Brad Butt MP February 10, 2015
Purpose of our new Legislation – criminalize the advocacy or promotion of terrorism offences in general; – counter terrorist recruitment by giving our courts the authority to order the removal of terrorist propaganda online; – enhance the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS)’s powers to address threats to the security of Canada while ensuring that courts maintain oversight;
– provide law enforcement agencies with enhanced ability to disrupt terrorism offences and terrorist activity; – enhance the Passenger Protect Program by further mitigating threats to transportation security and preventing travel by air for the purpose of engaging in terrorism;
Purpose of out new Legislation continued – make it easier for law enforcement agencies to detain suspected terrorists before they can harm Canadians and to toughen penalties for violating court ordered conditions on terrorist suspects;
– enable the effective and responsible sharing of relevant national security information across federal departments and agencies to better identify and address threats; – ensure that national security agencies are better able to protect and use classified information when denying entry and status to noncitizens who pose a threat to Canada; and, – provide witnesses and other participants in national security proceedings and prosecutions with additional protection.
criminalize the advocacy or promotion of terrorism offences • The Law Today: – Under the current criminal law, it is a crime to counsel or actively encourage others to commit a specific terrorism offence. However, the current law would not necessarily apply to someone who instructs others to "carry out attacks on Canada" because no specific terrorism offence is singled out.
• Our Changes: – The proposed legislation would help stop those who promote terrorism by creating a new Criminal Code offence that would criminalize the promotion of terrorism, including attacks on Canadians.
• Why This Change is Needed: – The proposed offence prohibits the intentional advocacy or promotion of terrorism, knowing or reckless as to whether it would result in terrorism. It is defined to safeguard the constitutionally protected right of freedom of expression.
Seizure of Terrorist Propaganda • The Law Today: – Under the current criminal law police forces do not have the authority to seize propaganda.
• Our Changes: – create a tool in the Criminal Code to give the courts the authority to order the removal of terrorist propaganda, including from the internet. All seizures would require a judicial order. Such materials would include any materials that promote or encourage acts of terrorism against Canadians in general, or the commission of a specific attack against Canadians.
• Why This Change is Needed: – The new measures are similar to laws that already exist in the United Kingdom, Australia and other In Addition these changes are similar to existing provisions in the Criminal Code that allow for the seizure of forms of material that is deemed criminal in nature, such as hate propaganda and child pornography.
Amending the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act • The Law Today – Currently, CSIS does not have a legal mandate to take action concerning threats. Instead, CSIS is limited to collecting and analyzing information and intelligence, and advising the Government of Canada. For instance, when CSIS conducts an interview as part of an investigation, the sole purpose of the interview must be to collect information, not to dissuade the subject from actions that threaten the security of Canadians.
Our Changes: – This Bill proposes to give CSIS a new mandate to intervene in order to disrupt threats to the security of Canada.
• Why This Changes is Needed: – With its new mandate, CSIS could take measures, at home and abroad, to disrupt threats when it had reasonable grounds to believe that there was a threat to the security of Canada. Threats to the security of Canada are defined in the CSIS Act, and include espionage, sabotage, foreign influenced activities, terrorism and domestic subversion (activities against the constitutionally established system of government in Canada).
Strengthening Prevention Powers • The Law Today: – Under the current law acts of terrorism are not treated differently in terms of powers of prevention by authorities.
• Our Changes: – The proposed amendments would enhance the ability of law enforcement agencies to detain suspected terrorists before they can harm Canadians through changes to the Criminal Code’s recognizance with conditions and peace bond provisions. The amendments would also toughen penalties for violating court ordered conditions on terrorist suspects.
• Why This Change is Needed: – The purpose of the recognizance with conditions measure is to address a situation where a police officer believes that a terrorist activity will soon be carried out but does not necessarily have more details. The purpose of a terrorism peace bond is to prevent or disrupt a specific individual from committing a terrorism offence.
Strengthening the Passenger Protection Program • The Law Today: – The Passenger Protect Program (PPP) is an air passenger security program. The PPP works with air carriers to screen commercial passenger flights to, from and within Canada.
Our Changes – expanding the program mandate to address both threats to transportation security and terrorist travel by air; – establishing clear authorities for protecting information and how it is shared with domestic and foreign partners; and – legally defining the recourse mechanisms and judicial review process for people who are affected by decisions made by the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness under the PPP; and
• Why This Change Is Needed – Ultimately, these changes will support a more effective Passenger Protect Program that could counter a wider range of threats using proportionate measures, while maintaining safeguards to promote privacy and accountability.
Security of Canada Information Sharing Act • The Law Today: – Today there are often barriers that prevent one department of the Federal Government from sharing information with another even if that information has national security implications. For example, Citizenship and Immigration Canada is limited in its proactive sharing of passport and immigration and related information with national security agencies.
• Our Changes: – The proposed Security of Canada Information Sharing Act will create a clear authority for Government institutions to share national security-relevant information with designated Canadian Government institutions that have national security responsibilities. Information may be shared proactively or in response to a request.
• Why This Change is Needed: –
Government of Canada institutions already share information with each other for national security purposes. However, some institutions lack a clear authority to share national security-relevant information and, in some cases, legal barriers prevent or delay the sharing of key information.
Division 9 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act • The Law Today: – Division 9 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act allows the Government to use and protect classified information in immigration proceedings to determine whether noncitizens can enter or remain in Canada. The information cannot be disclosed publicly because doing so would injure national security (for example, by revealing investigation techniques) or would endanger the safety of a person (for example, by putting a witness’ life in danger).
Our Changes – The Bill would allow the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to appeal or have the Court review orders for public disclosure during Division 9 proceedings. Currently, an appeal or judicial review may be available only at the end of a proceeding. Even if the Minister sought and won an appeal at the end of the proceeding, it could be too late, as the information could have been disclosed publicly and the injury to national security may have already occurred, or a person’s safety may have already been endangered..
• Why This Change is Needed – Overall, these amendments will ensure that Division 9 proceedings continue to be fair, while offering more robust protections for classified information. It is expected that Division 9 proceedings will continue to be rarely used.
Enhancing Witness Protection • The Law Today: – Currently, the criminal justice system provides certain measures to protect “justice system participants”. A justice system participant is someone who plays a role in the criminal justice system such as a prosecutor, juror, witness or a judge. The current definition of “justice system participant” does not include those who play a role in national security proceedings, other than criminal proceedings.
Our Changes: – Under the proposed amendments to the Criminal Code, when deciding whether to allow a witness to testify using a pseudonym or via closed-circuit television, a court would be required to consider a witness’s responsibilities relating to national security or intelligence.
Why This Change is Needed: – These proposed reforms would further build upon other key amendments already introduced by the Government of Canada including significant reforms contained in Bill C-32, the Victims Bill of Rights Act to make testimonial aids more readily available for witnesses and to provide better protection to Canadian Security Intelligence Service employees and persons who provide information to the Service as proposed in Bill C-44, the Protection of Canada from Terrorists
Office of Brad Butt MP 154 Queen Street South Unit 104 Mississauga, Ontario L5M 2P4 (905) 812-1811 [email protected]