IN THE HOUSE ~ Private Member's Business - Bill C-406 - Victim restitution

Bill C-406. Introduction and first reading
Mr. Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster, NDP)

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-406, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (victim restitution).

He said: Mr. Speaker, the NDP has a very comprehensive crime fighting strategy. We believe the most effective crime fighting strategy is to ensure the crimes are not committed in the first place.

One of the components that we have talked about as well is ensuring victims are adequately compensated. My bill, an act to amend the Criminal Code for victim restitution, would change the word “may” to “shall” in subsection 738.1 of the Criminal Code. In other words, this would direct judges, as opposed to allowing them leeway, to order that offenders make restitution to victims of their crimes.

By ensuring that direction is provided to judges, rather than leaving it as an option, would help to fast track compensation for crime victims. We believe this is very important.

We will continue to fight to ensure that crimes are not committed and that resources are available in the community but when there are victims of crime we believe that restitution should be provided and that is the intention of this private member's bill.