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Federal Conservatives vow to crack down on child sexual abuse if elected this fall

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer stands during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, May 8, 2019. Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is pledging to get tough on crime through the implementation of mandatory minimum sentences of five years for anyone convicted of abusing children. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Andrew Scheer promises to get tougher on criminals convicted of sexually abusing children if elected this fall

Federal Conservative leader vows to implement mandatory minimum sentences for those convicted of child sex abuse

OTTAWA (NEWS 1130) – In the lead up to the fall federal election, the Conservatives have unveiled their plan to address sexual abuse against children.

Calling them some of the most disturbing cases in our justice system, Tory Leader Andrew Scheer is vowing to crack down on sexual offences against children.

“A society is judged by how it protects its most vulnerable, and under the current government, Canada is failing,” he says.

If his party forms government in the fall, Scheer is promising to bring in a five year minimum sentence for anyone convicted of a serious sexual offence against a child, and to make the length and severity of the abuse aggravating factors that judges will have to take into account for sentencing.

He says wounds from sexual abuse last a lifetime, adding the penalty should “fit the crime” and that survivors need to be assured the federal government will ensure offenders are appropriately punished.

Scheer claims too many criminals are let out of prison after serving only months.

“In 2017, there were over 8,000 incidents of sexual violation against children in Canada,” he says. “In many cases, the details of what took place are too horrific to speak of.”

This announcement is a part of a broader range of promises the Conservative leader is making in the lead up to the October vote.

On Wednesday, he pledged funding for police, survivor services and public awareness to fight human trafficking, adding he will make changes to the Criminal Code to make it easier to convict people accused of it.

He’s also in the middle of a five-speech series to lay out his views on issues such as foreign policy, the economy and the environment.