Unborn Victims of Crime Act

An Act to amend the Criminal Code (injuring or causing the death of an unborn child while committing an offence)

This bill was last introduced in the 39th Parliament, 2nd Session, which ended in September 2008.

Sponsor

Ken Epp  Conservative

Introduced as a private member’s bill. (These don’t often become law.)

Status

Not active, as of March 5, 2008
(This bill did not become law.)

Summary

This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment amends the Criminal Code by making it an offence to injure, cause the death of or attempt to cause the death of a child before or during its birth while committing or attempting to commit an offence against the mother.

Elsewhere

All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, provided by the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Votes

March 5, 2008 Passed That the Bill be now read a second time and referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

June 2nd, 2008 / 3:10 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, once again, I have 1,500 new names on Bill C-484. The petitioners come from right across the country, but most of them are from Calgary and Fort McMurray in Alberta, and a large number in this group is from various locations in the province of Quebec.

The petitioners draw attention to the fact that when a pregnant woman decides to have a child, the forcing upon her of the death or injury of her unborn child is a violation of a woman's right to protect and give life to that child.

They urge Parliament to support Bill C-484, the unborn victims of crime act.

Bill C-484Oral Questions

June 2nd, 2008 / 2:50 p.m.
See context

Bloc

Johanne Deschamps Bloc Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, in Montreal on Sunday, some 1,500 people demonstrated against Bill C-484. Despite what the Conservatives say, this bill opens the door to the recriminalization of abortion. Everyone in Quebec is critical of it, and the National Assembly adopted a unanimous motion asking that this bill be withdrawn.

Will the government shed its ideological straitjacket and vote against this regressive bill that threatens women's rights?

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 29th, 2008 / 1:15 p.m.
See context

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, I submit a petition which expresses profound concern regarding Bill C-484, the proposed unborn victims of crime act, because it conflicts with the Criminal Code and provides personhood to fetuses that would necessarily compromise women's established rights.

Violence against pregnant women, as members well know, is part of a larger societal problem of violence against women. Legal homicide laws elsewhere have done nothing to reduce this because they do not address the root inequalities that perpetuate the violence.

The best way to protect fetuses is to provide pregnant women the supports and resources they need for a good pregnancy outcome, including protection from domestic violence.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 28th, 2008 / 3:35 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present another 550 names of petitioners who urge Parliament to pass Bill C-484, the unborn victims of crime act. These petitioners recognize that the bill specifically does not apply to elective abortion. They also recognize that when a pregnant woman has a child that she wants, there ought to be second offence when that choice and child are taken away from her against her will and with violence.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 28th, 2008 / 3:30 p.m.
See context

Conservative

David Tilson Conservative Dufferin—Caledon, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have a petition signed by 158 constituents from my riding who urge the House of Commons to support Bill C-484, which is a private member's bill introduced by the member for Edmonton—Sherwood Park.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 26th, 2008 / 3:20 p.m.
See context

NDP

Irene Mathyssen NDP London—Fanshawe, ON

Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions for the House today.

The first petition expresses profound concern regarding Bill C-484, the proposed unborn victims of crime act that conflicts with the Criminal Code because it grants a type of legal personhood to fetuses that would necessarily compromise women's established rights.

Violence against pregnant women is part of a larger societal problem of violence against women everywhere. Fetal homicide laws elsewhere have done nothing to reduce this violence because they do not address the root causes of inequality that perpetuate this violence.

The best way to protect fetuses is to provide pregnant women with the support and resources they need for a good pregnancy outcome, including protection from domestic violence.

The petitioners ask the Government of Canada to reject Bill C-484.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 16th, 2008 / 12:05 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Leon Benoit Conservative Vegreville—Wainwright, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present this petition. The petitioners note that under current federal criminal law an unborn child is not recognized as a victim with respect to violent crime. They note that a vast majority of the public supports laws to protect unborn children from acts of violence against their mothers that also injure or kill the child in their womb.

They call on Parliament to enact legislation which would recognize unborn children as separate victims when they are injured or killed during the commission of an offence against their mothers, allowing two charges to be laid instead of one. Of course, if Bill C-484 were passed, it would do exactly that.

Criminal CodeRoutine Proceedings

May 14th, 2008 / 3:10 p.m.
See context

Liberal

Brent St. Denis Liberal Algoma—Manitoulin—Kapuskasing, ON

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-543, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (abuse of pregnant woman).

Mr. Speaker, the reason I am tabling the bill is many of us felt that Bill C-484, while it did attempt to accomplish certain things in protecting pregnant women from assault or abuse, left too many unanswered questions and too many doors were left open.

