Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, January 30, 1998.
CANADACanada is a constitutional monarchy with a federal parliamentary form of government and an independent judiciary. Citizens periodically choose their representatives in free and fair multiparty elections. Elected civilian officials control the federal, provincial, and municipal police forces. The armed forces have no role in domestic law enforcement except in national emergencies. Laws requiring the security forces to respect human rights are strictly observed, and violators are punished by the courts. Canada has a highly developed, market-based economic system. Laws extensively protect the well-being of workers and provide for workers' freedom of association. The Government generally respected the human rights of its citizens. However, there were occasional complaints in some areas, primarily regarding discrimination against aboriginals, the disabled, and women. The Constitution and laws provide avenues for legal redress of such complaints. The Government took serious steps to address violence against women, including the strengthening of antistalking laws.