Table of contents

Status: The Provincial Court Amendment Act received royal assent on May 31, 2022
Ministries responsible: Justice and Solicitor General, Culture and Status of Women

Overview

The Provincial Court Amendment Act (formerly Bill 14) reduces the risk of victims of sexual violence being re-victimized during trials and ensures that all people who come into the courtroom are treated respectfully and fairly.

The act requires provincial court judge applicants to complete sexual assault law and social context issues education to be eligible for appointment.

This education would foster stronger confidence in the administration of justice and encourage more reporting of sexual assaults and potentially greater engagement in the justice system by victims, Indigenous Peoples, and people from minority and vulnerable populations.

The federal government and Prince Edward Island have legislation requiring judicial candidates to agree to complete this type of education after appointment. Manitoba also introduced similar legislation in November 2021.

Key changes

The Provincial Court Amendment Act:

  • requires provincial court judge applicants to complete sexual assault law and social context issues education
  • requires candidates on the appointment eligibility list when the amendments come into effect to complete the education or promise to complete it after appointment

Next steps

The Provincial Court Amendment Act will take effect upon proclamation.

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