses: Mark Holland, M.P., Ajax—Pickering. World Society for the Protection of Animals (Canada): Melissa Tkachyk, Programs Officer. Department of Justice: Karen Markham, Counsel, Criminal Law Policy Section.

 
Pursuant to the Order of Reference of Friday, November 30, 2007, the Committee resumed consideration of Bill S-203, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (cruelty to animals).
 

The witnesses made statements and answered questions.

 

At 4:17 p.m., the sitting was suspended.

At 4:20 p.m., the sitting resumed.

 

The Committee commenced its clause-by-clause study of the Bill.

 

On Clause 1,

Joe Comartin moved, — That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing from line 4 on page 1 to line 6 on page 5 with the following:

“1. The heading before section 444 and sections 444 to 447 of the Criminal Code are replaced by the following:

Cruelty to Animals

444. In sections 444 to 447.3, “animal” means a vertebrate, other than a human being.

445. (1) Every one commits an offence who, wilfully or recklessly,

(a) causes or, being the owner, permits to be caused unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal;

(b) kills an animal or, being the owner, permits an animal to be killed with brutal or vicious intent regardless of whether the animal dies immediately;

(c) kills an animal without lawful excuse;

(d) without lawful excuse, poisons an animal, places poison in such a position that it may easily be consumed by an animal, administers an injurious drug or substance to an animal or, being the owner, permits anyone to do any of those things;

(e) in any manner encourages, promotes, arranges, assists in or receives money for the fighting or baiting of animals, including training an animal to fight another animal;

(f) makes, maintains, keeps or allows to be made, maintained or kept a cockpit or any other arena for the fighting of animals on premises that he or she owns or occupies;

(g) promotes, arranges, conducts, assists in, receives money for or takes part in any meeting, competition, exhibition, pastime, practice, display or event at or in the course of which captive animals are liberated by hand, trap, contrivance or any other means for the purpose of being shot at the moment they are liberated; or

(h) being the owner, occupier or person in charge of any premises, permits the premises or any part of the premises to be used in the course of an activity referred to in paragraph (e) or (g).

(2) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars or imprisonment for a term of not more than eighteen months or to both.

446. (1) Every one commits an offence who

(a) negligently causes unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal;

(b) being the owner, or the person having the custody or control of an animal, wilfully or recklessly abandons it or negligently fails to provide suitable and adequate food, water, air, shelter and care for it; or

(c) negligently injures an animal while it is being conveyed.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), “negligently” means departing markedly from the standard of care that a reasonable person would use.

(3) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars or imprisonment for a term of not more than six months, or to both.

447. (1) The court may, in addition to any other sentence that it may impose under subsection 445(2) or 446(3),

(a) make an order prohibiting the accused from owning, having the custody or control of or residing in the same premises as an animal for any period that the court considers appropriate, and in the case of a second or subsequent offence, for a minimum of five years; and

(b) on application of the Attorney General or on its own motion, order that the accused pay to a person or an organization that has taken care of an animal as a result of the commission of the offence the reasonable costs that the person or organization incurred in respect of the animal, if the costs are readily ascertainable.

(2) Every one who contravenes an order made under paragraph (1)(a) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

(3) Sections 740 to 741.2 apply, with any modifications that the circumstances require, to orders made under paragraph (1)(b).

447.1 For greater certainty, the defences set out in subsection 429(2) apply, to the extent that they are relevant, in respect of proceedings for an offence under sections 444 to 447.3.

447.2 For greater certainty, nothing in sections 444 to 447.3 shall be construed so as to abrogate or derogate from the protection provided for existing aboriginal or treaty rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada by the recognition and affirmation of those rights in section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982.

447.3 (1) In this section, “law enforcement animal” means a dog, a horse or any other animal used by a peace officer or public officer in the execution of their duties.

(2) Every one commits an offence who wilfully or recklessly poisons, injures or kills a law enforcement animal while it is aiding or assisting a peace officer or public officer engaged in the execution of their duties or a person acting in aid of such an officer.

(3) Every one who commits an offence under subsection (2) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than five years; or

(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than eighteen months, or to both.

(4) The court may, in addition to any other sentence that it may impose under subsection (3), order the accused to pay all reasonable costs associated with the loss of or injury to the law enforcement animal as a result of the commission of the offence, if the costs are readily ascertainable.”

Debate arose thereon.

 

At 4:30 p.m., Réal Ménard took the Chair.

 

At 4:35 p.m., Art Hanger took the Chair.

 

The question was put on the amendment of Joe Comartin and it was negatived on the following recorded division: YEAS: Guy André, Joe Comartin, Réal Ménard — 3; NAYS: Larry Bagnell, Blaine Calkins, Rodger Cuzner, Dominic LeBlanc, Rob Moore, Daniel Petit, Lloyd St. Amand — 7.

 
Réal Ménard moved, — That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by adding after line 6 on page 5 the following:

“447.2 For the purposes of sections 444 to 447.1, “animal” means any vertebrate, with the exception of human beings and cattle.”

 

The question was put on the amendment of Réal Ménard and it was negatived on the following recorded division: YEAS: Guy André, Joe Comartin, Réal Ménard — 3; NAYS: Larry Bagnell, Blaine Calkins, Rodger Cuzner, Rick Dykstra, Dominic LeBlanc, Rob Moore, Daniel Petit, Lloyd St. Amand — 8.

