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SOC216H5 (36)

The Unfinished Work of the Canadian Sentencing Commission.docx

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Nicole Myers

The Unfinished Work of the Canadian Sentencing Commission Sociology of Law (pg 299) Through Jean-Paul Brodeur’s search on sentencing in 1984 (Canadian Sentencing Commission) “the Commission” it is evident that there are many problems both politically and practically with regards to sentencing in Canada that to this day have not been addressed properly. Sentencing problems identified by the Commission “Lack of systematic information about sentencing” (Commission Report 1987:60)  Still in today’s day cannot get information on; what kids of sentences given for specific offences, where an offender was sentenced, was he or she held in pre-trial custody…  Ironically Statistics Canada does a random survey in which they ask “In general would you say that sentences handed down by the courts are too severe, about right or not severe enough?” (Statistics Canada 2005:91) o How can Canadians have accurate opinions on this topic if there is no available data? “The absence of an adequate penalty structure: Maximum penalties” (Commission Report 1987:63)  Maximum penalties carry no guidelines to judged – misinform public o Ex. Max sentence (life) can range from B&E, armed robbery, manslaughter but are also grouped together with possession of counterfeit money and living under avails of a person under 18  Public assumes equal seriousness Mandatory minimum sentences  Mandatory min sentences should be eliminated other than for murder and high treason  “Mandatory minimum sentenc
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