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Why get a pardon?

Why should I get a pardon?

The answer to this question should be self-evident but I receive so many calls at the National Pardon Centre that I am confronted, on a somewhat regular basis, by people who do not see the value of a Canadian pardon. I find it unsettling because these people will invariably see the value of a pardon once it begins to affect their life. In many cases the effects are permanent. Perhaps the person lost a job, was permanently banned from the United States or could not adopt a child.

It can even be as simple as a ban from volunteering with a child’s little league team. The point is that it doesn’t matter what your motivations are, it just matters that you clear your name. A pardon is important because there is no shortage of ways a criminal record can affect your life.

The bottom line is that we have all made mistakes in our lives. And for some people (current studies suggest up to 35% of the population) those mistakes come with the penalty of a criminal record filed by the RCMP, the courts and any local police involved when the charges were laid. The result is a detailed trail of criminal activity and a label beside your name that says “criminal”. In most cases it doesn’t matter what the crime was, it only matters that a crime was committed.

Now let me make this perfectly clear. THERE IS NO OTHER COUNTRY WITH A PARDON PROGRAM LIKE CANADA’S. If you live in Canada you live in a country where you are allowed to be pardoned. The system is not biased, it does not favour anyone. It has no interest based on personal or political connections, race, religion, education or any other defining characteristic. It is a surprisingly fair and humane program that we should be proud to have.

Here in Canada we believe that people can change for the better and that rehabilitation works. It is a principle the pardon program was created for and one we all feel strongly about here at the National Pardon Centre. If you need help moving forward you’ve found the right place. We are here to help you get clear the record of past mistakes!

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