moved for leave to introduce Bill C-270, an act to amend the Witness Protection Program Act and to make a consequential amendment to another act (protection of spouses whose life is in danger).
Mr. Speaker, domestic violence is a horrendous crime in our society that is often committed behind closed doors.
In 1996, 21,901 cases of spousal assault were recorded in a sample of 154 police departments across Canada. More recently in the year 2000, 166 police departments reported nearly 34,000 incidents of spousal violence.
The staggering increase with this form of violence is particularly cruel because it is committed within a family by an assailant known to the victim.
My private member's bill which I am reintroducing today provides protection to victims of domestic violence. If passed, the bill would serve to formally protect those people whose lives are in danger because of acts committed by a spouse or former spouse, a common law spouse or former common law spouse by allowing them access to the witness protection system.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)