by Stephen Dafoe
Sturgeon River-Parkland MP Dane Lloyd introduced McCanns’ Law in the House of Commons Thursday, a Private Member Bill that will, if passed, support families of homicide victims. The Bill creates consequences for those convicted in the death or a person or persons who refuse to provide information on where the victim’s body or remains are.
The Private Member’s Bill takes its name from Lyle and Marie McCann of St. Albert, who went missing in the summer of 2010. Their killer, Travis Vader was convicted of manslaughter in 2017, received a life sentence for the crime, but is eligible for parole this year.
The McCann’s bodies have never been located and Vader has not given the location of their remains.
“By withholding where he left their bodies, Vader is able to continuously revictimize our family,” son Bret McCann said in a media release Thursday. “Without a proper funeral and memorial, our family was unable to fully grieve and reach some degree of closure.”
Under Canadian law, there are currently no requirements for sentencing judges or parole boards to consider an offender’s ongoing refusal to share information on the location of the remains of homicide victims.
Lloyd’s Bill would ensure authorities have the needed tools to provide justice and closure for victims’ families.
“This isn’t about being vindictive and punishing criminals. This is about giving the tools to our justice system to help families find the remains of their loved ones,” Lloyd said. “This legislation recognizes that Canada needs to do more to support victims of horrible crimes.”
MP Lloyd had introduced the Bill in 2019; however, it was not passed before the House broke for summer.