Maurice VELLACOTT

VELLACOTT, Dr. Maurice, B.R.E., M.Div., D.Min.

Personal Data

Party
Conservative
Constituency
Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Vellacott
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=371336d4-a92b-4661-94b4-14d8939d7e94&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
businessman, minister

Parliamentary Career

June 2, 1997 - March 26, 2000
REF
  Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
March 27, 2000 - October 22, 2000
CA
  Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
November 27, 2000 - May 23, 2004
CA
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
December 23, 2003 - May 23, 2004
CPC
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
June 28, 2004 - November 29, 2005
CPC
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
January 23, 2006 - September 7, 2008
CPC
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
October 14, 2008 - March 26, 2011
CPC
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
May 2, 2011 - August 2, 2015
CPC
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)
May 2, 2011 -
CPC
  Saskatoon--Wanuskewin (Saskatchewan)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 3 of 128)


May 1, 2015

Mr. Maurice Vellacott (Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions to present.

The first petition draws attention to a CBC documentary revealing that ultrasounds are being used in Canada to tell the sex of an unborn child so expectant parents can choose to terminate the pregnancy if the unborn child is a girl. The petitioners note that 92% of Canadians believe sex-selective pregnancy termination should be illegal and note that 200 million girls are missing worldwide as a result.

The petitioners feel that it is a terrible shame that the three deadliest words in the world are “it's a girl”. They would like Parliament to condemn discrimination against girls occurring through sex-selective pregnancy termination.

Topic:   Routine Proceedings
Subtopic:   Petitions
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April 24, 2015

Mr. Maurice Vellacott (Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, on Apri1 23, 1920, the national assembly of the Turkish republic was established.

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder of the Turkish republic, dedicated April 23 to the children of the country because they would be the future of the new nation. Turkey's children's day showed the world the importance he placed on the health and education of young people.

Years later, UNICEF decided to recognize April 23 as International Children's Day. Since 1979, National Sovereignty and Children's Day in Turkey has been celebrated with guest children from around the world. They are housed in Turkish homes and interact with kids from other nations, and learn about each other's cultures. When these children participate in a special session of the parliament, a truly international assembly is formed, where children pledge their commitment to international peace and friendship.

Turkish Canadians are rightly proud that their country of origin was the initiator of the world's first national children's holiday. Children's day in Canada is celebrated with numerous multicultural children's activities and events that focus on our children, our future.

Topic:   Statements By Members
Subtopic:   Children's Day Celebrations
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April 24, 2015

Mr. Maurice Vellacott (Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, this petition is from 355 signatories, from B.C. all the way across to Newfoundland in our fair country.

The petitioners draw Parliament's attention to the fact that a high percentage of prostitutes are forced into the sex trade and are trafficked. The petitioners are calling on the Parliament of Canada to legislate such that it be a criminal offence to purchase sex from a woman, man, or child and that it be a criminal offence for pimps, madams, and others to profit from the proceeds of this pernicious sex trade.

Topic:   Routine Proceedings
Subtopic:   Petitions
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March 27, 2015

Mr. Maurice Vellacott (Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, CPC)

Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today to speak about our government's decisive action to keep our streets and communities safe. I am proud to note that we have a particular focus on protecting the most vulnerable of all in our society, and that is our dear children.

Since 2006, we have taken a number of actions in this regard, including, among many others, enacting new and increasing existing mandatory minimum penalties for child sex offences and making it illegal for anyone to provide sexually explicit material to a child for the purpose of facilitating the commission of a sexual offence against that child.

Recently, as members of this House will know, we took action to crack down on cyberbullying. That has been mentioned in speeches here already. We have all been moved by several tragic cases we have heard about, from across the country and North America, where young lives have been lost due to the emotional torment caused by cyberbullying. That is why last year we passed legislation to give police and prosecutors new tools to effectively address cyberbullying.

Although our government has taken significant strides to protect our children, more work remains to be done. Of course, more work always remains to be done. Sadly, other threats to our children exist, perhaps none so disturbing as the threat from child sexual offenders, and that seems to be growing domestically and abroad. In 2013 alone in Canada, some 4,200 sexual violations against children were reported to police. Those were just those cases that were reported, not to mention the many others that have no doubt occurred and for one reason or another were not reported.

Child sexual exploitation is a horrible, evil crime. Although most of us could never fully imagine the extent of devastation caused by abuse of this sort, we understand that the impact on the victims endures long after the abuse ends. That is why we are committed to doing everything we can to protect our children, and that is why our government has introduced the comprehensive legislation before us.

The tougher penalties for child predators act would help us better address the enormity of this crime and further crack down on offenders convicted of child sexual abuse offences. It proposes a range of measures to protect our children. It will take a few moments for me to outline some of these changes we have proposed, beginning with the proposed changes to the Criminal Code.

The first is to ensure that those convicted of child pornography and child-contact child sexual offences serve their sentences one after another, consecutively, instead of discounting them, where we pile one sentence on the other and the offenders get a break and less time served. Particularly, this would be for offenders who have victimized multiple children. Further, this legislation would increase both maximum and minimum penalties for child sex offences and would increase penalties for the violation of conditions in supervision orders. Finally, it would ensure that the spouse of a person charged with child pornography offences could be obliged to testify in court. That is important, as often it is the spouse who can provide the testimony needed to secure convictions in these cases.

Now I would like to turn our attention to some of the important proposed amendments to the Sex Offender Information Registration Act.

Before I get to the changes, I would note that this act, which came into force in 2004, allowed for the establishment of a database containing information on convicted sex offenders across Canada. It is called the National Sex Offender Registry. It is administered by the RCMP and is used by police across Canada to help them prevent and investigate crimes of a sexual nature. There are currently approximately 37,000 sex offenders listed on the database, of which 25,000 have been convicted of a sex offence against a child.

Certainly some important reporting obligations are already in place in the current system. For example, offenders are required to report annually and any time they change their address or legal name, and all registered sex offenders are required to report absences of seven days or more for trips either within or outside of Canada.

It is also worth noting that significant reforms came into effect in 2011 to strengthen the registry and the National DNA Data Bank. Those changes include the automatic inclusion, and mandatory DNA sampling, of convicted sex offenders in the registry, proactive use of the registry by police to prevent offences, registration of sex offenders convicted abroad, and parallel amendments to ensure that reforms apply to those convicted of sex offences through the military justice system.

Nevertheless, legitimate concerns remain about our ability to know the whereabouts of sex offenders, particularly given offenders' mobility to travel abroad to other countries.

Internationally, approximately one million children are exploited by sex tourists and sex traffickers each year. Our government is committed to taking action to protect children from sexual exploitation no matter where in the world it may occur.

Indeed, the changes we are proposing to the Sex Offender Information Registration Act would allow us to better protect children from sexual exploitation, both in Canada and abroad, by ensuring that police have more information about the travel plans of sex offenders. One proposed change is to broaden the reporting requirements for registered sex offenders about their international travel plans.

I mentioned a moment ago that all registered sex offenders are required to report absences of seven days or more for trips within or outside of Canada. However, currently the requirement for them to provide specific destinations and addresses is for domestic trips only.

We are proposing that sex offenders convicted of child sex offences be required to report absences of any duration for trips abroad, and, again, provide specific travel dates and locations. Registered sex offenders travelling abroad would be required to report every address or location at which they expect to stay for a trip of seven days or longer, and the specific dates that they will depart and return.

This brings me to the next proposed change, which is one that would allow for the establishment of information sharing between officials with access to the National Sex Offender Registry and officials at the Canadian Border Services Agency. Although this may surprise some, there is currently no mechanism for information sharing regarding sex offenders between those two organizations. It goes without saying that it limits our knowledge of sex offenders when they travel.

To close this gap, the bill proposes to authorize registry officials to disclose information about certain registered sex offenders to officials at the Canadian Border Services Agency, particularly in cases of child sex offenders assessed as high risk, so that they can be placed on a lookout system. In addition, border officials would be authorized to collect travel information about these sex offenders upon their return to Canada and then share it with National Sex Offender Registry officials.

Finally, the bill includes provisions that would authorize the RCMP to establish and administer a publicly accessible national database of high-risk child sex offenders. Essentially this would be a separate database that would centralize public access to certain information on high-risk child sex offenders who have already been the subject of a public notification in a provincial or territorial jurisdiction.

In conclusion, these changes would allow us to further deliver on some of the worthy commitments we have made to Canadians, namely to ensure that those who break the law are punished accordingly for their actions, that penalties match the severity of the crimes, and that the rights of the victims come before the rights of the criminals. Above all, these changes would allow us to better shelter children, both in Canada and abroad, from the horrific crime of child sexual exploitation.

Therefore, I call on members of all parties in this House for their support of this very worthy measure.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Tougher Penalties for Child Predators Act
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March 27, 2015

Mr. Maurice Vellacott

Mr. Speaker, of course that is the highest task and demand of a government: to protect its own citizens in various ways. The hon. member for Yukon well makes the point that we need to be doing that. We need to be making sure that our citizens are protected and we are taking the kinds of measures that send a very strong message, an incentive or inducement, I guess, to many others to avoid that. However, as he also alluded to, there is no question that we need to do what we can on the prevention side.

Our government is trying to get at both of those aspects. Any responsible government will look at the preventive aspects, how it can prevent people from getting into situations in the first place. That is a whole other kettle of fish, as we have said. The use of the Internet is a big part of that problem, and we need to work with providers so that some of this is shut down.

As my colleague rightly makes the point, we need to provide those kinds of measures in the Criminal Code that provide punishment and send the message. We have done this with this thicker bill, and others as well. I thank the member for the good work he has done throughout his riding and in respect of these kinds of measures. I know he has pushed them hard and supports them, and I thank him for that.

Topic:   Government Orders
Subtopic:   Tougher Penalties for Child Predators Act
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