2018 Annual Meeting Press Release
ULCC Concludes its 100th Annual Meeting
Québec City, QC – The Uniform Law Conference of Canada (ULCC), a government-supported organization that works to modernize and harmonize federal, provincial and territorial laws and considers proposals to reform criminal laws, held its 100th Annual Meeting in Québec city, Québec from August 12 to 16, 2018. The ULCC is comprised of a Civil Section and a Criminal Section.
It was appropriate for the ULCC to hold the 100th anniversary of its annual meeting in the province of Québec since the first meeting ever held in 1918 was also in this province, more precisely in Montréal. The Québec Ministry of Justice is proud that the 100th anniversary has been held in the Old City and to welcome the ULCC representatives and their guests. The ULCC is thankful for its partners’ financial support in the organization of the event. These are the Ministère de la Justice du Québec, the Ministère du Conseil exécutif, Ville de Québec, the Barreau du Québec, the Chambre des notaires du Québec and the faculty of law of Université Laval.
This week, the ULCC’s Civil Section adopted in principle a new Uniform Commercial Tenancies Act, which is intended to be a complete uniform code for commercial tenancies in Canada’s common law jurisdictions. The Act will consolidate, update and clarify statutory provisions affecting commercial tenancies found in different statutes in each jurisdiction. The Civil Section also adopted Uniform Electronic Document Rules which will harmonize rules governing the electronic production of documents in civil and administrative proceedings.
The Civil Section heard reports on the rise of legislation across Canada aimed at addressing the non-consensual distribution of intimate images and a review of certain uniform Acts that implement international conventions.
The ULCC’s Criminal Section debated and voted on proposals to amend the Criminal Code and related statutes. This week, it considered 30 resolutions relating to youth criminal justice, firearms, various aspects of criminal procedure including Identification of Criminals Act reform, bail, DNA and mandatory minimum penalties.
The Criminal Section also received working group reports regarding telewarrant procedure, section 9 of the Canada Evidence Act regarding the ability of a party to confront and lead its own witness, and regarding reform to section 490 of the Criminal Code, the detention of seized property regime and a presentation from the DPCP regarding the independence, accountability, discretionary power and professional autonomy of prosecutors.
At a joint session of the Civil and Criminal Sections, a new Uniform Police Record Checks Act was adopted. The new Act standardizes the types of criminal record checks that may be provided, places limits on the disclosure of non-conviction information and creates procedural protections including appeal and reconsideration processes to correct inaccurate information and challenge irrelevant information disclosed in criminal record checks. The joint session also received a report on costs awards under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and civil charge damages against the Crown arising from criminal prosecutions.
Delegates to the ULCC are legal experts appointed by the 14 member governments (federal, 10 provincial, 3 territorial). They include prosecutors, lawyers and notaries from the governments and private practice, members of the judiciary, law professors, the Canadian Bar Association, the Barreau du Québec, the Chambre des notaires du Québec, Indigenous Bar Association, Aboriginal Legal Services and law reform institutes. Over 100 participants attended this year’s Annual Meeting, including the current and several former Presidents of the United States Uniform Law Commission. The ULCC was founded in 1918 and over the years has recommended the implementation of numerous Uniform Acts and other law reform initiatives. Those recommendations have often been enacted into law by federal, provincial and territorial governments.
Manon Dostie, Past President of the Uniform Law Conference of Canada