For those of us who are pro-choice, but did not want to go down that road, I have created a simple bill, which would provide judges with the ability to increase the penalties for those who would knowingly assault or abuse a pregnant woman.

I have had this tested to see whether it would open the door to recriminalization of abortion, and it will not. I have had it tested to see whether it would have any censure against the women herself, should she choose to have an abortion, and that will not be the case. In fact, it plugs all the holes left by Bill C-484.

I invite members, who felt as awkward as I did in not supporting Bill C-484, to look at this as a very helpful option to assist pregnant women, should they be attacked by those who are knowingly aware they are pregnant.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 13th, 2008 / 10:10 a.m.
See context

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to present a large number of petitions. It almost makes me think of the Hank Snow song I've Been Everywhere when I look at the names on these petitions, people from North Bay to Morinville, High Prairie, Devon, Bonavista, Edmonton, Sooke, and many other cities.

These people have signed their names in support of Bill C-484, a very important bill which says that when a woman is pregnant by choice and wants to give her child life, love and care, no one has the right to take that right and that child away from her before the child is born. They are urging Parliament to pass Bill C-484.

With these over 2,000 names, I believe the total is now approaching 24,000 names that have been tabled in this House.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 9th, 2008 / 12:15 p.m.
See context

Liberal

John McKay Liberal Scarborough—Guildwood, ON

Mr. Speaker, I, too, have received quite a number of petitions with regard to Bill C-484, which was spoken to earlier in the House.

The petition contains hundreds of, if not over a thousand, signatures, many of which are from my riding. Therefore, I, too, take the honour of presenting this petition.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 9th, 2008 / 12:10 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am encouraged by the number of people who are responding positively to Bill C-484, the bill that would provide protection for unborn children when they, as well as their mothers, are victims of a criminal attack.

The people who are sending in their names today come from right across the country, as I have experienced over the last number of days. They draw particular attention to the fact that forcing upon a pregnant woman the death and injury of her unborn child is a violation of a woman's right to protect and give life to her child.

This petition contains another 735 signatures today. I am very proud to present the petition.

Bill C-484Oral Questions

May 9th, 2008 / 11:50 a.m.
See context

Bloc

Carole Freeman Bloc Châteauguay—Saint-Constant, QC

Mr. Speaker, during the pro-life rally held yesterday here in Ottawa, a number of Conservative members demonstrated to reopen the debate on abortion. Yet the government insists that it does not want to reopen this debate.

If the Minister of Justice agrees with the Prime Minister, will he do everything he can to ensure that his colleagues vote against Bill C-484, which could recriminalize abortion?

Unborn Victims of Crime ActStatements By Members

May 8th, 2008 / 2:10 p.m.
See context

Bloc

Nicole Demers Bloc Laval, QC

Mr. Speaker, as we speak, a pro-choice demonstration is being held at the human rights monument on Elgin Street to counterbalance the March for Life, which was organized by pro-life groups and is taking place on Parliament Hill. These pro-life groups do not hesitate to recruit Catholic school children and bring them to the event.

Groups such as the Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action and Planned Parenthood of Ottawa invited members of Parliament to participate in the pro-choice demonstration in order to show their support for women's freedom of choice regarding abortion and their opposition to Bill C-484—the bill that would extend rights to the fetus and could set women back 20 years.

The women of Quebec are no fools. They see the Conservatives' ploy, which could re-criminalize abortion instead of tackling the problem of violence against women.

I urge everyone here to show their opposition to Bill C-484 and to sign the Bloc Québécois' petition.

Unborn Victims of CrimePetitionsRoutine Proceedings

May 6th, 2008 / 1:05 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Ken Epp Conservative Edmonton—Sherwood Park, AB

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present many names on petitions in support of Bill C-484, the unborn victims of crime act. These petitions keep pouring in from all areas of the country. In this particular instance, I have over 2,500 names on the petitions I am presenting today.

These people are asking that Parliament pass Bill C-484. They mention specifically my name as the sponsor of the bill and are asking us to recognize in law the life of the child that the woman wants to give birth to, give life to and give love to.

Unborn Victims of Crime ActOral Questions

April 28th, 2008 / 2:35 p.m.
See context

Bloc

Johanne Deschamps Bloc Laurentides—Labelle, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Status of Women and Official Languages emphasizes that she voted against Bill C-484.

She should tell us today the real reasons why she voted against this bill. She should tell us what fears led her to oppose the bill.