Category Freedom of Expression

Submission on Bill 156

On June 8th, I appeared before the Standing Committee on General Government of the Ontario Legislative Assembly to speak in opposition to Bill 156, the Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, 2020.  Unfortunately, the hearing was not live-streamed. Here is a an expanded version of my presentation.


Ontario Campus Freedom of Expression Policies

Algoma University, “Algoma University Freedom of Expression Policy” Brock University, “Freedom of Expression Policy” Carleton University, “Freedom of Speech Policy” Lakehead University, “Free Expression Policy” Laurentian University, “Policy on the Freedom of Speech Laurentian University McMaster University, “Freedom of Expression, Protest and Dissent; Guidance for Event Organizers and Participants” Nipissing University, “Free Speech Policy” OCAD […]

BC Court of Appeal overturns injunction against film critical of Vancouver Aquarium

In a case raising serious implications for documentary filmmakers over freedom of expression, contracts and copyright issues, the British Columbia Court of Appeal has overturned an injunction issued by a lower BC provincial court against the distribution of a documentary film made by the defendant Gary Charbonneau. (Vancouver Aquarium v Charboneau, 2017 BCCA 395) Charbonneau created […]

Joint Letter on Bill C-59

Here is the text of the joint public letter that was sent to the federal government about Bill C-59 (An Act respecting national security matters). The bill seeks to respond to Bill C-51. The letter (which I signed) sets out the concerns of over 40 organizations and individuals. It concludes: “We recognize that Bill C-59 […]

Bill C-51 cannot be salvaged; it must be scrapped

The following is the text of a letter sent to the PM today from a group of organizations and individuals on Bill C-51: Bill C-51 cannot be salvaged; it must be scrapped The Right Honourable Stephen Harper, P.C., M.P., Prime Minister of Canada Office of the Prime Minister 80 Wellington Street Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2 […]

SCC Upholds Union’s Expression Rights over Privacy Challenge

The Supreme Court of Canada has  issued a unanimous decision dismissing an appeal brought by the Alberta Information and Privacy Commissioner in Alberta (Information and Privacy Commissioner) v. United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 401 (2013 SCC 62).  The judgment of the unanimous Court delivered by Justices Abella and Cromwell  was a sweeping endorsement of […]

AUCC’s nine-pack of Fair Dealing Guidelines

The full text of the 9 revised AUCC Fair Dealing Guidelines have now been posted online on the SCRIBD website (links at  and at the University of Calgary library.  I’m curious as to why AUCC does not just post them on their own website.  Why is the task of disseminating these important documents to […]

Libel action against McMaster librarian raises Academic Freedom issues

InsideHigherEd has confirmed that Edwin Mellen Press has filed libel actions in Ontario Superior Court against Dale Askey, a librarian at McMaster University and the University. The action is based on a 2010 review about the publisher that Askey posted on his on his blog. The review assessed the quality of the Mellon’s books, which […]

UWO President asked to reconsider campus ban on activists

In a letter  dated April 17th, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association has asked the President of the University of Western Ontario to reconsider a decision to ban two community activists from the Western campus on account of their participation in a demonstration last February. The letter stated that: