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On August 26th Justice Mosley released his decision in a motion, brought by the Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF), to compel further government disclosure in relation to the Emergencies Act litigation. The CCLA, which initiated its own court challenge days after the federal Emergencies Act was invoked, provided submissions to the court on this issue.  

Justice Mosley ruled that the additional documents requested by the CCF could not be disclosed because they were protected by cabinet privilege, and that the redactions grounded in cabinet privilege were valid. He also found, however, that further steps were necessary to adequately scrutinize the government’s other privilege claims, including redactions for solicitor-client privilege, national security, and public interest privilege. We are looking forward to the court’s detailed review of the government’s remaining privilege claims, and hope that further documents and information will be disclosed in the weeks to come. A hearing on the merits for this case is tentatively scheduled for this fall. 

CCLA’s submissions on the motion drew the court’s attention to the manner in which cabinet privilege has increasingly been used to prevent the disclosure of an increasingly broad category of government documents and information. We continue to be concerned about the impact of cabinet privilege on government transparency, oversight and judicial review – a viewpoint we will be bringing to the Supreme Court of Canada’s attention in our upcoming intervention in the Safe Third Countries Act case. 

Read Justice Mosley’s decision regarding cabinet privilege here. A decision regarding a second motion brought by the CCF to amend their notice of application and obtain further disclosure was also released on the same day – you can read it here. 

To find out more about CCLA’s submissions on cabinet privilege in this motion please read our web post here. 

About the Canadian Civil Liberties Association

The CCLA is an independent, non-profit organization with supporters from across the country. Founded in 1964, the CCLA is a national human rights organization committed to defending the rights, dignity, safety, and freedoms of all people in Canada.

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