MPP's bill fights drug exposure to youth 0
Simcoe North MPP Garfield Dunlop is bringing forward a Private Member's bill that could make exposing youth to illegal drug production a form of child abuse.
The bill would give police and child protection workers another tool to protect children growing up where illegal drugs like marijuana and crystal meth are manufactured, he said.
"In a lot of cases it's very dangerous, there have been major fires and health issues, as well," Dunlop said. "There's chemicals used that can cause lung issues and even cancer."
The bill would amend the Child and Family Services Act by adding drug endangered children as a category of children in need of protection. The bill would also make it an offence to drug-endanger a child, by adding it as a form of child abuse.
It would also include protection for children exposed to production of any and all illegal drugs defined in Canada's Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
"It's an opportunity for police to step in and say there will be a severe fine, or even extra time in jail because of the way they treat kids in these situations," Dunlop said.
The Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police passed a resolution a year ago asking for the government's support in this plan, Dunlop said.
"The government really hasn't done anything with it, they kind of looked at it and said we'll think about it sometime," he said. "The police feel they need it, so I'm with them."
Dunlop is the critic for community safety and works closely with police stakeholders, he said.
"I think it's important if the chiefs of police agreed to this that they need this kind of tool to help them do their job," Dunlop said.