An Act to amend the Criminal Code and to make consequential amendments to other Acts


Marco Mendicino  Liberal


Second reading (House), as of March 9, 2023

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

This enactment amends the Criminal Code in order to create a regime under which the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness may authorize an eligible person to carry out, in a geographic area that is controlled by a terrorist group and for certain purposes, activities that otherwise would be prohibited under paragraph 83.03(b) of that Act (which becomes subsection 83.03(2)). It also makes consequential amendments to other Acts.


All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, an excellent resource from the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

March 23rd, 2023 / 3:55 p.m.
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Ajax Ontario


Mark Holland LiberalLeader of the Government in the House of Commons

Mr. Speaker, I am sure the hon. member across the way, having not had an opportunity to ask the Thursday question and not having been granted that opportunity, might be somewhat confused about the nature of the Thursday question or what it would be about, so of course we excuse him for that.

This afternoon, we are going to be concluding second reading debate of Bill C-26, concerning the critical cyber systems protection act. I would also like to thank all parties for their co-operation in helping to conclude that debate.

As all members are aware, and as I am sure you are aware of and quite excited for, Mr. Speaker, the House will be adjourned tomorrow for the address of the United States President, President Joe Biden.

On Monday, we will be dealing with the Senate amendments in relation to Bill C-11, the online streaming act.

Tuesday, we will continue the debate at second reading of Bill C-27, the digital charter implementation act, with the budget presentation taking place later that day, at 4 p.m.

Members will be pleased to know that days one and two of the budget debate, which I know members are anxiously awaiting, will be happening on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively.

On Friday, we will proceed to the second reading debate of Bill C-41, regarding humanitarian aid to vulnerable Afghans.

Business of the HouseRoutine Proceedings

March 22nd, 2023 / 4:50 p.m.
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Garnett Genuis Conservative Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, AB

Mr. Speaker, Conservatives share the desire to move forward discussion of this bill quickly. Therefore, I seek unanimous consent for the following motion: That, notwithstanding any standing order, special order or usual practice of the House, in relation to the motion adopted earlier today regarding the second reading motion of Bill C-41 , an act to amend the Criminal Code and to make consequential amendments to other acts, Monday, March 27, be the day designated for the debate.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

March 22nd, 2023 / 3:05 p.m.
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Papineau Québec


Justin Trudeau LiberalPrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for Yukon for his excellent question and his hard work. We introduced Bill C‑41 to enable Canadian humanitarian organizations to provide vital aid to the Afghan people, while maintaining our strong anti-terrorism laws.

This is in addition to the $156 million we have allocated to international organizations since August 2021. I hope that my colleagues across the way will support the quick passage of Bill C‑41 and support quick aid for the Afghan people.

Historic Places of Canada ActGovernment Orders

March 21st, 2023 / 4:40 p.m.
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Garnett Genuis Conservative Sherwood Park—Fort Saskatchewan, AB

Madam Speaker, it is a pleasure to rise and address a packed House this afternoon. The government often calls its legislation “historic” and often it is not historic. However, in a very formal sense this is a historic piece of legislation insofar as it establishes rules around national historic sites.

Just as a preface, though, to the points I would like to make about this legislation, I imagine that much has been said by Conservatives about the issue of gatekeepers, about how the government's great fondness for red tape, for regulations, for gatekeepers, is making it harder for people to go about their business.

What is a gatekeeper? A gatekeeper is a regulator, an authority of some kind that prevents people from being able to go about their business or to do things that they should reasonably be able to do. Maybe the gatekeeper allows them to get through the gate eventually but imposes additional conditions or challenges that prevent that individual from going forward in a sufficiently timely way.

I think many Canadians look at various aspects of their lives and at the way government is operating, and they see way too much gatekeeping. They see way too much red tape. Modern life, because of the bureaucratization of various things, has just become excessively complicated and frustrating for people who are trying to proceed with normal life and do things that, in times past, were not over-regulated.

Conservatives are putting forward an agenda aimed at reducing red tape, at making life easier for Canadians and at allowing development to proceed without undue barriers. We made a number of genuinely historic announcements in the past week about initiatives that a Conservative government would implement, aimed at removing gatekeepers. One of those announcements was around housing. We have said that there was too much gatekeeping, too much Nimbyism, happening at the municipal level that prevents housing from getting built. When there are all sorts of little barriers that accumulate into large barriers, we see a shortage of new housing, which in turn makes housing less affordable for Canadians.

Our leader has announced strong measures that are going to require municipalities to get that gatekeeping, that red tape, out of the way. We have also announced a new measure around credentials. For over 50 years, people with trade certifications have been able to work in other parts of the country. However, people with certain professional distinctions are not able, if working virtually for instance, to easily provide that professional support across the country.

These are some instances of gatekeeping we have committed to addressing, and that, I think, need to be addressed urgently. They are a part of this whole constellation of red tape the government is piling on Canadians. This is the reality about how the government approaches things and how we approach things.

