The brigade of campaign buses have been rolled out and the partisan trumpets are blasting party platform from coast to coast. Election time again in Canada. What does this mean for the Canadian Criminal Code and importantly, the issue of Pardons and the Pardoning Process?
The Conservative Party of Canada, under Stephen Harper, has announced that if elected with enough of the vote, they will pass an all-encompassing crime bill. These are generally known as omnibus bills – bills that contain multiple pieces of legislation that affect various segments of the legal code. This is not a footnote of Conservative Party platform. The Harper government wants to pass this bill within 100 days of the election on May 2nd.
Inside the bus is Bill-C23B. This bill has the purpose of giving the National Parole Board of Canada more discretion and power. The bill states “National Parole Board has…exclusive jurisdiction to grant or refuse to grant or to revoke a pardon”. Regardless of the merits of implementing this amendment and others to the Canadian Criminal Code the implication for Canadians remains clear. The process for applying for a pardon – soon to be known as “record suspension” – will become more difficult. Between 2009 and 2010, 7,000 applications to the NPB were rejected because they were incomplete or ineligible. With these amendments that number is bound to rise.
The large number of Canadians who are living with a criminal record, 13% and climbing, should be aware of the changes that will be coming down the legislative pipeline. There are options, Pardon Services exists to help Canadians successfully navigate the pardon process and arrive ultimately with a granted pardon. This enables Canadians to move forward, travel, receive due promotions and get employed. Pardon Services enables the growth of Canada and Canadians and will continue to do so as criminal legislation changes and moves forward.
If you are keen to get your pardon before the enactment of these legislations visit the most trusted pardon service provider to get the process started today.