Friday, October 06, 2006

New Library of Parliament Publications

Here are some recent studies and legislative summaries prepared by the Library of Parliament's Research Service. They were added to the parliamentary website in the last 2 months:

  • International Food Standards: "Food standards, quality, and safety issues are often subject to public as well as parliamentary debates. Various private Members’ bills proposing to amend the Food and Drugs Act have been introduced in Parliament to address concerns about food labelling, natural health products, and alcohol warnings. The total value of Canadian agri-food exports in 2004 was $26.45 billion, and imports were valued at $20.43 billion. With the expansion of the global food trade and growing consumer awareness in matters concerning food, international standards related to food and food safety are becoming increasingly important. Moreover, food production and processing methods in one country may not be acceptable to consumers in another part of the world ...The most important issue is that all foods be safe for human consumption. For this reason, almost all countries have a food control system to protect their population against unsafe, adulterated or otherwise poor-quality food. Internationally, the Codex Alimentarius Commission (the Commission) administers the Codex Alimentarius, which is a collection of food standards developed and presented in a uniform and codified manner."
  • Trafficking in Persons: "The United Nations estimates that 700,000 people are trafficked annually worldwide – this is a fluid figure that is difficult to pin down. Different organizations arrive at different estimates, partly because of differences in interpretation of the term, but primarily because of the extraordinarily clandestine nature of the activity being measured and the impossibility of arriving at concrete figures. Needless to say, the problem of trafficking in persons has become one of the most pressing topics in global migration policy today. This paper will discuss the concept of trafficking in general terms and provide an overview of the legislative framework surrounding the issue at the international level and within the Canadian context. It will conclude with a discussion of potential gaps in Canadian legislation and policy with respect to trafficking in persons."
  • Bill C-17: An Act to amend the Judges Act and certain other Acts in relation to courts: "The bill deals with judicial salaries and allowances, judicial annuities and other benefits. As such, it constitutes a response to the May 2004 report of the Judicial Compensation and Benefits Commission..."
  • Bill C-21: An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Firearms Act(Non-registration of firearms that are neither prohibited nor restricted): "Under Bill C-21, the Registrar of Firearms ... will no longer issue, or keep records of, registration certificates for non-restricted firearms. Provisions of the Firearms Act regarding the expiry and revocation of registration certificates are accordingly amended, as are provisions setting out the documentation that is involved when lending, importing or exporting non-restricted firearms. Although registration certificates will no longer be involved when transferring (i.e., selling or giving) a firearm, a person transferring a non-restricted firearm to an individual will be required to seek an authorization from the Chief Firearms Officer, who will verify that the recipient is entitled to possess the firearm... Although Bill C-21 removes the need to hold a registration certificate for non restricted firearms, it does not change the requirement for all individuals to hold a licence in order to possess a firearm, and therefore to undergo a background check and pass any required safety course. Additionally, Bill C-21 will allow for regulations to require firearms businesses to record transactions relating to non-restricted firearms."
  • Bill C-23: An Act to amend the Criminal Code (criminal procedure, language of the accused, sentencing and other amendments): "The bill makes various amendments, especially procedural ones, to the Criminal Code. Other amendments concern the language of the accused, sentencing and certain criminal offences... the amendments concern a host of unrelated Criminal Code provisions. However, they are the result of consultations with the provinces and territories, within the context, for example, of the Uniform Law Conference of Canada"

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 8:15 pm


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