Bill C-270 would require verified age and consent in pornography

02 August 2022
Bill C-270 would require those making or distributing pornographic material for a commercial purpose to verify the age and consent of each person depicted. It would also make it illegal to distribute pornographic material if the person depicted has withdrawn their consent.
Bill C-270, known as the Stopping Internet Sexual Exploitation Act (SISE), is a private member’s bill introduced by MP Arnold Viersen on April 28, 2022.
The SISE Act would implement the second recommendation in the Ethics Committee report, Ensuring the Protection of Privacy and Reputation on Platforms such as Pornhub. In its hearings, the Ethics Committee heard from witnesses whose images had been posted on Pornhub without their knowledge or consent. Some of the witnesses whose images had been posted on Pornhub were minors as young as 13 years old at the time the image was taken. Other women did not know their partner had taken videos and pictures of them until they discovered their images were on Pornhub.
The Ethics Committee report recommended the government explore ways to hold commercial pornography sites accountable (as noted in this short EFC blog post from June 2021). In the EFC's February 2021 brief to the Ethics Committee, the EFC had recommended verifying age and consent as one way to prevent sexual exploitation before it takes place.
The EFC supports Bill C-270 and commends this effort to stop online sexual exploitation.