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Hon. Yonah Martin: Honourable senators, in these times of global economic recession, our government's first priority is to protect Canadian jobs.

Conservatives believe in tackling the global recession, but we also believe in tackling crime, and we will not back down from our commitment to safer streets.

That is why the Minister of Justice has instructed the department to draft legislation that would, if passed by Parliament, cap the credit for time served.

Our party campaigned on a promise to restrict courts from giving extra credit for pretrial custody, and action is clearly needed. Right now, convicted criminals can receive "two for one" or even "three for one" credit for time served prior to conviction.

Honourable senators, this initiative is just the latest action we have taken to make our communities safer for working families.

Our government cracked down on street racing, a crime that all too often kills. We invested $64 million in a National Anti-Drug Strategy and $16.1 million to protect youth at risk. We also invested in 1,000 new RCMP personnel, and we are working with the provinces, territories and municipalities to put more front-line officers on our streets. We raised the age of protection to protect young people from sexual predators. We restricted house arrest sentencing for serious crimes, toughened the bail rules and required mandatory jail time for serious gun crimes.

Honourable senators, Canadians need to know they are safe in their homes and communities, and that when justice is served it is served swiftly. By getting tough on criminals with tougher sentences and more police, our government is making our streets safer and building a better Canada.

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