MP Guy Lauzon writes in this letter about the Federal Governments Combatting Terrorism Act : As recent events in Boston and terrorist arrests in Canada have demonstrated, international terrorism will continue to be a threat for the foreseeable future. My caucus colleagues and I believe the government needs to provide law enforcement and national security agencies with the means to anticipate and respond effectively to terrorism. This is why our Government spent last week in Parliament debating and passing S-7, The Combatting Terrorism Act.
This Act will help the police prevent terrorists from carrying out attacks. The legislation reinstates the investigative hearings and recognizance with conditions provision’s that expired in 2007. These investigative hearings facilitate the gathering of information that may be relevant to the investigation of past or future terrorism offences. The recognizance with conditions provision also provide more tools for combating terrorism by requiring a person to abide by certain conditions ensuring they cannot carry out a terrorist activity. Even though these measures have been intact for five years they have never been used or abused by law enforcement agencies. They are simply required to provide law enforcement with the tools they need to combat terrorism.
This Act also creates new offences of leaving or attempting to leave Canada to commit certain terrorism offences. For example, leaving or attempting to leave Canada to participate in any activity of a terrorist group, such as a terrorist training camp, will become a specific criminal offence with a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. Further, this act imposes a maximum of 14 years imprisonment if a person leaves or attempts to leave Canada to facilitate a terrorist activity.
I believe that the law enforcement agencies in Canada require these measures in order to successfully combat terrorism within Canada. I am pleased that this important bill was swiftly passed. Canadian streets and families are safer from terrorism because of it.