General Synod 2001
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Resolution A075

Discipline Canon - amendment re burden of proof

This resolution was carried by a two-thirds majority in all orders.

moved by: Ronald Stevenson from the Diocese of Fredericton
seconded by: The Ven. Stuart Allan from the Diocese of Fredericton

Note: The mover and the seconder must be members of the General Synod and be present in the House when the resolution is before the synod for debate.


That Second Reading be given to the resolution that subsection 17(b) of Canon XVIII - Discipline - be amended to read:

b) presumed innocent until the commission of the offence by them is proved beyond a reasonable doubt.


Subsection 17(b) of Canon XVIII as enacted in 1992 provides that persons tried for ecclesiastical offences are entitled to be presumed innocent until the Commission of the offence is proved on a balance of probability. That is the evidentiary burden of proof that applies in the secular courts in civil cases. In 1995 the Diocesan Synod of Fredericton memorialized General Synod requesting that the burden be changed to the criminal burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt. An amendment to the Canon to accomplish that change was introduced and given first reading at the meeting of General Synod in 1998. The amendment was referred to the dioceses and provinces for consideration and is now presented for second reading.

Source: Diocese of Fredericton (name of committee, diocese, etc.)

Submitted by: Ronald Stevenson

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