Ministers agree on need for law reforms to speed justice in courts

Federal and provincial justice ministers have agreed on a need for legal reforms to help get the court system move faster.

The ministers have agreed, following a day-long meeting today, that there should be changes to mandatory minimum penalties, bail and preliminary hearings, among other things.

Federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould says officials have been told to develop recommendations on legal changes and report back to the next ministers' meeting, which has been moved ahead to September from October.

Quebec Justice Minister Stephanie Vallee says the meeting was positive for all and points the way ahead.

The meeting was called to address a court backlog that became critical after the Supreme Court of Canada ruled last year that a person accused of a crime has the right to have the case heard within 18 to 30 months.

The federal government has already promised to review 72 mandatory minimum penalties in the Criminal Code, many of them introduced by the former Conservative government.