Gateway Gazette

MPs Rempel and Cooper Launch Petition Calling on the Federal Government to FiIll Judicial Vacancies

CALGARY, AB – The Honourable Michelle Rempel, Conservative Shadow Minister for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, and Michael Cooper, Conservative Deputy Shadow Minister for Justice, today raised awareness about the human costs associated with the Liberal government’s failure to appoint judges at the federal level. They announced the launch of an official online Parliamentary petition calling on the Minister of Justice to immediately fill Canada’s judicial vacancies. Canadians can sign the petition by going to www.SupportVictims.ca.

Cooper also announced his intention to move a notice of motion at the Justice Committee to study the impact these vacancies have had on Canada’s judicial system. MP Rempel and MP Cooper were joined by the petition’s sponsor Scott Hamilton who is related to alleged murder victims Sara Baillie and Taliyah Marsman.

“Justin Trudeau is failing Canada’s victims of crime and their families by allowing these vacancies to go unfilled while growing the backlog of cases within our courts. Every day that Liberals drag their feet increases the pressure on our courts, adds stress to victims and their families, and allows the opportunity for those accused of serious crimes to have their cases stayed or dismissed,” said Rempel.

“There have been a record number of judicial vacancies due to the Liberals failure to fill them in a timely manner. Their inaction is completely unacceptable especially in light of the Jordan decision. As a result, hundreds of cases have already been thrown out, including those involving murder, sexual assault and other serious offences.  Thousands more are at risk,” said Cooper.

“The families of Sara and Taliyah want to thank both Honorable Members of Parliament, Ms. Rempel and Mr. Cooper, for challenging our Government to do better. Although future judicial appointments will not assist us in seeking a timely trial, we certainly believe future appointments will help alleviate the backlog of cases and allow justice to occur in a more timely manner,” said Hamilton.

“The Prime Minister and Minister of Justice need to their job and support Canada’s victims of crime by appointing these judges,” said Rempel.

“The Minister of Justice needs to do her job and immediately fill judicial vacancies so that victims like Sara Baillie and her five-year old daughter Taliyah Marsman get the justice they deserve and violent career criminals like Edward Downey don’t walk free due to delay,” said Cooper.

The federal government is failing to keep up with a growing number of judicial vacancies in Canada.  As a result, murderers and other violent offenders are walking free.  One such case that is at risk of being stayed or dismissed is the alleged double murder case involving Sara Baillie and Taliyah Marsman.

The Canadian Bar Association has asked the Justice Minister to urgently address the situation as court delays are seriously undermining Canadians’ confidence in our justice system.

Canadians can sign the petition by visiting www.SupportVictims.ca.

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