Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the member from the Progressive Conservative Party for his fine speech and also my colleague from Calgary Northeast who, as he mentioned, was a police officer and knows this issue very well.
The first thing I want to address is the speech that came from the government. I cannot believe that the government would have the audacity to put forth such a piece of bureaucratic bafflegab that completely defies imagination. It is a speech that completely flies in the face of the experience of everybody in the House who has seen the effect of child abuse and of pedophilia.
Let me go through some of the comments made by the government. The speech said that the public is taken aback by minimum sentencing for pedophiles. I would like the member to show us one person in this country who is taken aback by minimum sentences for repeat pedophiles.
I want to emphasize that this bill, Carrie's guardian angel law, is not about an individual who has made a single assault on a child, as horrendous as that is. This is about an individual who has not only made multiple assaults and has been convicted once, but this person has come to the attention of the legal department of the police again and again.
In fact, if we look at individuals who have been convicted once for a sexual offence against a child, we know that those persons have not assaulted one child, but that they have assaulted many children. Pedophiles, before they are caught and convicted, have sexually assaulted multiple children before they come to the fore of the legal authorities. Then they come again because they have committed other sexual offences.
At the end of the day, this bill only applies to individuals who have sexually assaulted more than two dozen children. What kind of person does the government want to protect who would sexually assault, sexually abuse, and rape two dozen or more children?
As my friend from the Progressive Conservative Party said, one-third of all girls before the age of 18 and one-sixth of boys before the age of 16 have been sexually abused. They have been abused by individuals who are parasites, who are predators, and who in no way, shape or form should have the protection of the law above the protection of Canadians.
The member also said that Canadians want to feel safe and secure. They want to have high penalties, they want peace, and they want a safe society. That is why my colleague and Carrie Kohan have put the bill forward. That is why I have underneath my hand the names of more than 60,000 Canadians who have signed and supported this initiative. That is why Canadians want the law changed. That is why Bill C-214 should be adopted unanimously by the House.
The problem with the current law for the hon. member and the government is that the law is not protecting innocent people. The sentences are not being applied. Individuals are actually spending only a few months in jail for repeatedly sexually assaulting children. That is the line in the sand and that is the crux of the matter.
This is not like somebody who makes a one-off mistake by stealing something, by committing some offence where the victim is an adult, as horrendous and terrible as those offences are. This is about an entirely different circumstance, where the victim is a child or a baby. The victim is someone who cannot in any way defend themselves and the perpetrator is an adult who has done this multiple times before, two dozen times before the bill would actually come into force. That is what this is all about.
If the members of the Liberal Party do not support wholeheartedly Bill C-214 and unanimously adopt this in the House of Commons, they will pay a terrible price at the election booth. Worse, when they look into the eyes of their constituents and children of those constituents, they will have to ask themselves why they did not stand up to defend those children from sexual predators and from rape.
The gentleman from the Bloc Québécois spoke about rehabilitation. We are all in favour of rehabilitation. I used to be a guard in a maximum security prison, and I am a physician. The problem with pedophilia is that it is incurable. On balance, what we and the justice department have to do for justice to be served, is put the protection of children from pedophiles first and foremost. We have no alternative. That is the line in the sand.
The public may want to ask itself why it has taken so long for this issue to come to the House, why has the government not brought it forward itself and why has the government not made a bill that is patently in favour of the protection of children votable? Why has it prevented that from happening?
Government members were elected 10 years ago. This is not rocket science. As my colleagues have mentioned, a litany of violent pedophiles have raped dozens and dozens of children in our society. As Carrie Kohan would tell us, the justice department and the police are not there to protect them, not because the police do not want to, but because the police do not have the power to do so. Our justice department has not given the police the tools to do the job. Heart-rending as it is for our police officers, they cannot protect those children.
I have known Carrie Kohan for 17 years. She is a fighter. She does not quit. She, my colleague from Calgary Northeast and people across the country, including police forces, want to do something. It is not because they want to be punitive, or unforgiving, or lenient, it is because they recognize that the current state of affairs of the laws do not protect innocent children from pedophiles.
Why should a parent or parents not have information that a pedophile has moved next door to them and is a dangerous threat to their children's lives? Why are pedophiles sentenced yet serve only a third of that sentence? Why are they going on unescorted day paroles when only a fraction of their sentence has been served? Why is the public not informed of this?
This is not an action against an adult. This is an action against a child. I ask the hon. member and the government members who have children to look into their hearts and ask themselves if they were in Carrie Kohan's shoes, where a pedophile moved next door and tried to assault their child, what would they do? Would they still stand up in the House and oppose this bill or would they wholeheartedly support it?
I ask for full support of Bill C-214, and we want this passed for the people of our country forthwith.