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View Alistair MacGregor Profile
NDP (BC)
Thank you, Chair, and thank you, Minister, for appearing.
We know from recent decisions there are discredited myths and stereotypes that have been used, and thus we see the necessity of Bill C-5. Complainants of sexual assault are also facing inadequate social supports. They have inadequate information about the core process, and they're often confronted with a system that ignores their wishes and their complaints. Bill C-5, by itself, is not going to solve all these problem, and I hope your government and your provincial colleagues are recognizing the systemic issues that also need to be certainly addressed within the supports.
I have a question about the differences between Bill C-5 and Bill C-337. Bill C-337 went through the House of Commons with unanimous consent. Your department—and I know you weren't the minister at the time—at the time gave its consent to Bill C-337 going through. It did come with some amendments in the Senate. Bill C-5 more closely represents the version of the bill that made it through the Senate's legal and constitutional affairs committee.
There are some noticeable parts that are different. Under Bill C-337, judicial appointments would have been required to complete judicial training at the satisfaction of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs. Bill C-5 now omits this. In the reporting requirement, Bill C-337 included a section where the number of sexual assault cases heard by judges who never participated in seminars would also have to be included in the reports.
Minister, can you explain why these changes made their way into Bill C-5, and what changed in the three years? Your government originally assented to these being in Bill C-337, and now we don't see them in Bill C-5. I'd like you to explain the department's position on this.
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