Madam Speaker, I listened with great interest to the comments on the floor of the House.
I know the member for Edmonton—St. Albert, as a lawyer himself, would consider the views of the Canadian Bar Association to have some value in this debate. The national criminal law section of the Canadian Bar Association, which is made up of both prosecutors and defence counsel, is probably the element of the legal profession that is most intimately knowledgeable about the effect of criminal laws on what happens. Here is what it said in a written submission on the effectiveness of Bill C-15:
We believe the Bill would not be effective, would be very costly, would add to strains on the administration of justice, could create unjust and disproportionate sentences and ultimately would not achieve its intended goal of greater public safety.
That seems to me to be a comprehensive, reasoned and considered view. It is saying that the bill would not do what it is supposed to do. Being tough on crime, which is what the CBA is talking about, is not going to be effective if Bill C-15 is the means by which the government chooses to be tough on crime. It would do nothing additional by way of prevention and the percentage of money spent on prevention, some 2.5%, is so minuscule compared to the whole enforcement side. We have to find a better way.
I am really sorry to hear that the member for Edmonton—St. Albert does not recognize the views of his colleagues in the legal profession who know more about this than anybody else.