Updated: Federal bail legislation: Ministers Amery and Ellis

“The lenient bail system set in motion by the federal government in 2019 with Bill
C-75, An Act to Amend the Criminal Code, Youth Criminal Justice Act and other Acts and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, has led to an increasing sense that our criminal justice system is not holding criminals properly accountable for their actions, and this is completely unacceptable. However, with the news that Bill C-48, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (bail reform), has passed third reading in the House of Commons, we are cautiously optimistic that federal changes to bail will be enacted soon. To protect Albertans, we will continue putting pressure on the federal government until bail reform becomes law – keeping more high-risk repeat offenders out of our communities and behind bars.

“While we wait for Bill C-48 to become law, Alberta continues to make sure all criminals, especially repeat violent offenders, are held accountable for their actions. To improve public safety, Alberta’s government is strengthening the Alberta Crown Prosecution Service. New targeted prosecution teams in Alberta’s major urban centres, in addition to changes to the bail practice protocol, are just some of the steps we are taking to address violent crime.

“The position of the Alberta government is absolutely clear: there is no safe haven in Alberta for criminals. The federal government must bring Bill C-48 into law as soon as possible.”
Mickey Amery, Minister of Justice

“While this action is long overdue, I’m encouraged to see the federal government take this important step on the first day of the fall session of Parliament.

“Albertans have a right to walk down the street without being physically attacked, they have a right to take transit to work without inhaling second-hand crystal meth smoke and they have a right to walk downtown without being caught in the crossfire between violent criminals.

“Ensuring law-abiding citizens are safe in their communities requires actionable reform that holds criminals accountable and keeps violent offenders off our streets. There is still a significant amount of work to be done before this legislation leads to action, and time will tell if this yields positive results.

“However, if repeat criminals continue to wreak havoc in our communities, our stance remains the same in that Bill C-75 should be repealed. Alberta’s government will do whatever it can to protect Albertans.” 
Mike Ellis, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services

Editor’s note: A previous version of this release contained an error