Bill S-251, An Act to repeal section 43 of the Criminal Code (Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's call to action number 6) is a piece of legislation that was introduced by Senator Kutcher in the Senate in 2022.
Children and youth are the only people under Canadian law who are not legally protected from assault. When passed, Bill S-251 would extend this protection to children. It also addresses the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's call to action number 6 and allows Canada to meet its human rights obligation to support the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
"Repeal of section 43 is a necessary step in our continued evolution toward the type of society we strive to be — one that provides safe and secure environments for the next generations to grow and to thrive. It is a society that is working on acknowledging and righting historical wrongs, a society that puts the welfare of its children as a top priority, a society that stands up for those who are not yet able to stand on their own."
Corporal punishment is the use of physical violence to discipline children. Spanking and hitting are examples of corporal punishment.
CALL TO ACTION #6
Call to action number 6 from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's final report directly calls on the Government to repeal section 43 of the Criminal Code of Canada.
SECTION 43 OF THE CRIMINAL CODE
Section 43 of the Criminal Code has been used as a legal defense for parents and guardians who use physical violence against children.
Repeal of section 43 of the Criminal Code would help Canada meet its obligations to support the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Speeches by Senators About Bill S-251
Click the icons below to watch Senators' speeches in the chamber.
Letters of Support
A selection of letters from experts, academics, teachers, parents, children, and notable organizations sent to Senator Kutcher in support of Bill S-251.
Learn More About Repeal
Webinar with Jimmy Thunder on Call to Action #6
Presentation by Dr. Joan Durrant and Cheryl Milne
Live on Bill S-251 with No Violence Against Kids Canada
ENGAGE WITH SENATOR KUTCHER
Are you a school, youth group, or young person who wants to engage with this issue in parliament? Reach out to our office to discover how you can get involved.
WRITE IN SUPPORT OF Bill S-251
Tell us why this issue is important to you. Postage is free. Our mailing address is at the bottom of this page. Or, send Senator Kutcher an email.
WRITE AN OP-ED
Write a letter to the editor or an opinion piece in a newspaper, magazine, or community-based journal in support of Bill S-251 and banning corporal punishment.