LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION                                                                                    CHEF DE L'OPPOSITION
March 31, 2004
Terry Lear
PO Box 22004, 300 Coxwell Avenue
Toronto, ON  M4L 3B6
Dear Terry Lear:
Thank you for your letter of February 26 regarding revising the Divorce Act.   I would like to take this opportunity to respond to your concerns.
As you may know, the Conservative Party of Canada is in the midst of a renewed policy development process.  We have just completed the first step in this process with the release of our interim policy document.  This document is a melding of those policy areas where the Canadian Alliance and the federal Progressive Conservatives had agreement.  Unfortunately, this policy document does not include a position on family-related issues like divorce and shared parenting.  This policy is still under review.
A final review of policies will be carried out at a convention with duly elected delegates from all ridings.  To be adopted at a first convention, policies will have to be approved under the double majority formula (a majority of delegates voting and a majority of delegates from a majority of provinces).  I would therefore encourage you to follow the policy development process of our new party, especially as it pertains to the issues raised in your letter.
Should you have any further questions or concerns about this matter, I would encourage you to contact our Justice critic, M.P. Vic Toews.  You may reach Mr. Toews by writing to him in care of the House of Commons, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6.
Thank you once again for taking the time to write.
Stephen Harper, M.P.
Leader of the Opposition
Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada