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Bill 17 Essay

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The Court Security Amendment Act 2017, Bill 17, introduced in the 41st legislature of the Manitoba Assembly sought to amend the previous act. It granted more rights to the sheriffs and guards of the court. This bill allowed the security officers to conduct searches for liquor, illegal drugs and weapons. Along with the searching of the aforementioned items, the security staff would then be allowed to seize the prohibited items for the security of the courts. They were also granted the rights to deny entry to the courthouse based on a reasonable suspicion for two reasons. Firstly, the person denied entry has declined the security screening for the prohibited items including weapons. Secondly, if the person has been screened and does a…show more content…
The second point of contention with this bill arose out of concerns with the power granted to the security. More specifically Andrew Swan is concerned with the re-entry of barred persons, questioning if there will be an appeal process to regain entry via an independent third party, “[I]t's her intention that there be no other objective look or appeal process” (Hansard, 22 Mar 2017, p. 902). This essentially is a concern about the amount of discretion given to the officers, as it could be misused, and people may be barred based on prejudices some security officers may have, “[The Minister of Justice] is conflating the idea of security with the ability to simply prevent someone from being able to be there.” (Hansard, 22 Mar 2017, p. 903). Similar concerns that arose during the second reading are brought up once more in the committee meeting. Andrew Swan again advocates that the discretion given could be problematic, as well as including marijuana on the prohibited list could eventually be problematic, as people with medical conditions requiring medical marijuana may be unable to access the courts. By giving the security officers the power to remove people from the courthouse it could be due to a lack of knowledge or nerves brought on by the courts themselves, “I wouldn't want someone's bad day in court to wind up preventing them from having the usual broad access
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