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IN THE LEDGE – When will NDP abandon the catch-and-release program?

Excerpt from Question Period in B.C. Legislature today, Oct. 4, 2022.

K. Falcon: For over five years, the soft-on-crime former Attorney General personally oversaw the worst explosion in random attacks and social chaos in the history of this province. Under repeated questioning by this opposition in the spring, after first denying and minimizing the rise in violent attacks, the then Attorney General hired consultants to tell him how to do his job.

Now the NDP’s latest move was to hide this consultant’s report by releasing it on a Saturday morning of a long weekend, hoping that no one was going to pay attention to the damning conclusions in that failed catch-and-release program that the former Attorney General was operating.

Look at what’s happening in communities every day in this province. We’ve got young women with strollers being chased and having bottles thrown at them. We’ve got a young man in Yaletown stabbed to death by a random stranger.

We’ve got violent assaults taking place just outside of these legislative buildings, and that doesn’t include the thousands and thousands of cases that go unreported every week in this province.

This is what the probation officer said on page 76 of that consultant’s report: “People are being released into community on bail that definitely pose a significant public safety risk. I am talking about machete attacks, attempted murders. These people are being released.”

My question to the Attorney General is: how many more innocent people have to be assaulted before the NDP abandon the former Attorney General’s catch-and-release program?

Hon. M. Rankin: I would thank the hon. Leader of the Opposition for this important question.

In her remarks earlier today, the member for Surrey South properly acknowledged the complexity of policing in a modern society, for which I’m grateful. The member said that somehow we have hidden, to use his term, the consultant’s report. Let me review what happened. We released the report on
for this important question. In her remarks earlier today, the member for Surrey South properly acknowledged the complexity of policing in a modern society, for which I’m grateful.

The member said that somehow we have hidden — to use his term — the consultant’s report. Let me review what happened, Mr. Speaker. We released the report on October 1, having promised to do so by the end of the month. But we gave the early acknowledgment of the recommendations and the summary of the report’s 28 recommendations in advance of that so people could be prepared to address those. We have already indicated that we will be adopting three of those recommendations. Of course, since there’s 28, we have a lot more work to do.

Mr. Speaker, this is a serious problem, but I think to use clichés such as catch and release is simply not doing justice to the complexity and the severity of the problem. That is not the case, and the member should know better.
Under the federal…

Interjections.

Mr. Speaker: Members.

Hon. M. Rankin: …Criminal Code and under the Charter of Rights, bail is a constitutional right, and the Criminal Code is, of course, passed by the federal order of government in our country. We have increased the budget, under our watch, of the Crown counsel’s office by almost a third, whereas in the last year of the last government’s budget, they increased the budget of Crown counsel by less than 1 percent.

Mr. Speaker, we get it. We want to fix it, and we’re going to work harder with our partners at the local government to make it right.

Source: B.C. Hansard.

About Mel Rothenburger (9224 Articles)
ArmchairMayor.ca is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At ArmchairMayor.ca he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

1 Comment on IN THE LEDGE – When will NDP abandon the catch-and-release program?

  1. Funny how most socreds/ liberals, forget their policies of closing provincial care facilities under their government, so their friends and contributors could operate group homes for profit, has lead to increases in mental health issues and attacks etc. by the very people whom had been housed and supported under the not for profit system. Amazing the amnesia they have .

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