moved that the bill be read a third time and passed.
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank my colleagues in the House today, on this side and the other side. I was quite impressed with the way that the justice committee seriously considered the benefits of Bill C-489, the safe at home bill. I started from the beginning with a willingness to have amendments to strengthen the bill. The committee participated in that, and there were some important amendments that were installed into the bill. Therefore, I want to thank everyone.
Initially, this came to my attention, as I shared with the House, from the story of a mother who came to my office saying her daughter had been sexually assaulted by the neighbour across the street. After six months in jail, the neighbour was able to serve the rest of his sentence at home. It was horrific to hear from witnesses, particularly the family of the victim, of the horrific experience of having an offender live right across the street from them. They eventually had to move out of that neighbourhood. They just could not take it anymore.
The bill is an important step to deal with this issue of the needs of victims to be able to heal. The courts would retain the important discretion to decide on an appropriate distance. The bill asks for two kilometres, or what the courts would deem as an appropriate distance. The other big improvement with Bill C-489 in our Criminal Code would be with the administrative bodies, Corrections Canada and the National Parole Board. They would then have to carry through with making sure that if the courts deemed a distance was needed, then the distance would need to be maintained throughout the sentence, including after sentencing, through section 810 of the Criminal Code if necessary.
We need to protect the victims and give them a chance to heal. That is what Bill C-489 does. The witnesses we heard at committee unanimously said it is a very good step.
Again, I want to thank the House. I would like to keep my comments short so that debate can collapse in this hour and we can move on to a vote as soon as possible.