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Results: 1 - 15 of 421
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I want to thank Justice Arbour for her hard work, for her report and for her candour today.
Madam Justice, when we are looking at the issues around the transfer of all of these cases, to be clear, you're talking about cases going forward, not the historic cases that are already within the Canadian Armed Forces being transferred to the civilian court. Is that correct?
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you, Madam Justice.
When we are looking at the transfer of cases from the Department of National Defence and from the Canadian Armed Forces military justice system over to the civilian courts, as well as civilian police forces, some of the posturing by the provinces and municipalities is around who's going to pay for it.
Is this covered under existing resources, or should the federal government be increasing transfers to provinces to help pay for the cases they're going to have to deal with that are coming out of the Canadian Armed Forces?
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Okay. I appreciate that.
Before my time runs out.... We're all legislators here. You're talking about the changes we need to make to legislation, so you're talking about the National Defence Act and the Criminal Code, which would probably need some amendments to accommodate the transfer of all these charges of sexual offences that are being laid from members of the Canadian Armed Forces.
Exactly which sections do we need to abolish or amend so that we can do this quickly? I understand that recommendation 5 is where we have to move the yardsticks, and this is where it seems the government got tripped up here.
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
You should entertain a point of order, Mr. Chair. I said “point of order” before you were—
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Mr. Chair, it's not an assertion. In the report, Madam Arbour actually talked about the issue of whether or not there should be an inspector general, who would replace the ombudsman, so this is relevant to the case.
The ombudsman currently deals with a lot of the complaints around sexual misconduct within the Canadian Armed Forces. This is germane to the discussion. I would like to hear the answer to the question that Mrs. Gallant just asked.
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Thanks, Mr. Chair.
To Minister Anand and everyone from the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces, first of all, thank you for the response to the report. It's the first time we've seen this done. Your predecessor sat on the Deschamps report for seven years and let it collect dust on his desk, so this is a very positive step forward.
To follow up on my colleague Ms. Mathyssen's comments, we did just have Justice Arbour here, and she was critical of the response to recommendation 5. We know that, in this place, we can get legislation done fast, although Bill C-77, the victims bill of rights in the military, took seven years to finally get brought into force.
What's your timeline on getting this before us in an expedited manner? All parliamentarians want to see this moved from the military justice system to civilian courts. What's your timeline for changes to the National Defence Act and whether or not we need to make changes to the Criminal Code?
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Let me intercede first, because Justice Arbour was quite critical. She says that there shouldn't be any concerns here, that we have constitutional responsibility that already exists. Prior to 1998, this was already outside of the purview of military justice. She's saying to repeal the current legislation that empowered the military justice system to take over sexual offences that would fall under the Criminal Code and to return it back to the civilian courts, where they were prior to 1998.
The question is, why not just move forward with simple legislation to repeal those sections of the National Defence Act and allow the constitutional responsibility and jurisdiction of the civil courts to take over, as well as the police agencies, for that matter?
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
I don't have a lot of time, Minister.
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
You talk about referring cases to the civilian court, which we're currently doing on an interim basis. As of now, 97 military sexual assault cases, I understand, have been referred to the civilian system. National Defence rejected 40 of them. Why is that?
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
That's what I've been told: 40 cases that were requested to be transferred to civilian courts were rejected and are still within National Defence.
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
I call this meeting to order.
We are starting meeting number 44. I want to welcome everyone to it. Our chair is indisposed on a parliamentary trip and in sunnier climes than we are right now. We are continuing our study on Arctic security, which we started on October 6 with a motion under Standing Order 108(2).
Joining us today is Jody Thomas, former deputy minister of national defence and no stranger to this committee. She is now the national security and intelligence adviser to the Prime Minister. She is joined by Jordan Zed, interim foreign and defence policy adviser to the Prime Minister, and Mike MacDonald, assistant secretary to the cabinet, security and intelligence.
Welcome to all of you.
Ms. Thomas, I invite you to lead off with your opening comments. You have five minutes.
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you. We're going to move to our first round.
Mrs. Gallant, you have six minutes.
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
You're just out of time there.
Can you provide a very brief answer, Ms. Thomas?
View James Bezan Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you.
Ms. Lambropoulos, you have the floor for six minutes.
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