May 102017
Section 43 of the criminal code allows the use of physical force on children

Section 43 of the Criminal Code of Canada authorises parents and caregivers to use force in the “correction” of children. This is contrary to the Peace Testimony of Friends, and contravenes the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child that Canada has ratified.
CFSC is concerned with the effect Section 43 has on children, who may perpetuate this cycle of violence in their own lives as adults. The 6th Call to Action of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission called for the repeal of this section of the Criminal Code, due to its effect on at-risk youth.
Accordingly, Senator Murray Sinclair has introduced Senate Bill S-206 to repeal Section 43. The bill currently stands at second reading, and is likely to proceed to review by a senate committee. Should it pass third reading, it will be referred to the House of Commons which would also need to pass it in order for the bill to become law.
CFSC has written a letter to all senators, calling on them to support Bill S-206. We ask Monthly Meetings and individual Friends to consider writing their own letters of support. As resources, we have supplied:

  • a copy of the CFSC letter;
  • email addresses for all senators;
  • a copy of the statement made by Senator Sinclair upon introducing this bill;
  • a link to a government web page with background information on Section 43 and previous attempts to challenge its constitutionality; and
  • a template letter provided by a coalition partner.


CFSC’s letter
Download CFSC’s letter on Bill S-206.

The email addresses of all Canadian senators

Address message to:

The statement made by Senator Sinclair about this bill
Download Senator Sinclair’s statement.
Section 43 of the criminal code allows the use of physical force on children

The Government of Canada page with background about Section 43

A template letter

Download this template letter in Microsoft Word format. Download this template letter in PDF.
If Friends or Meetings feel moved to write letters, CFSC would appreciate copies that we can share with our coalition partners who are keeping track of support on this matter.
Learn more about penal abolition.