Annual Proulx Roundtable - Sentencing in Canada: Do Canadian courts have sufficient guidance?

Monday, March 6, 2023 17:30to18:45
McGill Faculty of Law, Maxwell Cohen Moot Court (NCDH 100)

With Justice Patrick Healy (Court of Appeal of Quebec) Professor Julian Roberts (University of Oxford) Dean Marie-Eve Sylvestre (University of Ottawa) moderated by Professor Marie Manikis (McGill University)

Appellate review has been the principal mechanism of guidance in Canada for sentencing judges. Yet other models have been developed and implemented in other jurisdictions. This panel considers two alternative models: the traditional appellate review approach and guidance issued by an independent statutory authority – a Sentencing Commission. There will be three presentations followed by general discussion. Justice Healy will explore the role of the appellate courts at sentencing in Canada, with particular emphasis on the standard of review and the level of guidance. Professor Roberts will then discuss the alternative approach which has been adopted in England and Wales and several other common law jurisdictions. The Sentencing Council of England and Wales has issued offence-specific guidelines and guidelines addressing issues of relevance to all cases, including sentence reductions for a guilty plea. Dean Sylvestre will then explore the impact of both models on the sentencing of marginalized populations in Canada and the ability of the judiciary to innovate

Back to top