Martin: Conservative mandatory minimum sentences were aimed at indigenous Canadians: “Mandatory sentencing doesn’t work and mandatory sentencing is really…primarily aimed at indigenous Canadians,” Martin said to applause from members of the Liberal Party’s Indigenous Peoples Commission.
Speaking afterwards to reporters, Martin said mandatory minimums are at odds with the concept of restorative justice, which requires judges to exercise their discretion.
“Mandatory minimums just make that impossible. I don’t agree with mandatory minimums on principle and I think most people who understand the justice system don’t agree with it. It’s particularly onerous in the case of indigenous people.”
Indigenous and Northern Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett was also critical of the mandatory minimums adopted by the Conservatives.
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