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Accept Bill C-242: An Act to Amend the Criminal Code (inflicting torture)

September 21, 2016

Re: Bill C-242: An Act to Amend the Criminal Code (inflicting torture)

. It is in this capacity we write in support of the Private Member's Bill C-242 An Act to amend the Criminal Code (inflicting torture) that you introduced in the House of Commons and we understand has been sent for study to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

We,The Canadian Voice of Women for Peace (VOW), understand that presently Canadian legislation on torture (CC 269.1) only addresses torture inflicted by a State official or someone acting with the consent and acquiescence of such an official. Therefore, acts of torture carried out by private individuals under this section of the Criminal Code are not punishable as torture, instead are charged as another crime, for example, as aggravated assault.

The UN Committee against Torture has recommended that Canada criminalize in our legislation acts of torture inflicted by private individuals that are carried out in the private realm. We recommend our government leaders to accept Bill C-242 as its passage would amend the Criminal Code and uphold Canada’s commitment to the United Nations human rights instruments it has ratified, specifically the UN Convention against Torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

The Canadian Voice of Women for Peace (VOW) is part of a select number of NGOs that provide women the opportunity to appeal to national government and international diplomats, attend conferences at the United Nations including the UN Commission on the Status of Women, and to write and present briefs and statements to political heads of state and nations worldwide on women and peace issues. We readily respond to calls for guidance and research on peace and women’s issues locally, nationally, and internationally.

We express our strong support for the passage of Bill C-242.

For more information contact:
Lyn Adamson
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace
Phone: 416-603-7915
Cell: 416-731-6605

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