That brings us to the discussion of Bill C-23. I welcome the applause from across the way from the member for Winnipeg North. I mentioned this before, but he recently referred to me as a “mischievous little guy”. I am very proud of that, actually. I know that if the member for Winnipeg North has considered me to be mischievous, then I have had a good day. I will do my best to keep it up.

When it comes to Bill C-23, the government is saying a number of things about the designation of historic places and sites. On the face of it they seem reasonable, saying that the government should be able to designate certain places, persons and events as having historical significance for the country. It wants to have the designation of those places with plaques erected to celebrate those places, perhaps. It wants to be consulting widely, including consulting indigenous Canadians on those designations, and thus regulate the use of those places in a way that accords with their historic status.

On the face of it, at least for the second reading vote where we vote on the principle, there is some logic in saying that, yes, there can be a framework for the designation of certain sites, recognizing their historic significance. However, the concern is that we have a government that has such a tendency to use every possible pretext for imposing additional red tape, for making it harder to proceed with development project. It is a government that talks a good talk sometimes about the housing affordability challenges but in practice has done nothing to actually get housing built, a government that is fundamentally comfortable with red tape, gatekeepers and barriers preventing people from going about their normal lives. When that is the reality of what this government is all about, then people are understandably looking at Bill C-23 and asking what tools it would provide to the government for additional gatekeeping and additional restrictions on development.

When the power is vested in the hands of the minister and the minister would be able to make these designations, which would automatically impact the use of a place, and areas around it, by the way, that could create significant problems if that power is used in a way that is unreasonable. If the government is making these kinds of designations, and if the effect of making those designations is that development projects in and around the area are not able to move forward and the existing use of a particular land or particular place is no longer allowed, and if these designations are made in a way that does not reflect proper engagement or consultation with local people in the area, that would be a significant problem.

We can look at the tool that this legislation would provide to the minister to make designations and to use those designations in a variety of ways and, frankly, I would say that it is consistent with a pattern we are seeing from this government in terms of legislation. We are seeing legislation with less and less practical detail. Rather, we are seeing a lot of legislation that enables the government to do something later on.

Right beside Bill C-23, we had Bill C-22, a bill that would provide a benefit for Canadians living with disabilities. In effect, the bill would empower the government to create aspects of that benefit but not prescribe the nature of that benefit in legislation. We had Bill C-41, a bill that would empower the government to make certain exceptions in the Anti-terrorism Act, but it did not provide specificity around places where it would apply and many other aspects of how those exceptions would function. Thus, we have this pattern with the government of taking on new powers for itself through legislation, without seeing the specifics in the bill.

The kind of rhetorical approach the government brings to these debates is this: “Just trust us. We mean well. We are going to make sure that, when we are designating these places, it is going to be in accordance with what makes sense. We are reasonable people, for goodness' sake.”

However, the problem is that Canadians do not see the government as reasonable. They do not see the government as trustworthy. What we have actually seen, particularly from the Minister of Environment, and I think from the government in general, is a lack of recognition of the important role that jobs, opportunity and development play in our country, and the need to remove gatekeepers and red tape. We have not seen from the government a proper appreciation of that, and the effect, I think, has been very negative for this country.

I want to now speak on the issues of indigenous consultation that are in the bill. The legislation—

March 10th, 2023 / 2:50 p.m.
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Alexis Brunelle-Duceppe Bloc Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

My next questions are a bit off topic, and there are no wrong answers. I myself don't have any thoughts on this; I really need the insights of our witnesses.

For a year now, we've been pressing the executive branch of government to amend the Criminal Code to allow our humanitarian organizations to do their work in Afghanistan.

Yesterday, the government introduced Bill C‑41. We know that the devil is in the details.

Have you had time to look at Bill C‑41?

If you have, do you have any first impressions of the bill to share with us?

I don't know who the best person to answer my question would be.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

March 9th, 2023 / 3:05 p.m.
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Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario


Marco Mendicino LiberalMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, the relationship between Canada and Afghanistan is deep and abiding. That is why, after Kabul fell, we introduced a program that would resettle 40,000 refugees. That is a goal we are approximately 30,000 into, and we will continue to do that.

We cannot forget about the women, the girls and the religious minorities who have been systematically targeted by the Taliban. That is why, today, we introduced Bill C-41, which would reduce barriers and would allow us to deliver the humanitarian aid, the food, the shelter and the clothing they need. By doing so, by passing this law, and hopefully with the support of all opposition parties, we will be able to get that support to them as quickly as possible, while at the same time tackling and pushing back against the Taliban.

Criminal CodeRoutine Proceedings

March 9th, 2023 / 10:05 a.m.
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Eglinton—Lawrence Ontario


Marco Mendicino LiberalMinister of Public Safety

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-41, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

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