Bill C-51

Safer Witnesses Act

An Act to amend the Witness Protection Program Act and to make a consequential amendment to another Act

This bill was tabled by Vic Toews on March 19, 2013.

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How does a bill become a law?

Don’t trust Schoolhouse Rock – that’s for Americans. To become a law, a bill in the Canada’s Parliament needs to go through the following steps, and pass when voted on during each step:

  • It all starts with the first reading, when the bill is introduced.
  • Next comes the second reading, when other MPs or Senators get to debate the bill.
  • After that, the bill goes to a committee that studies and amends it line-by-line. Once they finish, the bill goes returns to the House or Senate for the report stage, where anyone can propose amendments.
  • The third reading is the moment of truth: no more changes, just a debate and a final vote on whether or not the bill should pass.
  • If a bill makes it through all of those steps – in both the House of Commons and Senate – it’s ready to get Royal Assent and become a law.

Status of this Bill

Second Reading and Referral to Committee

Activity Feed

  • Photo of Dan Harris
    Dan Harris spoke about Government Orders > Combating Counterfeit Products Act

    Mr. Speaker, here we are again, debating another bill that was put under time allocation, which is 44 or 45 times now. ... more

    June 12, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Peter Van Loan
    Peter Van Loan spoke about Business of the House

    Mr. Speaker, I do want to start by reviewing what our House has accomplished over the preceding five days since I last answered the Thursday question. ... more

    June 6, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Andrew Scheer
    Andrew Scheer spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Pursuant to an order made on Wednesday, May 22, 2012, the House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion at the third reading stage of Bill C-51. ... more

    June 3, 2013,   Parliament
  • spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    The House resumed from May 30 consideration of the motion that Bill C-51, An Act to amend the Witness Protection Program Act and to make a consequential amendment to another Act, be read the third time and passed.

    June 3, 2013,   Parliament
  • Vote 710
    That the Bill be now read a third time and do pass.
    • In favour 100%
      Green
    • In favour 100%
      Liberal
    • In favour 100%
      Bloc
    • In favour 100%
      NDP
    • In favour 100%
      Conservative
    June 3, 2013
  • Photo of Philip Toone
    Philip Toone spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, thank you for recognizing me. I may be the last to speak about this bill tonight. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Elizabeth May
    Elizabeth May spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, my hon. friend gave an excellent review on Bill C-51. From what I can see, the House is unanimous in planning to pass the bill. However, it is important to point out where we could, without a doubt, see a lack of adequate resources. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Dan Harris
    Dan Harris spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank my hon. colleague for his remarks. However, I would like to refute the last statement he made in regard to people always saying they need more money. Time and again tonight, we have heard Conservative members talk about how the officials from the RCMP said they did not need more financing. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Randy Hoback
    Randy Hoback spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I am thankful for the opportunity to speak about Bill C-51, critical legislation that would ensure our government can continue its work to keep Canadians safe and our communities secure. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Elizabeth May
    Elizabeth May spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, people have been beating up a bit on the member for Ottawa South for suggesting we were wasting time and money debating. Nothing is ever a complete waste. There is always some benefit in having debate, even though we all agree that Bill C-51 should pass and we all support the protection of witnesses. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Kyle Seeback
    Kyle Seeback spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I have to say I am pleased the members opposite are going to support our criminal justice reform bill, because that certainly has not been their record in this Parliament. Just the other night they voted against amendments to the not criminally responsible legislation. They did not even want it to go to committee. They voted against it at second reading. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Pierre Dionne Labelle
    Pierre Dionne Labelle spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I rise today in the House to speak about a bill that is dear to my heart, and that is Bill C-51. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Patrick Brown
    Patrick Brown spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, ensuring that all Canadians have safe communities in which to live has been a priority for our government since taking office. Our government has undertaken numerous initiatives to ensure the safety of Canadians. For example, our government is following through on its commitment to give the RCMP the tools it needs to enhance public confidence and increase accountability to its members and Canadians. This is apparent through our support for Bill C-42, the enhancing Royal Canadian Mounted Police accountability act. This legislation would enable the RCMP to continue its ongoing transformation toward a strong and vibrant national police force that Canadians will continue to believe in and value. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Jack Harris
    Jack Harris spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to have an opportunity to speak in the House this evening to this important legislation, Bill C-51, which amends the Witness Protection Program Act and makes other consequential amendments. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Kellie Leitch
    Kellie Leitch spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, the safer witnesses act is intended to help strengthen the current federal witness protection program, a program which could play a better role to effectively combat crime, particularly organized crime. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Linda Duncan
    Linda Duncan spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, contrary to the apparent perspective of some in this place, I think it is actually worthwhile to debate these bills. Each one of us learns a lot more by hearing the perspectives of the other side. I am grateful for the opportunity, despite the late hour, to participate in this debate. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    The House resumed consideration of the motion that Bill C-51, An Act to amend the Witness Protection Program Act and to make a consequential amendment to another Act, be read the third time and passed.

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Bev Shipley
    Bev Shipley spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, again we find an opportunity to move ahead on a number of initiatives that this government has brought forward since 2006 to help strengthen and encourage the protection not only of our police officers but obviously of those victims and how we protect them. This gives me an opportunity to speak to Bill C-51, the safer witnesses act. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Colin Mayes
    Colin Mayes spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to be up here this evening with everyone here. I am standing to support Bill C-51, the safer witnesses act. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Stella Ambler
    Stella Ambler spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, if my hon. colleague across the way does not like debating things that we all agree on, then maybe she will vote for the next time allocation motion. That way we can go home at 11 o'clock tonight instead of midnight. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Stella Ambler
    Stella Ambler spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure this evening to speak to the safer witnesses act. As members may know by now, it is a product of extensive input from knowledgeable parties across the country. Indeed, I am pleased to note that the proposed legislation has earned plaudits from several provinces and law enforcement agencies. This positive reaction speaks volumes about the thoroughness and timeliness of Bill C-51. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of James Bezan
    James Bezan spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, the committee heard from a number of different witnesses, including the RCMP. The assistant commissioner from the RCMP in charge of federal and international operations said, “As a result of the designation regime” and the way the program is going to work “the RCMP will deal directly with the designated official for the provincial witness protection program”. He said, “This will promote efficiencies in services provided to the provinces and will further enhance the security of both the federal and the provincial program”. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Anne-Marie Day
    Anne-Marie Day spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, on April 5, the Barreau du Québec sent a letter to the Minister of Justice. The letter is easy to find, since it has been made public. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of James Bezan
    James Bezan spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to discuss Bill C-51, the safer witnesses act. Witness protection is one of the most important tools law enforcement has at its disposal to combat criminal activity. An effective witness protection program is particularly valuable in the fight against organized crime and terrorism. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Pierre Jacob
    Pierre Jacob spoke about Government Orders > Safer Witnesses Act

    Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to speak about Bill C-51, something that I am genuinely concerned about. ... more

    May 31, 2013,   Parliament
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