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November 27th, 2013

New Democrats put focus on cyberbullying

Today New Democrats moved to split the Conservative cyberbullying bill (C-13) in order to put the focus squarely on legislative reform to make the distribution of intimate images without consent illegal. This would have ensured that other unrelated provisions were dealt with separately.

“It is irresponsible for the Conservatives to play politics with this important and sensitive topic,” said NDP Justice critic Françoise Boivin (Gatineau). “Splitting the bill as proposed by the NDP would have allowed the committee to focus solely on cyberbullying. Unfortunately, for the Conservatives, playing political games is more important than working together to protect Canadians.”

Earlier this year, New Democrat MP Robert Chisholm (Dartmouth--Coal Harbour) introduced a bill to make non-consensual distribution of sexually explicit images illegal. However, instead of putting partisan politics aside to fast-track this bill, the Conservatives introduced their own version containing dozens of unrelated provisions.

“Many people in the digital community have raised concerns that this bill contains significant items like changing electronic interception laws, which are unrelated to the issue at hand,” said NDP Digital Issues critic Charmaine Borg (Terrebonne – Blainville). “At committee, New Democrats will press the Conservatives for answers about the impact of these provisions.”