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e-3132 (Justice)

Initiated by Rysa Kronebusch from Burnaby, British Columbia

Original language of petition: English

Petition to the Government of Canada

  • The Supreme Court of Canada (Bedford v. Canada, 2013) found laws that violated sex workers’ Section 7 rights to "security of person" to be unconstitutional;
  • Bill C-36, the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act, passed in November 2014, denies sex workers of their Section 7 rights to "security of person" in a roundabout way by criminalizing the purchase of sexual services for the first time in Canadian history;
  • Bill C-36 puts our most marginalized members of society at risk of being beaten, raped and killed because criminalization hinders their ability to seek assistance from law enforcement and puts barriers to accessing health, safety and other benefits available to workers;
  • Bill C-36 hinders workers' rights to negotiate the terms of employment;
  • Amnesty International has called for decriminalization of consensual sex work, including laws that prohibit associated activities, based on evidence that these laws make sex workers less safe and provide impunity for abusers because sex workers are often too scared of being penalized to report crime to police; and
  • Amnesty International has stated that laws on sex work should focus on protecting people from exploitation and abuse, rather than trying to ban all sex work and penalize sex workers
We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to repeal Bill C-36 to ensure all Canadians, regardless of their chosen profession, are not denied their constitutional right to security of person.

Response by the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Signed by (Minister or Parliamentary Secretary): The Honourable David Lametti

In 2014, former Bill C-36, the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act, enacted a version of the “Nordic Model”, first implemented in Sweden in 1999, and then subsequently in other countries, including Norway, France and Ireland. The Government is very concerned about the safety of all the persons engaged in the sex trade and is committed to taking into account the interests of all impacted groups. Former Bill C-36 requires that a comprehensive Parliamentary review of its provisions be undertaken within five years of its enactment. Parliament is responsible for starting this review, which will provide an appropriate forum for Parliamentarians to examine the full range of effects that this legislation has had since its coming into force.

Open for signature
January 29, 2021, at 1:20 p.m. (EDT)
Closed for signature
March 30, 2021, at 1:20 p.m. (EDT)
Presented to the House of Commons
Randall Garrison (Esquimalt—Saanich—Sooke)
April 21, 2021 (Petition No. 432-00847)
Government response tabled
June 4, 2021
Photo - Randall Garrison
New Democratic Party Caucus
British Columbia
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