This Week in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms 2018-05-27

by | May 27, 2018


By Scott Douglas Jacobsen

“Ponoka Christian School (PCS) is among a group of several Alberta schools and families taking on the province’s Bill 24: An Act to Support Gay-Straight Alliances (GSA).

The hearing for this large group of schools, which includes the Lacombe and Rimbey Christian Schools, is coming up on June 8 in Medicine Hat.

The grounds of the application state that there is an absence of parental knowledge with Bill 24, which creates an opportunity for predation.

“Children are often exploited, both sexually and emotionally, by adults or by their own peers, often with tragic, lifelong and irreparable consequences,” states the application, which can be found at the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms website.

“The abuse and exploitation of children occurs most often in places, and during times, when parents are absent and unaware,” it adds.

For parents within the application, it adds there is a worry of an air of secrecy. “The parents are alarmed and frightened at the climate of secrecy that the School Act has created around ideological sexual clubs and related activities.””


“This time around, the massive legal bill was not claimed by controversial St. Catharines regional Coun. Andy Petrowski.

Recently released 2017 regional councillor expense data shows that Petrowski — who claimed, and was paid for, $44, 570 in legal bills in April 2017 — claimed an additional $14,318 in “external legal expenses.”

However, Petrowski denied he filed that expense and acting regional clerk Anne-Marie Norio confirmed Thursday it was an error.

However, she would not explain how the mistake was made, only saying in an email it “was an incorrect allocation due to an administrative error.”

“We have no further comment,” Norio wrote in an email when asked for details.

The expense report says Petrowski billed the Region for $14,318 for legal services from the Toronto legal firm of Boghosian & Allen in July 2017. The report does not specify why the firm was hired.

In an email to The Standard, Petrowski — who is currently on paid leave from regional council for undisclosed reasons — said he did not file the expense. Norio later confirmed the error.

Petrowski has filed for large external legal bills in the past, however.”


“The only thing wrong with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s commencement speech to the graduates of New York University recently is that his walk doesn’t match his talk.

In other words, his 22-minute address on May 16 is filled with glaring hypocrisy.

“Humanity has to fight our tribal mindset,” he told the thousands who gathered in the rain at Yankee Stadium.

“So here is my request: As you go forward from this place, I would like you to make a point of reaching out to people whose beliefs and values differ from your own. I would like you to listen to them, truly listen, and try to understand them, and find that common ground,” he continued.

Trudeau should tell that to the thousands of charities and faith groups denied Canada Summer Jobs funding, not to mention pro-life MPs in his own caucus because they refused to sign something they don’t agree with, particularly unrestricted abortion.

He should tell that to the poor and the homeless who will suffer as a result and the students who will be denied meaningful employment working with the needy or children.

“But the leadership we need most today and in the years to come is leadership that brings people together. . . . This is the antithesis of the polarization, the aggressive nationalism, the identity politics that have grown so common of late. It’s harder, of course. It’s always been easier to divide than unite. But mostly, it requires true courage.””


“Diane Ikonen writes that it’s unfair that potential employers cannot access the Canada Summer Jobs program because “their beliefs about when life begins differ from the Liberals.”

That is completely untrue — the attestation in question is clearly based on protecting Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms. These are not Liberal values or even Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s values. A woman’s right to choose and LGBTQ2 rights are very hard-earned Canadian values, protected by our constitution.

Your writer is also wrong in claiming that pro-life candidates are not permitted to run as a candidate for MP in the Liberal Party. There are famously several pro-life Liberal MPs, and as long as they respect Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms, there is no issue. That is the exact same bargain Stephen Harper struck with his pro-life Conservative MPs.

As I understand it, in the past the Conservatives funded groups putting kids to work distributing graphic flyers and poster of aborted fetuses. I’m proud this government has taken the principled stand that we will not fund groups that actively work to undermine the rights of women and the LGBTQ2 communities.”


Long wait times are the vulnerable soft underbelly of the Canadian health system.

Canadians treasure our single-payer, publicly-funded program of physician and hospital care, virtually as a defining part of our national identity. And yet, increasing legal and political pressure over quick access to elective surgeries – cataract extraction and joint replacement, for example – threaten to undermine that support.

The Commonwealth Fund 2017 report ranked Canada last among 11 countries in timeliness of care.

And a case before the British Columbia Supreme Court aims to topple provincial regulations that limit private payment for medically necessary services, claiming that surgical wait times for elective procedures such as arthroscopic knee surgery violate the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The truth is that few people anywhere in the world are in love with their health-care system. Canada is no exception. Why?

Modern health care is expensive – so expensive, at C$5,900 per person per year in Canada, US$9,900 in the U.S. and £2,900 in the U.K., that it costs more than many people are happy to pay, whether through taxation, insurance premiums or out-of-pocket.”


Scott Douglas Jacobsen is the Founder of In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal and In-Sight Publishing. He authored/co-authored some e-books, free or low-cost. If you want to contact Scott:

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