Focus On



Thursday, January 28, 2021 @ 11:56 AM

Young people detained under B.C. mental health law not aware of legal rights, advocate says B.C. children and youth representative Jennifer Charlesworth

B.C.’s representative for children and youth is urging the province change its mental health legislation to better protect the interests of young people and ensure that they are aware of what steps they can take when they are involuntarily detained. ... [read more]

Thursday, January 28, 2021 @ 9:24 AM

Class action against segregation in B.C. jails given green light Ken McEwan, McEwan Associates

The B.C. Supreme Court has given the go-ahead to a class action against the use of segregation in the province’s jails. Naveah North, formerly Cody Alan Cragg, is representative plaintiff in the case, and has filed the action on behalf of inmates in provincial institutions who had been put in “separate confinement” at B.C. correctional centres between April 2005 and the present for at least 15 consecutive days, or who have been confined despite suffering from mental health issues. ... [read more]

Thursday, January 28, 2021 @ 6:13 AM

CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS - Fundamental freedoms - Freedom of expression 

Application by the media for a declaration that sections of the Court of Appeal’s Record and Courtroom Access Policy that applied to access to criminal appeal records were unconstitutional. ... [read more]

Wednesday, January 27, 2021 @ 2:39 PM

Saskatoon mental health court reduced recidivism but increased convictions: report

A new report has found that the Saskatoon Mental Health Strategy (MHS) Court has improved both the legal landscape for those appearing before it and helped address health issues for those individuals. Recidivism is down, so are trips to the emergency room. It said that more effort is required, however, to help ensure the court meets the needs of those appearing before it — and does not create more legal complications for them. ... [read more]

Wednesday, January 27, 2021 @ 8:27 AM

Systemic barriers to access to justice | Serena Eshaghurshan

“Access to justice” is a term used to denote the notion of a legal system that is responsive to the needs of all individuals. In other words, it means ensuring that all segments of society can access the legal system and related supports. It means that all people are treated equally under the law. However, it is an unfortunate reality that not everyone has the same degree of ease in accessing various components of the legal system. Certain socioeconomic disadvantages result in marginalized populations suffering from disproportionate rates of adversity and incarceration. ... [read more]

Wednesday, January 27, 2021 @ 6:08 AM

CRIMINAL CODE OFFENCES - Manslaughter - Aggravated assault - Attempts, conspiracies and accessories

Appeal by the Crown from Strathdee’s acquittal for manslaughter. Cross-appeal by Strathdee from conviction for aggravated assault. Strathdee and several others were involved in an assault on the occupant of an apartment. ... [read more]

Tuesday, January 26, 2021 @ 11:46 AM

Case could set precedent in determining social media giants’ liability for defamation: legal expert Howard Winkler, Winkler Dispute Resolution

A B.C. court has given the green light to a defamation action against social media giant Twitter, with a legal expert saying the case has the potential to settle a major unresolved issue in Canada — what is the liability of social media companies for comments users post online. ... [read more]

Tuesday, January 26, 2021 @ 11:30 AM

Putting faces to homelessness Homeless man sleeping

I’ve been a criminal lawyer in downtown Toronto for more than 30 years, and during that time I’ve defended all manner of people, from the super-rich to the poor and homeless. Being a criminal lawyer has given me a unique, front-row view of the city. In particular, the growing economic disparity in Toronto, and the too-often unseen world of the homeless. ... [read more]

Tuesday, January 26, 2021 @ 9:38 AM

Nova Scotia court to launch pilot for electronic filing by police

Changes made to operations due to the pandemic have prompted Nova Scotia’s provincial court to launch a pilot project in two urban centres that will allow police to fax criminal charges needing to be sworn. ... [read more]

Tuesday, January 26, 2021 @ 6:32 AM

SENTENCING - Manslaughter - Guilty plea - Addicts - Drugs

Appeal by the Crown from a global sentence of 15 years’ imprisonment imposed for manslaughter and home invasion. The respondent broke into a residence and stabbed the two occupants multiple times. He was charged with first degree murder but pleaded guilty to manslaughter. ... [read more]