THE TRUTH ABOUT BILL C-246
- On October 5th, Parliament will vote on Second Reading of Bill C-246, The Modernizing AnimalProtection Act.
- All reasonable people support legislation that addresses real issues of animal cruelty, including illegal puppy mills, banning the use of dog and cat fur in textiles and shark finning (which is already illegal in Canada).
- Unfortunately, C-246 is a badly flawed piece of legislation that goes far beyond basic issues on which we can all agree.
- If passed, it will have serious negative consequences for anglers, hunters, trappers, beef, dairy, sheep and poultry farmers, equestrians and others in the animal use community.
- C-246 raises the risk of criminalizing currently legal, heavily regulated activities, lowers the standards to lay criminal charges and removes protections under the current criminal law.
- C-246 puts the onus on the defendant to prove innocence rather than on the prosecutor to prove guilt, undermining our system of justice.
- Key sections of the bill are poorly defined and leave currently legal activities open to frivolous charges brought by animal rights activists as they have repeatedly promised to do during debate over previous similar legislation:
“The onus is on humane societies and other groups on the front lines to push this legislation to the limit, to test the parameters of this law and have the courage and conviction to lay charges. That’s what this is all about. Make no mistake about it.”Liz White, Animal Alliance
- Mr. Erskine-Smith had the opportunity to consult widely on the bill before introduction, but talked to no one except the animal rights community.
- Recommendations from the outdoor community to provide certainty were ignored.
- Hunting, fishing, trapping, beef, dairy, sheep and poultry farming employ tens of thousands of Canadians, contribute $70.4 billion annually to the national economy and could be irreparably harmed by this legislation.
- You can’t fix an unfixable bill - something that previous Parliaments recognized by consistently voting against similar legislation.
- We are respectfully asking Members of Parliament to do the same and vote against C-246.