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Third Session, Thirty-Ninth Legislature

This version is based on the printed bill that was distributed in the Legislature after First Reading.   It is not the official version.   If accuracy is critical, you can obtain a copy of the printed bill from Statutory Publications or view the online bilingual version (PDF).

Bill 238

THE SERVICE ANIMALS PROTECTION ACT


Table of Contents Explanatory Note

(Assented to                                         )

HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, enacts as follows:

Definition

1           In this Act, "service animal" means an animal

(a) trained to be used by a person with a disability for reasons relating to his or her disability;

(b) trained to be used by a peace officer in the execution of his or her duties; or

(c) trained to be used by a person who is authorized by a peace officer to assist peace officers in their duties.

Offence — person interfering with service animal

2(1)        No person shall touch, feed, impede or interfere with a service animal, without lawful excuse or authority.

Offence — person allowing animal to interfere with service animal

2(2)        No person who owns an animal or has possession or control of an animal shall allow that animal to touch, impede or interfere with a service animal, without lawful excuse or authority.

Penalty

3           A person who contravenes section 2 is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction

(a) for a first offence, to a fine of not more than $5,000; and

(b) for a second or subsequent offence, to a fine of not more than $10,000.

Compensation order

4(1)        In addition to a penalty under section 3, the justice who convicts the person may order that the person pay compensation to the owner of the service animal, or any other person, for loss or damage suffered by the owner or other person as a consequence of the commission of the offence, in an amount that the court may determine.

Order filed in Court of Queen's Bench

4(2)        The owner or other person to whom compensation is payable under an order made under subsection (1) may file a certified copy of the order in the Court of Queen's Bench.  Once filed, it may be enforced as an order of that court.

Limitation

5           A prosecution under this Act may not be commenced later than one year after the day the alleged offence was committed.

C.C.S.M. reference

6           This Act may be referred to as chapter S90 of the Continuing Consolidation of the Statutes of Manitoba.

Coming into force

7           This Act comes into force on the day it receives royal assent.

Explanatory Note

This Bill protects service animals and the people who use them, such as persons with disabilities who have guide dogs, and police officers who use "sniffer dogs" in their duties.  The Bill makes it an offence to touch, feed, impede or interfere with a service animal, or to allow an animal to touch, impede or interfere with a service animal, without consent.

In addition to paying a fine, a person who is convicted of an offence can be ordered to pay compensation if the action causes loss or damage.