Mr. Speaker, I want to chat for a minute about how the bill impacts the small businesses in the community of Vancouver Kingsway.
Vancouver Kingsway is a commercial centre made up almost entirely of small businesses. Up and down Kingsway, Victoria Drive and Nanaimo Street, thousands of small businesses are operated by families and individual proprietors who employ Canadians. They are the real drivers of the Canadian economy. Whether run by Vietnamese, Chinese, Filipino or South Asian families, the people in these businesses have told me that they are having difficulty staying afloat. In many cases, the HST has really hurt their businesses. Now we see the issue of them being subject to charges under the current Criminal Code for defending their own property.
I believe all of us in the House agree that we need to make changes to the Criminal Code. Does my hon. colleague agree with the New Democrats that we should split off the sections of the bill, which he finds controversial, and I agree with him, about defence of property and defence of person and pass the part of the bill that extends the right of someone to conduct a citizen's arrest within a reasonable time of the commission of the offence and, at all times, restrict that person to reasonable measures so the person is not justified in committing an assault on the alleged criminal? In his view, would that be a better approach to dealing with this matter?