Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to speak to Bill C-251. I give my encouragement, thanks and admiration to the member for Mississauga East who has worked so hard to bring this bill to the forefront. If we could clap today I am sure we would because she has truly done a tremendous job on something that is going to bring enormous justice to the Canadian people. It will improve our justice system and make our streets safer.
The member is addressing an issue that goes to the worst, most predatorial of all individuals, the violent offender, the murderer, the rapist. The member is introducing a bill that allows for consecutive sentencing, not concurrent sentencing, for individuals who have proven to be a danger to society, who have proven to have violated the fundamental rights of another individual by committing the most atrocious violations through murder or rape.
The Canadian public does not find it acceptable that somebody who commits multiple rapes or murders can only receive one sentence or sentences which run concurrently. It is absolutely unbelievable that only 13% of child molesters, who are often multiple repeat offenders, and 30% of individuals who commit sexual assaults receive a sentence of two years or more. Bear in mind that individuals who receive any sentence can receive parole after serving only one-sixth of their sentence. They can be out on the street after serving only a few months for committing a violation against an individual. The innocent individual will have to live with the violation for the rest of their life. Bill C-251 addresses the root of this problem and provides a constructive outlet for keeping the streets of our country safe.
I would caution the government to make sure that this bill does not languish in committee. All too often private members' bills go to committee and the government blocks them. It prevents those bills from ever reaching third reading and becoming law.
It would be an absolute travesty if this were to happen to Bill C-251. It would be an enormous problem and would do a huge injustice to the hard work by one member of parliament, the member for Mississauga East. She has done so much work for 166 members in the House to arrive at this level of support for the bill. For 166 members to support the bill and for the bill to go to the committee to sit there and languish would be a huge problem. We will be watching the government and government leaders on the other side very carefully to make sure this never happens.
This issue also illustrates a larger problem with respect to Private Members' Business. I know that the House leader, the government whip and all other members opposite who have the power to change it are very interested in constructive solutions to making sure that Private Members' Business is a more lively part of the House.
Private Members' Business is one of the few opportunities for members of parliament to exercise ideas in the House. If the government continues to prevent it from being a useful tool it would violate the very basics of democracy. It would violate the ability of MPs to represent their constituents. It would violate the ability of the Canadian public to be represented in the House.
The government House leader was very vocal and provided many constructive suggestions when he was in opposition. He published a wonderful document along with Mr. Dingwall and a number of other people in 1992 which provided incredibly constructive suggestions on how to improve Private Members' Business.
I know the government House Leader is listening intently to me. I would encourage him to take the words he penned with his own hand in the wonderful document to reform Private Members' Business and make the House more democratic and more responsive to the needs of the backbenchers and the public. I encourage him to pull out that wonderful document, come to the House within the next two months and institute it.