Category:Position Papers

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Contents

Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act

Whistleblowers are to be generally protected, unless (with a few extreme exceptions) they go to Members of Parliament, the media, or to the public with their complaints. Ad IDEM has made a submission to the House of Commons that would free whistleblowers to exercise their freedom of expression more fully, in accordance with existing law balancing their freedom of expression and their duty of loyalty. We would give them a more general "public interest" defence. See: Ad IDEM Presentation on C-25. See Bill C-25.

Publication Ban Procedure

Its been over five years since the Supreme Court of Canada held in Dagenais v. CBC that a judge hearing an application for a discretionary or common law publication ban should direct that the media be given advance notice to participate in the hearing. Now, Ad IDEM has developed its own proposal to implement the ruling procedurally. See: Publication Ban Procedure. Ad IDEM will soon be asking justice officials across Canada to review the proposal and address its recommendations. --- In Nova Scotia, a new plan has been developed through their Media-Courts Liaison Committee to assist all concerned with delivering and receiving the necessary notice electronically. Those wanting notice will register their e-mails, and those delivering notice will have the option of delivering it electronically to all those registered.

Freedom of Information Review

The federal government is studying the Freedom of Information Act to see what changes are warranted. Its Access to Information Review Task Force asked for submissions. Ad IDEM's submission, along with others it received, is now posted on its website. Time will tell what direction the task force recomendations will take.

Youth Criminal Justice Act

Bill C-7, the Youth Criminal Justice Act, passed the House of Commons, and had first reading in the Senate on May 30, 2001: Ad IDEM had concerns about this bill before, and while some improvements were made in response to our submissions, many of our concerns remain: foremost among them being trials with potential adult sentences without public identification of the person on trial until a sentence is imposed. See Bill C-7 for yourself, and the provisions dealing with publication and access to records. See our previous communique on last session's bill.

Ontario Libel and Slander Act: Limitations period

There will be no amendment to the limitation provisions of the Ontario Libel and Slander Act... When the amendments were finally announced to the Limitations Act, the Libel and Slander Act was left untouched. Ad IDEM took the position that no changes should be made to its notice and limitations provisions without careful consideration of the overall scheme of libel law. The AG's original proposals would have undermined the goal of encouraging timely retractions in the name of symmetry with other limitation provisions. Our position was set out in our Limitations Submission.

Bill C-79 - Victims of Crime - New Publication Bans

May 13, 1999 - Ad IDEM President Brian Rogers testified before the Standing Committee on a panel that included a delegation from CBC: Daniel Henry and Esther Enkin (Chief Journalist, CBC English Radio). The Canadian Newspaper Association was invited but submitted a brief, in lieu of appearing in person. Only two other organizations were invited to appear, Canadian Resource Centre for Victims, and MADD. No other public hearings were scheduled.

The hearing began with only three members of the 16 member committee present, Jacques Saada, Chuck Cadman, and Eleni Bakopanos. Two more, Derek Lee, and John Maloney, Chair of the Committee, appeared much later. Chuck Cadman, Jacques Saada and Derek Lee asked questions. Those present expressed appreciation for the submissions made, and we were assured that they would be reviewed by the Committee as a whole.

Read the Brief. It touches on:

  • Ad IDEM
  • Definition of "Victim"
  • Identifying Information
  • Test for Granting Discretionary Ban
  • Notice of Hearing
  • Statutory Ban on Publishing About Successful Applications
  • Absence of a Statutory Appeal
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