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June 12th, 2019
June 12th, 2019


Last week, the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs presented its report on Bill C-75, An Act to amend the Criminal Code, the Youth Criminal Justice Act and other Acts and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

Touted as the Government's response to the SCC's Jordan ruling, you will recall that the AJC testified in September last year at the House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights. When the Bill was referred to the Senate in April this year, we submitted a brief.

We are very pleased that our principal message was heard and made its way into the Committee Chair's observations and final report:

Observation 6
Resources for federal prosecutors
The Committee notes that while Bill C-75 could help reduce delays within the criminal justice system, it does not provide a complete solution to the problem.

To make the criminal justice system more efficient, the bill must come with greater resources for the criminal justice system. The committee recalls the conclusion of its report Delaying Justice is Denying Justice that a lack of resources and insufficient funding has been contributing to court delays and that "underfunding has been particularly challenging for many Crown prosecutors across Canada" (at page 34).

In this regard, the Committee is particularly concerned about the lack of adequate funding within the Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC). The Committee believes that the lack of adequate funding within the PPSC will undermine the billīs ability to reduce court delays.

We are pleased that the Senate recognized what we have long been saying and hope that the Senate's voice will make a difference.  This is but one small step in a positive direction; we have miles and miles yet to go. Know that we will keep on marching and using every tool at our disposal to improve the working conditions for all of Canada's Crown Counsel.

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