The Power of Perspectives

The Canadian Bar Association

Kim Covert

CBA Influence

Past due: More time, consultation needed for prompt payment legislation

By Kim Covert November 28, 2017 28 November 2017


In a perfect world, no one would need a law to make them pay their bills on time.

In an imperfect world where such a law is apparently necessary, it’s best if that law is founded in extensive consultations with those it affects and doesn’t create more problems than it solves.

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CBA Influence

Three pages to storm the CASL

By Kim Covert November 20, 2017 20 November 2017


There’s more wrong with Canada’s Anti-Spam Law than can be dealt with in a three-page submission. So it is problematic that the House of Commons Committee on Industry, Science and Technology has limited the statutory review of the law in both time and space, three CBA Sections say in their submission.

“The time-limited review by the House of Commons Committee and the three-page limit on submissions is inadequate to address the complexities and challenges of CASL in its current form, and the requirement for a statutory review does not contemplate such a limited process,” says the submission, produced by the Privacy and Access and Competition Law Sections, as well as the CCCA. The Sections advise that further consultation is necessary in order to achieve CASL’s objectives.

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CBA Influence

Yes, but no: Well-intended Bill C-51 would not improve justice in sex assault cases

By Kim Covert November 20, 2017 20 November 2017


Changes to the Criminal Code’s sexual assault regime in Bill C-51 threaten to upset the ability of an accused to provide a full defence, suggests the CBA’s Criminal Justice Section.

The aim of the proposed bill is to remove unconstitutional or obsolete sections from the Criminal Code, a move that the Section supports. When it comes to other parts of the bill, those dealing with sexual assault cases in particular, “the CBA Section believes that much of what is proposed would fall short of improving justice for either complainants or accused,” it writes in a letter to the Chair of the House Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

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CBA influence

Concerns with proposed changes to Access to Information Act

By Kim Covert November 16, 2017 16 November 2017

Concerns with proposed changes to Access to Information Act

When quasi-constitutional legislation interferes with a quasi-constitutional right, things are likely to get entirely messy.

The Supreme Court of Canada has characterized access to information legislation as quasi-constitutional in nature. Bill C-58, which contains amendments to the Access to Information Act, has provisions with respect to solicitor-client privilege – the quasi-constitutional right – and the constitutional principle of judicial independence that several CBA groups find troubling.

The Privacy and Access Law Section, along with the Ethics and Professional Responsibility and the Judicial Issues subcommittees, say in their submission that they support the overall intent of modernization. The Act no longer reflects current information and communications technologies and is out of line with citizens’ expectations of transparency in government – and with existing legislation in other jurisdictions.

 

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CBA influence

Offering asylum is about more than opening borders

By Kim Covert November 15, 2017 15 November 2017

 

A good host makes sure that there is enough food and drink and other amenities to make those invited to the party feel welcome and comfortable. Canada is in danger of being a bad host to its most recent arrivals.

Asylum-seekers have been streaming across the Canada-U.S. border since last winter, thanks to an unwelcoming environment in the U.S. and the prime minister’s announcement in January that they would be welcome in Canada.

However sincere Canada might be about wanting to accept people fleeing war and persecution in their home countries, the fact is that the departmental infrastructure was already having trouble keeping up with the number of regular immigration applications.

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