Democratic Rights

Democratic Rights


Canada ranks last in freedom of information: study

Dean Beeby Ottawa- The Canadian Press Jan. 09, 2011 A new study ranks Canada dead last in an international comparison of freedom-of-information laws – a hard fall after many years being judged a global model in openness. The study by a pair of British academics looked at the effectiveness of freedom-of-information laws in five parliamentary […]

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BC Government gets failing grade on program to monitor information security

A report from BC’s Auditor General says that the province has not established an effective process for monitoring the security of its information. A software tool called Security HealthCheck that monitors security policies, standards and practices has been introduced across government ministries, but the AG found that its implementation is seriously flawed. Self-assessments by more […]

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Poorly designed third party advertising rules chilled election debate, reduced voter access to information: Study

A new study has found that BC’s third party advertising rules caused extensive problems for “small spenders” such as non-profits and charities during the 2009 provincial election. The rules – brought in through the controversial Bill 42 in 2008 – led to widespread confusion, wasted resources, anxiety and self-censorship among organizations that spent little or […]

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Is Canada’s heritage minister an agent of foreign influence?

Heritage Minister James Moore accuses ‘radical extremists’ of opposing his proposed copyright legislation. FIPA’s Vincent Gogolek wonders if the minister is one of the mysterious ‘Agents of Foreign Influence’ cited by CSIS director Richard Fadden – certainly he’s under the influence of American cultural industries, their lobbyists and possibly the U.S. government. Open Letter To: […]

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A New Year lesson for Canada and BC: Obama’s White House Promotes New Open Government Initiative

Under a new open government plan released by the Obama administration, U.S. government agencies must publish their information online in “open formats” and proactively release data using modern technologies instead of waiting for Freedom of Information Act requests Agencies, to the greatest extent that is practical, should publish their data online in an open format […]

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Information commissioner battles challenges by bureaucracy

Opinion – Vaughn Palmer Vancouver Sun December 3, 2009 BC Information commissioner David Loukidelis is seeking a $400,000 legal budget to cover the growing number of court challenges to his rulings by the B.C. government and other public bodies. Loukidelis outlined his predicament in a recent presentation to the legislature finance committee, which vets the […]

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Free to Speak Campaign takes on unfair BC election law, warns of danger to individuals and small groups

Vancouver – A non-partisan coalition, including FIPA, the BC Civil Liberties Association, and the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, has come together to warn British Columbians that it is not just big spenders who are at risk under the new BC Election Act. The Election Act’s third party advertising restrictions have opened a nightmare of arbitrary enforcement, […]

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Free to Speak Campaign takes on unfair BC election law, warns of danger to individuals and small groups

Vancouver – A non-partisan coalition, including FIPA, the BC Civil Liberties Association, and the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, has come together to warn British Columbians that it is not just big spenders who are at risk under the new BC Election Act. The Election Act’s third party advertising restrictions have opened a nightmare of arbitrary enforcement, […]

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Diverse Coalition Launches New Effort to Respond to Government Censorship and Threats to Privacy

In an effort to protect and advance the human rights of freedom of expression and privacy, a diverse coalition of leading information and communications companies, major human rights organizations, academics, investors and technology leaders today launched the Global Network Initiative. From the Americas to Europe to the Middle East to Africa and Asia, companies in […]

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BC Civil Liberties group decries secret consultations

The BC government increasingly engages in secret consultations when legislative and policy changes are being considered. The latest example concerns proposed amendments to the Police Act. In order to participate in consultations, BC Civil Liberties Association was asked to sign a confidentiality agreement that requires participants to keep secret everything said both before AND AFTER […]

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On the first anniversary of Canada’s “no-fly” list, travellers are urged to tell their stories

In the face of growing surveillance of travellers, many Canadians are being caught in the web of government watch lists. Civil liberties groups and major labour unions are pooling their efforts to document how these measures are violating our privacy and mobility rights. The International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group (ICLMG – FIPA is a member) […]

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BC’s public transit authority moves behind closed doors

The new board chair of TransLink, BC’s public transit authority, is coming under fire for deciding to move the provincial transit authority’s previously public board meetings behind closed doors. Dale Parker says the media and the public will no longer be allowed into regular board meetings. He says the most effective process for developing strategic […]

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