What Canadians witnessed during the G20 summit in June 2010 in Toronto was a sad and dark moment in Canada’s history. The largest mass arrests in Canadian history were carried out with a flagrant disregard for human rights and civil liberties as well as the basic rule of law. This report explores these events.
In recent years, we at the Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) have become increasingly concerned about the frequency and ease with which laws with clear constitutional vulnerabilities have been proposed and passed by Parliament — only to be challenged later, and, in some cases, be struck down by the courts for violating the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. This report, and CCLA’s broader Charter First campaign, seek to address what we believe are critical accountability and transparency gaps in our federal lawmaking process that can enable the advancement of unconstitutional laws.
In 2010 alone, Calgary and Edmonton police ran over 140,000 individual Background checks. While most of these checks are used to inform employment and volunteer hiring decisions, they are also frequently performed in connection with adoptions, foster care applications and travel.
The Canadian Civil Liberties Association submits this brief to the Members of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (“Committee”), in connection with the review of Canada’s sixth periodic report. CCLA’s briefing corresponds directly to the List of Issues set out by the Committee (E/C.12/CAN/Q/6). While CCLA has focused on select issues only, it is our view that all issues contained in the Committee’s List of Issues are vital to the creation of conditions in Canada whereby all persons can enjoy their economic, social, and cultural rights as well as their civil and political rights.
When dealing with the police, it’s important to know what your rights are. CCLA has put together a manual to help you know what you must do, what you do not have to do, and what you may wish to do in situations involving the police.
Over the past number of years, crowd-control weapons (CCWs) are increasingly being used in responding to popular protests. In a joint report "Lethal in Disguise: The Health Consequences of Crowd-Control Weapons", International Network of Civil Liberties Organizations (INCLO) and Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) have documented the health consequences of these weapons. The report aims to raise awareness about the misuse and abuse of CCWs, the detrimental health effects that these weapons can have, and the impact of their use on the meaningful enjoyment of freedom of assembly and expression. It also seeks to foster a global debate to develop international standards and guidelines on the use of CCWs with the ultimate goal of preventing injury, disability and death by providing information on these weapons and insisting on their safe use.
The Fundamentals of our Fundamental Freedoms: a primer on civil liberties and democracy by A. Alan Borovoy.
CCLA's shadow report to the UN Human Rights Committee on the occasion of the sixth periodic review of Canada.
CCLA's report to the UN Committee Against torture
This report offers a ground-level view of some of the ways surveillance, and digital electronic surveillance in particular, is impacting on the lives of citizens and residents in Canada, as well as in countries in Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Separately, these stories describe concrete instances in which governments have used surveillance to violate civil and human rights. Together, they challenge the notion that digital and more traditional surveillance operations are harmless intrusions and that these tools are being used in democratic countries with adequate restraint and oversight.