 

The Chair ruled that the following thirteen (13) amendments were consequential to the previous amendment and therefore they were also negatived:

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 25 and 26 on page 1 with the following:

“injures an animal kept for a lawful purpose;”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 29 and 30 on page 1 with the following:

“may easily be consumed by an animal kept for”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 15 and 16 on page 2 with the following:

“pain, suffering or injury to an animal;”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 18 and 19 on page 2 with the following:

“assists at the fighting or baiting of animals;”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 21 to 25 on page 2 with the following:

“an animal wild by nature that is kept in captivity or, being the owner of such an animal,”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 33 on page 2 with the following:

“course of which captive animals are”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 9 on page 3 with the following:

“supervision of an animal thereby”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 18 on page 3 with the following:

“animals is, in the absence of any”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 25 on page 3 with the following:

“injury to an animal while it is”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 29 on page 3 with the following:

“animal or an animal”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 4 on page 4 with the following:

“supervision of an animal thereby”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 36 on page 4 with the following:

“animal during any period that the”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended

(a) by replacing line 43 on page 4 with the following:

“taken care of an animal as a result”

(b) by replacing, in the English version, line 47 on page 4 with the following:

“animal, if the costs are readily”

 
Réal Ménard moved, — That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 24 on page 3 with the following:

“(a) by negligent behaviour that is a marked departure from the behaviour an individual would normally adopt causes damage or”

 

The question was put on the amendment of Réal Ménard and it was negatived, by a show of hands: YEAS: 3; NAYS: 8.

 

By unanimous consent, it was agreed, — That the result of the vote on the previous amendment be applied to the following four (4) amendments which are therefore also negatived:

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 25 and 26 on page 3 with the following:

“injury to an animal; or”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing line 7 on page 4 with the following:

“the damage or injury was caused by”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 12 and 13 on page 4 with the following:

“occupies, allows a cockpit to be built, made, maintained or kept on such premises, or trains cocks for cockfighting.”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 38 and 39 on page 4 with the following:

“of a second or subsequent offence, for life; and”

 
Joe Comartin moved, — That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 26 to 31 on page 1 with the following:

“cattle; or

(b) places poison in such a position that it may easily be consumed by dogs, birds or animals that are not cattle.”

 

After debate, the question was put on the amendment of Joe Comartin and it was negatived, by a show of hands: YEAS: 3; NAYS: 7.

 

By unanimous consent, it was agreed, — That the result of the vote on the previous amendment be applied to the following two (2) amendments which are therefore also negatived:

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 17 to 19 on page 2 with the following:

“(b) in any manner attends, encourages, promotes, arranges, assists in, or receives money for the fighting or baiting of animals or birds, including keeping or managing premises for the purpose of fighting of animals or training an animal to fight another animal;”

That Bill S-203, in Clause 1, be amended by replacing lines 24 to 33 on page 3 with the following:

“(a) negligently causes unnecessary pain, suffering or injury to an animal;

(b) being the owner or the person having the custody or control of an animal, wilfully or recklessly abandons it or negligently fails to provide suitable and adequate food, water, air, shelter and care for it; or

(c) negligently injures an animal while it is being conveyed.”

 

Clause 1 carried on the following recorded division: YEAS: Guy André, Larry Bagnell, Blaine Calkins, Rodger Cuzner, Rick Dykstra, Dominic LeBlanc, Réal Ménard, Rob Moore, Daniel Petit, Lloyd St. Amand — 10; NAYS: Joe Comartin — 1.

 

The Title carried on division.

 

The Bill carried on division.

 

ORDERED, — That the Chair report the Bill to the House.

 
At 5:10 p.m., the Committee proceeded in camera.
 

The Committee proceeded to the consideration of matters to related to Committee business.

 

The Chair presented the Third Report from the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure which read as follows:

That on February 26, 2008, the Committee meeting be cancelled due to the Budget presentation and that all witnesses scheduled for that day be rescheduled for February 28, 2008.

On Bill C-31:

That the Minister of Justice and senior officials be invited to appear on March 4, 2008, and that the Committee proceed to clause-by-clause consideration following the Minister’s appearance the same day.

On the Study on Impaired Driving:

That Department of Justice officials including, Mr. Greg Yost, be invited to appear on February 28, 2008;

That on March 6, 2008, the Committee begin consideration of a draft report.

On Bill C-426:

That the Committee consider Bill C-426, An Act to amend the Canada Evidence Act (protection of journalistic sources and search warrants) on Wednesday, March 5, 2008, at 3:30 p.m.

That Serge Ménard, M.P., be invited to appear, and that other witnesses (to be determined) be invited to appear.

That the Committee proceed to clause-by-clause consideration on March 5, 2008, or on March 6, 2008, if necessary.

On Bill C-27:

That the Committee begin hearings on Bill C-27, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (identity theft and related misconduct) on March 11, 2008.

That the Committee hold hearings on Bill C-27 on March 11 and 13 and April 1 and 3, 2008.

That the Minister of Justice and senior officials be invited to appear on March 11, 2008.

That the following witnesses be invited to appear :

- Canadian Bar Association

- Barreau du Québec

- Privacy Commissioner of Canada

- Competition Bureau of Canada

- Eugene Oscapelle

- Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police

- Canadian Police Association

- Ottawa Police Identity Theft Branch

- Credit Union Central of Canada

- Phone Busters, The Canadian Anti-Fraud Call Centre

- Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic

- Private Investigators Association

- Criminal Intellegence Service Canada

- Option consommateurs

- Equifax Canada or TransUnion Canada

- Canadian Bankers Association

- Interac Association

- Mastercard or Visa

- Canada’s Office of Consumers Affairs, Industry Canada – Consumer Measures Committee

That the Committee proceed to clause-by-clause consideration on April 8, 2008.

 

At 6:00 p.m., the Committee adjourned to the call of the Chair.

 



Miriam Burke
Clerk of the Committee

 
 
2008/04/15 9:20 a.m.