Liberals’ bail reforms will keep more Black, Indigenous people in jail, lawyers warn

OTTAWA – An affiliation representing Black legal professionals in Canada says extra Black folks shall be despatched to jail if the Liberal authorities’s bail-reform laws passes as is.

And Indigenous Bar Affiliation member Christa Large Canoe says it runs the danger of seeing extra Indigenous ladies stored behind bars if a proposed provision round intimidate companion violence is stored in place.

Representatives of the Canadian Affiliation of Black Legal professionals and the Indigenous Bar Affiliation are testifying earlier than a Senate committee learning Invoice C-48, which seeks to toughen up entry to bail for sure repeat, violent offenders.

The laws would increase reverse-onus provisions to incorporate those that have a earlier conviction or perhaps a discharge relating an offence of intimate companion violence.

Large Canoe says Indigenous ladies who’re victims of home violence are sometimes charged by police when an officer responds to an incident, and shifting the onus to such ladies to show why they need to be launched earlier than trial carries the potential for hurt.

Canadian Affiliation of Black Legal professionals member Theresa Donkor says the laws undermines the Liberal authorities’s efforts to deal with racial discrimination and the overrepresentation of Black folks behind bars.

This report by The Canadian Press was first printed Sept. 28, 2023.