Animal Cruelty Laws and C-246
Many of my constituents have contacted me regarding Bill C-246 and Canada’s animal cruelty laws.
I share your concerns for having the proper legislation on animal cruelty in Canada. Parliament recently voted on this bill and it was defeated with 84 voting yes and 198 voting no. A combination of Liberal and Conservative Members of Parliament (MP) voted against the bill. As the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Justice, Liberal MP Bill Blair, pointed out during the debate there were some valid concerns with this bill—that it does not include specific exemptions for lawful activities such as ranching, hunting, fishing, trapping, medical research, etc. And that is only one of the concerns.
You can find MP Blair’s speech regarding this topic here:
Since there were favourable aspects of the bill, Conservative MP Earl Dreeshen introduced a motion in the beginning of October asking the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to undertake a study to prepare a more appropriate animal welfare bill. The motion will require the committee look into activities such as shark finning, importation of shark fins, and sale of dog and cat fur. The motion will also require the committee look into steps required to ensure law-abiding farmers and hunters are not adversely impacted and to clarify the Criminal Code definition of bestiality because of the Supreme Court’s decision in several different cases to limit the definition.
The wording of MP Dreeshen’s motion is as follows:
M-76 – October 3, 2016 – Mr. Dreeshen (Red Deer—Mountain View) – That the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights be instructed to undertake a study to prepare and bring in a bill on: (a) the Supreme Court of Canada decision in R. v. D.L.W., and steps required to clarify the Criminal Code definition of bestiality to mean any sexual activity between a person and an animal; (b) the steps required to prohibit the practise commonly known as shark finning; (c) the steps required to prohibit, without an appropriate permit, the importation of shark fins that are not attached to a shark carcass; (d) the steps required to compel the labelling of any felis catus and canis lupus familiaris skin, or felis catus and canis lupus familiaris hair or fur not removed from the skin; and (e) the steps required to ensure that law-abiding hunters and farmers are not adversely impacted; that the Committee report to the House no later than 120 days from the adoption of this motion, provided that in its report, the Committee shall recommend the principles, scope, and general provisions of the said bill and may include recommendations regarding legislative wording; and, that the presentation of a report pursuant to this order shall be an order to introduce a bill based thereon; and that when the Member for Red Deer—Mountain View, in proposing a motion for first reading of a bill, states that the bill is in response to the recommendations contained in a report pursuant to this order, the second reading and subsequent stages of the bill shall be considered under Private Members’ Business and the bill shall be placed immediately at the bottom of the Order of Precedence of Private Members’ Business as a votable item in the name of the Member for Red Deer—Mountain View.
I will be supporting this motion when it comes up for a vote.
Thank you to all the constituents that contacted me regarding this issue.