Canada: Jamie Sarkonak: What counts as a sex crime is too broad and it’s ruining people’s lives

Source: 11/7/22

If some sex crimes are of such low significance that it’s considered a civil rights violation to put convicts’ addresses in a database for police eyes only, Parliament should re-examine its approach to sex-related offences as a whole.

The recent Supreme Court decision in which it was declared unconstitutional to order all sex offenders onto a national registry upon conviction highlights a problem, not with the registry itself, but with the ever-widening scope of what constitutes a sex crime. It’s a sign that Parliament should return to deciding the rules governing sexual offences in Canada rather than leaving it to the judiciary.

In R. v. Ndhlovu, the court said that automatically requiring offenders to register violated their constitutional rights — specifically, the right to life, liberty and security. The majority was concerned about burdening people with a low risk of re-offending by automatically placing them on the national registry. The justices thought it was onerous to maintain up-to-date information in a non-public police database and that the law didn’t take into consideration convicts’ individual circumstances or their likelihood of re-offending.

Given that only one-fifth to one-quarter of sex crime convicts commit another offence, the court might have a point. But perhaps this is because the court has lowered the bar for what constitutes a sex crime to such an extent that it’s more than just rapists or child predators who can be convicted of sexual assault.

Indeed, the dilution of the seriousness of sex crimes is a problem of the Supreme Court’s own making. Rulings over the years have lowered the bar on sex crimes to the point where a conviction just doesn’t carry the significance it used to.

Read the full article


Related posts

Notify of
We welcome a lively discussion with all view points - keeping in mind...  
  1. Your submission will be reviewed by one of our volunteer moderators. Moderating decisions may be subjective.
  2. Please keep the tone of your comment civil and courteous. This is a public forum.
  3. Swear words should be starred out such as f*k and s*t
  4. Please stay on topic - both in terms of the organization in general and this post in particular.
  5. Please refrain from general political statements in (dis)favor of one of the major parties or their representatives.
  6. Please take personal conversations off this forum.
  7. We will not publish any comments advocating for violent or any illegal action.
  8. We cannot connect participants privately - feel free to leave your contact info here. You may want to create a new / free, readily available email address.
  9. Please refrain from copying and pasting repetitive and lengthy amounts of text.
  10. Please do not post in all Caps.
  11. If you wish to link to a serious and relevant media article, legitimate advocacy group or other pertinent web site / document, please provide the full link. No abbreviated / obfuscated links.
  12. We suggest to compose lengthy comments in a desktop text editor and copy and paste them into the comment form
  13. We will not publish any posts containing any names not mentioned in the original article.
  14. Please choose a short user name that does not contain links to other web sites or identify real people
  15. Please do not solicit funds
  16. If you use any abbreviation such as Failure To Register (FTR), or any others, the first time you use it please expand it for new people to better understand.
  17. All commenters are required to provide a real email address where we can contact them.  It will not be displayed on the site.
  18. Please send any input regarding moderation or other website issues via email to moderator [at] all4consolaws [dot] org
ACSOL, including but not limited to its board members and agents, does not provide legal advice on this website.  In addition, ACSOL warns that those who provide comments on this website may or may not be legal professionals on whose advice one can reasonably rely.  

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Wow, Canada seems to finally get it. Where is the US?

Oh no that’s a bad bad move. If parliament decides we’re even worse off. They’re subject to public opinion in ways the judiciary is decidedly, not. To put it mildly.

Someone who cares:

In this area, the U.S. exists in “Spain during the Inquisition” or “Salem, Ma. during the Witch Trials”. Torquemada had nothing on the U.S. Congress, DOJ, USSC, etc.

Any man under indictment for an attack has the opportunity the evoke “self defense” as a strategy. America needs to defend itself from the kings of capital and their use of the DDI.

only one-fifth to one-quarter of sex crime convicts commit another offence

It seems Canada’s recidivism is markedly higher than here.