BC Civil Liberties Association seeks Intervener Status in
A copy of their
Here is a few points:
2. The British Columbia Civil Liberties Association ("BCCLA") specifically seeks leave to make written and oral submission on the proper interpretation and constitutional status of sections 13 and 54 of the Canadian Human Rights Act (the "Act"). As well, the BCCLA seeks standing to introduce evidence and to receive and reply to all other parties' arguments and evidence regarding the proper interpretation of sections 13 and 54 and seeks standing to cross-examine witnesses. At present, the BCCLA does not seek standing to call witnesses.
Position of the BCCLA Regarding Section 13 of the Act
3. If the BCCLA were to receive intervenor standing in this matter, we would argue that sections 13 and 54 of the Act infringe ss. 2(b), 7 and 11 (d) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and that these infringements cannot be justified under s. 1 of the Charter.
Position to be Taken by the BCCLA if Granted Leave to Intervene
18. The BCCLA's submissions will present its views of the proper interpretation and constitutional status of sections 13 and 54 of the Act. The BCCLA's position is:
• Section 13 of the Act unreasonably infringes on freedom of expression as guaranteed under s. 2(b) of the Charter.
• Sections 13 and 54(1)(c) create a criminal offence without providing the respondent with the defences common to analogous criminal offences or requiring proof beyond a reasonable doubt, proof of a culpable mental state (or mens rea), or a strict application of the rules of evidence and accordingly violate the respondent's rights under ss.7 and I I(d) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
• Section 13 creates an arbitrary distinction whereby an individual may be denied his/her rights under ss. 2(b) and 7 on the basis of using the internet or intranet as a medium of expression as opposed to other forms of media.
• The infringements of ss. 2(b), 7 and 11(d) are not saved by s. 1 of the Charter because the measures adopted are not rationally connected to the objective of the legislation and they fail to impair the abridged rights as minimally as possible.
20. Consequently, the BCCLA will submit that s. 13 of the Act is unconstitutional and inconsistent with the Charter in its capacity to restrict freedom of expression in a private context and s. 54(l)(c) of the Act is unconstitutional and inconsistent with the Charter in its capacity to criminalize certain communications broadcast by internet and intranet media. The BCCLA will submit that ss. 13 and 54(1)(c) of the Act should be struck on the basis that they are unconstitutional.
Full copy of the BCCLA motion [here]
Press Release Sent
CENSORSHIP ON TRIAL: CIVIL LIBERTIES ASSOCIATION APPLIES TO INTERVENE IN I
But the big question still remains.. where is Borovoy and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. He has been getting press from coast to coast talking about the CHRC, but where is he? In they won’t intervene at the most important juncture on a serious challenge of the validity of Section 13.. IF NOT NOW…. WHEN?
Groups, Writers and
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (Rex
CDN Association of Journalists
B'nai Brith Jewish Tribune
Lawyer Karen Selick
David Warren (Ottawa Citizen)
Constitutional Challenge of Section 13