About us

Since 1964, the CCLA has passionately defended the fundamental human rights and civil liberties of all Canadians through:
  • Public Education
  • Litigation
  • Citizen’s Engagement
  • Monitoring and Research

CCLET presents:

"That's Not Fair!"

An animated series of videos, online games, and lesson plans to introduce children ages 7-11 to critical thinking and the habits of democracy. Read more...
The Canadian Civil Liberties Association and Education Trust have created a guide to LGBTQ rights in schools. This resource will help students, allies, and teachers better understand students’ rights, and how to take positive action toward making schools a safer place for all. Click here to read the full guide


Since the early 1990s, the Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust has developed a unique approach to teaching civil liberties in the classroom. The organization provides free workshops and seminars in schools and educational institutions to teach citizens about social justice, their rights and freedoms.Read more...

Fundamental Freedoms

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects those freedoms that are considered fundamental in a democratic society. These freedoms include:
  • Freedom of Expression
  • Freedom of Association
  • Freedom of Assembly
  • Freedom of Religion
  • Freedom of Information

Public Safety

The CCLA monitors the legal and policy frameworks that govern policing and the administration of justice in Canada to ensure that they are sufficiently respectful of civil liberties and Charter rights. This program includes:
  • Police Powers
  • Police Accountability
  • Privacy and Policing
  • Liberty and Due-Process

National Security

Through litigation and advocacy, CCLA works for accountability and compliance with Canada"s legal obligations. The key issues are:
  • Privacy & National Security
  • Fair Trial & Due Process
  • Absolute Prohibition Against Torture
  • Security Certificates


The equality program concerns all forms of discrimination, and seeks to promote fairness and equality in Canada. The following groups fall within the CCLA program:
  • Disability
  • Gender
  • Immigration
  • LGBT
  • Race / Ethnicity / Religion
  • Socioeconomic Status
  • Youth

Recent Work

Recent Posts

RSS Rights Watch

  • Class action plaintiffs lose at Nova Scotia’s highest court, ordered to pay costs to government defendants October 31, 2014
    The Nova Scotia Court of Appeal delivered its decision on costs in a major class action lawsuit last week. The class action, which was first initiated about a decade ago, sought redress for environmental contamination allegedly caused by the governments’ decades long operation of the Sydney Steel plant. Last year, the provincial and federal governments […]
  • Yukon First Nations Threaten Court Action Over Bill S-6 October 31, 2014
    Yukon First Nations have raised concerns and threatened legal action over Bill S-6. According to the introductory remarks of the Honourable Daniel Lang, the bill proposes to “amend two existing statutes, the Yukon Environmental and Socio-Economic Assessment Act, which governs the environmental assessment framework in Yukon, and the Nunavut Waters and Nunavut […]
  • Impact of Canadian Mining Activities on Latin American Countries Under Scrutiny October 31, 2014
    This week the Inter American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) heard the case on the impact of Canadian mining activities on human rights in Latin America. The hearing, which was presented by the Justice and Corporate Accountability Project highlighted the Canadian government’s failure to meet its international obligations to prevent harms related to Canadi […]
  • No Damages for Violation of Official Language Rights on International Flights October 30, 2014
    The Supreme Court has ruled that an Ottawa couple is not entitled to damages from Air Canada for failing to provide service in French in the airport and on three international flights. The couple flew Air Canada several times over the course of four months and on several occasions there were either no flight attendants […]
  • Water Shut Off in Detroit Hurting “The Most Vulnerable” October 30, 2014
    Detroit has been facing an unimaginable situation: in the past nine months, the municipality has shut off water services to over 27, 000 of its residents. The City chose this course of action in response to its residents’ inability to pay their bills, and as an attempt to reduce the utility company’s multi-million dollar debt. […]


Icon of information logo - capital i Key Reports

Canadian Civil Liberties Association Releases Report, “Set Up to Fail: Bail and the Revolving Door of Pre-trial Detention”

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) has released a report: Set Up to Fail: Bail and the Revolving Door of Pre-trial Detention, which questions the extensive rise in pre-trial custody populations and identifies the extreme personal and financial costs of current practices in Canadian bail courts.

Download the full report, Set Up to Fail: Bail and [...]


Canada’s Universal Periodic Review

On April 26 Canada will undergo its second Universal Periodic Review (UPR), a unique global accountability process that allows all members of the UN Human Rights Council to review Canada’s compliance with international human rights law.  CCLA believes this is an important process and was pleased to participate in a pre-session with states allowing us [...]


Audio Audio

AUDIO: CCLA’s NGO Report To The UN For Canada’s 2nd UPR Review

CCLA’s Sukanya Pillay, Director of the National Security Program, speaks to RCI’s Wojtek Gwiazda about CCLA’s recent report to the UN – the rights of refugees, asylum seekers, and migrant workers, the right to peaceful protest, and  the number of Aboriginal women in Canadian prisons, are some of the issues raised by CCLA as part [...]

Icon of camera Video

CCLA partners with #G20Romp on post-show panel discussions!

Watch the above video to hear from CCLA’s Director of Public Safety Abby Deshman on G20 Toronto, policing at protests and You Should Have Stayed Home.

CCLA is partnering with Praxis Theatre throughout their National Tour of You Should Have Stayed Home, a performance piece about the largest peacetime mass arrest in Canadian history. Written by Tommy Taylor, the play [...]