Thursday January 29, 2015

Conservatives move to introduce life sentences without parole

Listen 21:59
lifebehindbars-feature

A life sentence could soon mean life with no possibility of parole. This week it was confirmed that new proposed legislation from the Conservatives is on its way, designed to eliminate even the chance of parole for some crimes.

"...The cost of crime in our society is $1.9-billion. This goes without the emotional cost and the human factor. So what we intend to do is table legislation that will protect the society from those individuals that represent a threat."

Steven Blaney, Minister of Public Safety

Steven Blaney was confirming speculation this week that new legislation is on its way soon, designed to eliminate even the chance of parole for some crimes.

Right now, anyone sentenced to life behind bars has the chance to apply for parole after 25 years -- with no guarantee it will be granted. The new bill would change that for those convicted of crimes deemed to be the most serious.

The opposition has already mounted some serious objections.

"We've always in this country believed that there is the opportunity for rehabilitation. Just putting people behind bars and not giving them the programming that they can contribute to society in other ways isn't the answer..."

Wayne Easter, Public Safety and National Security critic for the Liberal Party

To discuss the proposed legislation, we heard from two guests:

We requested an interview with Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney. His office referred us to Justice Minister Peter MacKay. Minister MacKay was not available this morning. The Parliamentary Secretaries to ministers MacKay and Blaney were also unavailable.

What do you think of the proposed legislation? Should the possibility of parole be removed for certain crimes?

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This segment was produced by The Current's Gord Westmacott, Sujata Berry and Sonya Buyting.