Focus On



Wednesday, November 25, 2020 @ 9:45 AM

Ontario court gives green light to precedent-setting environmental case Nader Hasan sm

In a landmark victory for Canadian climate-change activists, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice has dismissed a bid by the Ontario government to shut down a lawsuit launched by seven young environmentalists alleging that weaker climate change legislation passed by Premier Doug Ford’s Conservatives violates the s. 7 and s. 15 Charter rights of the province’s youth and future generations. ... [read more]

Tuesday, November 24, 2020 @ 9:49 AM

New medical assistance in dying bill passes constitutional muster, justice minister says Justice Minister David Lametti

Canada’s justice minister is saying its new legislation on medical assistance in dying (MAiD) will pass the constitutional test, despite concerns that it may discriminate against people who are suffering from mental illness. ... [read more]

Friday, November 20, 2020 @ 5:42 PM

Ontario sex offender law invokes ‘prejudicial and stereotypical views’ about mentally ill: SCC Justice Andromache Karakatsanis

The Supreme Court has upheld a ruling which declared Ontario’s sex offender registry to be discriminatory against people who have been found not criminally responsible due to mental disorder and have also received an absolute discharge, a decision which also gives some updated guidance on when a court should impose a declaration of invalidity. ... [read more]

Monday, November 16, 2020 @ 8:02 AM

Despite setback, plaintiffs in climate constitutional challenge plan to move forward Chris Tollefson, Tollefson Law Corp.

Plaintiffs in a landmark case alleging the federal government’s response to greenhouse gases is a violation of their Charter rights are pledging to continue the fight despite a court loss which said their claim did not disclose a reasonable cause of action. In La Rose v. Canada 2020 FC 1008, Federal Court Justice Michael Manson granted the federal government’s motion to strike the statement of claim, writing that “there are some questions that are so political that the courts are incapable or unsuited to deal with them.” ... [read more]

Thursday, November 05, 2020 @ 5:31 PM

Charter protection from cruel and unusual punishment for humans, not corporations: SCC Russell_Brown_sm

In a case involving a Quebec construction company fined tens of thousands of dollars for doing work without a licence, the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that corporations cannot benefit from the Charter’s protection against cruel and unusual punishment — a right the justices found to be reserved for human beings. ... [read more]

Tuesday, November 03, 2020 @ 9:12 AM

COVID-19 gathering restrictions likely violate Charter, legal observers say Cara Zwibel, Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA)

As Canada deals with a “second wave” of COVID-19 cases as winter approaches and flu season ramps up, provincial governments have been taking steps that they contend will reduce exposure to the virus as a means of ensuring our hospitals will not be overwhelmed, such as restricting the number of people one can have in their home. ... [read more]

Tuesday, October 27, 2020 @ 9:45 AM

Ontario Appeal Court decision a victory for not criminally responsible accused: lawyers Jeff Marshman sm

The Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled that the Ontario government and the Ontario Review Board violated a man’s Charter right to liberty for the past six years by keeping him confined to a psychiatric hospital — even after his medical team and the board agreed in 2014 he could be moved into supportive housing in the community. ... [read more]

Wednesday, October 21, 2020 @ 4:08 PM

Civil liberties group to appeal border ban ruling in Newfoundland and Labrador Cara_Zwibel_sm

Canada’s civil rights watchdog is appealing a Newfoundland court’s ruling that the province was right to close its borders to non-essential entry in light of the COVID-19 health crisis. ... [read more]

Wednesday, October 21, 2020 @ 9:51 AM

Aesthetics do not trump freedom of expression, Alberta landowners say in appeal of sign bylaw James Kitchen, Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms

A group of landowners in Alberta is challenging a recent decision by the provincial Court of Queen’s Bench concerning signs on rural property that it says values aesthetics over constitutional guarantees of free expression. ... [read more]

Monday, October 19, 2020 @ 2:53 PM

End of opioid treatment program in Alberta violates Charter, patients argue

A group of patients participating in an Alberta drug therapy program aimed at treating people with serious opioid addiction issues are alleging the government has violated their constitutional rights by choosing not to continue funding their treatment, and is seeking the courts’ assistance to keep it going. ... [read more]